I really wasn't looking forward to last Friday at all. Each year I attend an ethics seminar in Tulsa to support my former internship site, and the thought of driving two hours to Tulsa, attending the workshop, and then driving two hours back, all on my day off, just sounded like pure torture to me. But in Sommer's words, "It is what it is," and I knew it needed to be done. Then, on Wednesday morning BJ said out of the blue, "We should go to the strawberry festival in Stilwell this year!" Well, lo and behold, the little town of Stilwell, Oklahoma is about two hours east of Tulsa, which is two hours northeast of Oklahoma City anyway. My brain quickly registered this as a way out of a day of complete misery by myself, and I said, "Well, how about we all go to Tulsa together, and after my workshop we can head out east and attend the festival together the next day!" BJ agreed and his parents wanted to join us too, so as it turned out I left for Tulsa at 5:45AM on Friday, and everyone else left around lunchtime and met me right after the workshop was done. Just to make sure I wouldn't be oh-so-lonely on the ass-early drive to Tulsa, BJ and the boys gave me Adele's "19" album as an early Mother's Day gift. And we all know how much I love Adele.
All in all, the trip was great fun but the strawberry festival really sucked. The strawberry season had already ended, come to find out, and so no local delicious strawberries were available. Instead, we each ate a bowlful of Driscoll's strawberries (which were still delicious) and checked out the other festival happenings until venturing back home in the afternoon. Silas adores BJ's parents, and now he is bent on going on a trip with them again. The other day when I woke him from his nap, his eyes flew open and the first words out of his mouth were, "Go on a trip?"
He definitely had some exhilarating moments on the trip...
although other moments clearly must have sucked.
Silas enjoyed the hotel room in Muskogee the night before the festival. He especially enjoyed the rare treat of sleeping between BJ and me in the hotel bed. I woke up at 4AM with his head wedged in my back, as he had turned his little body horizontally.
Susan tasting the delicious California strawberries
George and I had a good time too, although eating at restaurants where I couldn't easily control for dairy in my food caused me anxiety.
Silas and his Pop are such good buds. Together they rode the train, which Silas affectionately dubbed "Thomas" given its blue color.
Thanks to Grammy and Pop for a memorable adventure!
On Sunday, BJ and I participated in our second annual Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon Relay. Once again, we had a great time and are already planning for next year! The weather this year was quite an improvement over last year's relay; this year it only rained during about half of my leg instead of during every step of it! The rain was light and, if you like to look at things from the bright side, a little refreshing even. The temperature was the biggest difference though; a balmy 68 degrees compared to last year's 40-something. I wore a tank top the whole time and was never hot or cold.
Our finishing time was spectacular, thanks to every runner of the relay besides me! Greg, for instance, ripped us all a new one and ran eight minutes miles to round out a 48-minute 10K. What what! My goal, as stated previously, was not a time or distance really, which is a good thing since my performance wasn't on par with where I had hoped. I had not been able to run as much as I had planned and was struggling with a prolonged exhaustion as a result of George going through a mega-growth spurt. (You should see him now though! His legs are cute and chubby!) However, the goal of it all was to get myself out running so that I could lose all of that baby weight, which I have. I really would like to be a good runner; I'm not talking about one of those cross-country skinny mini's, because that's probably never going to be me. I just want to be able to run three miles on a consistent basis without feeling as though I'm about to pop a lung. Chanda, her husband Landon, BJ, and I have decided to keep up our running and we are going to sign up for the Moore War 5K at the end of August.
After we left the finish line, we went and paid our respects at the Memorial, which is really what the whole thing is all about. The Oklahoma City bombing has always struck a nerve in me, as it has with everyone who lives here and was here when it happened, and now that I am a mother I find it even more incomprehensible. For those of you who have never seen the memorial, it is a peaceful place on the site of the fallen building with a large reflecting pool. On either end of the pool is a large wall, one with the time 9:01 and the other with the time 9:03 (the bomb exploded at 9:02am). Overlooking the pool are 168 chairs, one for each of the victims. Some of the chairs are much smaller than the others, which I assume represents the children in the daycare who were killed in the blast.
I tell you now, I cry as I imagine the possibility of that happening to my children; should they be taken in a terrorist attack, I would likely go insane with grief. It was no doubt quite motivating that, as you run through the course, there were banners hanging on light posts depicting the names of individuals who lost their lives that day.
BJ and I think we will make this day's activities a part of our family for a very long time. We are eager for the days a few years down the road when Silas and George can participate in the Kids' Marathon also. In this event, the children keep a log throughout the spring and they run one mile 25 times. On race day, they run the final 1.2 miles to complete their marathon distance. What a great way for our family to always honor and respect this day. Many thanks to BJ, Chanda, Jordan, and Greg for running with us this year, and for Landon, who was strong sideline support.