Blog

Bay Area supermom blogger & influencer, Jindy, writes about parenting, travel, running, Disneyland, runDisney, entertainment, sports, food, fitness, beauty, fashion, recipes and other fabulous things.

Rock 'n' Roll San Jose Half Marathon Race Recap

There's something special about running a race in your hometown. Favorite friends, familiar haunts, local pride and that feeling of owning every street, every corner, every mile. Running the Rock 'n' Roll San Jose Half Marathon gave me all of those happy vibes and more.

Finish Line at Dawn

Finish Line at Dawn

Intent on spending time in the VIP Lounge for breakfast, coffee and stretching pre-race, I arrived in San Jose an hour and a half before race time. I parked in the VIP garage and walked across Plaza de Cesar Chavez to the venue. Immediately I was greeted by smiling volunteers ready to point me in the right direction.

VIP Bag Check

VIP Bag Check

The VIP Lounge, sold separately from the race entry but worth every penny, was set-up inside of McCormick & Schmick's just across the street from the finish line. The restaurant is very spacious, and the food and drinks were plentiful.

Breakfast Options

Breakfast Options

Charging Table

Charging Table

Lots of Hydration

Lots of Hydration

I spent about an hour in the VIP lounge getting myself situated and chatting with other runners. Eventually I made my way to the start line, and by 7:30am we were off and running.

This Guy is Travels A Lot

This Guy is Travels A Lot

After having had such a tough time at my last half marathon, and knowing it would be a super hot day, I took my time. I tried a few new things as well. I brought salty crackers and drank Gatorade the entire race. Anything to keep me from feeling as sick as I felt last month. I also really just enjoyed the race, the course, the music and the people. The bands were great, and it was awesome seeing our cheer team along the way early in the day.

Ann Sobrato High School Cheer Team

Ann Sobrato High School Cheer Team

Towards the end of the race, at mile 12 I stopped to take a short video of the team and chat our with coach. I saw so many people on the course that I know, and that was really cool! I many have spent more time chatting and walking than running - but that was fine. I really enjoyed running into people I hadn't seen in forever.

I even ran into my old buddy Sharkie!

SJ Sharkie!

SJ Sharkie!

When the race ended, I couldn't get my phone to snap any pictures which was a HUGE bummer. So I made my way over to the extra medals booth to pick up my Remix Challenge medal, then when straight back to the VIP Lounge. I was really looking forward to cleaning myself up and refueling with food and beer.

The VIP area was now more electric than in the morning. Everyone was really excited about their personal race. I grabbed my bag from the bag check crew and cleaned myself up. Then I sat down on the bar side of the restaurant and ordered eggs, potatoes and beer. Yum! 

Brunch

Brunch

After cleaning myself up, changing into my finisher's shirt and slipping on my new medals, I finally got a post-race photo.

Finally got my post-race photo!

Finally got my post-race photo!

This race is TONS of fun! The course is super flat, fast and SHADY! Even with the high heat advisory, running down the streets with the giant trees really helped as far staying cool. The course support was fantastic as well. I never went without water, potties or Gatorade. The icing on the cake was the VIP Lounge, which I highly recommend for any runner. For me it was extra special because I run alone, so it's nice to have a place to go before and after the race to collect yourself and fuel up.

My total medals for the weekend are super sweet. I have the 5K medal, the half medal and the remix medal. Who could ask for more!?

I'm looking forward to the next race, Rock 'n' Roll Los Angeles. With VIP at that race at well, it will be nice to have a secure, safe place to call home for a couple of hours. I look forward to seeing some familiar faces there as well. You can use code FLOWERSCROON to save $25 off your registration!

Disclosure: I am a Rock 'n' Blog Ambassador for the San Diego, San Jose and Los Angeles Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathons. I have received race entries, but all opinions, photos, training, travel, lodging, meals and miles run are all my own!

Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection CDs Review and Giveaway

Disclosure: I received a set of the Legacy Collection CD’s as a member of the Entertainment New Media Network. No further compensation was received and all opinions are my own. This post may also contain affiliate links.

Walt Disney Records’ newly created line of collectible CDs, Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection, celebrates the anniversaries of Disney’s most beloved and classic films. These collections will feature the original soundtracks, plus archived content that tells the story behind the music. A Disney music lover's dream come true! 

I received The Lion King, Sleeping Beauty and Mary Poppins collections. Upon opening the discs, my attention was immediately drawn to the beautiful artwork on the CD packages. Created by Lorelay Bove, the cover art delicately combines beauty & romance with the well-known historic Disney images.

Armed with green tea and the soft light of my MacBook, I began each morning, for 3 days in a row, with a different set of discs. The first release in the series, The Lion King, was the set I chose to review first. This two-disc set is fulled with pure nostalgia. For those of us with older children, these CDs will bring back the memories of the first time we shared this beautiful film with our children. This set features the original motion picture soundtrack and 30 minutes of previously unreleased score. The music is amazing, and the liner notes are outstanding. Written by Don Hahn (producer) and Oscar-winning composer Hans Zimmer, the liner notes are a bonus for any The Lion King or Disney fan.You will learn the history behind some of the greatest music moments in the film and how they came to life.

In this video Hans Zimmer, Chris Montan, Mark Mancina, Roger Allers, Rob Minkoff, and Don Hahn discuss the journey of making The Lion King.

The next morning, I began my day with the Sleeping Beauty collection. On this particular morning, my daughter joined me at our kitchen table and worked alongside me on her own project. It was so magical to hear her hum along to the songs she loved as a little girl. As we listened to the songs and Tchaikovsky-inspired score from the film on Disc One, I remembered my daughter's first meeting with Princess Aurora at Disneyland twelve years ago. Music has many gifts, and the gift of taking me back to another moment in time is priceless. The second disc is filled with rare-behind-the scenes recordings and never released demos and tracks. The Lost Chords of Sleeping Beauty consists of 3 demos and 3 newly recorded versions of those demos. The rich, fully orchestrated audio is exceptional and worthy of your best speakers. The cherry on top? A feast-for-the-eyes collectable 20-page booklet filled with history, artwork and interesting facts. 

What are The Lost Chords? "Lost Chord" is a name given to a song composted for a Disney film that, for some reason, did not make the final cut. The video below shares The Lost Chord "Evil Evil".

It is no secret that I fully believe Julie Andrews is the true Queen of England, so obviously my favorite set is the 50th Anniversary release of The Mary Poppins collection. This set features over 2½ hours of awesomeness spread across 3 discs. I listened to this set last - while all alone - early Saturday morning with no interruptions. I wanted to savor every last detail of each disc, starting with the Disc One: the original soundtrack.

First released in 1964, the Mary Poppins motion picture soundtrack featured 14 original songs by legendary Disney songwriters Richard and Robert Sherman. Initially, the brothers came to meet Walt with music Annette Funicello was to perform in The Horsemasters. Although they were brought onboard right away, and wrote songs for several projects, it wasn't until they presented Walt with their first rendition of Mary Poppins song sketches that they were actually offered a contract with Disney. The rest is history.

With insanely detailed liner notes by Randy Thornton, the 20-page booklet is a joy to read. I thought I knew everything about Mary Poppins, but I was wrong. The Lost Chords on Disc Two are a treasure. A historic, national treasure.

Disc Three is filled with over 40 minutes of recordings from meetings between Mary Poppins author P.L. Travers, the Sherman brothers and screenwriter Don DaGradi as they discussed the original outline for the movie, including the music. That's not enough? Well, also on Disc Three is an interview with Julie AndrewsDick Van Dyke, the Sherman brothers and Irwin Kostal (who arranged the music for "Mary Poppins," "West Side Story" and "The Sound of Music"). Want more? Disc Three concludes with a 1989 interview with Richard and Robert Sherman as they discuss their work creating the magical music of "Mary Poppins." I'm not kidding. This collection in amazing.

The Legacy Collection will continue to roll out with more CDs in 2014 and 2015. The release schedule for Walt Disney The Legacy Collection is as follows:

The Legacy Collection 2014:

The Lion King        20th     6/24/14

Mary Poppins        50th    8/26/14

Sleeping Beauty        55th    10/7/14

The Little Mermaid        25th    11/17/14

The Legacy Collection 2015:

Fantasia            75th     1/3/15

Pinocchio            75th    2/3/15

Toy Story            20th    3/17/15

Disneyland             60th    4/7/15

Lady and the Tramp        60th    5/12/15

Pocahontas            20th    6/23/15

Aristocats            45th    8/14/15*

Cinderella            65th    8/14/15*

*First to Market at D23

I'm excited to share these masterpieces with you! Enter to win 3 CD sets of The Legacy Collection CDs below. Enter as often as you'd like by tweeting about the giveaway! No spoonful of sugar needed. Good luck!

If it comes to this blogger’s attention that the winner of this giveaway has won on an additional blog for this same prize, this blog reserves the right to chose another winner. Prize will be mailed directly to winner from sponsor. All entries must be received by 11:59pm PST on October 20, 2014. Winner will be randomly chosen at 12:00am PST on October 21, 2014. Prize will be mailed to winner directly from the sponsor. 

Saturday Short: Behind The Scenes with Lorelay Bove

Lorelay Bove, a visual development artist at Walt Disney Animation Studios (“Tangled,” “Winnie the Pooh,” “Wreck-It Ralph”) has created the artwork for Walt Disney Records The Legacy Collection. Her paintings, inspired by the original art, honor Disney’s history and creates a beautiful new look that unifies the entire collection. Her illustrations are romantic, soft and modern. I am particularly fond of her Mary Poppins cover art.

What I love most about this clip is Lorelay's excitement, sincerity and passion. All of those qualities seamlessly translate into her art.

Enjoy & stay tuned for a 3 album review and giveaway later this month sponsored by #ENMNetwork and #DisneyMusic!

Rock 'n' Roll San Jose Expo and Inaugural 5K Race Recap

This weekend I ran both the Rock 'n' Roll San Jose Inaugural 5K and the Rock 'n' Roll San Jose Half Marathon. Taking place over 2 days, and featuring a new Saturday 5K, Sunday 10K, Sunday Half Marathon and a race challenge, the Rock 'n' Roll Running Festival San Jose gave me the opportunity to earn double bling and double swag. How? By running The Remix Challenge: 5K on Saturday and Half Marathon on Sunday.

My first stop was the Expo Friday afternoon. Being local has its perks, namely knowing where to park for cheap, quick in and out Expo access. I picked up both of my bibs, stopped by the VIP booth for my VIP packet and did a little a shopping. All in under 1 hour.

Bib pick-up for both races was a breeze

Bib pick-up for both races was a breeze

My favorite thing at any Expo: no lines

My favorite thing at any Expo: no lines

I also made my way to the official Rock 'n' Roll booth to look at the 3 medals I'll be earning during my Cali Combo quest this month: San Jose, Los Angeles and finally - the CALI COMBO! (I earned the San Diego medal earlier this year.)

The next morning I parked on a side street right beside the start line about 45 minutes before race time. My plan was to PR the 5K. I had every intention of pushing myself hard on Saturday and taking it easier on Sunday - which was predicted to be a hot day.

5K Starting Line

5K Starting Line

For this race, I used both my Nike+ GPS watch and RunKeeper (on my iPhone 6) to track my pace. Not even a couple of minutes into the race, Runkeeper paused itself and I panicked. The pace I read on my Nike+ watch was just too fast to be me and I was thrown off. At that point I just decided to do the math at every mile marker and hope to PR based on my division-and-subtraction-while-running skills. 

The weather was perfect, and the course was fantastic. The loop through downtown was a fun and familiar one for me. I stayed focused, didn't take any photos and just pushed myself until I reached the finish line.

When the race was over I thought it might be a PR race for me, but without official results or even unofficial ones I could really trust - I just decided to enjoy myself in the finishers' area. I drank my ice cold congratulatory beer and headed on over to meet the one and only Roger Craig!

Roger Craig is co-founder of this series and 3-time Superbowl Champion with the SF 49ers. Back when I was a kid and that team was the greatest team in the NFL! It was truly a pleasure to meet him!

Roger Craig

Roger Craig

He is also running the Remix Challenge

He is also running the Remix Challenge

After the autograph signing, I ran into my friend Laura and all of her friends. They had just run the 5K and were heading back into the Expo. I followed them in and we took fun photos and had lots of laughs. They were also running the Remix Challenge and would be back the next day for the 10K.

My friend Laura and I after the 5K at the Brooks photo machine inside the Expo

My friend Laura and I after the 5K at the Brooks photo machine inside the Expo

Plenty of photo backdrops at Expo

Plenty of photo backdrops at Expo

I loved my swag from this race and I loved the fun, flat easy course. The post-race party was fun too!

As luck would have it, I did PR this race. A whopping 25 seconds faster than my last 5K PR in June. Thanks, #RnRSJ!

Don't miss the 10th Anniversary of Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathon San Jose next year! Race dates are September 26-27, 2015.

Please join me in Los Angeles later this month at Rock 'n' Roll LA. Register now and save $25 with the code FLOWERSCROON!

Disclosure: I am a Rock 'n' Blog Ambassador for the San Diego, San Jose and Los Angeles Rock 'n' Roll Half Marathons. I have received race entries, but all opinions, photos, training, travel, lodging, meals and miles run are all my own!