choco choco mint cookies

by @according2kelly on March 6, 2014

choco-choco-mint-cookies

science has practically proven that fresh baked cookies & a cold glass of milk are the answer to MOST of life’s problems.

especially these choco choco mint cookies.

pretty sure they are the solution to world peace, & a whole lot more.

choco choco mint cookies

ingredients:
2 sticks of room temperature butter
1 cup brown sugar
3/4 cup sugar
2 eggs
1 tsp. vanilla
1 tsp. baking soda
2 3/4 cups flour
1 tsp. salt
1/2 tsp. baking powder
1 10-oz bag andes creme de menthe baking chips
1 12-oz bag white chocolate chips
1 cup of each: milk chocolate, semi-sweet chocolate, & dark chocolate chips

directions:
1. cream butter & sugars
2. mix in eggs, vanilla, baking soda
3. slowly add flour, salt, baking powder & chocolate chips

bake at 350 degrees for 12-14 minutes or until slightly browned on the edges

notes:
* there’s alot of chocolate chips involved in this recipe (hence the name choco choco mint cookies) – the exact amounts don’t really matter, i just think they taste best with a little variety.

* i always bake these cookies on a silpat or parchment paper & you want to take them out of the oven when they are just barely browned on the edges & still soft.

* just like any other cookie, keep these in an air-tight container. because of all the sugar, they seem to harden up a wee bit faster than other cookies – but no worries, they usually don’t last long enough for anyone to notice.

choco choco mint cookies are best served with an ice cold glass of milk (or chocolate milk, if you want to live on the wild side). be careful though, they are addicting – just giving you fair warning. i don’t want to hear any complaints when you can’t stop eating them.

 

 

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what i wear & how i wear it

by @according2kelly on March 5, 2014

tieks-ballet-shoes-harveys-seatbelt-bag

there was no yellow brick road, but that didn’t stop me from wearing my ruby red tieks (& carrying my teal lola satchel) – helping spread awareness about the prevalence of heart disease among women.

check out the american heart association to learn more.

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princess half marathon

by @according2kelly on March 3, 2014

sleeping-beauty-good-fairy-running-costumesScreen shot 2014-03-02 at 9.00.21 PMwhat’s not to love about the runDisney princess half marathon?

it’s the ultimate “girl’s weekend.”

princess-half-marathon-start

i’ve heard it said that “girl’s compete with each other. but women empower each other.”

& that’s definitely true when it comes to the princess half marathon weekend.

good-fairies-flying-princess-half-marathon

of course i saw lots of running costumes (carrie, elise & i ran as flora, fauna & merryweather, sleepying beauty’s “good fairies”), tiaras, all things sparkly, princess sashes & many flutes of bubbly throughout the weekend.

princess-half-marathon-princes

but what really stands out in my mind was the kindness, friendship, encouragement & even love that i witnessed throughout the entire weekend & especially during the race itself.

princess-half-marathon-good-fairies

i watched as friendships formed in the corrals, as runners encouraged & sometimes even helped one another on the race course, as volunteers & spectators cheered & motivated thousands of “random strangers.”

princess-half-marathon-sleeping-beauty

for some people this was their first half marathon ever.

others were hoping to PR after months & months of training.

for a number of runners this race was the final step to completing the inaugural glass slipper challenge (running both the disney enchanted 10K & the princess half marathon in a single weekend, at total of 19.3 miles).

& many people were looking forward to earning their “pink” coast to coast medal, having already run the tinker bell half marathon at disneyland the month before, entitling them to extra “bling” at the finish line.

princess-half-good-fairy-running-cosutme

but i think it’s safe to say that every single person was looking forward to, thrilled, eager & very much excited to soon be running & walking through the walt disney world resort, the magic kingdom & epcot.

running with some of my BRFs (best running friends), character photo opps, on-course entertainment, & the overflowing feelings of excitement, empowerment and love for one another, were definitely the makings of a memorable race.

princess-half-marathon-finish-line

but one of my favorite moments of the weekend was sitting at the finish line, cheering & watching as runners crossed.

to be quite honest, i think watching others cross the finish brought me more joy than when i crossed it myself, earlier that same morning.

princess-half-marathon-finishers-picture

watching others accomplish something amazing, something they had trained months for, something some of them may have once thought to be impossible – was definitely nothing other than magical.

everyone i saw was exuding happiness.

princess-half-medal

Screen shot 2014-03-02 at 9.00.34 PMyou could literally feel the excitement in the air, & i’d be lying if i said i wasn’t moved to tears.

i love how one incredible weekend, how 13.1 amazing miles, & the promise of a little bling, is able to bring out the “inner princess” in everyone.

            princess-bling

“if you are losing faith in human nature, go out and watch a marathon.”

better yet, attend the princess half marathon.

feel the love, experience the kindness, & embrace the empowerment for yourself. i can promise you this – you’ll walk away with a warm & fuzzy feeling inside.

2014 princess half marathon by the numbers

* total chip time 2:22:49 – definitely not my fastest time, but probably my most memorable race ever.
* 453rd place out of  3,051 women in my age group
* 2513rd place out of  19,294 women
* 2830th place out of 20,750 runners
* 5K split time 26:24 (8:30/ mile pace)
* 10K split 54:07 (8:43/ mile pace)
* 15K split 1:21:38 (8:45/ mile pace)

i don’t know what it is – the energy, the spectators, the entertainment, the pixie dust? somehow runDisney races always prove to be my most favorite races of the season.

so if you haven’t run disney yet – do it. whether it’s your first race, or your tenth, you’re sure to have a magical time.

want to read more about my runDisney adventures, check out my other runDisney race recaps.

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disney princess enchanted 10K

by @according2kelly on February 27, 2014

cinderella-running-costumei may have spent the week dressed as a princess on the run, proving that a pair of shoes can change your life (especially the runDisney new balance running shoes & sparkle athletic shwings).

cinderella-new-balance-running-shoes

but for the inaugural disney princess enchanted 10K during the princess half marathon weekend, i donned my fairy wings & ran as a pirate fairy princess with one of my brf’s (best running friends) princess snow white, aka @dietdivatara.

pirate-fairty-princess-running-costume

luckily for us, we ran into princess elsa on the way to the star, & even had time to build a snow man.

fairy-pirate-princess-running-costume   Screen shot 2014-02-28 at 1.28.34 PM

before we knew it we were off & running, chatting & taking pictures along theentire route.

the disney princess enchanted 10K course just so happens to be the exact, same course as the walt disney world 10K, which i had ran the month before.

& while i may have struggled to finish the 6.2 miles a little over a month ago, this time i literally flew through the course, happily collecting my bling at the end.

enchanted-10K-medalScreen shot 2014-02-28 at 1.28.49 PM

2014 disney princess enchanted 10K by the numbers

* total chip time 50:07
* 10th place out of 1,333 women in my age group
* 54th place out of 7,928 women
* 110th place out of 8,967 runners
* 5K split time 24:23

want to read more about my runDisney adventures, check out my other runDisney race recaps.

 

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be a rainbow.

by @according2kelly on February 26, 2014

newno act of kindness, no matter how small, is ever wasted. you never know when you might become the rainbow in someone else’s cloud.

 

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life in a snow globe
{park city mountain resort}

by @according2kelly on February 20, 2014

there is absolutely nothing in the world like spending time on the mountain at park city mountain resort. it’s my heaven on earth, & i love being able to share it with my littles, even if it was for just a few days…

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making whoopie.

by @according2kelly on February 10, 2014

red-velvet-whoopie-piesit’s become a bit of a valentine’s tradition, but i made whoopie last night.

red velvet whoopie pies that is.

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tinker bell half marathon

by @according2kelly on January 27, 2014

finish-tinker-bell-halfi finished the 2014 runDisney tinker bell half marathon.

trust me when i say, i truly doubted that i would ever be able to utter those words.

eight & a half weeks prior to the tinker bell half marathon i had major surgery.

the kind of surgery that resulted in me being on “bed rest” for nearly 3 weeks.

the kind of surgery that resulted in me being hardly able to walk, let alone run.

the kind of surgery that i am still ever so slowly recovering from.

two weeks before the race, i was given the “go ahead” to start running again. so i laced up my running shoes, literally huffing & puffing, as i shuffled my feet through two miles.

honestly. that was probably the hardest run of my entire life.

knowing tinker bell half marathon was less than two weeks away, i felt extremely discouraged.

the next day, i once again laced up my running shoes, literally huffing & puffing, as i shuffled my feet through three miles.

the following day i ran four miles, & then my last “long” run, before i began my “taper” was the inaugural walt disney world 10K during the walt disney world marathon weekend – 6.2 of the slowest, hardest, most emotional miles i have ever (& most likely will ever) run.

having run a total of 15.2 miles, in the 8 weeks prior to the tinker bell half marathon, i wasn’t exactly feeling confident.

as i toed the starting line on the morning of the race, my heart raced, my stomach full of butterflies, & i was physically shaking, despite how calm & collected i may have looked dressed in my perry the platypus running costume.

perry-running-costume

Screen shot 2014-02-27 at 1.44.28 PM

but none of that could outweigh the excitement in the air, the rush of adrenaline, the joy of knowing i was surrounded by 15,000 of my nearest & dearest friends (including @dietdivatara).

tinker-bell-half-diet-diva

so, with a firework sendoff, i ran across the starting line, completely unsure of whether i would later be crossing the finish line, running, walking or crawling.

tinker-bell-half-start

luckily, i had a friend to run with.

together we ran, we chatted, we high-fived volunteers & spectators, we cheered for our fellow runners, & we celebrated…

every single mile marker past six became a mini party, celebrating the furthest i had run in 8 weeks. there was dancing & cheering, & maybe even a cartwheel or two.

the point being – i wanted to enjoy my journey & recognize the “little victories” along the way.

oh yeah, & we took pictures. lots & lots of pictures…

2014 tinker bell half marathon

{in pictures}



tink-half-marathon

tinker-bell-half-california-adventure

tinker-bell-half-cars-landincredibles-tinker-bell-half-marathonperry-runs-tinker-bell-half

storm-troopers-tinker-bell-half-marathoncinderella-tinker-bell-half-marathon

rapunzel-tinker-bell-halfcaptain-jack-tinker-bell-half

before we knew it, the finish line was in sight…

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although no pictures managed to catch it, victoria & i crossed in unison, smiling from ear to ear.

tinker-bell-half-finish-line

best-running-friendsperry-the-platypus-running-costume

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secret-agent-p-running-costumeScreen shot 2014-02-27 at 2.03.56 PM

i’m not sure if it was disney magic, the power of sparkle, or the result of a really long taper, i was able to run 13.1 miles, & cross the finish line feeling good.

2014 tinker bell half marathon by the numbers

* total chip time 1:58:56
* 76th place out of  2,019 women in my age group
* 421st place out of  11,491 women
* 624th place out of 13,144 runners
* 5K split time 27:30
* 10K split 56:25
* 15K split 1:24:21

i don’t know what it is – the energy, the spectators, the entertainment, the pixie dust? somehow runDisney races always prove to be the most fun (& sometimes my fastest) races i run all year. i’d definitely say that runDisney races bring out the “best” in everyone.

so if you haven’t run disney yet – do it. whether it’s your first race, or your tenth, you’re sure to have a magical time.

want to read more about my runDisney adventures, check out my other runDisney race recaps.

 

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never land 5K

by @according2kelly on January 20, 2014

the never land 5K, heck all of the runDisney 5Ks, are always totally memorable &perfectly magical.

it’s the only race during the tinker bell half marathon weekend that isn’t timed, making it more of a run than a race.

tinker-bell-running-costume
Screen shot 2014-02-27 at 3.10.40 PMin my eyes, the never land 5K is pretty special…

it’s something that the entire family can do together.

like all of the runDisney 5K’s, the entire family can actually run/ walk together. so it’s not surprising that that race corrals were filled with families, sometimes even multiple generations, often times everyone dressed in costume.

what else is special about the never land 5K? i love that the entire race takes places within disneyland & disney california adventure parks.

never-land-5k-map

it’s not everyday that you get to experience the sun rise, as you are running in, & around the disneyland resort.

disney characters & entertainment on-course to cheer you on? photo opportunities galore?

everything & anything about the never land 5K makes it absolutely & completely special, in every possible way.

neverland-5K
Screen shot 2014-02-27 at 3.12.16 PM

no other race, can produce that same warm & fuzzy, feel-good feeling that a runDisney family fun 5K creates.

especially at the finish, when they drape the “bling” around your neck.

never-land-5K-medal

after all,  it really is all about the bling – & runDisney races (even the 5Ks) always seem to have the very best medals.

so if you haven’t run disney yet – do it. whether it’s your first race, or your tenth, you’re sure to have a magical time.

want to read more about my runDisney adventures, check out my other runDisney race recaps.

 

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walt disney world 10K

by @according2kelly on January 13, 2014

walt-disney-world-marathon-costumes

while carrie & i spent most of our days during the walt disney world marathon weekend dressed as snow white & tinker bell. we did wake up early one morning, donned our polka dots & participated in the inaugural walt disney world 10K.

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Screen shot 2014-02-27 at 10.34.06 PM

considering i had had surgery seven weeks prior, that i had only ran three times during those seven weeks, the furthest of which being only four miles – i knew i wouldn’t be breaking any records that morning. but i didn’t anticipate how hard the race would be.

i don’t know if it was my asthma, the humidity, the fact that i was sick – or a combination of all three. but i really struggled that morning.

in the last year & a half i’ve ran over 10 half marathons, 5 marathons (qualifying for boston twice), several relays, 10Ks & 5Ks. & yet, that morning, finishing 6.2 miles felt nearly impossible.

walt-disney-world-10K-medal

once that beautiful medal was hung around my neck, suddenly all the pain, all the struggles & all the tears i had experienced during those miles were forgotten, replaced with feelings of pride & accomplishment.

at the end of the day, “whether it’s a 15 minute mile or a 7 minute mile, it’s still a mile.”

i just have to remember that “it doesn’t get easier, you just get better.” & as long as i keep putting one foot in front of the other, i too will get better, & hopefully a wee bit faster.

 

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