Thursday, May 31, 2012

FIVE things Thursday

1. It feels like a cool October morning.  Crazy!  Despite the coolness & rain I still got up and ran 3 miles this morning with my running partner Angela.  If it hadn't been for her I probably would have hit snooze and skipped the run.  Accountability is good on some days!

2.  My baby girl Carmen is sick.  Poor thing has hand, foot, mouth and has big blisters in her mouth & throat.  It's fair to say she is miserable and lays around all day sleeping.  Dr. office told me they have treated about 2 dozen cases in the last week or so.  It's going around.

3.  Last night I found lice nits on another child of mine.  I can't believe that I'm admitting this publicly. I hate that feeling of being dirty, poor or whatever comes to mind when you think of lice.  How stereotypical.  I know it's so wrong.  Plenty of people get lice.  Even clean, rich people.  It happens.  It sucks.  I'm treating the bed linens and child infected, plus keeping tabs on the other 5 heads that can also get infected.  I'm no stranger to lice, I've so been there done that before with one kid or another.  I'm fairly sure I caught it early & we don't have a big infestation.  I've been through that before too, it nearly breaks me.  Trying to keep positive though and not itch my head.  Does yours itch now?  You're welcome!

4.  This weekend is the Galesburg Half Marathon Express.  There is still time to register online or on the day of the event (cash & check only the day of, no credit cards).  Don't miss out on this great event.  There is a half marathon5k & 1 mile run.  Something for everyone.  I can not race myself & had really been looking forward to being a volunteer, but there was some snafoo and miscommunication and I'm not helping out after all.  I'm really bummed about it.  I was wanting to really be a part of the race without actually doing the race.  Stuff happens though.  I'll still be milling around before and after so holler if you see me.  I'm still glad to be able to promote this race.  A special shout out to HOULA who was the winner of my first ever giveaway.  It is also her first half marathon so I'm extra excited that I was able to give her a free race entry to enjoy & experience this race.  Have a great race!

5.  Today is the last day to enter my current giveaway for a free Bondi Band.  Don't miss out on this chance to win a great product!  If you haven't entered yet...HURRY, go sign up now.

Wednesday, May 30, 2012

Vloggin' Wednesday - Summer Challenge

I got a little carried away with my vlog this a.m.  Turns out it's like 27 minutes long.  Oops!  Which, unless you are a good friend or die hard fan of mine, I know you are not going to watch that.  That's fine!  So I went back and made a 2nd, more to the point video that is only 5 minutes long.

So I'm posting that video for now.  According to youtube the other 27 minute video will be done processing and ready to post in 259 minutes.  So I will post the short one for now then come back & post the other video later.

Short & sweet & to the point : )

And....the long version. Go grab a snack or lunch, coffee, whatever....make sure you go to the bathroom...I'm kidding, kind's not THAT long. But get comfy and enjoy : )

Tuesday, May 29, 2012

Tuesday's Tunes

Well it' has been a VERY interesting day so far.

Getting back to my normal running schedule means getting up at 4 a.m. so I can be out the door & running by 5 a.m.  I will admit the last month of not doing this was quite enjoyable.  I can very easily get used to "sleeping in" until 5:30.  That hour or so can make all the difference in the world.  I won't lie, it was tough to get up.  I even hit snooze once.  I tried to sit there convincing myself that I WOULD go running later.  It took a few minutes, but I did get myself moving & out the door.  I set out to run 3.5 miles.  Flat.  Here in town.  Other than a slower pace my run went fine.  Even now hours later my foot is not bothering me at all.  That just leaves me confused.  Why did I have such pain yesterday, but not today?  Well, I'm sure taking some drugs had something to do with it.  Ah, yes, my sweet drugs.  I took a dose of ibuprofen before I went to bed and a dose as soon as I got up/before I ran.  No doubt that helped, but any covering any pain effect should have worn off my now.  If I had honestly tweeked/bothered my foot eventually the drugs would wear off and I would feel it.  I still feel fine over 5 hours later.

Don't get me wrong.  I'm not complaining.  I will take the run and with it.  Haha, yeah stupid pun.  Afterward I taught my pilates class and then lifted weights.  At one point I felt my early rising hit me.  I wanted to just go home and crawl back into bed.  I had a hard time resisting.  Enough, is enough, right.  I just took it easy for the last month and for almost 2 weeks did almost nothing.  ENOUGH!  I pushed through and finished my workout.  I was suppose to swim, but a series of little things kept me from that.  At first I couldn't find my suit, then my shampoo was missing.  Got those things recovered then my goggles were not in my bag.  I literally threw up my hands and said: fine, I WON'T swim!  Sometimes I feel like I'm getting a sign, a it whatever you want.  I am hoping to get back to the Y to swim, but won't stress over it.

I go to leave the Y and of all things, I can't get my van to start.  Ok, didn't see that coming.  I wasn't too surprised either.  On Sunday at the drive in something funky happened with the ignition, the place where you put in the key to turn it on, whatever that is called.  For awhile we thought we would be stuck at the drive in all night.  With the help of a friend and a screwdriver Jim got it fixed.  This morning I could get the key to go in, but it will not turn.  Yes, it is in park.  Yes, I had turned the steering wheel so it wasn't locked in place.  Yes, I tried putting my foot on the break.  Not the exact problem Jim had the other night, but very similar.  So I had to walk home from the Y.  I'm sure I could have called someone to drive me home.  Really though I have 2 strong, healthy legs & the weather outside is wonderful!  I only live 2 miles from the Y.  Just walk already.

Well, this has turned into a nice ramble of my morning so far.  It hasn't gone exactly like I expected.  My iPod was a little funky so my tunes that I listened to on my run this a.m. got messed up and other than my memory I don't know what songs I listened to.  I remember a few of them & will list them below along with some music I listened to while I walked home.

Don't forget you have TWO more days to enter my Bondi Band giveaway.  I'm excited about everyone who entered.  I wish I could give everybody a Bondi Band.  Since I can't (or won't), at least not at this point, make sure you enter the giveaway.  I should look into getting bands that say She Runs Everywhere.  That would be fun.  That would be also spending money on Bondi Bands so I guess I shouldn't since I promised no more....for this year.  Come on 2013, hurry and get here : )

Let My Words Be Few - Phillips, Craig and Dean
The Incredible Hulk - TV Tunes (Best tv show ever!)
Tell Him - Celine Dion & Barbra Streisand
That'll Be the Day - Buddy Holly
Somewhere Out There - Linda Ronstadt & James Ingram
Wake Up - Hillary Duff
We Fall Down - Passion Worship Band
Sing - Carpenters
Make Me Lose Control - Eric Carmen

Monday, May 28, 2012

Monday's Motivation: I'm baaaack!

Today was my first day back to running.  To catch anyone up to date that needs it, I had taken a month off since my marathon to help heal my issues with plantar fasciiatis.  It helped to a large degree, but to say the problem is gone or fixed is not accurate.  I'm not willing to just never run again so I'm back at it to see what happens.  I've been wearing this sock at night and it's helping.  I'm also massaging and icing and rolling the heck out of my problem foot.  It all helps, but does not alleviate the issue completely.  I will admit, I'm a huge flip flop fan.  However today at the store I bought a new, better pair of flip flops.  Ones with support on the side.  I'm not convinced my choice of shoes is a big factor to the problem.   A factor, yes.  This problem was rearing it's ugly head and throwing fits well before I was in flip flop season so I'm not giving up on flip flops so easily.

Talking about it just frustrates me.  I want a clear cut problem that is specifically diagnosed and given "easy" steps in fixing.  Easy as in do A, B & C to fix the problem.  I don't care if the fixing includes 26 steps if that is what it takes then I will do it.  So far though I don't know why my left foot is giving me such pain and different things on different days seem to help (or not) the problem.

Anyway, I'm suppose to ease my way back into my running.  Ease or easy is not really in my vocabulary, not in this sense.  I tend to go all out & in big ways, yet it just seems normal to me.  Plus I have been itching to get back to running.  Other than a few jaunts down the soccer field I had done zippo running.  I had held on long enough & now was ready to let go and enjoy the ride.  I went back into my normal summer running plan which includes a 6 mile (or longer if I want) course about 5 miles outside of town in the country.  It's far enough removed that it feels like it's out in the boonies and is so serene, peaceful and awesome to run at.  It also includes some killer hills.  I love it!

My foot felt fine during the run.  No major pain, just a slight ache.  We (my running partner Angela joined me today) took it easy and took plenty of walk breaks.  I'm typically a non walker, but I was working to give myself lots of generous slack.  Later once I was at home my foot was hoppin' mad.  Ouch!  Lots of ice and massaging and rolling it out.  I even laid down with the sock on.  Of course I could not find ANY ibuprofen in the house.  I was walking from cabinet to cabinet yelling "where are my drugs?!?!?!"  Later at Wal Mart my youngest said nice & out loud...."mommy, did you get your drugs?  don't forget your drugs mommy".  Ahhhh, gotta love them!

Last week, school ended and I had a mountain of papers & notebooks to go through that my kids brought home.  I'm not big into saving every paper or project.  It has to be really cute and/or awesome for me to save.  I literally sit next to the trash can and shift through it all and throw 99.9% of it away.  Even then, with 6 kids this stuff adds up.  I came across something my 11 year old son filled out.  It warmed my heart so much, I'd say it's a keeper.  I blocked out most of the other info since it gave details about my son.  This is what he wrote about me and it just warmed my heart and helped fuel my motivation to get back out there.
Now that I have it loaded, I don't know how well you can see it.  Just in case, I will tell you.  It said: My Mother's name is:  Carmen.  My mother's occupations is: running.

Friday, May 25, 2012

Friday's Findings: One Man's Trash

Sorry,  I know I'm stating the over obvious, but I haven't been running for 4 weeks now.  So, nothing to report in my findings department.  I have been out on my bike more this last week, just doing things around town and riding my bike instead of taking the car.  I have kept my eye out on those rides to see if I see anything.  I did almost pick up a little plastic table I saw fully intact right down my street.  I passed it, got a chuckle out of the thought of turning around, picking it up & carrying back home on my bike.  It seemed fair game, it was in the street.  After some thought though I left it.  I had been an awfully windy day, maybe it blew out of that person's yard.  Ok and honestly I was worried that the second I tried to pick it up someone would see me & yell "hey that's mine".  So I left it.

I'm a sucker for yard sales. I love them!  Sometimes I scout out the classified, plot my course and go to town.  Other times I see a sign and randomly stop.  Sometimes I don't even have any cash on me, but I will stop anyway.  You never know what deal or treasure you will find!

Last week I came upon a yard sale right down my street.  I buy so much stuff from my neighbors it's not even funny.  At first glance I didn't think there was going to be much for me to buy, but I like to be polite and browse and pretend to be semi interested in something.  I've had yard sales myself and I hate when people walk up, scoff at what you have and turn in haste.  So looked through the stuff anyway.  The first thing that caught my eye was this:

Now, before you, I don't have a habit of bowling.  I enjoy the game, but it's not a regular thing I participate in.  I  never have nor do I plan to belong to any leagues or even visit the bowling alley more than a few times a year.   But...but...but....look at that set.  Bowling ball, with patten leather shoes AND a case to hold it all.  Want to know how much?  $2!!!!  Who can't pass up that deal?!?!?!?  Honestly it was the shoes that the convinced me to buy it.  Real, old fashion leather bowling shoes!  You never know when this will come in handy.  I can't think of anything, but I'll keep you posted!

Next I came across a box of old cameras and found this:

You can't even buy these things any more.  Even better it was only $1!!!!  Down in my basement (which, by the way Suzie is NOT done being cleaned & organized : / ) I have a chunk of costumes and things of this sort.  When Halloween or any dress up occasion come up I have lots in my basement to choose from.  I have visions of me being dressed up as a tacky tourist, camera hanging around the neck, etc.  Or when the drama department needs such a prop I can be of very happy assistance in this area.  I know I'll never use it as a camera, that thought never crossed my mind.  It's just something neat to have.  My kids even oooohed and awwwwwed over it like an ancient artifact when I showed it to them.

That lead me to my last find, which is very similar to the previous one:

This camera was also priced for $1 AND it came with a leather case.  Wow!  I know realize that it's missing a plate across the front to show the brand, but it's still a neat looking camera.  Now, I think it's fair to say I'm neither young or old.  I certainly remember Polaroid cameras, but I don't remember cameras that looked like this.  Which to me makes it at least feel older.  Based on the booklet that it came with I think this camera is about as old as I am, maybe a few years younger.  Again, no use for it as a camera, but for that price I could not pass it up.

Some of you may be concerned about this "disease" I have of buying cheaply priced stuff that people want to desperately get rid of.  I can't help it, or well, I can but it's so fun.  It's even better when I come across stuff that is retro/antique/old fashion....whatever you want to call it.  I was trying to be creative & call it a combination of those things. Like old retrantiqufash.  Or we could just call it JUNK and me CRAZY!  Well, whatever.  These treasures are mine!

Thursday, May 24, 2012

Three Things Thursday

1.   My master summer plan is falling perfectly into place. As I blog, I am sitting out on my front porch enjoying a cup of coffee. Children are still sound asleep inside. I have taught my class and enjoyed breakfast out with my running girlfriend. Besides chatting the time away & catching up with each other we made plans to run next week, my debut run after taking a month off. is good : )

2.   I mentioned in my Bondi Band giveaway post the other day that I'm horrible at getting things in the mail even though I am married to a Postmaster who goes to the post office almost every day.   I later realized that is not good for business, so to speak, when I am promoting giving something away.  I got my rear in gear and got the Bondi Bands all packaged up & ready to mail.  All I have to do is wait for the winners information to slap on the mailing label and it will be all set to go.  I also went to the post office myself and mailed the other Bondi Bands to 2 of my favorite people.  They don't necessarily know who they are, but they will in a few days when my package arrives in their mail box.  I love surprising people with unexpected gifts in the mail.  With all this talk of Bondi Band....have you entered my Bondi Band giveaway?  Don't miss out on getting the chance to win this fabulous prize!

3.  Every summer I make more of an attempt to ride my bike around town.  My more laid back schedule helps allow for this and I use it as a way to save on gas and keep me even more active & fit.  I also like to set that example for my children to hop on their bikes and get things done instead of being dependent on me for everything.  Yesterday I set out to get a few things done.  I had to stop by the bank, go to the post office and visit my favorite (ok only, but still favorite) local running store  Go Outside and Play.  A few weeks ago I told you about a great daily deal where you could get a $50 gift card for only $25.  I purchased one myself and it had been burning a hole in my pocket.  I went in with the intention of buying a sock to help with my plantar fasciitis.  Upon getting it I was told that I had to spend the rest of my $50 or else forfeit the change.  Well, in that case let me shop around...there is always MORE that I'm wanting to buy.  I joked with Tracy that I should "buy" another Bondi Band.  I DID say the other day that I would not spend any more money on them (at least for THIS year, did ya catch that in the fine print) because owning 21 is enough (for now).  Tracy, bless her ever loving heart, let me in on a special secret.  She went into the back and pulled out a Bondi Band product that had yet to even be put on the shelf and let me purchase it!  I was so ecstatic I had to keep from screaming from the roof top!  I was able to add this precious gem to my stack of bands:

If you are a Galesburgian, I know you are INSANELY jealous right now.  Don't worry, they will be on the shelf soon enough.  Just in time to debut our upcoming Galesburg Half Marathon Express.  For now, I get to be the lone special person to own this doubly amazing product.  Bondi Band & Go Outside & Play....what can be better than that?!?!?!?

Yeah, I am pretty excited about my new band!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Tuesday's Tunes: Sounds of Silence & a GIVEAWAY!

Since I'm not running today I don't have any tunes to report.  This WILL be the last week of my break so I will be back to posting my tunes next week.  Since today is the last day of school this will be the last day that, in theory, I get to post in silence for a few months.  Actually, in theory, if I post like I want to this summer  I will still enjoy the silence.  I tend to re-arrange the kids sleep schedule so they go to bed late and thus sleep in later.  A typical summer morning includes me getting up early (5-6 a.m.), getting my workout done and coming home while the kids are STILL sleeping.  I can enjoy my breakfast, coffee, computer time, etc all in silence.  No more walking in the door and turning back around to take oldest to school, coming home to pick up 2 more and taking them to school, then getting a 20 minute break before getting the last 2 to school.  Our typical school routine leaves me coming and going with 5 minute lapses here and there and making it impossible to get any blogging or productive computer time in until almost 9 a.m. and honestly by then I should be gearing up to clean the house, run errands and start my day.  So, it's fair to say, I am REALLY looking forward to our summer schedule.

To kick off summer I have a product review & giveaway for Bondi Band.

In 2010, I had been searching for something to help with my heavy sweating and came across their website.  The product looked worth trying and the long list of cute sayings and amazing colors on their headbands helped seal the deal.  Once I had my first few I was hooked and never tried any other product for a headband use.  These bands are AMAZING!  Bondi Band is my first & only choice.  In fact, I think I've become a little addicted.  I have 21 bands and constantly want more.  I promise though (this really only applies to my husband) that I won't purchase any more for the rest of this year. in pay for.  If anyone wants to send me one...hey, I'm all for gifts.  And birthday IS coming up in July.  I'm just saying.....

Bondi Band has many great qualities about them.  First, they are so cute with lots of vibrant colors (or just black for those who want to keep it more simple) and the funniest, craziest, uh-huh that's right sayings that runners, cyclist, fitness enthusiast love to embrace.  You can also custom make your Bondi Band with any saying or logo.  We used Bondi Band a few years ago for a Zumbathon that the Y hosted.  They were very quick, efficient and gave us a great product that our Zumbathon participants loved!

Bondi Bands are top notch with holding sweat.  When I workout I am one heck of a sweater.  I'm always dripping wet from head to toe.  It doesn't matter if I'm inside on the treadmill with AC blasting and a fan blowing on me or if I'm outside in -0 to 100 degree temps.  When I workout and/or run I sweat like a pig.  I make Miss Piggy jealous!  Bondi bands always keep that sweat up & out of my eyes.  I love taking off my band and watching it sag several inches down because it is so loaded and full of my sweat.  It's unbelievable!

Bondi Band is perfect for use any time of the year.  They are nice & wide to help cover your head during colder temperatures.  They also fold nicely with your saying still showing for those warmer temps where you need something for your sweat, but don't need the coverage all over your head.  Bondi Band also carries other products such neck gators and pony tail hats.  I have also used those products, but am not providing a review on them at this time.

You can see from my pictures that I have many to choose from.  Only 1 is missing from my stash here.  Was too lazy to go pick it out of the dirty laundry.  Yet, I still hop over to Bondi Band from time to time and drool over more bands.  Help keep me accountable more!

Two of my favorite people are going to be lucky receivers of these Bondi Bands.  I just need to get myself to the post office to get them mailed.  Anybody know how to get to the post office?  Or know anyone who WORKS at the post office?  Yeah, I know, it should be that simple.... (for those that don't know my husband is a Postmaster and goes in every day, yet for the life of me it takes forever to get something mailed)

The peeps at Bondi Band were very generous to give me the following bands for giveaway.  Actually, they gave me one to use myself for product review and another to giveaway.  Since I already have my own stack and am a HUGE fan (not to mention totally awesome and loves to give things away)  I am giving both of them away for two totally random people to win.

If you have never tried Bondi Band don't miss out on this opportunity to win one for FREE!  I picked colors and sayings so that it doesn't matter if you are a girl or guy you will look awesome in these bands.  If you already own and use Bondi Band, well here is a chance to add to your collection.  Either way ENTER TO WIN!

I am giving you lots of time and plenty of chances to enter the giveaway.  The giveaway will run until May 31, 2012.  I will start off the fabulous month of June with announcing the winners.

a Rafflecopter giveaway Bondi Band provided this product for review and giveaway. My thoughts and opinions on the product were strictly my own and I was not paid for anything I said.

Monday, May 21, 2012

Monday's Motivation: One More Week

I didn't think I was going to get a chance to blog today. I am chaperoning a field trip to Springfield with my sons 5th grade class. It's the big end of the year trip complete with a charter bus. Sweet! I brought a book along to sit back & enjoy for more than a few minutes. Since I love history I love this trip because it is filled with stuff about President Lincoln & the Civil War. We left well before school started and will get home after everyone is gone too. I have a small window of time to fix supper (which we are having a few extra girls over tonight) and then we are off to Mandy's 8th grade recognition. So it's a busy on the go day that's not being spent at home.

Once I got on the bus though I realized it has wifi. Wow, have times changed. So because I love you all so much I am blogging from my iPod. Go ahead now....bask in my love.

It has been 3 weeks since I last ran and I have one more week to go before I resume. I can really begin to tell. Not necessarily in a physical way. I have been cross training and thanks to my better eating habits I'm not gaining weight. If anything I've continue to loose and/or maintain.   I can tell in other ways. My usual even level of hormones & emotions are not so even & level. Sure I was due for some fluctuation, but this is really getting ridiculous. I don't have that usual run to help work it all out.  I also seem to have "other" hormones that are raging and I seem like a 18 year old newlywed again.  (abslutley no complaints from my husband in that change!I've never realized how much my running regulates all my hormones before. It's making me pretty squirrelly in so many ways!

On the plus side my foot is feeling so much better! That was the whole point of the break. Mission accomplished.  Now the trick is to resume in the right fashion and to keep the foot healthy. Also on the plus side I think I will be ready to be back.   I wasn't feeling burnt out, but better to get this rest done now before it does set in. I should be good to go for this summer! I'm SO excited!!!!

I found this nice picture at a gift shop and I was going to post it, but can't figure out how to load the picture from my iPod.   So I'll just tell you the quote. Most folks are about as happy as they make up their mind to be. What a great reminder for anything in life. We may not like what is going on in our lives.  For me that would include not being able to run right now, but I've made up to be happy about it none the less. Now if I can just get my emotions and hormones to go along with this that would be even better.

Time for me to head into the Lincoln Presidental Museum.   Have a great day everyone and remember....BE HAPPY!

Friday, May 11, 2012

Friday's Funny & One Smart Cookie

So I get dressed this morning.  I had already been up for a few hours, showered, etc.  I go about my business.  Take kids to school.  Run errands all over town.  Then it took just a look.  Just a hair of a second to notice.  I had my shirt on inside out.  Nice!  I suddenly feel like EVERYONE is staring, but I have to keep it cool and act like "yeah....I'm cool, I know it".  In my defense it was an all black shirt and a new one that I had never worn.  Sometimes, just have to laugh.  I'm sure there are worse things I can do.  Actually yesterday I went to get groceries.  It wasn't until I walked out of the store that I looked down and had remembered that I had marshmallow goo smeared on my shirt from making rice crispy treats earlier.  Right smack across my chest.  Another nice look to tout in public.  Again, not the worse.  I just shrug my shoulders and laugh. 

A special thanks to a friend who posted this on my fb wall for me:

 Tell me about something you have done lately that you just have to laugh about?

I was given a cookie to sample the other day.  I'm not a huge cookie person, but since I was in fact hungry I was not going to deny myself said cookie.  It was wonderful!!!!!  If you like peanut butter cookies and like natural, the fewer the ingredients the better food this jot down this recipe.  My friend called it Smart Cookies:

1 C. peanut butter
3/4 C. brown sugar
1 egg
1/4 tsp baking soda

Mix all together.  Drop onto ungreased cookie sheet.  Bake 8-10 minutes @ 350 degrees.

Wow!  That's it!  It was so soft and yummy I could have eaten her whole stack.  4 ingredients.  Get smart people.  Eat food!

Try the recipe, let me know what you think about them.  Have a great weekend everyone!!!!

Thursday, May 10, 2012

TTT: Joy....Joy....Joy.....

A day ago I had no idea what I was going to blog about.  Would I even have 3 things to share with you?  When in doubt....things WILL come to you, sometimes in least expected ways.

*Joy. I have been missing my friend Joy something fierce these last few days.  It always tend to ebb & flow.  I always miss her, sometimes I just don't think about it or it doesn't seem to bother me as much.  Months ago when Joy died I had blogged about it once.  I had always intended to blog about it some more, but it just never came.  I like to keep it real on my blog and not fake or stage certain topics just because I said I would.  Unknowingly though Joy, or my thoughts/memory of her IS what brought on this topic today.  A few reasons why:

I just ordered and received a new batch of Bondi Bands this week.  Because apparently having over a dozen is NOT enough.  (Stayed tuned though I have a BB giveaway next week!!!!)   I had ordered me a band that say JOY on it.  I was going to order one that says CANCER SUCKS! in her memory, but since I found one with her name on it, I would rather dwell on her &  her wonderful life and not the awful illness that ripped her from our arms in less than 6 months time.

In choir last night we sang/rehearsed 2 songs that focused on the word Joy.  At first I sang automatically then the words kept pounding into my soul.  When I paused to reflect on the word, I got goosebumps and about had a break down.  I held it together though.  I don't know if many of my fellow choir members know about this and I didn't want to explain to them why I was suddenly crying.

Early this morning I awoke from an intense dream.  It's one thing to wake up from a dream and another when you are engulfed in the feelings from the dream.  Of course, Joy was the center of my dream.  I was chatting with her.  At first it was a normal natural thing to do.  You see a good friend, you chat with her.  Mid conversation though I realized....wait a minute....Joy is dead, how can I possibly be talking to her, but I continued on anyway.  Yeah, insert Twlight Zone music.  I began to think I was going crazy so I turned to another lady who said to me...."my isn't she chatty".  Ah-ha!  So maybe Joy wasn't dead?!?!?  If someone else saw & heard her & not just me then I'm certainly not crazy.  Pretty soon though my husband comes up to me and tells me how I need to stop talking as if someone was there.  Apparently he could not see or hear Joy, but could see me sitting there chatting with no one.  I know....I know....none of it makes sense.  But it was so real in my dream and I tried to explain to him how she was RIGHT THERE!  So real, so close.  Siiigh, it makes me want to hug her right now!!!!

*Joy  I'm a walking emotional time bomb.  I'm a pretty emotional person.  I cry at anything, sad or happy.  Thanks to some medication that I have been on for the last 5 years or so I have been pretty leveled off when it comes to emotional outburst.  It just keeps me evenly flowing from day to day.  I probably still tear up at least once a day, but no big tears and it's much easier to keep in check.  However, the downside is that this emotion all tends to build up.  Sooner or later I have a huge emotional break down.  HUGE!  It's usually in private and usually when I least expect it.  I feel it building.  These last few days & my constant thoughts of Joy are not helping.  (I seriously almost lost it a few minutes ago).  I think my lack of running is also playing a big part.  I may not cry, but I can have a deep intense run where I just hammer things out and end feeling like I had cried for a good spell.  I'm not getting that out in anyway shape or form.  I am having some good long biking sessions.  Honestly though I have been using that time to read.  Perhaps I need to sweat it out long & hard on a bike and focus on this emotion building.  I don't want biking to replace my running, but for now it will have to do.  Yep, trying to find Joy in my absence of running.

*Joy  On a good, positive, non emotional note.  I'm very thrilled that I have lost some weight recently.  I'm telling you this at the wrong time, because I haven't posted my vlog about it.  In a big picture, round about way, this is what I had been wanting to vlog about, but had put off.  Then I DID vlog and had technical difficulties and couldn't load it last week.  This week I was on the ball, had it all loaded and ready to slap on a post for y'all yesterday.  However, hubby took the day off and we had so much to get done, blogging was not one of them.  If you want to cheat you can see the video on my youtube channel, but I won't post and talk about it until next Wednesday.  I'm finding such joy in losing weight though more because of the changes I'm making.  Good positive changes that needed to come regardless of weight.  More on that next week!

I encourage you to find the joy in your life.  Joy can be found in anything....the good and the bad, the hard and the easy, the ups and the downs.  Tell me about your joy....I'd love to hear about it!

Tuesday, May 8, 2012

Tuesday's Tune: Arrrrrrr, me matey!

Since I am not running I don't have any tunes to tell you about.  Tuesday has also turned into an easy day.  I teach a yoga/pilates class and do some strengthening exercises.  Otherwise I'm not forcing any structured cardio (no running, of course, no biking, no swimming).  This is partly to just scale back for awhile, sometimes I just need this.  Also, until the kids get out of school my schedule keeps me from taking my time to do what I want.  Once school gets out (2 more weeks) I plan to really hit the pool on Tuesdays & Thursdays.  I'm excited about this for a few reasons.  Swimming is not #1 on preferred list of exercise, but I know and see great benefits from spending a chunk of time in the pool.

The last few years my summer has been structured around another life component: the Prairie Player's musical.  Prairie Players is a community civic theater.  I was first introduced to this when 3 of my kids participated in The Music Man.  The next year the need for kids was sparse as they put on The Sound of Music.  My kids were not a few of the 100 or so that auditioned for a Von Trapp child.  However the need for a stage full of nuns opened the door for me to audition and participate.
That is me on the left.  Don't I make a smashing nun?  If you know me and the fun I love to have where ever I go then you know I hammed it up & had a great time.

Once I had gotten that musical buzz I was hooked on being in the summer productions.  I grew up surrounded my music & am a huge fan of the stage, especially Broadway.  I didn't choose to pursue it too much, it often conflicted with my sports in school.  Then my life with 6 kids didn't exactly afford me much time or money to be in the midst of it on either side as a participant or spectator.  I still loved it and now with my kids getting older I can give my time to the art.  It can be a little demanding on my time, but my husband and kids are great is supporting me during this time.

Last year the musical was All Shook Up and was based on all Elvis Presley songs.  Once again I auditioned and given a general towns person/chours role.  I don't mind not getting any specific or spotlight role.  It is still just a fun and important to be on the stage in a general supporting role.  This musical required me to be on stage in numerous group songs, in addition to, a few smaller group songs that I was picked for.
  Jailhouse Rock, front, right corner
 center statue, I had to alternate between standing perfectly still and coming to life to sing
on left, captured mid song
I had so much fun, singing and dancing my summer away!!

This year the musical to be performed is The Pirates of Penzance.  This will certainly be a much different musical than the last few years.  It's more of an operatic tone.  90% of the script is sung.  During auditions the director showed us that of the 215 page script, only 3 pages are spoken.  We have been told to think of it as a cross between Monty Python and Pirates of the Caribbean.  Prairie Players has been proven to be quite the theater for a smaller town.  We don't have a lot of resources here like the big cities, but man, can we put on a show!

Auditions are always required when casting a show.  I went with the usual mindset of hoping to at least get a chours part.  This was going to be a little tricky since there are only a small handful of female roles, mostly tailored to teen/young adult ladies (which, I am neither, although I am frequently told that I age so gracefully that I often appear as one).  Once there & having what I thought was a great audition I had began to secretly hope to get a part of one of General Stanley's daughters.  I didn't get such role, but was cast as 1 of 3 governesses to the daughters.  These roles were specifically created to allow more female cast members, especially those of us who are....uh....older more mature in age.   I'm thrilled none the less.  Not everyone who auditioned was given a role at all.  Some musicals allow & can afford to give everyone a part so it's a given that if you audition you have a role.  This one does not, so regardless of what I was assigned I am beyond excited to be a part of this production.

What about you?  Do you like to dance & sing?  On stage?  In private?  Used to many years ago?  What activity do you like pursue now that you are older?

Monday, May 7, 2012

Monday's Motivation: Stop Whining!

Yep, I'm pretty much posting this for myself.  I'm sure many of you may also apply this to yourself.  You can apply this in more than one way.  Either you are facing that wall of what you know you need to do and don't want to.  Or, like me, you are facing injury and you just want to lay down like a 2 year old and throw a fit.

Now, I realize that I have been injured more less for a few months now.  I also realize that I have subjected you guys more than once to my breakdowns of whining, crying, complaining and out right pity parties that I have thrown myself.  Only because of my stubbornness, stupidity & determination have I continued to run in spite of my injury.  This injury has me baffled.  Other than getting an xray to rule out a break or fracture I haven't done too much to treat it, besides scale back on my running.  That has helped, but not fixed the problem and it got me through my marathon.

Now that I am past my marathon I'm at a turning point.  Do I continue to run very minimally to keep the injury at bay, but not really deal with said injury? Or do I stop, properly deal with this and come back better & stronger.

Part of me wants to keep running.  You know how much I live and breath running.  It has already been one week without a run and I feel like it's been an eternity.  I have been cross training.  Lots of biking, swimming and weight lifting.  Not to mention a little scale back to recover from the marathon.  Now I'm ready to go again.  The warming temperatures are not helping at all.  Every time I walk out the door in the morning I feel that urge within me to just run.  Warmer temps also bring out even more runners and I zone in on them everywhere I go.  Yes, I have been known to have a melt down in the van while seeing someone running.  I'm happy for them, yes I am, but could they just keep their running to 10 p.m. to 4 a.m. while I am in bed & can't see them.  Come on people...think of us poor pitiful injured people.  Quit being SO selfish.

Ok, all irrationality aside, the flip side of this all makes me stop and think about what I am really doing.  Is it going to do me any good to not properly treat my foot and continue to barely keep going with poor to little training.  I know the answer is no, especially if I want to actually achieve my goal of 100 miles in 24 hours.  I also just registered for my annual Howl at the Moon, 8 hour ultra run that is held every August.  Even though I had planned to do my backyard 100 miler in June, it can wait for when ever I am ready.  However  time is ticking when it comes to August.  This will be my third year for Howl at the Moon, I'm hoping to break 40 miles.  I have to be serious about this if I really want to achieve that goal.

The answer is obvious, I have to sideline myself & take time off to proper deal with my foot.  For now, the plan is to take the month of May off of running.  That does not mean I will not workout.  It will not mean a thing expect my lack of miles.  I will likely become very frustrated, but I have decided that I WILL NOT WHINE!  A few things have prompted this.  I have a friend, who despite running massive miles and being in top notch shape, has suffered a slipped & herniated disk.  Reading about her inability to barely even get out of bed is a reality check for me.  Today while biking I was reading my latest issue of Runner's World, an article about Alison Delgado really made me appreciate not only the grand scheme of my injury, but also the great ability to fight and come back regardless of any injury (and hers was the grand daddy of them all, mine...not so much).

What is this great & mighty injury that has me sidelined?  Good ole plantar fasciitis.  I know....I know.....all you real runners might just hoff at the idea.  Seriously...that's it?  Well, for me, even if it's a hang nail, if it keeps me from running it's the end of the world.  I have had pf before, but the symptoms were different and much more mild.  It took next to nothing to treat and fix that bout.  This time, it's much different.  It's going to require a different plan of attack.  Considering that I've either ignored or barely slapped a band aid on this problem for almost 3 months it's going to take more to get back to a good healthy running state.  I'm in this for the long run...yeah, pun intended so that means I have to do this right.  So if you hear me give any hint of whining, you may slap me and remind me of this:

What about you?  Do you have something you need to quit whining about?  Running?  Life?  What do you need to honestly and properly deal with to keep going down this path of life the right way?

Friday, May 4, 2012

Friday's Finding, a Deal & a WINNER!

I usually  have a tough time blogging on Friday's.  It's suppose to be the day I tell/show you all that I've found out on my runs.  Which, the last time I posted on a Friday I did show you all of my loot that I had been out finding and collecting.  Since then my running has been coming to an ever screeching halt.  I kept going enough to get me through my marathon and now I am officially on break for the time being (a subject to be dealt with on a later post).  So no running = little to no treasure.  I did pick up this a few weeks ago:

It initially caught my eye because due to an unplanned theme I was always on the look out for glass bottles.  Previously each glass bottle had always been from an alcoholic beverage.  When I picked this up I was surprised to see it be non alcoholic.  When I have picked up bottles in the past I always carried it thinking "I really hope people don't think I'm drinking vodka along my run".  This time I was just as embarrassed & thinking  "I really hope people don't think I'm drinking Mountain Dew while I run."  I have nothing against the sugary, bad for your health and body drink.  I'll be honest...I love me a MD from time to time.  It's not a common choice of drink though, I know how bad it is for you.  So, I'm not sure which is worse....people thinking I drink alcohol or pop while I run.  Not that it matters....who cares what people think.  Anyway, score a find for my stash.

Speaking of findings, I wanted to share a wonderful deal with you all.  If you click on this link you will find a daily deal for a $50 gift card for only $25 to Go Outside and Play a running store located here in Galesburg.  Now, even if you are not from Galesburg this is still a deal to snag.  If you live within reasonable driving distance & will be here with in the next few months (gift card is good until July 31, 2012)  then this is just the deal for you.  Aside from the great stock & product that the store carries, the owners, Nick & Tracy Pigg are absolutely phenomenal people.  The are experienced runners themselves and really know their stuff.  I'm not trying to brown nose them or anything and I'm not being paid to say this at's a great store run by really great people.  Come check it out and score some great running gear while you are at it!!  It will be worth the trip.

Last, but not least, to start off the weekend, I am going to announce the winner of my first ever giveaway.  A FREE entry into our very own local  Galesburg Half Marathon Express.  Thank you so much to the owners of Go Outside and Play for donating this prize!!  If you missed entering this giveaway, rest assure that I will have other giveaways in the future.  Not for this particular prize.  However I already contacted another company & am awaiting their product to be shipped to me to review and giveaway in the near future.  So stayed tuned for future giveaways!!  And now...time to announce our winner....
Number 26 means nothing to you because you don't know who was assigned what number.  I will admit being new to this I was a little unsure how to do somethings, so as I often do, I just learn as I go.  It may not be how others do it, but I made it work.  I took all those that entered & assigned them a number on a spreadsheet, based on the number of entries they earned.  That gave me a total of 33 entries and number 26 had been assigned to our winner:


Congratulations!  Please contact me at to give me your information and claim your prize.  Thank you to everyone who participated in my first ever giveaway.  You can still register for the Galesburg Half Marathon Express to come enjoy the race.  They even extended the rate hike deadline to May 15.  So you still have time to register at the lower price of $60 and not only get to run at a great event, but get a whole lot of swag to make it even more worth your while.  If you can't run the half marathon, please know that there is also a 5k and 1 mile run being offered that same morning.  Something for everyone.

Have a great weekend everyone!

Thursday, May 3, 2012

Three Things Thursday

*If you missed my vlog from yesterday or just am not into the whole vlogging scene (totally fine, to each their own) then I will show you what fun you missed.
Yep, I ripped off my going to fall off anyway toenail.    Today it looks a little redder.  From the untrained eye it appears that I have that toenail painted red.  Other wise I don't notice it at all.  It made me realize that I always lose this toenail when I run a marathon or longer.  I have no problem growing it back.  Which means it'll be back just in time for me to run Howl at the Moon 8 hour ultra and lose it all over again.  Oh, the life of a runner.

*Do you see this Tough Chik?

Yep, I was a toughie, even as a kid.  I got to thinking about this picture yesterday because I was mad at the computer and made the comment that I was going to beat someone up.  I later recanted that statement, but it's not like I could claim that I would never beat up someone.  Oh, the stories I could tell that involve broken noses, trips to the er for stitches and in school suspension on more than one occasion.  What can I say?  I was just a kid/teen.  It's not necessarily reflective of who I am now, but my history none the less.

I'm not promoting violence among children, think that my reasons for fighting were ok or that to be tough one must by physical.  I just knew that at a young age I was tough.  You don't mess with me, I WILL take you down!  When I came across Tough Chik I knew this was just the place for me.  They have a wonderful team that you can join.  Now, if you are thinking.....I'm so not tough like Carmen....then don't worry Tough Chik is a state of mind, not a physical performance level.  YOU get to set your own definition and limits of what tough is.  Let's face it....if you are a are TOUGH!  Take a look at the team and JOIN THE TEAM!  Registration is only open until May 13!  Don't miss out!

 *Have you signed up for my 100th post giveaway?  Huh?  Huh?  Huh?  WHY NOT?!?!?!  Ok, ok...I know it's a pretty specific giveaway so a lot of people need not apply.  I'm still very excited about giving away a free entry into the Galesburg Half Marathon Express.  I am also very excited about how this promotion has helped lead other people to my blog to enjoy this insanity craziness little thing I call life.  It has also helped bring awarness to what I'm sure is going to be a fabalous race here in the 'burg.  My giveaway ends TODAY!  Don't miss out and enter now!  Winner will be posted tomorrow morning.

Wednesday, May 2, 2012

Vloggin' Wednesday

OH! MY! GOODNESS!!!! YouTube is soooooooo slow in loading videos. I suppose it doesn't help that my camera is HD, but still. I made my videos at 9 a.m. this morning and it has taken all day to get them loaded. I suppose that would be cue to not talk so much and make my videos shorter. That is like telling me to not run....just how is that possible.  Well, anyway....I'll work on it....maybe....

You get a 2 for 1 special today. For your viewing pleasure you can see this short video:

And here is my normal vlog, talking today about my body & weight and food, exercise....all that fun jazz that I don't like to talk about, but did anyway.

OH! MY! This time I might throw in a swear word. Ok, not really, I'm typically not the swearing type but I certainly feel like it!!!! I just went to find my other vlog and it's nowhere to be found. I could just re-load it, but it will take HOURS! I just got off the phone with Susan telling her all I had to do was slap this video on & I would be good to go. So this is it folks, I am calling it a day on blogger. The other vlog will just have to wait. 

Have a GREAT Wednesday everyone!!

Tuesday, May 1, 2012

Tuesday's Tunes - Randomness

I did not run today.  I did workout yesterday and plan to tomorrow as well.  It just won't involve any running.  My foot is really ticked off at me right now, so I'm doing my best not to aggravate it any more.  After all, what goes around comes around and if I want my foot to be nice to me then I better do the same.  To keep with my usual daily themes, I thought I would post my playlist from my marathon last Saturday.

I use the term playlist very loosely.  Up until recently I have a specific "RUN" playlist.  I knew it was needing some revamping and without me knowing it a certain 4 year old sweet precious child who bears the same name as I, deleted the whole list.  I kept meaning to get it back and going on my ipod.  At about that same time I was challenged to have any and every music inspire/motivate me when I run, not just certain fast paced ones.  I love all sorts of music so why try and get real specific about it.  It seemed that when I really REALLY needed motivation all the wrong kind of songs came on anyway.  Songs that I thought would motivate me, didn't.  I needed to stop relying on moving TO the music and just let the music move me.

On my ipod I have about 2,000 songs.  Only about 1,000 of them I would consider favorites.  Songs that I know the words to, love to sing and dance to no matter what.   I chose that playlist to shuffle through at random for my marathon music.  I also have podcasts on my ipod, mostly from Mark Driscoll.  I had planned to flip over and listen to a podcast, but the mood never struck me so I stuck to music for the whole 4ish hours I was out on the course.  Some songs went in one ear & out the other.  Some I sang and even danced (the best you can while running) to.  Some of the songs moved me to have my hands lifted high or beating out the rhythm.  Some brought back memories of many years past.  Some gave me a quiet peace and others had me screaming on the inside.  It was only toward the end that I had to skip a few songs because I was needed a high level of motivation and distraction.  I forced myself not to be too picky though, again not wanting to rely on the song too much.

Some of the songs I have listed may not be the exact version that I listened to, but close enough.

Quantum Leap - TV Theme Song
Once in Love with Amy - Barry Manilow
Wheel of Fortune - TV Theme Song
He'll Take Care of You -
Amor Prohibido - Grupo Bryndis
I'll Always Love You - Taylor Dayne
Miss Independent - Kelly Clarkson
Go Cubs Go
Krazy - Pitbull feat. Lil Jon
How Deep is Your Love - Bee Gees
M-M-M Monster Meal
Say You Say Me - Lionel Richie
Celebration - Kool & the Gang
Fat Albert - TV Theme Song
Best of Both Worlds - Hannah Montana
I've Got a Dream - Tangled Soundtrack
Take Me Away - Freaky Friday Soundtrack
Worthy is the Lamb
Crucified with Christ - Phillips, Craig & Dean
Mr. Mistoffelees - Cats Soundtrack
Anne of Green Gables - TV Theme Songs
Come Thou Fount - Baptist Bible College brass quartet
Sometimes by Step - Rich Mullins
One Way Jesus - Hillsong
Fantasy Island - TV Theme Song
Glory to God - Fee
Somewhere Out There - James Ingram & Linda Ronstadt
We Rock - Camp Rock Soundtrack
Rejoice in the Lord - Ladies Be Joyful
Our Song - Taylor Swift
El Shaddai - Amy Grant
Happy Working Song _ Enchanted Soundtrack
The Wonderful Cross - Chris Tomlin & Matt Redman
You are the Sunshine - Stevie Wonder
Gonna Fly Now - Rocky Soundtrack
Breakaway - Vitamin String Quartet
Leave it all to Me - iCarly TV Theme Song
Wake Me Up Before You Go Go - Wham
I Got You Babe - Sony & Cher
Baliamos - Enrique Inglesias
I Want You to Want Me - Cheap Trick
Eternal Flame - The Bangles
Na Na Hey Hey Kiss Him Goodbye -
Wild Thing - Tone Loc
Saving All My Love for You - Whitney Houston
Silver Spoons - TV Theme Song
I Dreamed a Dream - Les Miserables Soundtrack
Take My Life - Scott Underwood
Bonanza - TV Theme Song
Blossom - TV Theme Song
So What - P!nk
If I Can't Have You - Bee Gee
Casper the Friendly Ghost - TV Theme Song
Stop! In the Name of Love - The Supremes
His Strength is Perfect - Steven Curtis Champman
Maid Marian - Robin Hood Prince of Thieves Soundtrack
I'll Make Love to You - Boys II Men
All Shook Up - All Shook Up Musical 
Got My Mind Set On You - George Harrison
Leader of the Pack - Shangri-Las
Rock Me Amadeus - Falco
All the Man that I Need - Whitney Houston
Baywatch - TV Theme Song
St. Elmo's Fire Love Song - Soundtrack
If I Can Dream - All Shook Up Musical
Welcome Back Kotter - TV Theme Song
Better Is One Day - Matt Redman

I wanted my songs to be completely random.  Although upon further thought with other events of the weekend, I realize I don't really believe in randomness.  Everything happens for a reason. Sure, some have a bigger impact on our lives than others.  I guess I've always known/believed this, it's just been pressing on my mind today.  Ya know....being all deep and theoretical and junk : )

Before I let you go for today.....did you remember about my GIVEAWAY for an entry into the Galesburg Half Marathon Express.  You must enter HERE to be eligible for free entry into the half marathon on June 3.  The deadline for this giveaway is THURSDAY, MAY 3.  I plan to announce the winner on Friday, May 4th.  Just what someone needs to kick off their weekend.  Don't miss out on what I'm sure is going to be a fantastic race.  ENTER NOW!