Support for David’s Cause

So as I approach my 31st birthday, I realize I haven’t exactly found my “cause” yet.  Most people have a charity that they’re passionate about.  Maybe they participate in Relay for Life every year to honor a family member that has passed away from cancer.  Maybe they run an ALS 5k each year to raise money for a cure.  Maybe they put their efforts into donating to third world counties that need clean water, or shoes, or education supplies.  For my dad, it’s always been the Arthritis Foundation.  I think the perception of this disease is  “oh your knees hurt and you feel stiff, take some Bayer aspirin and you’ll be throwing your grand kids around the backyard by lunch time.”  In reality, this can also be a young person disease.

My dad, who has arthritis, continues to stay moving and cycle for the cause.  He has another race coming up and he needs your support!  In the guest blog below, he explains how this disease affects lives and needs to be taken seriously. If you too haven’t found your cause, think about taking the time to read and donate your Starbucks coffee $$ today.  There are only 46 days left to help out a great cause. Thanks all!

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Guest Blog Post: Written by David Shuey

My mother spent the last 15 years of her life living in a wheel chair. Severe arthritis robbed her of mobility and her quality of life. When you hear the word “arthritis” what comes to your mind? Aches and pains that come as a normal part of aging. Take some pills and you’ll feel fine. Nothing can be further from the truth. Osteo and Rheumatoid arthritis are chronic diseases that can cause a lifetime of pain, rob people of their dreams and even result in death. It’s time to take this disease seriously.

I started volunteering for the Arthritis Foundation almost 20 years ago because I felt helpless as I watched my Mom’s health decline. I wanted to do something. Over those years, I have learned a lot about arthritis, but the most shocking and sad fact is that kids get arthritis. In America 300,000 kids are diagnosed with rheumatoid arthritis. The impact of a child being diagnosed with arthritis is devastating for the kids and for their families. I often say that I got involved with the Arthritis Foundation because of my Mom but I stay involved because of the kids. Watching these little heroes coping with their disease breaks my heart but also inspires me.

I also suffer from serious arthritis that should be limiting my life activities but I refuse to let it. These kids and my mother taught me the difference between pain and suffering. Pain is real. It hurts. Suffering is a choice. When you experience chronic pain, you can choose to suffer…or not.

So, six years ago I rode my bicycle solo across America to raise awareness and money for the Arthritis Foundation. I raised over $70,000 with the support of my great friends and family. Not bad for an old guy with arthritis.

In September I will hop on my bicycle to pedal down the California Pacific Coast Highway with 300 other like-minded cyclists…the majority of these riders have arthritis…the others have loved ones who have arthritis. This ride hopes to raise over $1,000,000 to support the work of the Arthritis Foundation. You can support me by making a donation at:

http://ccc15.kintera.org/davidshuey3

Thanks for making a difference!

David Shuey

Picture below — David Shuey and his mother Marcella Shuey, who passed away in November of 2008.

Arthritis Today

Arthritis Today

Arthritis Today

Arthritis Today

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Things I’ve Learned from a Great Mom

July 28th is an important date.  It’s the date my Grandmother Arky was born in Philadelphia in 1926.

It is also the date that her first born, my mother Donna, was born in West Philadelphia (born and raised, on the playgrounds where she spent most of her days) in 1951. The first grandchild on both sides of the 100% Italian families.

Those who know my mom and grandmom know that they’re always trying to instill knowledge for the younger generation.  Whether it be how to not kill yourself accidentally, or how to seek out the best bargain, these ladies have wisdom.  In honor of their birthday — I’m going to share some of that wisdom with you all.

In true 2015 form, I’ll keep in a list.  10 Things I’ve Learned from my mother, Donna Shuey:

  1. You can’t trust nobody these days!  My great grandmother (Arky’s mother Frances), made it a point to remind all of us, that these were different times.  You have to watch out for robbers, tricksters, and people who try to serve you NOT FRESH coffee. I often think about the span of their lifetime and all of the historical, cultural and technological changes they’ve lived through. She has been around for World War II, Woodstock, JFKs assassination, The Beatles, Atari.  She’s watched overalls and jean jackets go in and out of fashion a few times. Even in our relatively short lifetime, we’ve gone through substantial development.  We’ve gone through 5 presidents, been introduced to the internet, and watched as gay marriage was legalized in all states.  I now look forward to the email chains I receive from Donna with regards to new methods of abduction with perfume samples in the parking lot, escaped local convicts and tornado watches (which I now take seriously after this summer).  I also don’t mind getting tazers and pink portable pepper spray bottles in my Christmas stocking.  Because I know bad things do happen to people, and I’m reducing my changes of them happening to me because my mom has prepared me for the worst case scenario.  For that, I love her.
  2. Don’t take IB Profen on an empty stomach!  If you do this, the medicine will eat a hole in your stomach and you will die.  While I sometimes roll my eyes at her, she was an RN and taught nursing school, so I secretly and respectively obey, just in case.
  3. Don’t use your cruise control in the rain!  I think I probably gave my parents 6 solid years of anxiety when I started driving.  I crashed into 3 day old cars, was in a vehicle that flipped outside of Scranton PA, crashed into the Hershey’s Mill sign around Christmas in a snow storm in my friend Lisa’s car, and hydroplaned/spun off Route 42 on the way back from Atlantic City one summer.  I am now more afraid to drive in the rain, than I am in the snow.  So, hopefully if you didn’t know this already, driving in the rain on cruise control is not a good idea. The reason behind this is because cruise control’s job is to make sure you stay at the same speed (NO MATTER WHAT).  So imagine hydroplaning, and your car is like, stop slowing down, you told me stay at 60 MPH so let’s do this.  Be safe!
  4. Don’t buy ANYTHING without doing online research for 2 months prior! And then even then, you’ll likely find a better deal after you purchase it, so keep that receipt or be prepared to hate yourself.  Everyone knows Donna worked at QVC for 13 years and now has a lifetime discount.  She loves good jewelry, a good gadget, and a good bargain.  She had the selfie stick 2 years before it was all the rage, and the entire extended family depends on her for present ideas. If you don’t check with her before making a major purchase decision, you will regret it.  She will say “oh that’s super nice, I bet QVC sells it for cheaper.”  So save yourself the post-purchase dissonance and just ask mama D before you press submit order.
  5. Don’t point out that flaw, they probably know it’s there!  In line at the post office as a child, I noticed a woman with a mustache.  I stared and stared at her and finally turned to my mom and said, “that lady has a mustache.”  On this day, I learned a serious life lesson.  Don’t point out physical differences or “flaws” on others, because it’s likely something the person already knows exists.  From that day forward, I made a point to look past any differences, because the person probably does enough self-analysis and self-depricating evaluations of themselves. And if they don’t, then good for them!  Who am I to bring attention to it?
  6. Be generous and be kind! My friend Gillian Ryan loves to tell the story of how we met when she first moved to West Chester.  We were on the bus, and I was nice to her and immediately asked her to hang out some time.  I remembered being “the new girl” a few years back, and how uncomfortable and awkward it was, so I wanted to eliminate that for her.  She thought I was weird, but came around a week later, and we’ve been friends for nearly 20 years.  My mom always instilled in me that being kind and generous would never come back to bite me in the bum.  It started with my grandparents who would spend what little extra money they had buying toys for single parent families.  My parents often find a Kmart or Walmart layaway with children’s clothing and pay it off anonymously at Christmas time, donate their time and earnings to various causes and I can’t wait to carry on these traditions when I have the means. Life is full of surprises and obstacles, so why not be nice to each other and give what we can to those who need it.
  7. Don’t be afraid to try new things outside of your comfort zone!  My mom used to send me to camp when I was young.  Neighbors would say “oh, who is Ashley going to camp with?” and my mom would say “with herself?”  Because of these experiences, I feel so comfortable trying new things and thrive when meeting new people and having new experiences.  I know I will make friends wherever I go, and make the best of any situation. I value new experiences and value continued learning. So, thanks ma.
  8. Have a good work ethic!  I got a job when I was 15 years old at TCBY in the shopping center about a mile away from our house.  I couldn’t WAIT to get a job.  At an early age, I learned about sacrifice, money management, and work ethic.  Since then, some of my best friends are people I’ve met at these various jobs.  I take work seriously, and always try to excel and be the best.  I attribute a lot of my successes to being exposed to the restaurant industry and work in general at an early age.  Seeing how well respected my parents were in their positions, made me want to excel in any role.
  9. Laugh at yourself! Although my mom and I have a very different sense of humor, she always taught me to laugh it off. If someone is being mean to you, say “are you having a bad day?” and move on.  9 times out of 10 when you ask someone this, their response is “actually, yes, sorry, I am.”  I recently found a card that said on the outside “Laughter is the best medicine” and on the inside it said “Unless you have diarrhea.”  No truer words have ever been spoken.
  10. Travel!  This is my most cherished lesson from my mom.  Both her and my father were wonderful enough to expose me to a variety of places starting at a young age.  We visited my god-parents in London when I was 12 and I was captivated by the history and scenery.  We visited our friends in Texas for passover one year and learned about other religions and traditions.  We visited Costa Rica when I was 15 and saw an impoverished country with happy people living with significantly less than what I had.  Since then, traveling has been one of the true and purist joys of my life.  I’ve now been to 14 different countries and learned so much about other people’s way of life!  The world is a huge place and I can’t wait to see more of it.

Maybe you learned something by reading this blog, maybe you didn’t.  Either way, it doesn’t really matter because it was for my mom.

Love you Donna!  Happy birthday and thanks for being the best support system, caretaker, and cheerleader a girl could ask for!

xoxo

Ashley

Iceland, A strange and beautiful place.

I C E L A N D  2 0 1 5

So when we decided to go to Iceland, most people’s reaction was….why?  First — this is why:

Iceland is a ridiculously beautiful place.  With clear ice water, black sand beaches, and volcanic rock, it’s not like any other vacation spot I’ve been to in the past.  You should go to Iceland if you’re looking to hike through waterfalls, climb glaciers, and feel like you’ve time traveled or perhaps are visiting a place that was recently bombed and is rebuilding through the rocky wastelands and landscapes that look like the surface of the moon. You should NOT visit Iceland if you like to be warm, are a foodie, or thrive in over-populated areas.  We took an ATV tour around Lava Beach on our first day.  With the lack of trees and the volcanic hard rock, the surface of the areas surrounding the major cities look like the moon.

Since I know people love lists, here are 16 things I learned on my trip to Iceland:

  1. Prepare to have some alone time.  There are roughly 325,000 people Iceland and it’s rumored that as this point, they’re all basically related. I’m not confident that they’re all 100% human — possible vampire haven. Their history is a relatively boring one, as we discovered in the Icelandic History Museum.  They are basically like “people moved here and … yea some of them had red hair and it’s cold and stuff….we think.  We don’t really know much on the subject.”  Probably because the vampires glamoured all of the residents into forgetting their history, and/or all of their artifacts are buried under the layers of volcanic ash and rock that coat the countryside.
  2. Pack some granola bars.  We had TWO meals at gas stations or awkward rest stops because the restaurants are few and far between.  If you do stumble across a dining establishment in your travels through the country, the food will be expensive and for lack of a better descriptor, not good.
  3. Don’t bring any cash.  Iceland is almost 100% cash-less. We didn’t see a single Icelandic Kroner while we were there.  Credit cards are king – but you must have a credit card with a chip.  No pin is required. 
  4. The gas stations are a little tricky.  You have to guestimate how much you’re going to spend, pre-pay, then pump away.  To give you an idea — we had a Toyota Land Cruiser and it cost us about 7500 Kroner to fill half the tank (That’s about $57). Gas runs close to $8 a gallon (so pipe down with your screams as the summer prices rise over $3.00 here in the states).
  5. Bring a GPS and make sure your car is a 4×4. The Icelandic language is virtually impossible to read, write, or speak.  There are no people to ask for directions. There is no cell phone service, even if you have a portable WIFI hub, so it’s basically like 1990.  Bring a map and bring some mix CDs from the 2000’s and enjoy the ride.  We had no idea we were driving around a $80,000 car otherwise we would have acted way more gangster.  Most of the cars look like this one — so we’ll just pretend ours did too for the purposes of this blog. 
  6. Bring waterproof clothing.  It rained probably 3 of the 5 days we were on the road in June.  Never debilitating rain that caused a cramp in our hiking game, but enough to make you feel kind of damp and a little depressed.  Although we did hear from other tourists in the area that it has been a particularly wet June.  Also there are SEVERAL waterfalls — most are pretty neat and offer stories about Icelandic women threatening to throw themselves into the waterfall, lovers being separated by the waterfall, and/or the waterfalls eroding the rocks into weird shapes like this one.
  7. Biking the ring road is probably a bad idea.  We felt pretty badly for the folks on their cycles as we struggled to stay upright with the whipping winds, unpaved roads, on and off rain storms and 48 degree temps.  Iceland is pretty flat for the most part, which is cool for bikers, but conditions including several unpaved gravel roads, make the trip a pretty big challenge. I wish I had a picture for reference.  Just picture this as two bikers next to each other trying to go straight:  /  /  If you’re a bad ass and love being slightly miserable at a 45 degree angle for 10 days, then by all means, you do you.
  8. There are no animals.  Sure you’ll pass some horses, and some sheep, and some cows, but for the most part, you won’t have to worry about running over squirrels or swerving around deer.  There is in fact, only one “native” animal in Iceland called the Arctic Fox.  Allegedly it turns white in the winter and an auburn red in the summer, but we didn’t encounter any on our travels. Nor did we see any puffins (still mad about it).
  9. In the words of my friend Jesse, no you didn’t just fart.  The hot water in Iceland is provided by several hot springs and geo-thermal plants.  All that means is woof, hope you like the smell of hot rotten eggs in the morning. Expect this smell at the Geyser too! 
  10. Once you get to Reykjavik, you can probably skip the National History Museum and go to Phallus, the penis museum instead.  I know *GASP* SKIP THE MUSEUM!?  I mentioned earlier that it seems that even the Icelandic historians are still not really sure what happened here. Most of the stories are super vague with the occasional “we found this in the ground, we don’t know much about it.”  The highlight of the experience was the kids play room upstairs where you could try on Icelandic garb and look really cool like Tara does below. The Phallus museum however, is a museum of penises.  Elephants, humans, sperm whale – you name it –  this creeper collected it.  There are more than 215 penises and/or penile parts within these four walls.  
  11. If you’re looking for good places to eat in Reykjavik — Try Meze or Grillmarkadurinn — we had really great meals at both spots.  The hotdogs are all the rage, and drinks are about $15 a pop so choose wisely.
  12. Definitely don’t put your hair in the Blue Lagoon (or any hot spring for that matter).  The sulfur will leave your hair feeling stringy and dry for days — possibly weeks. Pack an extra bottle of conditioner just in case. Also get ready to get naked.  They split you up into boys and girls locker rooms, but you’ll dodge more boobies here than a full season of Game of Thrones.
  13. Beer to go is not really a thing in Iceland.  The grocery stores only sell “light” beer, which is 3% alcohol or less.  We tried to take a few beers “to go” at a local restaurant and ended up confusing the service staff as we drove back to the AirBNB with 4 open beer bottles in the cup holders.
  14. If it’s a nice day in Dyrhólaey, lay on the ground (it’s warm) and don’t forget to sign your name in the church guestbook.  There only 8 pages filled out and the first page dated back to 2011 (I’m writing this blog from the future, 2015).  Sort of an interesting experience to be somewhere that most people don’t bother to go.
  15. Walk on a glacier!  We hiked across Vatnajokull. It is forever changing – so we got to see some small ice caves that would be gone in a matter of weeks due to the warming temperatures.  Don’t be scared — if I can do it, you can do it.  They have different levels of difficulty.  You get crampons and an ice pick and you feel like an extreme adventurer. Here is one of the ice caves:
  16. Also make sure you hit up the Glacier Lagoon at Jökulsárlón.  It’s about a 5 hour drive from Reykjavik, but if you’re driving the circle — it’s an easy add-on and well worth the extra miles.  It’s basically a lagoon of bright blue glaciers. We had planned on taking a boat tour and screaming ICEBERG! RIGHT AHEAD! the whole time, but our tour was canceled due to intense wind.  We did get to walk along the edge and take pictures like this one: 

All in all, Iceland is unique, quaint, beautiful, and weird.  As Iceland seems to be increasing in popularity, I would suggest going now before the masses get there and ruin all of the untouched landscapes and peaceful beauty of the country.  Happy Travels!

The Adventures of Bentley

Having a dog growing up was great.  Dakota was the sweetest chocolate lab to ever exist and I still tear up when I think about her.  She is chillin’ on the mantle with the electronic candles above the fireplace in my parents house for now.  When she passed, I said to myself “I never ever want to be this sad again, I’ll never own another dog.”  But alas, after two years went by, I had puppy fever.

So along came Bentley.  He was adopted from All 4 Paws in Chester Springs.  He was listed as a Chihuahua-Beagle mix — how that happens is a story for another day.  Needless to say, after DNA tests and a 30 lb weight gain, we determined that he was part Shepard, part coon-hound, part wild beast.

Needless to say, the “glamorous” life of a pet owner is a facade!    What I thought would be a life full of long joyful walks with my new best friend was really tears, antibiotics, face wounds, and credit card debt.

However, Bentley makes for great conversation and…well….mediocre blogs.  I like to tell the story about when Bentley knocked over a three year old toddler in the dog park and then drug him through the dirt by his hood as everyone stood in horror.  Or the time that we took him out to eat in WC and he barked at every black person, every person wearing a hat, every beard, a plant,……a light bulb or two.  Or about the time Bentley ate cat poop then proceeded to projectile vomit on the beige carpet…..twice, as I stood by sobbing.  Or perhaps how hilariously expensive it was to have Bentley on antibiotics for various “stray dog issues” seven times before he was a year old.  I’ve had the fortune of having Bentley collectively be the worst dog ever in his first year of existence.  However, he’s two and a half now and much calmer and much more fun to hang out with.  His days of boob biting, racism, and couch destruction are behind him.

So if I can give any twenty-something’s advice — it is to WAIT until you’re older and more boring before you welcome a four legged friend into your lives.  But once you do cave, they love you no matter what and it seems maybe a little worth it.  You’re welcome.

xoxo shu

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Every Ending Comes From Some Other Beginning’s End

As 2012 came to a close — everyone got a little pensive.  The new beginnings bring resolutions, and hopefully no regrets.  Since we survived the Mayan calendar catastrophe, there seems to be an infinite amount of time to accomplish the things in life that you set out to do.  Until the next natural disaster or health scare, we feel safe and young.  I’ve heard many folks over 50 use the phrase “youth is wasted on the young.”  My only resolution for 2013 is not let that apply to me and my life.

So for the new year, of course I have goals and aspirations.  I sat with my dad for breakfast one morning and went over all the countries we’ve been to and the next five that we want to visit.  In previous blog posts I’ve scaled out the details of some of my past trips, and in this one I shall reveal my next excursion: GREECE!

I’ll be taking two full weeks off from work in August and heading to the Greecian island of Evia with some of my best buds.  I am beyond excited to take this adventure and I’ll surely have lots of pictures to post when the trip is finished.

Total Unexpected Topic Change:

Being a bartender (on Sundays only) gives me a little flair at the end of a busy week.  Last night was no exception.  I met Jack.  Jack is an 85 year old man from Chester County who worked for the Campbell’s soup company for 50 years and has been retired as long as I’ve been alive.  The reason why this guy struck a cord with me is because he was the happiest dude ever.  Was he blind in one eye? Yes.  Did he have to get his friend Al to drive him to Carrabba’s because he’s blind in one eye? Yes.  Did it still make me feel good when he told me I was pretty, even though he’s blind in one eye?  Yes.

So Jack had some sound advice for me.  He told me that it was OK to not be married at age 28 because, and I quote, his “first wife turned out to be a total bitch.”  So he seems to think if I wait it out, I’ll skip that first horrible husband and end up all set.  He assured me, the second time he got it sooooo right.  He was bringing food  home to his wife who was not well.  He said the saddest part of her being sick was that she misses out on all of the small things, like getting take out on a Sunday, or going to the movies.  Brokenhearted yet?  Don’t be — Jack was stoked to be able to pick up some grub and head home to spend dinner with her.

He told me to slow down when I talk because, although most women talk too fast, he was having trouble deciding what kind of meal to order because he was lost.  He told me to stop rushing thru life, speak slowly, and only say nice things.

He also told me that I had a great personality and that if he came back to Carrabba’s it would be 80% because of me.  When I asked about the other 20%, he said because he thinks he’d like to try the rest of the entrees at some point, but he didn’t want to say 100% because he wouldn’t want me getting a huge ego.

Jack made me want to  pay more attention to the people I meet.  Some of them might just make your day.

Today’s music comes as a throwback:

Semisonic – Closing Time

Enjoy,

xoxo

shu

I’ll be back!!!!!!!!!!!! I’m working on a nice little DIY doozy.

Stay tuned — for now — keep yourself informed.  I hate politics as much as the next gal.  I mean, there are way more important things to worry about like traveling, money, nail polish color trends, what to eat for lunch….you know #20something basics.

But this article from Rollingstone has some hilarious KO moments:

http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/blogs/national-affairs/the-four-punches-that-knocked-out-romney-20121023?utm_source=dailynewsletter&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=newsletter

 

Enjoy!

xoxo

 

shu

 

What to Pack : FIREFLY FESTIVAL, Dover, DE

So in preparation for the upcoming Firefly Festival in Dover, DE from July 20-22nd, I figured I’d make a quasi informational blog to contain my excitement. Since we all know how much I am obsessed with planning and making lists, this will be great therapy.

After attending Bonnaroo in 2010, it became apparent that people are not mentally or physically prepared for such festivals.  You must come to terms with a few things:

  • You will be transformed into a dirty hippie for 3-4 days, if you aren’t already.
  • There will be strange people everywhere.  Babies pooping on the floor, experienced life hippies, rainbow umbrellas, overly friendly strangers, and parrots.
  • Water is your friend.
  • You will need to read this blog so you know what to pack.

There are a few things that saved our lives at this festival, and I figured I’d share, so you too can be less miserable in 97 degree heat with no air, power, or sleep.  Why do we do this to ourselves again?

  • Case of FROZEN bottled water.  You can use this as ice to cool the things in your coolers, and then take them into the festival with you as long as they are SEALED and then it will slowly melt so you can slowly stay hydrated and cool!
  • Empty water bottle – the venues will have free clean water inside, so bring your empty containers and fill up when you get in, stay hydrated!
  • Portable fans, maybe with a spray element, are fabulous.  But be careful not to catch your hair in them (Gillian…)
  • Bug Spray/Suntan Lotion/Hat – self explanatory
  • Pavilion tent and sleeping tent.  You will want a place to hang out during the day in between bands, so a Pavillion tent is a MUST.  Rain or shine — you’ll want a covered spot that isn’t your muggy tent.
  • Hammer.  We used a hammer about 5x more than expected.
  • Baby Wipes
  • Hose – a lot of the festivals have a barnish thing with sinks that have a grooves to hook up a hose.  This was the single best thing we brought.  It’s so hot, you will want to shower 3x a day, but the showers cost $5-$10 and are not all that clean/refreshing.  This way, you can stand there in your bathing suit and shower as many times as you want.
  • Towels.
  • Medicine – there is a medical tent, but bring whatever you need as there aren’t facilities to purchase medicine at the venue.
  • Plastic wear : plates, cups, paper towels, forks/spoons etc.
  • Mini Grill / burgers / hot dogs / buns etc — Food at these festivals can be really pricey!  Bring PB & J and a lot of foods that are non-perishable since you will run out of ice quickly.
  • If you’re a beer drinker — BRING PLENTY.  The venues usually sell ice and beer, but it’s like $80 a case.  So come prepared!  Firefly does have an air conditioned Brewery with moderately priced beer, and the vineyard.

Here are some pictures from the Firefly Instagram page to get you amped about the show!  Make sure you download the FireFly Music Festival App so you can create your own schedule, get a map to all the hot stages, restrooms, custom TOMS painting (ahhhhh).

Today’s music comes from one of the festival artists, Cold War Kids!

♫ Hang Me Up To Dry – Cold War Kids http://spoti.fi/IY52UY #Spotify

enjoy,

xoxo

shu

Post Color Run

A few weeks back, I posted about the upcoming Color Run.  Sunday July 8th, the race ran thru Philly with just under 23,000 people in participation, making it the third largest 5k in the entire United States!

Being that this was my first 5k, I didn’t really know what to expect.  Maybe it was being surrounded by friends and family, maybe it was anticipation of the next color zone, or maybe it was because it was 630am and I wasn’t fully awake yet, but this 3.1 miles FLEW by.  Below are a few pictures from the event.  If this race runs thru your city — make sure you sign up!  Below is just a small sampling from the event.  I stole some pictures from friends.  The event was basically one big photo opp.

To set this goal and accomplish it with the support of everyone was an amazing experience.  Can’t wait to keep going!

My next conquest?

http://runforyourlives.com/

The ZOMBIE RUN!!!!  October 27th, 15 of my closest friends and family will be helping me evade brain hungry zombies as we plow thru a 5k/obstacle course with hurdles, blood pools, mud, cargo nets, rivers and many possible other combinations of torture.  Benefits go to the American Red Cross.  The website is hilariously witty and I cannot WAIT to finish this race.

Today’s music comes from the Swedish House Mafia.  If you’re looking for a motivating running song — this is a great track!

♫ One (Your Name) [feat. Pharrell] [Radio Edit] – Swedish House Mafia, Pharrell http://spoti.fi/Jf3jLA #Spotify

enjoy,

xoxo

shu

Technology in 2012

Last week, my friends and I were chatting about technology and youth.  I never wanted to be the person that started a sentence with “when I was your age….,” but, well, I am.  It really is amazing the way things progress in a lifetime.  Age 17, I got my first credit card and my first cell phone.  Mainly because I was driving and my parents wanted me to have these things for emergencies.  How would they know I’d be eating a hoagie and crash into the bumper of a three-day-old car 4 feet from our house?  Because they are planners, and for that, I thank them.

I was at a family event a few months back, and my 11-year-old cousin pulls out her cell phone and starts text messaging her friends from school.  ELEVEN.  At that age, I was just worried about not poking someone’s eye out with a snap bracelet, or regretting the POG trade I just made with the kid in my homeroom.  Now, 5th graders are doing their homework on iPads, they are being taught not to text and drive, cyber bullying is an everyday term, and disc-mans are a thing of the past.  It really opens up a whole new world of problems for America’s youth.

I can even remember thinking my dad was pretty cool because we had a car/bag phone.  So when we saw accidents, we were cellularly obligated to pull over and call the police.  A phone, in a bag, in the car?!  Ironically enough, my father is still on the RAZR phone, so I guess his technological advances peaked in 95′. (Love ya dad!)

This got me to asking myself a lot of rhetorical questions.  How did parents keep track of their children without these marvelous devices?  You just assumed your kid was where they said they were.  And just WAITED to hear from them on a land line?!  Seems crazy.

Not to mention the apps.  How did people know how far they were running without the Nike + iPod app?  How do you pick a place to eat on the weekend without Urban Spoon?  How did people know when to use the bathroom during movies without RunPee?  I don’t have the answers, but I’m glad I have access to these glorious life assistants.

In the words of my grandmother “it was a different time.”  Life must seem like a foreign planet to her.  She is from the “we don’t lock our doors, let the kids walk to school alone, it was 30 cents to see a movie” era.  In a way, I’m jealous.  Now I have to be concerned about bath salt snorting crazies eating my face, people knocking my iPhone out of my hand at the train station (Leah) and having to live with NOT drinking and taking naps at work (Mad Men).

Can I say I miss the days of AOL?  The sweet sound of the dial up as it connected and you prayed for e-mail?  The ability to tape music right off the radio and make mix tapes for your friends?  Having to watch TV live when it airs because TiVO/DVR didn’t exist yet?  Maybe a little, but then I turn my house lights off thru my iPhone, and I’m over it.

I came across this image and it made me laugh, so I’m sharing because it’s SO TRUE!

Today’s music comes from LP — the song is Into The Wild.  There is whistling — that’s a thing now, yes?  Listen now, you’ll see it in a commercial shortly, of this, I am sure.

♫ Into The Wild – LP http://spoti.fi/L31i46

Enjoy,

xoxo

shu

The Color Run is Coming!

I think it’s easiest to get healthy in the summer.  It’s usually fairly gorgeous out (unless you live here in PA where the humidity rises to hair frizzing levels in July) and it’s light outside until 9 p.m.  I remember summers of staying out in the cul-de-sac until 9 p.m. playing spud with my neighbors, why should my twenties be any different?  So as of late, I decided to break out my running shoes, my old bike and my tennis racket to get some much needed vitamin D.

I got inspired this year by some of my friends and my sister and decided to sign up for my very first 5k!  Starting light, I went with The Color Run.  This run benefits the Back on my Feet organization.  Anyone who reads this blog knows I love myself some good philanthropy. Upon doing further research, I think this one bad ass charity!  The organization focuses on helping the homeless as well as other under served populations.  The idea being that introducing fitness into their lives will build confidence and self-sufficiency and in turn, allow them to become more independent.  Check out the website below for more info about getting involved or donating!

http://www.backonmyfeet.org/

But back to The Color Run.  Basically, you run, walk, jog or yog in a white T and every 1k they splash you in the face/shirt/fanny pack with a different color.  1k is yellow, 2k is green, 3k is blue, 4k is purple, and 5k is pink.

By the end, we will look like this girl below.  Only sweatier, more out of breath and less happy I would assume.

Unfortunately Philly is sold out, so if you haven’t already gotten your runner’s pass, here are some of your options:
–  Head to Kansas City, Missouri and be confused as to why Kansas City is not located in Kansas.

– Head to Omaha, Nebraska, the state that invented the 911 emergency phone system.

– Run over to San Francisco, California, the state with more raised turkeys than any other U.S. state.

– Jog your way to Twin Cities, Minnesota the home of the Tonka Truck manufacturers.

– If you hate tea too, make your way to Boston, Massachusetts home to the country’s first public school.

Otherwise, you’ll have to wait until 2013 for this cool experience!

Today’s music comes from Chris Breezy Brown to get you pumped!

#getpumpedup ♫ Turn Up The Music – Chris Brown http://spoti.fi/KzHDY1 #Spotify

Enjoy!

xoxo

shu