Wednesday, January 20, 2010

Happy Birthday Seth!

I am so blessed to celebrate my wonderful husband! Today is his 29th (and holding) birthday. Seth has many interests and many talents and I am so grateful that I get to be part of his journey.

I celebrate Seth because...... he's a runner, he's creative, he loves to cook, he loves to worship through music, he's a reader, he's a great uncle, he's loves numbers, he would rather bike or run than drive, he is patient, he's funny, he has a tender heart, he's a leader, he's my husband and best friend and most of all I celebrate him because he is a child of the Most High King and he strives to live his life in a way that brings honor and glory to his Creator. Seth I love you and celebrate you as the man God created you to be! Happy Birthday!

Monday, January 18, 2010

Wild West

Sunday evening, Heather and I headed to the desert to do some horse back riding. Heather is all smiles as we get out to the ranch to go for our desert adventure!
Heather gets saddled up on her horse Nick.
My horse's name was Jake, once we were all saddled up, we were off on the trail lead by our cowboy Skip.
...and we are off through the Sonoran Desert in the Tonto National Forest.
What a view!
Heather's horse Nick was struggling to keep up, but a few kicks and he picked up the pace!
Giddy up!
After an hour through the desert, we arrived back at the ranch.
Heather and I in the desert with the sun going down in the background!

We had a great time riding horses. Skip, our cowboy, even let us gallop a little, which was both fun and a little painful. Again, it was very fun but today I can tell I am not a cowboy...very sore!

Fun in AZ

After the 1/2 marathon, we headed back to our resort to relax before our evening adventure. We headed to the pool to soak up some sun!
With free wi-fi, what better than to update the blog while sitting at the pool!
It was so relaxing to sit by the pool. 72 and sunny, not bad for January 17th!

P.F. Chang 1/2 Marathon

Sunday morning, I ran in the P.F. Chang 1/2 Marathon. It was a great event with lots of bands along the route and plenty of entertainment to get everyone to the end. I was a little late getting to the start and didn't make it into my corral, but with chip timing, everything worked out and I made it to the finish in 1:21.57
Since I got started in the wrong corral, I was about 4 minutes behind where I should have been in the race, so even though Heather was on the course, she expected me at one time but I didn't get there until about 4 minutes we missed each other on the course. We found each other at the finish and we also found this huge P.F. Chang inflatable with an electric guitar!
Finish line...thumbs up, I made it!
Our housemate, Don, ran the full marathon. He did awesome and finished in 3:17.33, fast enough for a Boston qualifier, nice work Don! Heather and I wanted to watch Don finish, so we headed over to the marathon finish line. While we were standing there, I noticed some orange trees behind us! I went over and picked a couple...
...peeled it, and ate it. Boy, oh boy...that orange was so sour, I couldn't eat it!

I had a lot of fun running the 1/2 marathon. Great weather and great music!

Grand Canyon

Heather and I headed to Scottsdale, AZ for a few days to get away from the Iowa winter and I was signed up to run the P.F. Chang's Rock 'n Roll 1/2 marathon. We flew in Friday and the race was on Sunday. On Saturday, we loaded up the car and headed up to the see the Grand Canyon! It was about a 3 to 4 hour drive...but definitely well worth the drive.
On the way, we made a bathroom break and found a scenic overlook, warming us up for what was to come.
At the advice of our concierge, Barb, we took a scenic route to the Grand Canyon and stopped off to see the Little Colorado Scenic Overlook.
We were impressed with the little Colorado overlook, again it was a good warm up for the views to come!
Back on the road, we took turns driving and navigating the roads of Arizona.
We made it to the entrance of the park...Grand Canyon National Park, and yes that is snow on the ground!
Our first stop in the park was at the front gate to pay our park fee. Heather was driving and noticed the name tag of the gal working, "Trisha Vander Linden". Heather said "That's a very dutch name." Turns out her grandma lives in Pella, Vi Vander Linden, who lived two doors down from Chad and Shay...what a small world!
Next we stopped at the Watch Tower overlook...and what an overlook!
A classic senior picture pose.
All smiles as we take in one of the 7 natural wonders of the world!
This overlook was called Watch Tower because there was a 5 story watch tower that you could climb up and see out! The outside was under construction, so we didn't take any pictures outside, but here is Heather looking out one of the windows as we were climbing to the top! level...
...and the view from the top...Amazing!
We loaded back in the car and headed west to see more of the canyon and enjoy our sack lunch...a little chips and cheese, but not regular chips...Longboard Chips
...and baby carrots...very baby carrots.
The next pit stop was Moran Point...and another great view!
All smiles as we look out over God's creation.
I took a little walking path that went to the end of a rocky point for a closer look!
Heather and I on the path, using some rocks as our tripod!
We headed to the next stop but found a small lookout...this time we used a tree branch for the tripod to set up the camera.
We got to Grand Canyon Village and as we were walking around we noticed the warning..."Let Squirrels Feed Themselves", hopefully not on car parts!
Heather and I and an amazing view!
Looking the other way...still amazing.
Even though there is snow on the ground, the sun came out and it was around 45 degrees, that was warm for us Iowa folks! Next stop...Hopi Point, elevation 7,071 feet. Heather takes in the full view at Hopi Point. Heather and I at Hopi Point. ...taking it all in. Good thing that railing was there because this was a steep drop off! ...but what a view!
One last picture at the Grand Canyon before we leave.
On the way home we stopped at one of our favorite burger stops ever...In-N-Out Burger!
I fully enjoyed the Double-Double!
It was the end to a great day, Grand Canyon followed by In-N-Out!
We had a great time at the Grand Canyon, taking in the full wonder of God's creation! We also fully enjoyed the food at In-N-Out burger!