Sunday, June 19, 2016

Stoutness in the ATL & The Hotlanta Half Race Recap

She was here! She came back! It’s been far too long, but Stoutness returned to the ATL. It was a 6.5 hour drive that we made every few months back in the day, either myself to Cincinnati or her to Atlanta, and then…kids.
Yea, we both had a couple of ’em. They are wonderful, adorable, and sweet, but they sure do monopolize your time!
Enter getting back into shape. Enter running.
It’s something that has helped us stay in touch. We’ve trained for races and cheered each other on through the interwebs, but never have done a half together. We set our sights on The Hotlanta Half.
“It’s in June now, much easier than when Dave did it the first time in August 2014. Where he proceeded to run off the Marta train and puke everywhere! It can’t be THAT bad…” I said to convince her.
So we trained. I was really into Orange Theory this time around, so my short distances were fast, but man did I find that my long runs were SLOW.  Of course the heat and humidity were a lot more severe that my fall races (I PR’d the Jeff Galloway half). I did however, feel fabulous. Man did Orange Theory do wonders on my body image.
Race weekend finally came, and so did the heat. We’d had some quality weather building up to the race, but in true Atlanta fashion, this one was going to be a scorcher.
Friday night we had a bit too much fun.
Probably not my smartest idea, since I had a tennis match in the morning. I played horribly. Many apologies to my partner. Stoutness brought her sketch book though and got a good shot of me at the net with her creation.

We headed back to my hood for an afternoon outside and a quality dinner. Chicken Tacos for all!
We forced ourselves to bed early, but not before laying out everything for the next day. The plan was to wake up with enough time for coffee and a quick breakfast. We didn’t want to drive over, but take Marta instead. Dave and the gals planned on heading out at the same time to cheer us on by Turner Field.
When we woke, we were on time, ready to roll, but the coffee did not do the trick for me. No worries, I thought, I can hit a port-a-potty at the race start.
We passed a public restroom with a smallish line. We got into it, but we decided, hey let’s just get closer to the start and find the port-a-potty setup. As we saw people coming the opposite way to go to this restroom, we should have caught on. There were NO port-a-potties.
They weren’t delivered.
Look at Katie. She’s so smug. Her coffee did the trick before we left home. She’s a jerk.
So we waited in line a mile long for another public restroom near the Coke Museum, which ended up being the line for the Men’s room. The race at this point had already begun. We then heard rumblings that there were port-a-potties on the course.
Fuck it. Let’s go run.
When we ran through the start we were by ourselves, yet there was a steady stream of bathroom hopefuls behind us. Two miles in, HUZZAH, we got our bathroom break. It took forever, because this line was also a mile long. Thankfully, going into it, Katie and I had both determined this would not be a race for time. We were going to run it together and not drop each other, just simply have fun.
So here we are, mile two and I finally feel like a human again. Time to RUN! We wove our way around downtown towards Turner Field. We saw some cute cheerleaders (aka Dave and the gals) on Memorial, briefly said “hi” and made the loop back to see them again. Throwing care to the wind, because hey, our time was already shot with the bathroom break, we grabbed a quick photo.
We kept on rolling.
The hills kicked our asses.
Playing tennis the day before wrecked my feet a bit and I had to stop and re-tie them twice.
Hydration was fab.
We slogged along, but could still chat and have fun.
We took unflattering race photos.
We finished!
And in true BFF Fashion we celebrated!
The weekend was fabulous and I can’t wait to do it again. The plan is that I will run a full Marathon with this lady in the fall!

Monday, January 11, 2016

The Great Toy Takeover

When we lived in the one bedroom loft in Cabbagetown, we tried our best to live simply. Simply, because there was just no place to put any added junk. We then built to a, too big for us, 5 bedroom house in the burbs that shot that all to pieces. 
In this new home, I found places to hide things. Shoot! The place had closets, doors, walls! What is this magic? Of course things started to pile up. Toys included. The gals even had a dedicated playroom, that although it stayed tidy by the end of the day, there was ZERO organization. Every little thing was thrown into storage containers in any sort of fashion, as long as it was off the floor.
We then hit a wall with this burbs home. The house itself was wonderful, but the neighborhood all wrong. It wasn’t for us. We had to move back Intown.
We were able to sell quickly, having the house on the market for only a day, when we got the offer we wanted. Our hunt focused us in the affordable neighborhood of East Atlanta. We we found an adorable (read also: tiny) bungalow. Right then and there, we knew the stuff had to go. Some of the furniture went to my parent’s house. We sold a lot to our neighbors, donated even more, and the rest went to the curb.
I was so proud of the amount of stuff we were able to get rid of. We were ready to move into our tiny house now…right?
Nope. We still had SO much stuff. Over the past several months we’ve basically just moved it around, trying to find homes for all the things. This is the year though, my resolution, to get organized. If it’s staying in the home, it’s filed neatly with correlating objects. If it’s not needed, then goodbye. It will have happier home somewhere else.
I’ve been toying with the idea of getting the gals’ bunkbeds. To give them more space, for you guessed it, their stuff. We no longer have a playroom, so this is their area for play, just as much as it is for sleeping. And although I haven’t entirely put this idea out of my mind, I knew the room needed to be gutted of stuff first before we even went down that path. We needed to make it work with what we currently had, before we spent more money on a bunkbed.
So this past weekend, I blitzed the room, and rearranged it, so they had more floor space to play.

So of course my living room now looked like this…

I made myself go through every toy. A task that is not so easy to do with two 3 year olds hovering over you, wanting to play with the toys that you are trying to organize.
I started with piles.
Pile 1 – trash.
Pile 2 – donate.
Pile 3 – toys to store for rotation.
Pile 4 – sorted toys for bagging & placement.
Toy rotation is something I’ve always said I would do. But honestly it’s something I never really got around to. I placed the still loved, but less used toys in bins, that will be rotated out again in the next 3 months. It is with the hope that the girls will see these toys that were away for awhile, as if they were a brand new toy, thus find interest in them again. If that’s not the case, they will be sold or donated. See ya later dolls. Ninja turtles and Paw Patrol rule this roost at the moment.

The end result was glorious and just as I had imagined. I was just finishing up the separating and bagging, when the gals woke from their nap. They requested to play with the animals and vet hospital. They took them into their newly spotless room and began to play with such vivid imaginations. When that lost their favor they came back to me. We put the animals away, and the Magnaformers came out. Wash, Rise, Repeat.
It made me feel really accomplished. I have already begun to plan which spots of the house I want to hit next. Grand Dad’s old desk…i’m looking at you!

We’re off to a good start 2016.

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