During the Summer of 2013, I was asked to lead a marathon pace group for the local running store. For about four months, I met the group on Saturdays to lead them on their long runs. The program ended with running the Pensacola Marathon on 11/10/13.
I was hesitant at first to make the commitment since the runs began at 6am. That meant some Saturdays I would get off at 2am and turn around and have to lead the run at 6am. I decided to give it a go. I am glad I did. It was a very rewarding experience to lead a group of people through training for their first marathon. It felt good to “give back” to the running community.
The photograph above is my training group at the start of the Pensacola Marathon. You can see me holding the “4:30” sign.
On 02/18/13, Brian turned 19 years old. It was President’s Day, so Brian had the day off of school. However, Brian did have to go to work at Papa Johns later that night. When Mike woke up he gave Brian his gifts. Brian got a pair of Oakley sunglasses, a bottle of cologne and some special headlights for his car.
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On 01/26/13, Mike and Susan attended another Mall Ball. The ball is a fundraiser for the local children’s hospital. Mike and Susan were joined by their friends, Ron and Brandy. While at the ball, Mike saw one of his coworkers, Nicole and her husband, Eric.
We look forward to the Mall Ball every year. About 50 vendors come out and serve a broad selection of food. Here is a photograph of Mike, Susan, Ron and Brandy before they went to the Mall Ball. Click on the photograph to view the entire gallery.
For Christmas this year, we stayed at our home in Pensacola, FL. Mike’s mom and stepdad drove over from New Orleans to celebrate with us. Mike had to work until 2am on Christmas Eve. Shortly after Mike went to bed, the boys got up to see if Santa came. Santa must have made a very quick visit, but he did come. Brian got a nice camera. Aaron got the new iPod Touch, some video games and some clothes. Susan got a Coach purse, a box of goodies from Victoria’s Secret, some FSU clothing and a linen set. Mike got some Bose headphones for running, a FSU cooler, some clothes to wear to school and some Vibram Fivefingers. Mike and Susan gave his mom and stepdad tickets to Cirque du Soleil. On the right is a photograph of Brian playing with Forrest and his stocking.
On the day after Christmas, we traveled to Mobile, AL, to see some of Mike’s family. We have not seen many of them in almost ten years. The day was nice. The boys enjoyed playing pool while the adults sat around and caught up. To the left is a group photograph that we took right before we left.
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On May 24, 2012, Brian earned an award for excellence in reading during his junior year. Mike and Susan were able to attend to the ceremony. They were very proud of Brian. Click on the photograph to view the entire gallery.
In 2012, Aaron’s birthday was the same day as the Pensacola Friday night parade. We took Aaron and two of his friends to the parade. We also brought Forrest for the first time. Bringing Forrest ended up being a bad idea though. Forrest did not like the loud noises. The boys did very well catching beads and other items. Mike brought a ladder to help the boys get attention over other people. Aaron enjoyed his 13th birthday. Afterward we ate some pie to celebrate the day. Click on the photograph to view the gallery.
On October 29, 2011, Brian attended the homecoming dance for his junior year of high school. Brian took his girlfriend, Allyson, to the dance with him. This was Brian’s first high school dance. His mom was very proud and took several photographs right before the dance.
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On August 20, 2011, we attended our first police ball. The ball was coordinated by Michael, who was the treasurer with the local lodge of the Fraternal Order of Police. About 100 people attended the ball. The mayor of Pensacola, the chief of police and two city council members also attended the event. The FOP presented awards to four officers. The event was really nice. Mike looks forward to planning the next one. To the right is a photograph of Mike and Susan at the ball. Click on the photograph to view the entire gallery.
On February 17th and 18th, we celebrated Brian’s 17th birthday and Aaron’s 12th birthday. When Aaron got home from school on his birthday, we took him to Academy Sports and bought him a basketball goal and an outfit. On the morning of the 18th, we let Brian open his gift, which was a Sony car stereo. Brian also got an outfit for school. Brian is saving his money to add an amplifier and subwoofers to his car stereo system. On the 19th, we let Aaron have a small birthday party at the house. Several of Aaron’s friends from school and the neighborhood came over. The boys played several games of basketball. After a few games, the boys ate hot dogs and birthday cake. The boys also threw water balloons at each other. Here is a photograph of Aaron searching for his next victim. Click on the photograph to view the entire gallery.
On 02/11/12, Mike and Aaron ran in the Mardi Gras 5k fun run. The run benefited the Special Olympics. Mike decided to dress in Mardi Gras attire for the run. The run was unique as the route was entirely on a golf course. During the route, you looped some areas three times, which became confusing at times. In fact, Mike thought he was finished when he still had about a quarter of a mile to go. Mike ended up finishing fourth overall. He received a trophy and a gift certificate for a restaurant. Aaron ran pretty fast as well. In fact, near the end he passed his former P.E. teacher! Susan and Forrest cheered on the runners. Forrest wasn’t sure what to do with all of the attention. Click on the photograph to view the entire gallery.