Tuesday, January 31, 2012

diy expert

Good morning! I'm super excited today because I'm bringing back Laura from Beauty & the Beard. For last week's Friday Fancies post we were randomly linked up and I was thrilled. I adore her blog. Laura is absolutely a DIY queen. I'm so inspired by her! I asked her to write a guest post for me on some of her DIY projects to give me and all of you some inspiration and a few tips!


Dearest readers of Run Dream Cook...we meet again! 

    Yes, you thought you'd seen the end of me last Friday for my Friday's Fancies blog swap post, but I'm back! If you all haven't been by my blog Beauty & the Beard- in my posts I usually am sharing my DIY projects & recipes (with a lot of sarcasm, may I add). I was thrilled and flattered when Julie asked me back to share with you all my DIY Inspiration! 

    First of all, let me start this post off by saying I am no Martha Stewart. I'm wayyy too messy to be like Martha. If she saw my craft table on any given day I think she'd faint on the spot. That being said, although I may not be so coiffed and soft-spoken, I love coming up with cheap, easy, fun crafts. My favorite place to get inspiration is Pinterest, and I'm sure I'm not alone on this. I have a special board dedicated to crafts and recipes I absolutely must try- whether they seem easy or difficult. That way when I go back to that board when I'm in the mood to create- I can decide how committed and involved I want to be each time with a range of ideas.

   For example, I saw this easy tape art project on Pinterest:

I loved the idea and thought it would be even better as a triptych, so I grabbed a few canvases and and ended up with this:
See the whole post HERE
Is what I ended up with wildly different than the inspiration? No. Did I still make it my own? Yes. Crafts like this are great because they are simple, but still leave you with a sense of accomplishment, and feeling like you can take on bigger projects.
     I love getting inspiration from Etsy as well. I'm a big fan of supporting local artists, or small businesses, and Etsy is all that rolled up in a website. I do purchase things from artists- but sometimes I see amazing things with absolutely ridiculous price tags. This always motivates me to make a better, cheaper version. One particular craft I found was this awesome string and nail Texas piece...that had a price tag of $60 + shipping!

    I knew this couldn't cost a penny over $5 to make, and it absolutely didn't. A bit of wood, acrylic paint, paneling nails, and embroidery floss later I was left with this:
Find the whole post on this HERE
Is it as perfectly uniformed as the inspiration piece? No. Did it cost less than $60? Yes. ($4 I think!)

    As you can see, sometimes I take the inspiration and work literally with it- essentially trying to mimic their techniques. The more and more I DIY, the more and more new ideas I come up with for my own crafts- recently I had a day off and out of nowhere decided to paint a tree on a wall to hang my statement necklaces from...Man, was my boyfriend surprised when he came home that night! Here are a few of my favorite DIY projects:
Rainbow Polka Dot Phone Case (Found HERE)
Drink themed Scrabble Coasters (found HERE)

Paint Chip Christmas Cards (found HERE)
Marbleized ornaments (found HERE)
Painted Jewelry Tree (found HERE)
    I really think one of the big parts of crafting is accepting the fact you aren't going to be perfect right off the bat. No one is born with the ability to paint perfect lines or dream up epic colorful murals (Unless you're Martha, of coures). It takes times to figure out what your niche is, and what inspires you-  and the only way to do that is trial and error. I've had plenty of failed attempts at projects, but then again I've had some amazing outcomes- all by just jumping in and trying it. I love looking at other blogs, websites, Pinterest boards, and Etsy shops to appreciate the creativity of others- which in turn inspires me to find my own creativity. If you need to, start small! Do crafts step by step you see on a website! The more and more you do you'll find yourself coming up with new ideas...and before you know it you'll be inspiring someone else with your work.

Thank you SO much to Julie for letting me on the blog again, and I truly hope you all stop by Beauty & the Beard if you like DIY crafts...and endless sarcasm. B&B has only been around for a few months, and I appreciate every single follower and comment I get! Thank you so much for your time!
xo, laura
psst, you can follow me on Pinterest with a click of this buttonFollow Me on Pinterest

Monday, January 30, 2012

run girl run

I did 12 miles yesterday. TWELVE miles. I'm sometimes surprised at myself. I've officially been running for a year now. I started c25k the last week in January last year. To say that I'm shocked that I've gone from struggling through that first week (only 2.1 miles!) to finishing my very first 12 mile run is a huge understatement.  I do take walk breaks, but I'm ok with that.

My socks love to run too. I'm kind of a doofus.
My run was kind of rough yesterday. At around 6.5 miles my left ankle started to scream at me. I was freaking out about it, how am I going to finish a half marathon in 4 weeks if I can't do 12 today?! *insert hyperventilating here* But then I gave myself permission to walk. It was magical. I had been maintaining 12 minute miles and I was doing fantastically, but I couldn't handle the pain. Once I took about a .25 mile walk break I was ready to go again. I was feeling ok and I finished all 12. Take that left ankle! Now today I'm pretty darn sore. My ankle is still freaking out at me a little, but I'm icing it and taking it easy today. I'm going to head to the gym just for some core strength training and leave off the cardio. I'll do a short speedy run tomorrow followed by some intense elliptical work if my foot/ankle let me.

I did lots of cuddling with the puppies when I got home. They were worn out after having lots of visitors this week, so they are loving cuddling with me on the couch. I ate my face off. A chicken salad sandwich, a pickle, tortellini, a few sweet potato fries and a bit of ice cream. Yup I'm pretty sure I ate most of the 2100 calories I burned off. But that's ok, long run days are "free" days.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

it's almost here!

The final countdown is here! I'm sitting here waiting for Mike to get here so we can go for our 12 mile run together. Four weeks from now I will be done with my first half marathon! I feel ready. I know I can tackle this goal and I'm ready to enjoy the time leading up to and following the race.

Mike and I are planning on 12 miles today, 6 next weekend, then our final long run will be 13 miles. Then we're planning a short and easy shake out run for the Sunday before we head to Florida. These are all in addition to the normal mid week runs that we've been doing since the summer. We leave on Wednesday the 23 and I get giddy just thinking about it!!
I've been overwhelmed with planning thoughts. What do I pack? The weather is a lot warmer than I anticipated, can I still wear the outfit I planned? Am I going to die in the humidity? Will the warmer weather really bring down my speed enough to worry about? Do I bring gels as a carry on? Can you bring empty water bottles in your carry on? How many different outfit choices should I pack? Is planning a beach day for Saturday really a good idea? What do you wear to the expo? I'm just freaking out a tiny bit.
Then I remember to take deep breaths and realize how much fun it is going to be!
I seriously can't wait!

Friday, January 27, 2012

a very special guest

Happy Friday! Today I have the pleasure of blog swapping with Laura from Beauty & the Beard. Be sure to head over to her blog to check out my post! 


Hello followers and lovers of run dream cook!

   My name is Laura and I'm the lady behind Beauty & the Beard. I was so excited to do the Friday's Fancies blog swap this week with Julie- and I think we've come up with a great theme! 

     Since it's wintertime, it can be kind of a bummer with all the dark colors that come out in the stores and the big, puffy coats that cover up all the fun fashion out there. Therefore, Julie and I decided to find ways this week to fight the Wintertime Blues- with either great blue items than can be worn all winter or ones that we look forward to getting back in during Spring! 

Here's the collection I came up with featuring great blue items to liven up your winter wardrobe:
1. This Paul Smith Wool Blazer is the perfect bright note for an evening out for drinks!
2.  Who says winter coats have to be black and boring? This Blue Bardot Neck Coat will brighten up any day walking through slush.
3. This SuperTrash bracelet is the best way to brighten your day when you're checking your watch to see what time it is!
4. If you've gotta wear a scarf to hide from the wind, why not make it a bold blue like this one?
5. Nothing will get you through a long, grey day at work like these Manolo Blahnik electric blue pumps.
6. Statement necklaces are a staple in every season, and this blue Plait Necklace is perfect for winter.
7. Nothing brightens up an outfit like a great, bold bag- this MiuMiu one is just the ticket! 

Hope these pieces inspire you to find ways to beat the Winter Blues! Make sure to stop by Beauty & the Beard to see Julie's collection - and while you're there check out the rest of the blog and follow along if you'd like!

Thanks for doing the swap with me Julie- who knew it would be such a great way to make blogger friends?

Thursday, January 26, 2012

one small rant.

I'm pretty addicted to Pinterest. I usually spend some time every evening unwinding while mindlessly browsing random pins and I really love it. I've even found tons of very inspirational pins that I adore on there. I find myself looking at different inspirational running slogans, which inevitably brings up countless "thinspiration" pins.
Now this is where I'm going to rant for a minute...I find them disgusting. Now I'm overweight, there is no arguing that, but I'm also working my butt off to get fit and healthy. I'm disturbed by the sentiment that "nothing tastes as good as skinny feels." That's just bullshit. There are thin women who are fit and healthy and are amazingly inspirational to me. But there are also women, more than likely the ones pictures in these "inspirational pins", who are either naturally thin or thin in a very unhealthy way. Until I started working out and running I assumed that my irrational anger toward that idea was mostly jealousy, but now I've lost 50 pounds and I feel the healthiest I ever have. I can pretty much say with certainty that I'm annoyed by the idea because it isn't rational. I've worked for a year now to lose weight and to keep it off. It isn't about just not eating a cookie. It's about changing how you view yourself, how you view the food you put in your body and the way it makes you feel.
Honestly, sometimes a cookie just feels really good.

Now that I'm done with my rant. I'd like to share some of my favorite inspirational pins.

While I LOATHE the signature (byebyechubbydays yuck) I love the concept.

Finishing the half will make me an official badass.

I heard Jennifer Hudson say the other day that whenever she gets the slightest urge to exercise she gets up and does it immediately without thought because otherwise the task gets daunting and overwhelming. I loved that because it is so true. It takes 2 minutes to get ready so just get out there and go when you have the smallest opportunity.

I'll be lapping them slowly, but I'm doing it. One little mile at a time!

This is one is my absolute favorite. I will be telling myself this for every single mile of the half marathon.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

fun fashion

One of my favorite things to browse on Pinterest is fashion. Whether it is bridal, formal, or just plain old every day clothes, I'm completely addicted! Over the past few weeks I've noticed that a ton of my facebook friends are now following me on Pinterest. It's almost odd since I don't talk to these people very often, but I guess they like my ideas, so the more the merrier...right?!

So now it is time to link up with Michelle from The Vintage Apple for this week's Oh! How Pinteresting! Link up!


Source: tumblr.com via Zachàry on Pinterest

Love this. Can Mike and I wear this in Disney without looking like total dorks? (I don't think so - but I adore it!)

Source: polyvore.com via Carrie on Pinterest

I'm in love with teal, and I own those earrings. Gorgeous!

Holy gorgeous yellow shoes. I adore these.

Source: polyvore.com via Kami on Pinterest

This would look awful on me but I LOVE it. Look at those shoes. Look at the gorgeous pink. This outfit is kind of perfection...on someone else.

Where do you wear this? I love it and I want to know so I can go there!

I love this. I want to wear it tomorrow...Ok maybe like 6 months from tomorrow...And I will look good in it by then. I will. I promise.

Buy me these?

Source: polyvore.com via Alana on Pinterest

Look at these shoes, they are SO fun! I want this outfit for Florida.

This dress is seriously gorgeous. The color combo is fabulous and I love a deep v!

Source: polyvore.com via Julie on Pinterest

And finally, I love this and I need every piece of this. I love the bag the most though. Mustard yellow with green?? That is seriously heavenly!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

on the horizon

My Disney race is less than 5 weeks away! While that means I'm getting nervous about the race, it also means that I'm getting super excited about going to Florida for a week! I'm really looking forward to a week in warm weather. It will be the first time Mike and I have gone away together. It'll also be the first time that I get to see my mom's new condo. She bought it almost two years ago now and I haven't gotten down there yet.
Now that winter has sort of arrived here in New York, and all of the spring/summer clothes have debuted in stores, I'm excited that I get to do a bit of shopping for my trip!
I've been doing a bit on online drooling during the day and these are a few things I've found.
This dress is from Express and I've been drooling over it for about a month now. I'm hoping for a
good sale!

This "coat" is fantastic. 3/4 sleeves in such a bright sunny color. So perfect
for springtime!

I actually already got this skirt. I love how it fits, although it is a tiny
bit longer than I'd prefer.

I need this dress. Talk about easy breezy! I love it.

Monday, January 23, 2012

happy monday!

After my snowy weekend and a very fun night watching the Giants win their game, I woke up feeling super refreshed and ready for the week.

I took my first snowy run on Friday evening. We got less than an inch of snow on Thursday night so I thought it was a good intro to snowy road running. It really ended up being more of a tutorial in running on sanded/salted roads. It was definitely different but not necessarily difficult. I'm used to running on pavement, which is solid under your feet. It took about a mile to get used to the sliding under my feet.

 I finally bit the bullet and read The Hunger Games. After everyone around the internet has read them and raved about them, I decided it was finally time. I spent my snowy Saturday curled up on the couch with hot tea and a kindle. It was glorious and I finished the first book and downloaded the second and got about 1/3 of the way through before I finally dragged myself up to bed. I read the rest of the second one on Sunday (I did stay up until 2am to do so) after the Giants game.

Mike wearing Devan's snowboarding helmet. A "rally cap" according
to my uncle!

Mom, Mike and I went and hung out at my aunt's house to watch the Giants game. I'm not a huge football fan but I definitely like a good party. I made a standing rib roast, mashed potatoes, peas and salad (and some chicken for myself). We hung around and chatted while football lovers watched the game.
All in all, one heck of a weekend!
Bring on the week <3

Friday, January 20, 2012

i'm inspired.

Friday! Wahoo! That's how I was feeling when I woke up this morning. This is the first time since October that I haven't been able to see my grass when I woke up. I'm totally loving this "dusting" of snow we got! Even more than that, we are expecting real snow this weekend. It will only be 3-6 inches but at least it's something! Bring on some snow! When I escape to Florida in February I really want it to feel like an escape from the cold.

This week's theme for Friday Fancies is outfit inspiration. I was stumped when I got the email from Alison with the theme but when I saw the weather forecast for today I knew exactly what outfit to pick. I've been drooling all over this Kourtney Kardashian picture since I saw it on Pinterest months ago. So in honor of my snowy morning, here is my version of this gorgeous look!


Hope you have a fabulous weekend! I'm really excited about a snowed in Saturday and then 6 white fluffy miles on Sunday!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

dog sitting

This week while my brother-in-law has been out of town, my little sister has been staying at my house with her dog, Addie. She's really a wonderful dog, but my oh my is she energetic! She's a black lap, greyhound mix and she looks exactly like you'd expect that to. She's tall, skinny and always moving. 

Meet Addie

Poor Sheldon and Cooper don't know what is going on. She will just come up to them while they're sleeping, get into play stance and bark once or twice to get their attention. It's adorable! I think my dogs love having a friend to play with all day but I think they'd also like to get a little more rest.

Cooper in his very handsome coat! I trimmed his bangs myself!

This is what Coop wants to be doing. That's his "blankie", he carries
it with him everywhere.
Sheldon has taken to hiding in places Addie won't go. She's afraid of laundry baskets, so that's where he will sleep.
By the way, he put that blanket in there himself, resourceful little pup!

What my house looks like every 5 minutes. They make SUCH a mess!