Saturday, June 28, 2014

american fork half marathon

I finally did it. After saying so many times on this blog that I was going to run a half marathon, I finally lived up to my word.

I LOVED it. I honestly enjoyed every second of it--even the 12th mile.

Waking up at 3:30 a.m. isn't my favorite, but of course I took a fat 2 hour nap after the race. And it was so beautiful seeing the sun rise over the mountains where we started.

I ran with my good friend Laurel and her mother-in-law Bonnie. The bus ride up to the mountains was super fun. The bus driver blasted the music so we could get pumped up and I found myself dancing in my seat and singing along to Nicki Minaj.

We had to wait at the start line in the mountains for almost an hour in the freezing cold. About 15 minutes before the race started, they asked us to take off our sweats and put them in our bags. I've never been so reluctant to take off my clothes in my whole life. We were shivering our petuties (spelling?) off in our little running shorts.

^Seeing the lake get brighter was exquisite. I love me some nature.

The race started and we were in the very back trying to get to the starting line. The first few miles were thrilling and we turned it into a game of "pass the slow, old people." There were so many people that we had to dart in and out and find little tiny holes we could pass through.

The race was entirely beautiful and the mountains blessed us with a nice breeze. I loved the bikers and observers cheering us on and giving us water and goo. I had so much adrenaline rushing through me. Races are a million times more exciting than regular Saturday long runs.

I finished with a better time than I expected (1:55) and with a huge smile on my face. In January of this year, running was the bane of my existence. I even threw up the first time running with my husband, ha! Now I consider 10 miles to be easy. It's amazing how your body can adapt and grow in such a small amount of time.

^^Kneader's french toast after the race. Delicious. Thanks to my supportive and wonderful husband for the pictures and for cheering me on at the finish line.

^^Lovely friend. I'm so glad I started running with her. She's got me through some hard times these past few months. And goodness, I need to learn to suck it in after eating!

People of the world, running is great. If I can do it, you absolutely can too.

We are running the Top of Utah marathon this September. Wish us luck because we're sure going to need it.

Sunday, June 15, 2014

Hawaii II

Oh Hawaii. How I want to live there. We stayed in a beach house on Sunset Beach in Oahu and it was just pure amazing. We spent late nights playing Scattergories and making family dinners, early mornings snorkeling at Shark's Cove (my personal favorite from the trip), and afternoons relaxing on the gorgeous, surreal beaches and just being the crazy, overly loud family that we are. 

Here are some things we did in pictures:

^Visiting my mom's Aunt Reiko  (the little, cute, Asian woman in the front) and her cousin Rosslyn.

^Pearl Harbor. Everything was closed. Apparently Hawaiians are scared of wind.

^Bean, ice cream, and mochi ball concoction at the famous Matsumoto's shave ice shack.

^The boys jumping off rocks at Waimea Beach until the lifeguards kicked them out.

^Taking super adorable pictures.

^My mom and I went running almost every morning. We woke up super early because Utah is 4 hours ahead of Hawaii and California 3. It was nice running at 6:00 a.m. We saw a lot of beautiful vegetation on our runs as well as some cool animals. This is a chicken with its chicks, but apparently they are native to Hawaii and run wild.

^Going to Waimea Falls and looking super white doing it. As you can see, Brett and I glowed with our luminescent paleness.

^Early morning workout improvisations. Sophie makes for good squat weights. And Brett's head in the background enjoying the ocean. 

^More shave ice

^Giovanni's Shrimp. Holy moly, this is a must! We went here when I was about 15 and I've been dreaming about this garlic shrimp ever since. I was ecstatic when we went back. Garlic shrimp + a lump of rice + spiced barbecue corn-on-the-cob= heaven in my mouth. Now I want it again. Boo, another reason why I need to live on Oahu!

^Sister time at Sunset Beach. 

^I want to live in that hut.

^The Polynesian Cultural Center. It's a theme park of sorts produced and maintained by BYU-Hawaii. You get to learn about all the different Polynesian islands from Samoa to Tonga to Tahiti to Fiji. My favorite by far is the Maori from New Zealand (pictured with me above). They performed an opening ritual for us honoring fallen soldiers and I got emotional. Yes, I'm very weird.

The pictures below are by the fabulous and stunning Bree Hanneman that took the pictures in the previous post. Her husband and Garrett's friend Seek gave us surfing lessons. He also treated us to some very refreshing acai bowls at his restaurant.

I might actually be a surfer if San Diego water was as warm as Hawaii water. I could have stayed out surfing all day every day!

On our last night there, we all were at the beach watching the sunset while Dad and Sophie were snorkeling. Sophie was a mermaid in her past life. I just sat there feeling the soft wind on my face and watching the sun peek out of the clouds like God wanted a peep at the ocean and it just hit me that the world is beautiful and life can be hard but it can also be very good.

What a great bonding time this was before Marcus went on his mission to Chicago. He is there now and we are so proud and excited for him!

I love my family.

Monday, June 9, 2014


All photos by the great Bree Hanniman. Hawaii was incredible. I loved these. But, let's face it, I'm no model. 

More to come. Here's a sneak peek:

Everybody should go to Hawaii before they die. Paradise.