Sunday, May 31, 2009

Memorial Day 2009

Kenzie Jo is a constant source of entertainment.
Jon got a new Wii from Andrea which delighted all the "Kids." I think Sue might have an unfair advantage against her opponent. :)

Elijah, chills as he waits for his turn on the Wii.

Mom and Dad enjoy some time on the swing. The weather was incredible.

Me with my favorite Sister-in-law, Holly. ;)

The whole Grate clan enjoying a wonderful lunch.

We celebrated the birthdays of Emmy, Keever and me!

Happy birthday to us!

Blowing out our candles.

Birthday girls, Emmy and Aunt Kelley

Sisters- Kelley and Andrea

Zeke is such a nut and so strong too!

Awe...there's my sweet boy!

Kenzie got a big kick out of her new toy. It played music and whenever you pushed it, she would crack up laughing. Too cute!

Friday, May 22, 2009

Busy Month

Friends- Jeff, Sue and I went to a Reds game on Thursday. They lost, but it was a BEAUTIFUL day! We rode in Sue's new Mustang convertible with the top down all the way home! Incredible!

This year's patio flowers all all hues of orange, yellow and reds. I LOVE them!

Mother-Daughter Banquet 2009

Andrea and Kelley

Lifetime friends- Kismet and Kelley

Mother's Day dinner at Grandma's!

Mom with her girls!

My "twin" cousin Kim!

Kenzie JoAnn Looking too cute!

planting mom's flowers- No Dad is not flipping you off. The stripe on his shirt looks like it's coming from the middle of his fist!

Love working with my sis!

I believe it's almost been a month since the Mini. My life has been zooming by. I must say, I was a little out of sorts after the race. To be focused on something for that long and then have it completed, is something of a let down. I had to refocus. So, this month we've had Mother's day, flower planting, a trip to Cincinnati with friends, and a new focus on exercise. I've been working hard at the gym and have lost 25lbs since the fall. I have a long way to go, but I'm more focused on my eating and more intense exercise now that I'm not training for the "walk." My goal is to kick another 25-30 before school rolls around again in the fall. The Lord and a good friend are teaching me to be more content with who I am and to enjoy this time of change instead of being impatient that it's taking me so long.

Saturday, May 02, 2009

Mini Marathon pictures

Me and my sis after the race.
The whole crew at the IWU tent after the race.
Kelley and Andrea coming into the home stretch.

Shortly after the starting line

2009 Indianapolis Mini Marathon

This day was so incredible and overwhelming! Today I walked my first mini marathon, 13.1 miles. My friend Missy has a torn miniscus in her knee so had to pull out at the last minute. I was supposed to walk with her and was a little panicked about walking alone. So, I placed a call to my biggest supporter, Andrea. She agreed on Friday morning to become "Missy" for the day. Honest to goodness, I could not have made it without her. Andrea, thank you for being the BEST sister on the planet! I love you!

We were in our corrals at 7:00am just like we were told to be. The starting gun went off at 7:30 and 44 min. later we crossed the starting line. It was crazy. I started off strong and in great spirits. All along the race course, there are local bands playing, people cheering and just general hoopla! It's fun and motivating. At mile 6 you go into the Indy Motor Speedway. Now that is overwhelming! That place is huge. It's 2.5 miles around and it felt every bit that long. During that part of the race, I started to get tired....

Our group of walkers had t-shirts made for the race. The front said "Nothing is impossible" while the back had a scripture; "But those who hope in the Lord will renew their strength; they will soar on wings like eagles, they will run and not grow weary. They will walk and not be faint. Isaiah 40:31

All along the race course, people commented on the shirt. As we were walking the track, I heard a lady behind me talking about my shirt. She then told me that she really liked it. I told her thanks and that I could really use someone in front of me wearing the shirt right now...she said, "Here let me read it to you." She proceeded to read the verse to me. I was a blubbering mess. I needed to hear the words of that verse in a big way. Later around the track, we ended up near her again and this time, she just started reading. She told me that this verse had gotten her through many a race. This was her 18th Mini Marathon. I was in awe. She was in her sixties and had walked this race for the last 18 years. I told her that I was in my first and maybe my last. :)

Well, we made it around the track and completed mile 9 shortly after we left the speedway. About mile 10, I started to get overwhelmed. I had never walked farther than 10 and the thought of 3 more, was hard to take. My feet were hurting and I was tired. Andrea kept me encouraged as did my friend Missy with her text messages. I got choked up several times during the last 3 miles. At one point the encouragement was too much and I started crying...I said "I don't think I can take anymore encouragement" so the ladies next to Andrea started telling me how poorly I was doing. It was hillarious. Made me laugh and kind of broke the tension. Well, before I knew it, Andrea and I were walking the last mile. The mile markers were counting down...3/4....1/2....1/4 and then I could see the finish line...

Before I knew it the whole gang was lined up on either side of the street, cheering me one, snapping pictures, ringing cowbells...I felt like a rock star!!! It was so cool. I have the best friends in my life! I cried like a baby as Andrea and I crossed the finish line together. 3:58:33