Tag Archives: north carolina

OBX Labor Day Weekend

obx_labor_day_2014_22We were ready for a long weekend on the Outer Banks, but first, Merri Beth and I had few errands to run in Raleigh. Sunsets and long walks on the beach were on hold for a few short hours.

We’d missed back to school shopping earlier in the month, which for us, includes a new pair of running shoes.We went to Fleet Feet on Wade Avenue to get fitted and score some new running kicks. After that, a quick lunch at Whole Foods (to-go) and we were off to get the kids from school. Continue reading

2014 Salsa Garden is Taking Root

ramsgate_garden_01The salsa garden has been planted and is ready for the 2014 growing season here in North Carolina. I planted the garden in late April. I usually do it on Good Friday, but I’d been traveling a lot and the winter was pretty hard. Luckily, I had been preparing my soil a few weeks ahead of time (tilling, fertilizing, weeding, etc.) so it was easy to get the plants in the ground.

I got my plants from Logan’s Trading Company in Downtown Raleigh. Zander went with me to help select the plants. Actually, we made a pit stop at Wise Recycling to cash in our aluminium cans and made $53.00 before going to Logan’s. The plants looked great. Zander wanted to try some pink girl tomatoes, so we’ll see what those are like this year. Unfortunately, they were out of red and orange peppers so we went with more golden peppers instead.

We had a boys-out lunch at Bad Daddy’s Burger Bar before heading back home. After we got home, I did some final garden preparations and got the plants in the ground by the end of the weekend. That was the last weekend in April, so let’s fast forward to mid-May.

Garden update May 17-18

The salsa garden was well-hydrated earlier this week. A cold front came through on Wednesday/Thursday and left us with 5 ½ inches of rain. After that, lots of sunshine and cooler temperatures. I decided that it was time to cage all of the plants and worked in the garden.

I tried a new strategy when planting the garden rows this year. Instead of organizing the plants east to west like I’ve done in years past, I decided to try north to south and group them in rows of two. You’ll see how it looks in the pictures below, but the theory is that it will provide more access to my plants.

ramsgate_garden_03I also planted less plants this year to help with spacing them out and will be experimenting with a few other things as well. Here’s what the line-up looks like:

  • Tomatoes:
    • Better Boy (3)
    • Big Boy (4)
    • Celebrity (6)
    • Early Girls (8)
    • Large Cherry (4)
    • Patio (8 in pots)
    • Pink Girls (2 in the garden / 2 in pots)
    • Roma (4 in the garden / 4 in pots)
    • Rutgers (4)
  • Peppers:
    • Big Bertha (8)
    • Camelot (8)
    • Golden Peppers (6)
    • Jalapeños (3 in pots)

One of my experiments is with the Roma’s. I’ve got half of them in pots and the other half in the garden. I also reduced the amount of cherry tomatoes this year. I had over 1,000 last season which was a lot to deal with. I reduced the amount of plants by half and moved them to the edge of the garden in case they get ginormous again.

I’ve already got a few blossoms on the plants, and most tomatoes are already knee high. Hopefully it will be another great year for the salsa garden.

Bucket List Check Off: The North Carolina State Fair

While not on my original fall bucket listnc_state_fair, I had to add the North Carolina State Fair to the must-do things in Southwest Raleigh. With almost 1 million visitors this year, the fair is a familiar time of year for my family. Attractions, exhibits, food, rides, games, and more are a great way to enjoy a nice fall day in Raleigh, North Carolina. Continue reading

OBX Sandbars and Board Shorts Day Seven: Total Tourists

obx_foj13_d7_23After two full days on the beach and an awesome evening of fireworks, it was time for a recovery day. Sort of. Welcome to day seven on the Outer Banks, Friday, July 5. We were going to be tourists today, and there’s nothing wrong with that. On Monday, we did a day trip to Ocracoke and Hatteras Island, which was a great time despite the rain. It was time to check off a few of those attractions that you always drive by, but never go to. Today was our day. Continue reading

How we spent Thanksgiving 2012

Skinny TurkeyOur Thanksgiving break started off hectic—is there any other way? For me, it started off on a chilly morning running the hills of Wakefield (North Raleigh). I was running the Skinny Turkey half marathon. It was my third half marathon of November after running the City of Oaks and the Outer Banks.

The race started at 7:30 am and it was a 30 minute drive from the house to Wakefield High School, where the race started and finished. I was awake early, around 6:00 am, leaving the house by 6:45 am. I decided to run in long sleeves because it was below 40° and a bit breezy. The course was hilly but manageable. I was expecting a decent time and was happy with the 1 hour 44 minute and 14 second finish. Continue reading

Another great Outer Banks Half Marathon

OBX November sunset

OBX November sunset

Happy belated Veteran’s Day. We spent Veteran’s Day weekend on the Outer Banks of North Carolina. I was ready to run my second Outer Banks half marathon. Race season kicked off last weekend with the City of Oaks marathon. I ran the half in 1 hour and 43 minutes. This weekend, I was looking for a better time, but was concerned because of a leg and foot injury that’s been nagging me.

We arrived on the OBX Friday evening, November 9, 2012 to a freak blackout. As we drove through Mann’s Harbor, we noticed it was really dark. The radio was talking about widespread power outages from the Virginia border all the way to Hatteras Island. We noticed Roanoke Island was pitch black except for the airport, as we traveled over the Virginia Dare Memorial Bridge. Continue reading

And the Fall 2012 race season has begun

The Fall race season kicked off this weekend with the City of Oaks Marathon. I ran my 15th half marathon, The Rex Healthcare half marathon.

This race is always interesting because of daylight savings—usually plenty of rest! But daylight savings seems pretty pointless in the 21st century, but regardless, we still have to deal with the false sense of time change. (That’s for you Damon!)

Caitlyn's first half marathon

Caitlyn’s first half marathon

At about 5:00am in the morning, the sound of thunder woke us up. Who ordered the race day thunderstorm in the early morning? The rain kept the temperatures up. The predicted 38º ended up being 42º – which was fine by me.

Mom, MB, and Caitlyn were on-hand to watch the race. They saw me start under the NC State Belltower, then were at the 10k finish line (6.2 miles) to send me off for the remainder of the half marathon. Continue reading

September Surf Sessions on the Outer Banks

A week of surf on the Outer Banks will do wonders for your soul. I headed out to Kill Devil Hills, NC on Tuesday, September 4, leaving Raleigh, NC after dinner and arriving at the beach just before midnight. The swell forecast from Hurricane Leslie was looking very promising. And the wind (direction) looked like it was going to cooperate over the next few days.

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Continue reading

Life in Board Shorts Day Five – Fourth of July

View from the beach chairOops, we slept in today. Not typical for us. We were out a little later than expected last night at Elizabeth’s Cafe. We’re usually pretty eager to get on the beach early on the Fourth of July. Merri Beth, Zander, and I managed to get to the beach by 11:00 am—not too bad considering our lack of alarm clock.

We packed up the Jeep, lunch included, and headed out. At first, I was thinking Nags Head would be the spot. But as we drove down the beach road, the beach accesses were packed. We turned around and headed back to Kill Devil Hills for the day. We found a great spot that just had a few cars at it. Within the next two hours, it was full. We got lucky. Continue reading