We had to get an early start, as Ellie's race was set to start at 8:00 a.m. and we live a half hour away, plus had to pick up both of their numbers. Both kids handled the early wake-up call remarkably well! We all got decked out in our Christmas spirit finery and hit the road a little after 7:00 a.m., arriving in St. Augustine about 20 minutes before Ellie's race.
Ready for a day of festive fun!
When we arrived we picked up the race packets and got ready for Ellie's run. She and her daddy looked so cute in their running clothes with their numbers!
The first of many races they'll run together, I hope!
The concept for the kids' run was to actually chase a gingerbread man! They had a runner in costume who ran along with the kids. Each child runner was given a set of red circle stickers, and their goal was to chase down the gingerbread man and put stickers on him to represent "bites." Ellie never really got to the gingerbread man part, but it was a cute concept.
Kids "biting" the gingerbread man
Ellie and Eric got a bit of a late start (my fault for being in the wrong spot), but they were off at the back of the pack!
There they go!
The race stretched for two laps around the lake at the World Golf Hall of Fame. Ellie didn't make it too far before hitching a ride. It's possible she was a little spooked by all the craziness, even though they were at the back of the group.
How cute are these two?
By the time they made their second lap and were approaching the finish line, Eric was able to convince her to run a bit more to finish things off.
Here they come!
And then she was awarded her very first race medal, and given a gingerbread cookie to boot!
Way to go, Ellie!
She is PSYCHED.
Also, festively adorned pigtails might be my new favorite thing.
We posed for photos with mixed success.
Apparently she was unhappy with her finish time. She wanted a PR!
Posing with the Jacksonville Sharks mascot
We didn't have long to wait before Eric had to head off for his 5k. While he ran, Ellie, E.J. and I hung out by the finish line and watched the 10k and 5k runners. Ellie kept asking, "Is it time for Daddy yet?"
Watching the runners
She didn't have long to wait because Eric was FAST! So fast, in fact, that I wasn't ready with the camera when he came by! I managed to get it up to snap one quick picture.
Look at him, even giving a thumbs up like it's nothing.
As it turns out, Eric won his age group! Way to go, Eric!
Great job, runners!
Then we posed for another photo...
Post-race photo op
...and refueld a little bit.
Apple, sandwich, and smoothie. Runners can't live on gingerbread cookies alone.
Great job, W. family runners!
It should be noted that the next time Eric and Ellie run together will be in January: Ellie will be running in the Disney Kids' Run, and Eric will be running the Disney MARATHON! Exciting stuff!