#jentonyc – day 2

Thank goodness for NYC adrenaline! It got me through day 2! My luggage was supposed to arrive first at 11pm, then 3am, then 6am, so I didn’t sleep very well in fear that I wouldn’t hear the call that my luggage had arrived. We got up early to head for the TODAY show! (My luggage was at the hotel by time we got back, yay!) We were looking forward to this TODAY show because it was the annual Halloween show!

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Yay!!! So excited!!
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After the TODAY show, I picked up my luggage and then Deanna and I went for our last run before the big day on Sunday! And of course, we went to Central Park! The day was absolutely beautiful, and NYC actually gets a fall season, so the trees were especially gorgeous! I ran a 5k with a smile on my face the entire time, such a dream come true!

After we completed our run, we made our way to the TCS NYC Marathon finish line! A little more than 48 hours later, we would both be crossing that line as NYC Marathon Finishers!

After our run, we headed back to our hotel to get ready for the rest of our day!

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Yes, both slices were for me. . .

My friend, Stephanie, lives in NYC, and was around when I was in town so we met up! She treated me to some delicious tea while we had a chance to catch up on the last 8 years. Stephanie and I went to OCU together, where SAI brought us together. This was one of the highlights of my weekend! Stephanie is a beacon of light and getting to spend a little time with her was encouraging as I headed into marathon weekend!

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Selfie with StephJo!

Deanna and I were lucky to be one of the few Team for Kids runners that were able to participate in the NYC Marathon Opening Ceremonies. We got to meet other participants that fundraised and trained at the same time we put in our efforts. It was neat to visit with first-timers as well as the veteran Team for Kids runners.

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It was so cool to meet the group I’ve been connected with online for so many months!

Before the ceremony officially started, we were delightfully surprised with getting to meet kids that have directly benefited from our fundraising efforts. (All the feels, y’all!!)

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The opening ceremonies began with Team for Kids as we marched around the NYC Marathon finish line, and then a group from every country represented in the marathon followed. Each group carried their country’s flag, some of each group dressed in their traditional attire, and most groups showed off some musical and/or dancing traditions. WOW! It was incredible!

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So, Deanna and I were hungry so we decided to leave the opening ceremonies before they were officially over. (And we were trying to limit the amount of time on our feet!) As we were leaving the grandstand, I spotted my good friend Meb. Just like when I met him in July, I was starstruck! I’m sure Deanna thought I was crazy, all I could say was, “Meb, Meb, Meb, Meb,” as I poked her shoulder to get her attention.

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Meb wished ME good luck after taking this picture!! What?! 

Meb went to take center stage and we left for dinner! We met up with Deanna’s husband, her daughter, and her daughter’s friend. (Again, have I mentioned how cool it was to travel with real New Yorkers?!) We ate at a wonderful meatball restaurant, they even encouraged marathon runners to eat there! (I didn’t mention I was a Royals fan while I was there…)

After dinner, it was bed time! Friday night was our night to sleep because on Saturday night our excitement would keep us up! (Okay, and the fear that we would miss all the alarms and wake-up call with the time change!)

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