Tag Archives: ice skating

Do You For You

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Do You For You

Hello everyone and happy weekend! As many of you probably know, I figure skated competitively for close to ten years. I still love to hit the rink every now and then to get my skate on, but, I haven’t had a real lesson in about eight years. And, this past week, that changed! After running into one of my old coaches while I was at work, I decided that I would like to try my hand at ice dancing. And, try my hand at ice dancing I did!

I had the absolute best time being back on the ice and actually learning something new. Ice dancing is completely foreign to me, but the old girl can’t jump like she used to so I figured that dancing would be the best way to go. I had a half hour lesson with my coach, Chris, who is really the end all be all in my neck of the woods when it comes to all aspects of skating. Then, I got to practice on my own for a half hour.

By the end of my time on the ice, I was beat! But, boy, did it feel good. As I consider continuing to learn ice dancing, I find myself leaning towards not doing it, because it’s rather expensive. And, then, I find myself thinking that I do so much for others and that maybe I should do something for me, for once. Having a lesson every other week is definitely not as desirable as weekly skate time. But, it’s the best I can do and it sure would make me happy.

It feels so good to have something that I’m genuinely excited about. I’m twenty-four, which, for all intents and purposes, is over the hill in the skating world. But, I came back on the ice strong, I tried hard, and I can’t wait to do it again.

Doing you for you is so important, because if you don’t take that extra time for yourself, it’s so easy to become burnt out. I was definitely getting to that point and just one hour on the ice made me feel totally rejuvenated. And, you just can’t put a price on that. 🙂

Then and now! ❤

How do you do you for you? What is a hobby that you did when you were younger that you would like to get back into? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

An Ode To The Olympics

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An Ode To The Olympics

Hi everyone and happy Monday! If you are anything like me, then I am sure that you revel in every chance that you can get to sit down and enjoy the Winter Olympic games in Pyeongchang. I have been loving taking some time out of my evenings to watch the different events with any of my family members that feel like joining me. And it’s so wonderful to think that in households literally all over the world, families just like mine are doing the exact same thing. If that doesn’t get you in the Olympic spirit, then I really don’t know what will.

Aside from a few choice sports in the summer games, I have always been fond of the Winter Olympics. No, not just because I love watching figure skating, as a former competitive skater myself! But that is a big part of it! Alas, there is something about the Winter Games that is so exhilarating. Perhaps it’s the briskness in the mountain air as you watch the downhill skiers whirl down at seventy miles per hour. Or maybe it’s when the snowboarders do magnificent tricks on the half pipe and your heart catches in your throat. Whatever it may be, the Winter Games have always been magical to me.

All Olympic sports and athletes are amazing. Every single one. But during the Winter Games, I always seem to be exclaiming “How do they do that?!” during every event. Not to downplay the Summer Games, but we all know what those events look like. During the Winter Games, there is so much variety and events where anything goes and it’s so special.

You watch the Skeleton event where it looks like the athletes could fly off the edge of the track at any second. Or maybe you’re checking the ice skaters out as they hurl themselves in the air and revolving four times. And each event, you see something that makes you think to yourself, “they must be crazy”. And maybe they are. But if crazy gets you to the Winter Olympics all the way in Pyeongchang to give you the opportunity to represent your country, then I want to be crazy too.

Who else is an avid fan of the Winter Olympics? What is your favorite event? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Featured Image By: Brit+Co

Christmas Surprise Pt. 2

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Christmas Surprise Pt. 2

Hey! Someone who is very dear to me is my neighbor, Alice. After years of living next door to her, we have recently become close and I revel in our almost weekly coffee dates at her place. About a month ago, we ventured to the darling Two Cafe in Solon, Ohio for lunch and had a total blast. Not only is Two a cafe but it’s also a boutique with the most beautiful handcrafted items for sale.

Included in the boutique section of Two was a little red ice skate that we both agreed was made for me, as a former Lil Red skater girl. During our gift exchange, I learned that Alice made the almost forty minute drive back to Two to get me the skate decoration for Christmas. Take a look:

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Besides for absolutely LOVING this gift and how adorable it is, I love the thought behind it the most. Alice literally saved this in her archives as my Christmas gift and made a special trip to get it just for me. That’s better than any gift that I could ever receive. I value my neighborly friendship so much, and her care and beautiful thoughts behind this present are something that I will never forget!

What is one of the most thoughtful gifts that you have ever received? How do you put special thoughts into your gift buying? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

AnkhorRed’s First Annual Bloggers Conference Highlights

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AnkhorRed’s First Annual Bloggers Conference Highlights

Hi everyone and happy Thursday! Today, we are going to discuss three of my favorite things from Lil Red’s trip to the Big City for my bloggers conference with Kate from Ankhor You. Obviously, I could go on for literal days on end about the BC, but I don’t want to give you guys FOMO on what was an amazing trip! I know, I know, I’m far too kind. Anywho, let’s get started:

1) The time spent with Kate:

Honestly, it really didn’t matter where Kate and I had our bloggers conference, because I’m confident that we could make any location fun. Cemeteries, dollar stores, the middle of nowhere – but given these options, I’m glad that we were in NYC! If you think that Kate is the coolest, sweetest, most fashionable girl on the planet based on her blog, just wait until you meet her in real life… BECAUSE SHE IS!!!!!!

Kate was always someone that I was impressed by and admired before I met her, but our BC just solidified that for me even more. Not only is she as genuine and kind as she is via her blog, text, and FaceTime in person but she really is a modern day Renaissance woman, as she describes herself on her page. As a writer/skater/yoga instructor/amazing human/fashionista, she takes Manhattan by storm, and does it all while walking literal miles per day in the fiercest outfits you’ll ever see.

Kate is a person who follows her dreams and achieves them in her own way and I think that everyone can take a note from that. From binging on Harry Potter to walking down Fifth Avenue and eating hella food, being with Kate was everything that I hoped it would be AND MORE. And you better believe I miss her like crazy!

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^^^ SHE’S ALSO SO PRETTY OMGGGGGG!

2) Skating at Rockefeller Center:

As I mentioned yesterday, Kate and I are both former skater girls, which is how we initially bonded. Then, upon talking further, we realized that we are basically the same person, lol good times. Anyways, I knew that after reminiscing with her constantly about skating, that going together during our BC was a necessity. Although the TWENTY-FIVE DOLLAR ADMISSION into Rockefeller was steep and, sadly, it is nowhere near as big as it is on TV and film, we had a blast.

It was so much fun to be able to skate around the rink and (cautiously) make our way into the center to do a few tricks when it was safe for us to do so. I love going skating with my friends and family, and even though I was so far away from Ohio, I felt right at home with Kate on the rink. It was so special to be able to share the ice with someone who genuinely appreciates it as much as I do. I’m looking forward to skating with Kate again hopefully soon, but maybe next time we’ll be in Ohio where admission onto the ice is free or way cheaper!

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3) Eating (literally) all the food:

Sigh. I go to NYC and instead of writing about sightseeing or all of the amazing places that we went to, I choose to write about food. But I like to eat, SUE ME FOR IT. Kate took me to all of her favorite places like Maison Kayser, Le Pain, BareBurger, and Bonjour Crepes & Wine. For four days in a row, we ate like queens and, although my wallet and waistband weren’t thanking me, my heart and stomach definitely were. #fatandhappy

Going to New York and experiencing all of the different options to eat at was incredible, albeit a little overwhelming! In Akron, Ohio, we do have some specialty restaurants, but for the most part, we have a lot of chain dining. Think, Applebee’s, the Olive Garden, TGIFridays, etc. Being in a location where literally every restaurant is a specialty one was insane! I’m so happy that Kate gave me options of places that she knew that I would like, because we probably would have spent a majority of our bloggers conference waiting for me to pick a place to eat!! I miss Kate like crazy, but I would be a liar if I didn’t say that I miss all of the food, too! 😉

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So there you have it, my highlights from AnkhorRed’s First Annual Bloggers Conference! And let it be known that I LOVE YOU, KATE!!!! What is one of your favorite things to do in New York City? What places are on your travel bucket list? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Monday Update: Take A Walk Edition

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Monday Update: Take A Walk Edition

Hi everyone and happy Monday! I hope that all of you had a fantastic and relaxing weekend. So, technically, this Monday Update should be called Take A Walk/Run Edition (a rawk?) but Take A Walk sounds a bit more snazzy so we’ll just go with it. ANYWAYS, this past week, my mom decided that she would like to give walking at the nearby middle school track a go and asked if I would like to join her. Because I am a loving daughter and also because I’m trying to get my beach body in check I said, albeit a little grudgingly, “sure”. ALSO, the “comfort” few pounds gained when I was still with my ex-boyfriend are no joke so, I repeat, I really want to get my beach body in check.

So, my mom and I made our way to the track and because simply walking bores me, I thought that I would try to run as much as I could before taking a walking break. And LET ME TELL YOU, the ol’ smoker’s lungs were on FIRE. Despite this, I walked/ran (rawked) a mile and a quarter and felt pretty happy about it. Granted, it felt like pure and utter torture, but it was sort of fun? Can torture be fun? I guess the answer is YES.

My mom and I have gone to the track five times within the week during the evening and each time, I’ve been able to run a little bit longer than I was able to the last time. This is exciting to me. For those of you who don’t know, I was a competitive figure skater for a long time but gave it up when I was about sixteen (I’m 22 now). I miss doing things that involve athleticism (even though shopping is a sport, damnit), so it felt really good to be able to do something to get the blood pumping again and put my legs of steel to use.

Am I going to be the next Usain Bolt any time soon? Absolutely not. But I would be ecstatic if I could make it around the track once (which is a quarter mile) at a run without stopping to walk. It’s nice to have goals to accomplish even if they’re small and it’s also fun being able to be with my mom even if we’re just waving at each other from our different locations on the track.

I never thought that I’d say that I was actually looking forward to going for a rawk and getting sweaty, but I definitely find myself looking forward to it during the day. I even want to start hitting the ice again, although it would be just for fun. Being motivated in an athletic way for the first time in a long time feels good and I know my beach body goals will be achieved sooner or later. So here’s to bikini shopping not being a total pain this year!

^^^ As always, I have no rights to this song or video (I wish I did!!).

So there you have it, this week’s Monday Update: Take A Walk Edition! How do you plan on achieving your perfect beach bod this year? Who else enjoys a good walk, run, or rawk? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

TJMaxx Gift Card Purchases

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TJMaxx Gift Card Purchases

Hi everyone and happy Monday! This past week was the Special Olympics games and it was a fantastically fun time. All of my students were very successful in their events and I couldn’t be more proud. At the banquet following the games, one of my students and his family presented me with a late graduation present – a beautiful framed photo of myself and my student from last year’s games and a gift card to my favorite place on earth…TJMAXX!!! I was so thankful for such a thoughtful gift because they seriously hit the nail on the head. I love having my new picture of such a happy memory on my desk and I had a blast doing some shopping with my mom to spend my gift card this past weekend.

The prezzie actually couldn’t have come at a better time because I’ve been wanting to do a major skin care haul so I can have a year’s supply of all of my must have beauty items without the hassle of waiting around for deals all year. Until the price is right at The Body Shop for all of my necessities, I was able to put two new moisturizers (as I was running low on my Vitamin E TBS cream) and one of my favorite cleansers on back stock. Take a look:

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The Haul:

  • Destiny Boutique charcoal cleanser
  • Lanocreme day cream
  • Arad day cream

In case you guys don’t already know, I’m obsessed with Destiny Boutique and I got this cleanser from TJs not too long ago. But, I saw it in the beauty section and thought it would be a great addition to my skin care back stock so into the cart it went. After finding my favorite cleanser, it was time to look for some new moisturizers. When it comes to creams, my skin really isn’t picky at all but I had the hardest time finding them in the TJs beauty aisle. Seriously, all they seemed to have was night creams and masks so I felt lucky that I found two day creams that I think will work just fine.

I’m always excited to try products that isn’t native to the ol’ USA so when I saw that the Lanocreme moisturizer was made in New Zealand, I definitely wanted to give it a go. As far as the Arad cream goes, I have never used any of their products but I have heard good things so I decided to go with that one, too. I’m a little anxious to try both of these out considering I’ve been using The Body Shop’s Vitamin E moisturizer steadily for the past couple of months so we’ll see how it goes. Fingers crossed that I’ll have good things to say about it in an upcoming monthly beauty finishes post!

The last of my gift card was used on restocking the communal TBS body butter and lotion hoard that my mom and I share. A Raspberry body butter for me, Vanilla Chai for her, and a cocoa butter lotion – my favorite! If you love The Body Shop products as much as my mom and myself and you have a TJMaxx near you, then I can’t recommend stopping in and scoping out their beauty aisle enough. You never know what you might find!

So there you have it, my TJMaxx Gift Card Purchases! What is one of your favorite items from The Body Shop? What is one of your favorite scores from TJMaxx? I want to hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Ice Skating Fun

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Hello everyone and happy Thursday! Last Sunday my darling boyfriend, Kyle, and I went ice skating at the Lock 3 skating rink in Akron, Ohio. I skated competitively for quite some time and now I’m a coach for the Special Olympics. Kyle and I have never been skating together before so I was so excited when he finally agreed to making a date out of it on Sunday afternoon. We bundled up, I gathered my skates (I’d rather die than wear rental skates), and then we hit the road for our date.

Once we got to Lock 3, we saw that the rink was pretty crowded. Lucky for us, though, it cleared up by the time we were done waiting in line to rent skates for Kyle, getting our skates on, and walking over to the rink. This was Kyle’s first time ever on ice skates and right from the get go he gave it a valiant effort, which I thought was so sweet. Walking to the rink which was about one hundred feet away proved to be a struggle, to say the least. To me, skating and walking around on skates is second nature so I never thought how difficult it must be to put these contraptions on your feet for the first time and then walk to the rink let alone skate on it!

Once we got on to the ice hand in hand we began our first trip around the rink. My poor Kyle got the worst rental skates on the planet and I felt so bad at how difficult it looked for him. The blades on each skate were so crooked but I didn’t have the heart to have us walk back to the rental shack, get new skates, and then have to walk all the way back to the rink. After a few times around the rink, the skates started to hurt Kyle which is pretty common with rentals. We then devised a plan that I would go skate for a while, he would watch and rest, and then we could skate some more together.

I happily took the opportunity to get some skating in for myself. When I’m coaching, I rarely get the chance to do any spins or jumps before or after the session so it felt so good to do some of these things on my own. Whenever I go skating at a public rink, I’m always so flattered by the people who stop to watch me do my thang. I was greeted to some applause after I pulled out of a spin and many a “good jobs”, “beautiful” and “well done” throughout the hour or so on the ice. My favorite compliment came from a teenage boy who was with a group of friends who asked me if I would stay on the ice and do a show after every one exited the rink for it to get zambonied. It was definitely an unexpected and very sweet compliment, considering the boy was surrounded by his gaggle of male friends!

After a few minutes of skating on my own, I always would return back to Kyle so we could take a journey around the rink together. After a while, we both decided that it was getting cold and that we should head back home. We got off the rink and I walked while Kyle waddled back to the rental shack to take off our skates. Taking our skates off and putting our shoes on felt so good that we used the term “pillow feet” to describe the walking on air feeling!

The real question that arises from this is “did going skating with your boyfriend really happen if you don’t have pictures”? The answer is NO, so to prove the validity of this post, take a look at some cute pictures of me and Kyle. My featured image photo is my favorite picture of us!

^^^ I love us!!

So there you have it, some weekend Ice Skating Fun with my beau! We had a blast and I hope we can hit the rink again sometime soon. What is your favorite winter sport? Who has never gone ice skating before? I wanna hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Monday Update: Winter Fest Fun Edition

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Monday Update: Winter Fest Fun Edition

Hellooo everyone and happy Monday! I had a sub par weekend due to some unfortunate family falling outs BUT I did have an awesome Saturday morning! I coach figure skating for the Special Olympics and at the Lock 3 skating rink in downtown Akron a winter fest was held through the Summit Developmental Disabilities Board. I had such a blast with my skaters and their families and my mom joined us as well which made the outing even better! Let’s discuss:

Lock 3, as pictured in my featured image photo, is a fantastic landmark in Akron. There are concerts there during the summer and a lot of great winter activities as the weather gets colder. It was a frigid morning on Saturday but when my mom and I arrived at the rink, I was happy to see a lot of my skaters already there chatting, skating, and tying up their skates.

I was excited for my mom to meet everyone and I was also pretty pumped to have some Sarah skating time, too. When I’m coaching, I rarely have time on the ice to do any of my old jumps or spins so it felt SO good to be able to break out some of the tricks up my sleeve, even though my skates are dull as dish water…They need sharpened so bad! After some time to myself on the rink, more of my skaters showed up, so I got off to assist in tying up skates, helping with stretches, and introducing my mom!

After everyone was geared up and ready to go, we all got on the ice together along with the members of the community who were there. I was under the impression that my skaters were going to be able to perform their routines that they’ve been working on as their showcase for the morning, but I was in for a pleasant surprise once the ice was cleared and my skaters began to line up.

I got off the ice and put my blade guards on then took my spot by the side of the rink to watch the show. But because the event was thrown together pretty last minute, it turns out that my skaters were just going to have the ice to themselves for five or so minutes to show off a little. I then got called over from my spot by my students and the organizers of the event because they wanted me to join the skaters on the ice!

I haven’t been on the ice to “perform” in years and it felt great to share the rink with such wonderful skaters. All of my students got to share some of their moves with the crowd as I skated back and forth between them to check up on them, offer words of encouragement, or give suggestions. The exhibition was a hit, and the Akron Beacon Journal was even there taking pictures! All of my skaters did so well with their laps, spins, and gliding and I was so proud.

After our five minutes of fame, the doors to the rink opened and the community members were able to join us. I got off of the rink and was greeted by the crowd who was so kind and a big hug from my mom. She told me that “every second spent on skating was worth it to watch you just now” and it warmed my bitter and cold heart.

I spent a little more time on the ice with my students and then my mom and I hit the road. I didn’t exactly want to go but it was SO cold and my mom didn’t dress accordingly! The winter fest was a huge success and it was one of the best times I’ve had in ages. I was so happy that my mom, my skaters and their families, and the community was able to share in such a special event!

So there you have it, this week’s Monday Update: Winter Fest Fun Edition! I hope all of you had a great weekend! Do you have something similar to Lock 3 in your neck of the woods? Who has gone ice skating this winter? I wanna hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

Weekend Off

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Weekend Off

Hiii everyone and happy weekend! I hope all of you are having a wonderful and relaxing time and are up to a lot of fun. Unfortunately, things in the world of Lil Red are not going so hot right now so I’ll be MIA for the weekend to be depressed and miserable. -__-

I do have one nice thing to look forward to today though! My Special Olympic figure skaters who I’ve been coaching are having a performance at a skating rink in my neck of the woods this morning. A sensory friendly winter fest will be happening and it should be a lot of fun! I can’t wait to have some proud mama moments when I see my skaters perform their routines that we’ve been working so hard on! So there’s that. 🙂

Asides from that, I’m just really not feeling my life right now. So, if you need me you know where to find me via comments, email, or Facebook. But fear not, I’ll be back with you for the Monday Update soon! Does anyone participate in any winter sports? Who has some big weekend plans? I wanna hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah

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^^^ Thanks, Sweet Brown. ❤

Monday Update: Special Olympics Edition

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Monday Update: Special Olympics Edition

Hellooo everyone and happy Monday! I hope all of you had a fantastic weekend, I sure did! As you guys might remember me mentioning before, I figure skated competitively for a hefty portion of my youth. Thanks to my background as a skater, I’ve been given the opportunity to coach figure skating for the Special Olympics. I had my first practice with my skaters this past Thursday and it was one of the best times of my life! Let’s discuss:

Every Thursday for the next several months I’ll be at the Kent State ice arena for an hour coaching my new friends for the Olympic games in February. I had the best time during my first evening getting to know all of the skaters and their parents. It also felt so good to get back on the ice because I haven’t skated since last winter! I spent my time on the rink going back and forth between different skaters to check on how they were doing and help them improve. It was so rewarding every time a skater accomplished something that I helped teach them!

I had so much fun coaching my skaters but I also really enjoyed just standing back and watching them skate. All of my friends seemed so at peace while they practiced their sport and it was nice to see big smiles and hear laughter throughout the rink. I was legitimately bummed out when the session came to an end but I made sure that before the ice got Zamboni-ed that I was able to have a race around the rink that I promised to one of my speed skaters. He was thirteen years old and was a freaking speed demon so I can imagine I’ll be constantly reminded of his victory every session by him and his uncle, which I’m so okay with!

I seriously can’t wait until next Thursday so I can see my students and their families again. It was so touching how gracious the parents or guardians were after I got off of the rink but I should be the one thanking them because I think I got much more out of my time than the skaters did! I’m so excited to go on a coaching journey with my new friends and their support systems and I’m so ready for another wonderful session this week!

In other news, my boyfriend Kyle and I had our two month anniversary on the 20th which is really exciting stuff! I also got to sit down with one of my good friends to discuss her Trades Of Hope campaign this past Thursday so you can expect an article about that in a few weeks! AND after skating this upcoming Thursday, I’ll be staying in Kent for a little while longer to meet with a really talented musician, John Patrick Halling, to chat about his cross country tour this past summer! It should be a lot of fun so keep your eyes peeled for lots of cool new posts. 🙂

I hope all of you are having a great start to your week and make sure you tune in at http://www.lifewithlilred.com for all of the latest and greatest! What was everyone up to this weekend? How do you plan on celebrating Halloween? I wanna hear from all of you, so leave me a comment and let’s chat! Much love. -Sarah