Thursday, March 26, 2015

Number 53 - 2015 Georgia Half Marathon

This past Sunday for race number 53 I did the Georgia Half Marathon.  For me, except for getting soaking wet from the rain during the race, it was pretty much uneventful.  This was the fourth or fifth time doing this race, so there was really nothing new about the course.  I'm glad I did the race, glad I took advantage of the discount price of ~$47 (paid a very long time ago) compared to what they were charging during normal signup for the half $85/$105/$120.  But to me, there is just really nothing significant about completing number 53.

However, I do know of two people out of the 7000+ people who did either the full or half marathon on this rainy, soggy Sunday morning, whose race was very significant - Antonio and Marsha.  You see for Antonio, this was his first marathon and for Marsha, it was her 200th marathon.  For them, this race was very significant.

Antonio's First

It's a small world.  In my previous post I wrote about getting a special pizza in celebration of our 39th wedding anniversary from Gordo's Pizza.  Well it was Antonio who made it!  When I was there getting the pizza I found out Antonio was doing the Georgia Marathon for his first full marathon.   Marathons are hard and when I hear of someone doing one for the first time, it gets my attention.

So in between Antonio making pizzas, we talked about the race and his prep for it.  I could tell he was ready and he was psyched for it!

Although it was still dark and raining our paths crossed in Centennial Olympic Park before the race started and I wished him good luck.

Congratulation Marathon Man Antonio!

Marsha's 200th

I first met Marsha when I did my first marathon - 2011 Soldier Marathon.  She is also a walker and as it typically goes with walkers, we're back of the pack type folks.   That was her 99th marathon.  Well get ready to do the math, this race, the 2015 Georgia Marathon, was her 200th marathon!   Incredible!

I had no idea that Marsha was doing the Georgia Marathon for her 200th.  But having a similar pace, I thought I saw her just ahead of me around mile 7 where the half marathon splits off from the full.  I actually had to speed up to see if it was her - it was.  I shouted out her name and wished her luck.

The picture above is actually from a different race where we crossed paths.  Marsha blogs about her races on bookladywalker.  I also saw a comment she made on FB regarding this mile marker "At least number 200 is in the record book - now on to that 300 mark"!

One other thing, yes she does have much more time to do these races now that she is retired, but did I tell you - she didn't start doing marathon walking until the age of 59!

Congratulations Marsha and good luck with the next 100!!!

Saturday, March 21, 2015

39 Years

It was 39 years ago yesterday that Mary and said "I do".  Holy cow!  Where did the time go?  Honestly it seems like maybe 10-12 years ago.

Anniversaries are different at this stage.  The celebratory aspect is nothing like it was on the first, fifth, tenth anniversary.   I wanted to do something, something different but struggled with what.  And then it hit me - one of the things we use to do back in our dating days to celebrate something was to simply get a garbage pie from Umberto's (amazing! they are still in business) and a couple of root beers.  So although we did go out last Sunday for a joint birthday/anniversary dinner, last night we celebrated with a garbage pie and some root beers!

Unfortunately Umberto's is about 500 miles away so instead we got our garbage pie from a local pizzeria - Gordos Pizza.   It was really good!

Really, it couldn't be more than 10-12 years ago!

Sunday, March 1, 2015

Re-Purpose That Old Cabinet Door

About two years ago I did a home improvement DIY project - a butcher block kitchen island.  Well, like with most projects there are always parts and pieces leftover.  The pack rat in me could not throw them away.

Glad I did not throw this stuff away, came up with an idea for what to do with the leftover cabinet door and drawer.

A coat rack with re-purposed railroad spikes and a little artwork.

About 99% of the materials used for this were re-purposed.  As always my projects seem to take much more effort & time than first anticipated and this one was no different.  If you're curious, here are the steps:

Step 1:   Sanding the old door and drawer front.  Since I wanted to paint it the surface had to be sanded.  Luckily I had a belt sander and a hand sander - what a difference they made.

Step 2:  Cut all the pieces of wood needed to glue to backside square of the door.  The was by far the hardest part of the project.  I did not purchase any new wood for this, all wood was in my garage leftover from previous projects.  The idea was to have different lengths and heights and to paint them various colors.  A total of 41 pieces of wood were used.  It was a lot of cutting.

Step 3:  Paint the cabinet door and drawer black.  I had to remove all of the pieces of wood for this step.  I did number the back of each piece as it was getting to be like a jigsaw puzzle and it would have been really hard to put everything back together exactly as it was.

Step 4:  Paint the 41 pieces of wood.  I had a hard time determining what colors to use - how many, bright, gloss, matte,...  I don't have much experience with this.  Ended up buying 19 different colors at Michael's and basically gave up on deciding and used all of them.  This part took a bit longer than anticipated also as each piece had to be painted twice and a few of them three times.

Step 5:  The railroad spikes.  I had some old railroad spikes in the garage, don't even remember how or when they got there but they seemed like a good re-purpose thing.  So I decided to use them for coat hangers.  After getting all the rust off of them, there was another challenge - cutting & securing to the wood - how would I do this?  Ended up cutting them with a hack saw, drilling a hole in it, tapping it to make threads, and get screws to match the threads.  Luckily this all worked.

Step 6:  Putting everything together and gluing the 41 pieces of wood.

Already decided - we're not keeping this (in the mode of getting rid of stuff in the house, not adding to it : )  Who knows, maybe I'll open an Etsy shop as I have more ideas for the rest of the kitchen island leftovers.