October 20, 2014

Weekend Update

I am still recovering from my whirlwind weekend--whew! I'll give you the rundown by days...

Because I had parent/teacher conferences on Thursday night we didn't have school Friday. Woo Hoo! I had the pleasure of spending the day with the team from Dayton Local at the TEDx Dayton event. It was phenomenal and I'll be reviewing it in more depth later. 

I don't make it downtown much, but Friday was certainly a perfect day for it.

Corey and I attended my friends Sean and Heather's wedding which was gorgeous! I think Fall weddings are my favorite by far. 

Once at the reception the hosts wasted no time getting the party started and the live band had everyone to their feet as soon as forks were laid to rest on the tables.

Glad I could celebrate with you two, Sean and Heather, on your special day! Congratulations!!! 

Corey and I left straight from the wedding and drove to Columbus to pick up our half-marathon race packets. I may have been mildly freaking out at this point considering I can count on both hands the number of times I did a distance run to prepare. Oops. 

We met up with Natalie who graciously let us crash at her place for the night and did our best to carb load at The Wine Bistro.

The restaurant had a cozy atmosphere that would have me racing back for hot, steamy soups and chilled wine all winter long if I lived close. I went for the lobster and shrimp fettuccine while the boy went for spaghetti and meatball--yes one giant meatball. Natalie had an incredible french onion soup which had a warm savory flavor.

Race day! Corey and I got up bright and early, said our goodbyes to Natalie, and shivered out the door into the still, dark morning. In all honesty I was dreading this half-marathon because I have not been running or preparing for it at all.

Once we arrived I jumped into the last corral and the energy from the crowd and fellow racers was too contagious to ignore. I pumped myself up, prayed that God would carry my out of shape body across that finish line, and set out to do my best. No PR, (didn't even think it would be an option!) but was very happy that I finished under 3 hours--2:49 to be exact! 

The cause (Nationwide Children's Hospital), the clever signs, and the man upstairs is how I made it across that finish line and it was an amazing feeling. Today my legs might tell you otherwise--owwieee!

I hope your week is off to a great start! 

October 12, 2014

Athens, Greece

And so the day has finally come. My last post of my summer trip to Europe.

For our last day we traveled to Athens which was where everyone flew home from. We said goodbye to our island oasis and took a fast boat then bus straight to the Acropolis.

The sun was at it's hottest and streaming down on us without a cloud in the sky. Our guide was a pretty, young woman who had the best story telling voice. Even though it was hot and hard to pay attention, I loved listening to her as we walked the ancient site.

After dodging in and out of shade spots we made our back down the mount and stopped by the marble olympic stadium before checking in to our final hotel.

Not wanting to waste our only day there, most people headed out around the corner to a lovely restaurant with outdoor seating in the glorious shade.

Megan, Quinn, and I split a huge greek salad, chicken souvlaki, and baklava for dessert. Of course with 2 helpings of tzatziki sauce on the side. If you're traveling and want to eat on a budget Greece is the place to be! It was cheap and easily the best meal I had on the whole trip.

We browsed the many stalls and vendors around the city including the ever rare Starbucks and H&M before giving in to summer's heat and heading back to the hotel for a nap.

For our final evening together I managed no pictures, but we laughed like old friends, drank merrily, and dined on delicious food with traditional greek dancers bobbing and clapping around us. We bid our final goodbyes to each other sipping up our last drinks on the rooftop lit up by the acropolis in the distance.

I opted not to sleep since I had to be up at 3 am to go to the airport. So after our goodbyes I dressed in my flying home attire and sleepily taxied to the airport with Alston and Omid. Their flight left first and then I was left alone to reminisce about my 3 weeks in Europe. I'm so happy to have had the experience and met so many wonderful friends.

You better believe I'm already planning my next trip back, Europe!

October 11, 2014

Reluctant to Share

Today was the kind of Saturday I dread. I woke up with a massive headache to the reality of mounds of laundry needing to get done amongst other chores.

I slowly made my way out of bed and started the laundry. My head wasn't great, but better so I decided to make my first pumpkin creation this season. Pumpkin Pie Snickerdoodles! While I let the dough refrigerate I finally showered for the day and went to knockout my headache for good with some fresh air down at 2nd Street Market.

It was really neat to see some local graffiti artists repainting the wall behind the market. I love the new, bright colors and cool designs.

I'm a bit reluctant to share my farmer's market tip as I would very much like to keep the secret to myself, but heading to the market on Saturdays about an hour before they close is a gold mine. Vendors are ready to give up their goods for the week at a steal of a price.

I scored my flowers for $1 a bunch and then the kind flower man only charged $5 for 6 bunches. The food vendors often set out end of the day deals as well! This is much more to my liking than getting up early and fighting the 8 AM saturday crowd.

I grabbed a meat pie from Cheeky Meat Pies for lunch. It was the first time I have purchased from this food vendor at 2nd Street, and it was delicious! Warm, hearty, and perfect for this cool Autumn day.

Back home, my headache thankfully passed completely and I've finished my baking my cookies. Now I'm back to laundry and just enjoying the quiet autumn all around me. I think Corey and I will have a fire tonight, too!

What Autumn activity have you indulged in yet this season?


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