Thursday, December 30, 2021

Consider This Our Holiday Card

One of my favorite things about the end of the year is reflecting back on all the things throughout the year.  This was easier when I was an actual blogger who blogged about all the things all the time.  I enjoyed reviewing the chronicles of our life, but as life has taken over, blogging has obviously gone to the wayside... and so now I have to just look at pictures from the year and hope that I can remember the specifics.

But I'm going to do a 2021 review... So here goes.


After closing on New House right after Christmas 2020, January was move-in month.  

First New House selfie!

The empty pod.  For real though, fuck that pod.

I vacuumed our back yard because of all the shards of glass.

Teh Ville 3.0!

First sleeps in New House!

Other than moving in things, I did some running and fuck it was cold.

Meri, Sandra, and Pax continued their usual shenanigans.

The ladies watched Madam Vice President become a reality.

Bestie and I went into DC the following afternoon to see the flags on the National Mall.  They were mostly already picked up, but we saw some and it was a fun reminder that we can do spontaneous things now.

Beasts being beasts.

Most important for January was that we had our first out of state visitors, Teh PT Wife and Teh PT Kid, for Teh PT Kid's bday weekend!  We did all sorts of fun things, including touring the National Mall, eating all the food, B&O Railroad Museum, the National Aquarium, annndddddd the weekend was topped off with snow!


Birfday month!  I got snow for my bday!  It was fabulous.  

Teh German bought us bicycles as a combined birthday/Christmas present on Valentine's day.

Sunrises from my kitchen window.

Then for Teh German's bday, we went ski/snowboarding at Whitetail Mountain, the closest slopes to us.  They are only Appalachian hills and not the Rockys, but I mostly wanted Teh German to see that there are slopes nearby if he wants to make the daytrip to go do the things.


In March our bedroom furniture FINALLY arrived and we no longer looked like we were living like college students with a mattress on the floor.  

There were continued dog shennanigans.

At the end of February, Teh German and I started doing Crossfit since there is a gym 7 minutes from the house.  We needed to find some people and I figured this was a good place to start, given COVID limitations.  We attended several Friday Night Lights games to watch people compete in the Open.

We also managed to do some yard things to prep for our fence that took foooooorrrreeevvverrrrr to get.  We didn't realize that we were going to need a variance when we signed to put up the fence in January, that paperwork took half my life and finally started moving in March.  We would continue to wait until May until our variance hearing, but we'll get there.  To prep for the fence, we had to clear out the back corner of our lot which was overgrown with something (vine, tree, we'll never know) and had HUGE pile of rocks.  All the rocks were moved to the slab in the backyard (which has been discussed at the future home for a shed) and the overgrowth was cut down, loaded into the trailer, and hauled to the yard waste location for the county, 40 minutes away.  It was a whole thing.  But we got it done.

We had the permanent fence put up around the back of the yard, but we had to leave it unfinished until our variance was approved (we weren't sure if they would approve a 6 foot fence on the street side of the house, which would affect the end point of the final fence).  This meant that the dogs got a larger poop spot than just the temporary fencing we'd put up around the backdoor.  

I reread one of my fave books: Untamed by Glennen Doyle
Here's to The Untamed:
May we know them.
May we raise them.
May we love them.
May we read them.
May we elect them.
May we be them.

Did some outdoors activities.

And of course, these bitches continued running the house.


In April, things started to settle some.

We found Teh German's new favorite hipster restaurant.

Continued dog things
(Here you can actually see the unfinished fence, there is a temp fence up that kept the dogs contained)

The gym has a running club, so we did the virtual Cherry Blossom 5k/10 miler (10 miles for me) at the National Mall on Easter which was actually really fun.  Then after we had brunch, as one does.

With the weather warming up, it was time for motorcycle things again.  Bagheera became an official MD resident.  Group rides were a thing since Teh German joined an MD riders group on FB to see when people were going out and he got to know some people.

In April, Teh German's age started showing and he had to wear a boot for his ankle for a few weeks.  He's fine and nothing came of it, but the boot remains in our closet for "just in case".

We found a place called Prost in DC, which we knew we had to try!

And there were more outside adventures on our slower 2-wheeled vehicles and with the beasts.


More motorcycle rides in May.  Teh German was introduced to the delight that is Gettysburg, PA, which doesn't make me sad since I really like Gettysburg.

Teh Bestie and I started having our own adventures!  We took our bikes to the National Arboretum and I took a millionty photos I never shared.  Oh well.

We also met up with Teh PT Neighbors in Denver for a Neighbor Besties weekend.

First stop: PROST!

And to end May, I completed my first hero WOD challenge (or whatever you want to call it), Murph.  I wanted to die, but I survived.


Teh Terrific Trio

Went to the new and improved Spy Museum with Teh Clique.

In March, I had planned to go down to SC for the Myrtle Beach half marathon, but they gave a virtual option, which I took because of marriage drama and it not being a good time to go.  So I rescheduled my SC visit for June.  It felt weird not parking at our former house, but it was fine.

At the end of the month, we did a photo shoot for a Greyhound connection who is starting a photography business.  He needed some practice and to work out lighting issues, so we were the models.  It was a good time.

Teh German suggested at some point in the early summer that we do the 20 mile bike ride in DC and we signed up with Teh Bestie and Bestie Husband +4.  So we make it a point to ride the bicycles more.


More group motorcycle rides!

I did the running thing.

We watched an old man pee on someone's tire and saw fireworks for 4th of July.

Did another slayer workout, but with friends this time.

The cutest beasts I've ever let live with me kept being cute AF.

A Muppet.

A Monkey.

And a Moose.

In an unfortunate turn of events, Teh German's step-brother passed away and so we had to make an emergency trip to Germany for the funeral.  It was super complicated because of COVID, but we managed.  While we were in Essen, we also made a point to see some German friends.

After we got back from Germany, friends from SC happened to be up for an event for one of their kids so we got to hang out with them for an evening, which was fabulous!  Not just because I won Risk either.

And, continued dog adventures.


Teh Dad and Teh Stepmom came through MD on their way to NY for an event, so we hosted for a few days, which included a trip to the National Aquarium and desserts from Amicci's.

Teh German started track racing on his 2nd motorcycle.
Yup, we're back to being a 3 motorcycle household.

Since my return to MD, I picked up right where I left off with my GEGR volunteering.
But now I'm the chaos coordinator for adoption events, ensuring that every family meets their dogs and that things run smoothly.

<3 Running?

Because of Germany, Teh Bestie postponed her bday gokart celebration, so we finally got to ride gokarts!

We went on a motorcycle ride to a dairy farm that has a creamery and I discovered a new flavor of ice cream that I like.

Because of COVID, many of my 2020 races were deferred and a few were straight up cancelled (RnR Chicago) and so I had to select new race locations.  Since Chicago was cancelled, I opted to do RnR Seattle and I managed to make it into a Sisters Weekend, so Teh Sister and Teh Stepsister joined me in Seattle for the weekend.....  and then 30 days prior to the race, it was cancelled and we already had a hotel and plane tickets and we said fuck it and went anyways.  No one died and it was a good time.

Got back and did more outside things.  To include getting childhood level muddy during a bike ride.


In September, I FINALLY got to do an in-person race again with Teh Bestie: RnR Virginia Beach!  It was terrifying and exciting.  

After a weekend in VA Beach, we worked a few days then headed down to Lusby for the GEGR Greyhound Picnic weekend.

We finally hung something on the walls!  Which was a huge event since it meant that shortly thereafter, the rest of the shit was hung on the walls and it finally looked liked we lived in the house.

Teh German and I found a cool arcade/bowling alley place on a random date night.

Dogs being cats?

The Clique in Gettysburg for Greyhounds in Gettysburg!

Then finally it was the event we'd been prepping for all summer: the DC bike ride!

Gratuitous Sandra photo.


In October, I started down a rabbit hole that I'll never escape from: Ragnar.  Teh Clique and I ran Ragnar Sunset NoVA and I was sold.  A few weeks prior to our race I had actually joined a Ragnar Road New England team with a bunch of strangers I didn't know, then Teh Bestie and Matilda also signed up to go with me!  More on that in a bit.

After NoVA, Teh Bestie went on vacation, but when she got back, we headed straight up to New England for Ragnar Road New England race.  I had my first Amtrak ride and made snow-sacrifices by enjoying the beach in exchange for snow this winter.  I dressed in a unicorn onesie for the non-running portion of the race and it was fabulous being fabulous.  You can read the blog post to see all my feelings on completing a Ragnar after years and years of wanting to do one, but let's just say, there were tears.


We had our first gathering at the end of October!  The wood was wet and the fire was complicated, but there was plenty of snacks ANDDDD we got a visit from a Citadel Sam which never breaks my heart.

Halloween decor.

On Halloween, I gathered with part of Teh Clique and we did the Bay Bridge 10k, which we are now committed to for the next 4 years since it's a 5 piece medal.

Then after the race, I showered and Teh German and I headed to a biker friend's church where he is a pastor for some motorcycle trunk or treat.


We started off November by celebrating our 4th anniversary!  I made reservations at The Capital Grille in DC since we hadn't done anything fancy since we've been in the North.  And let's just talk about the irony of SC Senator TIM SCOTT walking in and having dinner "with" us while we were there!  HA!  Teh German did not encourage my fangirling, but I did sneak a very bad selfie because YOLO bitches.

Fall finally came to MD and I was here for it, erryday, all day.

The absolute scariest part of the year was when Pax and Meri escaped the fence because they were chasing a cat and Pax's big ass broke through the fence and created an escape route for both the cat and the dogs... Thankfully they chased the cat next door and not into the street.  Pax lost a toenail but otherwise, it was just minor scratches to both Pax and Meri.  Sandra just stood in the yard looking pretty the whole time, probably wondering why I was screeching like a banshee.

More in person racing!  This time the RnR DC race.  

Oh and I joined a team of random people for the Ragnar Trail Florida race... and then I became a trail runner.  WHO THE FUCK AM I?!

Because Timo is in constant contact with the motorcycle gang, we've made some friends and we like go out and do stuff together now.  It's cool.  I like it.

A meeting of the minds.

It was finallllllyy peppermint vodka hot chocolate season! 
This can be anytime, but I was out of peppermint vodka and then I found it at Total Wine.

Had my first Poke bowl.  Will do again.

For Thanksgiving, we hosted a Friendsgiving which I brined and cooked a turkey for the first time ever (both the brining and the cooking).  My turkey was BEAUTIFUL and IDK where the photo of it went.  But just trust me, it was gorgeous.

Part of Teh Clique did the Annapolis Turkey Trot and then later was Thanksgiving at Teh Ville 3.0.

Yep, we wore matching shirts.

To "work off" all that Thanksgiving dinner, I completed Chad (another hero workout of 1000 box step ups) the Saturday after Thanksgiving and couldn't touch my calves for a solid week.


About the time I was able to touch my calves again, I was heading down to Florida to complete the Ragnar Trail Florida race with the randos.  #NORAGRATS

I didn't know how much I would enjoy trail running until I actually did it.  Now I'm not sure why I was so afraid of it to begin with (yes, I do, I'm fucking clumsy and sometimes my feet don't lift good).

I got home from FL and started to feel like garbage and asked for antibiotics for a sinus infection and was told they don't like to overprescribe antibiotics and to take some mucinex.  Soooo we headed to SC a few days later for a visit/the Kiawah Half Marathon and I spiked a fever and ended up at urgent care for antibiotics for a sinus infection and a steroid shot so I could complete the half the next day and maybe be a less miserable person since we were visiting friends and I wanted to die a little.

The Kiawah half was HOOOTTTT (70°F) but it was my 2nd fastest half marathon to date.  That's the power of a steroid shot, yall.

My favorite saying

My favorite pre-race nap.

Went to Kiawah, didn't get eaten by a gator.

After we got back from SC, I finally started to feel healthy again, which was good because Christmas saw an uptick of activity for me.

Going to see my first Cirque du Soleil show with Teh Clique!

Christmas Tree runs with people I met in FL.

New watch for Christmas from Teh German!
(praise hands, because that Samsung Galaxy 3 watch only left me frustrated and pissed off)

Christmas day motorcycle rides!

Christmas night light/tree scootin!

Post-Christmas day motorcycle rides with the gang.

And an impromptu hockey date night with Husband.

For NYE, we're hosting a small group for charcuterie and games and staying up past our bedtime to watch the ball drop.


Overall, 2021 was an interesting year.  Full of new adventures by default since we were new to the area, which didn't really hurt our hearts.  I was able to go back to SC twice and Teh German went once.  I really kicked up my workout game this year and added races back into my life (which were sorely missed, to the point that my 2022 race schedule is out of control). 

Teh German got integrated into the motorcycle community here and he has really enjoyed riding in a place with hills and curves.  He bought a 2nd bike specifically for track racing and has gone a few time and enjoyed it very much. 

Pax, Meri, and Sandra are all in good health and continue to drive us both crazy with their antics (Pax) and neediness (Meri) and picky eating (Sandra).  

We look forward to what 2022 will bring and hope your 2021 was just as full as ours was.

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