Monday, December 20, 2010

Merry Christmas

A few years ago Chad and I played Mary & Joseph in the children's Christmas play at the small baptist church that we attended. I came across the picture today and it cracked me up. Since we are only 5 days out from Christmas (so exciting!) I thought it would be an appropriate time to post the picture.

The most memorable part of the play for me was getting whacked in the head with the North Star. It was attached to a fishing pole, and our music minister was responsible for reeling it down into the manager. There was some sort of malfunction with the rod and I ended up getting hit upside the head with the star. It was pretty funny!

I hope everyone has a very merry Christmas!

Saturday, December 11, 2010

NYC: The End

After Mr. David rested for a few hours, we all got cleaned up and headed down the street for dinner at Pigalle. Pigalle is a french bistro that the Brooks have eaten at during each of their trips to NYC. Mr. David said it was all he wanted to eat after eating so much pasta in the past few days. It was one of my favorite meals of the trip - but it was also kind of sad because it was our last night in New York. After a delicious dinner, we headed back over to Junior's for dessert. Chad got cheesecake, I got a slice of their cherry cream cheese pie (so rich, so delicious), Mrs. Suzy got a black & white cookie, and Mr. David got a huge slice of this coconut lemon layer cake. I think I had a bite of them all!

Monday morning we got up and got packed, and then walked around the city a little bit more. I walked a few blocks and found a Tim Horton's. I've heard great things about Tim Horton's from our Canadian friends, so I picked up some donuts for me and Chad. They were pretty good!

Mr. David, Mrs. Suzy and I took another trip down around Rockefeller Plaza, but it started hailing so we high-tailed it back to the hotel. We left the hotel around 10:30am for LaGuardia, and then headed home. It was an amazing trip, and we will forever be grateful to Chad's parents for taking us on such a fantastic trip to New York. It has been a little over a month since we got back, but I still think about the trip all the time. Every time I watch show or movie that was filmed in New York, I think about all of the fun things we got to do and the memories we made as a family. Hopefully we will all get to go back in 2012 or 2013 when I run NYC!

NYC: Day 4 (pt. 2 The NYC Marathon)

Although Sunday morning was kind of a comedy of errors (the phone dying, we couldn't find a cab, we finally found a cab but then a wreck held us up for awhile) but we ended up arriving at Central Park at almost the perfect time. Since our hotel was just a few blocks down from Columbus Circle we were able to walk down and find a great spot between mile 25 and 26. There were a ton of people lining the course, but we were able to find a pretty good spot.

It was so inspiring to see all of the runners re-enter Central Park (the course takes them Central Park at an earlier point in the race), because they knew they were at the end. Runners were cheering, crying, filming with their iPhones. It was pretty incredible, and definitely inspired me to run another marathon this spring. I hardly ever get the chance to be a spectator at running events, and I loved being able to give the runners high 5's and tell them that they were almost there. I know it is annoying for runners to hear "you're almost there!" at mile 17 or 18 of a race, but these folks really were almost there.

I was hoping to catch a glimpse of just one of the many celebrities who were running the race - Al Roker, Meredith Vieria, Jared from Subway, Bobby Flay, that tennis player
Link who had a bet with Andy Roddick, Edison Pena or the Fat Cyclist, but alas I didn't see any of them. However, we did manage to catch a glimpse of Mr. David in the crowd! The stream of runners never thinned out the entire time we were watching, so it would have been pretty easy to miss him. We spotted him right at the entrance to the park and yelled for him but he didn't see us. Chad took off running into the park (I have never seen him run so fast) and he ran right up the barricade and bellowed out "DAD!!!!" and Mr. David turned and saw him. It was beautiful! Mr. David finished strong and then got swallowed up among all of the finishers in the finishers area.

Chad, Mrs. Suzy and I headed back to the hotel
and made a pit stop at Starbucks. It was cool outside, but it was a really beautiful day. The streets were crowded with proud finishers and spectators and New Yorkers and tourists - it was pretty amazing to be a small part of something as huge as the NYC marathon.

Spectators lining the course in the park

"Almost there!"

A four-legged spectator

Runners in the home stretch

The Subway cheering team - I bet they went crazy when Jared ran by!

Runners re-entering Central Park

Proud finishers!
Mr. David & Mr. Doug

NYC: Day 4 (pt. 1)

Whew! Well, things have been pretty uneventful around here the past few weeks. I was knocked flat on my butt last week when I managed to catch both the flu and strep throat at the same time. After a few days of total rest and recovery, and lots and lots of Powerade and antibiotics, I am finally feeling normal again. Chad and I are really looking forward to heading home for Christmas in just a few weeks. I can't believe it is already mid-December! This year has really flown by.

Without further ado, here is the remainder of the NYC posts!

On Sunday morning, Mr. David and Mr. Doug headed over to Staten Island at about 5:00am. The caught a subway over to the ferry, and then once they were on the island they took a bus to the Runner's Village. I have heard the village is amazing - it is where they corral all 40,000+ runners for several hours before the start of the marathon. Mr. David said it was really well organized, and he never had to wait in line for a port-a-potty. I can't even imagine not having to wait for a port-a-potty at a race!

While they were hanging out on Staten Island, Chad, Mrs. Suzy and I hopped back on the Gray Line bus to head back to Battery Park. It was about 10:00am on Sunday morning when we arrived at Battery Park and there was no line at all for the Statue of Liberty and Ellis Island tour. We hopped on the ferry and headed over to Lady Liberty. It was amazing! It was a beautiful day and it was very cool to stand at the base of the statue. We only had like 5 minutes to get back on the boat, and despite our best efforts, we missed it. We spent some time in the gift shop and then got on the next boat over to Ellis Island.

While on the boat we realized that Chad's cell phone was dead, and it was the one phone we signed up for the athlete alerts! Oy vei! I couldn't believe it was dead - I had plugged it in the night before specifically so that it would be fully charged for the day. However, while I plugged the charger into the phone...I forgot to make sure the charger was plugged into the wall. The screen on his Blackberry changes to charger mode if the charger is plugged into the phone, regardless of if it is actually charging or not! So, I felt like an idiot. But, our plan was to take a cab back to the hotel, plug in the phone, grab some lunch, go get the phone, and then head down to Central Park to see Mr. David finish the marathon.

While the phone was charging we walked around mid-town in search of lunch. Mrs. Suzy and I got hot dogs and cold cans of Dr. Pepper (both were delicious!) and Chad got a plate of Greek food from a street vendor. After eating, we headed back to the hotel to get the phone.

Times Square, Sunday morning

Times Square NYPD

A random Elvis crossing the road in SoHo

Chad & Mrs. Suzy on the ferry

Chad & me on the ferry

Ellis Island

Chad & a very friendly bird

Lady Liberty!

We walked past this on our quest for hot dogs