Friday, March 29, 2013

Wild About You!

Disclaimer: March has been crazy busy so I am a little behind on blogging so prepare for blog overload the next few days! 

On March 13, 2013 Kipper and I celebrated our 9th wedding anniversary! While most people go to romantic dinners or a romantic getaway to celebrate their anniversaries, not us. Since our anniversary was on a Wednesday we decided we would just celebrate over the weekend. You should see the crazy looks people give you when you tell them you are just going to the gym to run when they ask you what you are going for you anniversary night! lol. And that look didn't go away when you told them you were celebrating on Saturday with a trip to Fossil Rim and Dinosaur Valley State Park. (I am really not sure why any of this surprises people...when have we ever done things the normal way?) What better way to celebrate how "wildly" in love we are?? :)

Of course Mr. Martin had to go and plan a surprise night out on Friday with dinner at Grace and then to see Oz The Great and Powerful in 3D!  (Major princess points for him!)  Because I had been at camp all day and we didn't want to be rushed we decided to hold off on eating at Grace and just have dinner at the Movie Tavern. It was magical! Even at 31 years old the wonder of all things Oz captivates my heart as much as it did when I was a little girl. The perfect night to kick off our weekend!

The next morning we headed to Glen Rose for our day of fun!

Starting with Fossil Rim!  I hadn't been here since I was a little girl and I was super excited. I also had a very specific goal that we would have a giraffe stick its head in the sun roof...or a window.  With our $8 bag of feed in hand we were off to meet some animals! And of course I kept tracking of the random things that came out of our mouths thought out the day! :)

What I had thought about was the fact it was the tail end of Spring Break and it seemed we weren't the only ones with this fabulous idea! There was actually traffic jams and at one point we sat for over 30 minutes barely moving. At first I was a little frustrated about that but we did get to see some stuff we would have other wise missed if we wouldn't have been forced to stop.

At one point we watch an entire herd of Circle Butt Deer (I can't remember what they are really called and they had a big white circle on their butts) come out of the woods into the field and cross the road right in front of us to another field. This process took like 20 minutes, during which time I kept talking to them and after the finally crossed, I gleefully announced that "I'm a deer whisperer!" Kipper just thinks I am crazy...I think he is just jealous!

A little later on we came up to another little traffic jam that was being caused by small group of animals. I was so worried that they would be full and leave before we got to them. Kipper reassured me I would get to see them because on of the was, and I quote, "Is like a homeless guy, just going car to car", end quote. This little guy knew how to work the system!

We stopped for lunch at the half way point cafe which is on top of a hill and has a gorgeous view. Because the park was so busy it took twice as long to reach the half way point as we expected...needless to say we were hungry and ready to stretch our legs!

After lunch we headed back down the hill to see the second half of the park. As you remember I came to the park with the specific goal of a giraffe sticking its head in the car. Well that didn't happen, but this little guy came to see us!!

If you have never been to Fossil Rim, you need to go! We had the best time looking for animals, feeding them and just visiting with each other. I can't wait to go back on a day that isn't so crowded!!

Since it took us twice as long to go through the park, we decided we would save Dinosaur Valley State Park for another trip when we could spend more time there. Instead we headed into Downtown Glen Rose to check out the historic square. The highlight was Pie Peddlers!  You know I am a sucker for a good cupcake,  but I am not a big pie person...Kipper is really the pie lover in our family. After a trip to the Pie Peddlers, pie moved up on my desert scale! :)

Since we had planned to spend the afternoon hiking (hey, I even packed snacks in my backpack!!) I was a little bummed we decided to change our plans. But on our way out of town we passed the coolest little road side park and we had to stop - Big Rocks Park! Seriously this place was SCREAMING my name!!

While this might surprise some people, I LOVE climbing on rocks. Not to be confused with rock climbing (that I don't like very much) just climbing around on big rocks!

These rocks have some HUGE gaps in between them that made me a little nervous. Kipper and I kept watching some teenagers making the leaps like it was nothing. And then there was the little kids doing it barefoot, without a care in the world. I was wearing my running shoes and I had been sliding on the rocks quite a bit so trying to make some of those jumps terrified me even more than they normally would. Seriously, we are talking cracked skulls and broken bones if you didn't make it kind of jumps. That put a halt on my adventurous side pretty fast and you would figure it would have done the same for Mr. Martin. Wrong!

All of sudden my overly protective husband (with a bum knee to boot) decides he too can make the jumps as easily as all the teenagers and kids we have been watching! I am pretty sure I almost threw up at least 6 times as I prayed he didn't fall...and thankfully he didn't!

As much as he scared me, I loved watching the pure joy on his face each time he made it to a new rock. I would have never imagined us being able to do something like this together (and both of us enjoying it) 2 - 2 1/2 years ago!  I honestly couldn't imagine a better way to celebrate our 9th anniversary together! Here is to another great year with my best friend and soul mate! I love you Mr. Martin! 

Thursday, March 7, 2013

To The Finish Line And Back

It is hard to believe that it has almost been 2 weeks since I crossed the finish line at Cowtown. I am sort of shocked I didn't come home that night and blog about it right then and there, but I needed a few days for it to soak in. And at that point I was knee deep is Spring Show Hell Week.

So here we are. I am not even sure I can even put into words how incredible that day was, but it was incredible. Was I the fastest person? Heck no! Was I even close? That's a negative ghost writer! But I didn't care. I fought through my nerves and the games my mind tried to play on me. And I won!!

Much of the experience is sort of a blur, but there are 4 moments that are so vivid in my memory that I will never forget and I have been waiting to share them!

  1. It had been only been a few minutes since we crossed the start line and turned onto Lancaster. As I crossed over University I could see the sea of people in front of me and all of a sudden I began to tear up a bit because it all became real - I was actually running a half marathon!
  2. Right before mile 9 my mind started to play games with me. For about 1/2 a miles I started to believe I couldn't do it and I was ready to give up. Then stapled to a phone pole was a bright hot pink sign that said "You've Got This!" All I could think about was Lala and how she never gave up, even when all odds where against her. Some may call that sign a mere coincidence, I call it a sign from my guardian angel. 
  3. I really wanted to finish side by side with Kipper but once we were about 12.5 into it, I was spent and just couldn't keep up. I put on my favorite Chris Tomlin song, Our God is Greater, and said a little prayer that he carry me to the finish line. Then right before the last turn I see AJ standing on the corner cheering us on. I was dying and asked for her water. As I took a drink she started running along side me, cheering me on. Once the finish line was in sight I told her, "Don't cross the finish line again, they will disqualify your time."  Without missing a beat she replied, "I don't care, let's finish this thing!" I couldn't have ever finished without that encouragement. 
  4. Kipper crossed the finish line just 30 seconds before me and I couldn't help but smile with pride watching him. But the moment I will never forget it how it felt as I crossed the finish line and was able to run right into his arms. As I crossed the finish line the water works turned on. I can't begin to describe how amazing that moment was! Thank goodness T was there and caught it all on her camera!! 

None of this would have been possible without the support of my family and friends! You all have no idea the impact your support had one me, from training, to what felt like a million phone calls/texts/fb messages the day before, right up to being there on the big day. Taking the challenge with a team of 5 sure helped too because I knew I wasn't alone out there! Knowing I was going to see Momma and Ms. G in the Stockyards got me through the first 6 miles and knowing that my amazing friends would be at the finish sure made climbing the hill into downtown a lot easier.  But the biggest thing I can say about the entire experience is: "If you want to strengthen your relationship and faith in God - start training for a half marathon!" 

To end, I have to once again thank Kipper for inspiring me to ever lace up my running shoes in the first place. Hard to believe a year ago we couldn't run a 1/2 mile and now we are half marathon finishers! I love you to the finish line and back Mr. Martin! Here is to many more racing adventures together!!