Thursday, April 12, 2012

Florida: In More Detail

So, the camera is still not working, but I was able to take out the memory card, put it in someone else's camera, and then download them onto my flash drive. So that's problem #1 solved, now to fix problem #2, the camera itself.

In the meantime, I will share lots of pics from a fun and busy Florida trip:

My in-law's neighbor has a grapefruit tree in her backyard, so we were able to eat lots of them. We were lucky to get the last of this year's crop

This same neighbor had a nasty armadillo digging under her house. He was trapped the second day we were there and was carted off to the wild somewhere. She had a huge hole dug on the side of her house. Now she is hoping there are no other armadillo family members residing there. Time will tell I guess.

My in-laws have beautiful landscaping. In fact, they were voted best landscaping in their retirement community a couple years back. Here is a beautiful Bird of Paradise they have in the front of their house. Really looks like a bird, doesn't it?

Here is Alex just before we were heading to the beach for the first time. He's getting way too big!

We got Alex a boogie board to use at the beach. The first two days we were there the waves were huge, especially the second day. He had a great time using it.

On Saturday, the hubby and I ran a 5K and Alex ran a 1 mile fun run. Alex's race started at 7:30, so we had to get up pretty early to get there. This is the sun coming up behind the house across the street from my in-laws.

They had a couple characters at the race for the kids. Here is Alex and Shelly.

And here is Alex and Sharkey.

The one mile fun run started a half hour before our 5K. I thought it would be a good way to warm up a little, but Alex insisted on doing it himself. Here he is passing us at the start of the race.

And here he is finishing strong.

Alex crossed the finish line in about 14 minutes. Not lightning fast, but who cares!

Everyone who finished the one mile fun run got a finishers ribbon. Not sure if you can tell, but the shirt he has on changes colors in the sunlight. Coolest shirts ever!

As for me, I had a great run. I said Alex wasn't lightning fast, but I'm not either. I usually run 5K's at a pace between a 10:00 mile and a 10:30 mile. I've been wanting to get under 10:00 for over a year. And for this race, I did it! Barely! I finished in 30:58 for a 9:59 pace. Talk about close! But, again, who cares?!?! I did it! As I was approaching the finish line, I saw on my watch that I had about 20 seconds before hitting 31:00. I ran as fast as I could ignoring poor Alex as he was cheering for me. But that extra push at the end helped me reach my goal. It almost made me vomit after crossing, but...who cares?!?!

Not only that, but I finished in the top half of my age group. I've NEVER done that for a running race. Triathlon, yes! Running, no!

I think the thing that made me faster were my cool Easter socks. I got lots of compliments on them. It was the socks or my cool Team Tough Chick top that I wore for the first time.

And here we have Alex, AKA "Joe Cool" on the pier at Sharkey's Beach. We had fun watching the fishermen and birds.

Can't remember what kind of bird this is, but it was fun watching him try to steal everyone's bait. As you can see here, he did luck out and stole someone's shrimp.

I was planning on taking some spin classes at the Venice YMCA, but I forgot my ID at home, so I borrowed my mother-in-law's bike. Looks lightning fast, doesn't it???? Tough to get in the aero position on this thing! LOL!

Here's Alex again with his boogie board. He had so much fun with it!

We were in Florida on Easter. Here is my handsome boy before dinner.

Although my mother-in-law's bike was available, I opted to rent a bike and hit the local Rail Trail. Here is a picture of it along the Intercoastal Waterway. While riding I saw two creepy black snakes...yuck!!!!

The trail, called the Legacy Trail, passes by the old Venice Trail Depot. This is the same depot where Ringling Brothers loaded their animals to take their circus around the country years ago.

Here is one of the old railroad crossings.

Someone got smart and opened a general store right next to the trail. Love this cute sculpture!

This is the bike shop where I rented my bike: Real Bikes of Venice. Next time I want to rent the bike for the whole week instead of just one day. They have group rides all throughout the week that I can join.

One night we went out to dinner I had a Longboard Island Lager from the Kona Brewing Company. Can't go wrong getting a beer brewed where the Ironman World Championships are held, right?

I love going to see the sunset over the Gulf and I especially love it with my favorite 7-year old!

This picture I call "Son Set" with Alex trying to hold it in his hand.

Have to admit we went out for ice cream twice. Alex had ice cream called "Super Hero" and it was the brightest combo of yellow, red, and blue. Here he's showing off his bright yellow tongue.

I know all of you are probably wondering why I gave up my mother-in-laws sweet ride for a rental. Here is the Specialized Dolce I got to ride twice.

So, that's my trip in a nutshell. As I sit at home with temps in the 50s I'm wishing I were back there where it was warm and in the 80s. Some of us are planning on a bike ride this weekend on the Syracuse 70.3 course and temps will be in the 60s...brrrrrr!!!!!!! Summer, PLEASE come quickly!!!!!

Wednesday, April 11, 2012

I Need to Move to Florida!

I was really hoping to post a ton of pictures from our family Florida trip here, but something is wrong with my camera. I brought it on my almost-2-hour bike ride yesterday and about 2/3 through the ride, I turned it on to take a picture of a cool metal sculpture of a cyclist and it died on me. I was hoping it was the battery, but no such luck. I've been charging it all afternoon and it won't turn back on. Luckily I have a lot of pictures on the memory card, I just have to figure out how to get it from the card onto my computer.

In the meantime, I'll write a short summary with more details to come. We spent a lot of time at the beach and I spent some time training. Here's a bulleted list:

*Wednesday, April 4: Went to Y run group at 9:30 AM and was on the plane heading to FL by 1:15. Delayed flight and trouble finding a restaurant for dinner put me in bed late

*Thursday, April 5: Decided to take the day off from training since we had such a long day Wednesday. Went to the beach and had dinner at the house.

*Friday, April 6: Went for a run at my in-laws resort community before heading back to the beach. Leftovers and some sushi for dinner.

*Saturday, April 7: Up at the crack of dawn to head to Siesta Key Beach (rated #1 in the US) for a 5K. Not only did I PR, but I had my first sub 10-min mile in a race AND I placed in the top half of my age-group. Celebrated with some more beach time...this time at a different beach to search for shark's teeth.

*Sunday, April 8: Happy Easter! Because I took Thursday off, I decided to use my in-laws bike. Once I get my pictures up, you will get a good laugh at what I rode! A little more time at the beach.

*Monday, April 9: Was going to go to the local Y for a spin class, but then I realized I left my ID back at home in Syracuse. So, I decided to rent a road bike and hit a nearby Rail Trail for about an hour. It was a great ride...except for the creepy black snake!

*Tuesday, April 10: Still had the bike until the afternoon, so went out for another ride, this time for almost 2 hours. Again, a great ride...except for another creepy black snake! Next time, I'm renting the bike for the whole week...the bike shop was great and also nearby to not only my in-laws, but also the Rail Trail.

Well, that's it for now. Hopefully I can go into more detail when I get some pics up. Took a lot on the bike ride and at the 5K that I definitely want to put up here.