It is an absolutely, positively beautiful Sunday here in Iowa. The sun is shining brightly in the sky, the temperature is a cheery 75 degrees, and the slight breeze lifts the floral scents of blooming trees and flowers throughout the air. It is amazing how the weather can affect mood; for so long (seemingly forever), the days have been cold, rainy, and dreary, and I find myself in low spirits. With today’s lovely forecast, my spirits are soaring high. Who knows how long this gorgeous weather will last, as thunderstorms are forecasted throughout the next week, but I rejoice for this hiatus of routine.
I awoke this morning bright & early, as myself, Dad, and Gayle (as well as other members of the Solon Girls’ Track Team) were participating in the Ronald McDonald Family Fun Run/Walk. After a warm, energizing breakfast of Peanut Butter Oatmeal (Nature’s Path Flax Plus Instant Oatmeal + 1 Tablespoon Maranatha Crunchy Peanut Butter + 1 Tablespoon ground flaxseed + 1 teaspoon chia seed + 1/2 cup milk), I was ready to run a 5K!
The race was interesting. The start was so crowded. My dad and I had planned to run a few miles together before he turned around to walk with Gayle, and it took us a while after the start to catch up with each other. Dad told me to just wait for the Bix’s start…he said it is insanely crowded. Anyway, I could never settle into a consistent pace throughout the race because of all the other people; I felt as if I had to constantly manuever around runners and walkers. It was also strange to run on an unfamiliar course. I am accustomed to running on Solon’s Nature Trail, where I am familiar with the location of the mile markings. For today’s race, I only had my watch to help me estimate the miles, which was strange! Overall, though, the race was an experience, and I started my day off with a workout!
After the race, my Dad, Gayle, and I headed to the Co-op to pick up ingredients for lunch. Pasta with tuna, cherry tomatoes, olives, capers, red onion, and garlic (Pasta Eolie) was to be the main event, and crunchy bruschetta topped with tomatoes, garlic, and extra virgin olive oil the appetizer/side. This tuna pasta is served at room temperature (or cold the next day), and sounded perfectly refreshing and crisp for a warm Spring day. We also picked out two flavors of Spanish tortas: the traditional Sweet Olive Oil and Seville Orange (made with crystallized orange and orange essence, sprinkled with sugar), my choice. I have been eyeing these tortas on every visit to the grocery store and was excited to finally give them a try.
Lunch was relaxing, and after our bellies were filled, my dad and I set out to tackle mowing the grass. I have never mowed before, and it is an arm workout! I was sweatin’ by the time we finished the yard. After mowing, the three of us hopped in the car and drove to watch Gayle’s son’s soccer game. It was wonderful to be outside, and I worked on my homework (Hamlet critical analysis research paper…what a mouthful!) while watching the match. Before heading back home , we stopped at Heyn’s Ice Cream for an afternoon treat. Mmm…I ordered a small Raspberry Yogurt Shake, which was deliciously cool, sweet, and refreshing.
Now, back at home, I write this post before we embark again into Iowa City for dinner at El Banditos, a Mexican restaurant serving fresh and creative fare. It has been a day filled with fun, family, and sunshine. I couldn’t ask for a more perfect Sunday!
Happy Mother’s Day!