Friday, May 22, 2009

Star Wars is Star Trek

I got to see Star Trek last week with Cairo.  It was awesome!  Go see the movie even if you’re not a trekie!  It lives up to the hype.

I stumbled upon this video and just had to share it.  Too funny!

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Saving Money is FUN! Kind of… Sort…

Last week, I had that dreaded moment of having the radiator steaming out a warning sign to me.  I took the car into my usual auto repair place and was sticker shocked by how much it would cost to fix it.  Times are a bit tight for us and everyone, so I was determined to fix the car myself.

Below is what the auto repair shop was going to charge me and what I was able to do it for…

Them Me
Radiator $355.00 Radiator $184.00
Labor $240.00 Labor – 0 -
Thermostat $11.43 Thermostat $11.00
Labor $124.80 Labor - 0 -
Flush Coolant $38.95 Flush Coolant $14.00
Labor $48.00 Labor - 0 -
Cost $818.18 $224.92

Cost Savings: $593.16

By the way, the originally gave an estimate with replacement of the Water Pump which would have been another $440.  I did purchase the Water Pump, but decided against once I saw the additional time it would have taken to replace it.  I wanted to see how the car would do with just replacing the radiator and thermostat --- great news is that it’s doing very well!

Looking back at the experience, I tip my hat to the auto repair peeps!  It’s a crazy time working on a car.  It takes a lot of patience and the ability to fit your hand in places that normally a hand shouldn’t be able to fit.  Oh yeah, you have to do this while turning a wrench.

I did have some great help from a neighbor friend.  He helped tremendously.  He definitely seemed to enjoy this more than I did.  Then again, I wanted to keep running into the house to wash my hands.  Just kiddin’!

Kudos to my Dad for dragging me out while he was working on his cars.  Without that experience I wouldn’t have had the courage to work on the car.

If you ever need to get a radiator, check out www.radiator.com!  They have great customer service and I was able to pick up the radiator locally.

Friday, May 1, 2009

OKC Half Marathon

OKC 010A bit late with this blog post as I had one crazy busy week.

I had a great time this weekend in Oklahoma City with my family and 18,000 of my closest friends.  My family and I enjoyed getting there on Friday night and relaxing.  Saturday, we went sightseeing.  First, we went to Midwest City to show the kids where we lived when in the Air Force anOKC 013-cropd in the first four years of our marriage.  Everything always looks smaller when you go back to visit.  We drove by Tinker Air Force Base… the kids agreed that it doesn’t look as glamorous as the commercials make the Air Force out to be.  I enjoyed the 8 years that I served.

We checked out the Expo after the walk down memory lane.  The expo was smaller than others I’ve been to, but we all snagged a cool knapsack bag.

Sunday morning came pretty early.  I decided to let the family sleep and I’d take the bus from the hotel down to the start line.

The buses were suppose to be at the hotel every 15 minutes.  After waiting for 40 minutes and no buses, I was able to ride with a mother/daughter duo.  Very nice!  You’ve got to love the running community!  Always willing to help each other out.  There were so many people waiting for the buses.  I doubt that everyone was going to make it on time.

I got downtown in time for my bathroom rituals.  I only had about 5 minutes to get into the staging area.  I wasn’t able to make it into the pace group that I wanted to.  I was forced into the back since the barricades were blocking the way in from the side. 

OKC 002-cropIn the beginning couple of miles, I had the usual excitement and adrenaline pumping.  Since I started in the back, I had to pass a lot of people to get into a comfortable groove.  The early miles weren’t too bad, I felt pretty comfortable.

About half way through the run,the humidity was turned up like crazy.  I was dripping buckets.

There weren’t any major hills, but it seemed that the rolling hills wouldn’t stop.  I was like “come on already, enough with the hills!”

OKC 033 It was such a huge lift to see my family cheering me on along the race.  They were able to find me a couple of times.  I text them each mile along the way.  I also sent text messages to my running sister, Denise along the way.  They both sent me encouraging messages along the way.  Sometimes it was hard to read their messages since I was going soooooo fast!

OKC 268-crop

The race started to the north and then on the return headed to the south.  The south wind brought the humidity that I talked about it.  The wind was a crazy Oklahoman wind.  It kicked up pretty fiercely.

I was really hoping to beat my PR of 2:10:20 for a Half Marathon, but I missed by a half a minute.  In the last mile and a half, I turned up the pace, because I really thought I had a chance to beat that pesky PR.  Check out my race results.  To check out the couple of pictures that were taken of me on the race course, click here and search on the BIB Number of H1570.

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I cannot stay away from racing.  Tomorrow morning I’m running in a 5 mile race.  I’ll set a PR for sure since I haven’t run a 5 mile race yet.  I’ve ran in 5K, 10K, 15K, 20K, and Half Marathon races.