One memorable trip at a time!

Hi, friends!
I apologize for the delay in this post, but it turns out that if you play hooky from work for a week and a half, you come home to mounds of catch-up work!
A few weeks ago, I drive down to Milwaukee to check out the venues of my two MKE wedding couples: Erika and Chad, and Jen and Josh.

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I also stopped by at the Southeastern Wisconsin Trout Unlimited meeting to visit my friends.

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I stayed near the MKE airport, and left my car there for the park and fly. Eleven day trip with shooting, running, and fishing? My suitcase weighed 48 pounds. 🙂
My first evening in DC, I worked with Graham Breedlove to do some promotional photos in Georgetown. Take a peek at a few of my favorites!

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We went to dinner at a place called Tackle Box, and finished up with some Georgetown Cupcake. Yum!

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Thanks for the fun, Graham (and family!) I stayed at their beautiful home in Arlington, then picked up my rental car for day number two of fun- driving to Maryland to see Megan and Bobby!

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We walked all around Frederick taking in the sights…

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…drinking coffee…

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…eating good food…

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…and enjoying our friendship!

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Both my friends had to work on Friday, so I went to Baltimore to explore Inner Harbor.

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I was walking by the water, enjoying the sights and the ocean-y air, and guess who ran past me?

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Matt! What an awesome surprise. He was in Baltimore for a conference, and just happened to be out running while I was strolling. How cool!
It was more humid out there in Maryland. I was curly.

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On Saturday, M & B took me to Capitol Hill to visit the famous The Sweet Lobby. If you know me in person, or have been reading for a while, you know that I LOVE fancy cupcakes. This place was amazing.

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We took the scenic route home…

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…then headed to the expo to pick up our race gear. The first (and main!) reason that I took this trip was to run with Megan on her very first half marathon! I chose a fun option called the Nut Job. It is a series of two races, twelve hours apart. A quick, hilly 5K on Saturday night, and a long hilly half marathon on Sunday morning.
Saturday’s 5K was basically 1.5 miles downhill, then the turn around, and 1.5 miles back up that darn hill. It made me wish I had trained on some hills. Whoops. Those Maryland people take their hills seriously! Turns out, West Virginians do, too. More on that later.
Before the 5K:

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During the 5K:

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And after the 5K.

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It was much warmer weather than I had been used to, but sweating felt good. 🙂
Also noteworthy: they provided us with men’s nuts post-race. Ha. My time was 29:18. In my mind, that was a great warmup run for the next day’s half.

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I took the world’s fastest shower, then we ran over to Bobby’s sister’s house for dinner with Bobby’s family. Of course, I was so distracted by the most delicious paleo dinner ever, that I didn’t take any photos of the family or the food. Wonderful burgers, sweet potato fries, sautéed summer squash, and all sorts of other delicious stuff. I did, however, snap a photo of this gem: salted caramel.

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We didn’t stay too late, and headed back for a full evening of resting and relaxing. Basically, I fell asleep as soon as we arrived back at M & B’s apartment. 🙂
Sunday morning arrived with excitement! One of my favorite things about running with “new” runners is that I love sharing in the excitement of their first race, or new PDR, or first medal! My pre-race breakfast was pretty standard- Greek yogurt and berries.

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Bobby was an excellent chauffeur for the morning- he got a parking spot very close to the start/finish, so we could all stay together. There was a hot air balloon near the start- what a cool way to begin a race morning 🙂

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The course was beautiful with some hills and gorgeous scenery! I even recognized some areas from my days exploring downtown!

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This guy was holding a sign- “Offical Race Liar.”

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He was probably around mile 7 or 8, on a long uphill. Here are some of the things that came out of his megaphone…
-“It’s all downhill from here!”
-“You’re almost done!”
-“Finally! Someone who looks great in spandex!”
Hilarious. That guy was great.

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THAT’S a giant sign.
They had military men and women giving us our medals at the end. How cool!

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I came in relaxed with a time of 2:13:12, then looped back to cheer for Megan. While I was waiting for her to come through the last half mile, I saw an incredibly inspirational man in a wheelchair. He was struggling to make it up the gravel incline to the track. He didn’t want help from anyone, so all the runners around him started cheering and encouraging even louder than normal. When he finally made it up the incline, I cried happy tears for him.
Megan came through the chute not long after my wheelchair guy, and I shouted my little buns off. And cried some more. And I’m crying writing this. Gosh, runners are inspirational!! Love you, Megan.

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We headed back to M & B’s place for brunch with their families. I took a shower and got changed for mass, then we all ate. Of course, I forgot to take photos of this family. Jeez. I was distracted by the dinosaur eggs they were feeding me! Don’t know what they are? Check it out.
We went to mass at a church that is 250 years old! Well, not the building, but the group of people that have been going. The church is beautiful!

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And we followed up mass with Rita’s. Being a Midwestern girl, I didn’t know what this chain is all about. Turns out, it’s about mixing delicious fresh Italian ice with creamy custard. Yum!

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After that awesome day, I packed up my stuff and got ready to head to West Virginia.
One trip at a time, folks! Stay tuned for fishing in WV, working up in Pembine, and a wedding in Arizona. 🙂

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