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Ragnar Relay = Complete!

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Just popping in with a fun “life” update today. If you are only interested in strictly financial posts, just skip this one and check back tomorrow – I’m finally posting my budget!

I’ve mentioned a couple times about how I’ve been training for a big running relay race called Ragnar.  Well, the race is complete! It started Friday and ended Saturday. Today, I’m at home and in full recovery-mode (meaning, as little movement as possible and fully stocked with ibuprofen) 😉

Here’s a picture I posted on my Facebook:

23 hours, 15.4 miles of mountain running, 2.7 hours of sleep, 8 crazy teammates. So much fun!

Each member of our team had 3 different legs ranging in length from 4.1 – 6.6 miles of trail-running/mountainous terrain. I ran my first leg on Friday evening, my second leg on Saturday about 3am, and my last leg on Saturday at 10am. This photo was taken as I was taking off for my last leg of the relay. My shirt, appropriately, says “Everything Hurts and I’m Dying.” A little tongue-and-cheek, but definitely fitting for how I felt at that moment. I wore my Fitbit the entire time and for Saturday, my stats indicated that I’d gone 37,726 steps (= 17.91 miles), and climbed the equivalent of 114 flights of stairs (from the mountains we were running)! To say I’m pooped today is an understatement!

BUT – tired as I may be, I had an absolute blast! It was THE BEST time ever! And, as I’ve got 3 half-marathons under my belt (but nothing longer), this is a PDR (personal distance record). YIKES!

All my teammates immediately said they wanted to sign up again for next year. I’m still on the fence. I loved it, but I typically only sign up for a big race once every couple years. Committing to do it again next year feels like a lot to me. There’s a lot of time and effort dedicated to training, but it also costs money to go (the race was $120/person + we all pitched in another $25 for team shirts + a day off work, food and snacks for while we were there, etc.). We’ve got a few months to think it over so we’ll see.

For today, though, I just wanted to share this major accomplishment! I’ve heard of Ragnar races before, but never really considered doing one myself. If it weren’t for my teammates (friends/colleagues from my department) I probably never would have pushed myself to try to complete a Ragnar race. But the feeling of pride and accomplishment is huge! Just the little psychological boost I needed going into a new month! If I can accomplish something this big physically (15+ miles of running on mountainous terrain), surely I can conquer our monthly budget. Right?

I’ll be back tomorrow asking for your advice! I’m already nervous, so bring your patient pants, as I could use your support!

Have a great end to your weekend!

~Ashley


Cheap Halloween Kids’ Craft

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After a rocky start to the school year (and a teacher who was replaced a month into the year), we LOVE our new teacher. But I was a little nervous when she texted the class parents at 4:30pm yesterday to say she needed 5 volunteers for a Halloween party today. The volunteers would also need to bring an activity to do for the whole class, supplies and all. Yikes!

I wanted to volunteer because I was planning to work from home today anyway and one of the perks of my job is its flexibility to do things like this! I wish I’d had a little more notice so I could’ve planned a really cool activity, but I set to the interwebs ASAP to find a kids’ craft that is: 1) age appropriate for 5-year-olds, 2) quick, & 3) cheap! Since I’d be providing the supplies I couldn’t get crazy with anything too elaborate or pricey!

Luckily, I found some cute little q-tip skeletons that fit all 3 criteria.

I was able to raid our craft bin for the glue bottles, scissors, and construction paper. I found a free printable for skeleton heads (see here) and printed enough for the whole class. I already had some q-tips on hand, but not enough for the whole class, so I did a quick Target run and bough the cheap store-brand q-tips for a whopping $2.77 (for a 500-count). Can’t get much cheaper than that!

I had so much fun getting to go volunteer in the class! It’s my first time of the school year and I had an absolute blast getting to hang out with my kiddos and meet many of their friends. The kids had several different craft options to choose from, but our skeletons were a big hit (truth be told: I think the kids just wanted to play with the glue bottles because they’re typically only allowed to use glue sticks. lol)

Here’s my kiddo working on her skeleton! Very focused! Oh yeah, costumes were allowed today too. 🙂

Happy Halloween!


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