I have a sneaking suspicion that my time as an unemployed individual may be short lived. This is a huge blessing, of course, but in truth I believed it would take much longer. Now that I suspect UAH may be contacting me with a job offer before too much longer, I am trying to enjoy this free time as much as I can.
Thursday morning I did a 15 mile run with my friend, Kristi, and we hit some HARD Huntsville hills. She is a training partner who is always game for whatever I come up with, and so when I tell her I've got a plan and I need some hard hill work in the midst of a long run, she's ready to go. I did threaten at one point not to be her friend anymore as we ran down a steep hill I knew we were going to turn around and climb, but when we triumphantly reached the top, I decided we could stay friends after all.
After my run I came home, showered, and rested until a lunch with my friend Katherine at Moe's. We had quesadillas with steak, cheese and beans in them and that was the perfect post-long-run meal, not to mention the catching-up and conversation to be enjoyed.
Next I rushed back over to my side of town for a No Boundaries meeting at the Wellness Center. My sister and I will be coaching the Madison Branch of this program starting in August, and I am so excited about it. The Wellness Center will act as our host, providing speakers and a weight training course for all runners. I cannot wait to get started.
After that, I headed home to do a few chores and get dinner started. Since I had plenty of time, I decided I would tackle, for the first time ever, banana bread. This is one of my all time favorite breads, but I have never made it myself (which isn't shocking knowing me and my kitchen skills). SUCCESS! Absolute complete success. Crispy on the outside, moist but not gooey on the inside. I was extremely surprised and pleased...as you can see.
After the banana bread I made honey mustard chicken and steamed broccoli for dinner, which was also a success. You may call me Martha.
Friday morning I went for a walk with my sister and then came home to see Jason off to work, run a quick 3 miler, and get ready to go to Marathon Mountain. Julie picked me up around 10:00, we went to Fleet Feet to sign up for the Twilight 5k (which we will run tonight) and then off to Fayetteville to have lunch with Mom and Dad, and Mom's sisters.
Mom wanted to show us her newest hobby - the turtle pen. She and Dad made a turtle pen and Mom has been filling it with turtles she's found on her land and during her runs through the country. She now has a total of ten turtles. She feeds them fresh fruit, veggies and dog food every day, and she even has 3 turtle eggs to show for her efforts.
She lines them up and commands them to eat what and when she says. And most of the time they do it. Who wouldn't? She can be quite formidable.
This is Baby, the tiniest of the lot. He is kept in a small cage at the edge of the pen because Mom loses him and will spend hours trying to find him amidst the rocks, strawberry plants, and the small homemade pond in the larger pen.
Julie dropped me off at home a little after 4:00 and I went for one more 3 miler before dinner and relaxation with Jason. He made homemade blonde brownies (with chocolate chips in mine) and we watched Collateral before hitting the sack after a fun, full day.
Now it is Saturday morning and we are both lounging around a bit before going for a run, going for a bike ride, and racing this evening at the Twilight 5k. I'm not exactly sure what next week will bring. Maybe a call from UAH, maybe a new office, new hours and a paycheck. Maybe a few more days of freedom before I return to the land of the employed. I look forward to being there, of course, but I can't say I won't look back at these days full of whatever I decide to do, and sigh now and again. They've been just great.