Wednesday, August 23, 2017

Walt Wednesday

Some people do a "Wordless Wednesday" post, where they simply share a photo or image, but I thought I'd make a little series out of my Wednesdays. And since I love alliteration so much, why not go with Walt Wednesdays (obviously everyone can use a little break from the seriousness, scariness and sassiness of life - and what better way to help put a smile on your face than with a cute wiener dog picture, am I right?!)... So, without further ado...


When life gets overwhelming, how do you de-stress?

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

REVIEW: Stitchburgh Boutique

I don't know where my recent affinity for cross stitch came from... It is normally not the esthetic I am drawn to... But for some reason, I have been on this kick for it lately and had an apostrophe.

What if we got a couple pieces for the #AdventureMobile?! I mean, they're light so can easily be hung. If you didn't see my recent post, we've been doing a little "remodel" to make the van more "us" and some art would be the perfect touch.

I did what I normally do when I have a question/ need/ dispute and put it out on social media. Since I obviously don't cross stitch (my running costumes involve limited sewing... the hot glue gun is my BFF), I thought I'd ask to see if any of my friends did. A friend of mine referred me to an Etsy shop run by one of her friends - Stitchburgh Boutique.


Once I checked out the shop, I fell in love and quickly found some contact info for the owner, Jaci. I shot over an email to see if she'd be interested in doing some custom pieces for our #AdventureMobile. Graciously she agreed and I sent her over a couple ideas that the hubby and I had. (Since I know nothing about cross stitch, other than I think it's cute, I thought I'd run our ideas by her since I wasn't sure what would be considered "easy" vs "difficult".)

Just a few of my favorite designs that Jaci has made!

Based on the sizes, designs and our budget we edited our ideas down and decided on three final pieces.

Jaci was super easy to work with. She gave us an estimated timeline and was realistic with what she could do. She uses a water soluble marker to draw on the fabric (which washes out when she finishes) so you can okay it before she gets to stitching. She also sent over a few progress shots so we could get an idea of how everything was coming.

I wasn't digging the "font" of the first draft (I really love her cursive script) and since the pieces will be going on an aqua area in the van,
we decided to change the fabric color. 

From concept to work in progress to further along towards completion. 

Getting the final "okay" before finishing them up and shipping them off.

When the pieces arrived, we were SUPER STOKED! We went out and bought some adhesive so that we could hang them in the van immediately. We love how they look and feel as though they fit perfectly with the vibe we are going for!

If you are ever in the need of cross stitch pieces, I would definitely recommend Stitchburgh Boutique. Shoot, I think some of her other pieces will make it on my Christmas list for sure! Make sure to check out her Etsy store HERE, follow her on Facebook or on Instagram, and email her at for custom order requests.

Do you know how to cross stitch?

Monday, August 21, 2017


Sad news to report in the McDot world: My grandma passed away Friday afternoon. Her health had been declining recently and over the past week she had been in and out of consciousness. We were told by the hospice nurse that she was "actively dying". She had a long life (92 years long), but it's still sad to know she won't be here with us any longer.

A picture of my grandma from 1940

My grandparents got married in April of 1946

I mailed her a card at the beginning of last week when we had been given the prognosis letting her know I heard Jesus was calling her home, to go - enjoy eternity and I'd see her soon. Sometimes folks just need to know they can let go.

A picture my mom snapped of the card.
PS It arrived about an hour after she passed. 

I don't know where the nickname came from (although, if I had to guess I'd probably say it was either my brother or my cousin Casey who came up with it), but she was affectionately known as Grama-Rama to us kids.

My mom, grandma and I during the summer of 1985

My grandma with the grand kids in the winter of 1986

We are thankful she passed peacefully. She won't be having a funeral, service, viewing or memorial, but that doesn't mean we won't celebrate her life every chance we get. She was an integral part of our lives and will be forever missed.

What name did you call your grandma?

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Workout Recap - Week 33

Sunday, August 13th – 20 mile run (Goal: 10 @ 8:25, 10 @ 7:50), Stretched & Foam Rolled

Monday, August 14th – 6 mile run (Goal HR 150), Stretched & Foam Rolled

Tuesday, August 15th – 7 mile run {1 mile warm-up, 10 x .25 mile hill repeats, 1 mile cool-down}, Stretched & Foam Rolled

Wednesday, August 16th – 6 mile run (Goal HR 150), Stretched & Foam Rolled

Thursday, August 17th – 11.67 mile run (Goal: 1 mile warm-up, 8 x 400 {at 6:40 pace w/ 2:00 recovery}, 8 x 800 {at 7:00 pace w/ 2:00 recovery}, 4 x 400 {at 6:00 pace w/ 2:00 recovery}), Stretched & Foam Rolled

Friday, August 18th – 4 mile run (Goal HR 150), Stretched & Foam Rolled

Saturday, August 19th – Rest Day, Stretched & Foam Rolled

I am super stoked to report that this week's workouts felt great! I was hitting most of my paces and felt strong - even with getting in almost 55 miles. I definitely earned my rest day and tried to take full advantage of it! I can't believe that we are less than 50 days away from the Chicago Marathon... It'll be here before we know it!

How were your workouts this past week?

Friday, August 18, 2017

Friday Favorites

WHOOO HOOOO! Friday's finally here! I swear it seemed like this week was never-ending... Or maybe it was just me who thought the weekend may never get here. Anywho, it's time to focus on the good and share some of my favorite things I've been loving lately. Don't worry, I won't delay any longer... let's jump right into my FRIDAY FAVORITES!

Brooks Heritage Line

I believe I mentioned this line before, but since the rumors are true and the shoes are going back into the vault soon I had to stock up. This week I got a shipment of three pairs of Women's Chariot Heritage Shoes that I am in love with. And apparently I got my order in just in time because the color-ways that I picked up are no longer on the website.

Wedding Anniversaries

Wednesday the hubby and I celebrated our NINTH wedding anniversary. Okay, so, maybe I should mention this... I do not like getting gifts. Don't get me wrong, I am always appreciative, but I feel like I "need' so little that I normally would prefer folks spent their money on giving to others in need. With that said, I don't love our anniversary because of presents, in fact the hubby and I normally don't exchange any type of gifts, but I love it because we put a lot of work and effort into our marriage that I'm stoked we are defeating the odds. Nine years down (fourteen together), forever to go!

Dried Pineapple

I normally don't buy it often at the grocery store because it is a fairly expensive "treat" (not to mention I can down a bag in one sitting), but recently it was on sale and I have been loving it lately. I know, I know, it is crazy high in sugar, but I justify it by telling myself it is better than snacking on candy. And don't get me started on yogurt covered raisins ;)


Sweet Emails

How often do we think something but never say it? I got a sweet email the other day and have kept it in my inbox as a reminder that things you do DO make a difference. If you see something beautiful, speak it! If you love someone, tell them! You never know when the moment may pass, so take advantage of every second and SPREAD KINDNESS!

What are you loving lately?

Thursday, August 17, 2017

REVIEW: MPOWERD Luci® Inflatable Solar Lights

When MPOWERD offers to send you some of their inflatable solar lights, you take them up on the offer. I mean, the #AdventureMobile is always in need of lights, so this was like a match made in heaven, right?!

The awesome folks at MPOWERD sent us four of their lights to try out. We were stoked to break into the packages and give them a go (but I had to refrain myself a bit so we could snap a quick picture first - #BloggerPriorities).

If you haven't heard about this brand before, let me give you the down-low.

In 2012 MPOWERD created Luci®, an inflatable solar light, with the goal of making an affordable clean energy product that people could use in any situation — from outdoor camping adventures to backyard parties to everyday living. Luci® taps into a source of light that’s limitless and readily available to everyone on our planet — the sun. Advancements in renewable tech have allowed them to literally put the power of the sun into a device that fits in the palm of your hand.
And you know I love a company who gives back, right?! This brand is no different and it is one of the main reasons (besides their FAN-FREAKIN'-TASTIC products, of course) that I totally big red puffy heart them!
Their goal is to empower the 1.5 billion people in the developing world who still live without electricity. In many places, as soon as the sun goes down, children can't study, entrepreneurs have to stop working, women are less safe walking outside, health clinics have to close... the list goes on. Kerosene lamps are the most common solution in these areas – but they're dangerous, toxic and expensive. Luci® is a clean, safe and affordable way to bring light to the world.


They don't just talk the talk, they walk the walk. They created a "Give Luci® Program" where you can join in on delivering light all over the world. Purchase a Give Luci® light for just $14.95 and their nonprofit partners will send it directly to someone living without access to electricity. It's a win-win! #DoSomethingBright #LightUpLife

Recently we were able to bring these lights on a couple camping trips with us. We went to Lake Tahoe for a wedding and car camped on the way (staying on BLM land near Mammoth Lakes) and also went to Big Bear with the #AdventureMobile for a long weekend with friends. Not only were these handy, bright and convenient, they take up ZERO space and last forever (okay, maybe not forever, but 12-18 hours when fully charged depending on the model).

I'll be honest, in the past I thought I would be "crafty" and make some solar lights for camping. I bought glass jars and solar lights (from the Dollar Store), then I hot-glued the light portion to the top of the jar and sprayed some "glass frosting" on them to disperse the light a little more. Let's just say they are clunky and heavy and not super reliable.

I never claimed to be good at the crafts I make ;) Now they sit on our porch.

The hubby and I both commented on how amazingly awesome these little buggers are. We've used them while eating, reading, playing games and just maxin' and relaxin'. The hubby loves the Luci® Color Essence best for the "mood" lighting, while I dig the Luci® Outdoor 2.0 most because it's so bright and with it's adjustable bottom strap we can hang it easily in the #AdventureMobile. But we both agreed, we love all of them and are stoked to have found this brand!

Do you have any solar powered items?

Wednesday, August 16, 2017

Walt Wednesday

Some people do a "Wordless Wednesday" post, where they simply share a photo or image, but I thought I'd make a little series out of my Wednesdays. And since I love alliteration so much, why not go with Walt Wednesdays (obviously everyone can use a little break from the seriousness, scariness and sassiness of life - and what better way to help put a smile on your face than with a cute wiener dog picture, am I right?!)... So, without further ado...


When life gets overwhelming, how do you de-stress?