Wednesday, March 19, 2008

My First 5k Race — Part 2

So whatever happened with the Run the Reagan? I missed it, thanks to double dose of the flu and bronchitis. I was so miserable the day of the race that there was serious doubts about my ability to get down the stairs, let alone running down the Reagan!

In fact, I was so bad off I went to the doctor for the second time (I had been there Wednesday, too). The race was still going on, and the parking lot was about 200 feet from the Parkway. When we drove up you could see runners going by. I sat there in the van for a moment, watching them.

If there was anything that could make me feel worse, it was the thought that I was missing something I had spent weeks — no, not just weeks, but months — getting ready for. Also missed was my $20 entry fee and free t-shirt!

As a consolation, the doctor gave me two shots in the rump, which amazingly helped me feel noticeably better in just a couple of hours.

Not only did I miss the 5K, but I also missed four days of work, too.

Tuesday, March 18, 2008

The Wii Has Arrived!

We surprised the kids with a Wii this past weekend. Thanks to some generosity from Grandma and Grandpa Boyle (and the IRS rebate that arrived), we bought one while out on a date Friday night.

After setting it up, we promptly played . . . and played . . . and played some more. We didn't get to bed until well after 1 a.m.

As we were falling asleep, we decided to sleep in and see how long it took the kids to see the box sitting on top of the entertainment center.

Morgan and Tannah woke up first and didn't see it for quite a while, but Leigh Ann spotted it right away. I mean, she spotted it from 30 feet away!

For some reason the kids didn't want to watch much TV over the weekend . . . .

Monday, February 4, 2008

Super Tuesday

I did something today that I haven't done since I was in college -- I attended a political rally. Mitt Romney came to town and wowed the crowd. I loved the experience, and got a lot of great photos. Here's one of my best.

It left me feeling energized for what we, as individual voters, can do. Who will win the presidential nominations is not up to the media, the political pundits, or the pollsters -- it is up to us.

No matter who you want to vote for, I encourage you to go and vote. Please take the time to make sure your voice is counted. Super Tuesday is tomorrow, and nearly half the nation will have the chance to speak out.

If you don't know where to vote and you live in Georgia, you can find out at the Georgia Secretary of State website. If you don't know what your local issues are, you can probably find them at the Atlanta Journal-Constitution website.

As for me, I'm for Romney. He's got the AJC's endorsement, and tomorrow he will have my vote. After he lost Florida, I was wondering if my vote would do any good. But the latest Georgia polls show he has made up all of the ground between him and McCain (InsiderAdvantage). So every vote tomorrow is going to count!

Saturday, February 2, 2008

My First 5K Race - Feb. 16!

One of the goals I set for myself last year was to get in better shape. To help me reach that goal, I have been telling everyone that I will run the 5K in the annual Run the Reagan, which is only a couple of miles from our house.

Run the Reagan takes place on Ronald Reagan Parkway, which connects Snellville with Duluth. It is a four lane divided highway complete with exits and overpasses, and I drive it every day to and from work. They will be shutting it down for the day of the races.

Here is a Google map of where we live. The green arrow is our house, and you can see how close Reagan Parkway comes (it runs northwest to southeast).

To get ready for the race, I have started working out at Planet Fitness (only $10 a month!). The first three weeks I used the low-impact aerobic running machines to get into shape. Then I moved to the treadmills to get some real running in.

Today I am actually going to run outside! Right beside Reagan Parkway is Ronald Reagan Park, which has a paved nature trail. It rolls through the trees and changes elevation several times, so it should be a good simulation of what I will have to do in the real race.

I don't want to just show up and walk, but I really want to run the entire distance! Currently, I am up to running 2.25 miles on the treadmill (at 3 times a week), so I have a little more to do to get to the 3.11 miles that a 5K actually covers.

Please wish me luck. I am thinking of training Joshua on how to use the camera so he can get some action shots of me slogging through the race. Whatever we get we will be sure to put it here! Rachel's sister Sarah is also planning on running with me, so we should have some shots of her, too.

Friday, February 1, 2008

Rachel's Cake Creations

As many of you know, Rachel spent the last year taking several Wilton's cake decorating classes. She has had a lot of fun, not to mention baked a lot of cakes, too.

Here are a teaser set of closeups from five of her creations. A link to all of the cakes is at the bottom!

This one is from Joshua's cake decorating contest he had in Cub Scouts last year.

In her second class, Rachel learned how to make flowers and do the basketweave.

The third class was about how to use fondant in your cake decorating.

The third class also finished with making a wedding cake.

Drawing upon all of her experience, Rachel made this "Christmas Tree" for Emma's class Christmas party.

If you want to see all of the cakes in their full glory, go to our Flickr account.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Joshua's First Concert

Joshua surprised us at the start of the sixth grade by wanting to join the school orchestra. When we asked why, he said he had heard the orchestra director play the Harry Potter theme on the cello and he fell in love with the instrument.

Like many of the students in the orchestra, this was Joshua's first attempt to play any instrument, so most of their class time was spent at first on getting the basics down and building up the strength of their fingers.

Well, this past week they finally had their first concert. I was really impressed with how good they sounded and the number of students in the orchestra. I took almost a hundred photos and have put the best on my Flickr account.

Here's one shot of Joshua and his best friend Nate at the end of the concert. Seeing how happy he looked when he was done made all of the cost and effort of supporting him seem insignificant.

Friday, November 23, 2007

The kids' Christmas trees

We have three little Christmas trees, and the day before Thanksgiving we took the kids to Hobby Lobby so they could pick out decorations. Morgan and Tannah decorated one, Leigh Ann and Emma had another, and Joshua had one all to himself.

Everyone had a blast picking out decorations for their trees, and when we got home we made a real mess decorating. Bags and packaging were strewn across the floor, but the trees were beautiful!

Tannah loved the snowmen ornaments she picked out, while Joshua really tried to make a color-coordinated theme for his. The other girls just had fun picking out the prettiest things they could find.

Here is a short video of them describing their trees.