A Year of Costumes and 5Ks

By the time December rolled around, I realized I had a year full of costumes, and 5Ks. I happen to really like running, and I really enjoy dressing up in costumes, so I guess 2012 wasn’t all that bad. Here’s a quick recap of the costumes and 5Ks.

Costume #1: Rocky Party

My friends and I decided to have a party where we dressed up like Rocky, watched all the Rocky movies, and ate lots of Rocky-like food. It was awesome.

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Trying to look tough

5K #1: Mayfaire

This was a great race here in town. Even better, it started at 7 p.m.! How often do you get to race so late in the day? You can read more about the details of this 5K here.

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Smiling at the start of the race

Costume #2: Luau

My girlfriends and I like theme parties, so next on our list was a luau. My friend Rosa has an awesome pool and hot tub, so we took advantage of the beautiful Florida weather on a hot summer day.

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I should learn to hula dance

Costume #3: Rockabilly Party

My coworker Cynthia’s husband David turned 50, and he threw a blowout Rockabilly-themed birthday party. Awesome food, dancing, and music combined with adorable costumes made for a great night.

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My favorite picture from the “photo booth”

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Dancing candid

Costume #4: Halloween

After gentle prodding, I succumbed to the idea of spending the evening partying in Tampa for Halloween. Little did we know, it was “Guavaween,” which is basically a huge block party with Tampa socialites. We had great weather and it was really fun seeing all the creative costumes.

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Dorothy, Rafael, and Cute Sailor

5K#2 and Costume #5: Reindeer Run

Despite getting up at 4:30 a.m. to drive to SeaWorld, this race was awesome. If you participated without wearing a costume, you would’ve felt out of place. The sound of Christmas music and jingle bells surrounded us as we trekked through the streets of SeaWorld. We are already thinking of costume ideas for next year’s race.

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How often can you wear a tutu in public without getting stared at?

I was lazy about making goals at the beginning of last year, but I still managed to make quite a few changes.

  • Probably the biggest change in my life this year came in September when I revolutionized my diet by turning back to Paleo. I wrote an entire post about it and it’s here. Besides meeting a special someone, eating Paleo-style has been the best decision I’ve made in a long time.
  • I had an unspoken goal of reading one book each month and got to 10, so I feel like that’s pretty good. You can see the full list here.
  • I ran my first and second 5K, and logged over 100 miles just in running alone this year. There have been ups and downs in my training and I’ve learned better ways to run, better ways to stretch, and everything in between.
  • I traveled more than I thought I would at the beginning of this year. I visited Boston, Virginia, Connecticut, and Ohio.

Those were the highlights, but I know I’m forgetting things. Anyway. On to next year’s list.

  • I want to see more improvement in my athletic ability this year. I want to get faster and stronger. I’m interested in swimming, and could see a triathlon in my future if I could master a few laps in the pool.
  •  I want flying colors on all my medical checkups, including my cholesterol check I get every three years.
  •  I want to go the entire year without a single sunburn.
  •  I want to read at least 12 books.
  •  Every single day, I want to make someone else smile.

Oh yeah! The Bucket List. My current list is below.

  • white water rafting
  • zip lining
  • run a 5K
  • be a model for a day
  • take a bubble bath in a clawfoot tub
  • eat caviar
  • eat foie gras
  • write a book
  • write my initials in wet cement
  • ride a gondola in Italy
  • ride in a hot air balloon
  • stand underneath a waterfall
  • slow dance with someone I love

Things I’ve Learned in 2012

Before the whirlwind we call “Christmas” begins, I decided to reflect on this year. It’s always been something I like to do. I enjoy thinking on the things I did right, the things I did wrong, the good, the bad,…you get the idea.

  1. You can run from crazy, even break up with it, but you can’t hide from it…unless you change your number.
  2. There is no happiness guarantee with making more money. In fact, making more money might make you less happy.
  3. Gluten is not my friend.
  4. “It’s better to feel pain than nothing at all. The opposite of love’s indifference.” –The Lumineers
  5. Make every effort to keep your family ties strong. When you’re old and need help, they might be the only ones by your side.
  6. Sometimes “To be continued…” sucks, and it hurts, and it doesn’t seem worth it. BUT, you never know what the next season will bring. “To be continued…” is sometimes better than “The End.”
  7. Forgiving and forgetting don’t always go hand in hand. Sometimes you can forgive but you just can’t forget. It won’t be the same as it was, and that’s ok.
  8. The best thing that could ever happen to you might be right around the corner.
  9. It is incredibly hard to find wet cement.
  10. There is great joy in not caring so much about what others think. Taking time to be a little silly, appreciating small things, and sometimes acting like a kid softens the edges of this incredibly hard life.

In addition to a few things I’ve learned this year, here’s a quick recap of what I read. I just recently watched The Jane Austen Book Club and decided to read each of her’s in chronological order starting in January. Sense and Sensibility is next on the list!

  1. Killing Lincoln by Bill O’Reilly-Great fiction-like non-fiction. Does that make sense? I learned so much, but felt like I was reading a novel. killing-lincoln
  2. The Girl with the Dragon Tattoo by Stieg Larsson-The book is better than the movie. Very dark and suspenseful
  3. untitledThe Hunger Games by Suzanne Collins-It’s been years since I stayed up until midnight for nights in a row because I was so hooked on a story. This was my favorite of the series.The Hunger Games
  4. Catching Fire by Suzanne Collins-Very interesting and I can’t wait to see the movie they make for this book. CatchingFire_cvr
  5. Mockingjay by Suzanne Collins-One word: weird. It seemed like it dragged the story on a bit too long. This was my least favorite of the series.Mockingjay
  6. The Art of Racing in the Rain by Garth Stein-If you’re looking for a sweet, pick-me-up kind of book, this is the one for you. Also, I will never look at a dog the same way again.arr_pb_hires
  7. A Painted House by John Grisham-I raided my dad’s bookshelf one day and this seemed interesting. It’s very different from most of Grisham’s novels. It was well written, but didn’t have enough of a “story” to make me feel complete at the end.258
  8. Skipping Christmas by John Grisham-Great short read, especially at this time of year.skipping-christmas
  9. The Lucky One by Nicholas Sparks-Lovely and romantic with lots of great quotes about life. Don’t bother with the movie, or at least read the book first. 9780446698344_1681x2544
  10. Fifty Shades of Grey by EL James-I admit it, I read it. All the hype drew me in. I’ll just say this: S&M isn’t for me, and it took me much longer to finish than Anastasia.Fifty-Shades-of-Grey

Well, I guess life got busy after that and I haven’t read anything since. Killing Kennedy is on my list for next year, along with the Austen novels. Coming soon are my goals for 2013…

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