The Master Cleanse

I was introduced to the Master Cleanse detox by one of my classmates in the Kinesiology Department at Wayne State.  I read the book by Stanley Burroughs who designed the cleanse in the 1940s, and decided it was something I would like to try.

That was over 12 years ago, and I have completed about four or five Master Cleanses since then.  I have gotten into running in the last few years, so I have not felt the need for fasting.  However, over the last several months my eating habits have gotten out of hand due to my hectic schedule.

Every time I do the Master Cleanse, there is a long-term improvement in my eating lifestyle.  One of the biggest changes I’ve experienced is ditching coffee for green tea. I am also reminded that every stomach pang is not for food, but my body’s need for water.

The benefit of fasting is immediate weight loss.  I always lose about a pound per day, or 10 pounds.  The lifestyle eating changes help me keep it off unlike fad dieting.

The only items to be consumed during the Master Cleanse are:  Organic Smooth Move tea to be sipped at bedtime, 1 quart of lukewarm water with 2 teaspoons of dissolved sea salt, and a lemonade mixture.

How to Make the Lemonade:

The book gives directions for preparation based on drinking the lemonade by the glass.  For people on the go I suggest mixing a gallon at a time as follows:

1 ¾ cups of fresh squeezed lemon juice.

1 ¾ cups of Maple Syrup.

A few dashes of cayenne pepper.

How to make the master cleanse lemonade

The Master Cleanse lemonade.  The mixture is good and satisfies hunger.  I used one gallon container for mixing and another to transport to work.


Note- organic lemons are preferred and limes may be substituted.  The book calls for Grade B Maple syrup but the grading of maple syrup has changed and Grade A is fine to use.  The key is that the color has to be dark amber.

Sea Salt Flush:

The sea salt flush is the absolute worse part of this cleanse due to the awful taste.  I count the days down based on the number of salt flushes I have remaining.  The idea is to flush out everything that was loosened by the Smooth Move tea the night before.  My experience is like someone running a garden hose through my body.

I suggest waking up and drinking this flush 3 hours before you need to be anywhere.  It takes about 30 minutes for the urge to come and when it does, watch out!  The urge may come 3-4 times before you can get back to “normal.”  Now is the time to start drinking the lemonade.

Pre-cleanse ease in:

Like most things outside the norm, it is easy to be successful if you are mentally prepared for the process.  Timing is everything.  Although the minimum time is 10 days to get the full detoxing effect, you have to plan ahead for any social events that involve food.  It just so happened that my yearly thyroid exam was due, and my medical check-up was normal.  Everyone is different, so consult with a doctor if you have medical conditions.

It is also important to have enough lemons for a few days and plenty of maple syrup. The night before the official Day 1 is when you start the Smooth Move tea.  The taste is not that great compared to green tea.

My 10 Day Master Cleanse:

Day 1- Friday and off work.  Easy day to begin due to a cold and rainy Kentucky Oaks day.

Day 2– Entertained by the Kentucky Derby coverage.

Day 3– I ran 5 miles.  I wanted to go to the movies, but I did not want to miss out on popcorn and candy.  I’m realizing how much food is a part of our lives for social and entertainment purposes.

Day 4– No lack of energy.  A busy Monday with work, Louisville Laser hair removal treatment in three areas, and the start of summer semester at U of L.

Day 5– 3 mile run.  Cooking lesson for my foster daughters.  The smell of food does not bother me.

Day 6– Work and School.  My tongue is completely white as a sign of the toxins coming out my body.

Day 7– Work and School.

Day 8- Feeling very nauseated and almost double the elimination.  T.G.I.F.  I just need to get through one more weekend and I’m good

Day 9– Hot Yoga Class and 502 Power Yoga.  Absolutely loved it and my body has not felt a challenging work out like this since my spinning days.  I consumed 20 oz. of lemonade and drank a bottle of water during my one hour hot yoga session.

Nike Studio Wrap Pack

The Nike Studio Wrap Pack for Hot Yoga class.


Day 10– Happy Mother’s Day Pampering.  Time to stock up on fruits and veggies.

Happy Mothers Day

Mother’s Day gift from my two Foster Daughters.


Breaking the Fast:

This is the most important part about the Master Cleanse.  The idea is to get the digestive system prepared for solid foods again, and it has to be done meticulously.  This is where the lifestyle changes come in because after 10 days of cleansing, I am super careful about what I put back into my body.

Day 11- Breaking the fast with orange juice.  This was the hardest day for me.  If I could only eat a banana I would be satisfied. That night I prepared a vegetable soup in the crock pot.  I used every vegetable that I was craving.

Master Cleanse Vegetable Soup

Vegetable Brooth Base with tomatoes, potatoes, mushrooms, squash, baby carrots, celery and onions.


Day 12– Only orange juice all day.  Dinner is mainly the vegetable soup broth with a few vegetables.

Day 13– My tongue is turning back pink and I can finally look forward to soup for lunch and dinner.  Orange juice is not appealing to me, so I switched to Bolthouse Farms Carrot and Naked Green Machine.

I will not consume any meat for about 2 weeks, and that will be mainly fish.


  • For the sea salt flush it is best to chug the quart of water without stopping.  I used my Reduce 32 oz. tumbler for the perfect measurement of a quart.  The salt water also cleaned out the tea stains from my daily green tea on the stainless steel.
  • Prepare the lemonade right before you go to bed.  The mixture is good for a day.  I found it easier to squeeze lemons at night rather than at 4:15a.m.
  • Pour a half gallon out for work and make sure you have enough left for when you get home.
  • If you take medications, seek Doctor’s approval first.  I took my thyroid pill about 30 minutes after the sea salt flush to make sure the hormones were absorbed into my bloodstream.
  • Lie down after the sea salt flush and let it work its magic.
  • For ladies, I suggest timing the cleanse in between menstrual cycles to avoid having too much going on at one time.
  • On the days I worked out I added more maple syrup to make sure I was getting enough calories.


Posted in food, health, Juicing, recipes | Tagged , , , , , | 3 Comments

KY Derby Festival Mini Marathon 2017 Recap

Half Marathon #13

April 29, 2017

The 2017 Derby Mini Marathon was my 4th time participating in a KDF race.  In 2013, it was my longest distance, and my inspiration to run a full marathon.  In 2014, I returned to walk a majority of the race with my foster daughter at the time.  In 2015, I ran a Boston qualifying time of 3:39:51 on the full marathon course in 18 miles of steady rain.

Kentucky derby festival medal 2017, 2015, 2014

The KDF mini marathon medal grew in size for 2017.  It is larger than my full marathon medal of 2015 and shows the Pegasus as the focus compared to the horseshoe in 2014.


This year, I signed up because one of the Race Ambassadors, Karen Brady encouraged me to use the throwback promo code to secure a very reasonable race fee.  It sounded good at the time, but this was the most underprepared race I have run due to a lack of training caused by a painful health condition.


I went for a 5 mile run about 3 weeks prior to the race.  I felt a cramp in my chest, and I waived it off as gas or indigestion because I had eaten spaghetti a few hours earlier.  I went to sleep with the same cramp in my chest.

The next day, the pain worsened to the point it felt like a knife was stabbing me every time I took a deep breath.  I went straight to the doctor.  After EKG testing and x-rays I was diagnosed with pleurisy.

Pleurisy is an inflammation in the lining around the lungs.   They prescribed me 800mg Ibuprofen to take 3 times a day for 2 weeks.  I only took the meds for about a week and sometimes only 1 or 2 pills a day.

After my symptoms subsided, my pace was slower because resuming routine workouts after any set back can be intimidating with fear of reoccurrence.

Race Expo: 

I linked up with Karen who was performing her Ambassador duties. She gifted me with a goodie bag of items any runner chick would like to add to the collection.

The Humana booth had a display of treadmills for people to run a mile and have Humana donate $20 to a local charity.  I was the first person to take the challenge which led to more people coming over to help the cause.

kelsie smoot louisville kentucky derby mini expo

1 Mile Humana run for charity at the KDF Expo


Weather Delays:

Due to not being on the popular social media platforms, I was probably the last to know via email about the first of three race delays.  I did not have a problem with an 8:00 a.m. start for the sake of more sleep.

When I entered the downtown area, the weather radar was not improving.  The sky remained dark and lightening was within a 15 mile radius of the course, although it was not raining.

weather for ky Derby mini marathon 2017

KY Derby Festival Mini Marathon Weather


I was almost at the start line when I realized I left my salted caramel GU in the car.  I was so bummed because I needed that boost if nothing else.

The next thing I know, there was another 30 minute delay.  I needed this break to power walk to my car for the GU.  I continued to check the radar and wondered if the race would be cancelled.  I thought about all of the training runners had endured and travel expenses for out of town guests.

Starting line ky derby festival mini marathon

A bare starting line at 8:09 a.m.


Once again, I walked back down Main Street to the starting line. I saw Karen and other familiar faces as we followed the directives of seeking shelter.  I bunkered down under a tree by one of the buildings.  Everyone displayed patience as we awaited the next update.

Race delay kdf mini marathon 2017

8:35 a.m. Seeking shelter from the rain and lightening


The bottom line is we all wanted to run our race.  Yes, our morning meals, and those 30 minutes before the race bananas had worn off.  Yes, some half marathoners would have been finished by time the race finally started a little after 9:00.

Kdf mini marathon gear check

8:48 a.m.  View of Gear Check area.  The race is almost 1.5 hours delayed and we’re all hungry.


Corral A:

The KDF festival assigned me to Corral A based off my prior results.  I knew good and well that I would not be running a fast pace.  I had worry in the back of my mind that the pleurisy would come back.  My goal was to run a smart pace as long as I finished.

My corral assignment was earned, so therefore it never crossed my mind to fall back and let other runners go ahead of me.  I was passed a lot the first half mile, but I stayed in my happy pace with a goal to complete under two hours based solely on pride.


It rained for the first 4 miles.  I felt comfortable about taking my hat off to avoid overheating.  As always, the crowd support was very encouraging.  Water and PowerAde stations were well organized.  I ran without carrying fluids or wearing a gps watch, so the fluid stations were critical.

God Bless the unofficial aid stops that provided orange slices.  In total, I know I ate an entire orange by the time I reached mile 6.

Feeling the energy as the route goes down Central Avenue into Churchill Downs is always motivating.  What I missed were the T.V. cameras with live updates.  The jumbo screen showed the Churchill Downs logo and not the “Go Baby, Go” greeting I saw at the last KDF race.

After the infield loop, we were back on Central and the full marathon split.  I recalled that long, lonely path, and was glad I was diverting left with the smart people this time.

At mile 9 one of my toes had the nerve to give me a little pain.  It also happens that I was only able to peak at 9 miles instead of 12 for proper half marathon training.

The larger the downtown skyline came into view, the happier I became.  The 2:00 pace group rolled up at mile 11 and I kicked it in high gear.  I was not about to let them pass me.


Time- 1:59:54

Age Group- 63/658

Female- 531/5,009

Overall- 1683/8736

Not bad for top 10% in age group and gender.  Factor in the males and my overall performance fell to top 20% which is decent for the long road it took to get me there.  I am thankful for all the support from my Smootents and colleagues.

Kelsie Smoot Stuart Academy

“If it doesn’t challenge you, it doesn’t change you” – Fred DeVito

Kelsie Lou

Posted in fitness, half marathon, health, Louisville, running | Tagged , , | 2 Comments

Finally Catching Up

Passing Kentucky Teacher Internship Program (KTIP)Check

Finals Week at U of L (3.825 Cumulative GPA)Check

Home life in balance with great Foster KidsCheck

Spring Racing SeasonCheck

Now, I can finally go back to the end of March and recap the highlights of Spring Break 2017 with my Mom and Dad in Winter Haven, FL.

lake winterset winter haven florida

Lake Winterset

I wasted no time getting down to Florida and enjoying a week in the sunshine state.  I was greeted with a pleasant surprise of an Easter basket.  The most functional item was an OxGord post workout car seat cover that would come in handy the next day.

Easter Basket Ideas

Brad, your sister is never too old for Easter Baskets (-:

The Prizm Run 10K

As usual, I searched for potential races for the week I would be in Florida.  I picked the Prizm Run in Lakeland for its location and purpose.  The race was sponsored by Fuel Church.  The goal was to increase awareness about child sex trafficking, and to raise money to help support agencies who offer support of victims.

The all-day event featured kids races, a 5K, a 10K, auctions, and plenty of BBQ food.  There was a mix up on the course route which looped the park about 4 times.  The last loop made the course just over 6.5 miles instead of 6.2.  I prefer to finish long than short to get full credit for the distance.

Prizm Run Lakeland, Florida

Lake Parker Park in Lakeland, FL

The field was small, so I was only competing with myself and the rising temperatures.  I was 1st place female overall and 4th place overall.  In addition to the course mix up, there were issues with the final results.  Luckily, the runners were able to give proper credit to the order of finishers.  The DJ summed it up well when he said, “We’re church folk.  We’re new at this” which was completely understandable.

Tiger Town

Kelsie Smoot Lakeland FL Tiger Town

Joker Marchant Stadium

After the Prizm Run, I went to Tiger Town to take a few photos of the Detroit Tigers spring training facility.  I quickly made friends with a groundskeeper, and he graciously offered me a tour of the entire area.  He has been working with the Tiger’s organization for over 25 years.  The way he got the job was an amazing testimony of how his integrity paid off in a career versus taking the easy way out.

There were a few players present although the Detroit opener was a few days away.  I was most impressed by the gym area with all of the updated equipment including an AlterG treadmill.

Detroit Tigers Training Toger Town

Tiger Town 9,400-square-foot weight room, the biggest in baseball.  Special batting cage built for Victor Martinez.

The clubhouse was decked out in Olde English D’s, large screens and butter soft, navy blue leather upholstery.  I did not notice the “Men’s” sign on the door until I wrote this blog.

Detroit Tigers Tiger Town Club House

The ultimate Man Cave

The hallways featured a map of where each player is from and a lot of memorabilia.  The Southfield, Michigan home I grew up in was once owned by Denny McLain so this was a full circle experience.

Detroit Tigers Denny McLain

Detroit Tigers Memorabilia


Tarpon Springs

Tarpon Springs is a small town north of Clearwater where Greek immigrants settled and mastered their skill of sponge diving.  There are several authentic Greek restaurants along the main strip of Dodecanese Avenue.

The traditional Greek Salads comes with a large portion of potato salad underneath the lettuce.  The combination is delicious.  Mom and I shared a Gyro, and I plan to sample more traditional dishes on my next visit.  The Greek desserts are a must have.

Dodecanse Street Tarpon Springs Hellas Restaurant

Hellas Restaurant and Bakery on Dodecanese Ave in Tarpon Springs

In addition to the food, I highly recommend the sponges and handmade soaps.  The sponges last a lifetime and there are different types for various purposes.  One product that will become a staple in my self-care items is a sugar scrub. I love the smell and it leaves my skin soft and glowing.  Check out to order online.

Anclote Key

A short ferry ride or boat rental will get you from the Tarpon Springs sponge docks to a small island called Anclote Key.  The first time I visited this place about 7 years ago, I felt like I was in a small piece of heaven.  With every wave washed up sand dollars.  This trip did not fare well for sea shell collection, however the scenery was still appreciated.

Anclote Key Ferry

Anclote Key Ferry

Anclote Key Beach

Anclote Key

Anclote Key Sand

Anclote Key Beach


Kelsie Smoot Alice Smoot Florida

I am a strong woman because a strong woman raised me.

Kelsie Smoot Anclote Key FL

Life is good because I decided to make it that way.


This concludes Spring Break ’17!

Kelsie Lou

Posted in Detroit, Florida, food, restaurants, running, Sports, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 3 Comments

Chasing a Pot of Gold

 Louisville St. Paddy’s Day Half Marathon Recap

12 Reasons why my 12th half marathon was all hustle and no luck for this leprechaun:

#1.  The weather went from 75° on Thursday to 30° with “feel like” 22° on Saturday.

#2.  I pulled into Beckley Creek Park at 8:08 a.m. and it took me 25 minutes to park.

St.Paddy's Day 5k half marathon parking louisville

Entrance to Beckley Creek Park from Shelbyville Road.


#3.  This was the first race where I was so late that I missed the start by almost 15 minutes.

Kelsie Smoot#StPddysrun Louisville KY

Photo Credit: Smug Mug for St. Paddy’s Half Marathon &5K Louisville March 13, 2017.


#4.  I forgot to tie my leggings in the waist after a quick restroom break before the race.

#5.  I was stuck behind all the 5K leprechauns until they hit their 1.5 mile turnaround.

#6.  Beckley Creek Park is beautiful, but the concrete paths are very hard on my knees.

Beckley Creek Park St.Paddy's Day half marathon

A view from one of the bridges.


#7.  My phone went dead at mile 5, so I was stuck holding a huge Galaxy Note for no purpose at all.  No pics.  No Drake station on Pandora.

#8.  The hills that I did not train for have my quads feeling like I ran a marathon instead of a half.

#9.  Seeing all the fast runners smile at me as they made their way towards the finish, and I wasn’t even half way.

#10.  Headwind the entire second half of the race.

#11.  Running up the hills I crossed over the first time.

#12.  Not placing in my age group.  I was 3 minutes slower than the 3rd place finisher.


Time-1:54:25, 8:43:57 pace

Age Group- 6th out of 42

Gender- 34 out of 241

Overall- 97 out of 423


*I spotted Jess from the first marathon training group I ran with in summer ‘13.  Like me, she is done with marathons and focusing on more family races with her boys who have taken a liking to the sport.

*Fun costumes!

Louisville St.Paddy's Day 5K

*In the sea of mostly white people showing their Irish pride was a black lady in pink. It had to be Minnie representing the Alpha Kappa Alphas. I yelled out the window, “Hey Soror” as I turned into the lawn to park. She was supporting her daughter April for the 5K. I was already late so why not take an ussie for the blog:

Sorors Minnie and Kelsie

Sorors for life!


*The race swag was nice and the announcer had a great sense of humor. The St. Paddy’s Day half shirt is good quality and something I will wear on St. Patrick’s Day this week.

St.Paddy's Day Half Marathon Swag Louisville

Long Sleeve Zip Tech Shirt, Pint Glass, and Finisher’s Medal.


*After the race, I took an Epson salt bath and jumped on 64 to get my pot of gold in Madison, WV as I visited my Grandma and Uncles.


Kelsie Lou

Posted in fitness, half marathon, health, Louisville, running | Tagged | 12 Comments

Christmas Break Run, Sun, and Fun!

Winter break was nothing short of spectacular as I was privileged to spend the entire time in Florida with my parents.  I felt a sigh of relief as Cycle 1 of my KY Teacher Internship which involves a lot of evaluations, meetings and paperwork was completed.  I also survived fall semester at U of L with a 4.0 GPA.  School was dismissed on a Friday, and I was on the highway at 5am on Saturday. My foster daughter was invited, but she chose to stay with her family in Louisville which wasn’t a bad idea for the holidays.


The Hot Chocolate Race Series held an inaugural 5k and 15k in Tampa on December 18th.  My Mom was cool enough to drive to Tampa and pick up my race packet which included a jacket and personalized bib.  I was not expecting my name to be printed on the bib because I registered a few days before.

I had to submit proof of race times in order to be placed in the fastest corral. It didn’t make a difference because the start was slow and crowded due to sharing our start with the 5k finisher’s corral and people more interested in Snap Chatting the race versus running it.  The 5k started about 30 minutes before the 15k.  The sky was overcast and the temps were around 73 degrees.  I knew once the sun peeked through, it would make for a very warm race, especially with an 8:30 start.

Temps maxed out at 84 degrees with full sunshine. The breeze from the Hillsborough Bay along Bayshore Blvd did not provide any relief to a course that was beautiful, but lacking sufficient fluid stops or shade.  The first Nuun stop was at mile 1.  That was good for the 5k runners, but meaningless for a 9 mile haul.  I took some fluids anyway just in case.  The next stop was not until mile 4, then another around mile 6 or 7.  There were a lot of upset runners.


Tampa Hot Chocolate 5k/10k Race Route Bayshore Boulevard

Along the sidewalk, I could see the locals running and stopping at fitness stations for pull ups, squats and other exercises. They made it look so easy because they are acclimated to the heat. Back in Louisville, I was adjusting to the cold. This race was so brutal that I thought about walking the last 3 miles.  Logic kicked in for me to determine a slower 9:00 minute pace would be easier than walking a 15:00 pace while dehydrated.  One lady gave in to walking while cursing the lack of course hydration.  She said she has never walked in a race. I pushed through with pride and removed my shades for better finisher photos which were included with the race fee.


Finally, I met up with my Mom in the finisher area and indulged in what this race is about…my favorite dessert in the world, CHOCOLATE!  As hot as it was, I sipped my hot chocolate and ate everything in my goodie mug. I read reviews about the mug and jackets being cheap quality.  I don’t know if the Hot Chocolate Race Series offered ceramic mugs in the past, but these were definitely plastic.  I doubt I will use it again.  I disagree with the jacket being cheap.  It is good quality fleece, but they run small.  I suggest ordering a size up.

Overall, Hot Chocolate Tampa was a check off my bucket list of novelty races. I do not think the organizers and out-of-state participants expected mid 80s in December.  The medals are the best part of this race.  It reminds me of the golden ticket bars in Willy Wonka.


Hot Chocolate Tampa 15k Finisher Medal 2016

Parking was a little confusing due to construction around downtown Tampa. We parked in a Publix lot and walked over a few blocks to the start.  It was convenient for after the race when I hopped in the backseat and swapped my race gear for a bikini and the lovely wrap from Hawaii my friend Karen gave me.

Mom and I drove to Pass-A-Grill Beach at the southern part of St. Pete’s Beach. We rented our little cabanas and munched on Cuban Sandwiches from Paradise Grill.  The water temperature was cold at 70, but it felt really good for my aching muscles.  Besides, there is not much to keep me from getting into the ocean.

Hot Chocolate 15k Tampa Results:

Time:  1:19:54  started with 8:25 pace and finished with 8:35 pace.

Overall:  103rd of 1,952

Female:  51st of 1,483

40-44:  13th of 266


The majority of the two weeks was spent doing a sunrise run every other day and soaking up as much sun as possible at the community pool of my parent’s gated residence. I teased a few family members up north with captioned “You Cold?” selfies.

I wasn’t feeling the Disney crowds during the busiest days of the year like I did in 2013. One of the locals suggested I visit Bok Tower Gardens in Lake Wales.  My Mom and I toured the beautiful garden which was envisioned by Edward W. Bok for all to enjoy.  He hired Frederick Law Olmstead Jr. as the landscape architect, and it was Olmstead who came up with the idea to construct Bok Tower on the highest point in Florida.


Peace Lantern

We toured the Pinewood Estate that was built for a snow bird from Pennsylvania by the name of Charles Buck. The 1930s mansion was decorated to reflect how it would be furnished for the holidays when Mr. Buck and his family would come visit. Bok Towers was a nice experience and the weather was perfect.


Kelsie Smoot

Moving on, I had some business to take care of in Lakeland and asked about anything worth seeing. I was led to Lake Hollingsworth and Florida Southern College.  FSC is home to the largest collection of Frank Lloyd Wright architecture in one place.

Voted as the “Nation’s Most Beautiful College Campus,” the centerpiece of the college is the Water Dome Fountain of Knowledge. I spent about an hour walking around the various concrete path walkways and admiring the sweet smell of roses at the Ruth’s Garden.


FSC Water Dome Fountain of Knowledge & Annie Pfeiffer Chapel

Christmas Day, and also my Mom’s birthday was spent beachin’. We rented another cabana at St. Pete’s Beach near the Sirata Beach Resort.  I picked this spot because the Mississippi State and Miami (OH) marching bands were having a battle of the sand outside the resort.


St.Pete Bowl Battle of the Sand MS State and Miami (OH)


St. Pete Beach Christmas Day

We stayed on the beach until sunset with crowds who brought mini Christmas trees onto the beach and built sand snow men.  Mom and I were thrilled to spend Christmas Day and her birthday on the beach.  She took one of her best photos to date with a little sassy coaching from yours truly.


Alice Jean Smoot Christmas Birthday


So where was Big Phil during all of this? I treated my Dad to midcourt 9th row seats at the Amway Center for the Magic vs. Grizzlies game.  Amway is one of the best sports venues I have visited.  I liked the order from your seat service, variety of concessions, customer service and overall cleanliness. Being off I-4 made for easy entry and exit.  I will always try to make Magic games when I am in town and a concert would be nice too.


Phillip L. Smoot Sr. and Kelsie Smoot


Phillip L. Smoot at the Magic’s Game

The following day, my Dad accompanied me to the North Palm Beach Mercedes-Benz Dealership where I purchased a 2014 ML350 while wearing my Mercedes-Benz half marathon shirt. It may seem corny, but when I ran that race in Birmingham, AL and earned the 3 point star medal, I thought how nice it would be to drive that emblem.  I would have never imagined owning a Benz less than two years later.


Mercedes-Benz 2014 ML350


My Dad says I don’t drive a car anymore, I have an automobile.

To round off the holidays, when the Louisville Cardinals football bowl game was announced to be the Citrus Bowl in Orlando, it was a no brainer on whether or not to attend. The night before was the Fan Appreciation party where I met the Athletic Director, Tom Jurich, and made a couple connections with U of L staff.

The game day activities were fun with a lot of freebies from Geico and Buffalo Wild Wings. I worked it like a race expo and got every free item and photo offered.



Camping World Stadium.  Citrus Bowl 2016 Louisville vs. LSU

The weather was gorgeous as I watched the game in defeat.  Not a single touchdown, but I am glad they got something on the board.  I spoke to James Quick’s Dad, my former co-worker and neighbor on my way out the stadium.  He mentioned having a meeting with agents soon.  Best of luck on NFL dreams to the Quick family!


I went to the Dillard’s sale on New Year’s Day for Nike running shorts and watched all the NFL Sunday football games simultaneously at Millers Ale House. Who knew there was a freaking Giordano’s in Orlando?  I went for dinner and was eating the left overs all the way back to Louisville.


Kelsie Lou

Posted in automotive, Basketball, family, Florida, football, health, Louisville, running, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

She’s A Goal Digger

This post has been on my mind through miles of running and was written in my head long before I had the chance to sit down and purge my thoughts.  A lot has happened since the start of the school year, so as I continue goal digging I need to archive everything.

I’ve had the opportunity to go back to school for a second masters degree thanks to a C.A.R.D.S. (Competency, Awareness, and Responsiveness to Diverse Students) partnership between JCPS and the University of Louisville to meet the needs of our diverse school district.  I will earn Rank I status along with a MEd in teacher leadership and a diversity literacy certificate.  Fall semester wraps up next week with a 10 page paper and video taped lesson plan project.  JCPS awards me a tuition reimbursement each semester since I teach in a priority school.

Speaking of class, I earned my CCDW permit and purchased a 9mm.  I don’t want to use it, but I will “double tap” someone like my instructor taught me for self defense.


I turned the big 40 in September and celebrated by attending the Bad Boy Reunion concert in Cincinnati.


Turning 40 meant moving up to the 40-44 age bracket, and I was itching for a race.  On October 15th I placed 1st place overall female in the Hurstbourne Hustle 5K.  It was a small crowd of maybe 100 runners.  My time was 23:00.  The sponsors gave me a gift certificate for a Road ID.


After the boost of age confidence, I needed to be a kid again and found an old cheerleader uniform in one of the back closets to wear for my school’s Halloween dance.


Mr. McGinnis and Smoot


During the weekend of daylight savings I went to WV to visit my Grandma.  We had a nice time shopping and she ate at IHOP for the first time.  Breakfast for dinner was my pre race meal for the Marshall University Half Marathon.  Prior to my trip, I checked for races and lucked up on the MUM.


My fitness goal is to be half marathon ready at all times.  On the weekends, I try to get in longer 7-8 mile runs.  This go around, all I had time for was a 9 mile training run about 4 days before the race.    I registered in person as soon as I got off I-64 in Huntington.  The race swag consisted of a Marshall University bag and tech shirt.  Early registrations came with a jacket, but I missed them.

Race morning conditions were foggy and chilly around 37 degrees.  I went out and tore it up with a half marathon personal best.


Finish Time:  1:42:20

Age group:  2/94

Gender:  11/574

Overall:  75/1,005



What I liked about this race was the course, being thrown a football to run the last 50 yards to the end zone, the cookout post race food, Blenko Glass Company awards (they have pieces in the White House), easy parking, and free race photos.  My strong finish made me almost think about jumping back into marathon training again, but that thought left my mind as soon as it entered.  The Flying Pig was my last 26.2.  I need my joints intact.

After the presidential election, it was refreshing to see a diverse turnout for an Angela Davis lecture at U of L.  She was correct when she said, “Freedom is constant struggle.”

Lastly, I got the chance to check out my parent’s new home in Florida.  We went to Ruth’s Chris in Tampa for Thanksgiving dinner and had a great time.  My Foster Daughter and I stayed at Lake Buena Vista Resort for a two-day Universal Studios and Island of Adventure experience.



I normally do not ride rollercoasters, but I was talked into riding the Hulk ride and the Dr. Doom Drop.  I voluntarily rode one of the Harry Potter rollercoasters.  The weather was perfect for the parks and the crowds were really low.  I was happy to experience Characters in Flight at what used to be called downtown Disney and is now Disney Springs.  I was unable to ride the last 3 times due to high winds or lightening.

I can’t believe we are one month away from 2017.  Please excuse me while I get back to my goal digging.



Posted in Education, family, fitness, Florida, half marathon, running, Travel, West Virginia | 2 Comments

A True Love Story

I’m sending a huge shout out to Mr. and Mrs. Phillip L. Smoot to congratulate them on 50 years of marriage!

Phillip & Alice Smoot

My Mom, Alice Smoot, who is from Logan, WV met my father when she was visiting her big sister in Madison, WV.  They were teenagers when my Dad staked his claim.  Their courtship continued beyond high school and into adult years.  My Dad was drafted into the Army, and my Mom pursued her teaching certification in all subjects at West Virginia State.

As a child, I remember my Mom showing me some of the love letters my Dad wrote her from Vietnam.  She still holds onto them with their yellowed papers and ink marks spread like an old tattoo.  My Dad would send my Mom money to help with college expenses like joining Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority, Inc.

Phillip Lewis Smoot Vietnam

Phil and Alice were reunited after the war and moved to Bridgeport, CT.   Neither of them liked the area, so they made their way to Michigan where my Nanny lived.  My Dad worked at Ford Motor Company and my Mom landed a teaching job at Highland Park High School.

Alice Smoot Highland Park HS Swim

This photo was taken outside their first home on Harlow Street on the West Side:

Phillip and Alice Smoot Detroit Michigan

My parents had 3 boys, Phillip Jr., Corey and Jason.  I was a year old when my parents moved to Southfield in order to provide my siblings with a better education.  My youngest brother, Brad was born and made our family complete.

I cannot stress enough how much fun I had growing up and having both of my parents in the home to provide stability, love, positive examples, support and encouragement.  They both worked more than one job.  My Mom never had a summer off.  She was always doing extra service at youth sports camps and lifeguard duties.  My Dad would come home with salt on his skin from hot conditions in the plant.  My Dad side hustled everything from silk screen shirts to jewelry at the weekend flea market.

Together, my parents owned a commercial cleaning business called P&A Cleaning.  Those 10 years of extra income put Corey, Brad and myself through college.  The grandkids got love too!  My parents looked after them as if they  were their own.  All of the Grandkids have had the opportunity to travel and do Disney.  My Dad never hesitated to roll out when the plants shutdown.

I didn’t expect to write this much, but the lovely part of blogging is I never force it.  I want to make sure I recognize the two people who have made me into the woman I am today.  I am blessed to have taken after the best of both worlds.

My Mom and Dad recently relocated to Florida to spend the rest of their lives together.  I had a very tough time after they left Kentucky on top of still grieving Kevin’s passing.  I was sobbing on the phone to my Grandma and she told me it was normal to be upset.  She described them best when she said, “Your parents are your jewels.”

I am grateful for the time they spent with me in Louisville.  The Ohio Valley air quality made everyday life for my Dad difficult.  He is doing much better in the Sunshine State.  Phil and Alice are exploring all the restaurants and enjoying life.

Phillip Smoot Sr Florida

Phillip L Smoot Sr Alice J Smoot






Posted in Detroit, family | Tagged , , | 21 Comments

Family First

The Smoots

Photographer: Rachel Norris, Panache Louisville Photography

Location:  Papa John’s Park

Date: July 2, 2016

Smoot FamilyPhillip and Alice SmootAlice and Kelsie SmootPhillip Lewis Smoot Sr.

Phillip L. Smoot Sr. Jr, III, IVPhil JrTrey and Prince

Kelsie Smoot

The SmootsPhil Jr and KelsieBig Phil and Jr

Smoot Family Photo





Posted in family, Louisville, Photography | Tagged , , , , , | 9 Comments

Detroit Summer 16

Detroit Summer 16

I refuse to be in the doldrums over Kevin’s passing. There is no way he would want me to be all depressed anyway.  My longtime friend from Southfield High School and beyond sent me an invite to her 40th birthday celebration a couple of hours before Kevin passed away.  She wasn’t expecting me to attend because of everything going on, but she wanted to keep me informed.

The weekend of Tajuana’s birthday, I made my way to Detroit with an unannounced stop at my Brother Phil’s house. We went to Coney Island where I introduced Crissa to Coney’s, chili cheese fries and Greek salads.

On Saturday, my friend Maxie took us downtown to Pizza Papalis. Their deep dish is good, but lacked the thickness of Chicago’s Giordano’s.  We rode the People Mover and got off at Woodward so I could check out the new Nike Community Store.  I loved the store layout and friendly service.

Detroit greektown_1468639213542

Kelsie and Crissa outside Pizza Papalis in Greektown, Detroit.


We walked to Campus Martius, and it was refreshing to see young adults playing basketball on the four Nike courts and engaged in sand volleyball.

I haven’t been on the Detroit Riverwalk since the 2013 Auto Show Shuffle. It’s impressive to see all the progress being made downtown.  I didn’t see the new Hockey Town construction, but I did see the cranes from the People Mover.

It was time to switch gears and roll up on Tajuana at her party. It felt so good to see my friend and be amongst all her family and friends.  True friends are hard to find.


Friends 25 years Strong!


On Sunday, Crissa and I drove to the Mt. Olivet Cemetery for a Sunrise Race I found on Running in the USA. They had a 1.5 mile walk, a 5K and a 10K.  Crissa forgot her running shoes (again) and changed from the 5K to the walk.  I chose the 10K because it is my weakest distance.

It was ironic for the only race in the area that weekend to be at a cemetery. I didn’t let it get to me as I recalled running through Cave Hill and Frankfort Cemetery’s.  I ran with a goal to place in my age group.  The weather was in the low 70s, clear skies and low humidity.  The Mt. Olivet Cemetery Sunrise Run benefited the Make-A-Wish Foundation

At mile 2 I linked up with a running partner. We held a good pace and he really pushed me through.  He tried to get me to leave him when he took longer stops at the water stations.  I refused to bail on him because we ran in perfect cadence.  I warned him that I do kick at every finish.  It was close to the finish when I sprinted to the line and finished around 30 seconds ahead of him.


I found this beautiful photo of Noah and I online.  Photo Credit:  Brandy Baker, The Detroit News.

I introduced myself to my running buddy and his name was Noah. His wife’s name is Kelsey.  I thanked him for running beside me.


After the race an outreach group called “We Care About 7 Mile” served a nice breakfast.

Results of the 9th Annual Sunrise Run:

1st in my age group with a time of 48:41/ 7:51 pace.

4th place Women’s division.

12th place overall.

I’m glad I got to be around family and friends for the weekend. I was able to link up with my other Brother Jason who hates taking photos, so next time I will have to sneak one.  At least I have my most competitive Words With Friends player back.  I saw my Aunt Mary and visited Corey’s children who were getting ready to take family photos.


Corey Jr, Kelsie, Trinity, and Chloe.


Last stop before hoping on 75 South was a Bread Basket corned beef with some onion rings.


Bread Basket Special


Eat. Run.  Repeat.


Posted in Detroit, family, fitness, health, running, Travel | Tagged , , , , | 8 Comments

Remembering Kevin L. Carter

Kevin Lamor Carter

Kevin l carter obituary kentucky

aka “Chairs” “Pellet” “Frank” depending on how you knew him or where you met him.

6-27-77 Bridgeport, Connecticut


6-28-16 Louisville, Kentucky

 Kevin and I met on Friday, December 4, 1998.  I remember the date so clearly, because I went to Atlanta with my friend Tajuana for Thanksgiving.  We partied so hard that I had to stay in my apartment all week to recuperate. I decided to get out that Friday and hang with my girl Tonya. She told me her friend was coming over and he was bringing a friend. They pulled up in a white Dodge Caravan. I sat behind the passenger and Tonya sat behind the driver, a dude named Jermaine.

Kevin, who introduced himself as “Phrank” asked my name and where I was from. I told him I was a student at Indiana Tech and I was from Detroit. I picked up on his East coast accent right away and was turned on by his swag. I didn’t vibe with the Indiana boys that much being a city girl. Kevin asked me how long I would be in Fort Wayne, and I replied with a Foxy Brown rap lyric from Jay Z’s Paper Chase “Til May down this ____.” In reality I was supposed to finish my Engineering degree in May ’99, but I put off my senior project second semester.

We made our way to the store and when we got back to Tonya’s house, Kevin told us to go inside and he would be there in a minute. It was taking a while, so Tonya and I stood on the porch to see what the problem was. That’s when I saw Jermaine bringing a wheelchair around to the passenger side. I got all dramatic and was like, “Girl what happened to him? Why is he in a wheelchair? Is he in a gang?” Tonya was like, “I don’t know, I don’t know,” in her Southern accent.

Jermaine pulled Kevin up the steps and we all sat around and talked and had drinks. Some other people stopped by, and we partied like normal college kids. Kevin did what most Indiana corn balls were lacking. He asked me on a date. We made plans for dinner and a movie. It turned out the van was his. I was nervous about who was going to drive and how independent he was. None of that was an issue. Kevin refused to use hand controls and drove with a t-ball bat instead. To this day, he is one of the safest drivers I know. We ate at Applebee’s and I don’t recall the movie we saw.

From that point, it was on and poppin’. I called my Mom and told her I was not coming home for Christmas Break. Kevin took me to his hometown of Bridgeport, CT where I met his father’s side of the family. Of course, we went to New York and I was blown away by the City.

Kevin carter bridgeport ct

Harlem and Manhattan

Kevin lived with his mother, Pearlie, her husband, his younger siblings, and nieces and nephews. His older sister Janice was murdered in 1995 in Fort Wayne, so his mom was raising her children. Kevin went to Janice’s funeral in ’95 and it was 2-3 weeks later that he suffered a spinal cord injury which gave him a T-6 paralysis. He was only 16 and a 6 foot 5 basketball star at his high school. Kevin would often point out UConn players on TV who he played against.

Complications from being bedridden and depressed made him develop blood clots. His legs were amputated above the knee. He told me it was easier for him to lose the dead weight. The next issue became the muscle spasms. His legs would spasm so badly that they would cross over. I remember pushing down on his legs to try and keep them flat. On those tender spots is where he developed skin ulcers.

Kevin and I moved into together the summer of 1999. Our apartment was laid because he and I both have good taste in fashion and style period. Kevin had numerous surgeries to skin graft bed sores and treat infections. Kevin was still in good spirits. He loved video games, music, good food, movies and going to Detroit for corned beef and Bridgeport for pizza.

Kelsie smoot 1999

Kelsie Summer ’99 East Central Towers, Fort Wayne, IN

I finally graduated in May 2000. Kevin and I lived in Fort Wayne until September 2001. We both felt like we had outgrown the city and it was time to move on. I went back home trying to figure my life out, and Kevin moved back to Bridgeport, CT. Distance could not keep us apart and before I knew it, I called myself moving to Bridgeport. It was right after 9/11 and I remember driving through NYC and seeing missing people flyers all over the place. The smell of flesh was in the air from the 9/11 attacks.

Kelsie Smoot fort wayne indiana

Photo taken by Kevin as he was recovering from a surgery in a rehab center in Fort Wayne, IN.

Winter came and no engineering companies were responding to my resume. I drove back to Detroit. At the same time, Kevin’s mom Pearlie and her husband left Fort Wayne, moved to Indianapolis, and finally settled in Louisville. Kevin and I would meet up in Louisville quite often. I experienced my first Kentucky Derby cruising in 2002. I went back to Detroit telling everyone how live Louisville was. It was pretty wild back then before police started shutting down Broadway.

Kevin l carter indiana 2004

Holiday World Wave Pool in Santa Claus, Indiana, Kirk (Willie), Janai, Kelsie, Kevin. 

Sadly, Kevin’s mom passed away on Memorial Day 2002 and he was crushed. He flew into Detroit and we drove down to Louisville together. Kevin was so broken and until his dying day he took her birthday, Memorial Day and Mother’s Day very hard. I was extra sensitive to him around those days. This past Memorial Day is when we went for rides on the Can Ams. It lifted his spirit.

Kevin carter kelsie carter kentucky


We both took time to learn ourselves a few years after Pearlie’s sudden passing. Those 20’s can be something else! Kevin and I went through a lot, but always found a way back to each other. His health was pretty stable besides a dehydration or minor infection bout which would put him on IVs for a few days.

After I completed my Master’s Degree in Education, I relocated to Louisville with Kevin. I picked out a gorgeous halo set diamond from Shane Co. Our plan was to get married on 7-7-7. The day came and went and we looked at each other like “you didn’t plan anything and I didn’t either.” We talked about getting hitched in Hawaii and I was like why spend all that money. Both of our families and friends are all over the U.S. and buying a home was more important.

My name became Kelsie Carter on November 24, 2007 in a Justice of Peace ceremony at our apartment’s clubhouse at Blankenbaker Crossing. I wore a non-traditional dress with a white fox fur. Less than 6 months later we purchased a home in PRP and were living the dream.

Kevin and kelsie carter louisville 2008

Mr. and Mrs. Kevin Carter in 2008

Next up was babies. Kevin got some news that was hard to swallow, but we still decided to move forward with in vitro fertilization. We did two rounds which both failed. It was a major let down for both of us. Things began falling apart with our marriage. We separated in 2009 and divorced in 2010.

Kevin carter louisville ky ichiban

Kevin outside of his other favorite restaurant Ichiban.

I covered up his Kevin tattoo on my wrist with some flowers and kept the K. As I type this, I glanced to see the “evin” which I’m now glad was not completely covered. Everyone thought I was going to move back to Detroit and he would go back to Connecticut. They had us messed up. We love the warmer weather and quality of life in Kentucky. We both bloomed where we were planted and he ventured towards the Lexington and Richmond area.

Kevin carter kelsie tattoo

Last summer, Kevin told me to write my name on a sheet of paper.  A of couple days later my signature was tatted under a Queen Chess Piece. 

I deactivated my Facebook and got into running seriously. I also became a therapeutic foster parent. I was tracking workouts on Daily mile, and Kevin would try to comment on my posts. I was deleting them and blocking him as I was training for the Marine Corps Marathon in 2013. I was still dealing with some anger of our divorce.

I had to make sure my mind was right before I hooked back up with Kevin. My Mom and I went to a Colts vs. Bengals game on October 19, 2014. I made a blog post and low and behold Kevin made a comment. Being the site administrator I was able to see his URL and email info. I decided it would be best to contact him privately before we interacted publicly.

I poured my heart out to Kevin and told him all was forgiven. I gave a stern warning to not post anything crazy on my blog. Kevin emailed back thanking me for making him the man he was and apologizing for his wrongs. The topper was the fact that Kevin Carter was at Lucas Oil Stadium for the same game and saw me and my Mom! He was too nervous to approach me.

We left the correspondence at that and he gave me a hard time about reppin’ the Bengals because I was a Colts fan with him. I do confess I always wished they loss after we broke up.

I reached out to Kevin when my nephew, Lil’ Jay was murdered in Killeen, TX. Kevin knows my entire family and how close we are. He was hurt at the news of this tragedy. Up until this point Kevin and I only communicated via email and maybe a text. The day of Lil’ Jay’s funeral Kevin and I talked for 5 hours straight getting caught up. He took me to our favorite restaurant, Ruth’s Chris after I got back to Louisville. He came fresh to def with his Ralph Lauren and Polo Black cologne to match. That boy hadn’t missed a beat.

For the next year and a half, we grew to become Best Friends. We did a lot of traveling. He was the behind the scenes guy. He knows how protective I am over content. This is my legacy, and I don’t let just anybody get a photo, let alone a name mentioned up in here.

Kevin was flattered to see his photos on my blog. Even when he would get on my nerves, I never had the urge to delete any of his content. Kevin is my family whenever anybody gets done with it.

Kevin Carter gatlingburg tn

Anyone who knew Kevin recognized that he made a huge to-do about his birthday every year. He celebrated the entire month of June. I knew not to ask him for anything during that time. For 2016, Kevin and his friend Steve were planning on hauling their bikes up to Bridgeport for a week or two. Kevin was so excited about going home to see his family.

Kevin Carter True Friends

Tez, Steve, and Chairs.  The realest of the real.

At the same time I was noticing that Kevin was looking very thin. He was in the hospital a couple months ago for what he told me was dehydration. He did mention having kidney disease, and I told him he could have one of mine if it came down to it.


On June 3rd, LeeAnna and I met him in Lexington for lunch at BD’s Mongolian Grill. Kevin had a meaningful conversation with the both of us. We sat and talked for three hours and ended up tipping twice due to shift change. I noticed that Kevin only ate a few bites of food. Being the gentleman he is, he followed me to the gas station and filled up my car before LeeAnna and I drove back to the Ville.

Kevin carter richmond ky

Kevin settled for the Charger R/T after wanting a Camaro which I told him was not practical for the wheelchair storage.

Something that stood out to me in the last few weeks is how complimentary Kevin had been towards me. He told me on several occasions how proud he was of me as a foster parent and new homeowner. He showed major love as a friend.

Kevin lamor carter louisville ky

Kevin Carter living life to the fullest.

Kevin called me on Thursday, June 9th with a weak voice saying he was going to the hospital in an ambulance. I asked was there anything he needed me to do. He had given me a key to his place back in January, so it was nothing for me to make sure his things were in order. I told Kevin to call and let me know what the doctors said. He was just at his family physician the day before complaining of loss of appetite and severe back pain.

I woke up the morning of the Muhammad Ali funeral service and I did not have any calls or texts from Kevin. At 6:20 a.m. I asked how he was feeling. He replied back “better” that evening when I had made it up to Milwaukee. I didn’t hear from Kevin the entire weekend which wasn’t that odd due to him not feeling well.

That Sunday is when the ICU nurse dropped a bomb on me that Kevin was very sick. I was at his side the next morning. The doctor explained he had severe blood infection that the strongest antibiotic was not helping. There was issues with his intestines, and his red blood cell count was dangerously low. The doctor asked was he having difficulty breathing and he said yes. She made the decision to place him on a ventilator. I was worried and nauseated by the prognosis. I’ve been with him through several surgeries and even wearing a protective suit to see him, but a ventilator? Nah, this was all new. I wanted to pass out in that ICU room but I couldn’t let him see me break. I did start to tear up a little and he told me “don’t start that @$#%.” Like a little kid, I got my act together real quick.

Kevin told me he loved me four times and kissed me on the lips. I was kicked out the room as they went to sedate him and hook up to the vent. All this happened Monday, June 13. Kevin endured two rounds of dialysis that week, and it helped his kidney function a little better. The surgeon saw the problem with his intestines through a dye test, but Kevin would not have survived the procedure.

They took Kevin off the propofol and he was more alert, although he could not talk being hooked up to the vent. He gave me a high five when I told him about the Gold Jacket 5k and how I got won 1st place overall female for him. He kept touching the ring medal. I wanted to leave it with him, but I was afraid it would get misplaced.

I didn’t visit him directly on his birthday, Monday June 27th. He had a room full of people and I knew he needed some rest. Instead, I sent some texts to his friend Tez who let Kevin read them.

I went to see Kevin on Tuesday afternoon and I saw a drastic change from two days prior. I could look into his eyes and see that he was tired. Kevin had fought all he could. He was in pain. I later learned from a nurse associate from my old job, that Kevin refused treatment that morning. He refused to have a tracheostomy. Kevin made the decision to be off of everything. It was all in his favor. He made the choices himself.

I didn’t know those were Kevin’s decisions when word got to me that they were pulling the plug about an hour after I had left the hospital. I was hysterical thinking someone else was making those decisions, but that wasn’t the case. I told Kevin’s friend that he wasn’t going to make it through the night.

Around 9:30 p.m. I was feeling antsy. My foster daughters joined me for a late night walk. I was breaking down knowing that the end was near. I started to go back up there, however, I didn’t not want to remember Kevin dying. I wanted to remember our positive interactions with one another. His friend who was delivering the text messages for me called and said he had just left the room. I was talking to Tez when he got the text that said “He’s Gone.”

I sat on my deck and looked up and the starry heavens and told my baby goodbye. Kevin suffered through so much trauma, yet and still he hardly ever complained and lived his life to the fullest. Kevin Lamor Carter taught me how to love myself, how to be kind to others and the true meaning of patience. There will always be a place in my heart for my ultimate soul mate. His memory and legacy live on through my actions in this world and the actions of those who he touched. Whether you were his nurse, waitress, friend or family, he treated everyone the same.

Kevin chairs carter

Collage by Steve

Kevin had a low tolerance for slackers. He would get on you for not living to your potential and gaining the most out of life. His smile was infectious. Kevin loved to eat good so there was no going hungry around him. When we reconnected last year one of the first things he told me was he needed to fatten me up. With running I am not able to hold weight like those thick days that he liked. Kevin fattened me up with love, friendship, loyalty and life.


Vegas Helicopter Ride with landing in the Grand Canyon Birthday gift to Kevin.

I love you ALWAYS Kevin Carter! You mentioned in those emails we exchanged about “love is love from this lifetime to the next.” I cherish those words because I know we shall meet again. You sent me a sign the other night that you are OK and you were checking on me. Although you are gone in the physical, your spirit lives forever in our hearts!

Kevin and Kelsie Carter

Kevin and Kelsie Kentucky Oaks 2015

(I thought this was going to be a teary eyed blog post and surprising I was able to tackle it with dry eyes. Let me be a witness for any and everyone who has lost a loved one that you must stay strong and lean on God, friends and family for support. Birth and death are cycles of life. The hardest part for me is knowing what Kevin is doing in heaven. I’m not in a rush to find out as I know God is still working on me. My engineering mind is curious to know all the answers. I can’t help it. J)

Kevin Carter Richmond Kentucky

Rest in Heaven My Love,

Kelsie Louise Smoot

Posted in family, Indiana, Lexington, Louisville, Travel | Tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 13 Comments