Monthly Archives: August 2013

Where There’s Smoke….

Reno has been blanketed in smoke for the last couple of weeks.  The Rim fire is burning with no sign of being able to be put out.  Unless the jet stream changes direction, we’ll continue to be a hazy, unhealthy mess.  It’s been said that the fire – due to it’s remote location – can’t be put out and will probably still be smoldering when snow flies. It’s also been said that Reno will have smoke up to a month after it’s out.  So I’m doing the math……  That’s a long time without being able to go outside and run. The truth is, though, that we’re only dealing with smoke.  Others are dealing with the actual fire.

Arial photo of the smoke and fire.  Just wow.....

Arial photo of the smoke and fire. Just wow…..

The smoke doesn’t bother me like it does other people.  Having said that, I won’t run outside in it when it’s hazardous.  I’ve been studying the numbers to determine what numbers it has to be at for me to run.  The second it drops into a safe zone, I’m gone. Tell my boss…. I might wear running gear under my work clothes.  I need some velcro clothes so I can pull a SuperWoman move and just rip them off and go!!

The levels have been over 200 quite a bit

The levels have been over 200 quite a bit

100 is the number.  Maybe a little higher.  I know, I know….  It’s still not a good idea.  Neither is not running.  Lots of teammates have traveled a couple hours to a town that’s not so smoky.  Some are running indoors on the dreadmill.

Some of my teammates hitting the gym

Some of my teammates hitting the gym

I’m breaking down….  I need a fix….  I can do an hour on the belt, right??  It’s not so bad.  I’ve wanted one at home so I can get in extra running and mileage while still hanging with the kids….  Yes, I can do this!!

What’s The Plan????

Runners are sometimes obsessive. My team has a calendar, my teammates each have their own calendars. A couple of them shared their calendars with me recently and my boss (and teammate) even printed a blank one for the year so I could have a separate race calendar.  I honesty believed the calendar I use to book clients, write down appointments, holidays, birthdays, etc… was good enough.  Silly me.  I already know I don’t have the same intense drive that most of my teammates have.  I’m organized, I push myself and I really enjoy the atmosphere of an event but I’m behind in my compulsion comparatively speaking.  Looking at my friends calendars I took a moment to pause wondering if I’m a slacker.  Nope.  Just different.  My finances dictate how many races, the location, whether or not the kids can come.

And they're OFF!!!

And they’re OFF!!!  Keeping things local keeps cost down.

I used to want to do every race in a 2 hour radius of my house.  Now, I really look at the races and determine my entry based on where, how much and if it’s a good match for me.  I’ve gotten picky.  Not because I’m a running snob but because I’ve given away bags of race t-shirts I don’t wear and I’ve decided it’s quality over quantity.

Since the half marathon is my favorite distance, I almost never do a 5K.  Over the course of a year, it’s a lot of money for not much run.  I’d rather volunteer for those races and be in the environment from that perspective.  Anything under six miles I generally just run on my own.  This is strictly about more bang for my buck.  Also, my kids run this distance and it’s nice when they get to be the center of the running attention. I do maybe one 10K a year.  I like this distance.  It’s enough mileage that I enjoy running it in a group.  If there were more of them, I’d jump on the bandwagon.

When I make my race calendar, I first add the races that are my “A” races.  The ones I really, really want to do.  This year it was Running With The Bears and my first triathlon in Vegas – the Irongirl.  This is where I wanted my time and money to count and both involved some amount of travel.  I also do my coach’s series.  It’s a series of 3 and I can choose the 5K, 10K or half marathon.  They’re spread out, local and fun since I know most everyone.  The kids volunteer and run an aid station for at least one of these every year. (this year so far they’ve run two aid stations which I love, love, love!!!).  Five races in a year just from my top two and my coach.  Already that’s a great race schedule.

After that, races come up and I decide on a per time basis.  Family and finances are the first two considerations as well as training and interference with my A list races. I’ve bowed out of a few this year and others are on my waiting list.

On the remainder of this years docket is my coaches race – Reno 5000 #3 in the series Sept 8.  I did the half marathon, the 10K and now the half marathon again.  September 28th I revisit Taylorsville for a weekend with the girls and a 12 mile race.  Irongirl is at the end of October.

Big news on the training front is my entry into the Napa Marathon in March.  In the past I trained for two marathons and ended up not running either.  I marathon trained with my team last winter up to 17 miles.  The great thing about this race is that most of my team will be going.  The training is so much easier among friends especially in the cold.  Misery loves company!!  Already that’s an A list race for me in 2014 as well as Running with the Bears in August. See guys……  I’m compulsive too!!!

Where’s My Car????

Can’t tell you how many times I’ve bonked but realized I had no choice…..  I have to get back to my car!!

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Laundry

With ten of us in the house a lot of laundry gets washed. Moving created a lot more laundry because I washed all the sheets, blankets, curtains, etc… THIS is what my normal laundry day looks like:

A ton of workout clothes and a couple dressy items from work

A ton of workout clothes and a couple dressy items from work plus a bathing suit or two…..  I can rate my fitness productivity by my laundry that’s hanging

Luau

Running With The Bears has a Luau the night of the race. Racers can finish as slowly as they want, but can also qualify for Boston. The Start/Finish Line closes up approximately 7 hours after the race starts, when the last person is in. Then the staff cleans up the race and sets up the Luau.

Thank you Kevin for your home, your pigs for the Luau

Thank you Kevin for your home, your pigs for the Luau

Kevin, owner of the house and property the race start/finish is at, as well as the luau raises pigs.   He slaughters two for the luau.  I chatted with Kevin for a little while.  He and his wife wanted to open their house to others and this has been one of their endeavors.  The pigs are about 400 pounds each and delicious.

The spit area

The spit area

Kevin and a pig ready to go in the slow cooker

Kevin and a pig ready to go in the slow cooker

I was the guest speaker for the event.  An honor.  A privilege.  Hopefully someone did a video because it was fairly short.  With 12 years of foster/adoption under my belt it was my job to make it personal.  There are statistics, there are pictures of kids without families, there are the people behind the scenes who work to find forever homes for these kids.  It was my plan to show the “after”.  My number of children tends to change.  Right now it’s 11, but 10 “permanent” and my number has been up to 13.  There have been kids who have passed through and touched my life, but these are the ones I kept or the ones I carried in my body.  I did a little talking, then called the kids up with me.  I almost never tell which ones are adopted and which are biological and this was no exception.  They are all mine.  I am blessed.

Random Race Pics

Not only do I enjoy a race – packet pickup, swag bag, energy, travel, etc… Reviewing the pictures after is so much fun. I have exceptional kids who understand the importance of capturing memories (and also the importance of taking pictures for my blog…).  Perusing the photos relives the experience in a different way.  Maybe you see things you didn’t when you were in the moment or you relive the feelings you had.  Here are some shots that do that for me from my favorite race.

Chilcoot Frosty on the way home.  Best soft serve ever!!

Chilcoot Frosty on the way home – we boat at a lake here just half an hour from where we live. Best soft serve ever!!

Small, local company that makes us mini bear soaps.  Love this!!  I used it for my first shower post race at home.  Brings a little of that race love after the fact

Small, local company that makes us mini bear soaps. Love this!! I used it for my first shower post race at home. Brings a little of that race love after the fact

My finish line picture.  I've never been sick while running.  I felt more awful than I can remember.  My time sucked, I didn't hit a single goal but I got HERE

My finish line picture. I’ve never been sick while running until this race. I felt more awful than I can remember and it lasted 3 more days. My time sucked, I didn’t hit a single goal but I got HERE

Josie.  Race Director Extraordinaire.  Looks like I'm going to carry her away!!  Not a bad idea actually

Josie. Race Director Extraordinaire. Looks like I’m going to carry her away!! Not a bad idea actually

One of my kids  best friends.  Her mom was running and I saw Carissa at the finish.  SO nice to see a friendly face from home!

One of my kids best friends. Her mom was running and I saw Carissa at the finish. SO nice to see a friendly face from home!

There were several families we knew from Reno.  Olivia picked me up at the finish line and found a family we knew.  Naturally she absconded with their baby.

There were several families we knew from Reno at the race. Olivia picked me up at the finish line and found a family we knew. Naturally she absconded with their baby.

I didn't think seeing a goat was a big deal since they have a petting zoo.  However this one escaped from a local farm and was chasing runners miles 5-7.  Doesn't everyone have goats in their races???

I didn’t think seeing a goat was a big deal since they have a petting zoo. However this one escaped from a local farm and was chasing runners miles 5-7. Doesn’t everyone have goats in their races???

I just wanted to stand next to Olivia so her shirt pointed to me

I just wanted to stand next to Olivia so her shirt pointed to me

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Loved this staircase in the restaurant we ate our post race lunch at. Twinkle lights are my fave!!

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When something not good happens, Bri always says it’s “poops”. Also, she asks me “why does your face look poops today?? What’s going on”. NO POOPS BRI!!!  This sign was on the door of a business

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My girls freaking rock!!

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Orange you glad I took this picture of Alana???

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Ashlea collects smiley faces. This was the night light in the cabin bathroom where we stayed

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Showered, dressed and hanging out pre Luau

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Flowers by the side of the road

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More flowers by the side of the road

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Most awesome crank cash register ever!!!!

Me running up to my kids aid station.  I love this shot.  It shows how pristine and beautiful the area is.  In my mind, I'm there.....

Me running up to my kids aid station. I love this shot. It shows how pristine and beautiful the area is. In my mind, I’m there…..

 

 

Identity Theft

You probably read that title and thought I was going to be serious. Pffft… That’s a good one!  At any rate, there are periods in time when we personally go through what could be perhaps a mini crisis.  I’m not talking about being my age (42) and dating a 23 year old, buying a convertible and taking scuba lessons in a speedo.  Not that there’s anything wrong with that. (OK, yes there is….. )

Me feeling frumpy

Me feeling blech.  That’s a real word even though it’s underlined as incorrect.

I’ve been feeling, well, frumpy.  Un-sexy.  A little blah.  Not in my self-esteem or confidence, not in the way I dress or act.  I’m still me, but on the inside I was just ready for a change.  Moving, added job, added training.  More everything made me feel a little off.  Since I’m a woman this generally means a couple things will happen.  Shopping.  I can’t afford to go crazy, but I did fill in the gaps a little.  There’s no such thing as too much BodyRock Sport!!  Makeup.  I do my makeup the same pretty much since the dawn of freaking time.  But I got rid of some crap and added a new lipstick.  Of course.  Shoes.  I had a list of shoes I’d gotten rid of a few months ago because – quite frankly – if you’re trying to save them with shoe goo and super glue it’s time to send them on their way.  It was dumb luck that I finally found a couple of them.  I’ve been on a crusade for a few months now.  Hair.  Well, this is one of my specialties.  I regularly tell people to “just go for it!” but I’m a closet chicken.  A couple weeks ago my daughter Kezia wanted her head shaved.  While looking at pictures for her I found one I loved……  That got me thinking.  Why not???

Kezia.  Head shaved all the way around and fun on the top.

Kezia. Head shaved all the way around and fun on the top.

Pink.  My favorite bad girl.  I want to BE this woman some days.

Pink. My favorite bad girl. I want to BE this woman some days.  For now, I think I’d like her haircut???

So I showed my coworkers who instantly wanted to do it RIGHT NOW.  I panicked.  I texted some male clients.  2 of them in their 20’s and very GQ, a couple married men, my best male friend. Then I posted on Facebook which should be everyone’s decision making guide.  (what??).  I expected this:  “Long, blonde hair is sexy.  It’s your identity.  All models have long hair.  Don’t change.  I have fantasies about your hair.”  Well, sort of that’s what I expected.  What did I hear???  “DO IT!!!  That’s so brave!  Short hair is so sexy!!  You’d look great!  Worst case, you grow it!  I can’t wait to see it!  I wish I had the guts!”  Seriously???  WHO KNEW?????  So I googled pictures of women I admire and think are totally hot other than Pink.

With a sick stomach, one of my coworkers who’s an amazing hairdresser sat me in her chair….

DO NOT PANIC, DO NOT PANIC.....

DO NOT PANIC, DO NOT PANIC…..

After.  We decided to keep it a little longer so I could see what I thought.....

After. We decided to keep it a little longer so I could see what I thought…..

Feeling a little spunky

Feeling a little spunky

But it wasn’t THERE yet…..  I’m more of a “go big or go home” girl.  It was too puffy, too long to be spiky with, not quite right….  So I texted my hairdresser colleague and told her.  “We need to go shorter.”  I was booked for the next day.  At this point I was ready.  No fear, no trepidation.  It IS just hair.  It WILL grow.  I AM brave. And I couldn’t wait until that appointment.

My 14 year old son,Taylor (who is a stud in his own right) told me I looked like Mystique from XMen except not with red hair.  Holy.  Cow.

I'll take it......

I’ll take it……Creepy??  A little. Sexy??  Indeed.  I need this outfit now…

Also, one of my besties from my running team – Melissa – wrote that she chopped her hair.  “I feel amazing and so damn sexy now.  I think I even seem more confident!  It’s amazing! It’s as if a weight was lifted off my shoulders.  Best decision I have made in years.  And girl, you have the same attitude as I do.  Sassy and you know it!”.  We exchanged the picture we went off of and it was the same picture.  We’re probably twins from another mother.

Melissa's before and after!!!

Melissa’s before and after!!!

Kezia went even shorter and more spunky!!

Kezia went even shorter and more spunky!!

I became even more brave.  I was actually excited.  Think of how much more aerodynamic I’ll be running!!!

After cut #2

After cut #2.  I don’t look like Pink or any of the other famous women with short hair, but I feel spunky.  Showering is easy, styling is nearly non-existent.

Me hanging out after work and a haircut. Just do it.  Whatever it is.

Me hanging out after work and a haircut. Just do it. Whatever it is.

I Might DIe On The Track

I think our coach is trying to kill us. There. I said it. Last week at track, my workout was less since I had a “big race” the next weekend. But even my workout was hard. I watched my teammates run their workout and was SO glad I had a race!!  Now I have a vehicle in the shop so there aren’t enough cars for the kids activity and my track workout.  Missing a workout means it’ll just hurt more next time…..

Kezia rocking her personality

Kezia rocking her personality

Alana came and ran the track workout with my bestie Dianna

Alana came and ran the track workout with my bestie Dianna

ME

ME

Gabrielle being her silly self

Gabrielle being her silly self

Sam and me being serious

Sam and me being serious

Ashlea!!!

Ashlea!!!

Samuel

Samuel

ME!!

ME!!  I love you and I look possessed. Sounds like a track workout!

Taylorsville

My 14 year old son, Taylor, obviously (and rightfully) assumed they named the town of Taylorsville after him.  “Of course!” I replied.  “You’re that awesome!”  Which is a statement of fact.  In my unbiased opinion.  So naturally we had to take pictures of “his” town.  He’s ready for the takeover so we should be moving soon…..  My thoughts go out to everyone in Taylorsville and the surrounding area.  The day after my race, lightening struck causing 20 fires, some of which looked extremely disastrous.  We hope all is well.

Taylor would like to welcome you to his town....

Taylor would like to welcome you to his town….

We just upped the population by....  Well, we pretty much doubled it!!

We just upped the population by…. Well, we pretty much doubled it!!

Fire department, flour mill, blacksmith and museum in a one stop shop.  How sweet is that??!!

Fire department, flour mill, blacksmith and museum in a one stop shop. How sweet is that??!!

He accepts volunteer applications.

He accepts volunteer applications.