Monthly Archives

August 2015

Blog life

Training to run

August 31, 2015

I hate running. For those of you that know me, this should come as no surprise. Yet once a year, I find myself at the starting line of a 5k race with a dear friend for no other purpose than the fact that it’s called the Moustache Run and I absolutely love moustaches.

Usually we run a 5k. No big deal, I can get myself ready to run that in just a few weeks after running virtually zero for the rest of the year.

This year, we’ve upgraded to a 10k.

Which means I need to actually train to make sure I can run the whole distance.

Yikes.

Thankfully, there are a ton of websites and apps devoted to helping non-runners like me turn into a runner in just a few months (or weeks, depending on your starting fitness level).

A little over a week ago, I downloaded an app on my phone (I have an Android) called 10K Runner Training. I love this stupid thing! It takes you from a couch to a 10k in just 14 weeks! Thankfully, I’ve been doing enough cardio (yet another reason I adore yoga) that I was able to start on week 7. But if you need to start at week 1, fret not.

The first workout consists of a 5 minute warm up walk, then alternating 60 seconds jogging with 90 seconds walking 8 times. You repeat this 3 times during the first week before bumping up to week 2.

One of my favorite things about this app is that you only need to commit to running three times a week. Yup, just three times! I was so insanely happy that I wasn’t going to have to get up early every day or forsake my yoga practice for this race. I can totally devote 3 days to running. Especially when fall is coming and the weather is gorgeous for a jog along the river where I live.

A second app I downloaded is called Runkeeper. You start this guy when you begin your run for the day, and it tracks your distance, total time, average pace and lets you take notes about the run. For example, I did a morning run (read 6:30am) this week and it was horrible because I hadn’t eaten. So in the notes, I put: bad morning run. This way I will remember the circumstances for that day and not think there’s something wrong.

So there you have it.ย How even I, who hates running, can work myself up to running a little over 6 miles. All for the sake of a sweet hat and wearing a goofy moustache!

Life snapshot

Life snapshot August 28

August 28, 2015

I realized it’s been a while since I’ve done a Life Snapshot post (I blame Ireland!). So here we are.

Things I’m excited for

1. Sleepovers with college friends. This weekend is going to be a mini-reunion and I cannot wait.

Luther_friends

2. Apple picking season!

3.ย North Carolina. My mom and I are going to take a little trip over Labor Day weekend, just because.

Project goals and updates

1. I *finally* got my deck lights! My mom came down one Saturday and we had a project marathon, including hanging my string lights. Yay! (I’ll have a post about how to put up your own lights soon!)

Deck_lights

2. Next project is to get my craft room re-organized now that I have a new desk in there.

3. Organize and edit my Ireland photos.

Current obsessions

1. Open windows at night. We’ve had a string of cool weather and I’ve been sleeping so well with the windows open!

2. Fresh produce. Trying to cram it all in before the cold weather hits.

I think my next Life Snapshot is going to be devoted to Ireland. That means I have to get my photos organized, ah! Wish me luck.

Good eats

Canning salsa

August 25, 2015

I have a salsa recipe that was given to me by an old roommate (thanks Kelly!). I’ve since altered it a tiny bit but still love it every bit as much. This salsa is great for canning but you could also make a smaller batch and eat it fresh. It’s just as delicious!

Ingredients

  • 6 lbs tomatoes. I use a combination of simple canning tomatoes and heirloom for variety.
  • 1 large onion
  • 4-5 jalapenos (depending on size and how spicy you like your salsa)
  • 1 package Mrs. Wages salsa mix (I usually go for the hot variety, but you can use any)

Instructions

1. Begin by blanching your tomatoes. Cut an X into the bottom of each fruit and place into a pot of boiling water. Don’t overcrowd them; you might have to do a few waves. Boil for about 1 minute, until the skin starts to peel off. Immerse the tomatoes in ice water, then peel skin off and core the tomato.

2. While you’re blanching your tomatoes, sterilize your canning jars. Submerge jars (full of water) into your canner and boil for 10 minutes. It can take a while to boil since there is so much water in the canner, which is why I start this early.

3. Blend up your tomatoes to a consistency you like. I like mine well-blended. Pour into a roasting pan or large pot, whatever will hold the amount you have. At this time, blend up your onion and jalapenos as well. Make sure you wear gloves when handling the jalapenos, those suckers can burn your eyes!

4. Pour all tomatoes, onion, jalapenos and salsa mix into your roasting pan or pot. Since I tend to make a double batch, a roasting pan works really well. Place on the stove and boil. Your purpose here is to get rid of much of the liquid.

5. To assist in liquid removal, you can place a colander in your roasting pan. Press down softly, wait a few minutes, and you will see an abundance of liquid. Use a measuring cup to scoop this out. Continue removing liquid until the salsa is a consistency you like. I like mine quite thick, so this process can take a while. Which is actually perfect, because my canning water takes a while to boil!

6. When your salsa is to your liking, pour into your sterilized jars. I have a canning funnel my grandma used, and it’s a life saver. Make sure to leave 1/2 inch of headspace in the jars, and keep your rims clean.

7. Once your jars are full, dip your finger into some warm water and wet the rim of each jar before you seal it. Don’t fully tighten the tops. Close them securely but don’t overtighten. You will tighten them more once they come out of the canner.

8. Place your sealed jars into your canner and boil for 15 minutes. Take the jars out and listen for the tell-tale “pop” of the top to let you know they’re fully sealed. Once the jars are cool enough to handle, tighten the lids fully and label with the month and year.

If you have extra salsa that won’t fit in your jars, it will keep in the fridge for a week or so. But, if you’re anything like me, there’s no way it will last that long!