Spring Break & ACA

Spring Break

First let’s talk about the AMAZING time I had on spring break last week.

Monday: Went to Ray’s Indoor Mountain Bike Park with Gale and the Cleveland Triathlon Club. At first I was really nervous, but more so embarrassed by Gale telling everyone quite loudly how new and scared we were. In the end I managed to go around newbie room a few times and even TRIED to stay on some of the boards. Feel free to go to the site and see some of the course I was one and other things I’m not realllly ready to try!

Tuesday: Had dinner with Justin at O’Charley’s which was great fun because of the film about their rolls. Please go to the site and look it up…totally worth every moment of watching it. I think the waitress hated us for having too much fun, but I personally didn’t care. Afterward it was off to Toastmasters & then through a strange happening of events I ended back up at Justin’s house.

Wednesday: Off to Atti2udes to see my wonderful stylist Tabitha who does a phenomenal job of making my brown hair blonde without making me look too fake. She also fixes my at home bangs cut and brown waxing. Afterward it was an awesome time with the always gorgeous and cheerful Liz. We chatted about life love and the in between while she enjoyed a green beer and I just enjoyed some food and company. The ladies in the lobby ADORED my shirt and could not believe I had made it!

Thursday: A lower energy level but that’s not to say the company wasn’t on par with every other night. Saw Bobbie and we talked and ate at Friendly’s and had some delicious ice cream. Then we went on a walk/hike in a local park before talking until it was too dark to be at the park. You know ‘cuz we’re clearly the trouble making kind of people. I learned her boyfriend is a Mason, which is cool since Justin is becoming one and it makes me want to tease him less that people our age are in it.

Friday: I did not work, I parked frantically for the weekend and managed to get to Cranberry PA right in time for lunch. I ate at Kings (which I have ALWAYS wanted to) with two of our technicians and it was truly interesting to meet them. Next I made it the rest of the way to ACA in Pittsburgh and the fun and non-stop action started.

**side note** as I write this my dog is sitting inside my gym bag, she’s on some clothes and her head is peeking through the flap and it’s much too cute.

Friday night is basically get settled night. I gathered my stuff and went to the Expo. I was excited to see SAMHSA but the give-a-ways were not like last year. I DID get a new stress toy! NIDA was not there at all! Nor any places to try and think about a job some day. I walked around there for bit, bought like 150 dollars worth of books (haha). Bought a book for my Mom called “Mom can I move in with you? A guide to living with your 20-something” or something like that. At first it was just meant to be funny, but I think it might be a good read. I also bought a little something for Justin and in case he actually decides to read this for once…I won’t mention what it was. I will after I give it to him….if I ever see him again…ignore the bitterness. After the Expo I felt weird going to the room by myself so I did call and talk to Mr P (Justin…I call him Mr P at work since we have a Justin in our dept) for a while. He told me he had fed my chickens and fertilized my crops (Farmville) and I laughed to myself and thought oh great we’re THAT couple. Then I met up with the John Carroll roomies (here is a candid of them from the conference, are they not all soooo pretty?)

roomies

We got ready and when to this place called The Church. Check out the site. It’s this amazing old building/church they converted to a brewery. I can NOT put into words how breath-taking the inside of this place is. Stained glass, wood carvings, it’s incredible! Go to the site just to see the pics of what this place looks like. Some people took pics of us up on the alter, so maybe those will get posted if I get a copy. Oh “awe” moment of the night? When I was leaving the room and my phone went off and it was a msg saying “You’re special, don’t forget that. Have fun with your friends” A room full of “awwww he’s a keeper” yeah I guess it IS nice to get sweet msgs and it isn’t because you just had a fight. Too bad all of them are married to lawyers. If I was married to a lawyer he wouldn’t need to be sweet he would just need to give me $$. Kidding. Kidding. Oh at one point Keelan was asking the waitress how we order pizza or sandwiches and I kid you not she replied “Oh that’s a different menu. You have to ask for that menu” So Keelan ever so calmly looks at her and says “Well….can we have THAT menu?” I thought I would explode from potential laughter. Mind you this is AFTER the very long wait and AFTER the table of like 20 orders. On the way back I hear this funny story about how one of the girls said a building they drove past was the “Pittsburg H Opera” and the other girl was like “OMG Pittsburgh is spelled with an H”!! Later we were all going to sleep and one of the girls had the TV on…I am seriously half asleep and I hear the key words “you normally only see these at Toys R Us or the Zoo” instantly I’m sitting up wide awake with glasses going “OMG a giraffe’s on TV!” I watch about 4 minutes of a giraffe on Jimmy Kimble and proceed to lay down and go right back to sleep. I AM A FREAK.

Saturday:

I won’t go into too many details about what I learned. I went to several presentations on multiculturalism and feminism as well as AOD. I am proud to say I am growing as a person. ( ; The main speaker of the day was Patti Digh (die) who has the blog 37 Days and wrote the book Life is a Verb.

lifeisaverb

She was beyond words amazing. I laughed, I cried, I was not the same girl at the end. I flew to the bookstore (downstairs) for her book signing afterward and grabbed up the book to wait in line like 40 minutes to have her sign it. I don’t want to ruin anything or tell you what to think for yourself but she speaks about having 37 days to live and what would you do to a live a life more fully? Would you approach business meetings with the same excitement a child sees in a bus? Would you stop saying “no” and start saying “yes” would you live by silly “toast rules”. I want to be a better person from listening to her story. I want to stop living each day like it’s leading up to something “better” and start appreciating what I have because “better” might not happen and my life isn’t in such need of “betterment” when I embrace what I have. One thing we did was “yes but” versus “yes and”. When we yes but we make it hard for others to communicate with us and we put things down. When we use yes and we are open to new ideas and are able to do more and feel more. I tried it Monday at the orthodontists when I forgot my umbrella. I wanted to think negatively about not wanting to get wet “It’s raining! But I don’t have a coat or umbrella” so I stopped and thought “It’s raining…and I won’t die from a little rain” and ran off into the drizzle and through the parking lot with a smile. Oh BTW new silver bands and 3 teeth are being tightened….6 weeks down.

Another thing I thought about is how I use my “yes buts” to walk away from potential love. “He likes me…but I’m too busy” He likes me but…he didn’t do or say something PERFECT” He likes me but…..and I decided to try and not be this way with love. Instead how about “He likes me…and I like him…and things could be great….and things could not work….and if so I will have had some wonderful memories in the in-between”

The rest of the sessions were nice and then we had the different socials. I went to IAAOC where they had steak wraps which are NOT braces friendly food and pop which I do not care for and some lady accidently dumped her pop all over my foot. She wouldn’t turn my way when I was trying to get her attention and I was like “Hey, in case you get thirsty later and don’t know where your drink went, it’s on the floor and my feet”. Grrr. Texted with Mr P a lil after that and then off to the main welcome hour where not much was happening. SO I met up with the Akron girls for dinner…I didn’t eat. Due to a misunderstanding of where I was I ended up lost and alone in the dark in downtown Pitts which I will never do again! I was soooo scared! Haha. Dinner was nice, but waiting for the bus so they could go to the party and I could go home was terrible….cuz I was SO TIRED. Luckily the roomies were up and made me smile, random midnight roll call was to die for.

Here is pic of me totally rocking my suit

head suit

Sunday:

Sunday was another fun day of sessions…and getting up ASS early to pack and check out. Bleh. Next year in New Orleans I am not attending every session under the sun, I will go out and live it up. It’s been 10 years since I was there and I LOVE that city!! Better start running damaged control in advance! Ha. Yeah so for lunch I chatted with Jess and Leah about potential dos and don’t for working and some girl also from our area was there and telling us about the national exam and tips for getting used to working. I was so tired the rest of the sessions, I was dying in the last one. Although one of the Sunday sessions was pretty much the exact thing Julie and I presented on last week, where the professor HATED it, I felt and said it would never work. Well it works! So suck it! Very mature I know.

At the end of the day all I wanted was to GTFO out that city and into my bed. However Joe told me I HAD to eat at Primanti Brothers, so I walked around for like 40 minutes trying to find them. Finally did and had a bologna sandwich and it was SO WORTH the walk! Then home again home again.

Here is a pic of me (in the bathroom….seriously) being….tired? bored?annoyed? awesome?

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This week was trying to not to die of allergies, getting Tami trained on work, book club (it was awesomesauce) classes again (boo) and date night with Tom (boom chicka wow wow) he’s my life partner and I have a new dress to break in!

Oh wait this IS a running & etc blog! Well kids Sat is a 5K and Sunday is an indoor Tri so get ready for that!

I owe updates//Millcreek 1/2 & St Malachi 5mi

Sorry I have not been presenting the upmost in entertainment as of late. I will give you a quick recap of the last two weekends, as I am out of town this weekend. This is being written in the hotel of the Hampton Inn in Pitts where I am gracing the ACA convention with my lovely self. What have I been doing lately? Well…

I gave two group presentations in school. One on the STAXI for Objective Personality and another on group counseling for college students with alcohol abuse issues. I also took a midterm and created an annotated bibilography for a paper on Sexual Addiction: Fact and Fiction. Believe me when I say I’ve been busy! Two weekends ago I went to Gale and Shawn to Millcreek in Youngstown for the first half marathon of the year. Last weekend we all went to Cleveland for the St Malachi 5 mile run. The season is getting warmer and running is starting to be fun again. Also…remember the “some boy” from debate? He’s been in the picture here and there too and I think I’m gonna keep him around for a while…perhaps he’ll end up being more than “some boy” hehe, he already is ( ; he sent me flowers. I’ve never been sent flowers before and I LOVED it!

Ok here are the choppy updates of weeks past…I will try to get with the program in the future.

(written last week actually)…ROJ has been lousy with updates lately…but that is strongly because I HATE running in icky weather and I tapped myself dry of treadmill fun last fall training for my marathon. I made a vow this year to run for the JOY of running, not for the purpose of some preset goal. And so far it’s been OK. So…what have I been doing aside from working and learning? I did manage to go to Mill Creek this past weekend for my third half marathon on what I was told is the hilliest course in America. Whatever. Here is a link to the page and a map of the hills. I tried to use Garmin but as the story will tell you….it wasn’t a good weekend exactly.

In a way things started when I went out Friday night to my friend’s house…Tom. His sister and her husband were in from DC with the new puppy. New puppy = love and fluff. I managed to stay there with several of my friends all night long. Good times. People think Tom and I should get married because no one else will put up with us the way we do for each other…we could cheat on each other and all that other fun stuff too! haha. Another odd thing was talking on the phone to an ex…ex friend and ex manager from my days at McD’s. He seems to be doing well and that’s always good to hear. Sat morning I was soooooo tired! I felt like I was going to die. I walked around in a haze trying to get ready to get to Gales. At various points in the morning I couldn’t find….my pants…my glasses…my contacts…my running shoes…who knows what else. It literally took HOURS to pack for basically one night.

I managed to get to Gale’s before Shawn which is some sort of miracle in and of itself. We went on our way over to Y-town and to explore the city lol. We arrived in great time and got all of our stuff. They were giving out wind shirt and I got one in the right size and in this very lovely red. See below. Gale got one in Navy and Shawn also got red…they seemed to be cleaning out the leftovers of other years. They also had white, but lord knows that would not be a good idea for me! I bought a breakfast cookie and some beans…well Shawn bought them for me cuz he’s awesome…and I tried on a running dress, which I liked, but did not buy. Then off to lunch at Golden Corral. YUM YUM YUM> No joke. I MAKE money at that place. Both laughed at me because I was stealing sweet potatoes. I dunno it’s a tradition. I couldn’t eat everything there but what I ate was amazing. I also drank the weird milk rice thing and I liked it! At one point I thought I was going to make Shawn laugh so hard he would spit out his drink on me. It did not happen but would have been totally worth it! Of course I also got fat on the treats. Ohhh what an experience.

After this was went and drove all around PA while Shawn spent like 300.00 on beer. No joke. You should see the pic he posted with his cases…actually here it is!

The one beer store we went to was HUGE I mean I have not seen some stores this size, let alone stores just for beer. Crazy! Sat night was spent chilling at the hotel room and swimming. I felt like I was getting sick because I was SO COLD. Even in the hot tub where everyone else was hot I was feeling chilly. Also I was emotionally distressed over the mess I had caused with different people in my personal life…but that has come to pass so moving on…We did eat pizza for dinner which was yum. I also got to text about 3 or 4 good friends so I felt loved. Funny thing…around like 11 our phone rang and then the door was being knocked on. It was the pizza place! WTF we ate our pizza at like 9!! GO AWAY WE ARE SLEEPING.

Sunday morning was the actual race. We spent plenty of time getting ready and when we arrived we were more than awake. I spilled my drink on me. Found out my Garmin was dead. And my ipod!!!! Gale had a spare ipod so I was set for the music but grr. Oh and when I was being all sweet and jumped out of the truck I hurt my ankle. Oh and NOT MY FAULT but I was listed as a male. I don’t have a penis! Seriously. Yea so the run started and I was like OH BOY and when I got to the mile two I could have gone left to run just a 5k but I went right and up the hill and committed to 13.1 miles. I found a slower groove and made it happily to around mile 8. Even with a spot where I felt I could do anything and was really happy! Then I stopped to go potty and for whatever reason it made me realize how badly my ankle hurt and my knee. So I walked the last 5 miles…which took a lonnnng time. But everyone kept being really supportive and I was enjoying the weather…and the time to think about many things in life. I finished in just over 3 hours. Oh well. But I finished!! They didn’t do medals for all which sucked, but I was happy to push myself and see what I was capable of doing. It’s really made me feel like me again and I haven’t been all “bleh” and woe is me this whole week!

So nothing great planned this weekend other than Malachi on Sat for a fun 5 miles. Hope everyone else is doing well and enjoying the nice weather if you’re in Ohio with me!

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St Malachi update

I won’t go into too many details since this is longer than normal anyhow. Basically the race was at 9:45 but parking was not good so I arrived at like 7:30. I felt like crap and my head hurt. Gale gave me my stuff and I slept for about another hour I’d say before getting out of my car and into the rain. The music they were playing really lifted my spirits and I saw some friends as always. The two mile people looked like they had fun and Gale even ran the 2 miler! I had a goal of doing under an hour…esp after how poorly Mill creek went. I finished in 57 mins and was happy to report only walked on some of the hills. Very slow pacing but at least I stayed in motion and was having a good time. Afterward I took a nap (ha) and finished my St Patty’s day shirt. Her I am with Emme and also a more “full” pic of the completed shirt. Hope you all had a great holiday and week. I’ll write about ACA next. Then it’s back to races!