A Run to Remember

Sunday, August 30, 2009

Today was a big day.  I ran in and finished my first half marathon.  Thinking over that statement, I think I am still in awe of accomplishment.  Not only because I finished but because I raised almost $1200 in the process for Lorenzen Cancer Foundation, a leading non-profit that uses its money to fund Pancreatic Cancer Research.

I wrote about my stepfather Jim and my desire to run with a purpose back in May...see this post. Last fall while we were busy flipping houses, I decided to start running again to beat the stress...I mean, who are we kidding, at that point there was a lot:)  So then when it was too cold to run, I sort of just stopped exercising all together, unless you count a few random dates with Jillian Michael and her 30-day shred.  So when spring came around, I jumped at the chance to start running again.  So in May, I got serious.  I laced up my shoes, paired it with a race, and got going...training for what ultimately would be my first half-marathon.  So anyone can do it...3 months to a half!!

So back to the race...

Last night I was so nervous and giddy all in one little package, ready for the race.  I laid out my things, wrote a reminder note, and set the alarm for 5:15.  After an okay nights sleep, I awoke ready to go.

(here's my stuff...pants/shirt/socks, HRM and watch, Ipod charged up, waistpack with water, and shot bloks for extra energy)
(this is my friend Shari and I before the race...she did awesome!!!)
So after grabbing coffee and a peanut butter english muffin, I hopped in the car with Alex.  He so generously and lovingly drove me to Woodbury, held my things while I found the nearest port-a-potty...just in case, and came to four different mile markers to cheer me on...i love him.  There were around 400 people running in the race.
 To give some background, I haven't been training very vigorously, just trying to log some miles and get that long run in.  In the past 3 months, I've ran about 7 long runs, and lots of 3 mile runs.  Last week when I ran 10.5 miles I was averaging 12 minute miles, on Thursday I ran 2.5 at 9 minutes a mile, so for this race I was shooting for 11 min. miles, even if I came in dead last.  I was just trying to finish:)
(here I am gearing up for the start)
(here I am freezing hoping it will start soon...it was around 50 degrees this morning)
(around mile 6, jamming out to Third Day, Bebo, and others...getting my Praise on)
(crossing the finish)
Biggest accomplishment after raising money for a fantastic organization...I ran at a pace of...10 minutes and 30 seconds, torching 1200 calories!!!  Far beyond what I ever thought and ready to race again...it's fun:)

and the award goes to??

Thursday, August 27, 2009

My amazing husband won another award and this one is even better
We entered 2 projects into the Qualified Remodeler Design Awards.  Qualified Remodeler is a renowned trade magazine for remodelers.  Well, we found out...
We won the GOLD in a very competitive field, best whole house under $200,000.
So in October we are headed to the award ceremony in Indianapolis...
Job well done Alex:)

To Abide

Friday, August 21, 2009

Abide: transitive verb 1. To wait for : AWAIT 2. To endure without yielding : WITHSTAND, to bear patiently : TOLERATE 3. To accept without rejection intransitive verb 1. To remain stable or fixed in a state 2. To continue in a place : SOJOURN John 15:7

"If you abide in me and my words abide in you, ask whatever you wish and it will be done for you."
so basically..."if you (wait/endure/accept) in me and my words (remain/continue) in you"
How can we abide?

The Little Black Book

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Last week, while putting all of our books on the bookshelf, I happened upon Alex's little black book. No, not that kind of little black book! This little black book was his journal, the journal he had while we were dating. And I did what most would do, I opened it. I read it from front to back! I mean, we're married now, what harm is there in that:) I was intrigued by what he thought, encouraged by his love for me, and reminded of his deep, deep love for Jesus. Here are some quotes (I asked his permission) that I happened to love...brought to you from the mind of Alex, through his little black book! -(Dec. 3rd-after dating 6 months) Things I'd like to tell Andrea: "I hardly want to spend time with anyone but you (why would I, you're my best friend) -(9/29-the night of our first kiss) "I wasn't even positive that I wanted to kiss her because I wasn't even sure if I was physically attracted to her...Boy did that turn out differently than I thought...she's amazing!" Don't worry that one made me chuckle, I knew that one already but it was just funny to hear it in his words...later he wrote how beautiful I was...God does amazing things:) To my best friend as we near three years...I love you!

My Grandma Ruth

Monday, August 10, 2009

"The word is near you, in your mouth and in your heart; because if you confess with your mouth that Jesus is Lord and believe in your heart that God raised him from the dead, you will be saved" (romans 10:8)
This is my grandma Ruth, the mother of my mother.
Believer in Jesus, wife, mother, sister, and daughter.
This was at Easter, just five short months ago.
She lived 91 years, over 60 of them married Now she's with Jesus and the angels. I'm going to miss you. Last time I visited with her, a mere month ago we reminisced: her childhood on the farm (just like Laura Ingalls), her stint as a one-room school house teacher, dating my Grandpa, their wedding, serving our country as Rosie Riveter in the factory, her children, her cookies (yum!)... we remember her youth, her womanhood, her. We love you.

Our Vacation in WI

Saturday, August 8, 2009

We started off our vacation with a very special trip to Kohler, WI for some golf and relaxation with my dad and step-mom. Our room was magnificent, the shower amazing...I mean it's the home of Kohler fixtures, it better be good...and some amazing golf at Whistling Straits.
Here are the Kohler sheep...they allow the sheep (straight from Scotland) to roam the course:)
Then later in the week we headed up to our cottage...what a view!
Here's Luke fishing off the dock
Jack watching to see if he can find the fish
Kate getting cozy with Alex
Me and Kate...can you see the resemblance? Oh yes, that's b/c she looks like Daddy just like Auntie does too!
Grandma, Jack and Luke heading out on the paddle boat
The donuts from Manderfield's...the one on the bottom left, yeah that's my favorite:)
Alex and I golfing...if you look close enough you can see Alex teeing off.
Here's the birthday boy...my nephew AJ, who just turned 3
Peek...there he is!
Kate playing some catch
AJ's newest baby brother, Jace, wearing his cute plaid outfit from Auntie
Kate's new sparkly shoes...oh la la
The Winter's: Jen, Chris, Jack, Kate and Luke
Baby Jace...I just can't get enough:)
Auntie and Jace
Getting ready to blow out the candles
AJ with mommy and daddy
Grandma and the birthday boy

10 Realizations after a vacation in WI

Friday, August 7, 2009

Alex and I just got back from a 10 day "stay-cation" of sorts in WI. For the first time in our almost three years of marriage, we went back to my childhood home for more than a few days. This time around I wanted to eat at certain places, see certain people, and really experience and appreciate my hometown. This was NOT easy to do:) After living in MN for more than 10 years, being back in WI was a little shocking, but maybe not in the ways one would expect. So throughout the 10 day trip I came up with my top ten realizations after being back in my hometown...and these being said, I love my hometown! 1. Exercise is NOT a way of life. I realized this while Alex and I were playing Reid golf course, the muni track in town where my dad grew up playing. What did we notice...we were the only people over the age of 15 that were walking the course. This is a SHORT course people. It's just not the way of life. Sad:( 2. Life is much SLOWER. People live at a slower pace. They don't speed on the highway, you do not need to be a defensive driver, they enjoy relaxing, and seem to move, well just slower. 3. Appleton is a SMALL town with big city conveinances. I used to think Appleton was more metropolitan than it really is, in fact over the week, it dawned on me that it has lots of metro things like Chipotle, Panera, Godiva, a Coach store, etc. but the people, well they are unabashadly small town, and I LOVE it!! 4. The food is AMAZING! This is one thing the big city cannot replicate. I literally started salivating the minute I walked into Manderfield's bakery for my favorite donut I've been waiting 3 years to introduce Alex to. He agreed...they're the best. El Azteca, Friday night fish, Tom's Drive In, Manderfields, Nakashima, Pizza Palace, etc. Good food. 5. People love their SPORTS...Brewers, Packers, Badgers...It's a fact...we in WI love sports... 6. APPLE has not had the overwhelming success that is has in the city. In fact, there is no apple store...and not everyone is raving over it's newest creation. 7. The PHONE is still the way of contacting people. Unless you are under the age of 21, a person still makes most contact with another human being through the use of the home phone, office phone, or cell phone. No texting or email. Interesting:) 8. Driving 30 MILES really takes 30 minutes and most people think that is a long drive. As I hit up the outlet mall I realized that the EAA traffic everyone was talking about really only meant I would have a 5 minute delay in my 30 minute drive. There is no traffic as compared to the city, and yet most Appleton-ites would say they are starting to get a rush-hour. 9. An IKEA would not make it here. People are traditional in their stylings and still appreciate the solid oak cabinetry most here in the city would see as totally 80's and rip out. Modern has not yet left it's mark, nor has being GREEN for that matter:) 10. GROCERY shopping...this goes back to the food...no where else can I get squeeky cheese curds for under $3. Gotta love that. Along those lines include kaiser rolls, brat buns, mozzarella whips, and more. There is NO place like home. I love the smell, the sights, the tastes, the idiosyncrasies, the novelty, and the fact that almost all of my family is there. The memories, the schools, the people big or small, the noises, the parades, I love all of Appleton and I was so happy to see everyone I did, sad not to see those I missed, and thouroughly satisfied in my stay-cation....Looking forward to next year:)

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