cheater cheat beef eater

Alberto Contador, winner of the 2010 Tour De France, has been formally and provisionally suspended by the UCI (professional cycling governing body). The amount of the drug found in his system was quoted as being "a very small concentration" of the banned substance Clenbuterol. So, yes, it was very little of an illegal substance.

Does he seriously think that's an adequate excuse? So, illegal substances only have consequences if you do them a lot? Like, a little marijuana is ok....just don't be a constant stoner? Seriously???

And then, to top it all off, Contador claims that the drugs were put in (unbeknown to him) some steak that he consumed on a rest day during the tour. Even though the beef was purchased in Spain (Contador's home county) by a close friend of the team's head chef. It wasn't like the food was donated from some scandalous source. I'm going to say that they knew exactly what they were doing/eating.

The Tour has not yet stripped Contador of his title or yellow jersey. But, let's just remember....Contador won the tour by 39 seconds. 39 seconds, the time that Contador gained on Andy Schleck during Schleck's unfortunate mechanical error on the final climb of stage 16 of Le Tour.

I still think Schleck could've won if he hadn't dropped his chain. All things seemed kind of equal between him and Contador. But maybe they were only equal because Contador was doping?

Please check out the article here. I'd love your thoughts!

Andy's the real winner.
Can't wait to watch the Tour next year.
Hopefully the Schleck Brothers will finish first and second.


back to my british roots

I'm loving this weather we've had for the last couple of days. A little chilly and rainy...its perfect! It gets me into the mood for fall, the holidays, boots and parties.

This weather also gets me back to my (pretend) British heritage. I mean, its rainy and 61 degrees in London and its rainy and 58 degrees here. Can't you see the striking similarities? I want to pull on my riding boots, throw on my Barbour jacket and ride around the hills. Except, I need some riding boots, a Barbour jacket and something to ride around the hills on (I'm not thinking my road bike will do the trick.)

So, folks, who wants to shell out a measly few hundred dollars (or pounds) for one of these beauties:

You can pay retail for them here, but I'd also gladly accept a jacket from Ebay. Happy British weather to you all!

badminton waxed jacket, union jack internation waxed jacket, international waxed jacket and june international waxed jacket


date night

Josh and I have two date nights during the week. Its so nice to unplug from the world for a little while and just spend time together. This semester our date nights are Mondays and Thursdays and I really look forward to them.

Some times we spend the evening at the house (cook dinner, watch a movie, whatever) and other times we do activities around town (bike ride, head to Charlotte for dinner, see a play, things that most of the time end up costing money.)

A few months ago I broke Josh's favorite coffee mug. It was a Waffle-House style mug (the old fashioned off-white mugs) that he painted on a double date we went on in college. I lost a lot of our dating memories in the infamous fire of '04, so we were both sad to see the mug in pieces.

So, we decided to go paint new mugs at Art Blooms on Monday.

Josh wasn't quite sure what to paint.
I think the problem is that he's a little too creative at times.

I, on the otherhand, am about 4% creative.
Which is why I used a blue paint with brown speckles in it.
It took approximately 6 minutes to paint 3 coats (including drying time)

Josh found inspiration on his cell phone.
Ahhh, the magic of the Blackberry continues to amaze (and confuse) me.

He painted the pattern of a Rainbow Trout on his mug.
How creative is that??

Stay tuned.....I'll post pictures of our projects next week (after they've been fired and admired by the staff.) I'm sure you can hardly stand waiting to see my blue pot, right?


a bushel and a peck

My friend Casey and I went apple-picking in Hendersonville, NC this past Saturday. We had a blast. We talked, giggled, snacked and picked apples until we literally couldn't carry any more back to the car.

We decided to go to Grandad's Apples...yes, it's a little (or a lot) touristy but it was hilarious and oh-so-much fun. We got out picture taken with the local dinosaur, pet some ornery animals and got an amazing apple cider slushie.

My mom used to (and still does) say, "I love you a bushel and a peck and a hug around the neck." I never knew what a bushel or a peck was until this past weekend. And in case you were wondering, a bushel is more apples than you could possibly ever consume.


you know i love a deal

Y'all know I'm really money conscious or thrifty....ok, I'm just cheap. I still like nice things, places and experiences, I'm just not really wanting to pay retail. And since I didn't marry for money, this girl is always looking for a sale.

Which is why I love restaurant.com and searching for discount codes online. Those two things combined earned me a $25 gift certificate for $3 (for The Wine Loft). The $25 certificate was on sale for $10. Then, I entered the code "spork" that I'd found online. Its an additional 70% off.

Now, the real dilemma is here.....who am I taking with me??



I know that stuff comes up and Young Life leaders sometimes can't make it to Leadership. Midterms, sick kids, car trouble....all good reasons why it'd be tough to make it to leadership.

But then you miss the food, the fellowship, the teaching.....and the Vespa Rides. What? You didn't know about the free Vespa rides? Oh, maybe we should have mentioned that.


are you ready to rock 'n roll?

So, after reading about Blair and Allison's adventures in Virginia Beach are you so ready to sign up for a race???

Here's the remaining line-up for 2010:
Philadelphia 1/2 marathon: 9/19/2010
San Jose 1/2 marathon: 10/3/2010
Denver Full and 1/2 marathons: 10/17/2010
Los Angeles 1/2 marathon: 10/24/2010
San Antonio Full and 1/2 marathons: 11/14/2010
Las Vegas Full and 1/2 marathons: 12/5/10

The races run about $85-$100......BUT, y'all know I'm the queen of cheap! I just got a participant code (from running this past weekend) to get $10 off an event. Hey, its not much, but you're free to use my code if you like! Head on over to http://runrocknroll.competitor.com/register and use the code CHIS10.

Hit the road friends!!


Viginia Beach Photo Explosion

Allison and I had so much fun our our Labor Day girls weekend and Half-Marathon. I tried to just find a couple of pictures to share....but I couldn't really narrow it down. Enjoy!

Stop#1: Pre-Race Expo. So much free stuff and perfect photo opps. Couldn't help ourselves!

made a card for amy at the team determination tent

had our race fortunes told by this kind of creepy guy

some of our favorite shirts:

Stop #2: carbo loading. After the expo we headed over to Bella Pizza. Yum. My mouth is watering remembering the deliciousness. Yes, we did get separate pizzas. No, we didn't eat them all....but I tried.

Stop #3: Race Day! We got up at 4:30. Yikes, that's still disturbing. We got to the starting line, in the pitch dark, and managed to get a few photos in before storing out gear bags and shuffling into our corral (while snacking on Mike & Ike's, my latest obsession and pre-race favorite!)

we finished on the boardwalk. with the other 26,000 runners.
two popsicles, one bottle of water and a fruit cup later we were recovering
such a fun run

stop 4: 7-11. We saw the dang convenience stores everywhere. Its like the slushie machine was a siren calling out to us.....so we answered (duh!) ps, check out Allison's new t-shirt; i got one too!

Then we got back in the car for the 6.5 hour trip home. It was the first time that I'd ever run a race in a different city and made a whole trip out of it. Its my new favorite way to travel for sure! It was this perfect mix of a half-marathon, lounging by the pool, shopping, eating, exploring and giggling with an old friend. We're already starting to plan the next trip. Anyone know of a good race in a cool city???


the race that almost wasn't

This past weekend I ran the Virginia Beach Rock 'n Roll Half Marathon. Only, I almost didn't even make it out of Shelby.

I was so excited Friday night. Allison and I were going to have so much fun on girls-weekend-getaway-slash-half-marathon-extravaganza. I was laying out my outfits (for running and cute-non-running times) when it happened. I picked up my empty suitcase and proceeded to flail to the ground. I'd pulled a muscle in my lower back.

So there I was: sitting on the floor (very still of course) crying about my ruined labor day weekend race plans. I called my doctor (you can do that in a small town on a Friday night and actually get your doctor on his cell phone........or maybe that's just because he's my friend) and he helped me out. Two doses of mild muscle relaxers, a heating pad and lots of sitting still later i was healed.

I kind of felt like a wimp, both for hurting my back with an empty suitcase and for getting so upset about something so obviously trivial as a half-marathon. But after giving myself a stern talking-to about what's actually worth getting upset about, I let myself enjoy the weekend and upcoming race.

I'm so glad to have good friends; they help me out with life. So thanks friends, for all you do to help keep this crazy girl in place and on track.

rock n' roll folks
(yes, this photo was taken at 5:30am)


what's in a name?

"What's in a name? That which we call a rose
By any other name would smell as sweet."
Romeo and Juliet (II, ii, 1-2)

What's in a name? Better yet, what's in name brand? Let's take clothes for example: perhaps better materials, more precise measurements, more flattering fit and even reputation. But is it always worth it to spend more money for that label?

I've certainly been this girl before. I used to hate shopping on the sale rack and sifting through the completely disorganized racks at TJ Maxx. But gone are the days of limitless shopping (or just daddy's credit card) and here-to-stay are the days of thrift stores and good friends leftovers (still love those Citizens jeans Holly!)

My heart skips a beat when I find a great label at a discount store like TJ Maxx, Rugged Wearhouse or even Goodwill. I can no longer go to Asheville, NC without finding something awesome at their Goodwill Outlet. Yes, Outlet. Its all the stuff that isn't really sorted. It just sits in bins...you dig through it (with gloves people, this place is nasty)...and then you pay based on how much your items weigh. Its like a Chinese lunch buffet, only with used clothing.

Over the summer I found the coolest vintage Patagonia fleece vest for Josh. And it was a measly $0.70. I couldn't believe it. Washed and dried the vest a couple of times and now its perfect!

So, this past weekend, my friend Holly and I decided to spend some time at the outlet. We were beginning to get a little discouraged. Where were the cute lamps? What about the designer jackets we'd seen? And then I saw it...peaking out from a particularly packed bin:


seriously, dior? at the goodwill? what?!?!?!?!
what had i found? a dress? a shirt? something fabulous please!
the vintage print was amazing...i knew i'd stumbled onto something big.

that is...i thought i'd found something amazing until holly held it up for me.

who knew that Dior made moo-moos?

No, even though I'm a recovering label-addict, I did not buy the Dior moo-moo/housecoat. Of well, better luck next time, right?


steal of a deal

Oh Rugged Wearhouse, you are amazing. How you can pull off carrying both Anthropoligie and Apple Bottom I may never know (or understand.) But I applaud you. You have once again surpassed my expectations.
Check out this perfect-back-to-prep-school-cute-as-english-style top. Love it.

But what I love the most is the shock of the retail to rugged pricing:

Images by Freepik