Daily Chatter

Thursday, December 30, 2010

Three Things Thursday

Army Sons leaves in 3 more days.  He is not eager to go but I think he is eager to have this final bit of training done and move forward with his future plans.  We have enjoyed getting to share so many holiday tradtions with him home.  It was wonderful to have him seamlessly back into our daily routine.  He was a very missed cog in our little family machine.  The upside is if things go well we may get to see him again at the beginning of February.  I'll be praying for that. 

My little kids have been so enjoying their time off school and pre-school together.  It is so nice to see them playing together.  Although there is a 7 year age gap they behave as if they were born a year apart.  (I should have known this to be true since there is an 11 year gap between Army son and S'ghetti girl)
The most wonderful thing is to see S'ghetti girl really taking pride in "working" with LBM to teach him things.  And LBM being so defensive of his big sister when she gets into trouble.  I have worried that the age differences would keep them from having what my sisters and I share but after having them all together again and seeing how they pick on, comfort, harass, help, listen to, ignore eachother I know that the years between them haven't changed a thing; a brother and sister will always be there for each other.

And no three things post would be complete without a running related topic:
I added a widget to my blog.  Did you notice?  I did.
I noticed that it was telling me that I only have 66 days until the first of my two March Ultras.
Seneca Creek ~ March 5th and the HAT Run ~ March 19th
With Army son home the past two week have flown by and two weeks is 14 days.
14 days is 21.2% of 66 days which means that the next 14 days will go by just as fast and then I'll only have 52 days and then only 38 days and then only 24...
How can something I want to happen make me so crazy nervous before it happens?

Today is Day # 235
"Find your happy pace" ~ One More Mile 

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

What it's like

The sun hung over the ridge line to the west casting enlonged shadows across the once fruitfull corn fields.  Pinks and reds were painted across the sky as if they had been put there by a thoughtful artist.  The wind reduced to a mere breeze offered me little resistance as I walked out into the closing day.  I breathed in a mixture of pine and damp earth from the last melting remants of snow.

The scene was inviting me out, back to the road, back to the familiar route that I have traveled countless times through endless seasons.  A feeling of excitement rose within me as I jogged down the gravel driveway, the sound of my shoes pressing the stones together only quickened my pulse.  As I turned right onto the road running into that setting sun I couldn't help but be filled with the feeling that this was exactly where I was supposed to be, doing exactly what I was supposed to be doing.

God has blessed me with the gift of running
and I am forever grateful.

Monday, December 27, 2010

Our Holiday

Our holiday activities started bright and early with the cousins breakfast.  My younger sister started a tradition of taking her nieces and nephews out the morning before Christmas for breakfast.  What started as a group of four has grown a little over the years.  Although she is now accompanied by her husband, Hubbs and I decided to join the fun and offer another set of hands to help keep the little ones under control plus we got to visit and enjoy a healthy breakfast together. 

Christmas Eve ~ Day # 229 ~ 10 miles
I know you love the headphones!

And by healthy I meant completely yummy but not so good for me so after breakfast Hubbs and Army son went to finish shopping and the little kids and I went home so I could run.
(Runner first)

After Christmas Eve service at church we all gathered at my mother's house for our gift exchange. 
Biking Sherpa loves Hello Kitty.  Could you guess?

Christmas Eve at my mom's is another wonderful tradition that we all love.  We mostly love the hanging out in our pjs part.  The guys don't join in that part.  This year's main event was my BIL cutting himself with a knife trying to open a toy for his little boy.  Today's packaging, that's a post for another day.
BIL ended up going for 4 stitiches and otherwise is fine.

Christmas morning we woke up to a steady snowfall.  It really made it feel like Christmas.

LBM was not so sure about the need to get up early and Army son has been enjoying going to bed and awaking up when he wants to, a luxury he will not have for very long.
But S'ghetti girl could not have waited another minute! 
She was just a excited to give out her gifts as she was to get them.

Our Christmas day was wonderful.  We exhanged gifts in the morning and enjoyed a day spent together.
We shared another lingering meal with our families and left the distractions at home.
I'd say one of the best gifts we received was simply the gift of time.
Time to be together.  Time to actually listen to one another. 
Time to take a breath.
Time to see who we each really are and what we mean to each other.

Day after Christmas ~ Day # 131 ~ 15 miles

....and time to run!

Friday, December 24, 2010

Santa came early

Whew!  What a busy wonderful Christmas Eve day.  

 I had to share this with every one and my thanks to MCM Mama for my wonderful bloggy gift!  Home made cookies, candy, Nuun, tie-dye knee highs, ear muffs and two awesome Christmas plates.  Wow!  She really knows me.
Thanks so much!
I hope Santa is great to everyone and you are blessed with many hours with the ones you love.
Merry Christmas everyone.

-- Sent from my Palm Pre

Thursday, December 23, 2010

When you don't even know

I spent my morning run remembering a very cold day when Hubbs and I stood before this man (P) a long time family friend and our minister as we promised to spend our lives together.
With our current living situation Hubbs and I didn't talk this morning to wish each other happy Anniversary.  I sent a text and he emailed me.  Romantic, I know.  But for us it's okay we will see each other tonight.  I did however run into P while I was out briefly during my work day. 
He was with his family on his way for a doctor appointment.
He is battling cancer.

When he saw me his face lit up, arms went out and he greeted me with a long hug.  As we hugged he told me how he was thinking of that cold day long ago too.  He remembered little things about our freezing cold service.  We were married in a very old church building that was the beginning site of the church I belong to now. 
There is not heat. 
The building has a lot of history for me.  I used to play in it all the time when I was a child because they never locked it then. 

How great it was to know that P was lifting us up in prayer and celebrating with us this morning.
Despite what P is facing today, struggling to have tomorrow, his thoughts were still on others.

This is the kind of person who was with Hubbs and I as we stood before God.
Now that's a reason to celebrate. 
So today instead of telling you how very much I love my husband and how much we have each grown because of the other, I wanted to tell you about the kind of person I pray we will each become.  Because without him and all the many many times he prayed for us; when I didn't even know he was, Hubbs and I might not be celebrating our anniversary.

Happy Anniversary to my wonderful husband
and Thank You to our wonderful friend who started it all.
God Bless you P.
Sorry no wedding day photos.  This is S'ghetti girls dedication which P performed also.


Wednesday, December 22, 2010

Just not one of those runs

Last night I was plodding along - in one place - on the treadmill.  Army Son was out doing his Christmas shopping and the kiddos were playing upstairs.  I hadn't gotten out in the morning so I had more miles than I wanted to put in yet to do. 
That was kind of the theme of the entire run.  I simply couldn't get into the right state of mind.  I was thrilled when a delivery interrupted the run.  I was happy when LBM needed a diaper change mid run. 
It just wasn't one of those kind of runs.

Day# 227 ~ 3.5 am rum

This morning however, I popped out of bed to get S'ghetti girl off to school.  LBM slept through it all.  
Army Son was still in bed asleep.  So I did what any running mom would do.
I quickly pulled on my gear and ran out the door.
Now this morning was one of those runs! 

The bonus:  they never even knew I was gone.

Have you ever done that?  Left kiddos in bed to go for a run?
please note that there was still a semi-grown up available for a screaming little kiddo who might wake up

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

Days in my life

In typical holiday fashion life has been busy.  I have been putting in my miles both inside and outside keeping my base mileage around 50 - 60 miles per week through the holidays knowing that March and my first known races of 2011, will be here before I am ready for it. 

We are blessed to have Army Son home with us through the holidays.   
The family hasn't been together for about a year so we have a lot of catching up to do in what little time we have.  Army Son has a large group of friends to spend time with also and he's need to find some solitude before he goes back to share nearly every minute of life with his battle buddies.

We all made sugar cookies at my sister's house.  The kids have fun decorating each cookie and everyone enjoys testing the end results. 

It is a really nice way for all the cousins to get together, share a tradition and make memories. 
LBM currently believes he IS Buzz Lightyear.  He worn his Buzz outfit all weekend long.  Last night I finally got him to let me wash it!  I told him the lasers wouldn't work if it got any dirtier.

Day # 225 ~ p.m. run 10.5 miles

And that brings me back to running.  Last night on the treadmill since my helper Army Son was out visiting with friends.  I am getting used to the routine but miss taking LBM out in the stroller. 

Who knew that I would actually miss pushing that heavy ackward thing?!
Soon enough, right?

Saturday, December 18, 2010

Finally here!

Ttoday is day # 223
That's not really of any importance to me today, oh I will make time to run but mostly because I need the exercise, love it and have a BOAT LOAD of excited energy to burn off!

What is a BOAT LOAD you might ask?

Well a boat load is the amount of excitement you build up in about 9 1/2 months waiting to see your oldest son come home from the Army!

I will finally get to hug my 'little squirt' again.
I'll hear his voice and be able to look at his face.
We'll be able to talk without someone saying, sorry I couldn't hear you.
We'll get to talk about his time away, friends he has made and experinces that he had all on his own.
I can not wait to meet this man who was my "little squirt." 
I can not wait to know him as a man on his own making his own choices.
Just to be part of seeing that kind of new excitement in his eyes as he tells me about the things he has done and places he has seen.  This is what parents work towards, the day when your children come back from striking out on their own to share their lives with us...
because they want to...
because they miss us...
because they love us.


I am just a little excited.

Friday, December 17, 2010

A Quick Question

Today is Day # 222
It kind of feels like a new kind of milestone.
I like the number.

In fact I have been noticing that I am seeing loads of duplicate numbers, like when I look at the clock or check my watch during a run.  It's been happening often. 

Speaking of numbers noticing numbers I asked a question on DM and FB the other day.  You know DM, right?  Daily Mile is a resource many of us use to track and share our workouts.  I started using Daily Mile to show my runs for last years HBBC and now due to the connections I've made and another great round of the HBBC I continue to post my runs on Daily Mile.

After a recent morning run, I posted my run time
and asked if any of the moms could tell me what a 23 19 was.

No one knew.

So I am asking again since many of you don't follow me on DM or on FB,

What do you think of when I say, 23 19?

Counting down to Christmas
Always room for a random photo of the kids.
What are your plans for the weekend?

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Three Things Thursday - and then some.

I recently won a gift certificate to a wonderful company Zoe Clothing Company.
Their clothing is faith inspired.  I love using creative ways to begin a conversation with someone who you may otherwise have not gotten the chance to influence.
The downside is nothing I ordered fits.
Didn't I just post about realizing my true size?
Yes.  Yes I did.

The kids and I started decorating the Christmas tree.  So far all that is on the tree aside from the lights are all the homemade decorations that the kids have made over the years.  S'ghetti girl thought that the tree was pretty crowded already.  LBM decided to enjoy the beauty by being our first present under the tree.
Now he's a LBM-in-the-box.

I am still on the treadmill most runs.  Usually only getting outside in the early morning and the weekends now.  The upside is the increased mileage and the ability to do a little speed work since I am not pushing the stroller while I am on the mill.  The downside is the loss of resistance from pushing the stroller.  It's amazing how much "softer" my arms and core are from not running with the stroller.
Poor LBM will be in the stroller until he is 15 just so I can consolidate my workouts!
But for now I am adding in my yoga and weights after running when I can. 

And incase you were wondering - and I know you were - it's day
just sayin'

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

SUAR tagged me...does that make me famous too?

Beth at Shut Up and Run tagged me to answer a few questions about me.  
Good topic.  I think I'll get the answers all right!

What are you most proud of accomplishing in 2010?

I am most proud of making the switch to ultra distances this year.  I have been wanting to move off the road and see just how far I am capable of going.  This year I not only did it but just like my first year of marathon running, I did three.  Thanks family!

What are your running goals for 2011?

50 miles and beyond.

What was your favorite race?

My favorite race from 2010 was the
Skyline Challenge Trail 50k.
No race photog but great aid stations, great volunteers,
nice race shirt, the best views of any race, 
great cookout after and a cool river to sit in after all those miles.
It was in July which might make you think it was hot but I lucked into rain which I love to run in and rain makes mud which makes trail running way more fun.  For me the day simply fell into place and it was the best race of my life! 
What is your favorite holiday guilty pleasure?

Way too many carbs...of any kind.
What is your most embarrassing running moment?

Which CFE (corn field emergency) would that be?

Tag at least four people who comment on your blog.

Marlene of Mission to a(nother) Marathon
Jess of 21 Days
Jill of Run with Jill
Heather of View from the Shoe
if you were already tagged, sorry but you were my first four comments on my last post.
Thanks for being there with me!

Tuesday, December 14, 2010

About the dishes...

This weekend while the family was all in Virginia soaking up the warmer weather I got to check out the neighborhood a little more during my run.  You might remember that I did not like the lack of shoulders on the roads in VA. 
Quite often the roads are lined with a ditch.  Not too runner friendly.  In fact I don't think it would be very tire friendly either if you had to get over for a road hog while driving.
But back to my point.  The run was feeling hard from the start but I set out to do 8 miles so I kept running trying to make that switch from treadmill to road and trail.
The miles ticked away and I was finally feeling comfortable with my pace and stride
and then I started finding these.

Now it's not for everyone to carry four porcelain dishes, one cup and a stoneware serving tray the last two miles of their run but for me I think it added a little extra upper body work to the run.

Day # 219 ~ 3.5...so far

Now back in PA and on the treadmill as we are having another winter storm, I think our family is going to do a litter pick up along our road in VA next weekend. 
Sunday Hubbs, LBM and I went back out for a walk while S'ghetti girl was playing with a friend the trash along the road is terrible!  But we did enjoy getting out in the drizzle and gathering the rest of the dishes that I believe had be thrown at trees and utility poles by teenagers.  (I hope they didn't steal them but I think they probably did)
We found 2 dinner plates, 5 desert plates, 4 cups, a large stoneware serving plate and 2 porcelain tea pots.  S'ghetti girl is already planning her next tea party.

Saturday, December 11, 2010

What do you get out of your running?

What do you get out of your running?

Yeah, stress relief, fitness, non-mommy time, time with friends, caloric burn, time to pray, think, or not think blah, blah, blah...

I get all that to and...
Don't be jealous

 but I also get dishes.

-- Sent from my Palm Pre

Friday, December 10, 2010

Just a Country Girl Running

The snow is coming. 
The upper end of the ridge line was whited out as the snow crept it's way down the cove as I ran this morning.
Yeah, outside!
I made it back just as the flakes began to fall around me. 
I wish I had more time since I love running in the snow.

Day # 215 ~ 3.5 / 26:32

I didn't get up super early since LBM was up coughing through the night and we had very little sleep.  Even though I really wanted to just crawl back into bed after I got S'ghetti girl on the bus I knew I had to get outside for a few miles.
With weather shield and heating pad in place we headed up the road. 
My pace felt easy the first mile which often happens after being stuck inside for so long but when I looked at my time I knew I was going to have a great run.
I just went with whatever my legs could give me and it felt comfortable.
After reading some other posts this morning, I know that I fall into running most of my runs without a pre-determined pace.  I wish I cared more about that but I don't.
I typically run because I love doing it.
Do I regret this training method in some race?
You bettcha!
I know that structured training produced predictable results.

But right now and into the beginning of the New Year, life is just real good remembering that I am simply a country girl who loves to run trying to raise country kids who I'll always be able to catch!

Thursday, December 9, 2010

Three Things Thursday

Day # 214 ~ 3.5 morning miles

I have been tired for the past week and a half.  With all the extra activities of the holidays I am not surprised.  I do wonder if all the running-in-one-place has anything to do with it?
Not the fact that I am putting in extra miles (hello!  HBBC points!) but the fact that I am not getting outside to run.  Winter storms, wind and a sick LBM have kept me inside for 10 days now. 
I think I get something from running outside that simply moving my body in the same motion inside does not give me.
I hope tomorrow morning to finally end the running-in-one-place streak!

I am trying to be more creative.
I made this wreath for my mom. 
Shhh!  She is my secert sister for church. 
She sews and makes quilts for new babies in the area. 
I think it needs more balls on it.
What do you think?

I had to take cat who still has no name to the vet yesterday.  Then I get a call from our sitter that LBM is complaining that his lower back hurts.  She called and told me this yesterday also however that evening he only showed the same symptoms that he has had, runny nose, coughing and flushed cheeks.  But this call she felt he needed to go to the doctor. 
I work.
But being the good mommy, I promptly called the doctor who of course wants my money felt it would be a good idea to take a look at him.  So I left work with a mountain of papers on my desk to run to the doctor.  Great I thought, I can also pick up the cat from the vet and not make a special trip.
I thought what great timing!
Of course, LBM turns out to be just fine.  A cold.  Watch his coughing, keep him hydrated, take his temp, blah blah blah.
We go to the vet.  They are just now working on cat. 
No LBM we can't see cat.  He has to spend the night.
Oh and we can't pick him up tomorrow....
by 4:30.
Great.  I work until 5:00.

Wednesday, December 8, 2010

Love Letter to the Outdoors

Day # 212 ~ Inside again

I sat and watched you yesterday as I wored.  There you were so close and yet 10 days have passed since we were last together.  

You may think that the time I have spent with treadmill has lessened my feelings for you but that is not true.  I go through the motions but I never enjoy the time spent with treadmill as much as with you.  He just doesn't give me all those little extras that shows how well he knows me.  
You give me endless roads and trails, beautiful views, wildlife and nature to enrich my miles that nothing could ever substitute.  

So although I have been gone you are not forgotten and I will counts the days - and stalk 
weather.com - to know when we can be together again.

Always yours in running
-- Sent from my Palm Pre

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

What to do? What to do?

This arrived at work today.
What to do? What to do?

-- Sent from my Palm Pre

Monday, December 6, 2010

What are you asking Santa for?

Sunday ~ Day # 210

This weekend was filled with a lot.
A lot of running in one place.
A lot of wind and blowing snow.
A lot of housework.
A lot of playing.
A lot of preparing.
But finally Sunday morning we did what we haven't been able to do very often lately, we took time to slow down.  After church we attended a lunch and we lingered.  We visited with friends and family.

We even had a visit from Santa!

The cousins enjoyed getting to play together.

S'ghetti girl thinks maybe she is too old to sit on Santa's nap. 
But not too old to share her wish list with him!

LBM wasn't into sitting on a guy's lap but did enjoy his present! 
And made sure to tell Santa a few things on his wish list.
Thanks Santa.
It wasn't the weekend that I thought I might have.  I had been hoping for a early anniversary gift from Hubbs.
The half marathon kind.
But I didn't hint quite hard enough.
And to be honest, I enjoyed the break
of simply running
and stopping when I wanted to.

With the holidays we all are doing more than our fair share of racing around so my next race for now will still be Seneca Greenway Trail 50k and the the Hat Run 50k both are in early March. 

On my Christmas list this year, a strong mind and tireless legs.

What are you asking Santa for?

Friday, December 3, 2010

Run like a child

S'ghetti girl has been working on her fitness.  We have been doing Wii Fitness in the evening and running on the weekend.  It is nice to see her taking pride in working hard and pushing herself while having fun too.
She is always so upbeat and happy when we are done.

All most all my running this week has been inside on the treadmill.  While I am getting great workouts in I am not feeling as good after my run as I had been.  I thought perhaps it was the streaking taking a toll on my mind.  I thought maybe it was my increased mileage.  I just couldn't figure out what I was missing.
And then I saw this photo.  It's not a good photo at all,  the subject is barely in the frame and out of focus
this photo shows everything I have been missing in my recent runs.
It shows the beautiful outdoors of course and that
that running simply because it feels great to do it expression on my daughter's face.

Here's praying we all find it on our next run and then share it with someone else.

But they that wait upon the LORD shall renew their strength; they shall mount up with wings as eagles; they shall run, and not be weary; and they shall walk, and not faint. 
Isaiah 40:31 (King James Version)

Thursday, December 2, 2010

Two Sweaters

With all the down sizing of personal possesions that has taken over bloggy world I feel a little quilty about this but I purchased a sweater, in fact 2 sweaters.

This one...

and one just like it in purple.

Why did I buy two you ask?
You might think it is because I couldn't decide between the snazzy black argyle and the sophitcated purple argyle, you'd be wrong.
I couldn't decide on the size.
I figured if I took a small and a medium in a color I like than the one that fit I would already have and just return the other.
Smart, huh?
Not really when you understand that the reason I questioned the size is that I just can not accept that I would fit into the small.  That I should be wearing that size for it to fit me.
Even S'ghetti girl told me that I should get the small
Why is it that my 9 year old can see me clearly and I still struggle with "vision" problems? 
This issue may be why I own 3 Running Skirts that fall off me after a half mile. 

It's not so much about whether I am X size or Z size, it's about my perception of MY size. 
This is something I have struggled with my entire life.  When I look back at photographs I wonder why I wasn't happier with my level of fitness at a given time because I see that I was in great shape X number of years ago when seeing myself in the photo.

I don't think I am alone in this problem.at.all.

I know that it is a day-to-day issue at times.
Why tell you this in my-world-is-mostly-rosey-place? 
To let those who struggle with feeling the same way know that they are not alone, they are not crazy, they are able to find help and understanding when and if they need it.