Fall Friends and Family Fest

Spending time with old friends and family do wonders for the soul. We’ve been lucky enough to host and visit a slew of friends and family in the past month. We reminisced, laughed at how ‘old’ we’ve gotten and had fun just hanging around in sweats having a cocktail or two.

Our first guests of the fall were our friends Ryan and Claire. They’ve been friends of ours for about a decade now (what?!) and currently live in Rhode Island. Huge Colorado State fans, we planned their trip for a visit two years ago when the 2016 CSU football team announced a game at Minnesota. Needless to say we’d been looking forward to it for some time.

While not all of the fun things I had planned came to fruition thanks to crummy weather and most of us coming down with bad colds, we had a great time! Here are a few highlights.


A few days after they left, we drove to Omaha to celebrate my Great Uncle Dan’s 75th birthday. It was a mini-family reunion of sorts. Unfortunately my dad and stepmom were out of the country and my Walker siblings away at school, but it was so much fun having almost the entire family together. It was fun introducing my kids to extended family and just celebrating as we used to on holidays when I was growing up.

Once back home, we only had to wait a few more days for my sorority sister Kirsten and her husband Brandon to arrive. Kirsten rocked the Medtronic Twin Cities 10 Miler! It was definitely fun to be a spectator for once. Ella and I also ran the Family Mile. She finished it in 12 minutes which I’m pretty sure is faster than I ran my first mile!


We had better luck with babysitters and were out and about all weekend.

Ah, it was a like a breathe of fresh air being with them. I definitely ate and drank too much and ran too little, but I wouldn’t trade a moment of it.

Just this past weekend we also were treated to a visit from Josh’s parents. We enjoyed a nice dinner, took in a show at the Guthrie Theater and went on a train ride with the entire family. It was another great weekend.

Next weekend, it’s off to Indianapolis for the Monumental Half. I’ll have to write a little update on how training has shaped up. It’s been quite a ride these past several weeks. Can’t wait for more visitors, even if it isn’t until we thaw in the spring!

Super Sunday

Super. It was a super Sunday in Colorado this week. The Super Bowl excitement was in full swing and I had a long run planned. It was going to be a great day, I knew it when I went to bed on Saturday night.

About that…

Ella woke up screaming about having a bad dream at about 5am. Josh got her to quiet back down as Anderson had just woken up about 15 minutes earlier and was eating. She started screaming again about a half hour later. Being it was the weekend, I was really trying to get to sleep in until at least 7. I picked Ella and her blanket up and we tucked ourselves into the bed in the guest room. For about a half hour so she laid with me before telling me she need to pee and wanted waffles. You just can refuse when a two year old says that.

We ate our breakfast together, ran out in snow boots as fast as we could to collect the paper from the driveway without slipping and colored a big picture from her Sesame Street coloring book before the boys woke up. I was dragging by the time I was ready to go do the long run I’d been looking forward to all week, knowing it was going to be inside because it was too snowy and icy outside.

I forced myself out the door and by my third mile I was feeling great! When the treadmill cut me off at the hour mark, I had already covered almost 6.5 miles. I ate some fruit snacks, drank my Nuuns and started it up for a few more miles. By 1:30 I’d covered 10 miles at around a 9:30 pace. It’s nice to know that endurance should not going to be a problem for the half in May, especially if I can go 10 miles on one pack of fruit snacks. I do need to work on speed if I’m going to get my sub 1:50.

With a run under my belt I was excited to go to the Annual Gilbert Super Bowl Party.

Anderson Super Bowl

Jess and Anderson Josh and Anderson SB

Unfortunately we ended up having to laugh at the comedy of errors that was the Broncos game. At least we got to eat good food…and eat I did. Ella had fun playing with the kids and liked watching a movie rather than the game. Can’t blame her.

We had a great time and maybe, just maybe the Broncos can do it again, with a win, next year.

F is for Football

Ella has a new favorite sport…football. It all started when there was a bad thunderstorm one night that scared her. Josh brought her back downstairs from bed to cuddle and watch some football. Since that night, she asks about football all the time. She talks about thunderstorms, or ‘horses running in the sky,’ and how she will need to watch football with daddy the next time they come.

It just so happens that our CSU Rams had a home game on a nice fall afternoon. We headed up to Fort Collins for the afternoon. We met our friends for a little tailgating which was more about food than booze. Oh how times have changed. Ella and her friend loved hanging out together. How cute are these two with their little purses and holding hands?

photo 1

To get some of their energy out, they bounced their little hearts out in the bounce house just outside the stadium.

We made it inside the stadium just in time for the first touchdown and the canon to be shot.

photo 2

Ella loved it almost as much as she loved screaming ‘Go Ra-ams!’ at the top of her lungs. Around half time I took Ella to get some ice cream after a little crash on a stadium chair. We ran into our mascot, CAM the Ram who Ella was super excited to high five. Of course I didn’t have my phone with me with take a picture. I was so bummed.

Anderson slept through most of the game, but did make an appearance for a few pictures.

20130928_143831_resized 20130928_143712_resized

It was a long game, but they actually won which was great! We were all worn out after missing nap time. Ella, Anderson and I all passed out about the time we got out of the parking lot. Too bad the rest of the games are late afternoon games that will likely be too cold to take the kids to, because Ella had a great time!

Pre-Thanksgiving Trip

Millions of people are taking to the roads as we speak to go see relatives for Thanksgiving. Not us, we got that out of the way last weekend. When we realized we were going to end up staying in Colorado for Thanksgiving we decided we better try to get back to Lincoln some time before the end of the year. Just so happens last weekend was the only weekend that would work.

We packed up Ella, Lucky and way too much stuff and headed East. We left at dinner time, stopping only twice, once to eat, once for gas, arriving in Lincoln at 2 am. It may seem we’re gluttons for punishment, but we’ve learned that it’s best to drive overnight with Ella so that she sleeps the majority of the time.

We had a big Saturday planned. Josh’s parents offered to watch Ella for us so that we could go to the Nebraska vs. Minnesota game. For the going on eight years Josh and I have been together, we’ve gone to a game each year. Up until last year, we went to the Nebraska vs. Colorado game, the day after Thanksgiving, every year whether it was in Lincoln or in Boulder. Unfortunately they don’t play anymore which means we missed our game opportunity last year. We were more than happy to take them up on their offer to babysit.

Josh and had a great time tailgating with some of his high school friends before the game.

The game was great too!

Of course we had to enjoy the ever healthy food options of Runza, Valentino’s and a Fairbury Frank. It being my first Fairbury Frank, Josh insisted on a picture.

I’m not a hot dog person, but that frank we shared was delicious. Must have been the red food coloring.

After that game we picked Ella up and took her to friends’ house where so got to play with their two daughters as well as another cutie that is just a few months younger than Ella. It’s funny that I never think Ella is that small until she’s standing next to a toddler the same age or younger that makes her look like miniature doll. She had a great time and practiced using her new favorite word…mine. Yep, it’s started.

The rest of the weekend we enjoyed the company of Josh’s parents, his sister Amber and her daughter Hanila. We were bummed that she didn’t bring her two other girls, especially Ximena who is Ella’s age. Next time!

We spent all of Monday driving home. I’ve decided that eight hours is my max road trip length. How I managed to have fun driving 16+ hours with girlfriends for spring break to California is beyond me. I could not get out of the car fast enough when I pulled us into our drive way.

Now we get to relax this weekend, only driving about 45 minutes to my dad’s house for Thanksgiving. My family from San Diego arrives today, we’re doing the Turkey Trot tomorrow and then enjoying my favorite meal of the entire year. I cannot wait.

Happy Thanksgiving Everyone!

Are you ready for some football?

Ella sure was. Even though we were both battling colds, we headed to our first football game of the season.  It was an absolutely beautiful day in Ft. Collins!

Before we got sick, I’d invited my little brother and sister up to the CSU football game on Saturday as a late birthday celebration.  I can’t believe that they’re teenagers!  What’s really crazy is that they are closer in age to Ella than to me.  Boy do I feel old.

Ella slept through most of the game snuggled tightly against Josh in the Baby Bjorn, but made an appearance in the 4th quarter.

Can you believe those cheeks of hers?

She did so great at the game and they won!  Next time she’ll be big enough to rock her CSU outfit!  Unfortunately the game we were planning on going to on October 1st conflicts with my first race.  Still trying to figure out what to do since Josh isn’t ready to take her to a long outting like that without me. 

Next up, maybe her first Husker game if we can get tickets to the one up in Wyoming. I can’t believe it’s already football season, the fall is really here.