Monday, February 28, 2011

You get all this in just one post

Running:

My week off turned into two. It was somewhat unintentional. I had been looking forward to my long Sunday run but it was wicked cold so I chickened out. Why yes, I did feel like a major lame-o since my friends were running a marathon relay that day and had no choice about the wicked cold. But, I made cookies with Nana and the Princess instead. The next day should have been a treadmill day but we were out and about and was distracted by the results of Chewie's hearing test (see below) and playing Words with Friends with both SkyWalker and Nana that it wasn't until bedtime that I realized that the ENTIRE day had flashed by without a run. I pretty much knew the rest of the week was shot. We had a ginormous amount of fun with our friends resulting in naps being thrown off schedule and thus runs not being, um, run. But it was all worth it.

I got back on the treadmill on Friday with an easy run and then hit the road yesterday for my long run. I've been slowly building up my distance and planned on running 5.5 miles. But then I thought that I would plot out the 6.2 miles and if I wound up running 5.5 and walking the rest that would be fine, but at least I'd know how far I'd have to go to get the 6.2 (10K). I ran nonstop for 5.2 miles putting me at the bottom of the Hill. I stopped for roughly 30 seconds (stopped the watch and didn't move) and gathered myself. Then I started the trek up the hill. I was pretty wiped after already running 5.2 and in case I haven't mentioned it, this hill is, well, a HILL. I went up the first section which turned out to be .10 of a mile. I stopped for 10 seconds. I repeated that two more times until I was at the top of the hill. And then I just ran all the way home. I needed to go past my house just a smidge so I could get the full 6.2. I did it all about 3 minutes faster than the last time I attempted it. The last time I walked and I didn't go near the hill. So I'd say I did much better considering the slowness up the hill!

I'm glad I ended February on a high note, since I did about half the miles that I did in January--only 26.8 miles. Well, it is the shortest month.

******
Chewie:

At Chewie's 18 month checkup we started the early intervention process for speech. She wound up not qualifying because she communicated just enough, but she is delayed. She needs to improve by the time she's 2 or we'll have to do the whole thing again. Part of it was a hearing test. Her first was in January and she failed. She had a cold and they said the results were consistent with people who have colds so we didn't worry and just rescheduled another one for 4 weeks later. She had no runny nose so I sent her off with Vader and didn't give it a second thought. She failed again. Although she had no outward symptoms she had congestion or fluid in her ears. So she's on a steroid nose spray (the same one SkyWalker was one for his allergies) and hopefully that will help the fluid drain through her nose. We have an appointment with an ENT for the end of March and if it hasn't drained by then she'll most likely need to get tubes in her ears. And then we'll have to do another hearing test. Hopefully she'll pass that one and start talking soon. Not that I really want her to talk because the Princess DOES NOT STOP, but I'd like her to have the ability to talk.

*******
Blathering:

My alarm went off at 5:30 this morning and I did the daily debate of "I should get up but I'm not in the mood to physically move my body." At 6:20 I heard SkyWalker tell his father that I forgot to make his lunch! Argh. I jumped out of bed and he was right. Vader was making his lunch but I stayed up. It was lovely. I was going to run but my neck is in serious hurting mode, most likely from that damn hill yesterday. But I'm hoping that being up early today will help me fall asleep early tonight and get me back into that routine. If I could run before the kids even get up... oy.... and then have naptime to do THINGS! Oh the joy.
*******
Poetry:

Today's trek down memory lane is my most successful poem. Published 5 times according to a resume I found in the box.

The Hands

Why do I remember them?
Only the hands,
Once capable and quick,
Now slow and unsteady.
The hands.
I don't remember
the eyes or the voice.
But I remember
Those old, dying hands.
God, how they look like
mine.

Saturday, February 26, 2011

Why we love DK

As a children's/teen librarian I always liked DK books. In particular, the nonfiction books are always very visual and kid friendly. I bought SkyWalker his first DK encyclopedia when he was very young. I followed that up with another one this past Christmas.

Facebook has a lot of problems but the one thing it does really well is what it was actually created to do--keep people in touch who would otherwise not be connected because of distance. I discovered through facebook that a high school friend of mine worked for DK. Since SkyWalker enjoys the encyclopedias as much as we do (he and Vader read a section each night) I told him that I knew someone who worked for DK. He and the Princess were impressed and scoured their DK books looking for her name. I mentioned this to her through facebook. Her response? Have each of them pick 5 books from the website. For FREE.

WHAT? FREE DK books?? We eagerly inspected the DK website. SkyWalker chose another of encyclopedia and some Star Wars readers. The Princess chose some princess books and fairie encyclopedias. We were giddy! It was like Christmas all over again.

She also said to never buy a DK book again, that she would be my source... but you know what I did right? I bought SkyWalker a DK dictionary soon after. While we love free books, we love DK more and in this publishing world we need to support them! I just want to publicly thank Rachel Kempster and DK for helping to feed our addiction.

Friday, February 25, 2011

Get ready

Oh, get ready.


Jack Kerouac Lives *

"I am God"
he wrote.
If you are God,
then surely
I am a Goddess.

* "I am God" taken from "Poem" in Pomes all Sizes by Jack Kerouac.

***
I love it so much, I can't even tell you. I *really* needed to attribute "I am God" to Kerouac? Like they were going to find this and claim I infringed on his copyright of that statement, that obviously no one else ever said. HAHA. I love it.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Writing

I was looking for, something, ah, my old Wonder Woman datebook cover, when I came across a box containing all my old high school poetry. Rather than keep them locked up I thought I would share them, if for no other reason than to laugh (although some of these were actually PUBLISHED in small presses and were responsible for me winning awards and scholarships). These poems are TWENTY years old. TWENTY. Muse on that one, man.

Here is your first installment:

Writing

Writing is
like the wind,
lifting my soul.
Carrying me to
the safe utopia
in the dark abyss
of my mind;
Grasping my hand:
an anxious mother;
Hovering over me with eagle eyes:
an over-protective father;
Yet, letting me be free
letting me be me.
Writing is like the wind.

Saturday, February 19, 2011

And vacation is off to a fine start

I meant to clean the kitchen yesterday. I should have.

We woke up late--again--and immediately after breakfast I cleaned the upstairs bathroom. Then I started on the kitchen. I did the stove and the sink but not much else since we still needed to have lunch. I told the jedi that I was cleaning up and to not make any big messes. Ha. They took all of the stools and chairs and made a fort over by the dinner table. Okay. I let it go. SkyWalker has been learning about money so he had a bunch of coins under the table. Okay. When I finished the stove & sink I decided I would take a shower. I put the dogs outside and told SkyWalker he was in charge. What could go wrong?

I came out and discovered that they had moved on from coins and had all of their dollars on the floor too. It tiny pieces. SkyWalker blamed Chewie but I reminded him that he was in charge and she would not have gotten them to rip up if he had not left them in her reach. I told him to start cleaning everything up before we had lunch. The Princess let it slip that they ALL ripped up the dollars. 8 dollar bills. EIGHT. I managed to tape most of them up but I have no idea if they are still legal tender or not. I told them they were not eating lunch until they cleaned everything up--picked up all the loose change on the floor, returned toys to the living room, returned stools and chairs to their proper place and fixed the table cloth they pulled off. SkyWalker started picking up the coins, Chewie dumped them out again, SkyWalker started crying about how he had already cleaned up and he cleans up everything, blah blah blah. He and the Princess turned on each other and blamed the other one for going to slow. My absolute favorite part was when he dramatically said that if she didn't clean up faster he was going to be dead from not eating lunch. She reassured him that he wasn't "EVER going to get dead from not eating lunch." He had an absolute hissy fit when I told him to fix the tablecloth because he didn't know how to do that. I explained for the millionth time that if he doesn't know how to fix something/clean something up that he shouldn't make the mess to begin with.

Nana will be here in a little over an hour. The children are upstairs. Vader is at BJs, actually he's probably playing at Guitar Center. I told them that when naptime was over we would be starting a new day. No arguing, no yelling, just happy listening. Anyone want to bet how well it goes? I've got $8...

Friday, February 18, 2011

Getting it done

I wanted to post about the great 5 1/2 mile run I did last weekend... but it never happened. I started on Sunday but it was so cold, so much colder than I thought, that I turned around to come home. I thought I'd get back outside later in the day when temps warmed up... but it never happened.

Then Monday I, once again, lost track of time having a fun-filled morning with my friends and by the time we were home I knew there was no run in my future.

Instead of beating myself up about it, I am A) wicked proud that out of this entire snowy cold winter I have only missed TWO outside runs. Only 2! I thought for sure I would be done running outside by December at the latest and that was before I knew it would be the snowiest coldest winter EVER. So the fact that I only missed 2 runs? Is wicked awesome. And B) I decided to take THE WHOLE WEEK off. There is such a difference between not being able to run and choosing not to (for a brief period of time). I think the break will be good for my ankles. I'm already really looking forward to getting out there on Sunday for my long run.

Because I chose not to run all week, I also chose not to write or do any of my normal regular chores (besides the mandatory cooking, dishes & laundry). I dedicated this week to getting all of those pain in the neck tasks done that I never have time for. The ones that eat away at my brain while I am running and writing and trying to keep my head above water. I cleaned out my car (basically straightened it up, I didn't vacuum it), cleaned out the entire fridge, cleaned my toilet and mopped my bathroom floor (it's the one never seen by other people so it's always neglected), and transferred pictures and videos from SD cards to the computer. I still need to clean the stove & sink and the upstairs bathroom, but I'm feeling pretty good about what I've gotten done. So much of what I do each week are things that I do EACH WEEK. I am never done with laundry or dishes. I never have a feeling of accomplishment of "that's done." But I don't clean out the fridge every week that's for sure...  I make my lists so I can cross off laundry when it's done for the day, but it's not quite the same as feeling like I've actually made a difference.

Next week I return to my regularly scheduled activities with a clear head and renewed motivation... or will attempt to with kiddies home from school.

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

Why I don't sleep

All of my children sleep through the night and have done so for a long LONG time. And yet I am still exhausted each morning. My sleep is always interrupted:

video

This happens all night long. This is actually pretty tame to what it's like in the middle of the night. Usually it sounds like an emphysema patient is sleeping with us.

Friday, February 4, 2011

The Darkness

We live in darkness
Blissfully blind
Unaware of what's lurking
in the shadows
Until the Sun
The Sun
with its pompous
self-righteousness
Its rays glaring
and exposing
every crumb and dust particle on my floors.

What? Did you think I was getting a little high-brow with the blog?? Nah.

But seriously? You know what I'm talking about. That time of day when the sun shines through the window the strongest and just highlights EVERYTHING that you have not done. Even if you just swept yesterday, there's a new pile of dust and dog hair and cracker crumbs.

I have chosen not to run during today's nap time (which has yet to occur since Chewie is crawling around her crib and the other 2 are running from room to room) and will hopefully get it done after bedtime. I had to take control of the house. Dishes, the kitchen sink, crumbs. I still have all the kids' laundry to fold. From 2 days ago.

Balance would be so much easier to attain if the children and dogs would stop contaminating my house and just stay in the bubble wrap.

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Actual conversation with the Princess

just moments ago.

The Princess: "When I'm a mom can I take care of [Chewie]? And when you're still a mom can you get a new baby? Can you ask someone for one?"

Me: "Who should I ask for a new baby?"

P: "Whoever you want to. Just don't get a boy baby."

Me: "Why not a boy baby?"

P: "Because all the boy babies spit all over."

Me: "Girl babies spit up too."

P: "Hannah doesn't."

M: "She did when she was a baby. So did you and Chewie."

P: "No, we didn't spit up. Well, just one day we spit. And then the next day and the next day and then lots of days."

And then she was done with the conversation and walked away.

50 miles

My ideal running routine is Sunday, Monday, Wednesday and Friday. I've been trying to run a little longer which means starting a little earlier which means being home. Tuesday and Thursday we don't get home from preschool until 12 and then we eat lunch and then we argue about nap/quiet time so I decided to have those days be my "other" days. I did a good long run (for me) on Sunday and planned on taking it easy yesterday. We went to a playdate in the morning and then had lunch with our friends. I had NO concept of what time it was. It was just... such a lovely morning that I didn't even think about time. When we left Panera it was already after 1. If I'm going to be on the treadmill for 45 minutes and then shower, the latest I can start is 1 to be out in time to wait for the bus at 2:40. Eeps. But I had already decided I was going to keep it easy so I thought maybe I could still squeeze it in. Then Chewie fell asleep in the car. We got home and it was clear there would be no immediate nap. I sighed, did the dishes, decided to wait until SkyWalker got home and run. I got the girls upstairs at 2. Chewie did not even attempt to fall asleep. She wasn't crying so I just left her there. SkyWalker and I walked in the house at 2:45, the Princess came down the stairs, Chewie was still awake and I thought for sure my run was doomed. I had to help SkyWalker with his math homework. I did a little HTML work on the blog (I added a label cloud over on the side) and then Chewie fell asleep at 4 pm! SkyWalker and the Princess were watching Cyberchase on the computer and I said "should I run now??". I really didn't want to wait until bedtime because I'm so wiped out by the end of the day. But I really wanted to run. While doing my HTML work I had noticed my running stats... I was only 1.1 miles away from 50 miles for the month! The Princess told me to go ahead and run (that's what she said  "Go, go ahead and run.") so I put the dogs in the bedroom, hopped on the treadmill and did an easy 1.25 miles before I had to make dinner.

Just so I could say that I ran 50 miles in January. I ran 17 days. That's not bad! If I did that every month I'd get 600 miles for the year, twice as much as last year. But I'm fairly certain that I won't be able to do 50 miles each month.