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Friday, May 28, 2010

Bella, the truck slayer (aka: my dog)

Yesterday was a good day. I feel like I got a lot of stuff accomplished that I wanted done. Jacob got off of work a little earlier than usual and he asked me if I wanted to take my run by myself since it had stopped raining. I jumped at the opportunity and he said that as long as I took Bella with me, I could run wherever I wanted.

Bella is our lovable, huggable, ginormous American Bulldog. She is roughly 100 lbs of pure muscle. Don't mess with her. Or me, when she's around.

So off we went. As I started running, she was on the inside of me, catching sniffs of the plants we were cruising past....until a diesel truck zoomed past us. This apparently was a threat, and Bella must squash it. So she charges it, broadsiding me, nearly taking me out at the knees. That right there almost ended the run. But I didn't want to waste my chance, so continued on. Every vehicle larger than a standard pickup truck caused an issue with her. She wanted to jump at all of them and in a few cases attempted to balls-out sprint after them. This is not conducive to maintaining a steady pace or stride. After one mile out, we headed back home.

Being that this weather is completely bizarre (it poured for a few hours before we went out), I didn't know how exactly I should dress for this little outing. Running pants, tanktop, and long sleeved running shirt were my final decision. I figured this would be a safe bet. By the time we made it home, I was sweating like a pig. Between the run and constant tugging on the leash, I got a whole body workout! I feel good today, and looking forward to the 2 miles again this afternoon.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

Hello, Mother Nature?

I am absolutely mind boggled by this insane weather. It's snowing in Truckee and I just heard that a nearby ski resort is opening it's lifts for -get this- Memorial Day weekend! Hellloooo-o, do I live in California or what? It's nice that my PG&E bill will continue to be nice and low due to lack of a/c use, but a little bit ridiculous that I sent my kid to school in his winter jacket today. Next week he is supposed to have Water Fun Day to celebrate the end of the school year but I don't think I'll be sending him his water play clothes if it continues to be this cold. Thaaat's how I want to start the summer- take my kid to the E.R because of hypothermia. C'mon now.

So yesterday's run was interesting. We thought that maybe just maybe I could do the run with the double stroller with just one kid in it. So I hauled it down, got Justice bundled up and buckled in and off we went. Right away, I knew this would be a problem. The handles on the dang thing are too high and too wide to be comfortable for me. The front wheel? It doesn't swivel so you have to push the whole front end up in the air to turn. The thing weighs about 500 lbs, plus the 30 lb toddler and her baby that she insisted we bring along. Long story short, I got the 2 miles in, although I was cursing under my breath the whole time. I started off a little overzealous, being that I was pushing the stroller for the first time ever, the wind was in my face, and my asthma is ever-present and posing more of an issue due to this lingering cold. This weekend we are heading to Once Upon A Child and trading it in. Isaiah is too big and heavy to ride in it now anyway, and the 30 lb weight difference leaves it very unbalanced and difficult to manuever.

I am feeling optimistic about things. I feel like I got a lot accomplished yesterday with the catch-up stuff around the house that has gone to the wayside while I was busy working 50 million hours a week. There's a lot more to be done, a lot more to be organized and gone through, but I feel really good. Let me tell you, it was awesome last night to have a hot dinner (pork chops, broccoli, and mashed potatoes) and a cold beer cracked open for Jacob when he walked in the door, and I know that he appreciated it too.

Well, now that I've done my cracked out SuperWoman typing for the day, I've used up my time allotted for internet while Justice naps, so off I go to tackle another organizational nightmare!!!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

That's all she wrote- not really.

Today was the last day. Our "Series Finale". It was so odd logging off of my computer for the very last time, looking back to make sure everything was locked for the last time, driving out of that parking lot for the last time. Saying bye to them...but not being able to say, "see ya tomorrow". I miss them already. Even though a few of the girls have been gone for a few weeks already, it was difficult to know that there wouldn't be the instant communicator to chit-chat through or say good morning. Just like that, everything has changed. I have to admit that it was nice running my errands. I felt like a real-life grown up- dropping the dry cleaning off, returning books to the library, returning a movie, picking up some pictures, and grocery shopping. All during the day!! Dinner was done by six and the kids were bathed by 7:30. Jacob is in the kitchen playing chess with Isaiah while Justice plays cheerleader. What a bittersweet day it's been.

Tomorrow is supposed to kick-start my official half marathon training. Lucky me, it's been raining pretty much non-stop since about three pm. And I'm still feeling the trailing chest tightness that comes with every single cold I have. It's two miles on the calendar for tomorrow. If I have to take it very slow, so be it. I am determined to get out there and follow the training as closely as I possibly can. If I have to change the order in which the workouts are done, I don't care, as long as I get them in. I have written out my next twelve weeks' workouts on the calendar in my room so I don't forget and I don't have an excuse. It's on the calendar, so it must be done. I'll keep you all posted, wish me luck!

Saturday, May 22, 2010

Heartbreak in the most raw sense

So I don't mean to be a buzzkill. I hope everyone's weekend is lovely. We here in our clan have a cold. A runny nosed, scratchy throated, energy draining cold. But we are moving along nonetheless.

Today is the anniversary of possibly the saddest day of my life. I've had some sad ones, but this was emotionally devastating to me and my entire family. Those near to us felt our pain and showed amazing support. Let me start from the beginning.

May 23, 2009: For Mother's Day I bought four tickets to a hula production taking place in Vacaville. We picked up my mom and dad at around 4 and headed down to the show which started at 5:30 pm. The kids were with my mother-in-law; it was a wonderful, stress-free, adult night out. The show was incredible. My hula sisters were amazing. We headed home, chatting happily about the things that we saw and felt while we were watching the show. Jacob and I had plans after the show to go catch a movie with a friend of ours, taking full advantage of the kid-free evening. Little did we know that our plans would change, and our lives would never be the same.

After dropping Mom at home at close to 9 pm, we got home and started looking online for movie times. The house phone rang and to my surprise it was my mom. She proceeded to tell me that when they got home they had a message on the answering machine from a hospital in Tuolumne County. My younger sister had been involved in a head-on collision at 5:30 pm that afternoon. She and her fiancee Nicholas were taking my niece and nephew on a road trip to Yosemite. They would not reach their destination that day. On highway 120, a man crossed a double yellow line to illegally pass and hit their vehicle head on. My sister says that she doesn't remember anything after the initial sight of the other vehicle cresting the hill in their lane. I think it's better that way. I can only imagine the things that her mind is protecting her from.

Nicholas, my sister's 20 year old fiancee was killed instantly upon impact. My niece Christina, who was only two and a half, was also a victim of this terrible accident. It was so difficult to see my younger sister going through so much pain that I could not protect her from. She lost her love and her heart. Her daughter and her fiancee, both such huge parts of her life that cannot ever be returned. She herself suffered from a broken hand, shattered kneecap, and multiple bruises and lacerations. My nephew somehow emerged unscathed.

The weeks following the accident were a whirlwind of activity. Jacob and I made ourselves busy planning a memorial for Christina up here. Thanks to all the generous financial contributions by my co-workers and several other kind souls, we were able to hold a very simple but gorgeous memorial service. I believe that in our darkest hours, we are allowed to see the light in others. The kindness of those near to us and even perfect strangers was amazing and truly reflects the goodness of humanity.

I think of them each day, wondering...Random thoughts. On the 23rd of each month, I stop for pause when I realize that yet another month has passed. Today is the 23rd of May again, a day that to me will be never the same. My life will never be the same. I can't see a White Dodge Intrepid without thinking of the pictures of the car after the accident. I think of Christina and Nicholas all the time. I can only imagine the way my sister feels.

For a long time after the accident I felt guilty that I still had my daughter, and I could tell that it hurt my sister too. I would see her hug Justice and squeeze her just a little bit longer than normal. Now Justice is almost the same age that Christina was when she passed away, and my emotions are a turbulent mess. We will get through this. People trudge through much worse every day. I just wish it wasn't us. I wish my sister had gotten married in March 2010 like they were planning. I wish my niece were still around to play with the rest of her cousins.

So here's my wish to you. Live each day in love with life. Don't live in the past, live in the present. Love hard, laugh loud and often. You never know what could be beyond that crest in the hill.

Friday, May 21, 2010


This morning Jacob had to be at work by six. Naturally, that meant that I was up super early with him while he banged around the bedroom getting himself ready. After he left I was torn- what should I do with my time?? I went back and forth wondering if I should just go back to sleep for the few precious minutes OR if I should get my a$$ out of bed and take the dog for a run. Just as I decided to go back to sleep, my phone buzzed on the nightstand. It was my daily email from Runner's World with my inspirational quote of the day. Well, that did it. Up I went, pulling on my clothes in record time. After waking up my sister to tell her that I was leaving, I hooked Bella up and off we went.

I'm sure my neighbors appreciated all of their dogs going crazy as we cruised down the block. It was like they were doing the wave for us, how sweet. And then as we hit the track at the park, the people who backed up the park all seemd to have dogs as well. And let me tell ya, they were super excited about us being there. Bella hasn't been to the park in a while so she had to stop and smell every single thing we passed. Trees, flowers, small patches of weeds...Luckily I have a really long leash so I could keep going and she would come trailing along behind me. We did about a mile around the track and it was time for me to get home and wake up my son.

I love running in the morning! It was a great way to get my blood pumping and once I got home I felt like I was doing everything at SuperMom speed! His lunch was made in the blink of an eye, and I even had time to fold the two loads of laundry I didn't get to last night! I feel more awake today than I have in a really long time, even though I didn't get a whole of sleep.

Today is kind of a rough day. It's the last wave of people leaving (well it's just one person, but whatever) before the last of us depart. Thinking about it is incredibly sad. My friends for so long are not going to be a part of my everyday life any more. The people who could read me like a book, who laughed at my goofy faces and antics will be with a new group of people. I am really looking forward to staying home with the kids and TRAINING. But I am very sad to be closing the book on this chapter of my life; one that is filled with laughter and love and stress and recovery.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

Sluggish Thursday

This lack of activity at work is killing me. Don't get me wrong, I appreciate the time to read blogs and write my own, but really, I can only play around on the internet for so many hours out of the day. Only three and a half more work days left! And we will most likely get to leave early on Tuesday so really only two full work days left.

I feel very very sluggish today. Perhaps the fact that I stayed up way to friggin late last night and my daughter has a cold which meant she woke up several times over the course of the few hours I was asleep. Perhaps the fact that I have thrown all thought to my diet out the window and am not eating smart. C'mon I know better than that! I have seen the changes in my energy level and mood when I eat "right" versus eating "wrong". Time to get back in the swing of things.

On a positive note, Jacob and I got in two workouts with the weights this week. No mileage yet, but I will be getting that done next week. My first day off of work has a 2 mile run scheduled. Thursday will be a 3 mile, followed by another 2 mile on Friday. It will possibly be brutal since I haven't actually hit the pavement in months. But I can do it. And since it's a 12 week program and I have over 18 weeks until the event, I can always repeat weeks as necessary. I think that once I start getting out there and putting the miles in, that Jacob will jump right on the bandwagon with me and echo my workouts in the evening and we can go on the weekly long runs together.

I was thinking this morning that I am sore from our workout on Tuesday. That got me thinking to how uncomfortable this mileage will be. My aha moment in 3,2,1....HELLO!? Am I comfortable being in the shape that I am in currently? Can I not be uncomfortable for a half hour/hour out of my day to keep from being uncomfortable all day, every day, for the rest of my life?? I think I can handle that. And I embrace it. Bring on the discomfort. Bring on the tight, sore muscles. It means progress. It means a better life for me and my family.

Friday, May 14, 2010

Falling into place

No running last night or this morning. What a hectic night. We found an amazing dumbbell set in Modesto at a great price. It's a little heavy for me starting out but we will get a set of 10s and 15s to accomodate me until I can lift 20. We are scheduled to pick up the first load tonight, which left us needing a place to put all the weights! So three hours later...our garage is cleaner than it has ever been! There is plenty of space to park Rosie AND have a massive amount of weights and a weight bench in there. It looks great. We also found a dip station with pull-up bar, etc on Craig's List for only $80 so we will be picking that up tonight. It all feels like it's coming together and Jacob is super excited that we will finally have the at-home gym that he has always dreamed of.

Today Isaiah played the third red hen in his Kindergarten classroom production of "The Little Red Hen". I took an extended lunch to see his performance. I could not have been prouder. He did so well. He had the most lines out of all of the kids and he spoke loudly and clearly so that even we, in the back of the room, could hear and understand him. And best of all, he was so proud of himself. I love knowing that our children will grow up knowing that their parents are proud of them. He had the biggest crowd of people there with me, Russell, Tiffany, Edwina, and Scott all there. Jacob couldn't make it so I got everything on video.

We lost three more people today. They have already left. It's so wierd in here now...and we found out today that people will be here next week to start clearing out the office. They are starting with the loan officer section that isn't used, so we will still have our cubicles and stuff- for now. The countdown is on. Only seven more working days left.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Feeling a little bit....

Pathetic, really. This morning I set my alarm again for 5:30 am. Lucky for me, I have a two-year-old that decided that it was against her religion to sleep last night. I was up with her all night long, and my alarm did me zero good this morning. I'm just glad I got up in time to wake Isaiah up to get ready for school. Tonight is the night. I will be running tonight, no matter what time it is! Hopefully Jacob will be up for it with me since I am not comfortable going out at night by myself.

A few months ago, I had created for myself what I thought was a loose goal to lose 30 lbs by our camping trip. Woohoo I was all gung-ho the day I created the goal, and wrote down my little time milestones on the calendar. Today I looked at the calendar, and to my surprise it says "30 days". OMG. My 'loose' goal is nowhere in sight. I have lost a whopping 4 lbs with 26 to go in one month. What the heck, where did the time go? I'm not about to kill myself and go all crazy trying to hit this goal...but really???? I have to do the best I can to make it happen, otherwise there's another goal turned to dust. I'm really sick of creating these goals and them never coming to fruition.

I'd like to put it out there, my goals for this year. It's difficult to say, because all the experts say not to measure your success by pounds or by sizes but I have to have something tangible to report. Something tangible for me to measure. So some of these goals are wishy-washy, because they will adjust as I start to realize that maybe what I thought my goal weight is not really for me and I am happy and fit and in shape at a different weight.

Goal 1: RUN the Urban Cow Half Marathon on October 2. At this time, my goal is to finish in under 2 hr 45 min. This is based on a very lax 12 minute mile. I will change my goal finish time as I increase in speed.

Goal 2: Be in the best shape of my adult life for my 10 year high school reunion in September. At this point I would like to weigh between 125 & 130 and be in around a size 5.

Goal 3: Wear a bathing suit! Get a tan!

Goal 4: I would LOVE to run a full marathon by my 30th birthday. I have until November 2012 to do it, so lots and lots of time to prepare myself.

Well, that's it for now. Talk at y'all later. Hope it's a fantastic day!

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Find some motivation already darnit!

Today is a strange day here in my little world. Today we lost two of our people in the office. They started their new positions today. When you work in an office of only eleven people, two missing is very noticeable. We lose three more on Friday, one more next Tuesday, one more next Friday, and then we will be down to only four of us until the 25th. It's boring, and I find my emotions are in turmoil.

With regards to my training, I'm trying to find more ways to become accountable. I posted a widget on here to track my mileage, etc. How embarassing to keep it at zero miles for any length of time. So, I hope tomorrow to be able to post my first workout. Jacob will be gone tonight until probably after dark, so I will set my alarm for early morning to squeeze in a few miles. I know that this will be much easier once I'm not tied to a work schedule, but I feel like I need to get something done. I am anxious and need to feel like I'm accomplishing something. I'm certainly not accomplishing anything at work.

We totally scored on a commercial grade weight bench yesterday. It has settings for incline, decline, and flat which is exactly what we were looking for. It's beautiful & folds up nicely with wheels to transport it. And it's all ours for only $75. Now we just have to find the weights to go with it. We are finding it difficult to find a decent set of dumbbells that will serve us both and won't break the bank.

Friday, May 7, 2010

Done: The Beginning

I found out about a month ago that I would be losing my job at the end of May. It was a shocking thing to hear. I have been at this job for five years now, with a few short breaks in the middle. These people that I work with are my extended family; the people that I tell everything to, whether they want to hear it or not. After agonizing for a week over what we were going to do, we decided that I would be a stay-at-home mom. Isaiah and Justice were more important than the material life to which we had become accustomed. At first, I was scared. Now? I'm EXCITED. I will be home with my kids! I can garden with them and play with them and take them to the park! I will set myself up with a routine where I can fit in time for the gym, and running, and my own time when the nap or in the evening once Dad gets home. I am excited for this new change in my life.

Maybe that's why I'm so excited to start working out and running again. We have signed up for a half marathon in October. This gives us 21 long weeks to train. We haven't started yet, but I am really looking forward to it. I'm looking forward to training, and feeling accomplished, and watching the extra weight melt away.