Thursday, July 31, 2014
Last week my sister, my mom and I went on a lady date to the Bookworm Gardens. It is a donation based garden that brings children's books to life through art. There is everything from Little House on the Prairie to Winnie the Pooh. We ate our lunch in The Secret Garden and then headed out to sit by The Giving Tree. We spent the morning running from book to book, even taking time to read a couple out loud.
Tuesday, July 29, 2014
One of my favorite family traditions is our yearly strawberry picking excursion to Barthel's Fruit Farm. This year the strawberries weren't 100% due to the polar vortex followed by tons of rain. That didn't stop us from picking a whole box and a bag of sugar snap peas. My favorite strawberry dish? My sister's homemade whipped cream with freshly picked strawberries.
Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Last weekend my dad and I completed 5Ks two and three. My mom and sister even got involved this time, that's how much fun they are. I love the energy and excitement just before we start running, especially when it's a well attended run. I didn't like either of the runs as much as Rock n' Sole. Storm the Bastille was a fun run so it wasn't timed and there were so many people that it was difficult to find a pace. The Gathering on the Green run was fun but I had never done a trail run before and about half way through I wasn't sure if I was going to finish. Two 5Ks in one weekend was a bit much so I've taken a break from running but I plan on picking it back up soon and hopefully we'll get to do a couple more family 5Ks before I head back to Spain.
Saturday, July 12, 2014
Our sister date tradition goes way back. Once a week my sister and I go to Cedarburg, eat at our favorite pizzeria and catch a movie at the Rivoli. Cedarburg is one of my favorite places in the Milwaukee area. Somehow it has preserved it's small town charm and history while shops continue to evolve with the times. There is everything from clothing stores to a gourmet popcorn tasting room. Our favorite place is the Rivoli theater. Once a week it plays a movie that has recently left theaters. We like to go on Tuesdays when tickets are just $2. I like that the theater hasn't become an ultra screen or requires you to reserve in advance, you simply go up to the ticket window and then enjoy the movie. So much simpler.
This sister date, we decided to get a bit blogger. You know, one of those blogger outings; the ones that go to super hipster places and the ladies in the photos look a little too put together and a little too candidly happy. You know what I'm talking about. Except our grand plans fell through a bit. We dressed up all cute but didn't allow ourselves enough time to capture what an amazing time we were having. Our plans to try a new restaurant didn't work out and we found out the hard way that Captain American: The Winter Soldier is only good the first time you see it. But we shall improve, we now know that it takes a bit more time to photograph ourselves having a fabulous sister date. Prepare to be jealous.
Wednesday, July 9, 2014
One of my favorite parts about being home is taking advantage of all that Milwaukee has to offer. That includes our myriad of summer festivals. One of my favorite places in the city is the Art Museum, so there was no question whether or not I was going to the Festival of Art. To be perfectly honest I find the Festival of Art a little pretentious. I don't know about you, but I don't hop on over to an arts festival to spend over a thousand dollars on a garden sculpture. But that's just me. To be honest, I prefer the Third Ward Art Festival at the end of the summer. The art is far more affordable, kitschy and local. But for a fun afternoon with my family and friends we pretended we could afford everything in those tents, my dad and I enjoyed some beer tasting and decorated our own pint glass. We even got a chance to walk through the visiting exhibit. Now I am quite the expert on Kandinsky.
Saturday, July 5, 2014
The 4th of July has always been a family day for us. The night before the 4th we headed downtown to see the fireworks on the lake front. They were lovely but they lasted for an hour. An hour is a bit long to watch fireworks. On the day of the 4th we started by going to Summer Fest. Not exactly a whole family favorite but we ate good food, listened to okay music, and had a fantastic time at Lucille's Piano Bar. After that we headed straight to see fireworks at Whitefish Bay. This is a tradition that goes way back for us. My sister and I even used to be in the parade back when we did gymnastics. We don't really get the chance to be the four of us often so it was great to have the opportunity to spend the day as a complete family.
Tuesday, July 1, 2014
On of my goals for this summer is to improve my fitness and activity level, so I started running. I. hate. running. I'm a sprinter not a distance runner and I get easily bored. But running is the easiest and most straightforward way to begin any fitness journey. I started slow with a concrete goal in sight: my dad and I signed up for a 5k for the weekend after I got home from Seville. I started training during my last couple of weeks in Spain. It was really fun to run along the river just after the realllllly hot sun had gone down. I started slow and worked my way day by day to 3 miles. I had no idea what to expect on the day of Rock 'n Sole, but it exceeded all of my expectations. There were hundreds of people running (and more people running the 10k and half marathons) so the energy was high. They closed down some of the streets in Milwaukee and I loved getting the opportunity to run throughout the streets and take my time to look at buildings and businesses that I normally drive by in a rush. Dad and I finished in 27 minutes, and with all the excitement and adrenaline, I didn't feel that tired at all. We're all signed up for Storm the Bastille and, although sometimes I don't want to, I still get outside and run.