Category Archives: April – Memphis

Thankful Thursdays

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As I prepare to head back to Memphis today, it makes this past week in Zionsville feel only like a mini-vacation.  But I know when I drive over that Arkansas bridge tonight, I’m just a visitor.  Just a visitor, but am forever grateful for what this city gave to me.

Starting in 2006, the walls of Williford at Rhodes College gave me my first home away from home.  I made friends, found sisters, drank too much, slept too little, studied too much, slept too little and found some footing on my own.

Picture-Perfect

Picture-Perfect

I cried when my family left me but quickly found a new family in my basketball teammates and Chi Omega sisters.

Chi O

In 2008, I hung up my high-tops and found InsideOut Gym as my tiny escape from the Rhodes “bubble”.  I spun, rowed, lifted and boxed.  And quickly found another family in the staff and members.  Later that year, I ran my first marathon.

Support Crew Round 1

I continued to explore the world of fitness, branching out into teaching and working at the desk.  I even “trained” some friends at the Rhodes gym in preparation for big events like spring breaks and weddings.

I lived in my first “big girl” house, learning the joys of house parties and burglaries (RIP Guitar Hero).

I learned how to run.  And then how to race.  Getting second place in my age group in the Road Race Series, and a PR in the St. Jude Half Marathon.

Princess after my PR!

I fell in love here.  With a boy.  With the river.  With the city.  With running.  With the south.  With my girlfriends.  And I am forever grateful to my Memphis people who taught me a thing or two, hugged me when I needed it, bought me a drink, took me on the best date of my life, and shared the love of this city with me.  You’ve got a lot to be proud of, don’t let Forbes or TJ Simers tell you otherwise.

I love memphis.

Downtown at Sunset.

The Old Bridge

View from the monorail.

Mississippi River Park.

Grindhouse.

Don’t stop believin’ – in the Grizz, or in the Mem.

First time courtside!

Sunset from the Madison Rooftop.

Best date ever. Iris, finally.

Memphis and Midtowners, InsideOut Members, Owners, Staff and Instructors.  Grizzlies, The Mississippi, Rhodes, Trezevant, Harbert.  Thank you!

What about your city are you thankful for?

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April Challenge: St. Jude

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Yesterday I knocked a big one off my Memphis Farewell List!  Several of my running friends are employees at St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital and I thought it would be fun for us to meet up for lunch.  I also managed to work out a tour of the campus with Princess.

St Jude Campus - the heart of Memphis

Elizabeth walked with Norman and I around the hospital, a surprisingly happy place with it’s brightly colored walls, floors and ceilings, and patients’ artwork hanging around everywhere.  One of my favorite pieces of artwork was the ABC wall.  Each letter was assigned to a different patient and the child was to create a poem, story or piece of artwork corresponding to that letter.

V is for Vomet

Next we went into one of the chapels that included this beautiful stained glass image of St. Jude – the patron saint of lost causes.  It was a very peaceful space that included all types of spiritual readings and a prayer book for people to write in.

St. Jude

Another favorite spot of mine was the research tower where the national flags of all the St. Jude researchers are hung.  It’s really an unbelievable sight to see so many nationalities working together against one common cause.

All the nationalities of St. Jude

After the tour, we met up with Becca and Jen for lunch in the cafeteria.  The Kay Cafe features a lot of produce grown locally in St. Jude’s own garden (a health precaution for the sick kiddos) and also provides a space for the patients, families, staff and doctors to all eat together in one place.

All St. Jude Half Marathon Participants!

I absolutely enjoyed the outing with my friends and the tour of the hospital served as a great reminder of the tough fight going on in  many children’s lives and the pivotal role this city plays in the battle and also why I love the St. Jude Marathon so much!

Click here for some quick facts about the hospital.  If you’d like to take a tour, they’re offered most weekdays at 10 am or 1 pm.  Click here for more info.

 

Happy middle of the week!!  Look for a mass posting of this past week’s activities – mama’s visit, gym party, and maybe some running!

April Challenge: Cafe Society

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Guess who got dressed up in real clothes for her Memphis adventure last night….Me!  I even went a step beyond “real” clothes and put on a dress, wedges and took my hair down out of its ponytail because I had a date!  Calm down, not quite as exciting as you’re thinking – it was a double celebratory date at Cafe Society with some of my favorite gym people.

We clean up well 🙂

It was a treat to see everyone clean and in nice clothes for a change.  We were celebrating my acceptance to graduate school and my friend Ada’s acceptance into a residency program here in Memphis.  We talked and laughed over wine and three delicious courses of dinner.  I started with a light spinach salad with a goat cheese crouton – fantastic.  For dinner I chose the same thing Kim and then Ada ordered – a seafood and tomato dish.

Shrimp, scallops, mussels and salmon

My dinner was so good!  I’m not one to skip over fresh seafood in favor of veggies but that tomato stew concoction was so delicious.  There were bits of crunch and a bite of sweetness too – a crazy combination but wonderful.  There was an endless amount of seafood – I feel like usually I’m wishing there are more bites of shrimp in my dish but not this one!  I filled up quickly and was able to take a box home for tonight’s dinner!

My favorite course was next – CHOCOLATE!  We decided to split two desserts between the four of us.  The chocolate and cinnamon bread pudding and a very decadent chocolate bon bon.

Bread pudding

The bread pudding was ok – a little thick for my bread pudding tastes, but I did enjoy the cinnamon kick.  It made me think of the best bread pudding I’ve had in my entire existence in Portrush, Northern Ireland.  That’s all the detail I can give you, there are no words for how good it was.

Chocolate Bon Bon

The bon bon was more my style – chocolatey and very rich.  It wasn’t as shockingly sweet as the bread pudding and I enjoyed the tartness of the berries with it.  It was a fantastic date with good food, fun friends and a nice treat to be at one of Memphis’ fancier eateries.  I went home and sat on the porch swing for a while, swinging off my buzz and re-hydrating.  Good thing I’ve been running recently (and I swear I have, even though you may not have heard about it on here!) – those stories coming soon (I hope).

Enjoy your night and GO GRIZZ!