Thursday, April 28, 2011

Thanking God today...

As I sit at work today, eating my weekly Deli on 5Th Cuban sandwich and Brownie, I break into tears every time ABC news breaks into programming with another death toll update. Yesterday was an emotional day. This picture is of the tornado that ripped through my hometown, taken by Gia Kennedy, someone I don't know, but have been following on Facebook because she lives near the tornado's path and was able to get pictures of it and its aftermath. It came through just south of downtown Enterprise, walking distance from the Elementary and High schools I went to, a mile from my parents house. Thank God they weren't affected. Thank God they weren't home.

I've lived in the south all my life. I've spent many many nights in the family storm shelter praying to God to save our house and our community. For the first time in my 30 years on this earth, I know someone whose home was destroyed. I've seen it on TV so many times that I was immune to it yesterday when we were on the air for almost 7 hours. But when I learned that my friend LaWanda lost everything while I was sitting here yesterday evening wondering what I was gonna have for dinner, I became humbled and eternally grateful that my family was spared once more. LaWanda and her daughter are fine. They escaped the storm without harm. They are grateful to God for their lives.

While LaWanda and Kaitlin are safe, others are not. I've heard horror stories all day today. It's days like today I wish I didn't work in TV. I hear the things we can't broadcast, details no one wants to know. 5 people died in Clarke County yesterday. I didn't know them, but I learned today they are related to friends of mine. It's truly heartbreaking to realize how destructive nature can be, wake up in your own bed after an uneasy nights' sleep and remember that others didn't have a bed to sleep in.

Please remember the Southern states in your prayers. Search and rescue operations are still ongoing in Alabama and other more devastated areas. This event will take a long time to recover from. Many will not recover. We will definitely never forget it.

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Week 4 of 5...

This Saturday's race (however small) will be the 4Th race in 4 weeks... With one more to go... 5 races in 5 weeks. I've never done that before. Maybe there's a reason.
I think my IT band knows the reason.
The Bridge Run was Race #1 of 5, setting a 10K PR and getting under an hour for the 1st time. YEAH!! Then came the Anderson Cup, which I did okay on, placing 4th in my age group. (That hill at the end sucks!). Last Saturday I ran the Lamar 10K, improving my 10K time by 2 1/2 minutes! (55:40) I ran 12 miles on the trails Sunday without much pain. Monday my IT was pretty sore and Tuesday when I tried to run with DeeDee, but it was hurting really bad. Tim made me a homemade foam roller and I've been doing some new stretches. Today I ran an easy 4 with Mindy and it felt stiff but no pain. So we'll hope for a good pain-free race this weekend (Camp Eagle Ridge 5K at Okatibbee) and take it easy next week for the Renaissance Half Marathon in Ridgeland on April 30Th.... Who knows, maybe I'll get lucky, set a new PR, and win a new Honda! :)

Last week, Pete ran the Krispy Kreme 5K . The company hosts these races all over the place. You run to the turnaround point, eat 1 DOZEN donuts (!!!), and then run back! Pete came in the top 10! WOW! I'm more proud of him for not vomiting!

Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Bridge Run Weekend!!

Our Charleston venture was awesome and very much needed! As you can see, we rented a nice spacious minivan, a Toyota Sienna, which was the perfect size. Everyone had leg room and enough space to crash once we got on the road at 5am Friday morning...

King & Queen of the middle row...

King of the road... We loved the sunroof!
Once we got settled in the hotel, we drove around the old base. (Ken just couldn't wait). This is the townhouse where Papaw, Mamaw, and the kids lived. Mom remembered what they looked like when she visited us, but Ken knew exactly which building and apartment. They are renumbered and now an apartment complex of questionable safety, but back then these were base housing.
the one on the right.
Mom has a picture of her on this porch as a toddler.

Later we met Pete, Kelly and some friends of there's at Andollini's Pizza on Rivers Avenue. We failed to realize that it was April Fool's Day. We were met with a funny surprise....

Thrift Store Masters!! Pete & Kelly with their friends, Noah and Robin Reed.

Saturday morning, we woke up super early to head to the starting line for the Bridge Run. Pete, Kelly & Josh were a little late, so we weren't able to get a photo of all of us. Josh didn't register for the race, but decided to try to sneak in. He was successful. He walked the race Bandit style....

On the Bus to Mt. P

Waiting to Run...

From my corral, I could see the start line.

Mile 1.5... heading to the bridge
Mile 2.5. On top!

Mile 4.5... turning onto King Street
Pete and I were gonna start together, but he was late. He passed me somewhere on the bridge and then I ended up catching up with him near mile 3. I saw his bright white chicken legs and then NAVY on his sweatshirt and knew that was him... We ran together for a mile or so, then I slowed down and he took off, finishing at 52:14. Noah was right behind him at 53:56. I ended up finishing at 58:02!! My goal was under an hour! It was the first time I ever got under an hour in a 10K. Pete and Noah bought girlie pink running shorts at the expo. They both wore them with NAVY shirts.... When he finished, he said he was pretty cold, among other things...

We hung out on the King Street side of Marion Square to wait for Mom, Kelly, Wes and Josh. I tried to get pictures of all of them, but only got Wes and Josh. Kelly finished in 1:28:38. Mom came running by us like an Olympian! I was so proud of her! She said she jogged off and on during the race and cut off a good bit of her time, finishing at 1:41:20. Josh hung with Wes and they finished in 1:57:21.

My Friend Sandy from high school found me on Facebook and said that her Husband was running the race too. We met up in Marion Square for a quick visit.
After we caught up with everyone, we all walked to the Market for a little while and then headed back to the hotel to shower and change. Part of King Street has pavers and Deb found this one.....
Gullah Sweetgrass Basket maker
Later we came back downtown and walked around the Battery and up East Bay to Rainbow Row and through the neighborhoods to St. Phillips' and St. Michaels' churches.

Rainbow Row

When Ken was a kid, he "took" a cobblestone from one of the streets. There are only a few cobblestone streets left.

Such a beautiful day!

Taking a break behind City Hall.

These folks had the right idea.

Sullivan's Island.

On Saturday night, we went to Gilligan's, a "must eat there" when visiting Charleston.

On Sunday, Wes, myself, Ken, Deb and Josh went to Mt. Pleasant. We had a little while before our Fort Sumter boat left, so we decided to visit the new park that was starting to be built when we left. Mt. Pleasant Memorial Waterfront Park. I so wish it was there when we lived there. It's places like this that make me wish we never left!
The memorial for Mt. Pleasant soldiers

scene from out boat ride to Fort Sumter. USS Yorktown on the left.

After Fort Sumter, we went to see the Hunley. The Hunley was the first submarine to sink a ship in the civil war. It was lost at sea for 100+ years. The 8 guys were MIA. The sub was foun din 1995. They wouldn't let us take pictures of the Hunley. Its being kept in a water tank to prevent it from drying out. It's a really interesting story behind it. (Click the link for more info.)
On the way back to Pete & Kelly's for dinner, we passed by the Hump Bar. Mom went nuts... It's not real by the way. There's a duratran in the window.

Cooking out at Pete's apartment... no alligators in site.