Tag Archives: running

Sugared Cranberries and a Request

Remember the good old days when I used to blog? That was fun.

The main reason I haven’t been blogging is because the time I used to spend writing is now the time I spend running. Or sleeping. I blog either at night after the kids are in bed, or early in the morning before they wake up. But since I’ve been running a lot more, I go to bed much earlier and wake up crazy early to run. I’m not saying that running has replaced blogging for good. I’m just trying to figure out how to do both.

But I completed my first half marathon in November! (Did you notice how I said “first,” implying there will be more? Heh.)

Me with my shiny new medal and my half marathon car magnet.

Me with my shiny new medal and my half marathon car magnet.

One of my favorite websites is anothermotherrunner.com. I’ve learned a lot from Sarah and Dimity and I especially love their article: What a Mother Runner Looks Like. They recently had a contest to come up with a six-word sentence that best describes your running. The author of their favorite sentence wins a treadmill. Well, it just so happens that I am one of the finalists!

So I am here to ask you a teensy, weensy favor to head on over to anothermotherrunner.com, scroll down to “Who Should Win the NordicTrack Treadmill” and (pretty please) cast your vote for me, Samantha. My sentence is: “I am stronger than I thought.”

It is not, although it could be: “I shamelessly ask for your vote.”

 And as a token of my appreciation, I will share with you one of my favorite Christmas recipes. I cannot claim it as my own, but I can tell you that everybody who tries this, loves it. We make these cranberries every year to give as teacher gifts, and they’re always a big hit.
from Cooking Light magazine, December 2003


  • 2 cups granulated sugar
  • 2 cups water
  • 2 cups fresh cranberries
  • 3/4 cup superfine sugar*


  1. Combine granulated sugar and water in a small saucepan over low heat, stirring mixture until sugar dissolves. Bring to a simmer; remove from heat. (Do not boil or the cranberries may pop when added.) Stir in cranberries; pour mixture into a bowl. Cover and refrigerate 8 hours or overnight.
  2. Drain cranberries in a colander over a bowl, reserving steeping liquid, if desired. Place superfine sugar in a shallow dish. Add the cranberries, rolling to coat with sugar. Spread sugared cranberries in a single layer on a baking sheet; let stand at room temperature 1 hour or until dry.
  3. Note: The steeping liquid clings to the berries and helps the sugar adhere. Store in an airtight container in a cool place for up to a week.
 *I’ve never used superfine sugar. Instead, I measure regular granulated sugar into the blender and pulse a bunch of times until the sugar is more powdery (but not powdered sugar. ‘Cause I’m tricky that way).
Sugared Cranberries from Cooking Light

Sugared Cranberries from Cooking Light

Please, please vote for me to win the treadmill. Just imagine how awesome it would be if I didn’t have to wake up at 4:20 to go to the gym! I might even have more time for blogging!

Just keep in mind that voting ends on Thursday, December 20 at noon MST. I sincerely thank you!!

Have a very Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year!


I’m still here

Hello All!

Yes, I’m still here. And no, I’m not here:

The problem that I’m having is that there is only one of me. It’s a big problem, and I assure you, I’m working on it.

I used to blog at night after the kids went to bed, or in the early morning before the kids woke up. But back in the fall, I started some intense training with my running, which involved waking up at 4:30 a.m. to go to the gym, which basically means that by 10:00 9:00 8:00 oh, who are we kidding, 3:00 p.m. I’m a zombie. And I know zombies are trendy these days, but it doesn’t really help me blog more often.

Tomorrow me, my brother, my sister, and 29,997 other people will be running in the 10-mile Broad Street Run in Philadelphia.

10. freaking. miles.

This is going to be us:

Or maybe we’ll channel Forrest Gump:

 This is what I’ll be imagining (in my delirium, probably around mile 7):

this, around mile 9:

So telepathically send us some encouragement tomorrow morning. I’ll let you know how it went. After they scrape me up off the road (hopefully after the finish line).

Red, White, and Blue Potato Chips with Warm Blue Cheese Dip

I have been setting my alarm for 5:00 a.m. so I can go running. I don’t understand what part of “I’ll get up at 5” my body interprets as “let’s wake up at 4:21” but that’s what’s been happening. Why 4:21? Does that number mean something? Maybe I should play the lottery?

It’s too dark to go running at 4:21, so I just lie there in bed thinking how sucky it is to be awake. And then when 5:00 rolls around, the last thing I want to do is go out for a run. But I have to, do you know why? Because of these:

Red, White, and Blue Potato Chips

  • about 1 1/2 pounds red, white, and blue potatoes
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1 tsp sea salt
  • 1/2-1 tsp freshly ground black pepper


  1. Preheat oven to 450.˚
  2. Slice potatoes into super thin slices. Use one of those fancy slicer-thingies if you have one. I had to make do with a knife. Poor me.
  3. Toss potatoes in a bowl with oil, salt, and pepper. I only used 1/2 tsp. pepper because I was afraid a whole teaspoon would be too spicy for the kids.
  4. Transfer potatoes to two baking sheets. Spread out into one layer on each sheet. Bake on bottom rack in preheated oven for about 15-20 minutes, stirring every 5 minutes so they don’t stick to the pan. When potatoes are as crisp as you like, remove from sheet and place on paper-towel lined plates.

While the potatoes are baking, get the dip ready:

Warm Blue Cheese Dip

  • 8-oz package cream cheese, softened
  • 1/4 cup half and half
  • 2 tsp garlic powder
  • 2 tsp onion powder
  • 1 cup crumbled blue cheese


  1. Stir cream cheese in a medium bowl until smooth.
  2. Add half and half, garlic, and onion powder. Stir in blue cheese. Transfer to a small baking dish.
  3. When potatoes are finished baking, turn oven down to 350˚. Bake dip for 15-20 minutes.

Red, White, and Blue Potato Chips with Blue Cheese Dip

Click here for a printable version

Holy Cheesy Dip, Batman, this was fantastic! You have to make this dip. Right now. I don’t even want you to finish reading this, I want you to go to the store to buy the ingredients and get cooking. Okay, I do want you to finish reading first. But then get cooking. Here’s what the Critics thought:

Don Corleone wouldn’t stop sneaking chips while they were cooling. About the dip, he said, “I want to run away with this dip without it’s parent’s permission.”

Sarah Crewe loved the chips, and politely tasted the dip and said quietly, “It’s good.”

Batman ate a more than generous portion of chips and dip. “This is soooo good!”

Elmo loved the chips but when I showed her the dip she moved as far away from it as she could and said, “No!”

Curious George has strep throat, so he had ice cream for dinner. “That’s no fair! Why does he get to have ice cream for dinner? I wish I had strep throat!”

I halved the recipe for the dip because I (rightly) guessed that only half of us would eat it. Later that night, however, I was wishing we had leftovers! The chips made enough for the five of us to have a side dish to fish. For a Fourth of July party treat, I think I’d double the potato recipe, but keep the dip as is.

I don’t know if I mentioned this or not, but you really have to make this dip. Even if you don’t run at 5 a.m. You still should. Go!