Running my way through California

Its no secret here on the blog – or to anyone in my life – that I miss all my friends in Santa Cruz, like a lot.  So much so that half the time I day dream about quitting law school, selling all my stuff, and hopping on a plane and inviting myself to live in one of my friends’ spare bedrooms.  And trust me, there were a few times it was so close to happening I’m almost surprised it didn’t.

But, as luck would have it I was able to find my way back to Santa Cruz in mid-May after second semester finals were over, AND will be finding myself back there in August – and I’m pretty sure that’s what allowed me to get back on the plane last Sunday was knowing I would be going back…

IMG_0237

There’s no place like home…or Leslie’s home for a get together 🙂

Of course, in true runner form, the first thing I did when Meg picked me up from the Airport May 10, well after catching up of course, was head out with her and another one of the running wives for a few miles of my long run.  I finished it out solo b/c Meg had already run a 10k race that morning, and I needed to get 10 on the books on the Santa Cruz rollers to boost my confidence for Capitola Half Marathon on May 18.  And then we had Verve coffee…because we had to.

IMG_0215

Later, we headed out for delicious dinner + drinks downtown.

Meg & Me

Meg & Me

Sunday morning we had a late morning run with some of the running wives on the hills of Santa Cruz and a new-to-me path. We refueled in the evening with some delicious BBQ foods later a la casa de Leslie – who, btw, throws the best house parties around!

IMG_0222

Some of my running wives at the BBQ

w/ Claudia & Laura at the BBQ

w/ Claudia & Laura at the BBQ

I will admit the fact that I was in California, running in some of my favorite places made taking the rest days I was supposed to take very very difficult.  So difficult, in fact, that I wasn’t sure that my half marathon race was going to go well?  Usually I like to have 2-3 rest days during race week – and like to be about 10ish miles total shorter (including the race – w/ the exception of a marathon race week) of my previous few weeks’ total mileage.  But that quickly went out the window.

Monday I did take a rest day, and just hung out in Santa Cruz with the pups at Meg’s house while she taught or something ridiculous like that – I mean, what’s work?

Sami.

Sami.

And Monday night I got to have tacos (we don’t have real tacos in Virginia/DC) with a good friend, and see the Santa Cruz sunset. I had forgotten how beautiful it was.

IMG_0236

Santa Cruz sunset at Pleasure Point

Tuesday morning, it was back to running with Meg & Leslie before heading to San Jose to meet my nephew and hang out with my family for a few days.  Got in a couple solid runs, spent plenty of time loving on my niece and nephew and helping out my brother and sister-in-law and got to even go to the Giants game with my brother, sister and niece!

IMG_0241

Cutest little man in the world (I’m biased)

Hanging with my niece

Hanging with my niece

IMG_0282

Melting at the Giants game w/ my sister

Then it was back to Santa Cruz to hang out with PhD friends and run/eat some more good food on Thursday.

Drinks w/ PhD friends

Drinks w/ PhD friends

I also got to experience RecoveryPump…

2014-05-15 15.31.18-2

RecoveryPump insanity.

Friday it was more miles along the coast with the girls, chased with an evening of sushi and wine for girl’s night out!

2014-05-16 21.27.50-1

All the ladies – fancy and not.

The fancy ladies

The fancy ladies

After what felt like a solid week of eating, drinking and running nonstop, it was time to start getting mentally ready for the half marathon on Sunday…but since this post is already like longer than any post I’ve ever written, I’ll leave it here for now.  I’ll leave it on a high note from all the friendship, family fun, food, wine, and of course running that happened over my post-finals week in California.  It was easily the best week of 2014 so far.  And it finished with a wonderful race weekend at Capitola Half Marathon…

What is your best week of 2014 so far?  Or best day?

Advertisements

A Spontaneous Fiesta!

Just over a week ago, Mr. K sent me an e-mail asking me if I wanted to come by his place to help eat/cook a fabulous dinner!  I had no idea what was in store for me, but I’m not one to pass up free meals — especially those cooked by the boyfriend.  He’s a fabulous cook.

The menu was quite impressive.  What can I say, Mr. K is an impressive kind of guy.  Here’s what he put on the menu:

fish tacos
fresh salsa
corn guacamole
chips
tortillas
limes & cabbage toppings

I was in Mexican heaven.  Delicious.

The recipes were mostly provided by Mark Bittman, who is a serious genius of a chef, but we did a few alterations of our own.

Cooking:

Yours truly, helping Chef Mr. K.

The food:

Salsa.

(for clarification: we did not make the chips)

Refried beans.

Simple Fish Tacos (see recipe below!)

Cabbage & Limes for topping

The table.

My plate of Mexican goodness…plus the chips +guac/salsa I ate.  And an extra scoop or two of the refried beans.  Such an incredible meal!  I think Mr. K should cook for me (and his friends) all the time!  (Don’t you?!)

Because they were so delicious and easy to make, for your taco pleasure…

Simple Fish Tacos

Serves 4-6

  • 1 onion, chopped
  • 2 jalapeño, chopped
  • white fish fillets (we used cod, probably about 2 pounds)
  • water
  • salt & peppa
  • tortillas (I prefer small corn ones)

Chop up an onion and two jalapeños.  Put onion, jalepeno, fish fillets in large pan.  Add about 1 tbsp water.  Season with salt & pepper.  Put lid on the pan and put over medium heat for about 6 minutes, or until the fish is cooked through — no need to stir!  Once the fish is thoroughly cooks, take a fork and pull it apart (it should just fall apart) to make it taco ready.  Heat up the tortillas either one by one on a flat pan, or in the microwave in a damp paper towel for about 45 seconds.  Then serve and top off the tacos with chopped cabbage, limes and fresh salsa.

‘Twas definitely a wonderful meal!  I’m hoping for another great meal tonight, as he was debating this afternoon what we should cook for dinner!  Have a great Friday night!

What is one of the sweetest things your friends/family/significant other has done for you? Mine would probably be when I came home from Xmas in Minnesota with my family, and Mr. K called me to see if I had arrived, and when I told him I was in Chicago and headed to public transport, he told me not to and picked me up in a Zip Car at the airport!  Then, he proceeded to cook me Vegetarian Chili for dinner (even though I was exhausted) because he was so excited I was back in town!  Truly one of the sweetest gestures ever.