The Dog And Pony Christmas Show

Date: December 31, 2014 at 8:02 am- by Ali- Comment(s): 34

There was Thanksgiving…

I ran a Turkey Trot. But I never wrote a blog recap because I wrote about going to Hawaii instead. But I ran the Prospect Park Track Club Turkey Trot and my parents came to watch and it snowed. I ran it in 38:41, which is a 7:44 pace. I basically won.

I ran a Turkey Trot. But I never wrote a blog recap because I wrote about going to Hawaii instead. But I ran the Prospect Park Track Club Turkey Trot and my parents came to watch and it snowed. I ran it in 38:41, which is a 7:44 pace. I basically won.

…and then there was Hawaii…

This is me posing with tree sticks during a hike in Hawaii. We thought we were hiking to see some waterfalls, but we never found them and eventually turned around. Sad. Good try, though.

This is me posing with tree sticks during a hike in Hawaii. We thought we were hiking to see some waterfalls, but we never found them and eventually turned around. Sad. Good try, though.

…and then the holidays came and went.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM ALI, LUCY, AND THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY LIONS. This may or may not be legal. We're not sure.

HAPPY HOLIDAYS FROM ALI, LUCY, AND THE NEW YORK PUBLIC LIBRARY LIONS. This may or may not be legal. We’re not sure.

And because of the festivities in Hawaii, Brian and I figured we should spend the holidays together for the first time, visiting both our families all over New England. He called it “the dog and pony show,” which I guess makes me the pony show and him the dog, because I have long hair and I like to prance and gallop and I can’t be tamed. Brian is the dog because he likes to ride bikes.

Anyway.

The holidays were really wonderful, if not totally exhausting.

As Dog and Pony Show, we drove first to New Hampshire to see my parents for Christmas Eve…

Like many families, it seems, we have a Christmas Eve tradition of getting very drunk and exchanging a few presents, including new Christmas pajamas. This year, I got a Santa suit onesie. So. Yeah.

Like many families, it seems, we have a Christmas Eve tradition of getting very drunk and exchanging a few presents, including new Christmas pajamas. This year, I got a Santa suit onesie. So. Yeah.

…then to Beverly, MA, to spend Christmas Day with my brother and sister-in-law and Tyler and Abby…

I demanded we pose by the tree for a family photo. Next year, I will frame this photo and give it to everyone in the family. BRILLIANT.

I demanded we pose by the tree for a family photo. The mostly matching outfits were not planned.

…and then to Rhode Island to spend Day After Christmas with Brian’s family…

A gift from Brian's mom AKA my soon-to-be mom-in-law AKA the best gift giver ever. IT'S A COWBELL WITH OUR LOVE ON IT.

A gift from Brian’s mom AKA my soon-to-be mom-in-law AKA the best gift giver ever. IT’S A COWBELL WITH OUR LOVE ON IT.

…and then back to New York to spend December 27 Day doing touristy things with Brian’s family (a group of nine people traversing midtown to see the Rockefeller Center tree, Bryant Park, the Radio City Christmas Spectacular, and all the lights we could find).

We had a lovely day, but I don't think I would recommend doing all the NYC holiday sights on the Saturday after Christmas. It takes hours to cross the street. There are so many people. And they are all lost.

We had a lovely day, but I don’t think I would recommend doing all the NYC holiday sights on the Saturday after Christmas. It takes hours to cross the street. There are so many people. And they are all lost.

Along the holiday way, there was a lot of champagne and at least 3,892 cookies. Ponies love cookies. There were also two new baby llamas, but I don’t have a picture of them to show you because it rained the whole time we were in New Hampshire and my phone is allergic to rain.

I also finally saw Frozen, which is exciting.

You know who loves Frozen? Tyler. He also loves the "Llama Llama" books, which is great because so do I.

You know who loves Frozen? Tyler. He also loves the “Llama Llama” books, which is great because so do I.

Actually, I saw the first 20 minutes and the last two minutes, and I slept through the rest. So I don’t really know the deal with Kristoff and Olaf and Sven, but I do understand the meaning behind “Let It Go” now, which is good, since I am considering that for the song to which I will walk down the aisle at our wedding. “Letting go” of my last name and my ability to lie about my credit card bills. It makes sense, plus it’s a really solid, crowd-pleasing jam. I would go with the classic Elsa/Idina Menzel version or this version. Not the Demi Lovato one. I love the sound of little kids singing, so maybe instead of hiring a band or DJ, Brian and I can just find some kids and teach them the lyrics to songs like “Shake It Off” and “Anaconda.”

We tried to take a nice photo with Tyler and Abby in their matching track suits (courtesy of yours truly, duh), but Tyler doesn't really seem to like Abby and wouldn't pose next to her. It's fine. It's because she spits up a lot, I think. Get over it, Ty. She barfed hot white lava on me like 100 times.

We tried to take a nice photo with Tyler and Abby in their matching track suits (courtesy of yours truly, duh), but Tyler doesn’t really seem to like Abby and wouldn’t pose next to her. It’s fine. It’s because she spits up a lot, I think. Get over it, Ty. She barfed hot white lava on me like 100 times.

But first we need a date and a venue and that is all overwhelming so we’ll maybe talk about it some other time but not now. Back to the Dogs and Ponies…

BACK UP OR I'LL SPIT UP ON YOU! Actually, Brian was the only one who walked away puke-free that week.

BACK UP OR I’LL SPIT UP ON YOU! Actually, Brian was the only one who walked away puke-free that week.

I ran only once during the holiday week and, for the first time in my adult life as of late, opted for family time over fitness time.

And of course, the one time I did run it was cold and pouring rain. At least I wasn't biking in it. HAHAHAHA BRIAN. WAS THAT FUN FOR YOU? (It wasn't. I asked.)

And of course, the one time I did run it was cold and pouring rain. At least I wasn’t biking in it. HAHAHAHA BRIAN. WAS THAT FUN FOR YOU? (It wasn’t. I asked.)

Abby and Tyler make me so much happier than running ever could. And my pants may be extra tight right now (because, let’s be honest, they were tight going into the holidays to begin with), but I am also very happy. Those kids are damn cute. And Tyler doesn’t care if Auntie Ali has to wear sweatpants all the time because they’re the only things that fit right now (a la Regina George).

"Cool yoga pants, Auntie Ali. I like the thick waistband and the way they are stretchy and fit no matter what."

“Cool yoga pants, Auntie Ali. I like the thick waistband and the way they are stretchy and fit you no matter what.”

I know the levels of cheese and joy have been pretty off-the-charts around these parts lately, but I understand why people get engaged around the holidays. It was really fun and exciting and lovely getting to spend a few days with our families and talking [very early and mostly hypothetical] potential wedding plans and ideas. So, again, good job, Bri-Dog. Well played.

I'M SO FANCY, WON'T YOU TASTE THESE SCONES? I'M IN THE FAST LANE FROM L.A. TO DOM PERIGNON. Yum.

I’M SO FANCY, WON’T YOU TASTE THESE SCONES? I’M IN THE FAST LANE FROM L.A. TO DOM PERIGNON. Yum. (I see you creeping back there, Mom. Cute.)

That’s all for now. I’ll be back soon, because you know I’ll be doing a little “2014 reflection” and “2015 excitement.” And also because this post was supposed to go up three days ago but, yet again, I broke my blog so it had to wait.

Also β€” last thing, really β€” I am planning a post (I know, who am I? Actually planning a post!) with some Crohn’s updates and a bit about my experience so far in a clinical trial. Somehow it’s been almost a year since I enrolled in the trial and it saved my little life. So if you have any questions β€” about Crohn’s or clinical trials or Hawaii or Brian or what kind of Christmas cookies I like β€” have at ’em below and I will answer them. I am expert in all things, so a Q&A post will be worthy of a bookmark in your preferred internet browser. Obviously.

May your days be merry and really really bright.

May your days be merry and really really bright.

PS I love you.

PPSS I’d love to know about the best gift you gave for Christmas or Hanukkah. So I have some ideas for next year. Thanks.

34 Responses to "The Dog And Pony Christmas Show"

YAY CHRISTMAS!!!!! I am at work right now, thought I would see if you posted and YOU DID.

Now that I’m all caught up, we can talk wedding all night long. SEE YOU LATER.

#TREAT

Tracy Schwartz says: December 31, 2014 at 8:52 am

Went to see the tree on Christmas Day and it was empty!! Guess that’s a positive of celebrating Hanukkah!!

Looks like you had a great holiday!!

Best gift given was towel warmer to my sister. The whole family is constantly using it now!

Have a Happy & Healthy New Year!!

Great post!!! Holidays with each other’s families. That’s the best and glad it went well because now they are allll yours. There were zero pics of christmas cookies in this post. Please explain.

HOW CAN I TAKE PICTURES OF THE COOKIES IF I AM BUSY SHOVING THEM IN MY FACE?

Just stopping by because I couldn’t help myself on the best christmas gift…

Have you heard of theracane? I’ve been wanting one forever but just never got it. My boyfriend got me one for Xmas. #gamechanger.

http://www.theracane.com

If it looks super nerdy it’s because it is but OMG it is so good on the muscles.

OMG yes, we used to use this at Dance Spirit all the time! It’s the best.

I am trying to convince my fiance that we need to order custom cowbells to give out as wedding favors. (Oriental Trading Company has the best prices. Just in case you needed to know that.)

GOOD TO KNOW.

My pants are getting rather tight too . It may have to do with peanut butter fudge or homemade frosted sugar cookies. I love anything mean girls related, like today is Wednesday and on Wednesdays we wear pink, and I have my pink hoodie on. I got a pink fit bit and that’s pretty cool. Best present I gave was matching camo sleeping bags to my nephews ages 6 and 2,

So much happiness in this post! Love it.

My bottom is also noticeably bigger since Christmas. I dieted all yesterday and didn’t lose a pound.

Also Idina Menzel is MUCH better than Demi Lovato, but you can google the Lea Michele version and it’s not bad either. My own personal rendition in the car beats all of them though.

Best gift I gave were L.L.Bean boots, because a) I’m not that good at giving gifts, and b) nobody likes cold toes. Merry Happy New Year!

i love reading your posts – you always crack me up and have the best one-liners and sense of humor. so happy for you and Brian, love the onesie, and hope you have the happiest of new years and continue to feel so great.

I like this comment a lot. Thank you for being nice. <3 Let's be friends.

YAY!! I just finished my THIRD FREAKING WEEK of having to take off running (the longest break I’ve had to date) due to a really bad flare, so I could really use the “hang in there, chum! You aren’t alone”-ness of a Crohn’s post! I’ve been trying to find a research study forever but none I qualify for ever seem to be around me. I know you are (or at least were) on Remicade – I’m about to (hopefully) get started on Humira. Were you scared at all about the biologics, and if so how did you make yourself feel better about it?

P.S. This is also like my favorite blog ever and I heart you so darn much.

Ugh, I’m so so sorry πŸ™ Answers coming your way in the next post. Thinking of you and hoping some relief comes your way soon so you can get back out there. <3

Loved starting my morning with this post!

I was thinking the other day (you know, not in a creepy way), but wondering what your next steps are as far as the clinical trial goes. Do you get to keep taking the medicine? Do you go for lots of follow-ups?

And I didn’t give anything great, BUT my aunt gave everyone these white kitchen towels that had recipes from my great grandparents on them- they were printed in their hand writing. Totally cool if you’re into the family history thing. =)

Happy New Year!

Best Christmas gift I gave: Kindle Paperwhite for my boyfriend. He is obsessed. I refuse to ever read not real books though.

I would love any recommendations for Hawaii! We are dying to go in the near (distant) future when we have more money πŸ˜€ your trip looked awesome! Glad you had a wonderful Christmas, and looking forward to your next post!

I gave my boyfriend a GoFetch aka a GoPro harness for our puppy so basically now we get to make movies from our dogs point of view. Does life get better than that? NOPE!

THAT IS AWESOME.

CHAMPAGNE!!! I can’t wait to drink all the bubbles tonight!! Cheers to 2015!!!

http://november-project.com/npno-member-spotlight-frannie/

Ali – NO-NP tribe members think you are kind of a big deal. Take a look (towards the end of the blog post). Happy New Year

Aaaah that’s so awesome! Frannie! Yes, she was with us at the start, I remember it well. I love this shout-out. Haha. YAY NP!

You’re holidays sound wonderful! I also saw the tree with friends from NJ (who for some reason love to brave the insane crowds each year). My favorite gift is a ticket to see Cabaret on Broadway.

I love seeing how other people celebrate the holidays – everyone has their own little traditions…and some people are creating new ones!

Where’s the red top you’re wearing in cold run/bike picture? I like it.

I gave Eric “bacon soap” for Christmas…it’s shaped like soap and smells like soap. Excellent for those bacon lovers out there. I got it from Outlaw Soaps, and they have soaps other than bacon in case people like whiskey or coffee or something.

It’s Lululemon, and I love it because it’s insanely warm (too warm, sometimes β€” I’ve had to ditch it mid-run more than once now), but there are no exterior pockets, which I find super annoying. Still, it was on major sale on Black Friday so I’m into it. (It’s not on the website now, but if I see it pop up I’ll send you the link!)

What a lovely holiday celebrating lovely news. My favorite gift this year…well, we just did stockings and bought a bed as a gift for each other, because we’re old and boring. Ask me next year πŸ˜‰

I am so happy to hear you are doing so much better. My best gift continues to be my munchkin, but the one I hope to use the most is my new Ninja for making smoothies.

Hi Ali! I am curious about your weight gain since you mentioned it. I have Crohn’s too and have had it for a long time, like you, and I’m just a year older than you. (I’m also a former dancer turn into [semi] runner!). I was doing swimmingly well until I had a really stressful job the second half of 2010 (I quit by Christmas 2010) that landed me in the hospital by February 2011 and again in September 2012. To combat my flare I reluctantly decided to start Remicade after a lot of consideration. Within a month of doing it I had gained 20lbs seemingly overnight, with an additional 10 in the years to follow. By June 2011 after 4 infusions, I quit and swore off all biologics forever. As of June of this year, I have finally started to lose the weight but don’t think I didn’t try absolutely everything in the meantime (doctors, dietician, weight loss clinic, nutritionist). I guess my question is do you feel you are experiencing this because of the Stellara? Is the delivery of the medication is similar to that of Remicade? Are you glad you did it? And will you stay on it?

Yay, another happy morning reading an Ali post! Love all your recent fun and happenings! I gave cookbooks this year to people – anything Ottolenghni! Oh, and I gave my husband an iron skillet (for me to make Seattle Dutch Babies)! See I am a massive foodie which is weird since I have Crohns (right)?! I too am curious about your study. My doctor wanted me to try Humira but I refused, for a while or forever. I will try other things (old school Crohns medicine), better eating, more running, less stress (yeah right) and surrounding myself with shiny, happy, people and blogs (like yours)! Run on Ali! PS. Did you eat Spam Musabi in Hawaii?

YES, I ate spam musabi! We got it at Marukame Udon. Brian made me try it. I did not like it. But he did. (The rest of the answers coming your way in the next post.)

I am currently going through a battery of tests to get diagnosed with crohns. The doctors think it’s a really mild case. I’ve only had flares when I travel. I’m curious to know how your crohns is doing and how you manage it when you travel?

Hiya and happy new year! Looking forward to your CD update (I’ve had a flare-free year too! Happy anniversary to us!) too. Best gift I gave? hmmm probably the yummy lavender body butter from Kiehl’s to my mother-in-law- must-have for dry winter skin! I’d LOVE to know more about your running clothes- so cute and fun and I’m bored of my stuff! Cute, red jacket, pink pullover etc etc!

My nieces (2.5 yo and 4 yo) are also enamored with Frozen and they were dressed in Elsa for Halloween! Anyway, looks like it was a great holiday for both of you. Happy New Year both!

2014 was so good to you! And I’m totes digging the drunk jammies. That’s how all holidays should play out!