Beyond the Breakers

Chicago Shenanigans.  Windy City Wrap Up.  Christmas Shopping and Coffee … some days I sit and stare at my screen for an hour before I title a post (no kidding!) because it has to be the *right* title.  And I simply cannot start writing without a title!

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Other days, like today, I just can’t decide on a title ;)  But paired with this picture, the decision was an easy one.  {Title credit goes, appropriately, to Jen}

{photo credit: MP Brandt Photography}
11220102_10206142517895554_8215665910567765726_n A few of us took a girls trip to Chicago last weekend to shop and eat our way through the city.  Naturally, our first stop was Garrett’s!  Lots of caramel and cheddar Chicago-style mix popcorn to go around :)  Just like that delicious jumbo-sized bag I keep getting at Cost-co, but super-duper-uber fresh!!

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Then we made a stop at the Bean – Michelle’s first visit … 

Working up a sweat while holding this thing up!

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And a little stroll through Millennium Park.  Fair warning – in case you couldn’t tell – I think there are more pictures than words in this post :)

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And then there were the cupcakes … easily some of the most delicious I have ever tasted.  Bonus points to Jen for getting hers out of the cupcake ATM!!

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12359922_10206142516615522_1838459500748919116_nSunday morning we were treated to an absolutely gorgeous morning to run along Lakeshore Drive – enjoying the beach, the water and views of the city during sunrise.

12346468_10153866223611495_2405323067751630506_n It was breathtaking!
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We ran out to the little lighthouse that sits atop one of the breakers in the picture, below prepared to document our run the only way we know how … with a group selfie … when we noticed a young couple not far away.  We asked them to take a picture for us, and the young man obliged then shared one he had taken of us just moments before.

A HUGE Shout Out to MP Brandt Photography for sharing the black & white ones with us – your work is stunning Micheal!

I love the analogy here where the water is completely still, motionless inside the breaker but just beyond the breaker is both risk and reward.  You can almost see the landscape beyond the safety of the breaker.  But it’s not until you take a step in faith, to the other side of that breaker, that you can truly begin to appreciate all that lies beyond that barrier.12341358_10206142518535570_6595742009049804077_n

We finished our loop then headed back to get cleaned up and finish up our shopping (and eating) before it was time to head home, back to our families.  12342879_10153829910734630_1956397774105293831_n But not before stopping at the only candy factory in Indiana!  There is no reason to drive right by the exit and not stop, right?  Plus, we needed a snack for our ride home.

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This weekend we are preparing for another race tradition – the Indy 5K/10K Jingle Bell Run benefiting the Arthritis Foundation and this year we plan to be completely in sync throughout the entire race :)

See last year’s Jingle Bell Run race recap {here}  This recap is particularly special to me because it was one of my VERY first posts and introduced you to many of my beautiful runner girls.

My First Blogiversary is coming up next month … what should I do to celebrate??  

Do you take a Girls Weekend every so often?  YES!  It’s good for the soul.  And sometimes also the soles.  If you could plan the entire thing, where would you go/what would you do?

Do you have a favorite Christmas race? 

Share your thoughts!