Friday Favorites v.73

I took a day off from work today to get everything prepared for our Halloween party, so things are a little random over here today. A trip to the grocery, lots of cleaning and some last minute decorating. I’m hoping to get everything done today so I can relax all day tomorrow! Check back in Monday for a full recap of the weekend’s events.

But keeping with my normal schedule on the blog, here is this week’s Friday Favorites!

1. Our Halloween party!!! <– Yes it requires three exclamation marks because I have been looking forward to this for weeks. I can’t wait to see everyone’s costumes, eat lots of great food and spend time chatting and playing games with friends.

2. How National Geographic grew its Snapchat audience by 3M in 3 months. This is a super interesting read! I love learning how other companies handle their marketing and social media and this is a good example of something that works. 

3. THIS! Some days I feel like I need to put this sign on my back. So. Many. Interruptions. 
4. The winning cornbread recipe from PBFingers. I love cornbread with chili and I can’t wait to try out this recipe in the next week or two!

5. Hustle for that muscle.
I saw this quote on Instagram earlier this week and I love it. It motivated me, so I’m hoping it will do the same for you.

6. THIS VIEW. Give me all the praise hands. I love living in the country. Plus this sunset was pretty amazing — look at these colors!

7. Shelter starts sorting dogs into Hogwarts houses to help them get adopted.

8. Instastory filters and stickers make everything better. Love this crazy pup and our wonderful life.

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Friday Favorites v. 72

TGIF! This work week was a mess and I so happy it’s *almost* the weekend! While I don’t have any big plans, I am just excited to get in some long runs and rest and relaxation.

Here are some of my favorites from this week:

1. I’ve signed up for a 5 mile race the Saturday before Thanksgiving!

2. Emma Coburn just had the wedding every running couple dreams of. I love Emma and followed her and Kara Goucher on Instagram, so I loved seeing all their pictures from the week!

3. If you saw my post on Wednesday this is especially funny.  img_2203.jpg4. Our local Apple Fest is this weekend! I’m so excited for apple doughnuts and cider.

5. There is a Facebook page specifically for UPS drivers and the dogs they meet on their routes. So cute and heartwarming. A good animal story (especially one involving dogs) always makes me smile.

6. Surprise, surprise, another heartwarming dog story 🙂 Stray dog crashes a wedding and finds his own happily ever after.

7. Four pasta alternatives to fuel your run.

8. Probably my favorite picture from the week. Check out Monday’s post for all the funny Murphy pictures.

Monday with Murphy 

I love sunny days with Murphy. He has all the energy in the world and would play fetch all day, every day if we let him. On Monday I spent almost my entire lunch break playing fetch with Murphy and his favorite red ball. Yay for being able to come home for lunch!

Someone was not very good at catch today. I love taking a burst of photos because I catch some of Murphy’s funniest moments.

Exact representation of how I felt today. It was busy, a mess and all around chaos. Here’s to a less hectic tomorrow!

But I am thankful for a pup who loves my unconditionally and listens to me rant about my work day. As long as he gets a treat and a belly rub, he is happy.
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Friday Favorites v. 71

Happy Friday! I am enjoying a four day weekend, so no work for me today!

But to keep things running smoothly, here is my regular Friday series, Friday Favorites!

1. Jordan Hasay becomes fastest American woman to run Bank of America Chicago Marathon. <– She is killin’ it this year!

2. This rice and quinoa pouches have become a staple in our house over the last couple of weeks. They are cheap, healthy and filling! Perfect combo. I’ve been mixing half a bag of this with some grilled chicken nuggets and salsa for a perfect supper.

3. I gave my midterm to my students earlier this week, so I’ve officially made it half a semester as an adjunct college professor! I’ve learned so much and I can’t wait to improve next semester.

4. If you missed my post on Wednesday, be sure to you love your people extra this week.

5. This peanut butter and jelly smoothie recipe from Eating Bird Food. Just looking at the pictures makes my mouth water — it’s two of my favorite things mixed together! PB&Js and smoothie, you can’t get any better than that.

6. OH MY STARS. This is precious. 25 photos of dogs dressed as Disney characters.

7. Jax, the official stamp licker.

8. Murphy and his toys. This pup loves his animals so much. We literally find his toys hidden all over the house, it’s hilarious. img_2126

Running with Murphy

Hi Internet friends! I’m checking in later than normal today, but I have a very informative post about running in the summer heat with your dog.

One of my favorite things to do on the weekends is run with Murphy. Whether we are at the park or just running around my parent’s neighborhood, getting some sunshine and some miles in always makes us both feel better.

(The first quarter mile is always interesting. Peeing on everything and sniffing ALL THE THINGS.)
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After the first .25 we’re good to go!

Every time I get out Murphy’s harness, he goes crazy because he knows it’s time to run. It’s the cutest thing ever. (Can’t you tell I’m a pet parent?! haha)

The great thing about running with Murphy is he makes running fun again. Whether it’s just a couple times around the block or 3 miles at the park, he is so happy to be outside and running.

It makes me want to be more present in my runs and enjoy each and every step.

Plus, post-run naps with Murph are pretty great too.
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But with summer in full effect, I wanted to talk about the importance of not over doing it when running with your favorite furry friend.
I always let Murphy dictate the pace, which is never a problem because is definitely faster than me and has more energy.
Some other do’s and don’ts to keep with mind when running with your furry friend.
Do: Check with your vet to make sure everything is okay with your pup health-wise and to make sure they are fit to run. Remember, just like humans, not all dogs are meant to run for miles and miles.
Don’t: Start them too young.
Do: Remember to bring water for them too! Think about how thirsty you get on a run, our pups are even more thirsty!
Don’t: Forget to check for ticks after your run. Even if you’re not hitting the trails, giving your pup a quick look-over will be beneficial.
Do: Have a poop plan. I think this one speaks for its self.
Do: Take walk and run breaks if needed. There is no shame in walking.

Happy running!

Friday Favorites v.53

Haaaappy Friiiiday! I can’t believe another week has come and gone. I love that weekend is already upon us, but man does it feel like time is flying by.

So before some fun in the sun this weekend — let’s talk favorites.

1. One of my favorite things to do is host. I love having people in my home, taking care of them and feeding everyone a good meal. Earlier this week, Emily Ley shared a great post on her blog with tips from others on how to be hospitable and how love people well.

2. Since Wednesday was Global Running Day, Brooks launched the coolest campaign I’ve seen in a while. The thought was that every runner should be endorsed. So by signing up here, you can become an official Brooks endorsed athlete.
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3. I’ve been looking into some Whole30 recipes this week. While I’m not planning on completly following the plan, I would like to get some ideas on how to incorporate more whole foods into my diet. Have any suggestions on Whole 30 snacks or recipes? Let me know in the comments below!

4. Running and pups. Two of my favorite things.

5. Country livin’ 😍

6. The second biggest project I do all year got sent off the printer yesterday. Such a hufe weight off my shoulders!

7. The difference between dog lovers and dog parents. Haha. It’s so true!

8. ​Fetch is fun. Boomerangs are cool.

How Murphy has improved my life

If you’ve been reading this blog for any time know, then you know how much I love my dog. Murphy is and will forever be my first baby.
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I briefly mentioned it on the blog before, but Ryan and I literally went grocery shopping and came home with a dog. The local animal shelter was hosting a pit bull promotion event at Sam’s Club and I met Murphy and fell in love. He had been abused by his previous owner and was found abandoned in a dryer in an empty house. Every day since we brought him home, I’ve tried to make our home filled with nothing but love, toys and treats.
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But for as much as we’ve helped Murphy, he has helped me twice over.

I can be having the worst day or be stressed about work and come home to his sweet face and he instantly makes me forget about all of my problems. Snuggling with him makes me relaxed and I honestly believe every home needs a dog.

Our furry friends can benefit us so much, even without us realizing it.

Personally, I love that Murphy gets me outside walking and running even when I’m not feeling motivated. No matter how lazy I am feeling, I always go outside for a game of fetch. He has so much energy, I swear some of it rubs off on me 😉

My friends over at PuppySpot sent me the following graphic as a reminder of how much pets can improve our health — and I totally agree!puppyspot_dogs_health_x2_v02.jpg
Puppy Spot’s mission is to connect responsible breeders place their puppies with caring individuals and families in New York City, Los Angeles, San Francisco, Washington D.C., Dallas, and across the U.S. PuppySpot is also a community of dog lovers whose mission is to make lives better by placing healthy puppies into happy homes.

If you are not near an animal shelter, or want a specific type of dog, this seems like a great alternative to finding a healthy dog, from a respected and trusted breeder — not a puppy mill. 

Growing up, I never really did have a pet of my own. I lived on a farm with lots of stray cats and cows, but never a dog. Since getting Murphy, I can honestly say my life has improved.

There is a great dog video on Facebook called “So God Made a Dog” and it really pulls at my heartstrings when I think of my own pup. The words in the video are from a poem adapted from another poem called, “So God Made a Farmer.”  

And on the 9th day God looked down on his wide eyed children and said, they need a companion.
So God made a Dog.

God said I need somebody to wake up and give kisses, pee on a tree, sleep all day, wake up again, give more kisses, then stay up until midnight, basking in the glow of the television.
So God made a Dog.

God said I need somebody willing to sit, then stay, then roll over, then with no ego or complaint dress in hats they do not need and costumes they do not understand.  I need somebody who can break wind without a first or second thought.  Who can chase tails, sniff crotches, fetch sticks and lift spirits with a lick.  Somebody who no matter what you didn’t do or couldn’t take or didn’t win or couldn’t make, will love you without judgement just the same.
So God made a Dog.

God said I need somebody strong enough to pull sleds and find bombs and yet gentle enough to love babies and lead the blind.  Somebody that will spend all day on a couch with a resting head and supportive eyes for the broken heart.
So God made a Dog.  

It had to be somebody who would remain patient and loyal even through loneliness, somebody to care, cuddle, snuggle, and nuzzle and cheer and charm and snore and slobber and eat the trash and chase the squirrels.  Somebody who would bring the family together with an open heart. Somebody to bark, and then pant and then reply with the rapid wag of a tail, when their best friend says, “let’s go for a ride in the car.”
So God made a Dog.

God said I need somebody who would stand at your side when the world around you collapses.  Somebody to lie next to you during the long nights of pain and sorrow when it hurts to move, to talk, or think, or be.  Somebody to stand guard, play games, snore for hours and repeat as needed.  Somebody to give you strength when you have none of your own.  Somebody to fight when you have no fight left, to hold onto your soul as if it were their favorite toy, playing tug of war to keep you in this world. Somebody to be your companion and guide in this world and the next. Somebody to wait for you on the other side or stand guard in your absence until they can join you for eternity.
So God made a Dog

Hug your pups (or cats!) tight tonight. Give them some extra belly rubs and their favorite treat before bed. We only have them here for a short time. Make the most of it.

Friday Favorites v.51

This week has been so crazy with coming back from STL, Ryan being gone for almost four days and work ramping up. BUT, all is back to normal (mostly) and it’s a three day weekend. So I am counting down the hours/minutes until 5 p.m.
Before this much needed weekend can begin, let’s get through some of my favorites from this week.

1. I know this sounds silly, but my bed is definitely a favorite this week. After sleeping in a hotel for two days plus being at my parent’s house for three days and sleeping in my brother’s bed while he took the couch, I was so glad to crawl in my bed Wednesday night. Buying a king-sized bed was one of the best things Ryan and I have ever purchased.
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2. Ab work. So running is my strong suite (kind of?) If anything, it’s at least the workout I enjoy the most, but (almost) every day for the last couple of weeks, I’ve been trying to do 100-300 ab variations before I go to bed at night. So between crunches, bicycle abs, v ups and every other ab workout I could think, I’ve been trying to build up my core. Annnnd, I think it’s working! I feel stronger at least. & isn’t that what it’s all about?!

3. I got my Simplified Planner in the mail! If you’ve been reading this blog for any time now, you know my love for Emily Ley and her planners. I love her brand and what she stands for and I can’t wait to start filling these pages come August!
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4. Oiselle thinks sports bras can keep girls in the outdoors. 

5. If you missed my burn bootcamp post from Tuesday, check it out. It’s a simple (but sweaty!) at-home workout.

6. My sunburn from the weekend has now turned into a tan. YAY.

7. These MUST-MAKE CHOCOLATE CHIP ALMOND BUTTER BARS from PBFingers looks amazing. I can’t wait to make + eat these bad boys.

8. Sleepy pup selfies are my favorite. img_0248