Photo Diary: Detroit

Dec 23, 2016

I signed up for the Detroit Talmer International Half Marathon mid gestation, cockily assuming I'd have the time (giggles) and energy (cackles manically) to give birth, heal, return to work, all while training for a half marathon. So wrong. So very, very wrong. If you are a new mama and have done this, HOW?! Instead, I opted for the 5k and low-low-lowered my expectations of anything close to PR worthy because let's face it, baby snuggles trumps training (in my book) any day.

This was Owen's first flight -- he did great and our seat mates both ways (he fell asleep shortly after taxing to/from with his trusty wubbanub) were kind, which helped alleviate the parental stress of having a seven month old on board. Our seat mate on the way home can never unhear my horrific singing voice, but otherwise was left unscathed :) By some stroke of houdini magic we took one suitcase, jamming baby related gear in the car seat bag  (see it in action in the video below), and by the same luck, did not incur a (very) overweight bag fee, hey now!

We did not plan our Airbnb sleeping arrangements properly (insert argument, HERE) so Owen and I co-slept and Mark "we-don't-need-a-travel-crib" (we did) slept on the couch. Which, poetically was a loveseat because -- mean wife.

Jennifer graciously carted us to and fro across the state on an adventure that left us utterly spent at days end, filled us to the gills with great food, babysat while we went to see The Accountant (who gave her a run for her unpaid money) and despite the fact we counted her as a pack mule for our hefty child, his belongings, or both hasn't disowned us. She good people.

Greenfield Village -- we spent the better part of a full day exploring, much to Mark's history loving delight while I count renting a wagon was the best $5 I've ever spent. We walked till the brink of hanger and mercifully stumbled upon Eagle Tavern whereupon Jennifer won best lunch choice: savory noodles with roasted veggies.

Belle Isle -- having run through here during before (2014 Marathon) it was a no brainer to return. The waterfront views are breathtaking and the park is a secluded gem, dotted with people, perfect for a picnic.

Graffiti Alley -- definitely worth checking out. I was too busy making fun of Jennifer who had been searching for it since she moved there. She was giddy. 

Pinwheel Bakery -- this is one of those places you stumble upon and  settle in for a long chat. We got coffee and pastries and did just that, then strolled into the cutest kids store whereupon with all the toys, because you have to.

New Palace Bakery  -- walked in and turned into a giddy schoolgirl with a severe sweet tooth, leaving with a heaping bag of goodness (including packi!!) that was truly ambitious for three people to consume. But we did and have mercy, so good.

Nick's Pizza -- garlic butter crust, well done. Yesssss.

Jolly Pumpkin -- great space with super yummy food. Truffle fries and grilled chicken pizza were the perfect post race meal.

Frittata -- brunch + solid lattes. What more do you need? Nothing.

Moti Mahal -- some of the best Indian I've had to date. Bonus points because we got take out and ate in our comfy clothes.

Detroit Free Press Marathon/Half Marathon/5k/Kids Fun Run -- 33:49 {photos} I was anxious and excited when it came to start time. The weather was brisk, as we weaved our way around to the waterfront and while I definitely felt sore/creaky, there were some moments when I felt great and overall I'm so glad I ran, and equally glad I did the 5k. For the time being I'm taking a break from racing, getting back to basics making strides to return to my habit of working out 5-6 days a week (instead of setting my alarm and hitting snooze, daily). If you have any tips on making that a reality, I'm all ears.

Lessons learned travelling (via air) with a seven month old: 

  1. Set your expectations low then lower them some more.  Expecting your kid to behave perfectly all the time is setting you both up for failure. 
  2. Keep an eye on feeding/nap schedules. We played fast and loose and found ourselves in the grocery store paying far too much for glorified trial size formula because we stayed out longer than anticipated and didn't pack enough. So, whatever you pack (diapers, wipes, snacks, formula) pack double. We left formula and a few bottles of water in the car from then on and it worked out great.
  3. Take advantage of pre-board to get settled before take off. We let Owen play on the seat and explore (the window shade provided solid in flight entertainment).
  4. Gate check is your best friend. We brought our car seat and I crammed the remaining bag space with diapers (disposable when we travel), wipes, extra bottles, baby carrier, etc.
  5. Plan sleeping arrangements in advance based on your child's sleep preferences. Think travel crib/pack n' play, sound machine, etc. We foolishly bought a travel bed in desperation after our first night only to return it a day later. 
  6. Bring a bottle, plenty of snacks and a few toys (one new to them) for the airport and flight, being creative with your surroundings (see #3)
  7. Travel as light as possible: 
    • suitcase -- we all shared one (large) rolling suitcase
    • diaper bag -- packed with the usual, times two (see #2)
    • car seatbag -- the bag left plenty of room to stash excess we couldn't get into our suitcase, all while keeping our car seat protected.
    • purse -- I brought it along and never used it. Moving forward I'll stash my wallet in the diaper bag. 
    • baby carrier -- our trip was five days so we opted to use the baby carrier and rented a wagon (best $5 I've spent) at Greenfield Village (where we did the most walking).

ODP: Inaugural Flight from Marcia Ginger on Vimeo.

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