Sunday, November 30, 2008

turkey day run

What a fun Thanksgiving. We ran, we ate, we played with the kids, we napped, we saw Bolt, we had too many sweets. That's what holidays are for, right?

And now for my favorite part of this year's Thanksgiving. The Family Turkey Trim 5k. With the help of my mom, I mapped out a course out in the beautiful hills of Hollister. Downhill point-to-point race. Descended 302 feet in 3.1 miles. Not bad.

I took second place! My brother Tyler is such a competitive person that he would have beat me no matter what pace I was running. With less than a mile left in the race, I was gaining on him. But I made the mistake of clearing my throat. He heard it, turned around surprised to see someone behind him, and picked up the pace. One of these days I'll learn to be more competitive.

Results (I don't think anyone minds me posting the results, because I'm pretty sure we all PR'd):
1st: Tyler at 24:09
2nd: Molly at 24:23
3rd: Ian at 26:25

4th: Ashley W at 27:25
5th: Ashley C at 30:54
6th: Kitty at 31:28 (sang and danced the entire way)
7th: Camden at 33:46 (on a rip stick)
8th: Amy and Mom at 41:27 (the run/walk team)

Highlights of the race:
Making the race medals (stenciled cardboard and massive sugar cookies).

Marking the miles in flour (I accidently put the start line in the wrong place so we actually crossed the start line 0.1 miles into the race. And I ran out of flour, so the finish line just read "F" for "finish" or "fast" or whatever f-word my family was muttering after running 3.1 miles).
Spotting turkeys on the way out.

Taking fun pictures at the start line.
Ian and Kitty jumping onto the side of the Suburban during the race to catch a ride. Funny how they think alike.
Kitty dancing the last 100 feet of the race.
Watching Camden fly around the final corner on a rip stick.
Eating the race medal.

Running my fastest 5k.
Feeling awesome the whole time.
Taking second place.
Having a ton of fun hanging out with my family out on an old country road.

I should organize races more often.

(The rest of my pictures will be posted to smugmug tomorrow at work. My internet at home is too slow.)

Tuesday, November 25, 2008

speaking of techy

So I'm not very good at deleting messages from my inbox. My work inbox has countless old messages sitting there staring at me. I have responded to most of them. Sometimes I get ambitious and try to sort them into folders. I get through about a week of old messages and give up. It doesn't even make a dent in the list.

So yesterday I did what I do every couple months. I went through three weeks of email, moved it all to folders, copied the remaining 2,000-ish messages, and dumped them into a folder called "Old Inbox." That's the lazy woman's quick fix to sorting email.

Since then I have maintained a 3-message inbox inventory of only important messages that I am in the process of resolving, which are marked with a blue "to-do" tag.

I was so happy with my pretty (empty) inbox. A little too happy with it, perhaps. A couple minutes ago, an email notification popped up in the corner of my monitor. I literally felt this wave of complete annoyance pass through me. And this thought ran through my brain: That email just messed up my perfectly pretty inbox. Grrrr.

I think it's time for Thanksgiving break. Eh?

Friday, November 21, 2008

techy high school

Technology from the high school. Helpful or annoying?

What happened to the good old days when your parents only knew your grades when report cards came out? Now we have the online student information system, so we can check Richard's grades daily. Do we? No, but we do use it occasionally. It helps, but it also causes a lot of stress.
Helpful or annoying? Helpful, but Richard would probably say annoying.

What happened to the good old days when your parents could write you a note to excuse you from being late? I sent Richard to school with a note the other day. It was easier than looking up the school number and calling. He called me about 20 minutes later and said they don't accept notes. I had to leave a message on the attendance line. What, so someone else can write it down?
Helpful or annoying? Annoying.

What happened to the good old days when your parents occasionally received information from the high school in the mail? Instead they send out emails. Want to know what I got today?

Email 11:43am: Thanksgiving week + Finals schedule
Email 11:48am: The Student Directory is out!
Email 12:24pm: Winter Student Art Show
Email 4:58pm: Friday message from the Principal

Really? Do I really need to be constantly updated about what's going on at the high school? Do I really need 4 emails in one day?

Helpful or annoying?

Thursday, November 20, 2008

christian's demands

Christian is realizing that he does everything around here. So in response he is deciding to take things into his own hands.

Phone call from Christian as I'm coming home from work: "Hey. I have an ultimatum. If you want to come home, you have to come home with chocolate or candy."

I'm lucky I had a bag of dove chocolate with me because it was pretty obvious I wouldn't have been welcome at home without it.

About 20 minutes later, I caught the tail end of Christian's conversation with Richard.

Christian (while covering up the chocolate): "You can have whatever piece of chocolate you want, but I need to have a full glass of water with two ice cubes first."

And then Richard picked up Christian's empty glass and walked into the kitchen.

Daaang, Christian!

this one's for you, jeni

So about a month ago, my friend Jeni sent me the nicest email.

First she gave me a million compliments about my hair (made me feel so good)...

Then mentioned that we have very similar hair (made me feel even better that I'm not alone in the world of not-straight but not-curly hair that does whatever it wants to)...

And finally, she suggested that do a blog post about all the different ways I can do my hair (which sounded like a great challenge)...

So since you are all dying to see way too many pictures of my head, I now present my hair in all its coarse, wavy, thick, crazy, blond-roots-with-brown-tips-y glory.

waterfall in our house?

We've been meaning to make some sort of contraption to hang out bikes in our spare room. We're not ones to actually buy things like that. We make them ourselves. So Christian made a plan. Worked it all out. Went down to Ashley's house to pick up his drill bits. Found studs in the wall.

He just called me at work.

"I hit a water pipe. It's gushing all over."

And then he hung up. I can't wait to hear the rest of the story. Poor guy.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

no desire to run

My family is running a 5k next week. I can't wait to run it, but I have no desire to actually run right now.

I'm supposed to be running 12 miles this weekend with my friends. I can't wait to run it, but I have no desire to actually run right now.

I'm running half of the Cal International Marathon in a couple weeks as part of a relay team. I can't wait to run it, but I have no desire to actually run right now.

Can someone come get me out of bed at 5:30am tomorrow and make me run 3 miles really fast? I seem to be sleeping in instead of running. Glorious, wonderful, completely unproductive sleep. Please. Someone make me run.

Monday, November 17, 2008

ear candy

By the way, I went with orange. It seems to match all my outfits really well. I wonder why that is.

But on to the ear candy of the week. I can't get enough of these songs. I could listen to them over and over. Oh wait. I do listen to them over and over. You should have seen me rocking out on my way home from Hollister last night. I almost missed my exit.

Friday, November 14, 2008


Tonight we stopped by Mervyns' to check out its going out of business sale. Considering everything was 40-70% off, we grabbed some Christmas gifts. And I grabbed a nutcracker. I have always wanted one, but never found any I liked. This little guy was only $10. Good enough for me!

But the best part was the conversation that followed:

Richard: Now we need to get walnuts.
Christian: That thing can't crack real nuts.
Richard: If I throw it at your crotch it will!

Our life would be boring without Richard.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008

if i disappear

If I disappear in a couple years, you should look here:

I'll probably be living in this:

And spending my free time hanging out here:

And here:

And probably wearing one of these:

And running here:

Yeah. That's where you'll find me.

Monday, November 10, 2008

life is precious

As I arrived to work this morning, I learned that one of my dear coworkers passed away yesterday. She was a mother and a grandmother. And a dear friend to all of us. Without fail, she brought in gourmet pastries and pies for our birthdays. She was sure to say a cheerful hello to everyone as she walked past our desks on the way to her office. She brought a presence of kindness and optimism into the office. A presence you could feel. And a presence that will be sorely missed. As she battled her cancer, she never let on to any of us how bad it was. She wanted to live her life as Ann, not as a cancer patient. She cheerfully showed up to work every day until last week, so her passing came as a shock to most of us. I think we can all agree that we loved her. We are happy she is no longer suffering, but we miss her already. Life is precious and she showed it in the way she lived.

Friday, November 7, 2008

taking a breath

I'll be honest. Other than my post to Obama and my birthday wishes to Christian, I haven't felt like blogging. I just can't bring myself to write about witty things when my heart is heavy. But I don't want to write about the things that are making my heart heavy, because we are all tired of talking about them and they are dear to my heart--not dear to my blog. But that doesn't mean they are gone.

I don't want to give the impression that all is perfect in the world and that no one was affected by the elections. I don't want to give the impression that there is celebrating going on when we all know that very good people have been directly affected.

But I also know that wallowing in sorrows does no good. Neither does beating a dead horse (or as my family would say it--beating a horse to death). I am a happy person, and even when my heart is heavy, I believe in enjoying life and making the most of each day.

So today I am taking a breath--a deep breath. And I pray that we all try a little bit harder to understand each other and support each other even in our differences. That goes for both sides.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

happy birthday, christian!

Dear Christian,

You make life so fun. You make it hard for me to leave for work in the mornings. You comfort me when I am sad. You are loved by so many and hated by none. You dream big. You work hard. You make me laugh. Thanks for being born.


Wednesday, November 5, 2008

do you read my blog, obama?

I would like to give a big congratulations to Obama.

Dear Barack Obama,

You just made history. I am proud to be alive at this time and see our nation elect its first African-American president. We are putting our trust in you to lead this country. I wish you much success in your term as president. Make us proud.

Best wishes,


Now can someone tell Obama that I wrote him a note on my blog?

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

couldn't sleep?

I know I should be writing about the elections today, but honestly, I'm sick of them. Although it was fun watching the Red Skins lose last night. The Red Skins pre-election home game has predicted the election outcome of 17 of the last 18 presidential elections (2004 was the exception). If this election follows suit, Obama is going to win. (Gobama!)

But today I'd much rather talk about a more pressing matter. Like a bug bite. A measly little bug bite. A bug bite that itches. A bug bite that wakes you up multiple times during the night to remind you that it itches. A bug bite that makes you get out of bed at the same time two nights in a row (seriously--is it on a clock or something?). A bug bite that proceeds to keep you awake for the next half hour. A bug bite that stops itching during the day just to rub it in that it's really just out to ruin your precious sleep. I am thanking my lucky stars that the killer bug only got me once. And I am buying Benadryl on the way home tonight. Down with killer bugs.

Sunday, November 2, 2008

bug weekend

Bugs have certainly been making their presence known this weekend. Some have become my worst enemies. Some have become my best friends.

On Saturday morning, I went on a beautiful run at Sawyer Camp Trail with some of my friends--one of my favorite places to run. Simply gorgeous. We started running before the sun came up and ran an awesome 10-miler. It was raining for about 3/4 of the run, but it was really fun. Throughout our run, we saw probably a dozen deer, dodged way too many brown salamanders, and spotted a little brown rabbit. Before the sun came up, poor Kristin thought she saw a dead deer on the trail, but it was just a fallen branch. Keep in mind my head lamp isn't that bright--shapes can look pretty scary in the dark. Less than half a mile later, I felt a sharp sting as if someone kicked a rock at my ankle. When the pain didn't subside, I quickly realized something was biting me. In the dark, I swatted at my ankle, but the sting remained. As I pulled I my headlamp off my head to get a closer look, I'm pretty sure I swatted something 3/4 of an inch big off my shoe. But with the dark, the rain, and the sharp pain, I never figured out what it was. All that remained was a red dot and quite a sting. Did I mention it hurt a lot? I walked through it for a while to make sure I wasn't going to have any sort of allergic reaction to it and then we continued on with our run. The sting didn't fully go away until about 14 hours later. Today my ankle is very slightly swollen and mildly itches. I'm pretty sure the same kind of bug bit/stung me on my lower back on that trail a couple years ago. The pain was very familiar. I thought it was a bee the last time, but the fact that this time it was dark out and raining leads me to believe it was something else. Stupid killer bugs. This bug definitely falls on my enemy list.

Today, I went to organize my CSA vegetables and realized the turnip greens and broccoli had aphids all over them. I could have carefully washed them, but there are so many places for aphids to hide (and I have so many vegetables in my fridge) that I just threw them away. Aphids gross me out. They are on my enemy list. A few minutes later, Christian and I were lamenting over our new 80's-rocker beta fish (don't worry--we gave him some regular white rocks so that the confetti rocks didn't freak him out). We've had him for almost 3 weeks now and he won't eat anything. We've tried two kinds of beta food (both of which Hungry Hungry Hippo Young Blood gobbles down with no problem). No luck. I made a comment to Christian that betas eat bugs in the wild and that we would have to catch some tiny gnats. And then it hit me! I had just thrown away a feast of aphids. I fed one to to Young Blood and like the Hungry Hungry Hippo he is, he gobbled it up. So I put a couple in Rocker's bowl and for the first time since we've had him, he actually reacted and within a minute gobbled them up, too! So I spent the next 10 minutes pulling leaves out of the trash. I now have a tupperware terrarium of aphids. Aphids are now on my friend list and Rocker's dinner list.