Friday, July 30, 2010


All week I've been looking forward to the Thursday night group ride that leaves from the bike store and goes downtown and back (about 14 miles). It's hard to find bike riding opportunities when you're a beginner like I am. Running is easy because just running through a neighborhood or two will give you a solid workout. Riding a road bike through a neighborhood or two will leave you thinking "Really? That was it? I'm not even out of breath!" So a group ride is great because there's a pack of cyclists which, if you ever driven a car, scares the crap out of motorists and can be a lot safer.

About 50 people (guessing!) showed up for the ride last night. I saw two people fall over before we even left the parking lot, so I was feeling more confident. (It actually isn't that hard to fall off a bike you're attached to...) We began the ride going through some neighborhoods and as the sun was beginning to set, we reached downtown San Antonio. Mike and I sort of tagged along with whomever was closest at the time since everyone sort of takes their own way back. It was pretty cool seeing cyclists sort of swarming around the area with their little blinking lights. The sights and sounds reminded me of the few vacations I've taken down here. Made me think of my high school girls and my dad. It's easy to forget you live in a touristy town when you've got your head down doing day-to-day things! After taking a trip around the Tower of the Americas and the Alamo (which I totally missed since I was focusing on not becoming road kill), it was time to head back to the shop.

It was pretty much dark by the time we reached Broadway (the street on which the shop is located). Mike and I just kept going past the shop since we had biked the 2-mile trip from our house to the store. We reached a stop light and everything went very smoothly until all of a sudden I was laying on the pavement. In the dark. In the middle of Broadway. I had a freak-out and got myself upright with a few choice words coming out along the way. I'm still not sure if I was scared or just mad that I was so close to making it the whole ride without falling. My chain had fallen off in the process so we pulled over and Mike sweetly put my chain back on and explained what he was doing so I'd know for next time. We took neighborhood streets home and I was no worse for the wear when we reached our driveway. A shower, milk and a cookie and a band-aid for my skinned knee were all it took for me to feel good as new again!

We're planning on doing a 40- or 65-mile ride in a couple weeks northwest of San Antonio. The weekend after that I'm doing the Sweet and Twisted sprint triathlon (500-meter swim, 15-mile bike, 3.1 mile run). I hope to get some swimming in over the next few weeks.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Famous Last Words

So I've been bugging Mike about installing our kitchen backsplash so we can finally put all the finishing touches on the kitchen and be done with it. He's done so much work on it already from demo to electric to floor tile installation, but I needed the backsplash to be done because I was tired of staring at half painted walls. So we special ordered our decorative tile a couple weeks ago and this past weekend was when we would finally get it done. We started Saturday morning by applying "Red Guard" which keeps the tile from cracking over the years and makes it more water proof. Oh, and it smells something awful. We needed to wait for that to dry, so we decided to grab lunch and stop by the running store as we both needed new shoes. Mike thought it'd take about 3 hours to put the tile up (see title of the post).

Now, usually when I buy running shoes it goes something like this: Me: "I need Asics Gel Cumulus in a size 8.5" Salesperson: "One second" (they go back and grab a pair) Me: "What color are this year's model" (they open box) Me, with audible disappointment: "You don't have another color" Salesperson: "nope, this is the only color we carry" Me: "Ok, here's my card" But this time, I did some research on shoes that are easy on bunions (ha, I'm such an old lady). At the store I tried on every neutral shoe they had that might be good for bunions. Still stuck on aesthetics, I didn't like any of them. And they didn't have my trusty Asics Gel Cumulus. :( Mike didn't find any he liked either so we decided to hit up another location of the same store that has a bigger inventory. It was there that I tried on the Pearl izumi Streaks. They were light, awesome looking and they felt good despite having less cushion. There was even a little smudge on them so they took 25% off. In addition to that, Mike and I joined Team Soler (running store's "team") and we can accumulate points toward gift certificates by wearing their jersey to races and we always get 20% off our entire purchase. We do have to volunteer for packet pick-up 4 hours a year though. In a way, you could say Soler Sports sponsors us...sort of. Anyway, here's a pic of my new kicks. I've run in them once and I'm very skeptical, but I'll be giving them another go tomorrow morning and hope to get them broken in nicely.

So after 4 hours of sole-searching, it was time to start putting up tile. After 2 hours, we had completed half a wall. HALF A WALL. We had 2 more to go and one of those was going to be ridiculously tough. It was dinner time and I was getting testy so it was time for some food. I wanted to try this place a friend had told me about called The Big Easy Cafe which was started by some folks who'd been displaced by Hurricane Katrina. Mike put on his "Geaux Tigers" shirt and off we went. I didn't know exactly where it was so I turned to the trusty iPhone. In Google Maps search I entered "The Big Easy". A list with one selection appears: "New Orleans, LA" Thanks iPhone. Thanks for being smart enough to not actually be helpful. Fortunately adding "San Antonio" to my search got us to the right place. So Mike ordered a shrimp Po' Boy and I got the fish and shrimp plate (which included mac n' cheese!). When Mike took his first bite I asked him if it was like home. He said it was BETTER! Hahaha! I enjoyed my food as well (my stomach was thinking otherwise later...) and of course everyone there enjoyed his shirt. It was a fun experience and we'll definitely be back!

When we got home it was almost 8pm. We went back to work on the tile and got to another stopping point around midnight. Ugh. This was taking WAY more than 3 hours!! We went to bed with plans to hit it hard again the next morning. Sunday morning came and again we started putting up tile: apply thin set, place tile, place spacers, cut special tile, repeat... At 12:30 we took yet another break to meet up with my friend Mark and his wife Heather who were on their way back to OK from South Padre Island. It was a welcome reprieve as, once again, Veronica was getting testy from low blood sugar. We went to Genghis Grill which is always fun (and filling!). We had a great chat with them and then wished them well on their journey back north. And then there we were again. Tiling. Four hours later we were done putting tile up. Still no grout and we even decided not to tile some areas that we had originally planned on including. We had to finish and we had to put off grouting until next weekend. It was time to be done. It looks pretty cool so far which makes the hard work worth it. Here's what we've got so far. We'll use white grout so it will look much different when we're finally done.

We showered up and then ate only cereal for dinner (we had rich food all weekend, it was time for detox!). We relaxed with our Netflix movie at the time: Julie and Julia. We both enjoyed it quite a bit and it was a nice, light movie after a stressful weekend. Mind you, we broke the stressful part up with a lot of fun stuff! Hopefully next week I'll be back with a great pic of our finished product!!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Oklahoma Vacation

Mike's boss from Tinker AFB retired from the Air Force last Friday and we went up to wish him well. We drove up Thursday night for a Harley-Davidson/Fishing themed dinner before the retirement ceremony on Friday afternoon. On the way up we stopped at the first Harley-Davidson store of six between SA and OKC and got some shirts so we wouldn't stick out at the dinner. I got a pink tank top and Mike got a black T-shirt with two busty women and a giant Texas flag, of course.

We were able to catch up with the Pierdominicos (who are moving to Germany next week), the Diehls (who are moving to St. Louis soon) and the Hobbses (who live in DC and are expecting Miss Addie Leigh in October). We were all good friends when we were in Oklahoma and it was fun to spend one last weekend all together. They all laughed at Mike's jokes. I didn't only because they are the same jokes I hear all the time at home. I'm glad he had a fresh audience. :)

While in OK, we stayed at the Colcord Hotel downtown. It was VERY NICE! :) We've walked past it a million times and always wondered what it would be like to stay there. We took the opportunity to be tourists in OKC. Lunch on Friday was at Louie's on the Lake. One of our favorite restaurants. The weather was muggy but we sat outside anyway. We had dinner with our friends at Coaches at the ballpark, then found some "FroYo" (frozen yogurt) and ended the evening on the bar boat on the canal. We also took a regular canal boat and we learned a lot of interesting facts about downtown OKC. When I-40 gets moved south, Bricktown is going to be a really fun place to hang out (as if it wasn't already)!

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

So I guess I'll start a blog...

Wow, it's been over a year since my last post. Apparently I wasn't that great at blogging, even with the perfect opportunity - i.e. VORTEX2. It looks as though life has given me more blogging fodder so let's see if I can keep this up.

So here's the "5 Minute University" of the last year...

August 2009: We found out we were moving to San Antonio, Texas. It's like a whole other country.

(This is why I love Google images...)

We bought a house in October:

And I remained in Oklahoma for a cold and snowy winter!

By May I'd had enough of the snow and tornadoes, so my dad and I loaded all my stuff in a moving truck and we make the trek down I-35...

Then the wedding festivities began!
There was the bachelorette party...

The Welcome Dinner....

And of course, the wedding (The Social Event of 2010) itself!!

We had a great time on our Honeymoon in Kauai, HI...

And now it's time to look for a job...

So now I know why I didn't keep up my blog...this blog editing tool is not very user friendly, especially for picture whores like me! Maybe I can figure out an easier way.... suggestions?