2019 Year in Review

Tuesday, December 31, 2019


A year of happiness and sorrow.

We started the year with a visit from Eric’s sister, Carrie, and some her kids. It was nice to meet Sofia, the newest baby in the family.

Our first traveling race of the year was the Love Run Half Marathon in Philadelphia in March. We enjoyed a weekend touring all the historically sights.

May and June were very busy. We traveled almost 10,000 miles and a lot of that was in the car. We started with driving to Missoula, MT for Allista’s wedding. Allista was our flower girl and she asked Kim to be her flower girl. It was a fun weekend. 

A couple weeks later we ventured back out to Rapid City for Juanita’s graduation. While out there we had a cold, snowy hike up part way to Black Elk Peak and a hot sunny hike to the top of Bear Butte (consecutive days). We also did quite a bit of touristy things like Reptile Gardens (twice) and Bear Country, USA.

Two weeks after that we drove out to the Hatfield and McCoy Race on the Kentucky/West Virginia border. Eric had to work in Texas during the week, so Kim picked up her mom and drove to Cincinnati to pick up Phil and Eric at the airport and then on to the race. It was a fun race with moonshine, shotguns and some feudin’ history.

Shortly after driving back from Kentucky, we flew out to Oregon for Katelynn’s graduation from the University of Oregon. We had a great weekend enjoying family and the beach.

In July we travelled to Milwaukee to run the Race to Cure Sarcoma-Milwaukee 5K. Our team, Chasing the Ice Cream Truck for Dylan, did very well fundraising. Kim’s nephew, Dylan was diagnosed with Rhabdomyosarcoma, a rare cancer that forms in the soft tissue. This is a children’s cancer and as a result he was treated at the Milwaukee’s Children’s Hospital. He fought hard for 6 months but sadly he passed away in August. Kim was honored to give one of the eulogies at his funeral. It was a tough summer and now especially with what would have been his 30th birthday in November and the holiday season. 

We went to Cleveland for a quick weekend in August for the Rock Hall of Fame Half Marathon. It was a very hot race, but we enjoyed touring Cleveland. 

For our 16th anniversary we took a trip to Boston and the New England States. Because of timing, we had to go in early September. We started the trip in Connecticut where we ran a half marathon on Labor Day. During the week we toured around Boston and saw the Twins play the Red Sox at Fenway Park. It was a very cool experience. We spent a day on Cape Cod before ending up in Vermont for our second half marathon of the trip. We finished up the trip with hiking to waterfalls in New Hampshire. 

We went to Sioux Falls in October to surprise Byron for his birthday and to run a trail race. It was a fun weekend. He was really surprised!

In November, we ran Madison Marathon to get our 3rd medal in the 4-year series. We picked up Kim’s Mom and Aunt Betty Jane so they could see family. It was great seeing family. 

Our last race of the year was the Gulf Coast Half Marathon in Biloxi, Mississippi (State #25).
Phil joined us for this race too. 

Swirl is doing good. He turned 16 this year! He had dental surgery and an Echocardiogram done to check on his heart murmur. Dylan always called him the little heart patient. He is fine, but what was an expensive cat! 

Love, Eric, Kim and Swirl

Lauritzen Gardens

Friday, December 27, 2019

My birthday morning started out with donuts from Hy-vee. We (Eric, Bonnie, Michael and Juliette) went to lunch at a great French restaurant near downtown Omaha. After that we went to the Lauritzen Gardens. It was very beautiful. I need to come back in the summer to see the outside gardens!  After the gardens we went to Starbucks for my free drink, did some shopping and had dinner at Cheesecake Factory. It was a fun eventful day. :)














Mississippi Gulf Coast Half Marathon

Friday, December 20, 2019

My best half of 2019!!!

This was an awesome race. The weather was perfect. The logistics were great. The course was flat...almost too flat. The view was beautiful. There were tons of water stops. The only con was not a lot of crowd support.

I was under a 3 hour pace for the first 11 miles. I fell apart during mile 12...with the only hill on the course, a freaking overpass!  My official time is 3:07:28.

Sunrise at the Start



The view for the first 10 miles
The view before the overpass bridge...hill.






Relaxing on the grass outfield



Mississippi shaped medal
Phil survived 26.2...again.
 

Biloxi Shucker Stadium (Brewer's affiliate)
My new visor!




Holiday Lights...Beach style

Monday, December 16, 2019

Gulfport, MS had a holiday festival in the park. We started our half marathon right in front of the place so we could see they had a lot of lights in the park. I was disappointed we had to pay $10 each to get in (I'm used to them being freewill offering). The light display was cool but La Crosse and Mankato displays are better. I got a kick out of the beach theme. Lobsters, crabs, octopus, and Santa's sleigh was pulled by seahorses??? So weird!
















Gator Ranch and Airboat Tour

Sunday, December 15, 2019

After the Gulf Coast Half Marathon we decided to go for a ride to Alabama. I was bored in the car so I looked up things to do around the area and this Gator Ranch and Airboat tour place popped up. Phil immediately said lets do that. Luckily we got on the last tour of the day. We got to see some alligators in the wild and a quite a few in their closed off area. I got to hold a baby alligator. It was very cool!