Friday, September 25, 2009

It's go time... well, almost.

The clock is ticking and I am just about freaking out, thank you very much.

Number of miles: 13.1

Time remaining before the gun goes off: about 21 hours

Number of miles I've logged training: ummm... not as many as I am comfortable with.

Average pace of those I am supposed to run with: approx. 9:30

MY average pace these days: a smidge more than 9:30

Weather forecast: cloudy morning/afternoon sun (Much better than the "T-STORMS" predicted)

Amount of water I will drink today to be uber-hydrated: a whole damn lot

Number of times I will take a walk break: as many as I need, baby

Speaking of babies, number of months since I had Bobby: 6.5

Number of months since I received medical clearance to run following C-Section: about 5

I have had five months to get back into pre-baby running shape, and training has been marginal at best. Life sometimes gets in the way like that. But you do what you can. And tomorrow? I am going to take on 13.1 miles through some, shall we say, interesting parts of Fort Wayne. I will do my best and give it everything I have -- but without being stupid and risking injury. I figured that the longest training run I had been able to do before previous half-marathons was a solid five miles, and I did OK. So my training wasn't as strenuous as I'd hoped/planned. I still got out there when I could and did the road work. I will not finish first, but I don't think I'll be last, either. But after the race, as in "cross-the-finish-line-and-grab-a-free-banana-and-let's-go" Jeff and I have to high-tail it out to Jack and Charlie's football game. It's a comeback week for them after a loss last week. I. Cannot. Miss. It. Period. And unless I am rolled into the gutter by fellow runners to wait for the first aid cart, I won't miss it.

For the record, my personal best for a half-marathon is 2:34, which I posted in the 2007 500 Festival Mini in Indianapolis. I tried to break 2:30 in 2008, but failed by a few minutes. I would love to say I hope to achieve this goal tomorrow, but I am just going out there to have fun and see where the numbers fall when my feet cross the finish line.

Because if running isn't fun, what's the point?

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

Addictions and forgiveness on a rainy Tuesday night

It's been a long day. By 9:30, however, the four youngest of the family were asleep. Or at least in bed. Seeing as how I hadn't eaten much all day, I came downstairs to have a bowl of cereal. Someone in the house picked up a box of Chocolate Chex cereal at the store. Let me just go on record by saying they should just go ahead and print "CRACK" on the box. It's that good. You will enjoy it. You will become addicted to it. My first bowl led to a second bowl. There might have been a third if the second bowl hadn't finished off the last of the cereal.

This is what addiction looks like:

On a completely different note, Sid and I had a run in on Sunday morning. Literally. Jeff and I were scurrying about, trying to pack up the diaper bag and get out the door for church. I rushed into the kitchen to grab a bottle from the refrigerator, and somehow Sid got tangled in my feet. He yowled and hissed. Then he limped under the table and kept hissing at me. It was obvious he was hurt, but he wouldn't let me get near him. I felt so bad. When we returned later, he seemed OK, but I noticed he would run away from me for the rest of the day. Seriously. Imagine my surprise when tonight as I sat in the den watching The Office, enjoying my bowl of chocolate crack and milk, Sid wandered in. He eyeballed the spot on the sofa next to me. He jumped up, edging a little closer every minute or so. Soon, he jumped to the back of the sofa and crept along until one paw could reach my shoulder. Pat, pat, pat. About a minute more, and he was sprawled out behind me, obviously forgetting I had jacked up his leg two days ago.

And this is what forgiveness looks like:

Motivation + new day = success

Today is the day it's going to happen.

A combo donation/resale trip of epic proportions.

For about the last couple of months or so, I have been in the process of weeding out a few closets (including my own... no one being thrown under the bus on this project) in an effort to maximize space and de-clutter. After weeks on the job, I now have a box of my clothes to take to a resale shop, an even bigger box of random stuff to take to Goodwill and an impressive pile of baby/boys' clothes to take to another resale shop. The problem? I've been trying to get this stuff the hell out of my house for two weeks. And every time I designate a day to actually load the car and GO, something else comes up and it doesn't get done.

Yesterday, we seized the opportunity to go fetch a dresser from James and Jenny to put in Jack, Charlie and Sam's new room. They more than needed it. I mean, seriously. I was trying to fit three boys' worth of clothing into a small closet and one drawer apiece. Did. Not. Work. Now, with a slightly bigger dresser, there is a bit more breathing room. (That, and I am sort of re-purging their play clothes/summer clothes as I go. Shhh. Don't tell them.)

So, despite my declarations that yesterday was the long-awaited donation day, once again it didn't transpire.

But today? Despite gloomy skies and intermittent rain? IS the day. I am motivated, have hours ahead of me before picking up the boys at school... I feel a successful day coming on.

Sunday, September 20, 2009


I realized I've collected some rather odd photos with the intent of sharing them with you. For one reason or another, I never got around to it, so I thought I'd take advantage of a relaxing Sunday evening to catch up. Here goes...


A few weeks ago we had a Discovery Channel situation on the front porch. A rather large spider took up residence. I wish I had a photo that could give some frame of reference as to how insanely HUGE this spider really was. The best I can say is that he/she could take up most of the face of a quarter. And maybe have its legs hanging off a little. Its web was about the size of a small pizza. So, it was no wonder that a spider of this size would need a fairly good sized meal -- such as this poor bug who had the misfortune of getting caught in the aforementioned pizza-sized web. The boys and I came home one afternoon to this sight. "Charlotte" (yes, I named it) having a nice snack. We all stood there in silence, never having actually witnessed something like this live and in person. Discovery Channel? Yes. Our own home? Not so much.

The funny/freakish part of taking the photos was that, even though I was using a lens that provides awesome close-ups, I was leaning in quite far to get a good shot of Charlotte and her snack. When I leaned in, she may have had the wrong impression that I was trying to sneak a bite. She reared up on her back legs and waved her front legs at me. Repeatedly. This? Freaked the boys out. They were all, "Mom! Be careful!" I laughed and was touched by their concern -- until one of them said, "What if she jumps on you?!" I have to admit, that thought never crossed my mind. Do spiders jump? Can they jump? I didn't want to stick around and find out. We quickly snapped photos from far away and went in the house for our own afternoon snack.

We realized Charlotte mainly came out in late afternoon/early evening, then went up to the corner of the porch overnight. This information came in handy early one morning when I instinctively went after Sid (the cat) who had snuck out the door as we were loading up for school. In my haste, I ran right through Charlotte's web, taking the lower half out with my head. It was 7:15am, so rather than let go with a scream shrill enough to wake the neighbors as well as the dead, I grabbed the cat and ducked back in the house. In the privacy of our front room, I tore off my sweatshirt, bent over at the waist and began shaking my hair out. I prayed Charlotte hadn't come down for an early morning sit on her web, as I raked my fingers through my hair. Good news! No spider hair accessories that morning!

Then, one day we came out and Charlotte was gone. I mean really gone. As in, she tore up her web and went elsewhere. She may have had enough of me, my picture taking and rampant near-destruction of her home.


This one's just so awful. I've got nothing.


...he may be in the same position in his dorm room. Jeff says he'll be surrounded by books, where he crashed after pulling an all-night study session. Me? I have a slightly different prediction. (And, yes, after taking the photo I gently pried his chubby little legs out from between the spindles.)


Do you see how much syrup is left in the bottle? Why?! Why does this make it back into the fridge?