Words for Thought

(Sunset over Doak Campbell taken Monday night – too beautiful to capture correctly.)

I stumbled across this quote on Tumblr this morning, and it so eloquently words thoughts I’ve tried to express for years. Word to the wise: don’t allow toxic people to consume you and the happiness in your life. It’s ok to let go.

“Not all toxic people are cruel and uncaring. Some of them love us dearly. Many of them have good intentions. Most are toxic to our being simply because their needs and way of existing in the world force us to compromise ourselves and our happiness. They aren’t inherently bad people, but they aren’t the right people for us. And as hard as it is, we have to let them go. Life is hard enough without being around people who bring you down, and as much as you care, you can’t destroy yourself for the sake of someone else. You have to make your wellbeing a priority. Whether that means breaking up with someone you care about, loving a family member from a distance, letting go of a friend, or removing yourself from a situation that feels painful — you have every right to leave and create a safer space for yourself.”

Daniell Koepke

Throwback: The Weekend my Peter Pan Heart Turned a Year Older

I’ve been slacking on the updates, I know so I thought I’d do a little throwback to my birthday weekend. For the first time in a long, long time my birthday didn’t fall on the same weekend as Thanksgiving so I decided to make the most of it and roadtrip to Athens! The Cherry Blow Dry bar in Tallahassee was having a grand opening special, so that Friday I decided to get my first blow out. OhMyGoodness all the people who rave about them on Twitter aren’t lying. It’s fabulous to feel like…put together for a snippet of time.

The drive to Georgia that afternoon was just what I needed. There’s something healing about those country roads, even if you’re not broken.

When I arrived, Kaylynn and went to get dinner at Taco Stand. It’s this little mexican restaurant that’s super random, but really delicious. And it worked well for our pre-going out meal the last time I’d been in town. (Under much better circumstances this time, not in a state of turmoil over pending transitions in my life – though there were still plenty of transitions to come.) Afterwards we went next door and hung out with her neighbor Brady and his younger brother Drew. We jammed out to some Billy Joel (I’m not even kidding – how reminiscent of sophomore year of college is that?!) and some country music while we played Cards Against Humanity (my first time!) Later on we went downtown, which just turned into an epic evening, even if it started raining on us. We bar hopped, we celebrated one of their friends finding out he was having a baby, and of course birthday celebrating ensued. We rode UGA’s version of Night Nole, and there was a group celebrating a guy’s birthday and the bus broke out in song and also football chants. I love spirit like that. We laughed, and drank, and ran around town talking and dancing. It was one of those nights where we stayed up til 5am. When we got home there was a random kid’s debit card with us? Who the heck knows. The next morning started off kind of rough when I poured Kaylynn’s chemical solution in my eye and freaked out I might go blind. But it’s nothing a little Bojangle’s breakfast couldn’t remedy. We took the dogs out to play in the parking lot, and the poor neighbor’s dog accidentally knocked it’s tooth out on the curb! See what I mean about the types of ridiculousness that automatically ensue?  Later on we tailgated, and made delicious mixed coffee drinks and mingled and played corn hole. Then we borrowed the neighbor’s student ID, and I went to my first UGA football game. That was a totally fun experience. Then we went downtown and stayed up late into the night again.

It was a weekend that was full of my favorite things. I love meeting new people, but feeling instantly connected – like you’ve known each other forever. I love walking in groups on city sidewalks, and I love laughing til my stomach hurts. I love great conversation, the kind where you can say “oh my gosh! You too?!” rambling on about vinyl, film, running, and all aspects of life. These are the kind of times that make me feel totally alive. It’s the most simple, purest way to inject love into life. It was one of the most fun birthdays I’ve ever had.

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This was my hair post blow-out. Thanks, Cherry Dry Bar!

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Love those Georgia roads.

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Classic: The Taco Stand.

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The Blue Moon sampler pack my dad gave me!

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Story of our lives. (Big/Little pic.)

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This is Drew! Pretty sure I took this when we went back to Sand Bar after we temporarily lost the group. (Brady went to get pizza by himself!)

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It was a Snapchat filled weekend.

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Bojangles!

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Beautiful fall foilage.

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Perfection: getting to hangout with my little AND my grandlittle in the same day. Happy heart.

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Family line photo.

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Bob – love this kid!

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Kay got me a cookie cake!

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Tailgate randomness with the dogs.

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Brady and I at the game.

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Me, Kay, and Drew at the game.

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Another Snapchat.

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Group photo!

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Snapchat snapchat snapchat.

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Kaylynn showed me the magic of a curling wand.

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And to close it out, the gorgeous sunset on my drive back to Florida.

It turns out, this year my birthday happens to be the week before Thanksgiving once again! We’ll just have to wait and see what kind of shenanigans we can get into then, but this was a fabulous start to kick off 26!

Trail Run Thursday

In lieu of Throwback Thursday, I’m making it Trail Run Thursday (even though I went trail running on Monday.) Also, Monday night’s location was Tom Brown Park so this post is just full of alliteration. I know people occasionally read this blog who are also runners, and if you live in Tallahassee I suggest you try out the Trailblazers group through Gulf Winds that meets on Monday nights each week up until June with a “graduation” run at the Great Potluck Bash 4-Mile Trail Run. (I’ve never run Potluck but it’s one of those where participants try and predict their times!) So, Monday night was the first meeting of this group. I was kind of nervous because my only trail running experience was when I did the Miller’s Madness last August, and a few trail runs out at the Greenway (which kick my butt every time!) I knew it required the ability to let your body adapt to the different terrain and granted I haven’t been out on the trails in a while. Sunday morning, following Saturday’s 10K I just did an easy 2.5 mile recovery run. Monday night I was planning on doing the 3ish miles with the beginning group because I knew it’d be a bit taxing. Tsigy one of my running buddies from the Springtime training group was like, hey! we’re already here, we’re already gonna get sweaty – let’s do the six! (She’s such an encourager.) So, I might’ve struggled some but we did the six miles out there (the most I’ve done on trail,) and oh my goodness I forget what an awesome feeling of empowerment trail running gives you. There’s something about jumping over limbs and pushing yourself up hills, and being surrounded by trees and rocks and leaves. I love being able to look over to my left or right and see this gorgeous swampy scene,  a sunset reflecting off the water (I’ll admit – this reminded me a bit of Central Florida/Home, and that made me smile on the inside.) Seriously, the views out on those trails are just breath taking. It was a tough run, but exhilarating. Completing a challenge like that without giving in, makes me feel so on fire about life. So thankful that my friend pushed me that extra length, and didn’t let up! It’s such a motivator! I’m looking forward to exploring other trails of Tallahassee over the coming months, and getting to know more people in this group. It was an awesome turn out and as always a fun experience and adventure. It takes a lot out of me at the time, but I know it’s only making me stronger. I was glad to trade the roads for the day, and I know I need to discipline myself to do it more often!

I did yoga on Tuesday and just a few reps of weights yesterday morning (the evening was spent getting new tires, running a last minute trip errand, and finalizing my packing.) I ran a four miler in the dark of the early morning today, it was about 60 degrees, and the neighborhood was pretty quiet. It was nice to just be me and the pavement. And it’s also been nice to give my body a break lately. I’m thinking it’s probably needed it more than I know.

Run the Edge Facebook shared this photo in my News Feed this morning from Paws and Pavement, and it’s so true:

“Running is like celebrating your soul. There is so much it can teach you.”

Springtime Tallahassee Recap

I know I’ve mentioned the Springtime Tallahassee 10K several times over the past few weeks, well Saturday it finally arrived! Let me just say, I think it was one of the most fun races I’ve participated in yet. First of all, we couldn’t have requested more gorgeous weather to run in. The sun was shining, but it was about 49 degrees at the start, and there was a nice breeze. From what I’ve read it seems there were about 1,500 people participating in the races (10k/5k/1mi) so I won’t lie – it was crowded, but people were good sports. There wasn’t any pushing or rudeness that I encountered. Of course, after the first turn there were cars parked along the street so you got to do some fun maneuvering around car mirrors, but all that just adds to the excitement. (My cousin said he saw someone ducking under the mirrors, clever!) I parked at Chili’s a few blocks away from the Courthouse, and actually got there around the same time as my cousin Tim and his running partner Buddy, so we were able to head over together. Tim is one of the people who really inspired me to start running, but this was the first event we’ve done together (which was really exciting!) We’d already done early packet pick-up, so we used the time to do some warm up jogging around downtown. We started near the front, (which looked a lot closer until about two minutes to go-time and the gaps and space quickly filled in!) The race itself was fun, I lost Tim and Buddy around mile 1.5 but that was to be expected with how crowded it was. I found myself smiling as people would pass by I’d recognize from Monday night group runs. I loved that! Also, a sense of calm fell over me as the familiarity of the course came into view. I knew what turns were coming up, the spot before the golf course the dog always barks at, the hill I dread at the turn by the golf course. But then there were fun things people had told me about before too, like the house that plays the Chariots of Fire song from the front yard, or the house that had a yard full of spectators in lawn chairs eating breakfast. Then there was a little girl on a morning walk with her mom and dog, dragging a baby girl by the hand standing with this awe-struck look on her face as a rainbow of runners filed by smiling and waving. The race itself was great, I felt strong and consistent. Though I’ll admit – no matter what my race morning meal is at about the last quarter mile of any distance I almost always get this weird nauseous feeling. Maybe it’s excitement about nearing the finish line and always wanting to push that last bit? I don’t know but eventually I’ll figure it out. I reached a new PR for this race (52:16) and I am hoping to break 52 minutes for a 10K at some point this year. No matter, this was progress, and a beautifully fun run so it was awesome all around. The “after-party” was fun, too. After passing the finish line the 10K runners were given a pretty medal that matched our tech singlets, and a towel as well! There was free beer, too. (The good stuff – an ice cold Stella for me, mmm!) And I got to mingle with so many people from Monday nights and friends in town, and meet some of my cousins friends as well. All around – GREAT morning. This was my first time running the Springtime Tallahassee race, but it definitely won’t be my last. I look forward to participating again in the future! The race directors and organizers as well as the training group facilitators did an amazing job putting everything together and creating a smooth, wonderful experience!

 

I love when my bib has “27” in the number!

Total dork, but whatever – that’s a happy face.

Woah sun, I know but yay! My cousin Tim and I after the race!

After the race I ran to New Leaf to pick up a few groceries, and Jamie texted me: “Hey! Are you busy today?” of course not. So, we met up downtown and watched the parade together and wandered through the arts & crafts and snack booths. We got some tasty cookies from one stand and looked at some really pretty prints by local artists. Then Larry and Brody met us over by the library (they were having a book sale out front,) and we wandered through the children’s park area where the Star Wars cast was hanging out. Eventually Larry and I wandered over to Kleman Plaza and had lunch outside 101 (where there was wonderful live music by the fountain.) Though the food is good there,  it is not worth an hour and a half wait – I mean honestly? Boo! But it was too nice outside to be worried about it.


I love when the baby Star Metro bus makes an appearance!

Jamie and I post-parade hanging out by the library.

Brody hamming it up, of course everyone loved him!


Brody meeting R2D2. How sweet is that robot?!

So on the front steps of First Baptist there was a steel drum band that reminded me of Sea World, and then later they were playing songs from Little Mermaid and there was this traveling marine-life cart! You could pet stingrays and see great stuff like this cool starfish and crabs and stuff. Very cool!

Look at that face! Brody just chillin’ in the shade during lunch.

Larry, Brody and I post lunch.

The rest of the afternoon I took pretty easy with a nap and some light reading, until I joined my roommate for a sunset stroll at the Greenway. Sure my legs were a little tired, but I couldn’t resist!

It’s obvious why this is a favorite spot right?!

With a view like that, of course “I’m just sittin’ out here, watchin’ airplanes…” got stuck in my head.

Alex took this fun shot of Satchel and I. Isn’t the lighting awesome?

A simple saturday morning.

When I got off work last night I drove across town to the Greenway. (Luckily, on my way over I picked several random side roads and wound up exactly where I needed to be.) There’s really nothing like a trail run through the woods, pretending I’m Katniss. Ridiculous or not, I kind of have to or otherwise I’m too riddled with anxiety from all of the sounds in the bushes, and convinced a bear might eat me. Also, there were men climbing over the fallen logs deep in the trees and that kind of made me paranoid. Other than that, though? Gorgeous. Just wonderful. My favorite kind of tired. Plus, I was there for optimal sunset time.

Today is already off to a good start. I slept in later than usual, for me and when I drug myself out of bed for a quick morning run it was sunny and windy and I didn’t care. I was able to pre-order Something Corporate’s limited-edition clear vinyl issue of the Leaving Through the Window album! And I made sweet potato pancakes with dark chocolate chips, and a little PB2. Most of my cooking doesn’t look very pretty, and this was up there in the unsightly category, BUT delicious. Fishbraided my hair, the sun is still shining, and I’m listening to the Jack’s Mannequin Pandora station and it’s spitting out all the good ones so far: DCFC’s “Brothers on a Hotel Bed,” Of Monsters and Men “Little Talks,” Imagine Dragons, THE FORMAT! Anyway, yeah – there’s just so much we don’t have control over that when all these little moments of simple perfection appear, it makes my heart pretty happy. The only downfall to this morning is that we’re out of coffee (well, rather we’re not according to my roommate but she’s out of town and I don’t know where it’s hiding.) Off to remedy that!

Seaside in Photos

You might remember back in October I posted about a little day-trip my friend Megan and I took (Saturday at Seaside.) Well, I hadn’t shared any photos from that day, so I figured now would be a good time!

Unfortunately I forgot my camera in my car that day, but here are a few instagrams and mobile photos:

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Yay for all our snack times being outdoors this day. View from Sonic 😉

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See how cute is this building?!

Nothing like eating a plate of raw oysters, on a breezy porch in North Florida.

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Genius idea for a condiment container!

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Tiramisu gelato, mmm!

See that gorgeous sunset? Perfect day.

Views like this always make the TV nerd in me think of the first season of The OC.

Slowly sinking…

The waves were a little rough…

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Meghan & Megan!

I see the moon and the moon sees me!

Simply beautiful…

One of my favorites…(when I took this some kid probably about 13 commented on my shirt choice for the day and a mom was trying to pose her family together to take photos on the ledge. A lot of amusing entertainment surrounded us, haha.)

Love the feel of this little independent music store…

The deck had a great view of the lights and what was left of the sunset sky…

I felt like Penny  Lane…

I always tell the girls, never take it seriously, if ya never take it seriously, ya never get hurt, ya never get hurt, ya always have fun, and if you ever get lonely, just go to the record store and visit your friends.

A Saturday at Seaside

Several weeks ago on a Saturday morning, after my race at Maclay I met up with my friend Megan in the Panera parking lot, and we hit the interstate, headed towards Destin. It was a day trip, mostly for a certain store she needed to hit up at the Commons, but asked if I wanted to accompany her and hello! why not?! It was a beautiful morning to be driving somewhere, cool air, bright sun. So, we got a little bite to eat at Sonic, which I hadn’t indulged in, in quite some time and what’s not to love about tots? Plus, it was a gorgeous morning to sit out at the umbrella table sipping on a diet Shirley Temple (Sprite Zero with some cherry add-in.) So we did some outlet shopping (found some fun stuff at Gap, Nike, and Columbia and now I don’t need to go shopping for a long while. I think it’s time for another spending hiatus – notice this is after I already picked up the new Taylor Swift CD, strategic planning for sure.) Next we made the short treck over from Destin to Seaside. My oh my, Seaside is this lovely little picture-esque place. I could just wander around and stay for a week, and that’d be fine with me. We pulled into the parking lot and there was the coolest building in front of us – it was an old house and the top half was Central Square Records and the bottom, SunDog Books.  Oh my gosh, immediately in love – I mean, that’s like my dream set-up. Plus, there was a little amphitheater in a grassy area where people laid out blankets and folding chairs and were watching this kind of folky band, it was pretty awesome. We wandered around the shops for a bit, and then we went to this restaurant called the Great Southern Cafe where we sat out on the back deck, sipped some beer, ate some raw oysters ($5! I’m not even kidding!) (and I had some smoked Gouda cheese grits.) It was pretty fabulous. Afterwards we popped into a sweet shop where the nice guy behind the counter let me taste several flavors of gelato. He was so nice! Then we took our treats down to the beach and watched the sunset. It was kind of cool for October, and the sky was just gorgeous. (You know how I love a pretty sunset.) We took photos and played catch with other people’s dogs. Then we wandered around some more, since it was dark you could see all the pretty lights turned on. We browsed some at the music and books before we headed back to Tallahassee. It was really just such a great, relaxing day spent with a sweet friend. I’d definitely like to make a weekend trip back to Seaside sometime in the future.