Sunday, July 24, 2011

Happy 1st Birthday Reagan!!!

Well, I'm late on getting this out (as usual), but I still wanted to post it!  It's so hard to believe that my little niece, Reagan, is already one!  Though she did come out roughly the size of a 2 month old, she has grown so much this past year, as has her wonderful mother Jen.  I hate that we are stationed so far away, as I know we are missing a lot of your new "tricks"!  Luckily, Jen keeps us in the loop with her handy videos and the wonderful blog.

Though not to take anything away from Reagan's special day (which was yesterday), I've been even more excited to watch Jen grow into an amazing mother.

    When I used to watch you with your Marines, I would think to myself, "She's found her niche.  This is what she is meant to do, and she's damn good at it.  I hope that I can be as good of a Marine as she is."  And over this past year, I've seen you become a mother and it has been a joy.  I know that mom would have be so proud of you.
    You are able to take everything in stride, laugh through it all.  You have an amazing network of friends and family who provide support to you and whose day you brighten with entertaining stories about Reagan.  Not to mention that you look absolutely amazing!  Your dedication to staying in shape and being so active with Reagan is awesome.
     I wish mom and dad could see you in action with your little girl - it is something to behold.  And now that I've seen it, I can say that motherhood is what you were meant to do - you are an incredible mother.  The Marine Corps definitely lost out when you decided to do something else, but the world has gained a new mother and a beautiful little girl who make this place brighter!

We love you,
Jess and Sean

Monday, July 18, 2011

My beautiful Bike

The long awaited post about my new bike!!!  I haven't taken any pictures of me on the bike yet, but here it is - the Quintana Roo Lucero!  Isn't she beautiful?  She fits me like a glove and makes me feel faster (even if I'm not in reality, haha).  Maybe this weekend I will get out and have Sean take some pictures of me riding.  

Thursday, July 14, 2011

Sidewinder 10k

Last weekend, Sean and I headed down to run in the second race of the Dirt Devil Racing Series, the Sidewinder 10k.  The weather was absolutely perfect and the course was great.  These are all trail runs and there are some pretty amazing runners out there.

Sean looking strong on the trails!  
Ignore the words across the picture...I'm too cheap to pay for it, so I just did screen captures :-)
Finisher photos!  Does anyone else get a burst of energy when the end is in sight?

The next race is the Stairway 15k and will be 14 August.  The total series is completing a 5k, 10k, 15k, and half marathon.  The group that coordinates the races is great and they do a fantastic job of making the courses challenging and fun!

Saturday, July 9, 2011

Restoring Faith in Humanity

For the most part I think that most people want to do good and very few people are truly evil.  Today, I saw that humanity firsthand and I was again reassured that I have the right views of people.

During a bike ride from Carlsbad up to Oceanside with Leonie, I was having trouble with my ability to unclip at stop signs.  The first time I fell, it was legitimately my fault - I failed to judge how long we'd be at the stop sign (I thought we'd be able to breeze through with a quick pause), and when another truck was coming, I just sort of tipped over to the left for a very ungraceful landing!  I got back up and we kept going, but I didn't check to make sure my shoes and pedals were okay.  As we went through Oceanside, there were several stop signs and when we got to an intersection where I needed to unclip, I tried desperately to get out of my pedals, but something was stuck!  Again, I tipped over to the left, but my foot was still stuck! (Turned out that my pedal clip had actually lost a bolt and cracked!)

I had the misfortune of falling in FRONT of a truck whose driver may or may not have seen me go down.  With my head just a few feet from his front right tire, I was in a pretty bad position.  Suddenly, this older gentleman came running up, shouting at the driver and passenger in the truck that there was a rider down and not to move forward...pretty much saving me from getting my head crushed!

After I finally got my shoe unclipped and off to the side of the road, I realized that the gentleman who had gotten the attention of the driver was homeless.  He had some possessions in a plastic grocery bag, which included some juice, a book about God's love, a blanket and maybe a few other things.  I would be willing to bet that he had some mental disorder, but all the same, he did everything he could to help.  First he asked me if I wanted any juice, because I may need to keep up my blood sugar.  Then, when he saw that I was bleeding, he pulled out his blanket and offered to wipe up my knee!  He tried to give Leonie and me his book so that we could pass along the message, but we politely declined it.

I don't need any book to pass along his message though - be kind to others.  If you can help someone in need, do so.  The smallest act of kindness goes a long way.

His willingness and eagerness to help and to possibly share with me the few possessions he has in this world amazes me!  Though my faith in humanity wasn't ever really waning, I'd say that this morning's encounter helped reaffirm it!

Friday, July 8, 2011

East Coast Travels Part 1

On 29 June, Sean and I packed up and flew to Raleigh on leave, where we linked up with Jen and Reagan.  We immediately hopped into the car and drove up to South Boston for a lovely visit with Sean's mom, Dody, and her husband, Garland.  They have an absolutely gorgeous cabin up there and have made some amazing renovations to it in the past year, which we were excited to see!
First I got to see my awesome (and apparently very sleepy) niece, Reagan!
Dody giving Reagan some love!
Garland trying to get Reagan to drink her bedtime milk!
We can't forget the four-legged beasts - Pepper and Rufus...I mean Fargo :-)
Sean had us out there everyday doing some sort of interesting workout...
Great form, Jen!
On Friday night we went to the South Boston Speedway and Reagan had a big time!   

We finished off the night with an awesome display of fireworks!

We had a wonderful trip and it was great to see Dody, Garland, Pepper, and Fargo!  Thanks for everything!