Tag Archives: running

A Fall-ish Weekend at Home

This last weekend sure felt like fall and Alex and I were thrilled to have spent it at home. There is a definite crispness in the air. I brought back the down comforter for our bed since the evenings are getting really chilly.  Alex and I have both pulled out our puffy vests and I got myself a new cozy scarf for the occasion. The leaves are just starting to turn, so my fingers are crossed that the next few weeks will be filled with glorious autumn color.

{selfie with my new plaid scarf!}

{selfie with my new plaid scarf!}

In keeping with the fall-theme, I have been making some of my favorite fall foods: pumpkin bread, pulled pork, chili and stuffed squash.

20150920_174351958_iOS

{slow-cooker pulled pork is one of my all-time favorites!}

{slow-cooker pulled pork is one of my all-time favorites!}

{we decided to become Seahawks fans this year, so last night we hung out on the couch with full bowls of chili}

{we decided to become Seahawks fans this year, so last night we hung out on the couch with full bowls of chili}

During our relaxing weekend I had two jaunts through the arboretum – one was my first “fun run” since my half marathon last weekend, and the other was a really nice walk with my cousin, Chris, and his family.

{super adorable and unbelievably happy little family!}

{super adorable and unbelievably happy little family!}

{baby Henry is going on 6 months already!}

{baby Henry is going on 6 months already!}

{fun to do a side-by-side comparison of my first 5-mile training run two months ago against Saturday's 5-mile run. During my actual training, my 5-mile run was one of the hardest to complete. Once I pushed past it, it was smooth sailing}

{fun to do a side-by-side comparison of my first 5-mile training run two months ago against Saturday’s 5-mile run. During my actual training, my 5-mile run was one of the hardest to complete. Once I pushed past it, it was smooth sailing}

The last several weeks have been big decision weeks for our house. Alex and I are currently undergoing a major home decor renovation and in about a month from now we will be starting our bathroom remodel. Here are a couple of sneak peeks – more to come in early-October:

{Jackson claimed the new pillows on the sofa}

{Jackson claimed the new pillows on the sofa in the living room}

{Major reveal! New dining room rug and chandelier, as well as all new tabletop stuff: napkins, rings, place mats and candles}

{Major reveal! New dining room rug and chandelier, as well as all new tabletop stuff: napkins, rings, place mats and candles}

{tile decisions... stay tuned to see the finished product in November!}

{tile decisions… stay tuned to see the finished product in November!}

{my homemade spider repellent! here in Seattle we have freaking gigantic spiders and I don't care for them in my house. I think I've seen almost 10 in the last 2 weeks, so I'm done with that. here's hoping this repellent will keep the creepy crawlies creepy crawling outside!}

{my homemade spider repellent! here in Seattle we have freaking gigantic spiders and I don’t care for them in my house. I think I’ve seen almost 10 in the last 2 weeks, so I’m done with that. here’s hoping this repellent will keep the creepy crawlies creepy crawling outside!}

Life has finally settled down for us, and all is well. It was really nice to catch up on small projects around our house over the weekend and we’re looking forward to a relaxing, low-key fall and winter.

Half Marathon: Complete!

After months of preparation I can finally say I completed my first half marathon! The big “race” was yesterday and it went really well. My goal was to finish the race and that’s exactly what I did.

20150913_153458919_iOS

20150913_155635118_iOS

I ran the half marathon with my friend Ryan. He and I ran the first mile together, then he pushed ahead, as his pace was much faster than mine.

The weather was pretty much perfect for running. It was in the mid-50s and overcast for a while, which made it really comfortable for the athletes.

20150913_170447355_iOS

The run was out in the country, really in the middle of nowhere. It was on side streets and partially on a highway, then the finish was through the woods around a lake. There was a lot of variety, to say the least. It was a very small event with only around 50 people competing, so that meant it was pretty lonely out on the course. Thankfully I had my own personal cheering section, as Alex, Mary and my mom were there hootin’ and hollerin’ and cheering for all of the runners.

20150913_181154938_iOS

My training really, really paid off, as did Ryan’s expert physical therapy help. The most challenging part of my training, though, was starting to increase my distance. I spent the better part of the spring and early summer running a few 2-3 mile runs each week, then once I started building on that and pushing to a 4, 5 or 6 mile run each week I faced the biggest challenges {every week I did one training run and increased it by a mile from the previous week}. It was during these initial long runs that I realized how tight my IT band and hip flexors were, so thankfully Ryan gave me some stretches that worked wonders on my legs.

After my legs loosened up I got through my 7 mile training run and then the rest of the training really became pretty smooth, with the hardest part simply being the time it took to run each week. During my half marathon, I ran the whole event, except for a quick stretch stop around mile 8. My recovery was quick and uneventful, and I’m feeling great today!

20150913_182035758_iOS

We finished!

20150913_192805167_iOS

My time was 2 hours and 16 minutes, which makes my pace right around 10-10.5 minutes. This was certainly faster than my training time. I came in at 25th place, and 4th in my age, and Ryan finished in 17th place, and 2nd for his age.

I’m really glad I pushed myself to complete a half marathon. It was great to have something to work towards and accomplish!

Summer is Here!

Summer has arrived in Seattle! The transition from our beautiful, amazing spring to summer took place over the last week or so and it seems like the new season is here to stay. The highs all weekend were in the mid-80s, which is considered very warm {and a little unusual} for Seattle. I have a feeling we are in store for a long, hot summer here! I’m certainly ok with that but need to be better about planning no-cook dinners and preparing lighter evening meals, as we don’t have air conditioning {what happened to our mild, wet climate!?}. Oh, and I need to stock up on ice cream ingredients!

Alex and I had a nice week followed by a restful, but productive, weekend.

{I kicked off the weekend on Friday afternoon with a run around Green Lake with my friend Ali, followed by a pit stop at Mary's house to pick up this gorgeous bouquet of the last of her peonies}

{I kicked off the weekend on Friday afternoon with a run around Green Lake with my friend Ali, followed by a pit stop at Mary’s house to pick up this gorgeous bouquet of the last of her peonies}

{thank goodness I changed out our bedding last week and exchanged it with our lighter summer quilt - the timing couldn't have been better! we have been roasting this week.}

{thank goodness I changed out our bedding last week and exchanged it with our lighter summer quilt – the timing couldn’t have been better! we have been roasting this week.}

{this is Jackson's "come on, let me sleep, mom" look}

{this is Jackson’s “come on, let me sleep, mom” look}

{and this is him not caring that he's not allowed on the bed...}

{and this is him not caring that he’s not allowed on the bed…}

{Henry cat loves the change in bedding, but mostly, he loves the addition of the fan in our room!}

{Henry cat loves the change in bedding, but mostly, he loves the addition of the fan in our room!}

{summer is DEFINITELY here - it ended up being 84 on Saturday and 88 on Sunday and it's 84 right now on Monday}

{summer is DEFINITELY here – it ended up being 84 on Saturday and 88 on Sunday and it’s 84 right now on Monday}

{our Saturday afternoon plans of going paddle boarding were shut down by the wind, so we went with Ryan and Mary to Westward, an absolutely adorable water-side restaurant on Lake Union for a drink}

{our Saturday afternoon plans of going paddle boarding were shut down by the wind, so we went with Ryan and Mary to Westward, an absolutely adorable water-side restaurant on Lake Union for a drink}

{we enjoyed an evening out at a fundraiser on Friday night, followed by an unexpected stop at a restaurant for dinner, then Saturday we spent the evening grilling out at Mary and Ryan's}

{we enjoyed an evening out at a fundraiser on Friday night, followed by an unexpected stop at a restaurant for dinner, then Saturday we spent the evening grilling out at Mary and Ryan’s}

{We had a very active weekend. Our pilates instructor, Diane, came over for our pilates lesson on Saturday morning. I am loving my FitBit - I walked more than 24,000 steps (!) on Sunday, which included a nice run along Lake Washington. Alex went for an awesome 20 or 30 mile bike ride on his new bike.}

{We had a very active weekend. Our pilates instructor, Diane, came over for our pilates lesson on Saturday morning. I am loving my FitBit – I walked more than 24,000 steps (!) on Sunday, which included a nice run along Lake Washington. Alex went for an awesome 20 or 30 mile bike ride on his new bike.}

{as a "thank you for putting up with us" gift, my dad got Alex and me three glassybabies. a glassy baby is a glass votive holder that is hand blown in our neighborhood. they are really iconic in Seattle, but particularly around my neighborhood. it was fun to pick out three colors and now proudly display them, along with the original one I already had. thanks dad!}

{as a “thank you for putting up with us” gift, my dad got Alex and me three glassybabies. a glassybaby is a glass votive holder that is hand blown in our neighborhood. they are really iconic in Seattle, but particularly around my neighborhood. they make great gifts! it was fun to pick out three colors and now proudly display them, along with the original one I already had. thanks dad!}

{the big project for sunday was staining the back patio table and the fence. it's our first time staining the table and it looks brand new! alex sanded it down and applied some stain and voila!}

{the big project for sunday was staining the back patio table and the fence. it’s our first time staining the table and it looks brand new! alex sanded it down and applied some stain and voila!}

{aside from the lack of grass, I'd still say our backyard looks pretty okay!}

{aside from the lack of grass, I’d still say our backyard looks pretty okay!}

{this crazy pants is loving his kiddie pool!}

{this crazy pants is loving his kiddie pool!}

{trying to stay cool!}

{trying to stay cool!}

{that's all for now!}

{that’s all for now!}

Fitness Training

Since Alex and I are going to be spending most of our summer home in Seattle, or at least in the Pacific Northwest, we are both “in training” for a summer fitness achievement. Staying active and being in shape is really important to both of us. It is definitely a motivator to have something to work towards, but in reality, I think we would both still remain active either way.

Alex Biking

Alex is currently training for a bike ride from Seattle to Vancouver. It’s about 180 miles and he will ride over two days. Alex’s friend Nigel is also training for this same ride, so the two of them frequently ride home from work together or they’ll go out for longer rides on the weekend. The ride is in mid-July and he has been training for this for around 6 weeks or so.

May is Bike to Work month which has been a great excuse for Alex to get into a bike commuting schedule. His office is 19 miles away by bike and it’s a really nice distance to keep him in shape and to break up his longer rides with.

While Alex is training for a bike ride I am currently training for a half marathon. My race isn’t until mid-September, so I’ve got a little while longer than Alex does, but this week I am going to start focusing on my distances a little more than I have over the last few weeks.

Last weekend my running buddy and I had a really nice run down along Lake Washington. The road is closed to cars on Sundays in the spring and summer so it’s filled with bikes and runners. Jackson is a great running partner, though he still has a few things to learn. He will join me on 2-3 short runs each week, but as I ease into runs longer than 4 miles once a week, he’ll have to stay home.

{taking a quick dip in the lake after our run}

{taking a quick dip in the lake after our run}

As a balance to this cardio it is becoming apparent that we really need to do yoga or Pilates. I won a gift certificate to a Pilates studio nearby, which I tested out last week and it felt great to get a good stretch!

IMG_0488

I just signed up for ClassPass, which is basically a limited membership to most of the studios in Seattle – you can go to 3 classes per studio each month, but the total number of classes you can take is unlimited. The point of it is to get you to try out a bunch of new studios. I had seen a bunch of advertising on Facebook, but then a girl I work with spoke so highly of it last week I decided to give it a shot. Below is a screenshot of what it looks like to sign up for a class – you basically take a look at all of the studios in the Seattle area and pick a time and class and location that works best for you. SOLD!

Untitled

Stay tuned for progress on how our training and rides/races go… We both use the app “Strava” to track our rides/runs, so that’s a great place to keep tabs on us and cheer us on 😉

Here’s What’s Happening in our House this Week

It’s a busy week in the Allen household! We’ve got a lot going on during the days and evenings this week. I am in the process of coordinating our dog sitter for Europe and hiring an Italian tutor, as well as booking some lodging for our Europe trip and two summer trips in Eastern Washington. Other than the travel planning this week we’re hoping to go night skiing one day, both of us have some social obligations and I have a work function. Last week we started our Monday, Wednesday and Friday runs and so far they are going really well. I’m keeping up with Pilates and Alex has gotten back to the gym after kicking his flu bug into the past.

Photo from our ski day on Saturday!

Photo from our ski day on Saturday!

We had an awesome weekend! We started the weekend off with a ski day on Saturday. Jackson got to rage in the snow for about an hour before he went to take a nap in the car while Alex and I made a few runs.

WP_20140201_019

Jackson sure loves to run around in the snow! It’s so fun to watch him just bolt back and forth with the biggest smile we’ve ever seen plastered across his face.

WP_20140201_011

It was a gorgeous day on the mountain! We explored new territory, got to see Mount Rainier and enjoyed each other’s company.

WP_20140201_023

On Sunday we had plans to go to the Millers to watch the Super Bowl so we got some errands out of the way in the morning. We had a great time cheering on our home team on Sunday with the Millers and the Buffingtons. It has been a lot of fun to see how spirited Seattle is with a winning team.

WP_20140201_027

This gigantic furry ball of energy has a big, big change coming up. He has no idea. After discussing his frequent bursts of energy that are so wild they make him vomit, our veterinarian advised us that it’s time to get Jackson neutered. We had held off on neutering him because we keep hearing that new research is showing that by waiting until a large breed male is fully-grown it can reduce the risk of some cancers. Our breeder recommended neutering him at 18 months and we were going to compromise on a year, but it looks like it’ll be just a few days shy of 11 months for Jackson.

Vet visit!

Vet visit!

Since last week’s vet visit we have been really working with him on calming down and encouraging calm behavior. We’ve brought out his special mat which seems to really help him mellow out. We have also been confining him to the bathroom again for the last week or so. He just has too much destructive energy and testosterone raging through his body right now to really know what to do with himself! We know he’s a good dog, but we’re both excited for him to be able to take it easy once he gets neutered.

WP_20140202_001

This Week’s Happenings

Not a whole lot is going on right now – well, not enough to warrant its own blog post, anyway. In any case, I’ve compiled what’s been happening lately over in our neck of the woods.

Saturdays at the dog park

Saturdays at the dog park

Today Jackson turned 10 months! He weighs about 70 pounds. He definitely has some growing to do still – I noticed today that his head needs to catch up with the rest of his body. As a 10 month old his favorite things include: digging in the backyard, going for walks… lots of walks, playing with other dogs, terrorizing Henry, chasing Henry around the house, and generally doing what we don’t want him to do. In all fairness, Jackson really is a good dog. He’s adorably sweet and he has certainly found his place in our house – usually on top of our feet wherever we’re standing.

Jackson has grown to love playing fetch.

Jackson has grown to love playing fetch.

We began Monday, Wednesday, Friday runs with Jackson this week. Lately we have been realizing that we just can’t tire our little big pup out enough. We are hoping that running will do the trick. Monday marked our first official “family run” and we ran about 3 miles. We had run with Jackson in the past but it was more of a run-walk, whereas this was a solid 3-mile run. Much to our surprise, Jackson did awesome! This makes me so excited for summer.

Alex's new running shoes :)

Alex’s new running shoes :)

Our big trip to Europe is quickly approaching and we are FAR from ready to go! We booked our hotels in Spain and Switzerland last week but still need to get England and Amsterdam locked down, as well as our flight back to the US. Another thing that is on our to do list is figure out what we’re doing with Jackson. I am in the process of “interviewing” dog sitters for Jackson. I am certain we’ll find a good family who will be able to watch him while we’re gone, but it isn’t easy to find a home for him to stay at for nearly 30 days. Henry has a fabulous cat sitter already, so he’s taken care of.

This is what Jackson looks like after a 3-mile run.

This is what Jackson looks like after a 3-mile run.

As a preparation for part of our Europe trip Alex and I decided we’d like to learn to speak a bit of Italian. We will be in parts of Italy where tourists aren’t common and we’ll be attending an Italian wedding so we thought it would be nice to have a few words in our back pocket. We have been using a website called Duo Lingo for a few months and have started to build a small vocabulary but we’re realizing that we really need to step it up in order to be able to have very basic conversations and communicate a little bit in Italian in just a few short months. We are planning on hiring an Italian tutor with the hopes that she will be able to bring us up to speed. I think we’ll start with one session a week and then when we get closer we might increase to two. We’ll see!

WP_20140127_017

Alex got new glasses!

Alex got new glasses!

Our weekend was pretty low-key. Alex and I got the rare opportunity of having a lunch date on Friday! It was awesome – I met him at his office and we walked up the street to Homegrown, an AMAZING sandwich shop, to grab a bite to eat.

Lunch date at Homegrown in South Lake Union
Lunch date at Homegrown in South Lake Union

Friday night Alex went out with some friends and I stayed in with a spasming abdomen. Saturday we met Ali, Tyler and baby Vivian {and Glory, their dog} at the dog park and had brunch with them afterwards. We did some errands and came home to get a few things done around the house before going out for dinner at Naam Thai and a glass of wine at Bottlehouse. We had originally planned on skiing on Sunday but Alex just wasn’t feeling well enough so we stayed home.

We just adore this girl! How is she 13 months already!?

We just adore this girl! How is she 13 months old already!?

The weather was really nice on Sunday so we took Jackson for a long walk through the Washington Park Arboretum. We spent the rest of the day relaxing and getting stuff done around the house.

Hanging out at the arboretum on Sunday.

Hanging out at the arboretum on Sunday.

We’ve got some good stuff on the menu this week. The lasagna we had for dinner on Sunday was so so good and I can’t wait for pork carnitas tonight. They have been cooking in my crock pot all day and I can’t even pick up the pork without it falling apart. The rest of the week has mushroom ravioli, gnocchi with sausage and peppers and mushroom risotto… lots of mushrooms and pasta this week!

New Year… New Exercise Goals!

It just so happens that Alex and I both got new jobs that have opened the doors to new exercise goals and routines around the start of the new year. It looks like our new fitness track will coincide with everyone else’s new years resolutions! Neither one of us has any specific goals with our fitness plan other than leading a healthy life that includes regular, consistent exercise and a well-balanced diet.

Both Alex and I were probably in the best shape we have ever been in over the summer, with him training for his 200-mile bike ride and me running all the time. Unfortunately, our busy schedules and lack of follow-through resulted in us “falling off the bandwagon” a bit this fall and winter. We have gotten a slow start to ski season, so we don’t even have that as a regular form of exercise either. It’s great that we both have come up with independent plans that should work for both of us to get back into a regular routine.

Alex's "Race Day"

Alex’s “Race Day”

Alex joined a gym near his new office and has been loving his new exercise routine. One of the benefits his company provides is a reimbursement for exercise equipment, so he stocked up on some new gym clothes and got a yoga mat to kick start his new habit. Alex has been going to the gym 2-3 mornings per week to start his day by lifting weights and doing cardio. He is also planning on starting yoga next week!

For at least a year, if not three years, Alex has been talking about wanting to do yoga or be better at stretching regularly. It is incredible that he is finally making that happen! I can’t wait to see how well he likes it.

One of the new running outfits I got over the summer.

One of the new running outfits I got over the summer.

Once the sun decides to rise before 8:00 a.m. I plan on getting back into running a few days per week. I am so excited to have Jackson as my running buddy now that he’s basically fully grown. It’s perfect timing, too, because he is starting to get to the point where our 3-mile morning walks don’t tire him out anymore!

I just started Pilates instruction this week and I plan on taking my Pilates class from Mary once a week. I might even mix in some mat workouts at home if I’m feeling particularly motivated. I am also planning on adding a couple days of weights at home to my fitness routine. 

It’s been nice to ease into our new fitness routines slowly so that we don’t get over amped and drop them right away. I think that we are both really motivated right now and are using our change in jobs to jump start a new healthy lifestyle in the new year!

STP, Jackson’s Knee Injury and a recap of the week

It’s official – Alex is done with his big 200 mile bike ride to Portland! He finished STP (Seattle to Portland) on Sunday afternoon after 11 hours and some minutes of biking time. He left our house early Saturday morning and rode with his friend Nigel down to Castle Rock, Washington, where they camped overnight before embarking on the second day. Now that he has recovered and is still on his “bikers high” he is plotting to do “RSVP” which is Ride from Seattle to Vancouver and Party – it’s a 180 mile ride in mid-August. We’ll see what he decides…

Alex finished the 202 mile bike ride from Seattle to Portland!

Alex finished the 202 mile bike ride from Seattle to Portland!

We are hoping to get some of the official race photos of Alex – I have seen a few and there are some great shots. Stay tuned…

Ready to leave the house at 5:30 a.m. to start the ride...

Ready to leave the house at 5:30 a.m. to start the ride…

Finished day one!

Finished day one!

While Alex was riding his bike to Portland I was taking care of our injured puppy. Jackson ended up hurting his knee somehow and began limping quite noticeably on Friday afternoon. Alex and I agreed that if he woke up on Saturday and wasn’t walking normally that I would take him into our regular vet’s office. As it turned out, Jackson woke up still limping and was acting extremely lethargic.

Taking it easy sprawled out on the kitchen floor.

Taking it easy sprawled out on the kitchen floor.

I was able to get Jackson an appointment at our vet at 10 and the vet was able to quickly determine the problem. Poor little guy had torn/pulled a muscle in his knee. The vet confirmed there were no broken bones by doing an x-ray, then prescribed Jackson some anti-inflammatory meds and requested that I ice his knee. Once we got home and Jackson took his meds I had him continue to rest while I went for a run, then came back to find that my puppy had returned to his normal happy, energetic self.

Jungle dog!

Jungle dog!

Sunday morning I woke up and hung out with Jackson before meeting my high school friend and Seattle neighbor, Sasha, for brunch before heading down to Portland. As always, it was great to catch up and re-connect with Sasha.

Hanging out at a park in Portland with little Jack man.

Hanging out at a park in Portland with little Jack man.

Jackson came with me down to Portland – we reserved a room in a dog-friendly hotel and he was a hotel champ! The hotel was very accommodating and even had a sign at the front desk welcoming Jackson, and they gave us a little packet that included treats, extra bags and listed a local dog park.

Cuddle time :)

Cuddle time :)

Portland is very dog friendly, so luckily it wasn’t an issue that we were asked to not leave Jackson in our hotel room unattended. There were a few restaurants close to our hotel that offered patio seating for dogs. We were so impressed with how well behaved Jackson was – it ended up being much easier than we had expected.

Jackson is getting comfortable swimming.

Jackson is getting comfortable swimming.

In other news, Jackson is 16 weeks old and he is a puppy preschool graduate! Last week he passed his graduation test at puppy class and will advance to puppy kindergarten, which starts next week.

Puppy preschool graduate.

Puppy preschool graduate.

Jackson learned a fun new trick last week. He knows “high five” and every time we tell him “high five” we still get a kick out of it. It sure is fun doing training with him.

High five!

High five!

I got a bunch of new running gear last week and have been testing it out ever since. I went to a store called Road Runner to get fitted for the best pair of running shoes for me and my feet. They recorded me running on a treadmill and measured my instep, as well as fit me for a custom insole, then had me try on a few pairs of shoes to see which one I liked the best. It was an amazing experience, other than the pretentious salesperson, and I am so happy with my new running shoes and all of my gear. I had a fantastic run today with Ali – we ran/walked 7 miles and I am hopeful that I can keep it up.

New running get up!

New running get up!

 

 

Weekend Fun in the Sun!

It was another weekend that flew by and ended up being busier than I expected it to be. The weather on Saturday couldn’t have been more perfect if I wanted it to be. There wasn’t a cloud in the sky for much of the day and it was a glorious 77 degrees and perfectly sunny.

Gorgeous day for a run on the lake!

Gorgeous day for a run on the lake!

While Alex was on a 60 mile bike ride I went for a 5.3 mile run down by Lake Washington. By the end of the weekend I got convinced by my friend Mary to join her and do a half marathon at the end of the summer! We are tentatively planning on running our 13.1 miles on August 24th.

Alex and his pup

Alex and his pup

Alex got back from his bike ride early afternoon and I had mentioned that Jackson seemed to be very hot that day, so Alex went and bought Jackson his very own pool. Jack dipped his feet and his belly in the pool but still needs to get used to the idea of swimming. I think Jackson is going to need a bigger pool soon!

Alex filling up the pool for Henry and Jackson.

Alex filling up the pool for Henry and Jackson.

Jackson preferred sun bathing.

Jackson preferred sun bathing.

Once Jackson petered out, Alex and I walked up to our favorite spot, Bottlehouse, to help them celebrate their 3rd birthday. We sat on the patio and back in their garden spot and soaked up a LOT of sun and drank our fair share of vino as we enjoyed the afternoon together.

We love Bottlehouse!

We love Bottlehouse!

Loving the sunny patio.

Loving the sunny patio.

Alex BH

The sunset on Saturday night was stunning! We are so lucky to have a beautiful view of Madison Valley and our amazing Pacific Northwest sunsets out our back windows.

Amazing sunset from our backyard.

Amazing sunset from our backyard.

Apparently all of our activities on Saturday tuckered our little furball out, because come Sunday, he slept in until 6:30 and then went back to sleep until 10:00! That allowed us to Skype with Alex’s parents and Alina and Alberto, not to mention enjoy some time to ourselves and have a nice breakfast.

Jackson got a new toy from John!

Jackson got a new toy from John!

We did eventually wake Jackson up to take him on his first big adventure. We drove down to Seward Park to do some urban hiking. I love Seward Park and it is so fantastic that it’s so close to our house {4.9 miles to be exact}. We did a very short hike in the middle of the park to expose Jackson to the idea of the wilderness.

Jackson in the woods!

Jackson in the woods!

He did great!

He did great!

Jackson did so well on our little hike. We had him on his 30 foot leash so that he could sort of wander around and explore his surroundings. It was surprising to Alex and me that he stayed so close to us even though he could be 30 feet away.

Running around in an open field.

Running around in an open field.

We closed out our weekend by spending some time with Ryan and Mary, I baked a pig cake for work, and we picked up our first CSA box. Overall, it was an awesome weekend and I can’t wait to eat some of these yummy veggies for dinner tonight.

Our first CSA box arrived.

Our first CSA box arrived.

This Week in the Allen Household

It has been an unexpectedly busy week at the Allen household. My mom came for a spontaneous three day visit in the middle of the week, Alex has been riding his bike like a madman, Jackson started puppy class, I have been busy doing things around the house and planning trips and parties {rough life} and dealing with our little maniac.

Jack man's new favorite sleeping spot: the shower!

Jack man’s new favorite sleeping spot: the shower!

Jackson is doing great – he is now 11 weeks old and weighs over 18 pounds. He had his second round of shots on Wednesday, so mid-week next week he’ll be able to go to parks and engage with other dogs. Biting anything and everything continues to be Jackson’s favorite pastime – his new favorite thing to chew is our seagrass chair in the living room or the tile in the shower.

Riding in the back of the car like a good puppy!

Riding in the back of the car like a good puppy!

 

We are doing a puppy play group on Monday evenings so that Jackson can spend time with other puppies and work on his socialization. We started this last week and found out that our little man is extremely shy and timid around other groups of dogs. We will be introducing him to as many socialization opportunities as we can over the next few weeks so that he’ll be more comfortable in those settings. Next week we have four days of socialization activities planned for Jackson. I sure hope there are other people out there who care about their puppies as much as we care about ours, otherwise I might start feeling like a crazy person for all the time and energy we devote to our little guy.

The little stinker just didn't want to stay in the back of the car and climbed over the seats...

The little stinker just didn’t want to stay in the back of the car and climbed over the seats…

Jackson has recently been granted the privilege of an expanded boundary. He is now allowed to roam around the entire upstairs. I think he has been really enjoying his new territory. He loves to sleep in the shower or on the tile floor in the bathroom and now he’s got more room to chase the cats around.

Jack and Alex hanging out in the media room together.

Jack and Alex hanging out in the media room together.

A proud puppy parent note: we are on day 19 of no accidents! I think we can stop counting that now and can safely say that our little guy is house broken.

Little Jackson is on his way to being "Big Jackson"

Little Jackson is on his way to being “Big Jackson”

My mom’s visit was very short – she arrived on Tuesday morning and left on Thursday afternoon. Since I couldn’t leave Jackson alone for more than three hours at a time we hung out close to home. My mom enjoys gardening so I thought she would be interested in helping me do some planting in our backyard. I had been meaning to get to it for a while and it was a perfect opportunity to have a helper. Stay tuned for more photos of the work we did.

Our project in progress!

Our project in progress!

I think she really enjoyed meeting Jackson! It was fun for the little guy to have a new friend to play with. And I sure enjoyed the company mid-week. It’s always nice to have visitors, and I’m glad my mom could meet Jackson.

New friend!

New friend!

We had a fun night out on Wednesday – we had dinner at Restaurant Bea and then walked across the street and had a bottle of wine at Bottlehouse. It’s so nice to have such awesome spots that are so close to us.

This was AFTER a bottle of wine plus wine at dinner...

This was AFTER a bottle of wine plus wine at dinner…

Alex has been riding his bike at least 65 miles one weekend day for the last few weeks. Last weekend he rode in the Flying Wheels race which took him on a 65 mile loop through the Cascade foothills. He said it was the most beautiful bike ride he has ever taken and plans to do this ride again next year.

Flying Wheels bike ride

Flying Wheels bike ride

In other athletic news I have been really keeping up with running and increasing my distance. My friend Sara and I ran around Lake Union yesterday, which is a 6 mile run. There are some stoplights that we had to wait for, but with those included we were at a 10:30 pace per mile. The Lake Union loop was nice and flat, which I prefer, but my run on Monday was extremely hilly, so I didn’t run as far. I have been loving my time running each week and it has been really fun to watch my progress on my Runtastic app.

Check out how far I've been running!

Check out how far I’ve been running!