Alcohol, America, Automobile, Baking, Beer, Car, Christmas, Cookies, Day, Drink, Eve, Family, Fireplace, Food, Friends, Gifts, Holiday, Home, House, Michigan, New York, Ohio, Ornaments, Pasta, Santa, Sleigh, Train, Travel, Tree, Turkey, USA, Victorian, Wine
During the Christmas holiday in 2003 we traveled west to spend time with Julie’s family in Ohio and Michigan. Our boys at the time were young with Michael being 4 1/2 and Max at 18 months. I have such wonderful memories of the holidays spent with family and this was no exception. I cannot believe that these images were taken 12 years ago, how time does fly.
Merry Christmas to you!
The smell of a Christmas turkey wafting through the house stirs us from beneath the mountains of wrapping paper, iPad and computer boxes, clothes and a stack of books a librarian would be proud of. Only reinforcing the greatest of gifts are our families, friends and loved ones we share our day to day lives with.
With that said I would like to wish all who celebrate a Happy Christmas and for those who might not, I raise a glass to our friendship.
America, Asheville, BBQ, Beer, Biltmore, Black Friday, Car, Christmas, Coffee, Family, Food, Friends, Holiday, Hotel, Manhattan, Motel, New York, North Carolina, Shopping, Thanksgiving, Travel, Turkey, USA, USPS, Wine
This Thanksgiving our family decided to unstuff the traditional family bird and venture south in order to visit our friends in North Carolina for the holiday weekend. Three years ago our friends Sharon and John had retired to North Carolina with visions of warmer weather. However cool Canadian air must have followed us down that never ending Interstate 81. Does the State of Virginia ever end?
Leaving New York Tuesday afternoon it had just begun to snow. Sixty miles to the south snow had changed to rain, a steady rain and that would be the recipe for the first 367 miles to Harrisonburg, VA. Our road weary heads rested and we’re once again on the road. Weather was still chilly but the rain had passed making the final 268 miles to Kannapolis, NC easy. We arrived under the warm rays of the sun to much fanfare. We spent the rest of the day relaxing and catching up.
Thanksgiving morning began early for me as I was to meet my friend Kaye-Lani at 0630 in Cornelius, NC for the Lake Norman 10K Turkey Trot. Our goal was to just have fun and not worry whatsoever about time, that is exactly what we did. Kaye-Lani’s husband Andrew was there to cheer us. After the race a cup of Joe was in order at Summit Coffee in the small college town of Davidson. . Parting ways, I returned to celebrate Thanksgiving with Julie, Michael, Max, Sharon and John. The food was delicious and this bird was completely stuffed. After dinner Julie and I ventured out to witness the crazies lined up at Walmart and then we did the unthinkable, we went in! I was totally ashamed as I swore to myself I would never shop on Thanksgiving. Hopefully I learn from my mistake.
Friday again began early as I went for a 7 1/2 mile run and after breakfast we did some black Friday shopping returning to Davidson to meet up with Kaye-Lani, have some coffee, shop and lunch. At this point Julie, myself and the boys ventured west to Asheville in order to check into our hotel. We were scheduled for an 8 O’clock candle light tour that evening of the Biltmore Estate decorated for Christmas. And this my friends is where we cross one item off our preverbal “Bucket List”. The Biltmore Estate of the late “George Washington Vanderbilt” is the largest private home ever built in America. The home opened to family and friends on Christmas Eve 1895. We have dreamt for years to visit Biltmore all decorated for Christmas. You see Julie and I love Christmas, not only for all the traditions, glitz and glamour but for what the spirit of Christmas represents.
Saturday we returned to our friends home in Kannapolis. That evening we were treated to a firework show, some dinner and one heck of a Christmas light display at Charlotte Motor Speedway. Yes we actually had the opportunity to drive on the track. A great way to end a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday.
Sunday morning we were on the road back to New York. Making great time only to come to a screeching halt at the NY/PA border. It took us and hour and a half to go from the border to kamikaze curve with all the Thanksgiving traffic. Twelve hours later we had arrived home safe and sound and I am thankful for that!
May 30th 2013, another leaf has fallen from that mighty oak we call our family tree. My aunt Barbara had lost here battle with cancer. She was a fighter and how could she not be. Having taught special education for thirty three years in one of Long Island’s roughest school districts where even the Police would buy the yearbook in order to have photos of the students.
I’ve always been a positive thinker especially when myself or someone I love faces adversity. In my mind I knew she would beat this horrible disease even when the doctors said she wouldn’t. I have always thought of my aunt as a second mom in some respects, I guess that is why her passing has been especially difficult for me.
As most of you know I love to run and what I discovered about my running is that it provides me with an outlet for a clear mind and a clear perspective. Just last week while out on my long run I could not help but think about that empty seat at the Thanksgiving table this year and I began to cry. Several miles in those tears turned to joy as the positive thinker in me had returned. I realized how fortunate I have been to have the love, support and friendship of my aunt for forty two years, thats right forty two years! Even though that chair at the Thanksgiving table might be empty, however my heart, mind and soul will be seated with her memories forever.
So today is Thanksgiving Day and as we gather to give thanks for the ones we love, our own lives and all the wonderful things we’ve been afforded, I myself am most thankful for a lifetime of memories of not only my aunt but my entire network of family and friends.
10K, 15K, 5K, Airplane, America, Amtrak, Beer, Boston, Boston Marathon, Bus, Chicago, Eat Fresh, Fall, Family, Floasted, Food, Friends, Half Marathon, Halloween, Hungry, Manhattan, New York, New York City Marathon, Running, Subway, Summer, Thanksgiving, Train, Travel, Turkey, Turkey Trot, USA, Wine
Today was a little different for me in my running. This morning I woke up at 0530 and logged 6 1/2 groggy miles at a 7:40 pace before work. After work my partner and I ran a killer 4 1/2 mile run at a 6:58 pace. Now this is where things changed for me a bit. After our run and while I was cooling down I thought “Hey I have time to make it to Confluence Thursday” with the Triple Cities Runners Club. So this hungry guy made a stop for one of his favorite sandwiches, a Subway foot long egg white flatbread with buffalo sauce, tomato, onion and green peppers. It was toasted and not floasted!
Racing down Interstate 81 from Cortland, NY to Binghamton, NY I arrived at Confluence Running with plenty of time to spare. Our Thursday evening runs are 4 miles and tonight I paced it at 7:17. So all in all I had a great 15 mile workout spread over the course of thirteen hours.
I’m feeling a bit tired but more so hungry, time to raid the fridge!