Fall is here. So is Apple Picking.

I didn’t really want to say Goodbye to summer but with the weather we are having the last 4-5 days, it still feels like hot summer days! I’ll eventually embrace fall with cozy sweaters, socks and maybe even a cup of tea. Who am I kidding, it will be hot chocolate – not a tea drinker.

One thing we do every fall is go apple picking. We’ve been going to Gates Farm in Port William (NS) for the last three years. This past weekend, we decided to go last minute. They do a wagon ride around their orchard and tell you the best spots to pick the apples or pears. We even got some small pumpkins – it just fees too early for pumpkins 😉

Hiking through the fields

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You can’t go apple/pear picking without tasting 1 of each. OR 2,3,4…..!

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Pretty sure this bag is too heavy Mom!

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After filling these two bags, she was calling it a day!

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One last stop to check out the sunflowers. 

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In the end, we had two – 10lbs bags of mixed apples and pears! Guess I should get baking! I’m hoping we can get in a corn maze and some pumpkin people next month! It’s hard to believe that October is next week!

What’s the one thing you are looking forward to the most this fall?

Do you go apple, pear, or pumpkin picking?

Is it feeling like fall or still summer for you?

October Catch-Up

October was  filled with running, soccer, yoga and barre for me. Then swimming lessons and gymnastics class for the girls, which they love!. Time with family, working a lot, traveling for work more and of course Halloween!

Running Mileage

For just coming off an injury/getting it diagnosed, I’m happy that I was just able to be running again. I played 2 soccer games, went to 2 yoga classes and 2 barre classes. It wasn’t a very motivating month trying to get back into running/working out but I’m feeling like I’m doing better.

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Plans for November:

I want to run more consistently which means getting back on the treadmill when my husband’s working and potentially getting back into running at lunches. I do miss my “runches”. Treadmill running isn’t all that bad as I can catch up on some shows I’ve missed throughout the week. Who am I kidding, I love the fact that I have a treadmill at home and can run when I can’t get outside.

Soccer has been a lot of fun too. When I get on the field my mind is completely lost in the moment which I was missing with running and yoga lately. Honestly, I can’t get my head wrapped around the fact that it’s November! NOVEMBER folks!!!!!!!

Halloween:

Birthday cake, birthday present and a party-goer (not in the photo). The girls loved Halloween and I’m now officially sick of chocolates, candies and chips. Okay, I’m not sick of starburst but everything else I am.

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Pumpkin People

Each year we check out the pumpkin people in the valley but happened to leave it to the last weekend this year. Obviously, we had to stop at this one so the girls could be just like their father.
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And then even more like their father – British 🙂 Funny enough, he was working that day so they pretended to be at work with him.

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Do you have anything planned this month?

Are you starting to think about the holidays yet? (I’m trying not to for at least another week or so).

Runners – are you in off season mode now?

 

Run, Barre, Yoga and Pumpkins

That pretty much sums up life in the last week. It seems as if running is taking a back seat lately as I just don’t have the interest/drive/motivation to do it.

What’s been going on?

Last week I tried Barre for the first time and had a blast! I had lots of aches and pains in muscles that I didn’t know existed. I even went back this Monday! I’m trying to get back into weekly yoga but missed it yesterday because I was just too busy and needed my lunch hour to get stuff done. That just made me more grumpy which really, no one needs to be grumpy.

Blogging Confession

Honestly, I’ve barely signed in to WordPress all week to write, read or comment on other blogs. This might be the longest I’ve gone without writing a post. Right now, I just seem to have no desire to write and contemplating wrapping up the blog in December. Don’t worry, since I’m grumpy I’m not making any decisions but I’m sure trying to figure why I blog and if I’ll keep it going.

Should we go right or left?

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Running, My Ankle & Soccer

I’ve gone on two 9k runs in the last 2 weeks and that’s it. They were a week apart but so different even though I ran the same route. My first run, I loved and seemed to just want to keep running and the second run was horrible from start to finish. Can’t win ’em all!

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My ankle is getting better. Both long runs started off with no pain or stiffness so that’s a big win! I’m still in physio which seems to be working. I’m also back to playing indoor soccer each week and loving it!

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Yes, I was THAT Mom last week who dragged her kids to her 7 o’clock soccer game which resulted in an a 1.5 hour delayed bed time! I made dinner the day before so that would it be quick and easy and lined up a sitter lined up but it fell through last minute. Luckily another Mom has a teenager coming who loves kids! She took care of the girls while I played. Have you ever been half dressed for work and half for a run/workout? I tend to make dinner and get half ready for soccer: work blouse and soccer shorts for the win! After the game it was home to settle the girls down for bed time.

PUMPKINS!!!!!!!!!

We went a last minute pumpkin picking with my brother’s family on the weekend. Sunshine, a rainbow, cold winds and then a downpour of rain. It was the fastest pumpkin picking I’ve ever done!

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Though pumpkin picking was so quick due to the weather it was completely unplanned and so great to see my brother, his wife Jen and my niece Ava. Best part of our weekend for sure!

Pumpkin everything or ex-pumpkin lover?

What have you been up to?

Bloggers – how long have you been blogging ? When is it time to stop?

 

 

Ummm, So, It’s October Already!

When did this happen? September went by at the speed of light! I don’t know about you but the months just seem to be flying by. Oh September, you were supposed to be my month of my first race(s). You had such high expectations that crumbled quickly. Though you slowed me down, I did not stop moving forward with my running.

Post Treadmill Run Wednesday night:

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Lilly started school…..

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I got to volunteer (twice) at Maritime Race Weekend

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I did a little cross training this month. I managed to get out on my bike a few times. I’ve done a few DVD workouts at home that have left my entire body feel wobbly. I managed 82 of km running, 50 km of biking and 5 Strength Training/DVD workouts! Not too shabby!

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October 1st – Fast 5k in my Night Runner 270 Lights:

Well I finally had a FAST 5k outside! Last night I went out with my Night Runner 270 lights (and my vest). Some how I managed these numbers: 6:01; 6:09; 6:04; 5:52; 5:17! I honestly don’t remember the last time I saw 5:17 or anything close to that. Now, I’m not saying that’s going to happen again any time soon but that sure was encouraging!

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I’m really hoping October is my month for running. I’m pacing the 1:10 – 10ker’s at Valley Harvest on Thanksgiving Weekend (Oct 11th) then we will eat all the food with family. After that, I have a trip to PEI {sans kiddies} for what I hope is my Half Marathon race. I have no qualms about dropping down to do a solid 10k if needed. I’m looking forward to just running 21.1 on my own, in a somewhat new place and a out-of-Province (destination) race.

How’s was your September?

Any big plans for October? 

BLT 5k Recap

My last official “race” of the year has happened! I would like to run 1-2 more 5k’s but I’ve yet to register or commit 100%.

Saturday morning was the BLT 5K (Beechville – Lakeside – Timberlea) put on by the Timberlea Tundra Pounder’s founder, Courtney! She blogs at Runner Girl. Let’s just say, she thought of everything and put on a successful event!

Pre Race:

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It rained on the way to the run.

As I drove the 3 minutes from my parents place to my old school (yes, I actually attended this Elementary school when I was in Grade 6), I noticed the signs that we hand crafted. Nice touch! Then I parked at the school and took a moment to watch the Canadian flag flap around in the wind at half mast. Eventually I went inside the school where is was super warm and got my race kit… a personalized race kit.

“It may be hard now but someday this will be your warm up”

Cute, eh!

Cute, eh!

When I got my race kit, I was able to meet some runners/bloggers that I’ve been following and connecting with at recent events. I got to meet Heidi from Idle Hide.

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Heidi and I.

Race:

I ran most of the race with my long time friend Tracey. It was nice to run together and catch up. We both wore our Red/White Maritime Race Weekend shirt as we wanted to #raceredandwhite this weekend.

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Me and Tracey

I had no goals for this race other than to do it and have fun. We went out really fast and then let up a bit. It was nice to run on the trail which recently had four days of rain on it. The trail was in great condition but I sure was dreading that hill at the end.

I’m finally starting to trust my training but more specifically my hill training. I dread running up those hills but am always surprised after reaching the top of them how strong I am now. Must keep that in mind over the next  few cold months.

I wasn’t sure if I’d get a PB and actually couldn’t remember what my 5k PB was until after the race. No PB for me but it was a great run under 28 minutes (27:46 on my Garmin).

Tracey and I post race

Tracey and I post race

Post Race:

I also got to meet Heather – super-duper Boston Marathon runner 🙂 Not only does she know my buddy Hal Higdon (she was in his book 4:09:43) she blogs over at Girl Goes Running. We’ve tried to meet up at other runs but it just never worked out until now. She is super friendly and passionate about running. It was great to finally chat with her.

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Heather (right) and I.

I also got to chat with Samantha. She ran her second full marathon at the Valley Harvest so it was nice to chat about that run and her experience with FULL marathons. It’s something I want to do someday but not sure quite when it will all line up for me; training wise.

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Samantha and I.

I hung around and ate too much cake with Heather, Samantha and a few others 😉 What a great event! Courtney did an awesome job, as did the volunteers. I look forward to more runs with the TTPer’s when I’m in town and their event next year 🙂

PR Medal Garmin

I came home to my girls out walking with “Grandad”. Lilly asked me “Did you win your race Mommy?” And I said, yes Lilly…I sure did 🙂 I don’t know if I’ll ever “win” a race but I will always win my race.

Last few days for the Runalicious contest/giveaway (Canada Only).

Anyone run the BLT 5k ?

Do you meet up with other bloggers at races?

Anyone race this weekend?

 

Thanksgiving Vegan Apple Pie

It’s Thanksgiving weekend in Canada ! One of my favourite times of year. We are gearing up for Lilly’s first run today and then Thanksgiving dinner with the fam on Sunday. After going over the menu with Mom I realised I should probably make something for my vegan husband and remembered this yummy pie I made last year.

VEGAN APPLE PIE

Thanksgiving Vegan Apple Pie

Thanksgiving Vegan Apple Pie:

Ingredients:

6 – 8 large baking apples (Granny Smith are best) cored and sliced

1/2 cup raisins (optional)

3/4 maple syrup

1-2 tbsp lemon juice

2 tsp cinnamon

2 1/2 tbsp cornstarch or arrowroot powder

1 pie crust (See end of post)

Directions:

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees F
  • Core and slice apples into bite-sized pieces.
  • Bring a medium pot of water to boil, then reduce heat to medium and add the apples and optional raisins to simmer for 8-10 minutes.
  • Save 1/4 cup of “apple water” for use later.
  • Drain apples and place in a large bowl.
  • Mix carefully together the cooked apples, maple syrup, lemon juice, and cinnamon. Set aside.
  • In a small saucepan, mix the 1/4 cup “apple water” with the cornstarch over medium heat, stirring constantly until the mixture turns very thick.
  • Add the cornstarch mixture to the rest of the ingredients, stirring until mixed well.
  • Pour into a pie crust and bake for 30-40 minutes.

Pie Crust: (Similar to Cristco pie crust – one serving)

  • 1 cup and 1/3 cup of all-purpose flour
  • 1/2 tsp salt
  • 1/2 stick of shortening (I use Earth Balance as it’s vegan)
  • 3-6 tbsp of ice-cold water

Directions:

  • Mix flour and salt together.
  • Cut up shortening and mix into flour.
  • Add water by the tbsp.
  • Put in fridge for 30 minutes to chill (or freezer for 10 minutes)
  • Roll into pie crust

Happy Thanksgiving!

What’s your favourite pie to eat? or make?

What are you Thankful for?

Me: my little family.

Reminder – today’s the last day to enter My Race Ragz Giveaway (US Residents only).

Butternut Squash Soup {Vegan}

With the weather starting to dip down in Nova Scotia during the last few weeks (minus today as it’s +15C), I’ve been wanting to make soup. And after attending a workshop over a month ago and having squash soup I was determined to make some of my own. I may even add this to our Fall Bucket List for next year.

Of course, I turned to Pinterest and found this Classic Butternut Squash Soup from Whole Foods. We don’t have a Whole Foods in Nova Scotia – which is a bummer as I quite enjoyed shopping there when I was visiting friends in Toronto. [Whole Foods – if you are reading this – please consider building a shop in Nova Scotia, pretty please].

Picture from Pinterest. I only wish I could take a photo like this.

Classic Butternut Squash Soup: from Whole Foods

Ingredients:

  • 2 tablespoons extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 carrot, diced
  • 1 celery stalk, diced
  • 1 onion, diced
  • 4 cups cubed butternut squash, fresh or frozen
  • 1/2 teaspoon chopped fresh thyme
  • 4 cups low-sodium chicken broth {OR Veggie broth – to make it Vegan}
  • 1/2 teaspoon fine sea salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground black pepper
Method:
  • Heat oil in a large soup pot. Add carrot, celery and onion. Cook until vegetables have begun to soften and onion turns translucent, 3 to 4 minutes.
  • Stir in butternut squash, thyme, chicken broth, salt and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat and simmer until squash is fork-tender, about 30 minutes.
  • Use an immersion blender to purée soup. Alternatively, let the soup cool slightly and carefully purée in batches in a traditional blender. {I used our large food processor and it worked just fine}.

We really enjoyed this soup, it was gone by lunch time the next day. Lilly didn’t like it but we will give it a go again and make a double batch to freeze some. This will be perfect for when the baby arrives and I need a quick lunch.

Bonus: They also provide three other ways of making the soup: Thai-style, Apple/Gorgonzola and Almond, Southwestern Style. Our next test will be the Thai-Style.

Do you like warm soups when the weather starts to dip?

What’s your favourite soup to make?