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Last Thanksgiving my cousin Erik was home on leave from Iraq for the two weeks before Thanksgiving, so we push thanksgiving up a few weeks so that we would all be able to celebrate with him! My aunt and uncle came up from NC to see our soldier. The brought their photo book showing off all the things that have kept them busy down south for 2011.

One of them was the Crystal Coast Half Marathon that my uncle Joe ran in 2011 (or it might have been 2010, I’m really having trouble remembering as I write this!). Sue and Joe knew that I had started to run and suggested that I come down to visit them and run the race! I though about it in the next few weeks but I just didn’t think I could get it worked out to run in 2012.

I’m not exactly sure how I started to think about going down for the race in 2013 recently, but after a couple of emails with my aunt, and a little research on flights I decided on yes!

When I was originally looking at flights I was thinking of a Th-S trip. Getting their early enough to spend time with the fam, and get situated for the race on Saturday. The flights for that trip were about $350, which I thought was pretty reasonable since you have to fly into a small airport out on the cost in NC. Thanks to my thrifty mom she emailed me saying – did you see the flight from TH-T for less than $200!? I looked and she was right! A flight for less than $200 and a little more time away from work and more time with the family! Sign me up! I confirmed with my aunt about having me the extra time she bought the ticket that day and sign up for the race!! So for only about $260 I am going to have a little vacation in NC in February!

A number of years ago my mom’s two sisters, their daughters, my older sister and I went out to NC for a vacation and also for my aunt Sue to look around for a new house. Before I knew it she bought a town home and was working on moving! My aunt moved down there and got a job as a principal, while my uncle and cousin stayed up here in MN until my cousin graduated high school. Then they sold their MN home and moved down, and my cousin started school at UNC.

Since then I have seen their new home and visit once. My family went once again back in 2009, but didn’t get back until the day before Grandma’s, so sadly I had to miss that trip!

I am really looking forward to the trip and the time with Sue and Joe. They are going to be great cheerleaders for me at the race! I hope they know it’s going to take me about 2.5 hours to finish! My training plan started last Sunday, and I have run all of once, and did my insanity work out once.

Training in the winter is so hard for me, especially because I am afraid of running outside with the snow and ice and cold, and the treadmill is so boring!

I am going to do a little running clothes shopping/exchanging (Christmas gifts) this weekend and that should get me excited for a little outdoor cold weather running!

I could really use some motivation…what kind of cold weather training tips have you got for me?

My aunt and uncle said I can bring a friend to NC…who wants to be my friend?!