Sunday, October 30, 2011

Lake Tahoe Half Marathon

I have been wanting to run this race for YEARS. I finally buckled down last year and signed up. All by myself. Then I got pregnant (fully on purpose, mind you--but faster than expected). No problem, I thought, I'll just do a walk-run. Then I ended up on bed rest. Blast it all!

So this year I was determined. I got half off the (outrageous) registration fee since I had to drop out last year for medical reasons.

And do you know what? I actually trained hard for this race.

So let me tell you about it...

See this photo of the race start?



Do you see me?

No?

Oh, that's because I wasn't there. I was mixed up about the starting area and was standing near a water stop at the halfway mark of the marathon course with a bunch of other people. The policemen manning the area told me they thought the half marathon started there. As the minutes ticked by and no one seemed to be organizing a start line, I started getting nervous and did a little more asking around. I was in the wrong place! Turns out the start for the half was almost a quarter mile up the side street behind me! We turned to head up the street, and BANG! Off went the start gun in the distance. I wanted to curse the policemen, but it was my fault for not asking the right people. So I started running up the hill toward the start only to be met by a huge crowd of people running down. So I just stood there until half of them ran by, and then turned around and joined them. Easy enough.

However, running UP a steep hill at 6300' elevation trying to get to the start line is not the best way to start a race. By the time I turned around to come back down with them, I could barely breathe. BUT, I realized later in the race, this was the only time I even noticed the elevation. I guess I got it out of my system in the first 3 minutes of the race.

Moving on.

Mile 1-2: Flat/down hill and gorgeous. Rubicon to the base of the "hill from hell." Christian, Graham, and Liam made the best cheering crew ever.

Mile 2-3.5: Up the "Hill from Hell." This is a 1.5 mile hill that climbs from 6300-6800 feet (up to the entrance of Bliss Park). This was practically the best part of the race. I passed people THE ENTIRE TIME. No joke. I guess training at Rancho San Antonio was a good idea. I think maybe 6 or 7 people passed me, while I passed at least 50 people. I didn't notice the altitude AT ALL. I'm pretty sure I was in shock when I reached the top. I'm not normally the one doing the passing in races. Talk about feeling good! And my cheering crew was at the top waiting for me!



Mile 3.5-5.5: Down to Emerald Bay. Absolutely beautiful.

Mile 5.5-6.5: Up, up, up to the other side of Emerald Bay. I definitely started feeling it here, but I kept chugging along.

Don't I look great here? That's on purpose. The other 8 race photos showed what I really looked like. This one is deceptively flattering, so, of course, I'm going to pretend that's how I looked the whole time. :) ("Borrowed" from the race photography site. Don't judge.)

Now let me tell you something. When you have all the difficult hills in the first half of a race, by the time you reach the halfway point, you feel like you've conquered everything. And then you remember that you still have 6.5 FREAKING MILES TO GO!

Shoot me now.

Mile 6.5 to 8.5 or 9 or something: Down, down, down, down. And did I mention down?

Mile 9-ish to who knows what: More or less flat. Oh my gosh. It was never going to end.

Mile 10.5: Water stop where some girls were telling everyone they only had 2 miles to go. I knew we were far from the 2-mile mark. I wanted to slap them. But slapping little girls is really not nice. Maybe I should have slapped their parents who told the girls that they were 2 miles from the end.

Mile 12: I gave in a took a little walking break. Give me hills over flat any day!

FINISH! Then I got to hang out with my cheering crew on the beach. I love them.




Oh my gosh I hurt by the end. But it was so worth it. I'd love to run it again in the future, but this time I'll remember to train for more than just the hills.

I love Tahoe!





Saturday, October 29, 2011

crushing

Crushing on this area rug.


If only I had $1800 lying around somewhere. 

Actually, even if I had $1800 lying around, I'm not sure I could spend that much money on a rug. 
What a waste of money.

But it's mesmerizing. Crushing anyway.

Friday, October 28, 2011

mustache guide

Fu Manchu or Horseshoe. I guess that's technically what was growing on Christian's face. He said that the other night. I just wasn't paying attention.

In honor of my husband's face and all husbands around the world who are forced to shave off their 'staches, I present you with the mustache guides:

Famous Mustaches

 Style Guide

 Typestaches

 The 20 Manliest Mustaches and Beards in History
Brigham Young and Santa Claus make the list. As they should. Check it out.

The Trustworthiness of Beards
My favorite guide. Definitely click to see this one bigger. Note that the Horseshoe falls under "Unsavory" which is dangerously close to "Threatening." Although the lone goatee is only one step below that. Really? Good thing he's normally a scruffy full beard, which beats even Santa Claus in trustworthiness Phew.
{source--everything on this page is amusing}

Thursday, October 27, 2011

handlebars

When I woke up Christian this morning, he immediately got this funny smile on his face.

Christian doesn't wake up with a smile. Ever.

Then I saw this.


Handlebars.

He thought it was hilarious.

He went to work like that.

I couldn't even pay attention to anything he said to me today. I was too distracted laughing.

The molestache has got to go!

We are a house divided.

What's your vote?

camping with the babes

If I could choose one place to be, it would be the mountains. Give me thick trees, soft forest trails, and babbling streams over sunny beaches any day. Just the thought of the mountains is comforting to me.

So, naturally, camping in the forest makes me so happy. So incredibly happy.

We went camping as a family for the first time a couple months back. Graham burned all 5 fingers on one hand within an hour of us getting to the camp site. (While we were vigilantly guarding the fire we were making, he grabbed the top of the lantern. Of course.) Graham proceeded to cry for the next 3 hours until he fell asleep from exhaustion. I mean, who WOULDN'T cry that much after burning all 5 fingers?? The poor, poor little guy. I was so stressed out all evening. I couldn't even hold a conversation until Graham fell asleep. And our neighbors who went camping with us were amazing and were totally patient and helpful and never made us feel like the trip was a bust due to our poor screaming child. 



Luckily, the next morning he acted as if nothing had happened (despite the blisters that had appeared on his tiny little fingers). Graham LOVED exploring the campsite and huge redwood trees. Liam just watched everything in awe the entire time. I'm not sure he ever made a peep.








The second time we went camping there were no burnt fingers! Hurray!

We spent two nights at Memorial Park with a trip to a pumpkin patch on Highway 1 during the day. Despite the fact that the boys barely slept the second night due to the fact that they were coming down with colds (which we didn't figure out until on our way home), it was a wonderful trip. The boys sure love being outdoors and exploring. Graham even got to see his first banana slug. Slimy.
























Christian showed Graham how to roast a marshmallow. Then Christian and I ate a few too many s'mores. Mmmmmm. That's the life, I tell ya. That's the life.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

check it out

Check out my sister's blog. It's gonna be a good one. It has been a rough year for her, so she's starting anew. Moving on. Embracing life as it is. In case you don't know my sister, now you can.

Ashley lives in an adorable little bungalow.


She'll be sharing all her house projects, from ripping out the garage roof to repainting her rooms to sewing curtains. And that's just this week's projects.
She's a landscape designer. She'll be sharing her gardening projects.
And did I mention that she cooks? Vegan and vegetarian food. You'll drool. {I did not inherit any of her cooking skills.}


Many of you know and adore Ashley, but those of you who don't can get to know her now! Go follow her!