Tag Archives: Hoopla

My crazy busy Chicago Marathon weekend!

A few weeks before the race, I started finalizing my plans for the marathon. Where was I staying? What was I eating? What was I wearing before, during, and after the race? Part of that planning process is planning when to go to the expo to pick up my bib. Chicago Marathon is the biggest race I’ve run, with 45,000 marathoners.
To make a long story short, this race has been on my bucket list, but October has been really trendy for weddings the last few years. When we hadn’t booked a wedding for the weekend of the race, I decided to keep the weekend open, and I entered the lottery. I was one of the lucky folks who made it in on my first try. 🙂 Shortly after I found out I made it into the race, our friends Lindsey and Derek came to us and asked us to capture their big day… scheduled for the day before the marathon. I couldn’t say no. Sure, this flies in the face of all race advice… the kind of stuff that says 1) rest, 2) put your feet up, literally, 3) hydrate, 4) up your carbohydrate intake, etc….
It didn’t matter. I couldn’t wait to work with these guys!!
I knew I wasn’t going to be easy on my body by shooting a full coverage wedding the day before the race, then getting in the car, driving riding four and a half hours to Chicago, arriving at 3 am, snagging a few hours sleep, then running a full… and just when you would think that was the worst part, I realized I couldn’t go to the expo on Saturday to pick up my bib. In the past, when I couldn’t make the expo (ex: it was in Massachussets, and I was still flying in, or I was shooting a wedding, so I couldn’t pop in), the race directors would either 1) mail me my bib, 2) allow me to send someone in my place to pick it up, with a photocopy of my license, or 3) allow me to pick up the bib on race morning. I called the Chicago Marathon folks to see what my options were, and they said that none of those would work. I asked if I could donate my bib to another runner who didn’t make the lottery, and they said no. I asked if I could sell it to someone, and they said no. Unfortunately for me, I was SOL. Of course, I could drive the four hours from home down to Chicago to pick it up on Friday, then drive back home to shoot on Saturday… So that is what I did.
On Thursday night, my friend Henry and his family (including two super cute little girls!) opened their home to me, so I drove 3/4 of the way on Thursday. They pumped me full of pasta and giggles, and I am thankful!

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The expo was grand, and majestic, and superbly awesome. Being an emotional runner, I cried just walking into the place.

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Here you go- a photo recap of some of my favorite things!

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I didn’t spend too much time walking around, because I had to hurry home to get to a photo shoot with Kameron. The Friday afternoon traffic through both Chicago and Milwaukee was pretty bad, but I made it home in just over five hours, and headed over to this shoot. Kameron is a musician and composer, and he was featured in Hoopla this month.

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After my shoot, I went home, ate some sweet potatoes, and packed up my bags: camera gear for the wedding, comfy clothes for the late-night drive to Chicago, race gear, post-race clothes, all my shower and recovery stuff… Our living room was a disaster.
We woke up early and headed up to Wausau to capture Lindsey and Derek’s big day. It was such a fun day, and the time just flew by. Take a peek at why I couldn’t turn them down- a gorgeous, kind, loving, authentic couple. Their love jumps out of all these images, and you can just tell how much they care about their friends and family. ❤

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Derek carved this secret message in the trellis for the ceremony…

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Lindsey even gave me a couple pieces of wedding cake to carb load in the car, and they told a bunch of their guests about the race, so a ton of strangers wished me luck at the end of the night! What a cool couple, and we’re so happy we got to work with them. Congratulations, friends!!
Heidi’s status? Apprehensive but happy.

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We left around 10, headed home, unloaded wedding gear, loaded up race gear, cuddled with Abbie for luck, then hit the open road. Brian drove, and I tried to sleep, but it was a little tricky. Stay tuned for the results of this crazy extravaganza. 🙂

Miles this year: 480.5

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Missing Misty and Thanksgiving, with Noodleini 2012 race recap

Hello, blogosphere. Things have been wonderful over here in our little home. We’re starting to get in the holiday spirit, which makes everything seem more cozy and makes me more sentimental.
On that note, I’d like to dedicate this post to our favorite old dog, Misty.
We had to put Misty to sleep a few weeks ago, and our home hasn’t been the same since.

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We loved Misty with all that we had, and we cuddled her extra lovingly during the last few days. I took my “office” downstairs and worked next to her for a few days, and I cried many tears into her black fur. Even in her old age of thirteen years, she only had a few grey hairs.

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On my last morning with her, I brewed coffee as usual, and I wanted to capture the moment- one that shows how much I loved having Misty in my life, especially the “coffee talk.”

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We love you, Misty. We take comfort in knowing she is somewhere better, living a pain-free life and playing with all the beloved pets that are already there.
Aw, man. I’m crying already. Let’s move on to happier thoughts, yes?
This past week was one of my favorites- THANKSGIVING! For the fourth year, I hosted dinner at my house for my mom and grandparents, and my mother-in-law and her boyfriend. Thanksgiving at our house has come a long way- the first year, we had just finished screwing in the drywall, we hadn’t even taped or mudded yet… And now, our home is almost finished, and beautiful! As usual, Grammie carved the turkey.

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My grandparents are awesome, and awesomely funny, too!

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I made my signature pies…

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…and homemade whipped cream, too! I forgot to take pictures of everything else- but I served a salad with dried cranberries, walnuts, and blue cheese, fresh biscuits, classic dressing, a quinoa dressing, fresh cranberry sauce, whipped potatoes, turkey and gravy, squash casserole, and steamed carrots. Thanks to all the ladies, for bringing contributions to dinner! We ate on time, and the turkey was the best yet!
I had barely finished digesting when my long-time BFF Amy and I headed to Appleton for some Black Friday shopping. We left at 9 pm and came home around 6 am. It was entirely successful, and Brian and I spent the remainder of Friday cuddling and relaxing. We went for a walk with Abbie to the grocery store, and it was a chilly reminder of what weather is to come.
Saturday early afternoon was Thanksgiving with the Wiskowski clan. I didn’t take any pictures- I was too busy greeting everyone! We had a record-breaking crew of 54 folks this year… That’s my kind of Thanksgiving! We left a little early to head over to Brian’s grandpa’s 80th birthday party at the Car Show building in Iola. Everyone came from near and far for this event…

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Happy birthday, Marlin!!

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We left that party to head to Waupaca’s Ale House to capture some images from the Sweet Lips Comedy tour for the January issue of Hoopla. This particular show was focused on deer hunting, and those guys are hilarious!

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After a long day, we slept soundly until that alarm went off early Sunday, at 4:45, and we headed out to DePere for the Noodleini 15K. I love that race. Last year, I ran it with 8:48 splits, and I was so proud. This year, the Noodleini was my longest run since Cape Cod, and I was hoping to finish strong, but didn’t anticipate that I could match last year’s effort. It was a cold and icy morning, with a chilly wind.

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Those 9.3 miles really did fly by, but I was much slower than last year. I kept thinking about how disappointed I was last year when I didn’t place in my division, and that really weighed me down, mentally. I did run a good race, solid effort, and came in strong, happy, and very ready to be done.

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My final time ended up being 1:28:36, 9:30 average pace.

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In a twist of fate, my time last year would have won me first place this year. Of course, we were all slower because of the weather, but here I am, trying not to beat myself up over it. Next year. I’ll catch those girls next year.
We headed out immediately since I was pretty cold, and I hopped right in a hot shower at my mother-in-law’s house. It was wonderful, and I emerged from the shower, warmed up and salt-free, just in time for an asparagus frittata. I’m a lucky girl! After lunch, we went out to the back woods to pick out our Christmas tree.

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Since it’s hunting season, we took precautions to be visible… 🙂

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We found one…

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…and it looks great in our living room! I’ll put up photos of the tree soon 🙂
Thanks for sticking with me on my blogging hiatus. I’m happy to be back!

Miles this year: 627.2

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Fall is here! (Part I)

Happy fall, friends! I know it’s not officially fall until Friday, but the cooler temperatures have me thinking autumnal thoughts 🙂
Thanks for your patience in between posts- fall is a busy time for photos!
I’ve got a few fun photos from camping earlier this month- when we were enjoying the last weekend of summer 🙂

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We even make salads when camping!

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That trip was all about spending some quality time together with our pups, and it was wonderful.
Last Thursday, I had my monthly TU board meeting, followed by a quick trip to O’so for some photos with Joe for Hoopla.

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Brian’s phone died on Friday, so we visited our friend, Devon, at the Sprint store…

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…and Brian became an iPhone user. Yay! 🙂 We left the Sprint store and headed to New London to prepare for the beautiful Green Bay wedding of Rachel and Alex. Their ceremony was held on the St. Norbert campus at the Old St. Joseph church, and their reception was at Crystal Falls, in New London. Here’s a photo review of that gorgeous wedding!

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What a beautiful campus!!

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Rachel is Brian’s cousin, so I wanted to include a family photo of the Oberstadt clan, minus a few. What a big family!

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Now that’s a kiss! Way to go, Grandma and Grandpa!
Sunday was a great day- we went to church at Appleton Alliance with my mother-in-law, Jean, then we did some thrift shopping. We even made a stop at DSW…

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…new boots! We let the pups run at Jean’s house, then headed home just in time for the Packer game. 🙂
I started off the week with two great coffee dates- one with the new percussion professor at the University, and we talked about some repertoire. I’m looking forward to spending some quality time with my marimba when wedding season is over. 🙂 I also met with Kim, from Life is Art– I love talking with other young photographers. Kim is an incredible photographer and also a professor of web and digital media design- she’s an intelligent, artistic lady, and it was great to meet up! Thanks, Kim! 🙂
More to come, as soon as I can…

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Hoopla’s launch, Chelsea and Jacob, old friends, grandparents, and fresh vegetables!

I’ve had a busy last few days. That kind of busy where I’m so happy that business is booming, but I’d love to go spend a few quality hours in my garden. Maybe next week 🙂
It started Thursday evening with the launch party for Hoopla. Hoopla is the new Central Wisconsin magazine that I shoot for. We had the party over at O’so Brewing, and I got the chance to meet the rest of the staff and writers.

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That’s my editor, Heather, and I 🙂

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There’s a bunch of us!

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There was also some pretty delicious cake.
The vegetables in my garden have finally been approaching ripeness. Tomatoes, peas, beans, cucumbers, banana peppers, and jalapeños.

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I love walking out there to harvest food for our meals.
Here’s a funny and unrelated topic… I was telling Brian that I really need to clean out my purse because there’s a bunch of things that don’t belong in there…

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…mayflies, included. Haha.
Saturday brought the beautiful wedding of Chelsea and Jacob. I’ll never forget the beautiful engagement photos we took of this couple in Seattle last fall.
Their wedding was in Mosinee, and it was a gorgeous outdoor ceremony, surrounded by green woods and beautiful flowers from Randy at Evolutions In Design. I love their flowers- always stunning.

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Jacob is a fly fishing guide, so parts of the wedding were fishing-themed- including the boutonnieres!

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The ring bearer even carried up the rings in a little tackle box. Sooooo cute.

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Congratulations, Chelsea and Jacob! We had a wonderful time with you on your gorgeous wedding day! 🙂
Sunday brought brewing beer with our friends, Joe and Mary. Joe writes a fabulous column in Hoopla called “Brew Supply” that covers home brewing, brewery reviews, and the politics of brewing. We would have loved hanging out over there anyway, but we got to call it “work” this time.

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A lot of the brewing process really involves waiting, a.k.a. drinking beer and playing games.

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Even the beer is happy! 😀

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I’ve been watching the Olympics every chance I get, so it’s been some late nights at our house. It makes that 8 am alarm clock seem so early. Self-employment problems, I know. 🙂
I had a car repair appointment on Monday morning, so I had to get my run in “early.” I like to call these types of runs “surprise runs,” since I’m already a mile in by the time I wake up and it’s like, “SURPRISE, we’re running!” I don’t do many of those early runs anymore, but they always remind me of the many miles I logged with my sole sisters, Kim and Nancy. Those ladies had me out running at 5 or 6 am!
Speaking of running- one of the many things that I love about living where I do is that I can run or bike almost anywhere. I love using the term running errands in a literal sense.

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I found a special message on my pharmacy run yesterday.

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Shameless photo of delicious food:

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I’ve had almost the same breakfast every day this week- eggs, avocado, fresh chives, and chopped spinach.
Yesterday was packed with three of my favorite ladies- shopping with my mom, coffee with Amy, and dinner and drinks with Nikki. Too many amazing women in such a short time period. Love you, ladies!

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After all that fun time, I stopped home to visit my grandparents. I love those two people soooo much! Grampie put on his “ears” (hearing assistance) so we could have a conversation. Since his hearing is so poor, we haven’t had a real conversation in a couple years, but we talked all about fishing and he told me some great stories.

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Grammie asked me about fishing, too. She said when I was little, I refused to eat fish because of their “cute little eyes and sad little faces.” Once my grandparents took me fishing up north, I stopped eating my favorite food- Schwan’s fish nuggets. I guess I have always had a soft spot in my heart for fish. 🙂

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I worked for the Almond Tree up in Mercer today. It was a rainy day up there, and I got stung by a hornet!

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I even found a heart-shaped nut.

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We met up with Kim and Mark to go over the details for their wedding this weekend… We can’t wait!!!
I’m off to enjoy more Olympics with my handsome man. See y’all soon! 🙂

Miles this year: 385.7

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