• By Vanessa Seitz Midway Correspondent

Midway News and Views

Sometimes as mothers, or perhaps fathers too, we reinvent ourselves; evolve, adapt and change. We do this either to react to life’s ever-changing tide or preferably to set the sails, and steer a course, in advance of rough seas or fair sailing ahead. I prefer the latter, but as of late there has been much reaction (mainly to do with the home repairs I discussed a few weeks ago, but also largely due to the unceasing rainfall and resultant never-ending mowing!).

On the home front, the furniture has been moved back in, the painting is almost done, the floors are finished and shiny, and the gleaming new upstairs toilet, with the requested capacity of being able to flush a basketball before it even tries to get blocked again, is installed.

It is a peaceful feeling, as we really are such creatures of habit, to look around the home you have made, with all its memories. With lights that work, with HVAC, with furniture and photographs and a well-stocked fridge. But earlier this week, I looked around the same house and saw instead a shell, an empty building – for that is what it truly is, without love and family and friends within. It was an a-ha moment, a sad-but-true moment. The kids were in school, friends were travelling and busy, my parents are British and currently on yet another “enjoying retirement” cruise somewhere lovely. And I was alone. But as I decorated, hanging the canvases and photos back on the walls, cherishing the memories, the house became a home again.

It is also a lesson in being happy being by yourself, without leaning on someone else, that I think helps you grow and get stronger, think deeper and connect with yourself; a necessary skill. But it’s all part of life’s journey and learning your life balance.

Today, with the kids, I talked together about taking time to make memories and be a family, to not rush so much, to put the iPods, iPids, iPads, iPeds down and stop being snippy and snarky and hormonal (I have two teenagers in the house (eye-roll) and instead plan a few evenings together or talk about things that are important; to not let time slip away.

This had actually been the suggestion of my oldest a few weeks ago. The sophomore high school workload plus learning “adult-ing” and dealing with “life” has made her look at life differently; thankfully. She has just two-and-a-half more years (sob!) before college. Boom!

Gone!

So, maybe, just maybe, use the next few months to celebrate your family and friends. Fall is great for having friends over for dinner, watching football, enjoying the cooler air. Thanksgiving is just around the corner, and just beyond that, Christmas.

There are a lot of things coming up in Midway to enjoy with your family in the next few months ahead.

Trick or Treat will be Wednesday, Oct. 31, from 6 to 8 p.m. I think we have done Trick or Treat in Midway for the past five years now – it really is quite unlike any other town. The homes are decorated so well – lights and scary sound effects, dry ice, skeleton graveyards, inflatable headless horsemen, kettle corn, great candy (mum gets all the banana Laffy Taffy and Kit Kats!), and even warm apple cider. And

I love how safe it feels and meeting up with so many friendly faces. We will not be bringing the pony to trick or treating this year (some may remember Sugar-the-very-cute-grey-pony coming up to their front doors a few years ago) but we are likely to bring Henry (long-haired scruffy Jack Russell) dressed as a pirate, for comic relief!

Then, the Christmas Holiday Kick Off is Nov. 3 from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Midway stores will be open, in addition to many sidewalk craft vendors. Restaurants will have appetizers, meals, and beverage features all day and into the evening. For kids, there will be activities and free mini train rides from noon to 4 p.m. City Hall and other downtown locations will collect new unwrapped toys for the Woodford County Toys for Tots program.

On Nov. 17, Midway will host a Charity Chili Cook Off from noon to 3 p.m. The dining fee is only $5 to sample 20-plus chili recipes and proceeds will support the Midway Ministerial Area Association. Contestants will be located outside on the main sidewalk. Samplers will vote for their favorites and contestants will receive cash and trophy or medal prizes. As before, the stores, sidewalk vendors and restaurants will be open. And new unwrapped toys will be collected for the Woodford County Toys for Tots program.

Finally, on Nov. 24, Midway welcomes Santa on the R.J. Corman train at 11 a.m. Children can visit with Santa till 3 p.m. Stores and sidewalk craft vendors will be open 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. and restaurants will be open all day and evening. The free mini-train rides will run again, along with kids’ activities and face painting. And bring a new unwrapped toy to donate to the Woodford County Toys for Tots program.

But this week’s Midway events are all about running. First is the Bourbon Chase, which starts Friday at the Jim Beam Distillery and ends in downtown Lexington at Triangle Park the next day. The Bourbon Chase is 200-miles through some of Kentucky’s best distilleries, along country roads and through our small towns. There are approximately 400 teams of 12 runners, although some have elite teams of six runners who split the 200 miles into three runs each of varying mileage. Each team runner is followed by a van with other runners and supplies. So, on Saturday, as the runners reach Midway and enjoy our beautiful town, give them a little room on the roads and welcome them. Many are from out of state, and the race gives us a chance to share our town and all it offers, so that maybe they’ll come back at a more leisurely pace and enjoy a glass of wine at a Midway restaurant or buy gifts at one of the historic downtown stores.

I have run the Bourbon Chase twice. It’s fun. It’s all about teamwork, finding motivation when you are often running alone, digging deep and rising to the challenge. And believe it or not, there are some runners that will run around 20 miles in the Bourbon Chase on Friday and Saturday, then wake up on Sunday morning and run the Iron Horse Half Marathon!

Yes, this Sunday is the Iron Horse Half Marathon and 12K race. Expect runners to be parking on side streets and anxiously pacing the streets of Midway early that morning. Most runners are courteous – and appreciative of the welcome Midway gives them each year. Many are local runners, and this is really one of the nicest half marathons in the area, along with the RunTheBluegrass half marathon from Keeneland every March.

Am I running? Yes! I even coerced a friend, Megan, into running with me! So, on Sunday, as you wrap your hands around your steaming mug of morning coffee, maybe slip your feet into a pair of warm boots and throw a coat on (yes, we are supposed to finally see fall weather this weekend!) and walk down to the Midway soccer fields and cheer on a few runners. Megan and I may or may not be dressed as superheroes, but we will be running and catching up on life, discussing First World problems and family as we run, as always. Hopefully, running with our sails (or capes) set to steer a course to a good run, with enough wind to tackle the hills and enough heart to finish strong.

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