I know it has been a long time since I put something up on the blog. Totally unlike me ;-) Things have been crazy. Some good some bad.
Let's start with work. Work for me has been good. There was a couple weeks in there when I was unsure of myself and my abilities. But things are rolling now. I have been there 74 days! Like most things, sometimes it feels like I have been there forever and other times it feels like I started yesterday. We have changed our name from Logic Marketing to AREA203 Marketing. Here is our new web-site, please check it out!
Work for Andy has been a little different. On September 19th the owner of the Trek Store of Chattanooga informed Andy that the store was having serious financial difficulties AND could no longer afford to keep their Sales Manager (Andy). The Trek Store went onto explain to Andy that it was a business decision and they were extremely happy with Andy and his performance. Initially, I wasn't going to say anything in a public forum about our situation. I thought it would be in poor taste to be bitter about something we had no control over. Unfortunately, over the past couple weeks, we have discovered the Trek Store Chattanooga has been bad mouthing Andy and spreading a ton of rumors about the situation. To set the record straight-- Andy did NOT receive a severance package. He was informed on Saturday the 19th that he would be paid through the end of his last week (September 25th). Additionally, Andy's last "week of work" was Interbike in Las Vegas. The Trek Store refused to let Andy go to the biggest bike expo on company time. If Andy wanted to go to Interbike (for the Trek Store) he was going to have to use his vacation time AND it was an out of pocket expense for us. We thought it would be a good investment for the Trek Store and good PR for them as well. We bought a plane ticket and a hotel room; only after it was too late to get our money back, they informed Andy he was going to be laid off (the day before he flew out to Las Vegas). Second, unemployment is something EVERY employer pays into when you hire an employee. An employer does not START paying unemployment when the employee has been laid off. There is a "bank" of money where unemployment is drawn from. Not that it is any of Trek Store's business, but Andy is on unemployment through IL, not TN. Finally, I find it to be rather arrogant and asinine to have a previous employer keeping "tabs" on your after they have laid you off. If they were that concerned about how Andy would support our family, they should have kept him on as an employee rather than laying him off. Maybe they should spend less time trolling the Internet for Andy and more time trying to repair the damage they have caused. This is the last thing I am going to say about this subject, I do not think Trek, as a parent company, is bad or makes poor decisions. I think the Trek Store Chattanooga has made bad decision after bad decision and has not taken into account the southern market/southern mentality like they should have. The Trek Store Chattanooga has driven away business because management (excluding Andy) is rude, arrogant, and short-sighted.
Ok now that is said, back to the fun stuff :)
Marathon training is going really really well. Andy has always coached me for triathlon, so I asked him to train me for the St. Jude Marathon (that is coming up in 3 weeks :O). The training I have been doing is much different from the training I have done for marathons in the past. In the past, I would build up slow over 18 weeks to long steady runs and then finish the training with a sense of "being prepared." The way Andy is training me is very different. First, I get my week's schedule 1 week at a time. Second, the workouts I am doing are based around heart rate and are shorter and more intense. Finally, each workout makes me feel stronger and stronger. Before I would get a schedule for the full 18 weeks, long workouts (that I would usually skip 'cuz they were boring), and every other workout would seem like a failure. I got a new pair of shoes last night too! They are so cool. I ran in them today for the first time and LOVED them. So excited. I am running in a pair of Saucony Progrid Triumph 7. Our friend Zach Winchester recommended these for me. Check out his blog...
Our friends Shawn Watson and Courtney Bartels came down last weekend for a killer climbing trip. Courtney flew into Nashville from Boulder, CO and Shawn (on his way down from IL) picked her up at the airport. They drove down to HorsePens 40 (just outside Birmingham, Alabama) for 1 day of bouldering, before heading back up to Chatta-vegas to hang with us. We met them at Rock Town on Pigeon Mountain in Georgia. It was Courtney and my first time in Rock Town. We had a blast. Headed back to our house for some wicked awesome steaks Shawn cooked on the coals of our grill. The next day we went to LRC for some more bouldering. 2 days in a row of climbing for me = raw red fingertips. ouch. But we LOVED every minute of grimacing about our bloody tips. :) After climbing we grabbed some awesome Mexican food in Soddy and had a HUGE bonfire at our house. The last day we hiked off our back yard onto Flat Top Mountain. It was a first for me. Andy has drug his Dad and Wes on this hike before. Very cool to see what our back yard really looks like. We got back to the house and said our good-byes. We were really sad to see Shawn and Courtney go. They are our closest friends and miss hanging out with them so much.
Our next big adventure is Thanksgiving dinner. We invited Jacqueline and our neighbors for dinner. Guest list: Me, Andy, Jacqueline, Deni, Lloyd, Brent, Marissa, Brittany, Brent, Kelsey, Jodie, Lois, Jerry, and 4 other friends. Whew 17 people! We are going to do the turkey and a couple apple pies. Everyone else is bringing a dish to pass. I think Andy is going to do his famous Guinness basted turkey. I am so looking forward to Thanksgiving. :) I am sure we are going to go climbing/biking that weekend too.
Much love and thanks for all the thoughts and prayers over the last couple weeks. It really has meant a lot to us. Heather and Andy
PS-I almost forgot! Jacqueline and I had an awesome hiking/camping trip 2 weekends ago. We hiked in the Smokey Mountains in North Carolina. My pack was 30 lbs! We hike about 6.5 miles the first day, camped over night, and hiked out about 5.75 miles the second day...although my GPS watch said we hiked over 9 miles that first day, hmmmm. We saw some awesome fauna and had a really enlightening weekend. Check out my pictures on Facebook. (hope the link comes through...)
Weather -- 2:16 pm (EST)
Chattanooga, TN -- Mostly sunny 71* - wind: calm - humidity 47%
Bloomington, IL -- Sunny 65* - wind: SW 10 mph - humidity 60%
Aurora, IL -- Partly cloudy 62* - wind SSW 10 mph - humidity 60%