My ‘Murica Weekend


This will be a short entry, mainly because I have no race to report or running for that matter. After three tough weeks of running and racing, I decided to rest my weary legs this past week. So that’s what I did.

I worked out a couple times and I walked quite a bit, but no running. I am going to run a couple two milers this week before my two races this upcoming Saturday. I am sweeping the Hobbler Half in the morning and then running The Dam 15 Miler in the evening. That right there is 28.1 miles of running, which means I’ll get about 32ish miles in during the week.

Lots and lots and lots of running.

But, I need to crank out these races so I can then get race #100 on the 24th of July which will be my 4th anniversary of running my first half marathon. I am not too worried about Saturday mainly because I am sweeping the morning course and then my evening run will be pretty cool since it’s not only in the evening, but up in Heber City and not in the valley.

Plus, it will be another fun challenge. I’ve never ran more than 26.2 miles in a day so that will be different. Luckily, it won’t be a back-to-back race overnight like last weekend. So, I am sure I can live through it. It’s just one foot in front of the other, right?

But, this is going to be another busy fun busy week. Besides the races and running, I am also have a couple of fun family activities. Most notably tomorrow my c’niece (cousin + niece … a term of endearment we use in our family, because they are pretty much my nieces) is having her birthday party at Chuck E. Cheese.

I am not sure who is more excited for the party … me or her? It’s been a number of years since I was there last. Well … okay … three years. But, that’s a long time. If it wasn’t for that stupid rule of being accompanied by a child I would spend more time there.

Okay, that sounds a TAD creepy. #iamnotacreeper #promise

Also this Sunday is my Grandma’s birthday. She would have been 89 years old. I am trying to think of a few ways I can celebrate and commemorate it. I definitely plan on taking some flowers to her gravesite. I also think making some baklava or spanikopita is in order. The last time I made spanikopita was with her a few years ago.

Even though it’s been over five months since her passing she’s still constantly on my mind. Her bedroom has been pretty much untouched for the most part so sometimes I will wander in just to smell it. I know that sounds kinda weird, but as long as that smell still lingers it will always bring back a flood of memories.

It’s time like these I am glad my Grandma didn’t stink. As she would say, “it’s because she bathes with soap.”

Anyways … fun weekend … fun week ahead … funner weekend ahead. Here’s a little recap of my 4th of July weekend.

Thursday, July 2nd

Typically not a big party day in the 4th of July weekend, but not in our household. The 2nd is the my niece’s birthday and this year she turned seven years old. I mentioned a little bit about her and the party on Friday’s post, but really I can’t believe she is already seven years old. The day she was born really seems like yesterday.

I flew up to Seattle with my Mom to be there with my sister-in-law and brother during the delivery and the following week. I really didn’t need to be there, but my brother let me come up because they had some extra space and I just wanted to always hold the fact that I was the first uncle to see and hold the first niece against my siblings.

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Me holding Little Miss Sweet Cheeks for the first time. I’m not quite sure what to think of her at the moment.

I spent the night before she was born in the hospital waiting room. There was a cardboard couch with a thin knitted blanket for sleep. I didn’t sleep. Instead of watched the little TV they had in the room that wasn’t hooked up to the local stations, just a VCR with my choices between two Elmo movies.

I watched them both.

Through that fatigue and sleeplessness I was able to hold myself together once my brother came in and told me my niece was born. And, yes, I was the first uncle to hold her. It was kind of a surreal experience. She was both the most adorable and frightening thing I’d ever seen. I don’t know how a doctor can look at a newborn baby and not want to put it back in because it doesn’t look quite yet done.

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This is one of the reasons why I am the favorite uncle. What other uncle gets their niece a Cat Birthday Hat Card?

Regardless, over the past seven years it has been fun watching her grow, start reading, writing and come into her own. Luckily, my brother has since moved back down her to Utah so we get to see them … A LOT.

And, to think that next year she’ll be getting baptized as well. CRAZY! I am kind of laughing because I’m writing this almost like I am a proud dad. Just a proud uncle. Some day I’ll get around to having kids. But, for now I am happy being the awesome uncle.

Of course Koko is in the background being the free spirit she was born to be. I love that kid.

But, on Thursday she had a little friend party that all of the uncles and aunts attended. Well, most of them. Since it was over 90 degrees outside it was a pool/water party. I made some snow cones for the kids and of course we had the traditional cake and ice cream as well.

It was a fun little party and the most important thing is that she loved my gift and card.

Friday, July 3rd

Thanks to the 4th being on a Saturday I had the 3rd off from work. And, in a true strange Davis County tradition, most of our festivities are usually on the 3rd anyways. This is mainly so it doesn’t compete with festivities in Ogden and Salt Lake City. I won’t complain because that just means you get two of everything, right?

Since my niece’s birthday party was mainly a friend party we decided to have the big family party on Friday in combination with the North Salt Lake Fireworks. It worked perfectly too since we could see the fireworks from my brothers’ house.

Little Miss Sweet Cheeks and her birthday cake. Can you believe this kid doesn’t like frosting? Her brother on the other hand would rather have frosting than cake. Go figure?

We did the traditional 4th of July BBQ dinner with a few exceptions. My sister-in-law is Mexican so in addition to the chicken, burgers, watermelon and corn on the cob we also had some Spanish rice and pico de gallo that her Mom made. Their family’s pico de gallo is the best and I’d eat it during any holiday. Yum! Yum! Yum!

I loaded up on LOTS of watermelon, strawberries, melon and grapes. Maybe a little high in sugar for my diet, but I didn’t really feel guilty because how can you on a hot summer day? It was the perfect family party.

My Mama jumping on the tramp. This right after she biffed it on her first try. You gotta love her for the great youthful attitude she always carries.

The fireworks were great, but the commute home was horrendous. What is normally less than a 10 minute drive home it took us over an hour to make. The city had blocked a couple of streets and redirected traffic in the most stupid way. It was horrible. If I wasn’t in flip flops I was half tempted to run home.

Other than that it was a fun day and evening spent with family. My favorite way to spend any holiday.

Saturday, July 4th

Since 1976 … so for the past 39 years our neighborhood/ward has held a 4th of July breakfast each year. We’ve been a part of the ward now since 2006 so we’ve participated the past nine years, but this has turned into a tradition I not only love, but look forward to each year.

The breakfast usually consists of waffles or pancakes along with ham, eggs and fruit. But, what’s being served doesn’t matter as much as the program we have. We always start with the Boy Scouts posting the colors and the audience reciting the Pledge of Allegiance and then some sort of other patriotic program.

What’s more American than a Chuck Wagon Breakfast? Maybe hot dogs? But, hot dogs are gross.

This year the Boy Scouts recited the Bill of Rights while posting a new flag in a semi-circle on the lawn of the park. It was really neat. And, I will admit, I kind a little emotional over it. I will never be apologetic about my love and allegiance to my country. No matter how others view our current situation, it is still a beacon of hope and freedom to the world.

So when it comes to being and showing patriotism, I don’t ever believe there is such thing as TOO much. My patriotism is a prayer of gratitude to my God for the freedoms and liberties that millions gave their lives for. Those sacrifices have given us the freedom to choose our happiness, our lives’ direction and purpose. How can you not thank God for that?

Anyways, off my soapbox.

The flags posted by the Boy Scouts. I kinda wished I recorded the program.

After the breakfast I ended up mowing the lawn and attending to a few Saturday chores before going to dinner with my friends Dave and Brad. It was my free meal so I had what I love most … pizza! Well, a calzone. It wasn’t the best calzone I’ve ever had, but it hit my pizza craving just right.

We then went and saw Jurassic World. This was my second time seeing the movie, which I didn’t mind at all. In fact, I am the type of person that benefits from seeing a movie twice. It probably has something to do with the Special Ed “thing.” But, it helps me understand the plot and storyline much better. I am the same way with books too.

But, it was a fun 4th of July weekend. Lots of family, friends, fireworks and food. Lots of F-words apparently?



Total Mileage Breakdown for 2015
2015 Training Miles – 188.0 miles
2015 Walking Miles – 200.5 miles
2015 Race Miles – 185.55 miles
2015 Total Miles – 579.05 miles
Monthly Total Miles for 2015
January – 78.8 miles
February – 72.85 miles
March – 115.3 miles
April – 76.3 miles
May  97.4 miles
June  131.15 miles
July  7.25 miles



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