Friday, December 30, 2011

Go Ahead......LAUGH

For your viewing fun, pleasure and because you might need a really good laugh, I made this vlog post for you.

First, here are some pictures I took during my 2 hours in the dental chair.  I also got a lot of reading done and listened to my ipod the whole time.  So I didn't mind.  Once you take away the long pointy needles pushing into my gummy flesh and the sounds & smell of drilling away at my teeth it was really a very relaxing visit.  Not to mention my dentist does a great job at taking his time (which I take as taking time to do the job right), making sure I'm comfortable and is just great all around.

This was taken when I only had 1 area numb.  I ended up with 3 total.  So this is not as bad as it is in my video. 
 I actually didn't mean to take this picture.  I was trying to use my camera to look into my mouth.  I actually *hate* the look of my mouth when it's open like this.  Too much metal, reflective of my extensive fillings through out the years.  It actually looks slightly better than in the past because of my new crown on the lower left side that I had done in natural color.  Since I'm sharing about this ridiculous, albeit normal, and maybe just not blogged about very much aspect of my life I included it.  Open up and say AHHHHHHHHH.

And for your kicks today...enjoy the video. My kids were on the floor laughing so hard. If I didn't know any better I'd say I had a little too much happy gas. But this dental office ( Galva Family Dentistry ) doesn't use that. So I guess it's fair I'm just being my normal quirky self.

Thursday, December 29, 2011

Year in Review

I so don't want to do this.  I could easily not, no one says that I have to.  For a few reasons though I will.  A) I see a lot of other bloggers/runners doing it.  Yes, I can be a total copy cat.  So what.  B) I think I need to put it out there to help set goals and some serious accountability for next year.

I will be honest, though, there is a part of me that is struggling with the whole low self esteem.  I just want to beat myself down and say "see, you are not that great at fact, YOU SUCK".  And that comes when I just compare myself to myself.  Never mind the craziness that flows through my head when I *gulp* compare myself to other totally awesome runners (and I don't mean the Kara Goucher kind...duh, I'll never be like her.  I mean the other sahms just like me).  Don't judge, you probably do that too from time to time.  Even though I put this out there, I know better.  I don't need the lectures.   I am me and love me for who I am.  Sure, I can leave some room for improvement, but really I AM AWESOME!

Maybe it's just better to say that I've had a fairly sucky  year.  Here are my stats to show why:

Total runs: 131
Total miles run: 653.11
Duration: 102:40:03
Average pace: 9:30

Let's break that down.  Total runs.  131.  Really?!?!?  There are 365 days in a year.  That leaves 234 days that I didn't run.  Total suck.  Miles run: 653.  The reason this bothers me so much is that I can run 20-30-almost 40 without thinking too much about it.  Those 653 include almost 100 of those crazy long distances.  So in terms of training (and not racing) I only ran a little over 500 miles.  That doesn't even make sense.  I said it before that I know I can put out the distance with little to no training.  What awesomeness could I unleash if I took my training seriously.  I'll be honest, I don't know what to do about it.  I DO NOT like following a plan.  Ick!  Oh, I love structure & predictability, but do not box me in and tell me what to do. Anyway.  Duration & average pace: I talk about this in a previous post.  I'm very neutral about this fact.  Neither happy nor sad.  I know 9:30 is still a good pace, especially if I am running really long distances.  It only bothers me in the sense that the previous year my average pace was 8:30 and before that 8:00.  In terms of comparing me to me, this slightly (ok, really) sucks.  Running wise I'm still happy.  My pace is not what makes or breaks me.  I enjoy my running for it's running.  Plain & simple.

Next year: I'm at a standstill.  I don't have any very specific goals or races.  I think that is because of the year I'm coming off, my hope & ambition is sort of crushed right now.  I don't think it can get much "worse" than this.  Unless I don't run at all.  That would be a total nightmare.  Anyway, so I had a total sucky year.  Perhaps I needed to sink down this low to be able to move back up.  I know something needs to change, but will tackle that in the coming days with the fresh new insight of a new year.  One thing is for sure, I'm not giving up!!  We'll see what 2012 brings me!!

Have a Happy New Year everyone!!!!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

Making it count

This week has been going miserably in exercise terms. Last week, Wednesday, more specifically, was the first day the kids had no school. I went to the Y and spent 3 whole hours there. It was awesome! I ran, lifted a full set of weights for upper & lower body, did some ab work and finished off with a 1/2 mile swim. Yeah, bay-bee, that is what I'm talking about! I would love to do that everyday! I figured with this 2 1/2 week Christmas break I was so gonna rock it Carmen style. Then....

Then....the holidays set in. Because I had stalled so much on any Christmas preparations I was left going non stop and with little sleep. That set me up for an epic fail with the great & awesome exercise plan. Oh and it also set me up for a lot of high calorie, junk food, non stop snacking binges. I've never denied that I LOVE FOOD! Mmmmm, nom - nom - nom, get me something to eat now! Healthy or not, just get me some food and nobody gets hurt!

Ok, but hey, it's the holidays! Enjoy it! I only live once. I will only have 1 Christmas where I'm 35. This is it! I'm all about everything in moderation and eating healthy, paying attention to calories in vs. calories out...blah, blah, blah. There are a few times where I'm like "screw it!". Just forget it all and live in the moment and just not care. This has been one of those times. While it's all great at the time, I fully realize that it all catches up to me and I must take the time to undo what I have carelessly, albeit blissfully, done.

Another aspect to this all is that with the kids off of school, my mojo and normal schedule gets all out of whack. Having 6 kids is demanding, even when most of them are older. They demand my attention and want to *gasp* spend time with me. I embrace the whole "I only live once" philosophy in many areas of my life especially with my kids. This will be the only Christmas where I have a 16 - 4 year old. Enjoy it! I am taking advantage of the late night movie marathons, the making cookies and treats all day, the let's deep clean the living room now that I have 6 extra helpers to make it go faster days (hey, who said everything had to be done on their terms and to their advantage?).

As much as I am embracing & enjoying this all, I still can't ignore the effects it has on my body. Since it has been a week it is REALLY adding up!! Mentally I'm always making plans for this workout and that workout. The reality of the above mentioned 6 kids at home, keep thwarting my plans. Which is ok to a large degree. It just makes me think outside of the box. So when I took the kids swimming last night I turned it into a workout. I did not stand still while in the pool. I ran/jogged in place or did lunges and squats. If we ventured into the deep end I did not take any floatation device with me or hang onto the sides. I had to tread water the whole time. A few times I had to do that with a 4 year old attached to my neck. That IS quite the workout. The living room we deep cleaned required a lot of lifting a moving since I not only cleaned but re-arranged the whole room.

My point though is I don't have to spend 3 hours at the gym to call it a workout. Life is a workout! At least my life is and I have no doubt many of yours is too. If you find yourself short on time or sleep and just can't get it all in like you want to. Find little ways to work it in and make it count. It's better than nothing. I reminded a running friend recently when he lamented about his speed that he is faster than the person sitting on the couch. Sometimes that is all that matters.

Saturday, December 24, 2011

Christmas: Peterson Style

I know it is only Christmas Eve, yet we are done with our Christmas with the kids.  This is a tradition that we started many years ago.  Since we always travel on Christmas day (we have only spent 1 Christmas at home with the kids) we want the kids to be able to enjoy their presents (mostly toys) before we pack up & head out of town.  There is no fun in opening gifts the night before or the morning of then saying "ok, leave it all, we have to leave".  So we started opening gifts no later than December 23.  Sometimes it has even been the 22nd or 21st.  Whatever floats our boat depending on what we have going on, if we are ready and how anxious we are to get the kids their presents.

I will admit this year has been very hard and just plain different for us (perhaps mostly me who "does" most of the Christmas stuff).  Jim & the kids put up the Christmas tree while I was in Mexico.  Part of me wanted to protest that they didn't wait for me.  Yet, I knew that it was a detail that I had to just not worry about.  Then when I thought I would have had 2 free weekends to shop & prepare, we ended up devoting to the last moments of our good friend Joy who, at the age of 43, lost her battle to cancer after only 3 months of diagnosis.  That has been really hard on all of us and that really just changes your whole perspective on life and such.  Especially Christmas & what it's really all about.  The birth of our Lord Jesus Christ is what our focus should be.  Considering our dear friend just entered into the presence of our Savior, we should be thinking about and HAPPY about nothing else this holiday season.

Part of me just didn't care about any presents whatsoever.  And even though, I am a HUGE giver, I even resorted to not giving any presents to anyone except our kids.  That was REALLY hard for me.  I said I would at least bake something for people, but for the most part I just didn't have time.  The last few weeks have been busy crazy with something going every single night and many of my days packed as well.  Don't forget we have a birthday last week too. All added up, by Wednesday, December 21 I did not have one single present bought.  Finally instinct and human nature kicked in and within less than 24 hours I had all presents bought & wrapped ready to go.

So, per tradition, last night we had our Peterson family Christmas.  Jim "disappeared" for about 2 hours leaving me frustrated and about to lose it.  Unbeknown to me though he set on out a quest to get me what he knew I really wanted for Christmas.  He had pretended to not know what I wanted & kept asking me for hints & ideas about what to get.  I didn't want to outright tell him....yes, I admit, I felt like he SHOULD know what I've been aching for.  Long story short, cause I never told you guys about it, I accidental ruined my ipod  touch that he had gotten me for me birthday day a year & a half ago.  I've worked really hard to not whine & complain or feel entitled to one, but I wanted another one really really bad.  Even then I didn't feel like I deserved one or deserved to ask for one.  So I didn't want to tell him that is what I wanted.  Anyway, he went missing and I was a little ancy & impatient about WHHHHHHY he was nowhere to be found.  Lo an behold he DID go on a quest to get what I wanted, but since it was last minute there was none in stock in our town so he drove 45 minutes away to hunt down, find & buy one just for me.   (heart warming awwwwwwe)

Jim saved the night & we were able to all sit down & open presents and enjoy time with just our kids.  Today they are enjoying their gifts and I am getting some baking/treat making done.  So enjoy our pictures from last night.  Please do stop & consider the real reason for Christmas.  It WILL bring you greater joy than any ipod, toy, gadget or anything you get this holiday season.

Merry Christmas from the Peterson Family Zoo
 and especially those animals
(side note about the pictures, there was face painting at the mall so some of the kids had things on their faces.  I wasn't worried about us looking picture perfect.  I like to capture us just as we are.)

Friday, December 23, 2011

Team Tough Chik

I am beyond excited to be introducing a new running adventure. I came across this racing team through another blogger that I follow.  I honest don't remember how I came across this awesome running mom blogger.  But I have been following her blog for several months now.  It's one of the attributing factors that helped me start this blog, She Runs Everywhere, to also share my running & life with you all.  Tonia also gets the credit for introducing me to Team Tough Chik . She posted about it, so I check it out and now I am also part of this team.

Having run track & cross country in jr. high & high school, I know all about being part of a team.  But, I have never been part of a racing team.  There are many out there.  I've seen & heard about them, but never pursued being part of one. Not sure why.  Just because, I guess.  This one caught my attention though and it gets the honor of being my first racing team ever.  Who knows if I will pursue other teams.  For now, I am very happy & excited to be part of this one.

Since having joined I have been connected with several other racing women (both running & biking) all around the world.  Mostly local, meaning within  North America, but we have a few others.  So we can rightly claim that we are a global team.  Many of these women also blog and race in a wide variety of capacities.  It has been very inspiring.  There is a big sense of us being one big community that just gets each other despite our differences.  We are united as one under the claim that we are ONE TOUGH CHIK!

If you are a woman (sorry guys!) and want to join me & the many others....don't wait!  You can only join through January 1st to be part of the 2012 team.  It will be fun and a new adventure...,.I can't wait!!!!

Thursday, December 22, 2011

Speed....I am speed.

You know, I am the mother of two boys and it goes without saying that we've seen the movie Cars a million and one times.  So anytime I say or think the word speed, my title phrase pops into my mind.  I can't say that the topic has consumed me, but it's fair to say it's on my mind.

Just to clarify, I am referring to my lack of speed or maybe it's more of my loss of speed in the last few years.  I fully realize that speed is all in the eye of the beholder.  In terms of running & racing, speed is extremely relevant depending on who you are talking to or running/racing with.  If you ask Ryan Hall about me, he'd likely say "WHO?"  But if you ask Rob Buck he'd likely say "she is the best runner EVER". (ok, maybe not best ever, but he is quite the supporter & "fan", check out his blog!)  More than likely those reading this will not know one or both of the people I just mentioned.  So it's fair to say I'm no Olympic or nationally known runner, but I fair quite well within the local/area spectrum.

Anyway, I've been running since I was 10 or so.  I don't remember exactly when I started.  I was a kid.  Who doesn't run as a kid?!?!?!  I've just always been running.  Anyway, I had speed and didn't know it.  Or realize it.  Or really didn't believe that me & my speed could do awesome things.  So I sat in the backseat and let other peers do awesome things with their speed.  There was a short period of time where I began to believe that I could really be good at running.  All it took was a newbie freshman team mate who thought I was all that & a bag of chips.  So I began to believe and try and work at this.  I was right on the verge of becoming one of the best.  In an instant though, all it took was a cutting remark from another team mate who told me "I would NEVER be a good runner" and it all faded away.  (This is all part of a much bigger, soon to be released post, that details more of my personal history and why I am they way I am).

It wasn't until I left home & joined that Army that my potential was released.  Heck ya, they believed that I was awesome.  For the first time in my life someone believed in me & my running awesomeness.  However, my choice to have a family outweighed anything else I wanted, running or not.  And that is not a bad thing.  I would not give back any one of my children to gain anything in the running field.  So as quickly as my running began to take off, my life changed course and never went back to being the same.  I spent my prime running years giving birth to many precious gifts from God and making my life with Jim.  Not to mention with time I got *gasp* older.  Neither is a ideal for improving my running skills.  Surprisingly though I maintained my speed though out all those years.

As I mentioned in my previous post my running has drastically changed in the last 3 - 4 years.  Everything from how, when, where & why I ran changed.  My habits changed.  My point of views changed.  I would actually say I had learned a lot from those baby bearing years and had become a "mature" runner.  (Not to be confused with being a know it all runner.  Cause I don't have it all figured out or know it all!)  Slowly, but surely I have seen MY speed slip away.  (I put an emphasis on MY because I really am talking about comparing myself to myself.  It is the only right & fair person to compare one's self to).

In many ways I am ok with getting slower.  Sure some people can run a marathon just as fast as they can run a 5k and maintain that insane speed for 26.2 miles.  Rest assured, I am not one of those people.  So, the fact that I run 13.1 or 26.2 or 36 miles (my current longest run to date) at a slower pace than my 5k is O.K. with me.  In fact, it makes perfect sense.  So that means it would make sense that my training for such events would take on a slower pace.  I saw a minute slip of my average time the first year.  Now, looking back over this year I have seen yet another minute slip off my average pace.  I'm not sure how to feel about this.  Am I ok with this?  Something tells me no.  But what am I going to do about it?

Believe it or not, I think part of it is attributed to my ceasing of treadmill use.  I actually think I need that bad boy to move me.  To force me to move my legs at that faster speed.  When I run outside I often run alone, I think that lack of accountability or someone challenging me has made it easy to settle back into my current pace.  In fact, I know if I want to run at a faster pace, all I have to do is join up with some guys from a local running group & they will challenge & move me.  Buuut, no offense guys, I like running with you, I really do, but I don't want to run with smelly male species that find amusement at how loud they can fart.  I can only handle you so much.  Now...give me a female running group that swaps birth stories, mothering tips and vent about their argument with their husband the previous night.  Oh yeah.  Bring it on.  We do have some like that in our community, but they meet sporadically and not enough for what I need.  So I'm constantly challenged in this area.  Treadmill vs. outside.  Running group vs. running alone.  Men vs. woman.  I'm not all or nothing in this area.  I need a little bit of everything to keep me moving & challenged.  Yet it seems to be a lot more all or nothing.

I've rambled on enough about my & my speed "issues".  I'm trying to give you more insight of who I am.  I'm not a surface type person.  I go deep into who I am and if others let me, who they are.  That's not easy to sum up in a few short sentences or paragraphs. So bear with me and I plunge deeper from time to time.  I promise all my posts won't be this long & in depth.

Where my speed goes from here has me wondering. I have a planned 5k coming up.  I'm interested to see if my whole I need a treadmill for speed theory will make a difference in this upcoming race.  Until then, if you see me bouncing around, chanting things around speed, I'm just being my usual quirky self.  Nothing wrong with that.

Wednesday, December 21, 2011


This is partly a running blog.  As much as I L~O~V~E to run, the rest of my life very often takes over.  And even though people think I run "all the time" or in "crazy, insane" amounts, it really is only a small sliver of my daily life.  Lately I haven't been too great a writing about my running.  For a few reasons.  The above mentioned, of course.  I am one versus seven others who demand my love, time, energy & resources.  Also because, I've been hiding a secret.

I have found no good way to tell you all this.  So I just didn't say too much at all.  I'm sure you will all still love & accept me just the same.  But, I......have been running on a treadmill. *annnnnd cue dramatic music*  I know you all think I'm crazy, but this has been kind of a big deal to me.  I haaaate running on treadmills!!!!! 

I have not always been this way.  In my past I did nothing but run/train on treadmills.  I had to.  With 4 kids ages 5 & under.  In a town where I didn't grow up & didn't have many friends.  I had no other option.  I had to use the Y treadmills and only during the babysitting hours to get my running done.  Back then I never raced any more than a 5k and I never ran any longer than 5 miles.  That has changed over the last 3 - 4 years.  I now have older children who can stay home unattended.  If not then I have plenty of friends to help out with watching them.  I also run a lot longer and my races seem to have no ceiling on how long or how far I can go.  Running & training on a treadmill doesn't make sense anymore.

Within the last few years I also transitioned to being an outside and early morning runner.  I loved being outside! And I loved having my run done by first thing in the morning, leaving my day wide open to the rest of my life.  It really started as a way to hang with some girlfriends who were going on a weekly run together in the early morning hours.  It doesn't seem as scary or intimidating to run with a group of people when it's dark outside.  Or when that big rottweiler chases you down the road, you have your girlfriends there to shoo her away.  It was an all too perfect situation.  But, we know all good things often come to an end.  Soon our little group dissolved and yet I was hooked on the outdoors and predawn workouts.  So I pushed on forward, by myself.

Lately though, I've been having a lot of problems with my legs.  Things were beginning to hurt all the time.  I was frustrated on many levels.  This whole running by myself wears on me.  I do have one person I consider a running partner, but it only works out for us to run together every 6 weeks....maybe.  Honestly, it's hard to find someone who will get up at 4 a.m. and run like a maniac.  With the season changing & it is darker and colder I just found myself struggling.  The two combined left me not wanting to run at all.  I knew I had to do something.

That is when I moved indoors.  In some ways I hate it!  The first few times was torture.  I had not been on a treadmill in probably 9 months or so.  How boring is it to look straight forward.  Sure they have t.v.'s right in front of me, but I"m not a big t.v. watching person.  And I'm surrounded by people.  Who probably look at me and wonder "what is she doing?!?!" when I sing, clap or dance to whatever song I am listening to.  (Yes, I do those things often and with great gusto I run alone).  Maybe that is a little cocky to think that people look at or notice me.  I'm not even sure why I care.  I like being me. 

I've been sticking with the treadmill only for my running.  It's a complete love/hate relationship.  Since I started though I have not had any of my usual aches & pains.  None.  Gone.  If I watch myself in the reflection of the window I can watch  & evaluate my form.  That is a good thing because I do believe a lot of my problems stem from this.  I'm also hoping this will help me with my speed.  A whole other subject that I will leave for another post.

For now, I finally have my big secret out there.  I plan to stick to this through December.  Then I want to mix in some outdoor running.  I miss it.  I step outside almost every morning & no matter the weather I take a deep breath & think.....oh this would be great to run in!

Thursday, December 15, 2011


I came across this on Donald Miller's blog.

Is that not amazing?!?!?! 

This spoke to me on so many levels & in so many areas, I just had to share.  I wish I could come up with just the right words to post for you to convey how this touched me.  Yet, I have sat here for close to an hour, writing and re-writing a post that just can't seem to come together.  I have this imaginary pile of crumpled up papers around me.  So frustrating!

At least, I can share.  Maybe someday it will all come together for me.  Maybe not.

Wednesday, December 14, 2011


I was out at the mall last night doing gift wrap for the GHS band boosters.  A gentleman came along and started conversing with me.  Not generic conversation.  One on one personal conversation.  Problem, though....I have no idea who he was.  I wasn't coming up with a name to a face.  He seemed to keep it simple and short and if I had any doubt if I really knew him or him me, he referred to my husband by first name.  D'oh!

Later on he came back.  This time he wanted something wrapped so I had to continue to talk with him like I knew exactly who he was.  He had plenty of conversation to offer while he stood there & I wrapped.  He asked about what sports we (our kids) are playing right now.  He told me the name of his son, however at that crucial moment he had shifted his plastic bag in his hands & I didn't hear his son's name.  Based on what he was telling me though I figured out he has a 6th grade son.  Great....that narrows it down to a few hundred boys.   I kept trying to sneak glances at his face hoping to get a good look and have a ah-ha moment.  That is hard to do while focusing on wrapping a present, carrying on the conversation and trying to not look too creepy or flirtatious in the process.  I offered him a gift tag and watched while he filled it out hoping to at least get a first name.  Nope, the gift was from SANTA!  Good grief, can I catch a break?!?!?!

The whole thing amused me and I had to keep from laughing out loud right there on the spot.  I considered just saying...dude, I have no clue who you are.  But the guy was so nice, I didn't want to break his spirit OR let's be honest, make myself look like an idiot.  I finished his present & sent him on his merry way.


Hopefully you will get TWO posts today.  By making said statement I'm hoping to come through for you all.  I did already start one post, but realized it's a little too deep for me to hurry through.  And I am in a hurry.  For a few reasons.  I'm trying to get the whole blogging thing done right away in my schedule, that way when time doesn't go my way I don't feel too bad for not getting it done.  I notice a lot of bloggers get their posts done first thing in the morning.  Although my morning often starts on average at 5 a.m., that is TOO early to blog.  Those first moments are saved for time with God and running/exercise.  Sorry you are not at the very top of my list.  (But pretty darn close!)

Anyway, I'd love to avoid this day like the plague.  Since, I have to go to the dentist.  *Aaaaaahhhhhh*, did someone just scrape their fingernails down a chalkboard.  No?  Really?  Cause that is what I hear every time I say the word dentist.  I mean, really can't I just run 100 miles today & not go to the dentist.  How about give birth?  I'd rather give birth ANY DAY instead of going to the dentist again.

In case you are not following my clues I DO NOT LIKE GOING TO THE DENTIST!!!!  Even though, at one time, I deeply aspired to be a dentist.  It's not the dentist himself, it's just what needs to be done.  Since I was not blessed in the littlest bit in the dental gene area this area has me whining & crying like a rotten toddler.

I am happy to report that I did run 5 miles today and swam laps in the pool (I forgot to count my laps, but I'm guessing at least 10).  Alright, I'm avoiding the, I go.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

(Insert title here)

I'm so not feeling the creative juices in terms of a title for this rambly mambly blog post.  Why does there need to be one anyway.  Oh, yes, because I'm OCD and just can't go without one.  Will drive me crazy.  Short drive, huh?!!?!  So insert your own, or just read on to what I had written to begin with:

A week!?!?!?!  How could you let me go a week and not blog?!?!?!? (yes, it's totally YOUR fault).  Actually, I did START to blog so that should count for something.  I just didn't finish that post.  It's still sitting there, waiting until who knows when.  I might break down & make it into a vlog since it will take me an eternity to get it all written down.  The only reason I haven't yet is A) time and 2) I was afraid of breaking down & crying too easily.  I know y'all are being understandable about me just getting back from Mexico & then losing my friend Joy to cancer.  *siiiiigh*, yeah it has been rough.  But really, I'm O.K.!  (That's a lead to whole other blog post, so I'll just leave it at that).

Since I have you here I'm sure you will more than understand, that if I don't post this now and get out the door I will not get a workout done at all today.  Well minus my pilates class this a.m.  Or even if I don't workout I will not get all my housework done.  I'm at my daily dilemma.  Go workout OR get a lot of stuff done in the house.  I know it's a win-win no matter what.  But I either workout and not get all my housework done OR get all my housework done and feel like I am a fat cow.  Yes, I said FEEL.....I realize that I am not!

I'm having this dilemma more than usual as I have changed my training habits (note, I did not say plan) for the time being.  I KNOW, I have not told you about that YET.  Again....a whole other blog post that I have mentally written yet failed to get it onto this actual site.  If y'all could just tap into the vast craziness of my mind you would be hooked up with all sorts of great stuff.  Ok, so I'm off now.  I have posted.  I feel a little better about my slacking blogging habits.  Time to get some work done!!!!

Monday, December 5, 2011

Hammer Time

Per usual, I have so much to blog about.  What I really want to blog about, I don't want to.  Wait, does that make sense?  I want to write this big beautiful post about my friend Joy, who lost her battle to cancer last night.  However, I know that if I "go there" I will sit here bawling.  I have already bawled bucket loads.  I'm honestly cried out at this time.

So I went to the Y this morning & taught my usual cardio class at 6 a.m.  I wasn't feeling it too much, but got through the motions ok.  I did have SOME fun.  I introduced a bunch of Christmas music & it was hard to not smile & have fun.  It was also hard to not think about Joy and hold back some tears.  Luckily getting all sweaty helped mask any tears that fell.

Then I went back to the Y after I got the kids to school.  I had me a nice good run on the treadmill.  I don't know the last time I ran on a treadmill.  Sometime eariler this year?  Said subject is in the works for it's own post.  I knew I needed to take all this emotion and grief and just hammer it out on the machine.  I selected a treadmill in front of a tv that sported a channel that I like.  Not sure why, I didn't watch the tv at all.  I blared my music, losing myself to its sounds, rhythms & lyrics.  And I ran fast & hard.  Perhaps faster & harder than I have in months.  I also forgot my water bottle.  I didn't care.  I wanted to be thirsty.  I wanted to hurt.  I wanted this to be one bada** run.  After all, if my friend could fight cancer, I can certainly endure an intense 3.5 mile run.  Stupid cancer....take that 3.5 miles & SHOVE IT!  *ptttttttth*

I promise to give you a nice post on my beautiful friend Joy.  For now, I leave you with a photo of us together.  She was such a good friend and I will miss her.

Wednesday, November 30, 2011

Have you noticed?

It is cold outside. No, not the sun shines brightly on this nice 40 degree afternoon. I mean at 5 a.m. when it's dark and C~O~L~D! It's been a rude awakening from my trip to Mexico where I wore shorts/capris & tshirt the whole time.

Don't worry, I haven't forgotten about telling you about Mexico. I just was sidetracked by my thoughts from my run this morning. My first run in almost 3 weeks. It was weird.

Granted, I have run in colder temperatures. I'd don't usually mind it at all. I think it has been the lack of transition that I had. I mean 3 weeks ago I ran in 60 degree weather and it was "so hot" that day. Then I was lazy, snuggled in my bed every morning, enjoying it's warmth. Then went into my Mexico temps. It wasn't hot down there at all. Maybe a day or two in the mid 80's that if you stood in the sun it wore on you. Otherwise, average mid to upper 70's. The only time I was "cold" down there was the night before we left. That evening it had gotten down to *gasp* the 60's, but even more so it was windy. It was the only time I put pants on. I guess it's one of those things that it's all relative.

So this weirdness of my run. I don't know how to explain it. I almost didn't run. I wanted to stay in bed. I almost talked myself into running this afternoon, knowing full well that I likely wouldn't. Part of me is thinking "WHAT IS WRONG WITH YOU?!?!?!" Someone slap me & tell me to get with it. All that spunky & drive that I usually have is hiding somewhere & not coming out very easily.

Once I did get running I was ok. Other than being cold. I was able to try out my new Muzino breath thermo jacket this morning. Very nice! Once I started out I warmed up. I knew I would. Sometimes taking that first step is just the hardest. A lot of mixed feelings & thoughts as I passed on my 4.something route.

It's not so much that I hurt or anything during my run. I just felt weird & out of place. A few times I snapped out of a foggy almost stumbling around trance. Where am I? What am I doing? Should I really be doing this? 4 miles? What was I thinking. Sure I did 30 miles few weeks ago, but I've done NOTHING since then. I passed mile 1 and thought about turning around. 2 miles is a good start. Repeated the same thought process when I figured it would be close to 3 miles. I literally started to turn, but turned back and talked myself into the full 4.  I was extremely surprised how fast & evenly paced I kept the whole time.  Guess I was on more autopilot that I had realized.

I'm working to get back at it. It's just a different kind of weird phase. As tough & determined that I am (and I have no doubt that I will stay that way) there is a part of me that is fighting the urge to just not run at all. Which is insane to think because I obsess over running. It is one of the top things that I can not go a day, even a few hours & not think about. I can't give up. Not now. Not ever. Not until I'm in my grave. And then I'll just be running up on them streets of gold. I just know it!

We'll see what tomorrow's run will bring. More coldness, I'm sure of that : )

Tuesday, November 29, 2011

I'm baaaaaack!

I have a boatload to tell you. Yet....SO MUCH to do. So I'll post my good bye that I recorded for y'all. Give me a few days to breath and I'll get back to you about my trip. It's good to be home!

Thursday, November 24, 2011

Happy Thankgiving!

It's 1:30 a.m. on Thanksgiving. I told myself just get on, post the vlog, bid you all a good day and get off. Ha! Well, I'm gonna try. I just have so much to tell you!

When we embarked on this trip (my father & I) we had no idea what it would bring. Well, we had some of an idea. But so far, each day has been an adventure and we don't know what the next day will bring.

On this Thanksgiving day it will be like none other that I have spent. For the first time in 17 years I will be without my family. Family, as in, my husband & children. I am still with my dad thus being with family. I will likely not eat any turkey. As much as I LOOOOVE Mexican food, I am beginning to miss American food. Some of it at least. I could use me a good ole heap of mashed potaters & gravy right now and some cranberries. Ohh, someone save me some pumpkin pie!

In all seriousness I really REALLY miss Jim & the kids! I'll just leave it at that cause I WILL start crying and I don't want to wake my dad right now with a ruckus. It's a tough Thankgiving being away from home, yet it's also so neat and adventurous. On the trip side of things it has been an amazing trip. There will be none like it for SEVERAL years, possibly never. So it's a little bittersweet.

Ok.....O.K.! I'm getting all emotional and sidetracked......

For certain reasons I don't want to go into too much detail about the trip just yet. Since I was able to get a good connection I decided to treat you all to a little vlog that I had promised. I also have pictures up on facebook if you are my little friend over there. I promise to give a more detailed update after I get home. I'm hoping for another vlog opportunity. I know for sure that I won't be able to be on the internet much again until I get back home & even then please remember I have so much to do after being gone for over a week.

Enjoy the vlog!

Wednesday, November 16, 2011

Wildcat 50k

No, that is not a typo.  I meant to put 50 & not 5.  I case you are mathematically challenged (don't worry, I am) that comes out to 31 miles.  Yes, I ran the whole thing.  Because....ya know....I had NOTHING else to do on a Sunday afternoon.

I wasn't even sure I was going to run this race until just a few days before.  So, of course, I did little to no training for the event.  That is nothing new anyway.  I don't let that keep me from going and and having fun anyway.

Distance wise I know I can get the miles done.  The terrian was quite a challenge.  Where I live I don't have such a place to train.  I can swing over and catch the overpass by my house & call it a "hill".  Otherwise it's pretty flat where I run at on a daily basis.  The weather was unexpected.  When I had packed my clothes for this race we had been having cold 40 degree days.  When the race actually came it was mid 50's by 7 a.m. and reached 60.  Not exactly long heavy sleeve shirt & tights weather.  I was roasting by the end of my first loop.  I was able to at least ditch the shirt and put on something much lighter. (Thank goodness for my Goodwill buy the day before).  It was still warm.  And windy.  Because of where we ran though, we were sheilded from the wind.

I actually felt very good being out there running.  My knee started to bother me.  I think it's the steep hills that make it hurt.  Same thing happened at Screaming Pumpkin, another hilly race.  I have never had any problem with this area of my knee.  Only the last two big races.  So I don't think it's running itself, but the hills.  I knew there was a reason I never liked them!!!!  Not counting my stops in between each loop my total run time was 6:19.  All together with my stops and considering I didn't start until 10 minutes after the start gun my time was 7:04.

This race is very low key & laid back.  Other than a start gun & running clock there is not much else official about it.  You go out & run 5 loops to reach a 50k.  If you don't want to or can't then you do what you can.  When you are done you write your name & time down in a notebook.  There is no tshirt, no awards, etc.  Just the satisfaction of going a job well done.  I can live with that!

Here is a slideshow of pictures that I took along the way. A few are scenery I saw along the way, but for the most part you are looking at the path that I ran 5 times over. The course is so beautiful and yet so challenging at the same time. I know most people think I'm nuts for being as I am, but how can you not love it?!?!?!!?!?

Wednesday, November 9, 2011

Blame It On the Rain

Remember that song from the 80's by Milli Vanilli?  I don't care that those guys were lip syncing & got caught....I like that song.  I like Milli Vanilli.  That's right, you heard me.  When I married Jim I discovered he had this controversial cd.  He more than once commented on how he should get rid of it. you don't mister.  A) I like the music and want to be able to listen to it until all eternity.  Due to it's nature you can't just go buy it.  I don't think so.  At least not back in the mid 90's you couldn't.  Them bad boys were off the shelf and only to be found in rare places.  Anyway...and B) said cd could be worth a fortune, some day.  When the Milli Vanilli dudes die and their name goes up in history.  That's right....I will still have the cd.  Until then though, I will continue to listen to their songs on my ipod.  And every time the phrase is said I will hear that familiar tune played in my head, I might even sing it out loud for you : )

O.K.....yes, I am a dork and that has nothing to do about what I wanted to say.  It was just on my mind.

For the 3rd day in the last week my running plans have been foiled by the rain.  Honestly that hasn't been a completely bad thing.  I'm in a slight running funk.  The first time it happened was last Thursday and I ended up not running or exercising at all.  Which, I think, that is why I had such a big burst of energy and optimism on Friday when I posted last, then proceeded to go out & run 6.5 miles with enthusiasm & ease.  Part of that was also fueled by guilt for skipping a run.  This week though, I have yet to run.  I have had some cardio and pilates so I don't feel too bad/guilty.  And to give myself a lot of credit the last two days I've had my bag packed, clothes set out and I was primed and ready to go.  Only to awaken to the sound of pouring rain.  So. not. fair!!!!

Yes, I understand there are treadmills.  I even have one sitting in my own front hall way.  Amazingly even though I was once a treadmill junkie, I beg & plead with you now....DON'T MAKE ME GET ON THERE!!!!  I'm not desperate yet.  I'm sure I can pushed to that pointed where I give in and run on that contraption, but I have a long way to get there.  I'd rather cross train in the time being.  I do have my annual triathlon approaching in January.  It's time to start slipping in some pool & bike time.

It has also occurred to me to take it easy this week anyway.  I'm a seriously considering running in a 50k (30 miles) this weekend.  At this point I'm 90% sure I'm going to do it.  So if I'm going to run that then, yeah, it might be a good idea to not overdo and burn myself out during the week.  I'll keep you posted.

P.S. After typing this all out I did some internet searching.  Of course...NOW days this stuff is easily accessible.  That of course, dispels my beliefs that my cd/music is of rarity.  Still, I hang onto it for keepsake purposes.  I am a extremely sentimental person.  And I did read where one of the M.V. guys did die.  Once I read that it did ring a bell.  Sometimes you temporarily forget an event then think...."oh yeah, I do remember that happening."  I didn't want to completely re-write my post to make it look like I knew what I was talking about the whole time.  Lesson learned: do internet search first, then post.  Another lesson learned, but you knew anyway....I am still a dork.  So for you & your viewing pleasure enjoy the video:

Friday, November 4, 2011


It is a nice fall day.  Much better than yesterday.  I was going to blog about it & call it "Blame It on the Rain".  I might still do that.  However the dilemma remains before me.  I have a house to clean, a nap to take (have to stay up all night to chaperone a lock in) and blogging to do.  However, I want to run.  And the weather outside is awesome!  I came across the phrase the other day....if you have time to have time to run.  Uh, many times have I checked facebook today?!?!?  I'd answer that but then you might want to admit me to some kind of addict group.  So, I could do the above mentioned....clean, nap, facebook, but I am going to go run.  Here is why:

I'll catch up with you all later.  After my run.  I AM going to be up all night!!!!

Tuesday, November 1, 2011

Screaming Pumpkin Marathon


I made y'all a little vlog about the Screaming Pumpkin.  I'm waiting for it to load to youtube.  I have the post started.  I have the pictures loaded.  Just waiting on youtube......*drumming fingers in anticipation*  Until then I am going to log off & work on my family blog to get posted about Halloween.  There is always something to do!

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

It's all in the numbers

I have more to post about my cousins death.  I could write about it non stop.  It leaves me with so much to think about.  Yet, I don't want it to consume me in an unhealthy way.  And although this is my blog and I can write what I want when I want.....maybe somethings are better left un-said or un-blogged about.  The funeral is yet pending.  That will be my biggest hurdle yet in this whole ordeal.  For now, to some degree, I admittedly put on my blinders and carry on with life.

I haven't ran this week.  I taught my cardio class on monday, yogalates on tuesday and that has been it so far.  Rewind back to sunday night I was thinking on what I should run this week.  I like to have a general mental plan of what I want to accomplish in the upcoming week in terms of running and/or working out.  Then it dawned on me....I have a race this weekend.  A BIG race.  I had to laugh at myself, because yeah I should perhaps taper prior to such a race.  We know how I am with my training "plans".  I don't.  I don't have one.  I don't follow one.  I just run.

So this race is called the Screaming Pumpkin.  I will be running 4 laps of 6.55 miles.  Wait a the math....isn't that a mara.....UT UT...STOP RIGHT THERE!  Don't say it.   I am not running a marathon this weekend.  I am running 4 laps of 6.55 miles.  This is different than a marathon because I won't be running non stop.  I'll run a loop, hang out with my friends, then go out on another, etc.  Running a marathon means heading out running non-stop (more less, unless you count bathroom breaks, etc) for 26.2 miles.  I'm not doing that.  I'm not running a marathon this weekend.  Just a cumulative of 26.2 miles.

This race is different.  It's a race against time.  More specifically it's a race against the strike of midnight.  The race starts at 6 p.m.  You have the next 6 hours (or less, if you want) to finish the 4 laps of 6.55.  The winner of the race is determined not by speed or who comes across the line first or last.  The winner is whoever can cross the finish line closest to midnight without going over.  This is very hard to do.  I did this race last year as a team.  We came within 1 minute of midnight, yet plenty more people crossed the line after us. It is still very fun trying.  If you do finish before midnight you are awarded with a wand & tiara.  Finish after and you'll be left feeling like Cinderella when you are given a pumpkin.

Really, one of the main points, is to have fun.  In addition to me going up there are two other teams of  8.  So there is a group of us women out there running & walking and having fun.  We are all different shapes, sizes, ages, running abilities, etc. yet we are there for the same goal.  To have fun.

In case you haven't realized it yet, if the race time is 6 p.m. - 12 a.m. then we'd be running primarily in the dark.  Oh and there is that little detail of the course running through a cemetery.  Not near a cemetery.  Right smack through it.  Yeah, I did this race last's a little freaky!  But it's safe and F~U~N!  I know you are giving me that weird look, I see it all the time.  I know...I'M CRAZY!!!!

Since the race is near Halloween they also encourage running in a costume.  Last year I was Minnie Mouse.  This year I am going to be a Christmas Tree.  Plenty of fun pictures are sure to follow next week when I tell you about the race.

Since I'll be doing all this running this weekend, I am taking it easy.  I do plan to sneak in a little run with the Sole Sisters tonight.  Otherwise it has been a nice break to "sleep in" and not feel guilty.  Which that still has me rising at 5:30 on most mornings.  Today I had my equivalent of sleeping til noon by not rising until 7:30 a.m.  I need it! 

I am looking forward to friday night and the Screaming Pumpkin.  I promise to give you a full update.  For now, I need to go work on my costume.

Monday, October 24, 2011


When I was running one day last week, thinking, praying, pounding the pavement away, while trying not to cry too much, I kept thinking of my Grandma.  She was the main parent/caregiver of my cousin Dustin.  His mom died when he was not quite 2.  Too young to really remember her. (oh, that thought squeezes my heart so much).  My Grandma stepped in and took on raising him & his older sister, my cousin Trista.

I was really reflecting on Grandma & all that she has been through.  What an amazing woman she is!!  Granted I can't remember everything, but I do have the gift of memory.  But I don't remember her ever crying too much or very often.  I'm sure she has.  How could she not?

To give a general over view of how much my Grandma has endured: she buried an infant twin daughter.  I know what it's like to "lose" a twin.  My John was a twin, but one that was lost at such an early gestation, that he didn't fully  develop & was "absorbed" by John.  That was rough on me, still is sometimes.  But to give birth & have to bury it, I can't imagine the heartache.  Then her husband died.  Grandma was left to raise 5 girls under the age of 10.  Every bit of me grieves not knowing my Grandpa.  It's just not fair that I didn't get to know him!!  Grandma has also endured the death of 3 of her sisters, her parents, another daughter & 3 of her grandsons.  One of them was my brother, who died when I was only 3.  I literally don't remember one ounce of any of that.  Maybe a good thing.  I don't know.  Even more of me grieves not knowing my brother.  My only brother.  Double not fair!!  Anyway, that is 10 deaths of immediate family that Grandma has had to say good-bye too.  Wow, I can barely stand the few in my life that I've had.  Of course, it's fair to say I'm just a grieving big cry baby.  Some people shoulder this type of thing better.  I do not.  I don't want to know or think about what will happen when someone really close to me dies.  I grieve those I never knew or even remember.  I try to elude such thoughts cause I just make myself a blubbering mess.

For several months, I have been wanting to write a letter to my Grandma.  I'd tell her, but she likely won't hear everything I say.  So writing it out would work the best.  I want to tell her how much I love her & how amazing I think she is.  It's a little hard, because I am a very emotional, touchy feely person.  I strongly believe in talking about your emotions and thoughts and feelings.  But I was not raised to do this.  So it can be hard for me.  It's awkward, not to mention I will be a crying wreck in the process.  However, with the semi recent deaths of her 2 sisters I am realizing more and more that Grandma may be soon or next.  She is well into her 80's and has lived a long full life.  It's only natural that her time may come sooner or later.

The situation with my Grandma is also different because of events that transpired when my Aunt died.  When Grandma became caregiver to my cousins it changed her role in all of our lives.  She was their "mom".  They were her main priority.  I understand this subject on several levels because a similar situation has happened with my own parents and my own kids are going through the same thing I went through.  I will admit, I can be a littler bitter about the whole situation. It makes everything so different, because while Grandma was so busy raising 2 of her grand kids, her role of grandma to us was given less attention.  I don't blame her (or anyone involved) or think she did any of it on purpose.  It's just how it was.  I still love her and think she is amazing.

So I need to get this letter written.  During my runs I think on what I need to tell her.  Although that usually leaves me crying (just like I've cried through out this post) so I can only think on it so much.  With anything that has happened recently I can only handle small doses.  I work & try really hard to carry on with life & not think about the impending funeral & family gathering for Dustin.  That, people, will break me. So I try to laugh as much as I can.  I try to "forget" and live life to it's fullest.  It's a day to day, moment by moment task.  I guess that is what the call LIFE.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


It's been a rough week.  Not really running wise.  I've run everyday so far.  Hooray!  That's good.  I did just talk myself out of running a double today.  The weather is ick (dreary and REALLY windy) and mentally I don't think I can make it.  Well, not completely true, but it's what I'm telling myself.  It's partly true, but it's completely true that I have a house that needs my attention.  Although I am taking the time to blog, as soon as I hit enter, I have a million loads of laundry to fold.  I bargained with myself that if I run on saturday it is ok to take today off.  To seal that deal, I texted my trusty friend Angela to run with me.  It's fail proof.

Mentally it's been a rough week.  Is the world coming to an end?  No. (Even if it was, I'd be signing "Glory Hallelujah".  Take me home Jesus....TAKE ME HOME!)  Are there worse problems out there?  Absolutely.  To me's been really rough.

I found out Monday evening that my cousin Dustin died.  This hits hard in a couple of particular ways.  Ways that I don't normally talk about, but it's my blog and I'm feeling very transparent so here it goes.  Although some of the details are a little sketchy we know that Dustin died of an overdose of drugs.  He was only 26 years old.  His mom also died this exact same way 24 years ago.  Her death was the first I can ever remember experiencing.  I was so young and it was so hard.  It changed my world, my family, my everything.

I don't even remember the last time I saw Dustin.  I want to say it was 1998 or so.  He turned into a juvenile delinquent and took off at some point, only to never return.  I am very "family is family" orientated, so it doesn't matter that it's been years since I've seen him.  I'm bonded to him, forever connected and full of memories of him growing up.  So this loss is hard for me.  I have thought of him from time to time.  I have tried to look for him on facebook, do internet searches, etc.  I'd ask my Grandma & his sister about him and all that anyone ever really knew was that he was in Florida.

For some reason, it took the state of Florida 5 days to track down my Grandma & notify her.  They are working to bring his body back, give him a proper burial and bury him next to his mother.  I'm only guessing that too much time will have lapsed to have a body viewing.  I know that sounds morbid, but I want to see his body.  I want that closure.  I want to bid him an earthly good bye.  I am a visual and memory driven person.  Looking an a closed casket will not be enough. 

This also gives me deep thought to my own struggles with suicide.  It's fairly not known unless I tell someone that I have some history in this area myself.  Yeah, I know "everyone" thinks about it from time to time.  But having tried on a few occasions and obviously failed (if I had to fail at something in life, thankfully it was this!) it brings a whole new perspective and aspect to the subject.  I've had great success in overcoming this struggle. At least in a literal sense.  I don't think it ever goes away mentally 100%.  Some have even suggested that it could be hereditary.  I don't know.  However facing the reality of it now with my cousin brings a lot of thought, hurt and more awareness to this subject.

My running has been very thought filled this week.  With all of this weighing heavily on my heart it changes how I run.  I will have to expand on that more in future posts.  I certainly have a lot to blog about with this subject.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Rain, rain....GO AWAY!

Of course, it's not raining NOW.  But it was not too long ago.  It was just a nail in my already almost shut coffin.  It has not been a good day.

I woke up late.  Late meaning, 5:15 a.m.  I can get away with this on Wednesday's because I have no class to teach.  It gives me more flexibility to do what I want.  There is a 6 a.m. running group that runs the Lake Storey trail.  I like running with the group.  They usually push me in my pace.  I REALLY need that right now.  However I am more & more aware that it's still very dark at 6:45 - 7 a.m.  Or to look at it from the other perspective, it's barely light out.  The Lake Storey trails are a little challenging.  It's surrounded by a lot of wooded areas.  Even when it's full daylight out you need to watch your step for rocks, sticks, STUPID ACORNS, and who knows what else.  With my leg giving me trouble I wasn't in the mood to push my luck by running in darkness.

I did still get up & go to the Y and hit the weights & did a little biking.  I had every intent to go out & run hills this afternoon.  Then it rained.  Before I even got to that point though my motivation was MIA.  I'm blah blah blah to the 100th degree.  I could continue to explain my mentality and thought process through the day.  But I think I'll spare you.  I'm really just having a tough week. Yeah, I pulled 4 miles yesterday and I likely will again tomorrow.  But it's not enough.

I saw a sign that said: you get what you give.  so give good.  Am I giving enough?  or good enough?  I don't think so.  And DON'T give me this "if I gave nearly as much as you do....".  Don't compare yourself to me.  I'm only comparing myself to me.  I'm capable of so much more.  I let too much get in my way and just give up too easily.

*siiighs*  yep, it's one of them days.  The rain has gone away for now.  The sun has even shone it's face a few times.  I will just move on.  Take tomorrow for what I can.  As long as my good days out weigh my bad days I'll be ok.  But it's a tough never ending battle.  No one ever said running was easy.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Interesting Information

I was clicking around my blog this morning, trying to change somethings up. I came across a few interesting facts. I probably can't explain how I found such information, I just came across it by clicking on anything & everything possible. I was exploring. It's the sure best way in figuring things out. I wouldn't say I'm a computer genius in any way (my husband is the one who minored in computer science in college), but I sure am computer smart. It's like being street start. I'm on here a lot and just get things figured out....doesn't mean I know what I'm doing half the time. Ha-ha.

Anyway...came across this bit of information or stats as it stated. I have had people from the following countries view my blog: US, Russia, Germany, Mexico, UK, Malaysia, Poland & Brazil. Now Captain Obvious knows why the US in on there. I do know people in Germany & Mexico. I have one lone friend in Brazil (HI KARI!!!!) But the other countries have me a little stumped. I admit though, I feel a little internationally known now. Ok, ok...I promise to not let it all go to my head. I'm sure those people stumbled across my blog by sheer mistake. It's not likely they were hunting for some world famous blogger. It's interesting though. And now that I know this little feature is there I might need to check it more often. Yes, I am a creeper....get over it. (See Suz, you were right on track this morning :) )

Had a cartoon sent to me. It made me bust up laughing of all my non-running friends. I have a long standing joke with a few that I will chase them with a plastic knife, if it means getting them to run. Even then they might just concede & let me stab them instead of running. One such person is my oldest off spring. I think she was switched at birth or something. I still love her & my friends even for all their non running habits.

Speaking of running (it is one of the main themes of my blog), I did run this a.m. Got my 4.25 miles in. Even though my ipod only clocked 4. I know better though. (I've been forced to use my old nano which is not nearly as accurate, but better than nothing). Me and my best friend ibuprofen headed out at 4:50 this a.m. Only because I washed some dishes was I not able to get out before 4:30. Still working on it. My run went better than I thought so I'm quite happy. We'll see what tomorrow brings.

Monday, October 10, 2011

Happy Columbus Day!!!!

Found this funny little cartoon on facebook.  It made me giggle.  Ain't that the truth, huh?

For the first time in forever my kids had school.  It's a little controversial in our town about this happening.  It's kind of a long story having to do with our teachers & their contract, etc. etc.  I very much love & support our teachers in our town.  I am friends with a lot of them.  However, I am seeing this day as another day that is getting us closer to getting out earlier in May or June.  It is suppose to be May next year.  I can't remember the last time we EVER got done with school in May.  EVER.  Including when I was in school.  So if we have to sacrifice this day, then so be it.  I don't care.  Make my kids go to school!  Get it done & over with.

Not what I meant to ramble on about.  Actually, I don't know what I want to ramble about today.  It's been a frustrating day.  Earlier I had an ear full to tell you.  I still do.  I just don't think I have the creative writing bend to make it sound all great & magical.  I think I'm too hard on myself when it comes to my writing.  A little of a perfectionist.  Me?  Perfect?  Haha, I'm the furthest thing from that.  Sorry, rabbit trail again.

So let me tell you where I am running wise.  I skipped today.  Had to teach a cardio class at 6 a.m.  Meant to go run this afternoon, but a certain Postal employee was not working today (yeah, that's right you didn't get any mail delivered today) and my day revolved around him.  So my afternoon run was nixed.  I will run per usual tomorrow morning.  I keep wanting to BE running at 4:30 a.m. but I fiddle around too much in the morning and can never seem to get going until 4:55 or 5.  (Slacker....I know!)  I'll try again tomorrow.  Getting an early start will allow me to run farther than 4 miles, plus I like to be done & back to the Y by 5:30 when it opens so I can squeeze in some weights before I have to teach at 6.  Having such a tight schedule keep me on the ball or failing miserably.  I'm often a combination of both.

My leg is still bothering me. I know exactly where the problem is, I just don't know why it's all flared up &  mad at me.  What did I ever do to my poor little body?  Oh, wait...don't answer that.  Ok, what have I done recently?  I've been good.  Just going for 4 - 7 miles run 4 - 5 days week.  That's all!  Yes, I have an innocent look on my face right now with a big ? looming above my head.

We'll see how my run goes tomorrow.  I want a good long run to clear my head.  Get my thoughts together to tell you what I want.  And to have some good prayer time with my Lord.  That is when I really enjoy my runs, when I accomplish those things within a run.  When I just get to be myself : )

Thursday, October 6, 2011


You know the drill by now.....priorities. It has been an excellent week of getting stuff done. I DID think of blogging EVERY single day. Everyday I thought of several things to blog about. Many of them were very good.

For one there was....
and then there was.......
OH and don't forget....

and there you have it a week full of blog posts. But now, eh....what was I gonna blog about?!?!?

I don't know. If it's something that is really "important" it will re-surface again and I will have the time to actually blog about it.

My three favorite blogs I read (no offense to any others) didn't blog this week either. Well, one finally did today. The others still have me checking. So maybe in some cosmic way we were all in this non blogging streak and not even realizing it. Or we just didn't take time to blog. Hmmm, it happens.

I thought I'd share some pictures of our area. I want to make my numero uno fav blogger & secret sister in law so jealous that she will want to come visit me. The pictures are just the tip of the iceberg as to how beautiful & magnificent it gets here.

Have a great weekend. I'm resting because I really need it. My leg is bordering on injured. Yikes. I was suppose to expand on that under my blog post titled "Rut R-oh". I also tell you I've had my highest mileage last week than I have in, I don't know how long, but it's been a long time.

We'll see what great blogness I bring you next week. Enjoy the pics!

Thursday, September 29, 2011

Go figure

I've had a day full of go figures. 

Yesterday I ran and was full of things to blog about.  In fact, I knew in a split millisecond that my post would be titled: STUPID ACORNS.  Captivating, I know.  Today I sat down to write it all out & it just wasn't fittin' my fancy.  Just wasn't jellin' like I thought.  It's sitting in my drafts.  I'm sure the suspense will "kill" you.

Today there was a xc meet for my girls.  I really wanted to go.  A few things stood in my way.  We have a few other family activities going on tonight.  They overlap each other.  I know I'm this awesome great supermom, but I can't seem to figure out how to be omnipresent.  And since I can't clone myself either, I just can't do it all.  However, I do have a great support group of friends to help me out in such situations and I was able to cover that aspect of the situation.

Next was the aspect of getting down to the xc meet.  It's not too far of a drive (45 min. maybe), but I'm not a fan of going by myself or spending the gas money.  Our van is great....wonderful....perfect for us.  But that whole big honkin' ton of metal is not so great, wonderful & perfect for just me.  I'd much rather catch a ride with someone and give them some cash to help with their carpooling efforts in their likely fuel efficient car.  Plus, it would be much more enjoyable to have the company of someone for the ride.  After some calls, it seemed that many other parents were also not going for a variety of reasons.  Well, at least I wasn't going to suffer too much guilt for being the "only" parent not going to the meet.

I came to a point where I decided I just wasn't going to go.  The world was not going to end.  My girls would still love me.  And there is always next weeks meet to focus on.  To help curb any would be guilt I went to the store, bought them some snacks & dropped them off at school along with a nice note sending my regrets, love & well wishes of their race.

At this point in the afternoon I had a meeting with my mentor.  I switched my phone off and focused on our meeting.  Fast forward to 3 p.m., my mentor leaves & I check my phone.  I see that I have two messages.  Before I can check them Jim calls me.  I let him know with still a slight sense of guilt I was not going.  I just couldn't find  a ride, it just wasn't going to work, blah blah blah. I finally do check my messages & my good friend Angela sent me a message an hour previous that she could come pick me up at 3 p.m. to go to the meet.  WHAT!??!?!?  AHHHHHHHHHHH!

All of that thought, tormenting...GUILT and it would have all worked out.  I checked the time of that message.  It came in literally minutes after I had turned my phone off.  If I had gotten that message in a timely manner I could have still changed things and made it to the meet.  Because I didn't know it just wasn't going to work.  However, here I sit now (looking at my daughter, noticing she is wearing a tank top, yet has ear muffs on her ears....NOTHING to do with this post, just funny to mention) and am so glad that it worked out that I didn't go.

I don't know why I struggle with the coulda, woulda, shoulda.  I don't know why I struggle with guilt over such situations.  I have no idea why I'm even telling you all this.  That title probably doesn't make much sense.  Although I have on more than one occasion said "GO FIGURE!" today.  I'm tempted to delete most of this.  I figure though it's good practice for my writing skills.  Something that I need to constantly brush up on.  I used to be an avid writer, have boxes full of my pieces.  I even aspired to be a journalist just like my Aunt Elaine.  But that subject will lead me off on another rabbit trail.  So I'll bid you a good evening.  Don't get blown away (it's awfully windy out there).  And watch out for those STUPID ACORNS!!!!

Wednesday, September 28, 2011


I've been on a cleaning binge today.  That basement MUST be tackled and tamed!!  I am trying to blog more, a little bit each day.  Doesn't have to be big & long or earth shattering.  So my inspiration just hit me as I was sitting down to do a QUICK check of fb.  I have to come up for air now & then, ya know.

I found this posted.  It made me laugh.  It's good to laugh & have a sense of humor.  My sunday school class was just talking about this last week.  How Jesus wants us to laugh & enjoy life.  So laugh and enjoy....

I need to get back to work.  After a ick night of sleep I slept in & skipped my morning run.  While the sleep felt good I'm now wishing I had the run done already.  I will kick myself even more if I ignore my urge to run at some point today.  The sun is shining, it's not warm, but it's not cool either.  Good, perfect, ideal weather.  Since it's day time I can even put in my earphones and not worry what is going to jump out at every dark shadow.

Tuesday, September 27, 2011


Siiiigh.  It is time.  I need to make an announcement.

I mean, it has been almost 2 months and really, I just need to face the facts & let you all know.  Sooner or later you are all going to notice anyway.  Somethings you can only hide for so long.  So instead of getting those off comments, weird, wondering looks or subtle hints...I can just spare you and tell you now.

It is official....I am growing my hair out.  Shocking!  I know!!

Now, if you have only known me for the last year or so, you have only known me to have short hair.  So let me show you this long hair that I speak of. 

Here I was the day I cut it short.  That is me on the left, in case you can't tell the difference between mother & daughter.
 Here is another snapshot of it long:

Although I have completely enjoyed a short hair cut...I really, really miss my long hair.  So it's time to grow it out.  Lucky for me, my hair grows fairly fast.  I'd guess about an inch a month.  While I still have a ways to go to get it "that" long again, it should go quickly.  I haven't had a haircut in almost 2 months and think I'm already rather shaggy looking.

So for fun and lasting memories I took a snapshot or two (or several, cause I was really having fun) of myself to commemorate this moving forward & letting go of the short do.  I may someday return to this look, but for now, while I can, I will love & embrace my long hair.

Note: when trying to purposely take a picture of one self, it never fails that none of them turn out like you want them to.  Here are two, to show off my hair as of today:

Warning:  I will likely on more than one occasion go crazy during this process of trying to grow it out.  It will be a complete love-hate relationship.  So if you see me looking like this, then you know why.
 I may at some point begin to resemble Cousin It.  I will need to go in from time to time to get a trim.  If you look quickly at this picture it looks as if my head is super transposed and turned around backward, like you are looking at the back of my head, yet my shoulders are facing forward.  I know, I'm so talented, you are jealous.

Extra note: sitting & taking pictures of self on a dreary afternoon is really fun.  Nobody is home to see me on the floor laughing at myself.  Sometimes, that is what we need....a little dose of laughing at one self.  Go ahead, try it.  Take some funny pictures of yourself & post them.  Have a  great day!!

Friday, September 23, 2011

Good Luck?

This weekend is the Quad City marathon.  I really wanted to run this race.  I really hoped that I would gain such momentum after Howl at the Moon that I would keep on going.  After running 38 miles in blasted heat, running 26.2 in cool fall weather sounds like a stroll in the park.

Two things kept me from doing this race.  My lack of momentum from previous race.  Yes, I am still running.  Plenty of that going on.  But enough of it?  I have no doubt I can just go run that distance.  But how well?  I don't want a bunch of races under my belt of simply just being able to run the miles.  I want to have a goal, reach a specific time, finish with confidence that I gave it my best.  Not that I just did the race.  I'm not ok with just enough.  I lived plenty of my years on this earth doing just that.  Sure, one can argue that it didn't do me a lot of harm to live under such a creed.  But I know (maybe not so much then, but now) that I have so much more to give.  I am capable of so much.  Just as I have so much to give as a mom, wife, homemaker, child of God, etc.  I have so much more to give as a runner.  However, that great big push of aspiration & go get 'em keeps getting tangled up in the reality of life with 6 kids.

My second reason.  Life is REEEAAAALLLLLYYYYYY busy crazy right now.  Believe it or not, we limit what our kids can do.  We tell them no to plenty of activities and things they want to do.  And we are still busy crazy.  We can not get around the fact that there are 8 of us & our schedules to balance out.  Fall is a particular heavy time for us.  I really didn't think that adding a big race right now was going to help with that craziness.  On Sunday morning the only thing I'm going to miss is church.  For me that is a huge part of my life.  I neither play that up or put it down.  Granted it is important, but really, I know very well that going into a building on Sunday morning is not what church is all about.  With me, personally, I will worship my Lord just as well, maybe even better, trotting down the street with thousands of other surrounding me while doing a race.  Assuming I skip said church service there is still the mentality of a big race that preoccupies my mind, the preparation, the recovery, etc.  Do I really need this to, again, simply do a race for the sake of saying I did a race?  I think you know the answer as well as I do.  Even though it eats at me to some degree I know what I need to do....skip the race.

All is not lost though.  I have a few other big races on my radar that can help quench my thirst for a big fall race.  I promise to keep you posted on those possibilities.

I have plenty of friends who ARE running the QC half & full marathon.  (I should add that I considered running "just the half", but same principles applied).  I saw one of those friends & wished him good luck.  I did it without thinking.  I am so excited for this friend.  I have been following his blog and being the understanding running friend that I am, I am SO EXCITED and PUMPED for him.  What struck me later though is why did I wish him good luck.  I chuckle because I say that so automatically and yet I know that I really don't believe in "good luck".  He has worked long & hard & trained for this marathon.  God has created in him this love & passion for running & for being just who he is while out there pounding out those miles.  That sounds nothing like luck to me.  I doubt any of this stuck his mind when he heard my well wishes.  Even if he did, he knew what I meant.  It's just another cliche statement that we often rattle off without thinking.  Besides some people do believe in luck and have a different perspective of the whole situation.  That's fine.  They can blog about it on their blog.  This is mine, I just felt like typing out my thoughts & sentiments on the subject.

So to all of my friends running the QC Marathon on Sunday I hope you have fun and enjoy the day.  Embrace whatever reason has you out there.  And well.....good luck ; )

Thursday, September 22, 2011


I have been busy with my priorities as I previously spoke about. For example, today I cleaned the carpets in the living room & deep cleaned both main level bathrooms. I was going to have lunch with a friend, but nixed that so I could have a good day of cleaning. I was also relieved when my mentor called & cancelled our regular thursday meeting. Relieved that I would have more time to clean. I did miss her company & our weekly visit.

I have other responsibilities that I need to also prioritize. That would have to do with the YMCA. My job there has taken a turn for the more. For those that don't know, let me fill you in.

Although I often say I am a stay at home mom, that is only partially true. Technically I am employed outside of our home. I have had this job for over 15 years. FIFTEEN!!!! Who woulda thunk it all those years ago?!?!?!? I started out as a fitness instructor. Really, I had no clue what I was doing. Since I had a pulse they hired me. In a nutshell, I worked my way to the top and at one point was director/coordinator of the fitness department. I still always have and always will instruct classes. Can't get me to actually stop teaching. Members likely will never let me stop either. I have quite the fan following there.

When we decided to be open to God's will for child 5 & 6, I knew I had to step down from that top position. My heart is always at home first and with the plan for more babies I knew I could not balance both. However at the same time, there was a need for training (one I created & insisted upon myself in my director position) and an opportunity to become said trainer. So even though the Y knew I was stepping down in one regards I was stepping up into another. One that didn't require nearly as much consistent hours and one that I largely controlled.

I received said trainer status and for the next few years trained many people in Health & Fitness courses offered by the YMCA. Slowly, but surely though my drive to get trainings done and the full on demand of 6 kids took it's toll. Although I still had my trainer status I had not done any trainings for 2 years.

Last year there was a big push in re-vamping the training system. I took many classes & webinars to keep my trainer status up to date. In hindsight I'm not sure why at the time, I had no desire to train. Now, I'm so glad I did. It saved me a lot of work, time & effort.

A few months ago I was approached & asked to consider becoming a faculty trainer. Another level of training that gave me the power to not only grant certification in said courses, but also train & approve other trainers in the same area. I was a little hesitant, but agreed to this process. So I have endured over the last week a very tough & rigorous training. (Ok, not really. I mean, it was a lot of training, but tough? & rigorous? Not really. I was just putting that to make me sound like a bada**). I've already done plenty of training over the last 6 years so it all came quite easily & naturally. I'd also like to think, this is just another niche I have. I can train. I can lead. I am faculty.

Thursday, September 1, 2011


I have put myself on rest for a short period.  A week or so.  No need to get drastic....yet.  That's the point though, to keep from putting into place drastic rest measures.

Remember that widdle bitty race I did?  The one where I ran 38 miles?  Yeah, one would think that I would need or should take some drastic rest after that.  And I did.  I mean 4 days is a LONG time.  Ok, not really.  But I didn't want to come to a dead stop.  I certainly was sore, but aside from that I actually felt really great after Howl at the Moon.  I have my eye set on a fall marathon.  Now is not the time to stop.  I was hoping to use my big surge of miles to keep my miles & long runs up.  I have not registered for this marathon.  Considering there is only a $5 penalty for registering right before the race, I'm willing to hold off & know that I am for sure going to race.  That whole topic of paying/registering for a race could easily be a whole different post.  So I'll stop there.

In my opinion, when you are sore, the best thing you can do is move.  I know it's earth shattering pain to simply stand up or walk up & down stairs.  Keeping still doesn't help though.  You gotta move.  Get that lactic acid build up in your muscles to break up & get it out of your system.  I am the mom, that when my babies got their shots, I gave them a big dose of Tylenol then sat there & massaged the heck out of their painfully knotted muscles.  Sure they screamed & cried, but I could see a big difference in their recovery & soreness from when I did vs. didn't do this.  Break it up!  While I'd certainly opt for a huge deep tissue massage myself, my checkbook does not so I have to do it on my own.  I massage the heck out of my muscles and move, move, move.  Yes, I scream bloody murder, but it does miracles in your recovery time.

All this helped & made it very possible for me to head out on a 5 mile run 4 days after that race.  I felt much better than expected.  I ran a few more times, but then began to feel a twinge in my knee.  I tried to shake it off.  After a run with my good friend Angela, I began to see that yes, I might have an overuse injury knocking at my back door.  Being injured and not run at all is like a death sentence to me.  Fall marathon or not, I still want to run.  Angela helped me see that I needed to take a break.  She might have also threatened me with a big swift kick in the rear if she caught me out running.  That is what a good running friend does.  I love her for it.

My knee was actually beginning to bother me when I wasn't running.  So I took this week off.  I have only lifted weights.  A whole other topic of keeping myself injury free.  And I have done some casual biking with the kids to and from school and about town.  Regular doses of ibuprofen and icing it every night.  I think it's helping a lot.  My true test will be when I go out for a run on Monday or Tuesday.  In theory I want to go out on Monday, but it's a holiday and I will easily hit the snooze button & sleep in because I will more than likely stay up really late on Sunday.  So if Monday fails I will definitely hit the road for a few miles on Tuesday.  Sort of like dipping my toe in the water to see how it feels.  Hopefully I will feel so great I will be able to cannon ball right into the pool of running.  But we'll see, I'm trying to be smart with my body & my training.

Thought I would share this picture of my cutie patootie baby girl who likes to be a runner girl, just like mommy.