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Happy November! (yes, I’m late)

November 3, 2011

So Tuesday was the first day of November! I kind of missed this since I was still in a post-birthday glow, however, it’s time to embrace the new month!

One of my favorite things about November is Thanksgiving. I have no idea why, but it’s actually my favorite holiday. I have a lot of fond memories of Thanksgiving growing up, and I’m loving our new tradition of having Thanksgiving dinner with my mom’s older brother and his family, who we didn’t see very much when I was in middle school and high school.

Also, in Kansas City, I feel like Thanksgiving marks the beginning of the holiday season. The Country Club Plaza is a beautiful outdoor shopping center that covers all the buildings in colorful holiday lights. On Thanksgiving, at about 7pm, they have a huge lighting ceremony, and now with fireworks!


The streets are packed with people who go to watch the lights turn on, and there’s just something magical and exciting about it! We (all my cousins and aunts and uncles)  used to watch it from my grandmother’s and then my aunt Avis’s apartment balconies since they overlooked the Plaza.

Now I’m getting excited about the holidays!! See? This is what Thanksgiving does to me!

It also means I get to go HOME! I love being at home with my family and I haven’t been home since August. I am so excited to spend time with my family!

Since September, I’ve tried to set goals for myself each month. Let’s recap on my October goals, and see how I fared…

1. Try at least one new recipe a week.

Now I’m sure I hit this one! I either tried other people’s recipes, especially baking recipes, or made up my own several times each week! Some of my favorites were Chelsey’s Creamy Spaghetti Squash Primavera, my Savory Oats, and Chelsey’s Quinoa Stuffed Maple Glaze Acorn Squash.

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I think my brother and sister-in-law’s favorite was the pumpkin chocolate chip bread! I’ll assume it was good, since I couldn’t eat it.

2. Go Apple picking!

Also did this! I had a great time going apple picking in Indiana with my cousin, my sister-in-law, and her friend! It was exactly the fall activity that I was looking for, and I got some delicious apples (and a REALLY delicious caramel apple).

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3. Don’t push too hard on training.

Oops. Forgot about this one… aaaaand didn’t follow it. With my 10 mile run in a week and a half, I’ve definitely been pushing harder than usual. I’ve been running a lot, which made me worried that I would loose muscle mass. So then I’ve been trying to keep up plenty of strength training too! But hopefully I can switch gears a bit after the run.

I definitely want to keep up long runs since I really enjoy them, but maybe every other weekend, and some shorter interval runs during the week, rather than the distance speed runs I’ve had to do on my training schedule, like the 8 MILE one I did this week. Yea… brutal.


So now on to November’s Goals!

1. Make school a higher priority!

I’ve been so absorbed in training for the 10 mile run, as well as dealing with my new diet changes, that I have put school on a back-burner until recently. I’m still doing all my reading and going to classes, but I’m not putting in  the studying effort that I need to be really prepared for finals that are coming up after Thanksgiving! And since our entire grade for the year in each class is based on the final… it’s kind of important.

2. Have fun with my races this month!

In November, I have my 10 miler, Chicago’s Perfect 10, and then a 5K Turkey Trot run on Thanksgiving. I’ve been training for the 10 miler for months now, and I’ve put a lot of pressure on myself. I need to remember that I run for FUN. I love running and it makes me happy, I need to focus on that and not just time!

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Also, I think the 5K will be a great opportunity to remember that running is fun. I’ll be doing it with my dad, two of my cousins and my uncle. I’ve decided that I want to run it with my dad, rather than trying to get my best race time. The purpose of the race is to enjoy my family!

3. Be better about keeping up relationships with friends.

I’m not the best about calling people to check in. Sometimes I get home and I’m just exhausted and want to relax, not get on the phone. I also seem to have this weird idea that I don’t have time to call people… when really I’m just on the internet and watching Netflix.

My goal is to call a bunch of my old friends at least once this month, and to keep up with some closer friends even more! I always feel great when I get off the phone with them, I forget how much I miss them until I hear their voices!

Now I just need to keep these goals in mind throughout the month! That’s the hard part…


On Monday and Wednesday I have to pack both lunch and dinner, and on Wednesdays I sometimes treat myself to buying one of those two meals at a carry out place near school. Today, I decided to try out a new place called I Dream of Falafel. They are a healthy Mediterranean restaurant, that’s almost like a Mediterranean Chipotle! It has a similar concept: you chose a platter or a wrap and customize it. They boast their freshly prepared food and vegan, gluten-free, low-fat, low carb, high protein menu options. Also, their meats are AA sirloin and cage free, grain0fed chicken which are never frozen and additive free!

After reading all of this about them and hearing great reviews from classmates, I knew it was the right place for me!

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I was actually very impressed with their service. When I walked up to order, I told the employee that I had soy and gluten allergies. He quickly called over the chef who kindly told me that he uses no soy in any of their cooking, and then pointed out the few items on the menu which had gluten, so I could avoid them.

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I ended up ordering the salad platter with chicken. I also got it with the Raita sauce, which is a cucumber yogurt sauce. It was delicious! I was very surprised at the salad, it looked pretty standard, but when I ate it there were so herbs that really gave the salad a great flavor! I will definitely be going back!

What are some of your personal goals? What do you think of mine?

Have you discovered any new great fast casual restaurants?

10 Comments leave one →
  1. November 3, 2011 8:00 am

    I LOVE Thanksgiving too! I appreciate it more and more as I get older because I appreciate just being with my family. My husband and I are going to visit our families over Thanksgiving in Arizona, and I couldn’t be more excited!

    I love your new goals! I’m sure you’ll do awesome in your races! I just wrote about my November goals yesterday. 🙂

    • November 3, 2011 9:23 am

      I saw your goals! Haha I love that a bunch of us bloggers do them because I like to see everyone’s goals!

  2. November 3, 2011 12:12 pm

    Thanksgiving is my favorite holiday too! I can’t wait to go home have time to relax with my family:) I am the same with you I definitely have to start making school my first priority! And I run a 5k turkey trot thanksgiving morning with my mom! so fun!;)

    • November 3, 2011 12:35 pm

      I feel like once November hits, I start thinking about finals eventually coming up! That definitely prompts my desire to take school seriously! And I’m glad your Turkey Trot is fun, I hope ours is too!

  3. November 3, 2011 1:26 pm

    Twin posts! haha. We are both late to that November month 🙂

    Yes! Get on your studying and outlining! Finals always snuck up on me 🙂

  4. November 3, 2011 3:58 pm

    Our outdoor mall back home sets up a huggeee Christmas tree and has a big lighting ceremony for it on Thanksgiving, too. It’s so much fun! They have bands, snow machines,’s wonderful. 🙂

  5. November 3, 2011 8:39 pm

    The Thanksgiving Christmas lighting in Kansas City sounds amazing! Like you, I get giddy in November, as I begin anticipating all the holiday activities in my near future. I’m actually listening to Christmas music as I type this! It *never* gets old…In fact, if it was socially acceptable, I’d listen to it 6 out of 12 months/year (maybe more..). 🙂

    So glad you were able to go apple picking this year! My family used to go every year when I was young, but it’s been ages since I’ve gone. I think that will be one of next year’s fall goals. Or maybe it’s not too late?

    Your upcoming races sound like they’re going to be fun! I tend to over-train too, but reminding myself that I’m not training to go to the Olympics helps keep things in perspective. 🙂

    Happy belated birthday to you!! I’m going to go check out your previous posts to find that gluten free cake you mentioned! Yum! xoxo

    • November 4, 2011 7:01 am

      Haha, I like that, you’re not in the olympics! Very true, I have to remind myself this is for fun and just for me!

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