Tuesday, December 25, 2007

Feliz Navidad

Greetings from Santa Fe, New Mexico!

Hubby and I are here, along with my sister and brother-in-law (aka BIL). We're here visiting BIL's parents, his brother and his brother's wife. We are all having a blast enjoying the wonderful sights of the town and mountains and just relaxing together.

Prior to coming here, we were all in Las Vegas for four days. My sister's birthday was week and she wanted to go to Las Vegas to celebrate. Hubby and I LOVE Las Vegas (we were married there), so when my sister invited us to come along on the trip, we gladly accepted.

We stayed at Paris and had a great time. We gambled at a number of casinos. Hubby and I like playing craps and, although we didn't win a lot, we held our own at the tables. We spent Sunday watching football in the Sports/Book areas at Planet Hollywood and The Mirage, watching two different games. We walked the Strip, ate great food and Hubby and I even had a chance to golf.

We got to Santa Fe yesterday -- just in time to participate in the farolito walk the town as part of their celebration for Christmas eve. All the shops, churches, hotels and many residences line their sidewalks and rooftops with farolitos -- luminaries -- and the everyone in the town strolls the city. It is beautiful.

The main section for walkers is Canyon Road, which is lined with galleries. Some galleries are open during part of the walk, but for the most part the street is just filled with people and dogs out walking and enjoying the evening.

We had a great time. The weather was cold and crisp, and the sky was wonderfully clear lit by a bright, white full moon.

This morning, we went to my BIL's parent's house and had a very yummy brunch. It was a very peaceful and easy holiday.

Tonight, my sister, BIL, Hubby and I went to a great little place -- the Del Charro Saloon, where we sat in front of a raging fire, ate great (and inexpensive) food and just had a ball.

We have a couple more days of fun and then go back home on Friday. It will be great to get back in to a routine, see the cats (who are hanging with Sabrina...) and welcome in 2008.

I hope you all had a wonderful holiday!

Thursday, December 13, 2007

Winter -- bleah

Man, have we had a turn of weather since Turkey Day!

San Francisco and the Thanksgiving holiday were both wonderful. The weather was clear, sunny and unusually warm while Hubby and I were visiting with the rest of the family.

We were all out at Stinson Beach, which is a wonderful stretch of land near San Francisco. The trip was fun and very relaxing. It was really great to visit my family.

We came back to cold and grey weather though and it has only gotten worse since then.

The snow started on December 1st.... just in time for the Reindeer Run, a 5K race held every year at Lake Harriet.

The race was event that the team I had been coaching (Marianne and Sangreal) had been training for.

Everyone met at my house, since I live so close to the Lake. The Reindeer Run always attracts hundreds of runners (literally) so it is just easier to park at the house, use warm, dry "facilities" and then head off to the start line.

Marianne has been a friend of mine for a long time. She's part of my running group and was making her running come back after taking a little time off during the last year.

Sangreal is new to running. She is peppy, kind, funny and a darn good runner. Reindeer Run was her first race ever and she was raring to go!

As we were leaving my house, the snow flakes started to fall, and fall, and fall. By the time the race started, the snow was sticking to the ground and by the time we all crossed the finish line, there was actual 'accumulation'. (Accumulation is what us folks from the Snow Belt call any snow coverage that you actually have to shovel).

We all finished the event in fine form -- and I was very proud of both of them.
We tried to take a self-portrait after the event, and you can see for your self how well that worked...Oh well, the photo is still pretty cute and you can see how happy every one is to have finished!
And just like that, my 2007 race season was over...
Winter, however, was just starting and it has been cold and snowy ever since.

I'm already sick of the cold and am longing for golf, green and running unfettered by layers of clothing.


At least we are only eight days away from the solstice and then the days start getting longer!

(I'm practicing optimism. Is it working??)