MKE Adventures

Last Friday morning, I was on a plane to Milwaukee, to spend a long weekend with my sister and brother in law! I have lots of pictures to share from our adventures!

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First thing’s first, we walked to the Public Market to grab a snack.  We spent some time walking around downtown before picking up our race packets for the Rock ‘n Sole Quarter Marathon.  Then we walked to the Northwestern Mutual building, where Thayne works, and he met us to walk to the apartment.

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We had lunch at one of their favorite taco places, then headed to the zoo!  It was a hot, hot day, but we got to see lots of animals out and about.

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Friday night, Kristen cooked up some spaghetti, and we watched the Martian on HBO – great movie, by the way!

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Saturday morning was the Rock ‘n Sole Quarter Marathon – check out my recap here.

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Saturday afternoon, Kristen and I went to see Me Before You, which was a good movie, we both cried, ate nachos, and enjoyed the movie!  Afterwards, Kristen, Thayne, and I rode our bikes (I rode Kristen’s old road bike) to a beer garden about 4 miles from their apartment.  This beer garden was super neat; it was right off the biking trail.  I don’t think there was any parking nearby, you had to get to it by the trail.  Thayne had a beer, Kristen had a hard cider, and I had a lemonade.  There was a gorgeous river on the other side of the garden, and the atmosphere  was just really cool.

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There were several of these little caterpillars that we enjoyed watching crawl all over the place.

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Once we were finished with our drinks, we biked the 4ish miles back to the apartment!

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For dinner on Saturday, we tried out an empanada bar downtown.  I don’t think I’d ever had empanadas before, but they were super delicious.  It was Kristen and Thayne’s first time there, and I doubt it will be their last! It was good!

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Sunday morning, it was much cooler outside than Friday and Saturday.  We went outside with the kitties for a while, and Tucker even jumped for a bird! Don’t worry, he missed by a mile!

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Kristen and I went on a 25 mile bike ride Sunday morning, too.  25 miles is a long way! Kristen rode her fancy new tri-bike, and I rode her road bike.  It was a lot of fun, we rode on the trails in Milwaukee county, and it was really pretty.  The weather was cooler, there were lots of people out, and it was really fun to bike with Kristen.  It was also my very longest bike ride (so far)!

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We stopped at this cool turtle statue thing on our way back.  We both thought Mom would like it; when we passed it, I said “I think Mom would like this,” and Kristen said she thought the same thing every time she rode by it.

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Sunday afternoon, we did a little shopping, and hung out at the apartment.  Monday morning, after Thayne went to work, and before Kristen came home from training at the gym, Mookie, their other cat, sat on me.  She isn’t a huge cuddler, she sits near you, but not really on you.  I think this was the first tie she has ever laid on me, and she did it in the most Mookie way possible.

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Once Kristen got home, we ate some delicious hamburgers at a cute little cafe, then went kayaking! Neither of us had ever been kayaking before, and there’s a little lagoon right by Lake Michigan, near her apartment, that offered kayaking.  You’ll be happy to know that neither of us tipped over, and we had a blast!  I definitely need to do this again, I think there is kayaking at Shawnee Mission Park.  The lagoon had lots of moss growing, and we saw a few ducks.  We had the lagoon to ourselves for a little bit, then there were 2 other kayaks and a few paddle boats. I think we kayaked and explored around the lagoon for about an hour.  This was SO. MUCH. FUN!

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After kayaking, we went to Atwater Beach, which I had visited a couple years ago, with Mom, Dad, and Kristen.  We put our toes in the water, and it was pretty chilly! We walked all the way down and then back up the 100+ stairs to check out the beach.

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Once we got back to the apartment, it was time for me to fly back.  I had a wonderful time in Milwaukee with Kristen and Thayne. I’m so happy I was able to fly up for a long weekend.  Thanks for having me, sissen and brovver! ❤

Viva Las Vegas!

Mom, Kristen, and I recently traveled to Las Vegas for a girls weekend slash run-cation to the Las Vegas Rock ‘n’ Roll Marathon series (5k and half marathon).  I have tons and tons of pictures to share, so this post will just be the trip part, and I’ll write a race recap for both the 5k and the half marathon, with lots more pictures! I hope to share my race recaps tomorrow, but for tonight, here’s our trip, in photos!

Early, early Thursday morning, Mom and I were on a plane, and Kristen was on a plane, heading to Fabulous Las Vegas!

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We all met in Vegas, and it was still early morning there!  Aren’t time changes wonderful?  Anyway, we got checked into our hotel, and began wandering around, checking out the Strip.  We stayed at the Excalibur, but walked through many of the hotels/casinos around there to look at the shops and all the fun casino things.

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I love the Bellagio and the fountains.  The fountains are so pretty, and I love how the atrium inside changes with each season.  We at lunch at a cafe inside Paris I think, and continued on our journey.  I wish I would have worn my Garmin to see how many steps/miles we walked on Thursday.  It was A. LOT.

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We eventually made our way to the Las Vegas Convention Center, for  packet pickup and the expo for the race.

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Packets were picked up, sparkly skirts were purchased, and lots of other stuff was bought, tried, or looked at.  Kristen won a shirt from the Air National Guard for doing pull ups.  Go sisser!

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Not too much else happened on the first day.  A lot of time was spent walking around looking at stuff, and lots of time was spent at the expo.  By  the time we got back to our hotel, still kind of on Central Time, we were ready for bed, tired from traveling, walking around the entire city, and checking out the expo.

Friday morning, we grabbed breakfast (the first of 4 meals eaten at the all-day buffet!), walked over to the Luxor to check it out, and then got ready for our first Vegas run.

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We walked over to the Mandalay Bay too, and went over by the aquarium.  Mom found a stuffed stingray, and of course, Kristen and I fell in love with the “majestic sea flap flaps” and we each just had to get one.

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Our first race was on going to be Saturday night, but we wanted to get a run in, so we ran from the Excalibur to the Fabulous Las Vegas sign, took some pictures, ran a bit further, then turned around and ran back.  I don’t recommend running further south than the sign (if you ever have the desire to do so), there are no sidewalks!  It was runnable on the gravelly shoulder, but wasn’t the best running surface.

There were lots of people taking pictures, and we didn’t want to wait in the line, so w kind of went off to the side and got some pics with the famous sign.

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I managed to get a fun running selfie on the way back to the Excalibur.  Because, of course I did!

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We got back to the hotel, ate our second of four buffets, then showered and figured out a plan for the evening.  We wanted to go to a show while we were in town, and decided on Cirque Du Soleil Zarkana.  We ate our early dinner at the buffet, three of four trips to the buffet, if you’re keeping track, then had a drink and made our way to the show!

Now, if you’ve been to Vegas, you know that getting anywhere at all is not easy.  There are ups and downs and turns and this shuttle and that monorail and then around through this casino… it goes on and on.  So we wanted to get to the Aria, from the Excalibur, and I think, between everything, it took us just about an hour.  That was not a fun hour.  Lots of speed walking, running, frustrations, and casinos between us and the show.

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We finally got there, and the show was amazing!! I loved it!  Cirque du Soleil did not disappoint.  I would definitely go to another show someday.  The stuff they can do is just mind-blowing.

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We took a Lyft back to our hotel (where had you been all our lives!?!), had our fourth and final buffet snack/late dinner, and crashed.

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Saturday morning was race morning! Of course, the race wasn’t until 6:00 at night, so we had a whole day to spend before our race!  We went ahead and got all dressed up in our race outfits, and ventured to Red Rocks Running Company, a local Las Vegas running store.  After visiting them, we got pedicures, and then made our way back to the Strip to have lunch and get to the race.

Kristen had this idea that we all had to match for the race… so we bought Sparkle Athletic skirts at the race expo, and wore our KC Running Co. tanks tops.

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Once we got back to the Strip, we ate at BURGR, Gordon Ramsay’s upscale hamburger restaurant, in Planet Hollywood.  Tasty burger!

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Mom played with the showgirls, and then we went to the Bellagio to watch the fountains for a little bit.

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We got to the SLS Hotel, and waited for the 5k to start across the street.  The 5k race recap is here!  KCRC represented at the Las Vegas RNR 5k!

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Once we made our way back to our hotel, we were ready for bed, and then Sunday morning was race morning again!  The half marathon started at 4:30, and before the race, we had breakfast, then went to a movie to kill some time and stay off our legs.  The weather, unfortunately, took a bad turn and was extremely windy and cold!  Half Marathon race recap is here!

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2 races, 2 days, 3 medals.  Very tired feet and legs, but a very happy girl!

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Monday, we met up with the We Run Social group in front of the Bellagio, then Mom, Kristen, and I headed out for a short little shake out run.

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We ended our run as close as we could get to In-N-Out Burger, because we had never had it, and we’d all heard it was amazing, so we just had to try it out!  It was just as delicious as we’d heard.  We had our double double’s animal style.  I don’t exactly remember what all was added with animal style, but we had extra sauce, mustard mixed in with our meat, and other yummy additions.  We ran into Mark and his wife at In-N-Out Burger.  What are the odds?!

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After our In-N-Out trip, we changed into our swimsuits and spent a lot of the afternoon in the hot tub and sauna.

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After the spa trip, we ate at Dick’s Last Resort, a restaurant where the employees are obnoxious and make fun of you, all in good fun.

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We packed most of our stuff up on Monday night, because our flights were in the morning on Tuesday.  A bit more time was spent chilling in bed with our majestic sea flap flaps, and then it was early to bed for an early rising to head home!

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Tuesday was the travel day! We sent Kristen off, then Mom and I had a bit of a wait for our flight, and then before you knew it, we were back in KC.  Mom headed for home on Wednesday morning.

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Lots more to talk about, regarding the 5k and the half marathon.  More to come!  Mom and Kristen, I had a blast in Las Vegas, and really enjoyed our girls weekend!