Suz's love for COWS + Allan's work with LASERS = one unique blog name! Welcome to our blog filled with race recaps, pictures of our labs, and everything else we share with blogland!

Monday, March 25, 2013

Tom King Classic Half Marathon

Last year I ran three half marathons in Nashville and of the three this one is by far the flattest, the most affordable, and my favorite. They cap the field around 1500 and a bulk of the race is an out and back on the greenway with a finish on the 50-yard line in the Titans Stadium. I thoroughly enjoyed the race last year and I knew it would be one I would run again this year. When I signed up I originally expected to be running with Beth but it turned out that she wasn't able to make it.

Allan loves waking up early and sleeping in the car while I drive to races!

Instead Allan and I went up the morning of, picked up my packet, and waited for the start which is right in front of LP Field (Titans Stadium). Just like last year it was cold at the start but warmed up once we got started and the sun was out. We ran a couple of miles before hitting the greenway which is my favorite part of this course.

I like this picture because I look happy and I actually could pass for having a butt!

Honestly the only thing I don't like about this race in general is the lack of runner etiquette and there's only so much a race director and staff can do to control that. People run 3-4 wide on the greenway section and more than once I saw runners on my side interfere with lead runners heading back in. Don't get me wrong, I'm super glad that some girl and her very bestest friends decided to run a half for her 22nd birthday which made it "a birthday she would never forget" but there was no reason that they had to run 4 wide for MILES on the greenway. I finally couldn't take it anymore and ran faster than I usually would have just to put some space between myself and their pack. Next time ladies, run two wide and stay to the right! Hopping off my soapbox now...

One of the views along the greenway

Alright, back to the race. It's very scenic along the greenway and quiet so if that's your thing then you'd love this course. You also get some pretty great views of the Nashville skyline as you run back in for the finish. Several people ran with headphones so if you can't run without your music and enjoy the views you'll have your music to keep you entertained.

View of the Nashville skyline on the home stretch leading to the stadium

It's nice to get to a point on the course where you can see the stadium and even though you have a mile or so to go at least you know where the finish line is. Once you enter Titans Stadium they put you up on the jumbotron and when you are approaching the finish line they announce your name and where you are from. Last year Titans cheerleaders handed out medals but this year there were local children that had that honor. This wasn't my best half but it wasn't my worst one either. I finished at 2:47:45 and I'll take it since I had to take a bathroom stop around mile 10. I know this is a course I could be much faster on and I wish I had felt better and been able to run faster but I still had fun and that's what it's all about for me.

Sprint to the finish-no idea what I'm doing with my hands here

Besides the usual water, bagels, and bananas offered post-race they have a nice hot breakfast upstairs in the clubhouse where they have pastries, croissants, hashbrowns, and coffee. This year my stomach was a little angry so I didn't stick around to eat much or to try to win a door prize but we did last year and really enjoyed ourselves even though I didn't eat much then either. They have plenty of food for runners and your family and friends so it's a nice race to have people come and watch you at the finish and then be able to sit down and eat with you after the race.

Apparently I think the more I pump my arms the faster it will make me

This year the shirts were a yellow color that I'm not a big fan of but it's different than anything else I have so I can't say that I hate it. The medals were the same design as last year's but the colors were yellow and brown which again I didn't really like. Overall this is my favorite half in Nashville because I hate hills and large crowds so if you are in the Nashville area you should check this one out!

What do you love/hate most about some of your favorite/worst races?
Have you run a race in Nashville?

Monday, March 18, 2013

Meet Aiden!

On February 9 at 4:39 PM Aiden finally decided to make his arrival and weighed in at 9 lbs 1 oz and measured 21 in long! My sister was a champ and I swear when I saw her I never would have known she had just had a baby. I run a half marathon and look like death and she has a baby and looks fabulous-makes no sense to me! Her husband was so happy to finally meet his little man and I could see they were both head over heels already. Obviously I think he's absolutely adorable because I'm his aunt and I would tell Rachel if I thought she had an ugly baby. We operate on honesty in this family. My sister and I were both born with a full head of hair too so maybe the hair thing is genetic. It's impossible to recall a moment during which my parents were more proud and more excited than when they first held Aiden. It's truly a magical moment when a baby is born and everyone meets them for the first time! Alright, enough chatter here's what I know you've been waiting to see: pictures!

So he was fine until he saw me and then he started screaming

First diaper change

G-Pa and G-Ma getting to meet their grandson

His hair after his first bath-I swear I see some red in there!

Snuggling with Aunt Suz after bathtime

Gorgeous blanket Allan's mom made for him-it matches his nursery perfectly!

Day 2-he inherited his aunt's greasy hair. You're welcome!

What we do a lot of these days-FaceTime during naptime

Rachel and Aiden at 3 weeks of age

So there you are. That's the newest love of my life and in about a month Adam and Jodi will welcome their little boy into the world making Ali a big sister and giving Uncle Allan and Aunt Suz another nephew to spoil! Allan hasn't had the pleasure of meeting little Aiden yet but he will this weekend so be prepared for another post filled with baby pictures.

Was anyone else born with a head full of hair?

Am I the only one that sees some red in his hair?

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Green Haven Creek B&B

Staying at a Bed & Breakfast is something I've wanted to do for as long as I can remember. I always envisioned staying at an old house with sweet owners, a beautiful front porch, and nothing else in sight but trees and cows. When I saw a Groupon for a place that matched that description I was thrilled and immediately bought it and when we arrived and saw cows across the road I knew I would feel right at home.

Isn't this place beautiful?!

I couldn't leave without taking a picture of the cows across the road

Allan and I were finally able to go up to Green Haven Creek in January. Thanks to our schedules free weekends are few and far between so this was a luxury. While I could have asked for warmer weather and no rain so we could have explored the grounds we couldn't have asked for better hosts. One of the owners and Allan could have talked engineering the entire weekend if I had let them!

The gorgeous entryway

We were the only guests for the weekend so we had the entire second floor to ourselves. I got to pick the bedroom so I immediately chose the one with a claw footed tub in the bathroom. I planned ahead and packed snacks so we could stay in for the night instead of going out for dinner. They had fresh chocolate chip cookies and coffee when we arrived and you know how it goes with warm cookies-you can't have just one! There were NFL playoff games to watch so we spent the evening in front of the TV snuggled on the couch.

Our room for the weekend

They don't make tubs like this anymore. I wish I had one!

The bed was sooo nice and comfortable and we both had a great night's sleep. Allan slept right through it (no surprise there, right?!) but rain on the tin roof woke me up in the middle of the night. There's nothing more peaceful than sleeping with rain falling on a tin roof.

This was in the bathroom too and one of Allan's favorite aspects of the house-he loves exposed brick work

In the morning we had a delicious breakfast of coffee, quiche, cereal, yogurt, juices, and cinnamon rolls. We were both stuffed afterward! By some miracle Allan kept me from taking home a kitten. The owner's cat had a new litter of kittens that I fell in love with after we arrived and I spent some time playing with them on Sunday morning before we had to leave.

The dining room

I highly recommend staying in a B&B if you have a chance and if you are in south Tennessee then Green Haven Creek should be on your list for a nice weekend getaway! We will certainly be making another trip when it's warmer so we can enjoy the walking trails on the 18 acres surrounding the house. Besides checking out their website you can find them on facebook and on Twitter.

The woodwork on this old fireplace was beautiful and the photo doesn't do it justice

As a side note I wanted to mention that they place a lot of emphasis on Green Technology so the cleaning products are all-natural, their air water filtration systems blew my mind, and even the pillows and mattresses are eco-friendly. I thought this was a neat touch and after a long conversation with one of the owners he shared with us the time and effort he has put into making sure they are doing all they can to create the "eco-elegant environment" that they reference on their website.

Who knows what this is? They had a display of items found on the property and this was one of many goodies

Have you ever stayed at a Bed & Breakfast?