Good afternoon to you! I am coming to the end of my Vermont Adventure and in the attempt to go out with a bang, Jack and I headed about an hour and a half north to the Ben and Jerry’s Factory in Waterbury, VT. The drive was very scenic (as they all have been thus far) with lots of mountains and random farms with animals on the sides of the highway. Jack is an ice-cream lover and I am not so much. I mean he could eat a half-gallon on his own and a spoonful or two does it for me, regardless, I was semi-interested in checking out the factory, but it took a while for us to get moving this morning!
Part of the reason we were slow-moving was because I spent much of my morning watching the Boston Marathon. I have never actually went to the city to see the Marathon being run, but with my current fitness goal being to become a runner, I was very into watching it this year. I couldn’t imagine running 26 miles because sometimes 4 miles seems impossible. I really almost cried when Tebya Erkesson from Ethiopia beat the second runner-up by just 3 seconds. I wanted to be there to give her a hug and jump up and down. In a weird way I felt her sense of accomplishment and wonder if that is what I will feel a similar sense of accomplishment after completing my first race. I don’t want to say I would never attempt a marathon, because anything is possible, but right now I am preparing for my first race ever- a 3.5 mile-r on Mother’s Day (hey, a girls got to start somewhere!).
What was your first race that you ever ran, and what did it take to get you prepared mentally and physically? Has your running taken you to a place you never thought you’d imagine going? For example, training for a half marathon or marathon? I can’t wait to run my first race at the beginning of next month and would love to hear any of your prerace rituals and training tips!
Before leaving Woodstock we stopped at a local fair trade, organic coffee shop. I got an iced coffee with 2% milk (from a glass container!) and their home-made oatmeal. Now, I just started liking oatmeal a few months ago and until now have only had the Quaker Instant oatmeal. This oatmeal was very crunchy and warm. It may be my new favorite breakfast!
The oatmeal contained:
- steamed milk
- organic oats (they had a granola type crunch to them, yum!)
- maple syrup (everything in Vermont has maple in it!)
When we got to Ben and Jerry’s it wasn’t too busy, but more than half of the people who were there were younger than 12. We got a parking spot next to the Flavor Graveyard, where they pay respects to past Ben and Jerry’s Flavors such as Tennessee Mud and Rainforest Crunch. It was cute!
We paid $3 to take the Factory Tour which started with a 7 minute video about how Ben and Jerry’s came to be. It was pretty entertaining seeing how it started as a small shop in Vermont and grew into an international business. From there we got to stand above the factory floor and watch how they made the flavors of the day: vanilla and chocolate chip cookie dough. It wasn’t too interesting but I couldn’t wait to get my free sample at the end of the tour!
Our sample was a new flavor, Boston Cream Pie, and it was so delicious (even Jack liked it!). It is boston cream pie ice cream with pastry cream swirl and chunks of vanilla pound cake. The taste smelled the way a Yankee Butter Cream candle would smell. So delicious and sweet. I sucked the whole sample down and debated licking the cup when it was gone 😉
We stopped for lunch at a pizza shop in Stowe called Pie in the Sky. It was a local pizza shop, nothing fancy. I started with a salad of mixed greens, tomatoes, croutons, and maple balsamic vinaigrette dressing. Yum!
We also got an order of mozzarella sticks.
For pizza I ordered us a half cheese/half pepperoni pizza, well done, on whole wheat crust. It was really cheese-y and crisp. I only had a piece and a half because for some really odd reason I WASN’T in the mood for pizza. WHAT!?! I think the tough thing about going away is that you need to eat all of your meals out, and at this point I just don’t want to eat at all! I can’t wait to go home and try a new chicken or Italian recipe!
When we continued on our way back we stopped by Cold Hollow Cider Mill which makes its own apple cider and apple cider related things. In some of the blogs I have been reading, they use apple butter on bagels and toast so I got a jar of Cold Hollow Spiced Apple Butter, which is made with apples, maple syrup, and cinnamon. It is kind of a fall food to me but I am dying to try it! I also got a couple of apple cider doughnuts to have for breakfast tomorrow morning!
In the same parking lot there happened to be a store for a local wine vineyard, Grand View Winery. For $1 I got to try 7 of their wines. The interesting part of the wine is that it was not wine made from grapes. I guess grapes don’t grow too well in Vermont and the woman said they like to use locally grown fruit. If they do make wine from grapes they have them shipped in from the Finger Lakes in NY. The wines I tried were so fruity and sweet, I couldn’t imagine drinking a whole glass! It was like drinking juice. I tried pear wine, cranberry wine, blackberry wine, Mack Jack (which is a cider), Riesling (which I bought a bottle of), cherry, and raspberry infusion. Like I said, the wines were tasty but WAY sweet. I can imagine how my head would feel the morning after drinking a bottle.
Tonight we are going to have dinner and check out a local open mic night at the only place around here open past 9 p.m! I am not planning on staying too long because we need to be up and out around 10 tomorrow morning.
Did you watch the marathon in Boston or on T.V? Or better yet, did you run? Share you race day stories with me!
Early to bed, early to rise…..
Catch ya back in Mass..