Thursday, October 31, 2013

Halloween - My Favorite!!!

Today I am off and spending it making Halloween special for my babies. Halloween is one of my favorite days of the year. We will be making boo-berry pancakes for breakfast, scary screaming sandwiches for lunch, and good ole chili for dinner.

This day will be filled with dancing to the monster mash, singing "dem bones" (Wes's fav - if I can IG him singing it I will - hysterical), my favorite thriller moves, and scary, kid-appropriate, movies...

Tonight the Hotle's (K9Bish) come over and go trick or treating with us - we live in a big subdivision so MORE CANDY baby!

On that note - have a safe and spooky Halloween - I love this ish!!!

3 years ago... 
Happy Halloween my friends...

Wednesday, October 30, 2013

Pile on the Miles Challenge

What up peeps - Wednesday baby... AND... one of my favorite months is coming up shortly... NOVEMBER! I have many reasons I love this month - sweaters, tights, boots, food, wine, and my favorite challenge"Pile on the Miles" from the girl who loves her watermelon, Monica from Run, Eat, Repeat.

In November she hosts this amazing walking/running challenge to pack on some mileage instead of the lbs. The Holidays are approaching, and you know we want to look our best at all those family gatherings and work functions.

You sign up - keep your miles accountable each week - and also could win some sick prizes. You set a goal for yourself for the month and keep the spreadsheet updated each week - if you make the goal. HUZZAH!

I set my goal for the month - 100 miles. Join in the fun with me?

In November, I am going to dedicate my Monday posts to how my running is going from the previous week - I can make it a link-up if anyone is interested in doing a Monday Running Chat - kind of thing? I am also going to keep myself accountable on twitter @4kottez and of course my all time love IG @missmel_joy

If interested head over HERE and sign up!!! Come on - you know you want to... Let's RUN....

Tuesday, October 29, 2013

Down Right Real Ryan...

I am running a marathon on December 7th - not 13.1, FREAKIN 26.2. Ummmm... did you hear that Mel - get it together... Here is the deal - I ran 4 halves in 6 weeks and guess what? I got burnt out for a bit. I have been running 4 days a week since, BUT... this weekend I was supposed to run 16 miles, AND... I chose to spend it with my family instead. I didn't run. Do I know how important it is to keep up with my training? YES... but I NEEDED A BREAK! Okay... it feels better putting it out there.

Waaah.Waaah.Waaah. Whoa is me... with school, work, home life, extra curricular things, etc... SHUT IT! Last week I had a "bad" week - I was tired, sad, mad, cleansing, and just down right not in the right frame of mind. I was playing "pity party" in my own head BUT... guess whose back? It's time to hit this marathon training hard - regardless... This is NO joke - you can't "fake it and make it" during a marathon (I kinda think you CAN do that for a half) - you gotta put the WORK in...

My training this week:
Monday- 4 miles
Tuesday - 3 miles
Wednesday - 5 miles
Thursday - Rest
Friday - 6 miles
Saturday - Rest
Sunday - 18 miles

Total = 36 miles

Time to up my game and start focusing... I feel like I am "BACK" - done with my week of weirdness, focusing too much on things that won't benefit me, and ready to take on the world. BOOM!

Tuesday ON

How is training going for you? What do you do to motivate yourself again?

Monday, October 28, 2013

Weekend Lovin - Gpa style...

Happy Monday - WOOT! It's a new week and THAT makes me happy. I am going to do a lil weekend recap for you - as I haven't really spent much time talking about what is up in my life...

My grandfather had a heart attack about 3 weeks ago and had to be flown here to St. Louis for bypass surgery and rehab after the surgery. For the past 3 weeks my father, step-mother, and step-sister have put their life on hold to take care of him, my grandmother, and Uncle. I have been up at the hospital as best as I could with school, kids dance, E's schedule, work, and everything else going on...

Last week he was discharged from the hospital and I thought it would be nice to take the family down to visit them all (being my Dad has been down there for 2 weeks or so). So we packed up Saturday afternoon and off we went. My grandparents live about 2 hrs from St. Louis and out in the middle of no-where (or at least to me). They are farm folk and when I say "farm folk" - I mean - wake up, eat a huge breakfast, go outside, come in, eat a huge lunch (supper), go back outside, come back in eat a huge dinner, and then go to bed at 8. Farm Style...

We did a little shooting... I drove the kids around in the golf cart... I taught Elle to drive... We ate, ate, ate and spent good quality time with my family. It was needed. I love my Dad and missed my grandparents. The kids were on their best behavior and I could tell my grandparents enjoyed their company, thoroughly.

Gpa is on the up and up - he is doing so well. That makes me happy - strong man I tell ya... And... there ya have it... Farmer Mel:)

Monday Out

Friday, October 25, 2013

Advocare Herbal Cleanse Results Take 2

I have been doing the Advocare Herbal Cleanse for 10 days now - I did this back in February and you can see my results HERE. I had great results last time and once again, I did this time too.

I started last Tuesday and I have been going strong for 10 days. I can say that I didn't weigh myself when I started, I weighed myself on the Saturday morning AFTER I started (after being on the cleanse for 5 days) and I was 140 lbs. So I am guessing I lost about 3 or 4 lbs since Tuesday - who knows? I hate the scale. end.of.story.

I ate according to the plan, took my supplements consistently, and continued to run. Running is HARD on the cleanse - with the lack of carbs and such, it is just a struggle. My longest run I did on the cleanse was 8 miles and I wanted to eat my face off afterwards - but I didn't. I hydrated, ate my GU, and stuck to the plan. It was hard...

With all this being said - here are some pro's and cons this time around... Then I will get to what you REALLY want to know... the weight loss. 

Crabby, headache, lack of energy, leg muscle cramps, and did I mention crabby:)

Good skin, bloat gone, less of an appetite, and weight loss. 

This is not hard on your stomach - or at least not mine - so in case you were wondering. 

Weight Loss:
Starting Weight: 144 lbs
End Weight: 136 lbs

Total loss of 8 lbs

What I am taking from this... These past two weeks have been hard. Hard to keep up with running, my new class is waaaay more work, personal struggles, and all around sheer exhaustion. So I would of normally been stress eating like crazy - but I didn't... I stuck to the plan and saw results.

I am glad I did it... Advocare for the win. If you are interested in getting yourself some - check out Ashley's button on the right side of my page. It's worth it, in my book.

Go Cards

Thursday, October 24, 2013

One more day and my girls (throwback Thursday style)...

I am on the LAST day of the Advocare cleanse - the LAST day. I will be drinking my last fiber drink and downing my last 2 probiotic pills. This has been a rough one for me, for many reasons. Training for the marathon, school, personal things, post-season baseball, and all that dang Halloween candy BUT... I can say I didn't cheat - except for Ranch on a salad, ONCE, and cream in my coffee. I made it 10 days and I hopped on the scale this morning and will have a reveal post up tomorrow. Not going to give it away - just yet...

I am very much looking forward to a GNO tomorrow night with my besties, Beth, Bridget, Sarah, and Melissa. ALL BLOGLESS! These girls have been my sistas since 3rd grade, high school, and college. I miss their faces, our antics, and reminiscing... I feel very thankful to have these girls still in my LIFE. If you are interested in learning more about these girls - I did a post on them when I first started blogging - you can check it out HERE. If not - you can take a stroll down memory lane with me, with a little throw back Thursday for ya...

Take it to the 'bridge" et... and I
Who is Melissa getting ready to fight? Mama said knock you out;)
Oh Vegas how I love thee... 
From start to finish... My girl Beth.
Lisa, Bridget, Beth, Sarah, and I
If you haven't heard my girl Holly is having a great give-a-way today - get yourself $50 smackaroo's for the weekend - for what? NADA!!! Score... 

Have a great Thursday and I will be back tomorrow with my 10 Day Herbal Advocare Cleanse Final Update.

It is What it is...

Starting the cleanse or just finish - thoughts? Coffee Cream freak like me? Friday night plans?

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Can't Nobody Take My Pride, Uh-uh,

"Uh - Uh, can't nobody hold me down, ohh no, I got to keep on movin... Broken glass everywhere, if it ain't about the..." Oh P Diddy, when you are you going to invite me to your 4th of July white party? Never... I get it... I should throw my own - in K9Bish's backyard. HAHAHA

First things first - HAPPY WORLD SERIES DAY! I have said that 18 million times this morning and it still doesn't get old. One of my fav girls of all time, Erin, from Shes A Big Star and I have this bet... if the Sox wins she takes over my blog for a day - if the Cards win I take over hers. I am writing my post now;) Mwah!

Credit for Image HERE
Okay so I was reading Steph's post and it got me thinking... I am 33 and I am not getting any younger and I am finally in a "place" where I think I am gaining confidence in who I am... So with that being said, here is my list of what I have learned or do, now I am getting older...

-  Smiling is my favorite - period. Why go through life with a "pussface" - no fun in that?

-  Take risks here and there - why not? Could turn out to be a good thing and if not - you learned something.

-  Laugh A LOT... keeps those face muscles exercised/tight and most everyone looks adorable doing it.

-  Don't put up with things you don't want to. Nix it quickly... Done and Done.

-  Hug and kiss your babies a million times a day - it goes by way to quickly.

-  Let go of the past, live in the moment, and don't fear the future - even if you know with that comes wrinkles, love handles, and gray hair.

-  Don't let others bring you down - rise above - YOU ARE BETTER THAN THAT.

-  Keep your good friends close - don't neglect them. When life gets in the way make sure they know you miss/love them.

-  Roll with the changes - change is inevitable, STOP trying to stagnant - it will only hurt in the long run.

-  Passion - have it, use it, find it... It is what keeps the fire inside.

-  Let things go - life's too short BUT... stand up for yourself - good balance here.

-  Stop making excuses - DO IT! There is NEVER a right time for anything - there is just TIME.

Well I think I have laid it all out there on #jesushalfday (my and Kimmy's new version of Hump Day) - like it so much better than the word "hump".

Smiling IS my favorite

What have you learned? Sox or Cards? Hump Day or JesusHalfDay?

Tuesday, October 22, 2013

Tuesday Randoms...

Tuesday (worst day of the week) is here... Let's get started...

My phone is STILL not here. I have officially been phoneless for 10 days and on the cleanse for 8. Lethal combo I tell you... "What, you see my hand twitching... say whaaaa? you looking at me funny, nah...I KNOW you didn't use my pen without asking, let me borrow that phone for a few..." and so the saga continues... I NEED MY PHONE & BREAD! 

Actually this is how I tease my hair;)

I started a new class last night and it is in a new building (not right across the street from my work) - boo:( But, hey... guess what? I am into class 2 for the program already. CRAZY how time is going to fly by. Bring on more madness, I tell you - I totally have things under control right now - NOT!

I am sorry I am not sorry,  but this had me rolling on the floor...

I won't be dressing up this year for Halloween and that makes me sad. I wanted to be Cher from Clueless this year - but that will have to wait until next. I am a Halloween freak and this will be 2 years in a row I didn't go out... BOO:( Next year I am doing it up... 

I am headed back into the gym. I will be signing up for the first time in 7 years. I have not had a gym membership in FOREVA! I am realistically only going to be able to to go about 3 times a week, with one of those days being Wednesday night when Elle dances - the other two being the weekend. I am going to take 2 classes on Wednesday night and then do my own stuff on the weekend. This will all be AFTER the marathon - right now I am focused on training and making it 26.2 miles without keeling over and dying. 

This week I have challenged myself to get up each morning and look nice at work. No throwing on whatever, pulling my hair up, and walking out the door. I want to feel good this week - so I made it 2 days in a row. I would show you all, BUT... no phone. Womp.Womp.Womp. When it gets up and running I will. 

Alright that is enough randomness for the day. Cards play tomorrow and that my friends is a reason to SMILE on the worst day of the week. BIRDS!

Do you go to a gym - thoughts? Cher obsessed like me? Do you use a teasing brush or comb?

Monday, October 21, 2013

Advocare Update and Monday Thangs...

Monday, it's here. Cards are going to the World Series and I am eating sushi on Friday night. Two focal points this week;)

Advocare Update

Today is Day 7 and I made it through the weekend. Here are a few things I am noticing/have noticed:
-  Not hungry often
-  Drinking a ton of water
-  Running on the cleanse is extremely hard - feeling like not much in me to keep going out there.
-  Crabbiness is fading
-  Skin looking clear
-  No stomach issues
-  More tired than usual
-  Sleeping great

I am chugging along just fine... I have my moments when those Russel Stover Coconut Haystacks are screaming my name from my pantry, when my kids are enjoying the biscuits and gravy I made for breakfast, and/or when I see someone drinking a cold beer BUT... it's getting easier.

Typical Food for the day...
Breakfast - 2 hard boiled eggs and a banana
Snack - apple
Lunch - this nut mix I made (raisins, almonds, sunflower seeds, etc...), carrots, and chicken breast
Snack - edamame
Dinner - protein, veggie, and fruit

I have been downing water like no other - and I am STILL drinking my coffee WITH cream. We are over the half way mark here - and in the home stretch. Only 4 more days to go. YAY! Then, Friday I am hitting up my favorite sushi spot with my 4 homegirls. I miss them and can't wait to eat, drink, and plan our Chitown trip in June. It's our 35th b-day girls trip (one year early)... #leggo

This upcoming week, my marathon training schedule had me scale back to 24 miles, but honestly... the cleanse HAD me scale it back even more. I ran a total of 18 miles this week - those 6 I needed to get in, I am chalking up to lack of energy and/or carbs.

This week my marathon training schedule looks like this:
Monday - 4 miles
Tuesday - 3 miles
Wednesday - 4 miles
Thursday - Rest or Cross Train
Friday - 6 miles
Saturday - Rest or Cross Train
Sunday - 14 miles

Monday Out
How is the cleanse going for you? How was your weekend? Going to be in Chicago in June?

Friday, October 18, 2013

A little Friday Personal History... and Advocare Update

Well I love a good question and answer session... So here goes... I took this off the web somewhere.

What was one of the best parties you’ve ever been to?
My girlfriends and I threw some epic parties in the Burg in college. I would imagine the one where the basement rail came off, the tub was broken, it was packed inside and out, the cops came, and the bathroom housed more people than we could imagine;)

What was the last movie, TV show or book that made you cry or tear up?
I don't cry, often,  BUT... Rudy gets me every time. 

What’s the hardest thing you’ve ever done?
Good question. I have a hard time letting go ~ so without going into much detail - letting go of someone(things). When you know you have to, but you don't want to. 

What was the last experience that made you a stronger person?
I dealt with some family things a few years ago that helped me to dig deep down and figure a few things out about who I was. I believe it made it me stronger

What did you do growing up that got you into trouble?
Ummmmm... A lot... I am not going into details - BUT... I was always home on time - or around home;)

When was the last time you had an amazing meal?
I am on the cleanse Day 4 and this question just makes me mad.. but everything does right now. I would say a week or so ago I made this to.die.for pasta dish. It was delish.

What’s the best/worst gift you’ve ever given/received?
Best Gift... my children of course and/or my vacuum;) Worst gift - roses NOT in a box. Oh Beth, Bridget, Sarah - remember this one. I was high maintenance even back then. 

What do you miss most about being a kid?
Never worrying about anything except who I was going to hang out with next and/or living near the ocean.

What is your first memory of being really excited?
I was young, say 3 or 4 and we lived in St. Augustine, FL and our backyard was the beach. I remember getting so excited every morning knowing I was going to play in the sand all day. I miss the salt life - bad.

What was the first thing you bought with your own money?
I am sure something awesome like a B.U.M. sweatshirt that would go down in history as I sang and danced to "The LoCo Motion" on the big screen at Six Flags. Girls you were right there with me - drummer Bridget;)

When was the last time you were nervous?
Monday afternoon knowing my final exam was Monday night. I don't get nervous too easily. 

What is something you learned in the last week?
I'm on the cleanse so this week everything is invalid. My mind is not right... I learned I am not as "cool and collective" as I tend to think I am. I think too much, sometimes get hurt too easily, and need to get my head out of my as*. 

What story does your family always tell about you?
Well, Well, Well... the infamous one they love to tell is when I went up and took a chunk out of my mom's tush when I was a wee babe. 

At what age did you become an adult?
Honestly I still don't feel like one - but I can say - maybe? 31

Have you ever had something happen to you that you thought was bad but it turned out to be for the best?
Yes, most definitely. At the time it always seems like the end of the world - but in the long run we always learn something. This kinda happens all to often in my life. 
Advocare Update
I am officially on Day 4. I had the 3 day headaches, the cravings, the crabbiness but... I think that is all subsiding. I feel like when you are on this cleanse you are not just cleansing "you know what" you are also mentally cleansing. You get angry, sad, frustrated and start to re-evaluate not only your eating habits but life in general, or at least this happens to me. I feel like day 4 you start to think "straight" again and maybe in a different way than you did before the cleanse. 

I am eating the same things - eggs, veggies, fruits, chicken, etc... I have had creamer in my coffee every day but only one cup and I don't care - I HAVE TO. My skin is starting to look great - it always glows on this cleanse and yet I haven't stepped on the scale - my jeans (yes I am wearing jeans - gasp...) are looser today.

Weekends are hard - so I have Day 5 and 6 to make through. I know I can get through them and you all can too. Mind over Matter baby... and here is to being enlightened - Cleanse Day 4 "got my mind right" again.


Tell me your cleansing update? What age do you feel you became an adult? I miss you all on IG and twitter - waaaah...

Thursday, October 17, 2013

My thoughts on running back to back races...

Disclaimer: I am NOOOOOOOO running expert and the majority of the REAL running experts would say to NOT run races back to back - to at least give yourself a few months to recover. 

So when I am told I can't do something - what do I do? DO IT!!!! #rebel - yeah... not really...

Half-Marathon Fall 2013 Racing
IVS Half Marathon - Peoria, IL - 09/08/13
Fort4Fitness Half Marathon - Ft. Wayne, IN - 09/28/13
MO Cowbell Half Marathon- St. Charles, MO - 10/06/13
GO St. Louis Halloween Half - St. Louis, MO - 10/13/13 (sorry no race recap yet)

Four halves in six weeks. I did it... Did I die, nah... but I do have a few thoughts...

Prepare to be exhausted - mentally and physically. Your body will ache and mentally you are telling yourself to keep going, going, going... Know you CAN push through the exhaustion, but it will be hard. 

Scale back on the runs during the week. Get some mileage in but don't push it. This was hard since I am consecutively training for the marathon in December. I learned after Illinois to listen to my body - when it is tired, rest. 

Eat and hydrate well. Hydrate, Hydrate, Hydrate... your tired, sore, swollen muscles need it. Your body needs healthy nutrition - not White Castle. I noticed when I ate bad I ran bad - it was harder to get myself going the morning of the races. Fort4Fitness, when I got my PR, I ate well the week of, the day/night before, and the morning of and BAM... that race all the starts aligned.

Massage those muscles post race. I have found a new love - going directly to the Medical tents upon finishing to get stretched. Why have I never done this before - helloooo? I stretch the night of the race and I am always sore for the next two days, so I massage my calves, hamstrings, etc... I am also a big fan of my procompression socks for recovery. Massage and compression help me - haven't done the ice bath yet - that just flat out scares me. 

Read the race information. Familiarize yourself with packet pick up, directions to the start line, THE COURSE ITSELF, finish line, what will be given at the finish line, etc... You will be spending a ton of your time picking up race packets and that can be a challenge in itself - less anxiety when you know where you are going and what to expect. 

Know the course beforehand. If you are running back to back, you might change your goals per each race. It might not be PR, PR, PR for each one. For instance, the cowbell was NOT about PRing for me - it was about getting in the mileage, supporting a friend, and enjoying the scenery.

Recruit others to run, support, and keep you going. Knowing you have someone at the finish line to hug can push your tired legs further. Seeing friends/making friends on the course can make time go by faster. Having those around you support your running craziness, makes all the difference in the world. 

Run for a reason. A certain charity that resonates with you, to support those first timers out on the course, to see new places, make new friends, etc... Run with a purpose - it keeps you going.


Any other back to back or racing questions you might have? Please feel free to comment below and I will email you back. Make sure if you leave a comment you are not a no-reply blogger or else I won't be able to chit chat with you... I email everyone back and want to make sure I get to converse with you:)


FYI... Tomorrow will NOT be about running - I promise:) I feel like I sound like a broken record lately.

Wednesday, October 16, 2013

Advocare Day 1 Update - 1,2,3,4....

get your booty on the floor, gotta gotta get up... (now sing that all day)

It's Wednesday peeps and the freaking Cards are up 3-1 in the NLCS... To say I am stoked is an understatement. You know when you love something so much you just can't help but have permagrin - yeah... that's me...

Phone update ~ I will be phoneless for another 3 days or so... Womp.Womp.Womp. - should be back up by the weekend - THANK HEAVENS! 

Did I mention we bobbed for apples this weekend and guess who went first because the prize was either a box of Swedish Fish or bag of cotton candy?... This girl right "hurrrr" stepped up to the plate FIRST and totally got that apple and bag of cotton candy... Oh... the kids did great too:)

What I am listening to this week (just a few)... Check, Check, it out... 
Troy Noka ft. Mista F.A.B. - Gettin It 
Lupe Fiasco - Peace of Paper/Cup of Jayzus 
Pusha T ft. Chris Brown - Sweet Serenade 
Rick Ross Ft. Future - No Games

Advocare Day One 
I was starving and crabby but I made it through. I ate well... eggs, nuts, turkey, carrots, lettuce... all that rabbit food. I didn't get in all the H2O I needed - so I need to work on that. No stomach issues and feeling somewhat tired, but besides that I am doing okay... Onto Day 2. I did run 3 miles last night and that was tougher than usual. My legs are still tired from Sunday and my body is lacking fuel from the cleanse but I cranked it out and got it in. 

On to Day 2 - only 9 days to go. WOOP! We totally got this guys... Mind over Matter...

Wednesday Out

How is the cleanse going for you? Cards lovaaaaaa? What new jams should I know about?

Tuesday, October 15, 2013

Advocare Day 1, Rewards, & Ramblings...

Tuesday (worst of the day week) is here. I am up to drink my Fiber drink, take my loves to school, and then I am headed back under my covers. I am spent, exhausted, and my mind is not thinking right. I NEED REST. Physically and Mentally I am calling myself O.U.T. - so I am taking a day and catching up on things AKA sleep. Racing every weekend, 3 papers due last Monday, and my final last night PLUS all the other activities on the weekend - yeah... I know #worldstiniestviolin

Plans for today are to rest in the AM, get my bum to the grocery store and stock up on my greens/fruits and proteins, run 3 miles, and pick my babes up from school.

I decided to throw in a reward for myself if I complete the 10 Day cleanse without any cheating. I do better knowing there is something good waiting on the horizon. If I make it to the 20th (registration deadline) cheatless (yes I made that word up) then I am rewarding myself with another half... the St. Louis Rock N Roll on Sunday, October 27th. I have always wanted to run this race with all the cool bands, spectators, and different course through downtown St. Louis. If I did good up until then - then SIGN ME UP! Don't worry Holly and Laura I will run this one solo;) I will pull a "show up, shut up, and run" kinda morning.

Oh... and a second reward - if I get to run the RnR half and I PR... then that reward will be a few new outfits for my trip back to San Diego in November. Cali I miss you terribly and can't wait to relish in your salty air soon.

I hope everyone is enjoying those fabulous Fiber Drinks this morning - I know I sure did;) Miss you all since I am sans phone... and I hope to be back up in business soon.

Since I am working on my computer I was going through some old pics... Look at my babies in 2010 - sweetness... I love my babies and think the next time we do pics we might do Christmas one's again. Interested in a good photographer check out Kelly Reinholz Photography. I have been using her since my kids were tiny. We are skipping pics this year and will be doing them again next year. I am kind of sad we won't have them this year, but that gives me a year to be in svelte shape - LOL:)

Oh Happy Day...

How is the cleanse going today? Plans for the week? Racing this weekend (I am secretly kind of missing it already)?

Monday, October 14, 2013

Advocare Take 3

Morning everyone. Sorry I have been slackin on my pimpin AKA not able to get on IG, twitter, etc... my phone is dead and will not charge, yet again... So I am without phone for the second time in a week. Please feel free to email me at

I will have my race recap from the Go St. Louis Halloween Half tomorrow (phone dead so a race recap without pics is no fun) - today is about CLEANSING. 

Tomorrow many of us start the Advocare Cleanse. You all know that I had great results the first time I did this and that is because I actually stuck to the plan consistently... Read about it HERE - If you are not sure what Advocare is - you can read about it HERE 

Holly and I decided we wanted to do the cleanse to jump start our healthy eating. I have been racing so much lately and my eating habits are not the best right now. So I called up my girl Ashley who is a distributor and she jumped on board too. YAY... Ashley's button is on the right side of my page if you are interested in purchasing or you can click HERE. You can read about her profit's going to Baby Harper HERE

Tomorrow is the DAY... if you are on board - read THIS - it was my "bible" during the first cleanse and it was a GREAT resource... I will be doing a small section in my posts each day regarding how I am feeling what I am eating, etc... it helps... Don't forget to use the hashtag #HELLanie on IG, twitter, etc... so we can all support/encourage one another through this. I always do better when I know others are with me;)

Also check out Holly's page today - she has great info...

Best of luck to everyone who is joining in the cleansing fun and as soon as my phone is back up and running I will be back on IG, twitter, etc... Right now it will be email and my blog for a bit and please feel free to email me...

Cleansing ON - YOU IN?

Wednesday, October 9, 2013

Here is the plan Stan.... October Goals

I thought I could get through October with ZERO goals but I can't. I am such a planner/organizer and I MUST fill my life with chaos...

So... since I am a believer in writing things down... Here I go...

1.  I am starting the 10 Day Advocare Cleanse on Tuesday the 15th - why Tuesday? because I can... I have
    done this in the past with great results - so I am hitting up Ash for some "goods". She is going to do it with
    me too;) Misery loves company... nah.. it isn't that bad.

2. Stop throwing everything down my throat as soon as I walk in the door from work. I need to stock up on
    nuts, granola, etc...

3. Eat breakfast during appropriate breakfast times - NOT noon.

4. Try out new "healthy" recipes. I love to cook, but I like to cook like Paula Dean - more "butta". I need to
    change my way of thinking.

5. Start using body glide consistently - after my race in Ft. Wayne I was chaffed under my (.)(.) area so bad.
    Then it healed and I did it all over again at last weekends half. OUCH! I am done... Must remember to

In other news - I have my 4th half this Fall season on Sunday - I will be dressing up for this Halloween run as a RETRO GIRL. YAY. Then I signed up for the St. Jude Give Thanks Walk/Run 5K on November 23rd and I am still training for the St. Jude Marathon in Memphis on Dec 7th.

Oh and my FINAL for my class is next Monday, and then I start my 2nd class of my MBA program. OMG time is flying.... and I am getting exhausted - so with that being said.... I am going to take off TR and FR from blogging. You all know I will stay "legit" on IG (@missmel_joy) and I will return on Monday with a good ole race recap... Thanks for your patience my friends...

Smile it's Hump Day - said everyone... and it makes me cringe... 

Wednesday (and the rest of the week) Out

Wanna join the cleanse fun? Tell me some healthy snacky foods you love? To.die.for. healthy recipes my family will actually eat and like?

Tuesday, October 8, 2013

Run, Run, Run and my mind is right again...

My phone is "work around" fixed so it's good to go for now. Apple store you are not my favorite but the tech guy was knowledgeable... so PLUS. I can finally breathe again and get my Cards stats live again. Whew... Oh yes...

You all know that Holly and I ran the MO Cowbell Half Marathon on Sunday in St. Charles - if you didn't know, one year ago I ran my first race ever and that was the Cowbell - read it HERE. This is where my love for racing/running began. 

Sunday morning I got my booty out of bed and hit the road to head to St. Charles to meet Holly Bells by 6:45 A.M. I am not going to lie, I was pumped to run my 3rd half marathon in 5 weeks. I didn't eat before this race again and I think I found my niche... hydration to the max and less food - it works for me NOT saying it works for everyone. 

Visited with Chris and the Stanfield clan for a bit and off we went to the start line. It was cool and breezy and I LOVED IT. I absolutely love running in colder weather and having my Nike pull over on, made me super comfy:) Took a quick race photo before hand, people rang their cowbells, saw our girl Kim, and off we went. 

I was running this race WITH Holly - we kept a good pace and I talked to her while she nodded;) Time went by so quickly knowing she was right there with me. Chris and their bambinos came out to cheer her on around mile 10 and it was adorable. One of my favorite parts. I also absolutely love running through New Town - it's it own little world. So peaceful and beautiful. 

Mile 10 came quickly and it was a steady hill until around almost mile 11. I sort of sprinted up the hill since I am really trying to work on getting more "hills" in on my training. The run felt great. 13.1 miles is not so shabby lately - I finished, grabbed a water, and waited for Holly to finish. I was listening to the man announce the finishers and as soon as I heard "Holly from St. Charles - Holly hates running and...." I knew it was her. LMAO! I was laughing so hard and hugged her big time (Sir Hugs A Lot here). We headed straight to the Medical tents to get stretched out and off we went home.

I am so proud of Holly - she worked HARD on this race. I know she was kind of "blah" about not PRing but she really put work in and I could tell. Congrats Holls for shaving 10 minutes off your time - that is almost a minute a mile... that's awesome!

Now... here we go for half marathon #4 in 7 weeks on Sunday - we are running the GO St. Louis Halloween Half Marathon in downtown St. Louis AND... Laura (K9Bish) is running too - YAY! Then I take a break from running for awhile until the St. Jude 5K/walk here in November and the St. Jude Marathon in December.

Run It
Racing this weekend? New Town fan? Apple Store hater?

Monday, October 7, 2013

Winner Winner....

That sure ain't (yes I from SoCo) what my Birds are screaming today. Womp.Womp.Womp. - they need to get it TOGETHER... and give us St. Louis peeps our Red October madness back...

In other news, my Iphone is dead and right about now I am in full on "can't function" mode. Did it work for the race, yes... did Siri start asking herself questions for an hour, yes... then did the little round button stop workin, yes... and now it's dead and won't charge up... I am managing... but please forgive me if I am not responding in a timely manner.

I wanted to do a recap of the race, my marathon training week 3 update, and brag on my babies BUT... that will have to wait - dang phone...

So here you go... Thank you ALL for participating in the fun KLR giveaway. A couple of my new pieces came in and I can't wait to show you - I wore one outfit on Saturday night and LOVED it... Get yourself over to KLR and check out the fun new fall items.

The WINNERS of the KLR $50.00 gift cards are....

Kelly Williams & Deanna Williams

Alright sweet ladies - email me at

Alright I will be back tomorrow and hopefully my phone is back in order. I need to go get my mind right... If anyone needs me today and to whenever I get to the Apple store - you can reach me at the email address above. Thanks...

Friday, October 4, 2013

My Thoughts on Perception...

It's Friday - BOOYA!!!! and if you missed out yesterday on the awesome giveaway from Kiki La'Rue you are CRAZY - BUT... luckily you are still in time to get yourself in the mix. Check it out HERE. Both winners announced on Monday... YAY! 

I read this post HERE yesterday from Simply Sami - Haley from guest posted for her while she moves into her new house... and it got my mind wandering. First off, Haley is from around St. Louis and her and her sisters are amazing... They are fit, gorgeous, and genuinely kind. I feel like I know them already, yet we still haven't met up... *cough, cough - meet up soon*.

Haley's post hit on "what we perceive as strong and fit" and I believe it is about time I dive into my true feelings. I tend to stay neutral on many topics... but YES... I am going there. I am on Pinterest and see what pins people post as "motivating" and, being honest, I roll my eyes A LOT. I am a FIRM believer in using photos/quotes to keep you motivated and give you a "goal" to reach, BUT sometimes I just.don'

Everyone's perception of strong, healthy, beautiful, etc... is different and I get that - but being realistic is important to me as well. When I have a goal I am trying to reach I want to REALISTICALLY reach that goal - because, the person I am feels defeated if I don't attain it. This is just me and I KNOW me, so I try to keep my goals attainable. You all know the pics I am referring to - YES you can GET there but in a month... I just don't know?

Long soapbox short... I have come to realize that my perception of beauty is not about comparing myself to the photos. I want to FEEL strong, healthy, beautiful, etc... There is NOTHING better to me than waking up, looking in the mirror, and feeling STRONG... Comparison makes me feel defeated and I want to be done with that. I just need to remind myself each day that I AM STRONG, HEALTHY, HAPPY - I want to just be ME... I want to be active with my kids, run my face off, squat like no other, plank like a mother, laugh with everyone, try new exercises, build up my endurance, and wake up happy each day. 

Will toned arms, a nice tush, great legs make me happy? SURE... but feeling STRONG and HAPPY, regardless, is what I strive for.

Weekend On

Your thoughts on perception? What is a goal you are striving for this month/year? 

Thursday, October 3, 2013

Kiki La'Rue Giveaway Day... and my job...

Morning my friends... One day closer to the weekend - whoop! Guess what? Tomorrow is Jeans day at my work and most of you don't know, but this is HUGE for my dept. Honestly it was just about 2 years ago that we were able to STOP wearing knee highs or hose. It was a policy that our feet MUST be covered with socks or hose at all times. After much deliberation, this policy was changed. We get to wear jeans about twice a year and once is always when the Birds (St. Louis Cardinals) start post season baseball. Soooo... thank you Cards!

I am a firm believer in professionalism in the workplace and in your everyday life - so I understood the philosophy behind this "no barefoot visible" policy. Once you change the policy for everyone - who knows what you might see? You will have some that will show up dressed business casual with cute little peep toed kitten heels on, THEN... you will have those that show up looking like they are going to the beach for the afternoon. Once you loosen the reigns - be prepared for the unexpected. I also believe that you must take risks and move with the times. You don't see that many women in hose anymore day to day - so switch it up - just make sure your policies are set even down to the detail.

If you all don't know - I love my job. I mean LOOOOOOOOOVEEEEE my job... I love getting dressed up each day and coming into the office. It makes me feel good. I love doing my hair, putting on make-up, picking out my outfits, changing shoes a million times, and/or throwing on some adorable accessories, etc... Getting myself out of bed and making myself look presentable just makes ME feel good. You all know I am a TRUE sweats and hats girl on the weekend, but during the week I take pride in being "Professional Mel". 
One quote I have lived by since I started working at the little ole age 15 is "Dress for the job you want - not for the job you have". I remind myself this all the time... 

On that note, thanks for listening to my rant and now for the REAL reason you are here.... The Kiki La'Rue giveaway!!!! Remember... there will be TWO winners - each receive a $50.00 giftcard:) The giveaway will run until Sunday night... Monday I will announce the winners. All you have to do is make sure you are following my blog and myself on IG @missmel_joy AND follow Kiki La'Rue on FB, IG @shopkikilarue, and Pinterest. For an added entry - you can post on FB what you are currently coveting from KLR:) Best of luck my friends...

Here are a few of my KLR pieces... I also have the Gemma earrings I so love... And I recently just got a few more items I can't wait to show you...

a Rafflecopter giveaway a Rafflecopter giveaway

Wednesday, October 2, 2013

Giveaway Coming at ya... and a few of my own thoughts...

Happy Hump Day my friends... In case you didn't know, I loathe that saying...

Dwayne makes all things better;)
But... you know what I don't loathe? FREE STUFF & CLOTHES - make that a combo... and BAM!

I have a SUPER exciting giveaway coming at ya tomorrow. The giveaway is for TWO (yes my loves, that is TWO) $50.00 gift cards from Kiki La' Rue. I am so ready for some new fall clothes. I can't wait to snuggle up with a cozy sweater, kick around in some funky leggings with a long tunic or cardigan, and/or hit the fall weddings in an adorable dress. 

I am LOVING the Boyfriend Maxi - super comfy and flowy, the Ashley Button Back Top - I am getting this one today, and the Lion Bracelet in Gold- lion jewelry is kind of my "thang". You can't go wrong with a Lenore Infinity Scarf either, and that mint color is screaming my name. So.... check out KLR and come on back tomorrow to enter the giveaway. YAY YA!!!!

I indulged in my glorious Swedish Fish last night and it was pure heaven. Yes I ate that entire bag and NO I don't feel bad for doing it. I doctored my disgusting blister on my foot and relaxed the night away - it felt GREAT. I haven't worked out since the half and I am TOTALLY okay with that - I needed a rest/break but today I am ready to get back on the CRAZY TRAIN!

Elle has dance tonight and I am running solo with both the kids - so I am going to do a nice 3 mile walk while carrying Wes man in my Boba G3, while she dances. Then I hope to get a 5 mile run in after the kiddo's hit the hay. Back at it peeps! Consistency is Key...

Come back tomorrow for the super stellar giveaway!!!! AND... for your Daily Dose of the Kotte Kids...

Happy Wednesday (not hump day)

Baby wearing fan? Fav gummy candy? Ready for some KLR giveaway fun?

Tuesday, October 1, 2013

September Goals and Marathon Training Week 2 Update

It's Tuesday - the worst day of the week;)

Marathon Week 2 Training Update

Training Schedule in BLACK - What I actually did in GREENISH BLUE
Monday, Sept 23rd - 3 miles or Rest / REST
Tuesday, Sept 24th - 3-4 miles or Cross Train / 3 Miles
Wednesday, Sept 25th - 4 miles / 5 Miles
Thursday, Sept 26th - Cross Train or Rest / REST
Friday, Sept 27th- 4-6 miles / REST
Saturday, Sept 28th - Rest / 13.1 Miles
Sunday, Sept 29th - 8-10 miles / REST

Total Miles Week 1 of Training = 21.1 MILES

- with the half this past weekend, I scaled back a tad on the miles and took two rest days off before the half. I REALLY am glad I did and will most likely do this before every race from here on out.

- this week's schedule looks just like the one above - I AM going to get up my mileage by 3 or 4 miles though. I have the MO Cowbell Half Marathon on Sunday so I want my legs rested up a bit for that race as well but I need to stick with my marathon training.


Alright... it's time to recap my September goals and see if I kept up my end of the bargain? I wrote about my September goals HERE.

Here they were:
- Plank a Day Challenge... (with Melissa) 
yeah NOPE... didn't do but a week. FAIL

- Squats every day - find the dang time... 
I stuck to this pretty well. I am going with PASS

- Stick to my training schedule 
PASS with a few minor changes here and there

- One cheat day a week - yes a whole day because my meals turn into a day... no shame in the game... FAIL - I ate. I ate better but I ate... I need to just give this one up... I mean, honestly.

- No Swedish Fish ALL month - I am dying on the inside thinking about this... 
PASS and I am dying to get my hands on a bag tonight.

- Booze... ONCE a week - that's it... shouldn't be too terrible, but football and beer go together like Big Sexy hairspray and me;) 
PASS - actually I don't think I even drank once a week. I really cut out booze and it wasn't the end of the world. 

All in all 2 FAIL's and 4 PASSES - I am pretty pleased with last month's goal challenge:)

In other running news - have you heard about the Hot Chocolate 15/5K that is coming to St. Louis for the FIRST time December 15th? This run not only has some delish swag / adorable zip ups / and a chocolate filled post race party but the BEST part is the charity is the Ronald McDonald House Charities of St. Louis.

I would run this race, but I am running the St. Jude Marathon the week before so I am taking a hiatus from racing for a bit after that. If you are interested - Emily from Running Like a Mother is having a great giveaway today (post should be up soon) for a free entry for the run (the cost is $65.00 dollars) so check it out!


How did your Sept goals go? Running the Cowbell this weekend? Thoughts on the Hot Chocolate Race?