What I’m Longing For

The truth is, we are far too consumed by our lives to pay attention to the things that really matter. We get wrapped up in our cell phones, televisions  emails, Facebook, blogs and Twitter to the point that we can’t even fathom, “What would I do without these things?” The truth is, we don’t really need them like we think I do. And I, for one, often find myself longing for a simpler time.

Apple Butter Festival 2012

It’s fall, one of my favorite times of the year, and I have spent the past two weekends searching for simplicity. I need to get away from the noise and static of everyday life and reconnect with not only nature, but what really matters – family, friends, nature, good company and good, whole food.

Two weeks ago, I visited the Apple Butter Festival and the Ned Moser cabin, built in the 1800’s. I have since been longing to reconnect with the simplicity of the pioneer times.

I sometimes wish I lived in a time when we cooked all of our meals over an open fire or hearth. The campfire brings people together, meals used to take longer to prepare, whole families used to join in on the cooking and whole communities used to come together to eat. No TV’s, no computers, no grabbing dinner on the go.

Early settlers drank primarily apple cider because their water was not always safe to consume. They made their cider with a press by hand from bruised and damaged apples. They drank from deerskin cups, which they crafted themselves.

There were no indoor restrooms.

And they kept all of their vegetables, fruits, meats and cheeses cool by storing them in an underground root cellar. These are all things the early settlers would have built on their own, with their own two hands. They had to survive on the land with the tools and resources they could find or make on their own. We have lost so much of that today. We want everything fast, easy, convenient, cheap – and it is taking a massive toll on our health to harvest and eat highly processed, highly contaminated foods.

But there was warmth and comfort and a true sense of community and family. This place felt like home, even though I had never set foot inside the cabin before.

Each board and nail was carefully constructed by hand – not like today where you can order a house and practically have it mailed to you – to look like every other house on the block. Not this cabin-

People often say to me, “Yeah right, you couldn’t live like that unless you really had to.”  But, I disagree. I have always felt a strong connection to the simplicity of a time that has long since come and gone. I have always loved to touch, feel and be in the presence of old things – whether they be structures or items or works of art. Sometimes I feel as if I belong there rather than here. We all came from these times, why do we seem to forget them so quickly? Sure, I would miss some modern conveniences like cell phones or computers, but what do they matter, really? Sometimes I feel like a part of me still belongs in the past. Can you imagine looking out of your home you built with your own two hands at this, everyday?

October 2012

There is so much beauty to be witnessed, even in life that has passed.

How do you feel about days gone by? Do you long for them or a simpler time? Do you ever feel the need to disconnect, unplug and decompress? Tell me in the comments!

Until the next mile marker,

A Thanksgiving Day Tradition: Where the Turkey Just Has to Wait!

For my family, racing has become a part of our Thanksgiving Day tradition. In particular, we run the Flying Feather Four Miler race. This race is so much fun and a great way to spend Thanksgiving morning.
I started running this race two years ago with my Original Running Buddy (Chrissy) and my mom:
Chrissy, Me, Mr. Turkey and Mom before the Flying Feather 2009.
Me and Mom before the race in 2009.
And last year, it was a regular Lucky 13 affair:
The Lucky 13’s after the Flying Feather in 2010.
Organized by M3S Sports, the Flying Feather course tours the Glacier Ridge Metro Park in Dublin, Ohio and is serenely beautiful. I love to run there with the winding trails, rolling hills and peaceful scenery. I usually get a good glimpse of Ohio wildlife in the fall – birds and small critters like squirrels and groundhogs. Runner’s World names Flying Feather as one of the Top 6 Thanksgiving Day races in the country and nothing I have found compares to the awesome race-day swag! All participants get a long sleeve Technical running shirt; hat and gloves; a Finisher’s Medal to show off at the table later; food and beverages at the finish line and – the real favorite – a bottle of Georges Duboeuf Beaujolais-Villages wine for your Thanksgiving Table (or cookies for those under 21).
Yes, friends. An entire bottle of wine for each participant:   
Mom, Mollie and Me with the Coveted Bottle of Wine in 2010.
The Flying Feather has made Thanksgiving Day one of my favorite holidays (just second to the Fourth of July when I got engaged to my husband, Michael), and I have beautiful memories of the last two years. It is strange to me that even though I have only participated in this race for two years, is is prevalent in my mind as the only way to spend Thanksgiving.
Even Mom put the Turkey Day preparations on hold for a couple of hours to cross the Finish Line:
My Mom loved this race as much as I do.

In fact, I was recently interviewed by Amy Saunders with The Columbus Dispatch about what this race has become to me and my family. You can find the complete article by Saunders HERE and below is what I had to say:

Mollie and I will run the Flying Feather again this year, along with our friends of the Lucky 13’s. I know it will be bittersweet for me because Mom won’t be there, and I know how badly she would have wanted to be. In fact, all of Thanksgiving won’t be the same without her. I know she is running with me and Mollie, in our hearts, but I will miss her smiling face, her cheering us on, and not to mention her turkey, stuffing and mashed potatoes. It will be a different Thanksgiving for our family, and I hope we can still make Mom proud by carrying on the one tradition she became so much a part of – racing on Thanksgiving Day.
As always, my Dad will be there to cheer us on and this year, he is volunteering at the event along with my Aunt Beth, who has never been to one of our races. It is definitely the start of something wonderful, I know, and Mom will be smiling to see us all there.
And, in the spirit of true family tradition, even Beth is putting the turkey day cooking on hold to spend a little time at the races. Mom wouldn’t have it any other way.
Until the next mile marker,