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Wednesday, January 11, 2012

I am a very positive person by nature / personality or whatever it may be... But I have been facing some real struggles lately. Not just lately, actually the past few years. It seems like all of these things the past few years have been coming to a head lately, and I just feel overwhelmed by all of these struggles. I want to blog about it, I want to vent, I want to share my ache in my heart, in order that it might relieve some of the pain, and I can feel positive again, but I HATE BLOGGING NEGATIVE CRAP. I've done it in the past, and I already feel like the few blogs I have done are already too much......

So, I am just going to say, I am having a VERY hard time right now. There, you have it. Please be patient with me as I vent a little negativity one more time. It seems like struggles and hardship are just bombarding us from every side. And it DOES dampen my exercise, and take the pep out of my step. And it DOES increase my desire to plunge into bad eating habits to help relieve the stress and sadness.

But I am trying to keep my head up. After being sick last week (and down in the dumps), I didn't exercise or run until Saturday (which probably added to the "blues"). But this week, I am really trying to focus on getting back into my groove.... like FOR REALZ!! No more games!!

I've decided to get back to my old running routine, and getting up earlier in the morning to get my run in. I didn't want to have to do that, but it really just works best. What does NOT work, is leaving my run until the evening!!! After spending a whole day cleaning house, looking after my crazy kids, and taking care of business, it is like a BLACK CLOUD hanging over my head to think I have to go out and get my run in. I hate it. First thing in the morning... that is what works BEST for me.

So, I am working on it. I will NOT give up on myself!!

On a side note, hubby's job is not going that great. I think they are looking for reasons to fire him, since business has not been going well. Well, we could care less about getting let go, since he will be quitting in a matter of months anyway, but it does add stress to his work day, and adds uncertainty to our lives in general..... Just one of the things that has been weighing on my heart lately. Thought I would share.

Can't wait to come home. Plain and simple. I really won't be that sad to say "Good-bye" to Germany in (hopefully) the next several months.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SEEHOLZ 1/13/2012 11:43AM


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CAROLCRC 1/12/2012 11:03AM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JUNEBUGABEE 1/11/2012 8:26PM

    Life isn't all sunshine and roses. You are allowed to have bad days, or weeks, or months-- you're only human! Sending good thoughts your way, and I hope there's a turnaround sometime soon.

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MICHSTATE 1/11/2012 8:00PM

    Please vent away!!! I wish I could help somehow!!! Just try to take care of yourself and know that I am pulling for you!!!!! Hugs!!!!!

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MAGGIE101857 1/11/2012 7:22PM

    Feel free to vent on us all you need!! My week so far has delivered the news that my aunt passed away from Ovarian cancer (hate that disease, it took my Mom in 2002; my cousin also passed away (congestive heart failure) and then we learned that a co-worker's baby girl passed away yesterday (they think SIDS). So heartbreaking. I came home and poured myself a whiskey (even though I am supposed to be on the treadmill). I am just going to allow myself a SAD night and get back on track tomorrow.

i hope things pick up for you...Time to come home : ) emoticon

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MSPRIS3 1/11/2012 1:10PM

    Everyone needs to vent sometimes, it helps get things out in the open which I strongly believe is much better than holding them in.

I am the same with running, if I don't do it in the morning, I won't do it, I have tried but it just won't work for me.

Hope things get better, I'm sure being away from home has a lot to do with the stress you are feeling right now.

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ROCKINMOM77 1/11/2012 11:38AM

    Sending some positive vibes and emoticon your way!!

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PSALM42 1/11/2012 11:38AM

    emoticon I'm having a rough time too. Hang in there.

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EMMANYC 1/11/2012 11:22AM

    Sorry to hear that you're having a rough time. You should do what you need to feel better, and if that means venting in your blog, by all means do it. Also, let us know if and how we can help. Do you want commiseration? Silly stories to make you laugh? Advice? Or just hugs so you know that you're being heard?

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ON2VICTORY 1/11/2012 11:00AM

    I agree, its YOUR blog. blogs that are doctored and tailored to make sure that all the right things are said are not REAL. Sounds like you are in a tough situation.

I think the morning routine revival may be the ticket. but I would also caution you on setting your goals too high and under estimating the stress you are under. I have been there. Try to set those goals but keep yourself loose and be ready to adapt if necessary if the unexpected blows a hole in your plan. If you cant get out for a typical mileage, switch up to a shorter distance or time just so you can simply get out there. keeping the momentum is more important than hitting a number. even 10 or 20 min is better than a kick in the teeth and should help you feel like you are still maintaning some sense of control in an already tense situation.

I was in a situation like yours and wound up gaining 20 lbs in 4 months because I lost my routine. that was over almost 3 years ago but it still has a nightmarish memory to it.

keep at it, dont ever give up, even if you only get in 10 min a day, just do it. oh BTW...vent away, that helps big time too :)

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ERINBEAR1876 1/11/2012 9:54AM

    I am sorry you have so many things going on that are hitting at you *hugs*

I think getting up for that morning run will make a huge difference. Take care of yourself, and know I am thinking of you and your family!!

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MBSHAZZER 1/11/2012 9:40AM

    Darcy, it's your blog... it's the place for you to vent and get things out of your brain! I have often felt totally overwhelmed by something and after I blogged about it, felt so much better just getting it out there. Then I usually get such nice feedback from Spark that I usually feel better. So, vent away!

Also, I know what you mean about being overwhelmed. I have so much going on right now - what works for me is exercising first thing (just like you said) and unless you feel PHYSICALLY ill, to get out and commit to doing something, anything for 30 minutes. Doesn't have to be a run - could be a walk, yoga, stretching - something that is just for yourself.


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AMOHAME2 1/11/2012 9:27AM

    Big hugs and positivity are being sent your way!! I'm looking forward to hearing things are coming together and you are on your way home!! emoticon

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MARLIMOO 1/11/2012 9:18AM

    Positive vibes being sent your way....

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RUNTRILAUGH 1/11/2012 9:11AM

    So sorry - I've had rough patches lately, too. Know that we are praying for you guys and for yall to be able to come home ASAP!!!!!


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LAURIE5658 1/11/2012 9:01AM

    Like you, I have been feeling the exact same way. My heart is heavy and under alot of stress due to several issues. I am trying to deal with them the best I can and that does include exercise. I urge you to get up in the morning and get that run in so you can take advantage of the endorphins. Please take care of yourself and like they always say...and its true...this too shall pass!


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Gettin' My Move On

Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Been upping my running a bit, and it is feelin' FABULOUS!! I'm planning to do some longer runs this week, and shoot for a bit of an "Endurance Week" so to speak - gonna earn me that Christmas dinner!! So, I have been getting myself "moving" & am really enjoying it!!

But the real "Move" I am talking about is my move back to the US of A!!! We now have been given a DATE with US Immigration in Frankfurt!!! YEEEEEAAAAAHHHH!! We will be meeting with them on January 30th! Sooner than I thought! We have been instructed to come prepared to pay the $400 in case that his case is approved.

We do anticipate maybe having problems at this appointment. We didn't follow through with some paperwork after moving to Germany. We thought once his Green Card expired, that would be it. We would just have to reapply, no big deal. WRONG. He got "ordered removed" by an immigration judge in 2010, which may not bode well with us for our interview in January. Although we didn't intentionally commit any fraud, and he did nothing criminal whatsoever, the very fact that he was ordered removed may be enough to determine him "inadmissible." Boo.

If he is determined "inadmissible" in January, we would have to pay a nice little chunk of change for a petition to override that!!! UUUUGGGGHHHH! I hope that is NOT the case!! PLUS, it will take an extra 5-6 months of processing time....

Oh, please, God, NOOOOOOOO! The thought of being here until the fall of 2012 is agonizing! LOL

But if he is approved, which we hope he will be, we will have a 6-month window when we will HAVE to immigrate back to the States. We are already looking at tickets in May 2012!

So, it is still a bit iffy. But at least in just about 5 weeks, we WILL know what the next step is!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARLIMOO 1/3/2012 9:54AM

    Nice. I know you want this. Best with the moving! Good luck with the running. I too am trying to increase my miles. Up to 7 as the furthest- since the marathon. Gotta keep on truckin!

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SEEHOLZ 12/20/2011 11:15AM

    Good luck!

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WONDERWOMAN 12/20/2011 10:43AM

    Such wonderful news. This WILL work out for you!

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-POLEDANCEGIRL- 12/20/2011 10:33AM

    Wow, how exciting!!!! I will be sending prayers your way!!

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RUNTRILAUGH 12/20/2011 10:31AM

    That would be amazing!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

I know it will work out for you!!!!!!!

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MARATHON_MOM 12/20/2011 10:25AM

    I am so freakin' excited! I know everything will go smoothly at your appointment in January! It HAS to! I will be praying for that to happen!
I can't wait til you are back and we finally get to meet up to run together! You should TOTALLY register for MIBM again this year. Because you WILL be back by then!

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JENN26POINT2 12/20/2011 10:22AM

    YAY! Where will you be moving to?

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Being thankful in spite...

Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Yeah, yesterday sucked. Got into a bit of a heated debate with DH, and was just frustrated, and sad, and lonely..... Those adjectives describe many days lately. But things are better now!! We were able to talk things out. It's all good.

Still, we are facing some very difficult times. Our finances are, well, in shambles right now. We've been struggling ever since we bought this FREAKING MONEY PIT of a house 3 years ago. LOL

As a good friend of mine once said, "Owning a house is for the birds!!" emoticon

But we have been ignoring it. We were able to get through some how, but we have not been making smart choices these last few years, and we've been living basically off debt.

The new job hit us a lot harder than we anticipated. We have literally been struggling since October JUST TO BUY GROCERIES! No joke. The only way we were able to buy food in the months of October & November was through selling off anything of value we could think of (My husband & I no longer own bikes, among other things) & financial help from my visiting mother (like she wasn't doing enough for us already!!!).

I have cut out all unnecessary buying... ALL OF IT. I wasn't even a big spender to begin. Even refused to buy things my kids really need, but can somewhat do without - like shoes, hats, clothing and such. I am literally JUST sticking to groceries and needed toiletries right now. It's tough. But really, I am not saying this to complain.... just to paint the picture of where we are at.

Buying Christmas presents for my family is completely out of the question. And I am really ok with that. Christmas to me is about (1) Jesus Christ coming to this world, and (2) celebrating His coming with your family, and having a wonderful time.

Nothing sums it up better than this photo:

I may not be getting anything for Christmas, but I have TONS to be thankful for.

1) a BEAUTIFUL family, wonderful husband, wonderful kids

2) a roof over my head, warm bed to sleep in EVERY NIGHT

3) the fact that we have not ONCE gone hungry, like I'm sure the kids in the left side of that photo have. There have been several times in the past few months when I didn't even know how I was going to pay for our groceries next time I would need to go shopping.... yes, it has been that bad.

4) our health and happiness - I think my kids are the happiest, healthiest kids in the world. =)

5) most importantly to me in this difficult time - the promises from God in His Word that tell me, even though I may go through some tough times, He WILL provide ALL things for us. Maybe not more than we need, but definitely what we need. I'm holding on to those promises with all I've got.

This Christmas may not be as overflowing with gift-giving, but I am determined to make it a wonderful one for my family!! Although I may be having a tough time, I know that there are MANY MANY people in this world who have it FAR worse than my family & I, and through these trials, I have learned to be thankful even for the littlest things!!

Happy Holidays, all you Sparkers!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

PSALM42 12/18/2011 5:30AM

    Hang in there- we're right with you.

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-POLEDANCEGIRL- 12/16/2011 2:09PM

    You are really blessed!!! I think we all need to stop and think like you. Be THANKFUL!!!

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RUNTRILAUGH 12/16/2011 12:09PM

    Yes ma'am! I think many families all around the world are feeling the pinch more than ever this year!

As a whole, I wish everyone would get back to the REAL meaning of the Season - it sure has gotten too commercialized!

Keep your chin up, God does provide and he IS providing you with your needs!

Sorry I missed this blog until just today!

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JILLIANPRNCSS 12/15/2011 6:30AM

    Thanks for the reminder, we all need it from time to time.

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SEEHOLZ 12/14/2011 6:54PM

    I keep reading your blogs, but never really get time to comment- can't really do much at work-lol. That said, just want you to know I'm thinking of you and yours this holiday season. It's easy to be grateful when you are not struggling- yet, it is important to take a step back and look at how everything is relative. Thanks for that reminder. Been there, done that btw, so I can relate and it makes me even more grateful for all that I do have, whenever I feel uncertain.
Hang in there- your attitude and faith will carry you through this time!


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ERINBEAR1876 12/14/2011 11:35AM

    Yes, you definitely have the true spirit of Christmas within you, and I love your reasons to be thankful.

Thank you for blogging about this!

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WONDERWOMAN 12/14/2011 9:18AM

    Your strong faith shines through in this. Blessings!

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DANE02 12/14/2011 8:36AM

    WOW...excellent points! Thank you for sharing and I wish you and your family all the best, success and peace throughout 2012!

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APIRLRAIN888 12/14/2011 7:50AM

    Good excellent point we never do gifts anysways

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MARATHON_MOM 12/14/2011 7:25AM

We are struggling financially this year too... so I totally understand. And my kids are "those kids"... the ones that want every new electronic gadget on the market... knowing that we can't afford to give it to them, so issues arise there. They are teenagers, and they just don't GET it.
I am with you on celebrating the REAL reasons for the Christmas holiday... and would like nothing more than to forego the gift stuff altogether this year

You priorities are right on!
God will bless you for your faithfulness, Darcy! :)

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Monday, December 12, 2011

The reason for my emoticon in my status last week...

Just missing my friends and family back in the US of A.... BIG TIME!! I am REALLY ready to come home. Hubby & I are even more convinced now than before that this IS the right decision for our entire family.

But the waiting, and not knowing when and how everything is going to happen, is KILLING me some days. All I can do is pray and trust that when the time is right, it will all fall into place. Then there are certain aspects about life in Germany that we REALLY dislike!!! For one, the horrible German school system, and how it just does NOT seem to be what's working for my son..... I absolutely do NOT want him starting a new school year here....

No more bites on the house yet. It's discouraging, but to be expected at Christmas time too. Even the real estate agent we had used earlier this year said that Christmas time is usually dead in the housing market.

We are anticipating getting an interview with immigration by the end of February???? Not sure, but hoping it will be before March, based on what we know about the process. If he is approved, he will be granted a Visa (Green Card) right then and there, and we will NEED to leave to the US within 6 months from that time. Which means, if all goes well, we should be back in the US before September.... & we will have to deal with the house with a Plan B if it is not sold by that time....

All in all, I am trying to keep my head up, stay positive, & keep going. Some days are just tougher than others.

My desire to run has been picking up, and I have been noticing how IMPORTANT it is to GET OUT THERE! Even though my 10K was a real killer on Saturday, I was totally pumped on endorphins the rest of the day, and so glad I went through with it. I loved what someone commented on my blog about needing running inspiration - to look at it like I GET to run, not the I HAVE to. That has really helped. Running & exercise is VITAL to me keeping my spirits up, I am sure, especially during this cold, dark, & dreary time of year!

Have a great day, Sparkers!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEFFIROCKSIT 12/15/2011 6:48AM


don't give up hope. Selling a house IS difficult, I know from experience. Selling our house in Buchholz has taken 1.5 years.

Ever thought of putting the house up for rent? I don't know if there are any legal restrictions if the landlord lives abroad but this might be a plan B, right?

Enjoy the Holidays with your family and have faith!


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CONFIDENTLY_FIT 12/13/2011 11:02AM

    Sending positive energy your way! Things will work out for you:)
Keep up with those runs, you are right they help!
Love your new updated pic by the way!

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MARATHON_MOM 12/13/2011 6:33AM

    Oh, Sweetie~! I know it must be SO hard on you... waiting does stink!
Your friends are ready for you to get to the States, too! I, for one, can't wait to finally meet you in person!

Keep your chin up! God's got this! He will work it out so that you can get home soon! And I am praying and believing for you that your house will be the one that sells in the dead Christmas real estate market.

Love ya girl! Keep the Faith. He will work this out for you!

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RICHOJOHNSON 12/13/2011 4:44AM

    missing friends sux

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ROCKINMOM77 12/12/2011 2:26PM

    {{hugs}} Hope everything works out soon!! Keep your chin up!!

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MICHSTATE 12/12/2011 1:36PM

    How stressful!!! I hope you find answers soon!!!!

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JAKENSAMSMOM 12/12/2011 1:26PM

    I feel for you. We repatriated from the UK about ten years ago. My oldest son was just getting diagnosed. Services vary state to state. Several states have insurance mandates. Do you know where your going? Let me know if I can be of any help sorting out services in the states, public schools aren't your only option. Keep your head and keep stepping!

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APIRLRAIN888 12/12/2011 12:13PM

    Hugs school issues are so hard

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Christmas Run...To...Tree 10.3K Race Report

Saturday, December 10, 2011

Wow, that was a real killer today!!! Glad it was just a short race! I looked outside this morning, thinking it looked pretty clear and sunny even, I thought I would take my Vibrams out for their first race debut. Not a good idea. As we got into Hamburg about 45 min away, it was snowing.... HARD!! Too warm to really stick, but still coming down hard and making it quite wet. From just the little distance between the parking lot and the start number pick-up desk, my feet were already freezing. The snow was coming down so hard, we felt like we couldn't even let the kids out of the car. Even though there was a playground right there by the Start Line, none of them had waterproof pants on, so playing outside was a no-go. DH geared up for keeping them entertained in the car for an hour... I was a little nervous about this, and felt sort of guilty, so guilty that I ALMOST had him just take us all home. But then I figured, I had come all the way out there, might as well just do it.

Just before the race, hubby takes this picture, and I almost sure I am asking him, "Are you sure we shouldn't just drive home now?"

We started off, and I already couldn't feel my feet. My Vibrams had soaked through along with the toe socks I had underneath. Seriously... they were completely numb. Why did I want to wear those darn shoes TODAY?? I mean, I have some great Gortex Adidas that are PERFECT for that weather. I was just hoping I didn't step on something really sharp and injure myself, not knowing it until the feeling returned. I felt miserable - couldn't barely see, because the snow kept falling on my glasses, and my breath kept fogging them up, it was cold, my feet were numb.... I kept contemplating breaking off with the 5Kers. But I didn't.

After 3 km, the feeling started returning to my feet!!!! YAAAAY!! But by then, my pants were waterlogged from the knees down. They were heavy, and were sloshing with every step I took. I kept trying to pull them up... but it was too late.

So, I just ran. And I really started having fun with it. I did little intervals to keep me entertained, and the rest of the race went really fast. After 8 km, I gave up trying to dodge the puddles. We had HUGE puddles covering our trail. One girl was stopping to walk and dance around the puddle, and I came blowing past, right down the middle of the puddle and trail!! I didn't give a flyin' flip, cuz I was already soaked!! LOL

Yep, that's right. Take it like a BIG GIRL! And I did! Finished with a big ol' smile on my face too! So glad I didn't drive home without running it. Finished the 10.3K in 57:41. Certainly not my fastest 10K or anything, but I had a great time.

Because I was soaking wet, and had mud splatters all up my back, hubby made me remove my pants before getting in the car. Since we didn't take anything to change into, I had to ride home pants-free! Funny! We had a great time. Kids also did amazingly super in the car too, just hanging out waiting for mommy. =)

We didn't get "bling" for the race, but instead a Lebkuchen Heart (the heart-shaped cookie around my neck). Still cool. And trust me, those things last forever. I found the one I got in 2009 at the same race.

And then there's my muddy rear...

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

STEFFIROCKSIT 12/15/2011 6:40AM

    Hey Darcy,

it's so great that you pushed through it and had fun after all. I would have loved to run this race and finally meet you in person but my injured ankle keeps refusing to heal - stubborn thing!

I was thinking of you that day and hoped you'd have fun - and you did, girl LOL.


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APIRLRAIN888 12/10/2011 10:20PM

    Omg hi....on running around world too ;) great job

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JOPAPGH 12/10/2011 5:41PM

    Glad you decided to run, but even more so that you convinced yourself to have fun with it. Hope you enjoy the holidays and get more fun runs in.

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MICHSTATE 12/10/2011 12:44PM

    Ha! Great job!!!!!:-)

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DAPHNE_RUNS 12/10/2011 11:35AM

    Wow, you had a great run. Congrats on following through and running the race despite the snow. I hope you did not get hurt because of the cold weather.

Thanks for sharing and now go have fun with your family. Get them all water proofed and enjoy the snow.


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