Wednesday, May 25, 2016

Dress refasion

I love thrift store shopping. I really also like buying dresses. I never seem to know what shoes to wear with dresses though. Anyways, I bought a dress at the thrift store that was fitted and had a very cute pattern. My mom and sister didn't like it as a dress though. I wasn't sure I disagreed so I decided to turn it into a shirt!
The dress had a lining and the overlay. I cut them both right around my hips. I allowed for a bit of overlay for the lining so I could sew up hem. I chose not to sew the hem for the overlay and instead used a fabric no fray to keep the fabric from falling apart.

Close up of the print
I have worn it several times and really love it as a shirt. I did get a comment about the edge being unhemmed so I am considering hemming it. What do you think? Hemmed or unhemmed? 

Tuesday, May 24, 2016

"New" used bicycle adventures

Look what I found at the thrift store!
Thrift Store Find

I am so excited to have a bike! I was able to score this for under $20! I knew it needed some work. I first cleaned all of the dust off the bike. Next I greased everything which required me to take a picture so I knew how to put the shifter back together. One of the tires was flat so I needed a new tube. I took the front tire to a shop and they helped me determine the tire was still good but I needed a new tube. I purchased another tube to change the rear tire I had left at home. DH and I were able to get the new tube on but the tire went flat almost immediately. Turns out there is an insulation layer between the spokes and the tubing that needed to be replace. I went back to the shop for another tube. In total the bike needed three new tubes, two new insulation strips, and some work. I have taken it out for several spins. I have realized a few things. First the bike is heavy since it is so old. Much heavier than other bikes made today. This makes me slower than everyone else. Second my gear shifters need some more work and I need to learn how to use them better. I am not sure if I will take the bike in or try and learn how to do it myself. Third, biking is a lot of fun and look forward to maybe biking to work this summer!

Cleaned up

Monday, May 23, 2016

Chocolate Cake

We have had chocolate icing in the freezer for a while now. I decided it was time to get it out of there to make more room for the delicious veggies we are growing in the garden. I decided to try and make a double layer chocolate and vanilla cake. The cake turned out pretty well and I have indulged enough. DH will be taking the cake to work tom. to force sweets on unsuspecting colleagues. 

Sunday, May 22, 2016

Denver 5 year Anniversary trip

Here are the highlights from our trip to Denver for our 5 year wedding anniversary.

Review of Alpha: A Black Flagged Thriller

Brief Summary:  "Alpha: A Black Flagged Thriller" by Steven Konkoly is an action packed thriller, filled with spies. 

Long Review: The story takes places along the East coast but primarily focuses on the Washington D.C. area. Multiple TLA government agencies are involved, CIA, FBI, NSA and Pentagon. The story starts out several years before the present with a take down by the lead character Daniel. The timeline then skips ahead to Daniel's now seemingly normal life. The book continues to follow Daniel as he is pulled back into work with an organization he thought he was done with. 

I found the book to be interesting as well as slow at times. I read the first few chapters and wasn't sure I would like the book. I read the next few and was able to put the book down. When I finally neared the end I had to finish the book. I did not appreciate the number of characters in various agencies. The operation the lead character Daniel works for isn't flushed out until the end complicating things as well. The book does keep the reader on their toes. I was wondering what was going to happen as there were not very many breadcrumbs left for the reader intuit what was going to happen later. I did appreciate that about this book. I do not foresee myself reading any further books in this series. I would recommend this book to a spy thriller enthusiast or a male as there are very detailed accounts of the cars and weapons used. 

Rating: 3/5

Other works by the author: Black Flagged Redux, Black Flagged Apex, Black Flagged Vektor

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Return to running and new goal

Hey all. After a week of taking it easy and a week of walking on vacation (upcoming post) I have returned to running. Yippy. I mainly run to keep my weight in check and after vacation I sure do need that. I am also trying to be mindful of what I put in my mouth as this is more important than getting exercise. I haven't gone back to counting calories quite yet. On to running news.

 I decided to sign-up for the Tulsa Route 66 Marathon. The race takes place the weekend before thanksgiving and I have the Friday before off. I am excited and nervous all at the same time. I changed my pace group so I will hopefully be ahead of the walkers and not have the opportunity to fall. The number of runners is set to 17K so it is a little smaller than OKC. I plan on lining up right with my pace flag and sticking with them as well. The weather should be cooler and make running much more comfortable. I would much rather run in cold than hot.

My training runs have been going alright. I am trying to increase my pace. I know I can run faster than 12 min/mile and have been consistent around 10:30-11:30 min/mile depending on how tired I am. I can definitely keep up a 10 min/mile pace for at least a mile. I am going to work on getting my pace to around 10:30 for the marathon in Nov. I am hopefully this is plenty of time. I trained for the Houston half at 10 min/mile. I wasn't able to keep up that pace but I think I will be able to stick to 10:30 if I start training now. I have found hills really help with my pace and will start those again soon. I am also hoping running after work in the heat of the day will help with pace when it starts to get cooler. I do look like a red monster when I run in the heat though. Oh well.

I am excited to continue my adventure to run a marathon and will of course keep updating my progress.

Wednesday, May 11, 2016

Book Review: Firefly Hollow by T.L. Haddix

Brief Summary: Sarah and Owen grow up in the same holler each with different family dynamics but love of a special place brings them together in the end. 

Long Review: Firefly Hollow was a quick read and great for traveling to and from the airport. I had to finish it the next night but only have a few chapters left. The series is set in Firefly Hollow and unlike other series does not follow a set of characters but the town. I read the first book Firefly Hollow about Sarah Browning and Owen Campbell. The Browning family is comprised of three children with Sarah being the middle child. She is kind and caring and gets picked on by her older sister Kathy. In her need for solitude she ranges onto the neighbor's land, which she has been forbidden from doing, and finds a secluded rock pool. 
Owen is rejected by his family because of special abilities and finds Sarah on his land. Instead of running her off he allows her to continue to visit as he sees the pool brings her peace and comfort. 
Sarah continues on with her life and leaves to become a teacher in college. When her father dies suddenly she returns to the special pool to seek solace. Owen again sees her there again and after so many years realizes his feelings for her. Not understanding and accepting of these feelings he leaves to seek the counsel of his Uncle. He eventually returns and starts to court the young feminist. Tragedy strikes the young couple's romance when Owen's Uncle's house catches fire. Owen leaves to help his family but neglects Sarah in the process. Sarah unsure of what to think hears terrible news about Owen from her sister. Kathy is also saying goodbye as she is leaving her husband for another man. Tragedy then strikes the Browning family again and with Owen gone Sarah is distraught. Owen realizes his mistake and returns to Sarah and her family to aide them in their time of need. The book ends on a predictable but happy note. 
I thoroughly enjoyed this read. I am sad to not be able to follow the story of the characters any longer. I am not sure I will pick up any more books in the series as they are not free and only relate in location to this book.

Rating: 3/5

Other works by the author: A Firefly Hollow Series, Shadows Collection

Sunday, May 1, 2016


Well I have spent the week recovering. I haven't been back out for a run yet. I plan on going out tom. I did ride the exercise bike and run/stride on an elliptical type machine. The last time I used my brace was yesterday. I only wore it because we were at the salt flats. I knew my ankle would be sore from all the twisting and turning I would be doing on it. I am glad I wore it as my ankle was very sore. I have felt good today.  I am still contemplating if and when I want to run a marathon. I am thinking of running the Route 66 in the fall. I will train with the OKC landrunners if I do run in Tulsa. Lots to decide.