Thursday, December 30, 2010

Christmas Vacation

Been way to busy but wanted to let everyone know that I had a great Christmas vacation in Seattle and then Michigan with Jeff's family. We got alot of wedding stuff done in Seattle but still had time to snowboard and cross-country ski and run and relax some. On Christmas Eve Jeff and I headed to Michigan. This was my first year spending Christmas with the Crawfords. It was nice to have several Christmas'- all the more fun!
Chace was dressed as a little Santa and liked to look at everything upside down : )
most of Jeff's girl cousins...

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Monday, December 13, 2010

Rudolf Ramble

It was a snowy and windy morning but that wasn’t going to stop me from doing the last race of the season- Rudolf Ramble 8k. I ran from my house to the start of the race. The wind was so strong that it hurt when the snow blew into your face. When I got to the start of the race the race volunteers were having trouble keeping the table with water from blowing over! There was Christmas music playing and lots of people dressed as Santa’s. I was kind of jealous of the Santa suits- they looked warm! I was talking to a friend when the race started- oops! So I had to start behind the Santa’s- it took awhile before I could get past. I love racing in bad conditions so I was loving the race! I contemplated my race strategy and decided that I needed to draft so I squiggled myself into a big pack of guys…ah nice and wind blocked. However, these guys were not keeping a good pace so I found myself tucking in and then surging to different packs. Anyway it was fun to be thinking on your feet the whole time and knowing that race times were going to be slow so it was all about competing. My friend Columba beat me at the end so I was second overall. Everyone went right to gear check and then home after the race- too cold to stick around!

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Overbeck Family Christmas Party

Today Jeff and I took the train to Kalamazoo for my grandparents Christmas party. It was so fun to see everyone! I hadn't seen my nephew Eddie in a long time. He is so cute with his fluffy white-blond hair. We caught up with everyone, played games, had a gift exchange and had good food and drink. Doesn't get better than that!

Saturday, November 27, 2010


We went caving. Most of the time we were in water waist deep and then at the end there are all these bones from ancient Mayan sacrifices...kind of creepy. On the way back our van got stuck on the side of the road! A local farmer helped us out.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

Long run to the falls

The next morning, Jeff and I ran to the 1000 foot falls (that really is the name of the falls, but personally I think they could have done better as we found out they are actually 1,600 feet tall. It was a beautiful but grueling run (we were running for 1:45 minutes and ran 11 miles (usually I run 11 miles in 1:22 to give an idea of how hilly this was :)). We were constantly going up or down and the Caribbean sun started beat down. Not to worry though, we returned to the resort for a full course breakfast with freshly squeezed OJ (Jeff’s favorite!)

later we went biking to other beautiful waterfalls with my family.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

snorkel and trivia

This morning Melissa and Stephen made us a yummy egg breakfast. Jeff and I went on a run- 4 miles and we had explored the whole island : ). We went swimming in the split, an area people swim between the two islands, we kayaked out to the reef with my parents, and we tried some of the local street food- meat pies, lemon pies, coconut bread, banana bread, and played cards on the roof. Melissa and Stephen took the family out for dinner tonight. We had dinner over the water and under a full moon.

to the mountains..

Today we left for the mountains in Belize. It was a long bumpy road but when we got there we were amazed! The place was amazing and had “anything you want we will do for our guests” type attitude. Jeff and I explored some trails by mountain bike and stopped to canoe in a small lake. From there we discovered the first of many waterfalls called Tiger Falls. Here we decided to take a dip in some fresh mountain water. Because of Jeff’s recent yoga experience he was compelled to bust a couple poses in such a scenic spot. We had a good swim but soon realized that our pool was right at the top of 800 foot falls….

Tuesday, November 23, 2010


Today Jeff and I went fishing. We went on the trip with a really nice couple celebrating on their honeymoon. I had beginners luck and caught a big barracuda on first cast! We also went lobster hunting. I had no idea how lobsters were caught but now I do! We had these spears with a curved hook at the end. Then we would dive down and try to slowly sneak our speared hook under the lobster and then quick pull up, spearing the lobster in the stomach. It was really fun! Jeff and I both got a few lobsters. That evening our guide cooked our fish and lobster and we had the whole family over to his yard for dinner.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


Today we went on an all day snorkeling trip! It was great! We swam with nurse sharks (not aggressive – don’t worry), Rays, Sea Turtles, beautiful fish and coral. We all really enjoyed it. In the evening my dad made us Lobster Pasta in the condo and finished the night with a family game of scrabble.

Saturday, November 20, 2010


Today Jeff and I left in the early morning for our 6:00AM flight to Miami and then from Miami to Belize (Jeff had arrived from his interview in San Diego at 2:30AM the night before. When we arrived in Belize we took a water taxi to a small island called Caye Caulker. The boat ride was longer than we expected but it was fun. It wasn’t tough to find our hotel or parents as there was only three streets on the island- front, middle, and back street! We all went out exploring that evening and we ran into a guy named Benedict. He was saying “Daddy, you have such a beautiful family and beautiful girls. Come feed them the best lobster in town! Come, we have the best table for you guys!” We decided to give it a try. Well the “best table” was a picnic table but the location was just what I was craving - a little straw covering above the table, sandy ground, and a view of the ocean….a constant reminder that I was now on vacation! The food was good as well. We tried conch fritters as an appetizer and enjoyed our first of many tasty fresh seafood meals.

Thursday, November 18, 2010


Today during my lunch hour I laced up my running shoes and ran from my office in Lisle. The Morton Arboretum is just about a 5 minute run away. I had run here before from my office. I went through the first gate I got to- which was the exit but I was running so I figured that it didn't really matter if I went through the exit. When i was into the park I continued on the path that leads around the park. I then heard a car behind me. i went to the shoulder of the path but the car didn't go by. So I kept running. The car put its flashers on and pulled up next to me and told me that I needed to leave the park and that they saw me illegally try to sneak in. I was very confused until he told me that there is an 11 dollar entrance fee! He escorted me out of the park...OOPS! I loved running there but 11 dollars for a run is out of my price range! :)

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Only boy

Jeff came into town. He is leaving tomorrow for his interview in San Diego. When I got home from work we went out for dinner at a wine bar called Salute. I had a coupon for the place: 25 dollars off of a tab of 35 or more. Anyway we got dinner and wine and were having a good time but I looked around and realized the whole restaurant was full of girls and Jeff was the only boy! I pointed this out to Jeff and we felt more and more out of place- guess it was girls night out and we missed the memo! Good think Jeff grew up with 4 sisters! :)

Saturday, November 13, 2010

Ann Arbor Weekend

I went to Ann Arbor for the weekend. I hadn't been there in a long time. It was good to see Jeff's family. We had lunch with his Grandma, we went to Jeff's brother's hockey game, Jeff's sister's Dance performance, and I went wedding dress shopping with Jeff's mom, sister, and Grandma. Fun times!

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Trick or Treat Trot

This morning Jeff and I did the Trick or Treat Trot 10k. I was first place overall for the women and Jeff won his age group.

After the 10k we had pre-marital counseling which was good.

Then we just did a bunch of wedding much to do!

Sunday, October 31, 2010

Planetarium...halloween party

I won some tickets to the Alder Planetarium at a 5k so Jeff and I went to see "The Journey to the Stars." It was pretty neat. That evening we had a bunch of friends over for a haloween party. It was a blast!

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The best house husband ever! : )

This week I was working as normal- but the difference was that Jeff came to visit. It was GREAT! Jeff fixed my bike, finished some wedding stuff for me, did some cleaning, grocery shoping, went to the post office. He was so helpful! It was really nice because then when I got home at 6 we could just have fun together...such as go to a good bye party for my friend Claudia who is moving to San Fran :(

Saturday, October 23, 2010

Go Go Green 5k

This morning I did a 5k...and I won with a time of 17:55. It was very fun. I just biked from my house to the race start. It was no pressure. My mile splits were 5:40, 5:50, 5:40- So pretty consistent. There was a girl from Grand Valley who was gaining on me the last mile but I knew I had to hold her off because the prize for first was REI gear and both Jeff and I LOVE that store. Anyway, ends up that vitamin water was another one of the sponsors so I also won a case of vitamin water. This was cool until I realized that I had biked to the race and now had a case of vitamin water to carry (along with a tent from REI). I took all the waters out of the case and put them in my back pack - all 24 of them! I then had one of the hardest bike rides of my life :)

Later that day I went with my roommate and her mom to go look at wedding dresses. We walked to the car and the window of her mom's car had been smashed! Fortunately there was nothing of value in the car but it did take us awhile to find a place to get a new window put into the car. We did make it to the bridal stores...and I am starting to get an idea of what I like..but still no purchase :)

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

New Job

It has been awhile since I have posted! I started doing some consulting work for a company in Lisle. I have enjoyed the new job but it has been hour+ commute in both directions and lot's of work when I am there. I actually have been enjoying the train ride. I take my breakfast and mail onto the train in the morning and in the evening I usually talk to Jeff. It's a nice ride. Another thing I just discovered is that my new work is right by the Morton Arboretum...I ran here during lunch yesterday and I just LOVED it!

Monday, October 18, 2010

Pumpkins in the Park - 5k

It was the perfect fall day for a 5k. I placed second overall but definitely didn't feel very smooth or good during the race. Oh well- it was fun. I had forgotten how much I liked these shorter distances.

After the race I went over to Beth's for dinner with a few other people that had volunteered or ran the race.

Friday, October 15, 2010


Thanks everyone for being supportive about my decision to drop out of the marathon. I really appreciated the emails and comments I received. I will keep you posted on when I will race next. I was planning on doing a marathon soon after Chicago but although I didn't complete the race, the day left me feeling physically not tired but emotionally very drained. Since running the marathon really does take so much desire and "umph" to do your best I really need to feel excited to compete. Right now, I feel burnt out. I feel like I would be going into the race with a "let's get this over with" attitude. That's just not normal for me. This is my hobby and I am a competitive person- I need to feel that joy and drive before I step on the line. I will keep you posted. I start a new engineering job on Monday. I'm pretty nervous about that so right now so I am just focusing on running as a way to stay grounded and put things in perspective. I always feel at ease when I get back from a run :)

Sunday, October 10, 2010


I woke up at 4AM to eat a bagel with peanut butter (it's best to eat 3-4 hours before the marathon so you don't have digestive issues). My friend Beth picked Kelly and I up at 6AM. I was in the elite development tent which made for a less stressful pre-race because you are in the tent with your teammates and they take good care of you and lead you to the start when it is time to go. I felt good on the warm-up. We only went for 10 minutes because it was warm out so there wasn't much need to "warm-up". When the gun went off everyone was flying by me. I thought I was starting conservative but my first mile was 6:07 oops! I tried to settle in but the crowd support was so amazing that I couldn't seem to run slow enough. Every 2 seconds someone would yell my name and I would be so excited and start to speed up! Well after a bit the heat started to creep up and my times started to slow...until instead of hitting 6:20's I was running 6:40. After the half way mark it just wasn't looking like I was going to get the standard of 2:46. I had to make a decision- do I want to run a slower marathon and have that be the end of the season or do I want to be able to give it another try. I decided around mile 15 that I didn't want to just finish- I wanted a chance to reach the goal that I was going for. At that point I stopped but I was pretty far west so I had to cut over a street in order to get back (this cut about a mile off)..therefore when people saw me next I looked like I was doing amazing! Jeff hopped in and started running with me and I said I was going to stop at mile 18 where I knew I had some friends. Jeff was so confused saying- what? You are running so well! I explained that I had stopped and hopped back in the race. Anyway- it was a terrible feeling to drop out. I haven't ever done that and I had no idea it would feel so bad to stop before the finish line. I know that I did the right thing though and my Coach was very happy with me. It still doesn't feel so great though. It was fun to hang out with a LOT of Calvin people after the race. Many of my friends had a great first marathon experience!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Elite Athlete Press Conference

Post to come- it was SWEET talked to Deena Kastor, Ryan Hall...watched the interview of the top three finisher in the marathon.

(Deena Kastor is on far right of picture)

Friday, October 8, 2010

runner tracking

Hi friends and family. My race number is 484 (if I was superstitious I would be really excited date:10-10-10, qualifying time 2-4-6, bib number 4-8-4, age 2-4 : ) Bank of America has a runners tracking system so you can sign up to get text messages with my time at certain locations. You can sign up here:

Thursday, October 7, 2010

interviewed for WGN- 9

The little kiddo that I was going to watch was sick today so I had the day off. I met for a run with my friend Beth for a run in the morning. Then in the afternoon I went to a high school / middle school cross country race. The kids were so great. I loved watching the expressions on there faces. It also put thing in perspective. I have come along way in my running! The winner of the junior high 2 mile race ran the pace I will attempt to run for 26.2 on Sunday : ) (The Olympic Trails qualifying time is 6:20/mile)

After that race I biked over to Nike Town where I met Joan Benoit Samuelson and was interviewed with Heather. We will be on Channel 9. I am not sure what time yet though. Joan was awesome. She was such a running pioneer. She is 53 years old and when she first started running, women weren’t allowed to run the marathon! It was said that it would do bodily harm and you wouldn’t be able to have children : )

After that Heather and I headed to a restaurant to meet Coach Leach and Matt to talk over race strategy.

interviewed for ABC news

The little kiddo that I was going to watch was sick today so I had the day off. I met for a run with my friend Beth for a run in the morning. Then in the afternoon I went to a high school / middle school cross country race. The kids were so great. I loved watching the expressions on there faces. It also put thing in perspective. I have come along way in my running! The winner of the junior high 2 mile race ran the pace I will attempt to run for 26.2 on Sunday : ) (The Olympic Trails qualifying time is 6:20/mile)

After that race I biked over to Nike Town where I met Joan Benoit Samuelson and was interviewed with Heather. We will be on Channel 6. I am not sure what time yet though. Joan was awesome. She was such a running pioneer. She is 53 years old and when she first started running, women weren’t allowed to run the marathon! It was said that it would do bodily harm and you wouldn’t be able to have children : )

After that Heather and I headed to a restaurant to meet Coach Leach and Matt to talk over race strategy.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Breakfast Club

Today I met at the track in the early morning along with a whole bunch of other crazy people. It was still dark out. The workout was an all out mile, 1200, and 800. It was quite a shock to the system! I ran 5:30 for the mile. This was not as good as I hoped- it was nearly the same time that I ran last year. It will have to do. Coach said I looked amazing so that was good to hear. I have decided to run the marathon. I am going to do my best and hope that everything goes well. I am excited. I have predetermined that I am going to have a great race all the way to the very end! The mind can do amazing things! :)

Sunday, October 3, 2010


I watched my favorite 2.5 year old. I hadn't seen her in awhile and I was greeted with "eennaa!" and little arms around my legs. She was so fun. We collected pine cones for awhile, collected yellow leaves, took a ton of drinks from the drinking fountain (she has a fascination with pushing the button :)...everything we did her doll had to do as well. We practiced walking backwards and hoping. Then we ran! Yep. She loves to run! She ran 6 blocks without stopping! So cute!

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Makin' Tracks 5k

After a poor night of sleep I headed out to the Makin' Tracks 5k. It was a cool crisp morning. The weather totally reminded me of Cross Country season which put me in a good mood. The race went off and I soon found myself alone running through the tree lined streets of River Forest. I felt smooth and fast. I was totally in the moment and enjoying running. It was quite a windy day but I enjoyed the feel of pushing into the wind and how the wind was blowing my short hair back out of my face. As I approached the third mile the High School Marching band was playing, I had a sharp turn into the stadium where the High School Cheer team was lining the track. The race ended on the start line of the track so you got to finish by running 100 meters on the track. It was a blast! I hadn't raced since August and I had missed it! I ended up fist female with a time of 18:04. This was a confidence builder for me. Just what I needed.

After the race I went to Alona's for breakfast and then we went shopping for wedding ideas in Oak Park. After that I went to a friends barbecue. It was a busy day- but a good one :)

Life's been throwing me curve balls!

I've been nannying full time for the cutest little boys ever. The two boys are 4 months and 5 months. I really love them! However, Friday I got an engineering job offer to do some consulting work. The offer is really tough to turn down. I told my friend and employer on Friday because I thought she should know that I was considering this offer. As you can imagine she was quite upset...which me, having this terrible characteristic of feeling other peoples feelings and wanting everyone to be happy, felt even more terrible. This made for a teary and restless night.

Thursday, September 30, 2010

still not sure about marathon

Well on Sunday of this week it was a crisp fall day and I was just LOVING the sport of running. I was totally day dreaming about the marathon and I was doing super well in my day dream. Midway through my run a Loyola runner came up to me and started asking me for advice. I ended up running with her back to her campus and then turning around and running home. I enjoyed it.

Then on Monday I also was feeling quite up beat and was 90% sure that I should do the marathon.

Then today I saw that Joan Benoit Samuelson was doing the Chicago Marathon and was planning on running to get the B standard for the trial which would get her a world record in the 50-55 age group for the marathon. Sweet! That is perfect- stick to her 50 year old fast butt! Again feeling pretty sure I should do the marathon.

Then I read that Ryan Hall is not doing the marathon. His reason was that he had had a touch bout of training. His paragraph stating why he was not doing the marathon pretty much summed up why I was thinking I wouldn't- now this made me feel about 50% sure I should race the marathon.

Then I go to the track for 800's and run them all between 2:45-2:50 pace. This is not a good time for me. Coach tells me if he had to make a decision today he would say to delay the marathon. He just thinks something is not quite right. He thinks it isn't adult like to run a race if you aren't completely ready.

Sunday, September 26, 2010

Jeff is back from New Mexico!

Jeff came into Chicago on his way back from New Mexico. We did a 2 day marriage workshop at my church. It was good but the last day we were ready to get out and be outside. The picture is of Jeff's mountain cake that I made for him for his birthday! I might not see him the following weekend for his birthday.

Monday, September 20, 2010

not sure what to do

Training has not been going well. Although I have been doing a good job of trying to keep my spirits high it's time to really assess what I should do. I honestly don't think I am in the kind of shape i need to be to qualify. If my fitness doesn't come around with the taper I am not sure if I should run Chicago or delay until I feel better. (Oh I didn't post that I pulled my hamstring- that is one of my recent set backs). I will keep you posted to what my Coach and I decide. I really want to do Chicago but if I am not in the shape I need to be than it is stupid to put that kind of stress on your body and have to shoot for another marathon.

Friday, September 17, 2010

almost marathon day!

10-10-10 is approaching quickly! I only really have one week of training left and then it is taper time. I am starting to get nervous. When you train hard for an event you really want to have everything come together. There are a lot of things that are always up in the air- temperature, wind, illness, on day or off name it. Therefore I got to focus on the things that I can control. The most important- my attitude.

Although I am an inexperienced marathoner, I have had a good deal of experience in important races (nationals times 8). What I have learned is that you will run your best when you
a)remember that you have put in the work
b) stay calm
c) be curious and dream big

It's kind of like if you studied super super hard for a test and then went to school and the teacher was like- actually there will be no test. That wouldn't be cool. That's how you have to feel for a race if you are going to do well. In other words- I studied hard for this marathon and I want to be tested! :)

I started to feel a deal of stress about hitting an Olympic Qualifying time and I had to take a step back. If I am going to run well I cannot put pressure on myself instead I have to focused on enjoying my sport and being in the moment and letting the race just happen. Like everything in life- when you work hard and put yourself out there you feel much more since of accomplishment. 10-10-10 I'm ready for you! :)

I look forward to seeing a lot of people cheering and racing on 10-10-10. When I hear a familiar voice cheering or see a friend it is like getting a strong tail's weird but it really propels me forward :) !!

(PS- this was more of a pep talk to myself than anything else)

Sunday, September 12, 2010

chocolate milk, ice, a bath tub and wool socks?

Today was another 3 hour run! Before the marathon last year I had never ran more than 2.5 hours...and I had only run 2.5 hours once! Now I have run several 3 hour long runs. It's a confidence booster to have so many miles under my belt for sure. On my way back from a long run I stop and buy a bag of ice. I then fill a big glass with chocolate milk and stick a straw in it. I then strip down and put on wool socks. I then fill the bath tub with cold water and add the ice. Next I hop in. Then there is usually a scream from the pain of the cold water...the wool socks keep my feet and ankles warm while allowing the rest of my tired muscles to be iced. I then drink my chocolate milk in the freezing tub (an excellent recovery drink). I am sure this is a funny sight (if anyone ever saw me :). And NO I will not be posting pictures :)

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

feeling better

I am back to running after a couple days of loads of sleep, chicken noodle soup, vitamin D3, vitamin c, Elder Berry name it I took it :)

Monday, September 6, 2010


urg. I am sick. I hate the feeling of being sick. This is also not the best time to get sick as it is close to the marathon! I have to start taking better preventative measures to ensure that I stay healthy!

Sunday, September 5, 2010

Mom in town

My mom stayed with me over Labor Day weekend. We did LOTS of dress shopping and wedding planning. I have not found the perfect dress but the dress shopping experience was fun. We also saw a comedy show at Second City, got Ethiopian food, explored Andersonville and and Uptown. Oh and well my mom was in town my roommate got engaged! Now we will be wedding planning together :)

Saturday, September 4, 2010

good workout

I had my first good workout in WEEKS. I ran a tempo with Jesse (Calvin Alumn from men's team). We ran 8 miles at 6:08 pace. The great thing was that when we stopped at 8 miles I thought I could have easily done a few more miles at that pace! It was a great feeling to run with someone. Thanks Jesse!

Saturday, August 21, 2010

Waterfall Glen..Camille in town

This morning I went to waterfall glen to run trails with Beth L, Beth E, and Kalina. I had a really good time. It was so nice to get off of the lakefront and onto shaded trails.

Camille came into town on her way back to school. In the afternoon, Camille, Jenny, Tyler, Lisa, and I went to the Gold Coast Art Fair in Grant Park. Wow- there are so many creative people in this world! The fair was HUGE. We road our bikes there and back which was really fun. I hadn't ever ridden through the city streets with a group. It's pretty intense.

Friday, August 20, 2010

Paint Party!

Tonight I had some people over for a barbecue and to paint. Lisa and I have a long hallway with track lighting that reminds me of an art gallery so we decided (or Lisa put up with my crazy idea) to have a party to paint canvases and put them up in the hallway. However, I had never made burgers myself and it didn't occur to me that the meat would shrink so the burgers ended up being so small that we had to put 2 burgers on each bun! :) It was hilarious. Everyone enjoyed painting and there were some good laughs.

Thursday, August 19, 2010


I got in to Northwestern's Prosthetics Program! SO EXCITED!!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Kelly in town!

Kelly was in the suburbs of Chicago for a wedding. She drove downtown to meet me for a run....felt like old times :) Thanks for making the trek into the city and for waking up at 5AM to get to the city!

Pam in town!

Pam is back in Chicago! She is staying with me until she finds an apartment. We made dinner, got ice cream, and watched a movie.

Monday, August 16, 2010

4 doctors and me

3 of Jeff's friends from Med school came up today. We had a good time. We all went for a run together. We did some water skiing and we played an awesome set of Tennis. All the games were very close...but Jeff and I lost. I don't think I have ever played Tennis with 3 (future) surgeons :)

Friday, August 13, 2010

Crawford weekend

This weekend confirmed that Jeff and I are meant for each other (okay already knew that). We both love games and couldn't get enough of it. We played whiffle ball (in which I had some good line drives :), ultimate Frisbee (so fun), badminton (not so good at this one), ran, boat ride, cards...a complete day of competition :) I was the only girl competitor but that okay.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Dinner and a run with pals

Had a great time going on a run with Alona and Holly and then having dinner with Alona, Holly, and Lisa.

Trip to GR for Haagsma wedding

I left on Friday evening with Mel and Laura to head to GR. The trip went smoothly. We got in late and went right to bed. It was fun to chat with Mel and Laura.

On Saturday I went for a run around Reed's lake to do my LTV (the workout I explained in another entry). I am pleased to announce that I upped my LTV distance from 4 miles to 7 miles!! That was exciting.

Okay now to the important part of this post HAAGSMA'S wedding... I had a great time! It was so fun to see people that I hadn't seen in a VERY long time (such as Calah, Jon Gries, and Diemer (to name a few). Here are a few highlights from Kristin's wedding-
1. Her place card numbers were bib numbers (I thought that was very clever)
2. The first dance- absolutely hilarious. Kristin and George had a whole choreographed dance and the whole wedding party jumped in.
3. Playing bean bags with Anika
4. George's Grandma trying to teach people Irish dancing.

It's the little touches that make you remember someones wedding. I hope I can think of little thinks that will make my wedding me!

Thanks for the great party Kristin!!

Friday, August 6, 2010

Elvis is Alive

details to come! fun time....just done as workout.

Monday, August 2, 2010

Lynn in town

Lynn Marsh came to visit me- I was her last stop on her trek back from California. We went for a run and had breakfast with Jenny. During the day I went to RIC and Lynn and her roommate explored the city. In the evening we made dinner and watched a movie. It was great to catch up.

(Lynn took a picture of my U lock for my bike because bikes were stolen that didn't have the U lock)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Summer class is over- ya!

Selling a TV

When I moved into my apartment there was a TV by the garbage. The TV looked nicer than mine so I dragged it into the apartment. The TV worked great but didn’t have a built in DVD player like the one I had so I decided to sell it. I posted it on craigslist for 20 bucks and had a buyer. The lady called and said she would be over at 8:45 and she didn’t have a cell phone so just to be outside at 8:45 with the TV. I went to move the TV and it was really heavy. I was the only one home so I had to figure out a way to get it down the 5 flights of stairs. I ended up putting it on a small rug and pushing it down the stairs slowly- this took awhile and I was sweating by the end. I then ran back up stairs to get the remote. As I was up there I hear this voice yelling at my building “Hey C! Christina! Yo C!” I look out my window and this large lady is yelling up at my building- wow never had someone yell at my building before :) I open up my window and yell back down “be right there” and she yells back up “Coo” (like cool but without the “l”). I then recruited random guy to help me lift the TV into the back of a Taxi for the lady and she gave me the money. What an experience! : )

Friday, July 30, 2010

Jeff's Half Ironman and Indian food

Today I carpooled to Michigan to watch Jeff’s half ironman. We left at 5 AM. It was raining sooo hard! We were worried about all the athletes. I saw Jeff come out of the water, leave on his bike, get back from his bike, ran with him for some of the run, and watched him finish. It was actually quite a workout for myself as a spectator. Jeff did very well- a PR! Unfortunately, we both got sunburned pretty bad : ( When we got back to Chicago Jeff and I went out for Indian food. We then rented a movie which I guess I fell asleep during the first 10 minutes- guess I was tired!

Thursday, July 29, 2010

Marathon training

Well the marathon is less than 12 weeks away now! My coach is friends with Coach Vigil (former coach of Deena Kastor). He called Coach Vigil for suggestions on my training and the result was a new 12 week plan that is going to be rough! However, I love the challenge. I have a workout called an LT-V every week. This workout is done at the pace that you can run an all out mile + 40 seconds. The goal is to sustain this pace for as long as possible. When you can't sustain the pace you have to stop. So far I can sustain this pace for 4 miles- this is not going to cut it. Hopefully by the marathon I can sustain this pace for 8 miles. I will keep you posted on that : ) Each week also consists of a long run, a speed workout of a distance less than 400 meters repeats, a speed workout of less than 5k distance repeats, a core workout (focusing on improving running form), a strength workout (done with bands), and a power workout (jumping, skipping, etc.)...whew! Olympic trials here I come : )

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Jammin' at the Shedd

What a fun day! Laura and I met Jenny Z for a run in the AM and then Jenny came over for breakfast. I tried a new recipe and it was pretty tasty. Afterwards, Alona and Laura and I biked to the beach and took a dip (it was REALLY cold so swimming would not be the right word). Then we came back and played wii for alittle bit. Around 5 Laura and I biked over to the Shedd Aquarium with Laura. We met Mel and Tyler at the Shedd. They have this event on Wed. nights where they play Jazz at the aquarium. So we got a drink and perused the exhibits while listening to Jazz. It was a cool experience. We left and got Thai food and then came back to see the fireworks. Then we biked back. It was neat to see the view of the city in the dark. Here is a picture of my favorite fish...Toad Fish : )

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Holtrop in Chicago!

Laura Holtrop arrived from Peru today! It was so fun to have her in town. Alona had been wanting to go to her favorite deep dish place before she leaves Chicago at the end of the month. This provided a great oportunity to do this. We had a lot of fun hearing about her trip to Peru and catching up.

Sunday, July 25, 2010


It was a nice day at Torch. Jeff, Dave, and Mr. C and I went on a pretty bike ride through farm land with views of the lakes. I also went water skiing and wakeboarding. Fun times! Jeff drove me to Grand Rapids where I carpooled back to Chicago with Haagsma (I have to call her Haagsma because she will no longer be Haagsma next week! She will be married!)

Saturday, July 24, 2010

The Culminator

Today Jeff and Dan and Paul planned to do a workout they called the "Culminator" (which I wrongly kept calling the Terminator : ) because it culminated their training for the half ironman next weekend. The workout was to swim across Glen Lake, then bike around the lake and up pierce stocking two times, and then run 8 miles...umm ya- they are crazy : ) I watched them start their swim and then I went for an AMAZING long run. I explored all the trails in Allegator Hill and I ran up Pierce Stocking (a seven mile climb). Afterwards, we had some lunch and headed to Torch Lake. The Crawford's took all of us "kids" out for dinner. We had a great time.

Friday, July 23, 2010

Dinner with Grandma and Grandpa and drinks up north

Today I headed to Kalamazoo. My grandparents picked me up from the train station and Jeff met us at their home. We had a great time catching up. Grandpa made a lot of tasty food from his own garden (salsa, grilled peppers, pod peas...etc.). It was great to see them! When we got up north we went to Art's Tavern with friends. We slept at Dekorne's and all the guys were crammed in one room and I had the guest bedroom with a queen sized bed. Kind of nice being the only girl for the weekend : )

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Fleet Feet Women's Festival 10k

This morning was the Women's Festival. This year the weather was the worst- sooo humid. Heather picked me up at 6:15 except what we didn’t realize until that morning was that the parking lot closed at 6:30. We got there right before 6:30 but the off ramp was backed up with people going to the race…eek! We were a little worried but we were one of the last people let in and got one of the last slots- phew! It was hot and humid for the race. Looking back on it I am kind of disappointed at my finish. I ran 30 seconds slower than last year in the 10k. It was much worse weather but I still feel like I didn’t push myself hard enough. I got second place for the third year in a row. The prize was a heart rate monitor which I already have.. (but I already sold it for 50 dollars : ). I also got these pretty flowers. That’s one perk for a women’s race. Holly and Daryl drove Alona and I back from the race and then we showered at my place before heading over to church. What a nice little morning!

Saturday, July 17, 2010


Today I babysat for a new family. I should have realized these kids were going to be into imagination because there parents work at the theater. I arrived and I was like “Hi, I’m Christina” and the little 3 year old was like “No, you’re not Christina. You’re a mama barracuda chasing me through the forest!” The whole night was like this. It was interesting.

Friday, July 16, 2010

Thai Festival

Today Alona and I went to the Thai Festival downtown. We met our friend Meg over her lunch hour. We got some good Thai food and we also saw some very impressive fruit carvings!

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Firefighters 5k

Tonight was the firefighters 5k. I was babysitting until 5PM and the race started at 6:30...however, public transportation is not very reliable and I ended up arriving only 20 minutes before the start of the race! It was a very hot day (like 90 degrees!). I won the race and only 5 boys beat me : ) I had a great time!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

dinner party

Tonight we had a full house! Kristin returned from her Calc class and Jeff returned from his Clinical Skills test. Alona had a couple of friends over as well. Alona and Eileen (who is in culinary school) cooked a buckwheat soba noodle dish with grilled tofu and collard greens from the Moosewood cookbook. We all had a great little evening…I think Jeff did the majority of the talking : ) Jeff had to head back to Ann Arbor that night : ( Later that evening I sat down to take a timed exam for psychology and Kristin went to move her car closer since parking is free after nine pm in front of my place. She came back and told me that she could not find her car. I thought she just didn't know where it was so I went down to show her where her car was....and it was gone! I didn't know what we should do- so we called 911. I assumed that the car had been stolen. It ended up that her car was toed. I am still confused as to why it was no parking when there was no sign indicating that :( It was such a pain. However, she got it back...but paid a pretty penny for it :( What a way to taint a fun trip to the city!!

Monday, July 12, 2010

Kristin and Jeff in Chi-town

Kristin picked me up from the airport yesterday night and spent the night and this morning I went to RIC and Kristin went to Loyola to learn to teach AP Calculus. Jeff got into town around 3PM. We went and swam in lake michigan! It was really fun and it wasn't that cold. Around 5pm Kristin got back and we all went for a short run together. I made mexican for dinner. It was really fun!

World Cup

This morning we went all went to church together. Then we went back to our hotel and went swimming and played ping pong. When we checked out I got a free Venti coffee specialty drink because our TV hadn’t worked the night before. I was really excited about my free beverage because I haven’t had a coffee specialty drink in months! We all got together to watch the Netherlands vs. Spain world cup game (we are all Dutch so you can bet who we were rooting for : ).

(Grandma and Grandpa with the first great grandson)

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Devil's Peak

This morning I woke up early to go for a run. I had a map of a loop that went through Cherry Creak Park that I was excited to check out. However, I got a little lost and ran alittle farther than I was thinking! Later in the day I went with my cousins and Aunts and Uncles to climb Devil’s Peak. It was a fun hike however right when we got to the top there was a thunder storm so we hurried into this little house on the top of the mountain that was grounded to wait out the storm. It was pretty exciting to be on the top of a mountain in a thunder storm. That evening we went over to my Aunt and Uncles for pizza and salad. I was in heaven because one of my aunts had made three pies with fruit from there trees- sour cherry pie, strawberry rhubarb, and peach. Yummy! I got to play with my cousin’s little 2 year old. He and I had a great time : )

Friday, July 9, 2010

60th Wedding Anniversary

This morning I flew to Denver for my Grandpa and Grandma’s 60th Wedding Anniversary Party. My Grandpa and Grandma really went all out for there party. It was at the country club with an open bar and sit down steak dinner. They had a neat slide show that went through there whole life together. My Grandpa also told the story of how they first me. I enjoyed sitting at the cousin’s table and reminiscing on all the fun times we have had. What a nice party!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010


Alona and I had a trip to the Unemployment Office. Man was I glad we both had to go so we could go together! This office was in a bad neighborhood and Alona and I stuck out as the only people who had had dental care. Everything went smoothly. I hadn’t received unemployment since I started taking a psychology class online. The guy told me that online classes were okay so I was cleared. The people at the office were knowledgably and I had to show them a document showing what jobs I had applied for and what people I had contacted about networking.

Sunday, July 4, 2010

rollerblade run and fireworks

This morning my Dad and I did our traditional Sunday morning rollerblade run…however with a little bit of a twist….getting video taped for the documentary! It was fun. It was a hot day so by the end of the run we were pretty beat. We had some breakfast burritos and headed to Church. After church we stopped by Mel’s and got my chair. We carried it a half mile back to my apartment- gotta love city carless living : ) The time went by too quickly and my Dad had to leave.

(check out the video trailer of my dad and I)

That evening Alona had a couple friends over and made dinner for all of us. We then went and watched the firework show at Navy Pier.

Saturday, July 3, 2010

4 on the third and Chicago Film Tour

This morning I got up at 4:30AM to take the train to Oak Park where Alona picked me up and we headed to Elmhurst for the 4 on the third race. Everyone went out really fast but I was able to hold back and run my own race. This worked out well. I was the 8th girl at 1.5 miles but then slowly started to pick people off. It felt great to pass people the whole race. I ended in fourth which was kind of a bummer because I was right with third place. She started ahead of me on the line so chip time I beat her but gun time she beat me. However, this race was really an exciting race for me because I felt much smoother and stronger over the course of the run than I have for a long time. I am starting to feel like myself again!

After the race, I went back home and my dad had made a lot of progress without me. I thought he would sleep in a lot because of taking the red eye the night before but he had been awake for awhile when I got back. Later that day we went on the Chicago Film Tour. This tour was my father’s day gift to him. I enjoyed the tour. I had never driven through many of the neighborhoods that we drove through. It was fun to watch clips from different films and then see the actual location in Chicago.

Friday, July 2, 2010

Dad arrives

This morning my Dad came into town to help me get situated in my new apartment. It was more fun to unpack than it was to pack. It was nice to have my Dad’s good and helpful company. That evening we went to Bonsouri- A contemporary French restaurant in Logan Square. The dishes were beautiful and had things like tiny mushrooms and rainbow colored cauliflower….but it was too expensive!

Thursday, July 1, 2010

first night in new apartment

Move in went well! For the first night in our apartment Alona and I made pizza and watched Avatar. Fun night.

Wednesday, June 30, 2010


today was move out day! Tyler went to the Uhaul to help me rent the Uhaul. Holly and Wendy met me back at my apartment. It was quite the ordeal. All my belongings didn't fit into the truck! We left a few things at my apartment. I then drove to Oak Park to Alona's to store the Uhaul and sleep over at Alona's. It was nice to spend that night with a family and have a home cooked meal! Thanks so all my friends for helping me make moving out possible!!

The next morning I woke up really early and took the train back into the city. I did some last minute cleaning and then Tyler and Jenny came over with there car and took a load of stuff that didn't fit into their car. However, one chair wouldn't fit into their car so I ran that over to Mel's to store it there. The check out went well- I got my whole security deposit back!!

I then went over to Alona's. Alona had made a fiest of salmon, corn on the cobb, chips and guac, cole slaw, and apple crisp. Yumm. I was so relieved to have the move out complete. I slept like a rock.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

new film trailer

New film trailer. Check it out. I love the background music.

off to pick up my Uhaul with Tyler.

10 W. Elm

I am feeling sad. I will miss 10 W. Elm! It has been my favorite apartment I have lived thus far in my live. 2 blocks from the water, 1 block to grocery, 1 block to starbucks, 3 blocks to church, view of hancock, 5 minutes to running store...french doors, huge bedroom, light and open....ahhhh I will miss it! This is the end of the "living alone, working for Corporate america" chapter. Now I have a one year chapter of "student (hopefully), roommate, living simply, planning wedding, training for marathon." Then there will be "first year of marrage chapter/ residency" So you can look forward to the next few chapters of "Engi-Runner Girl" :)

Friday, June 25, 2010

new and exciting

This has been quite the month of learning for me. I thought I grew out of "the joy of learning" phase of life around 5th grade but apparently it goes in phases and I find that I am really enjoying learning new things every day at RIC. In addition, working with people makes for very entertaining days. Here are some of the interesting things I have seen so far: a man who lost his legs due to H1N1, a lady who lost her legs due to toxic shock, the cutest one year old from Greece which we fit with an upper arm prosthesis, a bilateral AK (above knee) who has done several Ironman Triathlons, a little hispanic boy who was born with his foot at his knee, a man who lost his leg working on the turbine of a powerplant (the equipment I was designing in my last job!), a man with a shoulder disarticulation who we made a nerve impulse controlled shoulder and arm unit.......the list goes on…

Thursday, June 24, 2010

RIC P&O Picnic

Well I should be cleaning my apartment but I got distracted with food coloring...I think I am ready for our Rehab Institue of Chicago Picnic tomorrow

Monday, June 21, 2010

A2 weekend

I had a great weekend with Jeff. We went to the Tiger's game on Saturday night. There was a firework show after the game which was really good! On Sunday we went for a nice run on the trails and then went to Church with Jeff's mom and sister and then went out to lunch. That afternoon we hung out at the pool. Ted, Jeff's roommate, had made a Korean Feast with his girl friend the night before and let us taste all of his interesting and delicious food. yumm!


Thursday, June 17, 2010

Jim Gibbons 5k

Tonight I did the Jim Gibbons 5k. I always like the week night races. It was fun because the weeknight races bring in a lot of people that work in the loop. Considering I used to work in the loop I hadn’t seen a lot of these people for awhile. At the start of the race I stayed by the first girl but after about a half a mile the pace felt so slow so I moved ahead. I always don’t allow myself to look at my watch until after the first mile but the first mile never came! They didn’t put the mile markers on the course. That really through me for a loop. I think my first mile was a bit slow though. At the turn around I heard a familiar voice yell “GO PUNK!!!” I turned and looked and it was Mel! That had me running with a smile on my face for the rest of the race. I am pretty sure I sped up the last mile because I was passing a lot of people. There was a small hill at the finish and then right when you get to the top is the finish. I won by about a minute and a half with a time of 18:07. Not a very fast time but nothing beats the feeling of breaking the finish line tape. Afterwards I caught up with a bunch of folks, had some food, and a free beer…and I left with a check that will pay for my bus ticket to Michigan and back this week, and food. Nice!

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Diemer Run .. Couples Shower

Morning came to early. I was definitely sick when I woke up but I was already registered for the race so no backing out. I did not run fast but I did run fast enough to get me 60 dollars which made for a break-even weekend : ) It was very fun to see so many old friends. After the race I met a girl who participated in the paraolympic games. She is going to go to train at the Olympic Training camp in Colorado for the summer. When I got back from the race I had a facebook friend request from her so now I will be able to keep in contact with her and see how her Olympic training is coming.

(with Coach Diemer and Bergstrom...I go back to Grand Rapids and I feel so short : )

After the race we went over to Ben Hammers and watched the World Cup. Jeff came and picked me up later and we went to Dan and Karyn's couples shower. They had lots of yard games out and I had a great time. but- I lost my voice! This made it difficult to communicate : )