Friday, November 26, 2010

Staying the course

This photo is from Turkeyman Trot in Lansing, Michigan, my last and best 5k of the year but not my last race of the year. One more to run and that will complete my race a month goal for 2010. I'll end the year with a 5 mile race on New Year's day that will earn me the right to go to bed before midnight and miss the coming of 2011.

Truthfully, I've enjoyed running at least a race a month or maybe what I really liked was the selection process and anticipation of each run. I had one friend complete the challenge with me even though several of us started out in January with the same goal. It is easy to let life get in the way but with all the organized races now I'm not sure that there is a single weekend of the year where there is not a race within two hours of where I live and I live in the middle of nowhere.

I haven't set any goals yet for 2011 and this is the first time in a long time, if ever, that I have made a resolution and stuck with it. And although it sounds easy to run a race a month with the kind of year I had medically (torn hamstring, crappy lupus, back surgery, etc.) I'm very pleased that I have almost finished the journey. If necessary, I'll be crawling across the finish line on New Year's Eve unless I run a safety net race between now and then.

Sunday, November 21, 2010


"The smell of good bread baking, like the sound of lightly flowing water, is indescribable in its evocation of innocence and delight."
M. F. K. Fisher (1908-1992)

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Artist Soup

****I've been working intensely on clearing out the clutter in our house before Christmas strikes again. We aren't a "huge pile of gifts" type of family but even a few more things added to the contents of our already over-packed house may cause it to burst. Most items I can look at and give to the proper charity or the pile by the road with no problem but the it devastates me to toss the kids' artwork. I don't mean every little scribble that they put on paper while I'm making dinner but the more elaborate pieces, the
ones they really spent some time on. I'm learning to take photos of the pieces, then I gently fold them and push them into the proper bag. Here are two works by Gibson that were created in last year's art class with the most amazing first year art teacher. Unfortunately she went looking for greener pastures and found them in Colorado.

****Diezel baked a cake the other day and stated as he took it out of the oven, "Yeah, I'll be a chef if my first plan doesn't work out." His first plan is to be a Lego designer. He is the type of kid that as I am cooking he will walk by, pick up the lid and stir whatever is in there. He peels, chops and cracks without being asked and is always cooking up breakfast for himself and his dad. I was making beef soup in this photo and Diezel was learning how to cook pork sausage from one of our homegrown pigs. Fergie thought she would lend a hand and supervise the browning of the patties.

****One of the best things about this past year is that we are relying more and more on our own homegrown food and less on the mass produced food. We are a long way from where I would like to be but I'm making baby steps toward grocery store independence. Here is Diezel with a carrot that he went outside and picked for our beef soup.

Monday, November 8, 2010

Playing the lottery, again

It is difficult to believe that it has been an entire year since I attempted to gain a lottery entry into the New York City Marathon. And here I am again, not even stalling this time to debate whether or not it is a wise idea to put my name back in. My sister got in for 2010 and deferred in the hopes that I would get in for 2011 and we could go together. Visiting New York City has always been on my bucket list and what a better way to experience the city than to lace up my shoes and run through all the places I should see.

Trouble is, I'm not certain I can run 26.2 miles as well as I would like and I need to swallow that and keep on moving. My goal this year with running was to run a race each month and so far I'm on track with one month to go. But, it has been a struggle, not the registering and committing, but the actual getting out the door and on the road. My joints are worse than they were three years ago when I attempted my last marathon and my hips frequently suggest that a half marathon is all they have in them, if even that. I hate it. And I think the reason I despise it so much it that it all seems so out of my control. I follow my doctor's suggestions, I have rest days in my schedule, I do yoga faithfully and I have tried treatments that I never dreamed would be a part of my life. Nothing seems to make a substantial difference and there appears to be no end in sight.

Registering for the lottery again might be my way back in or it may be what it takes to humble me (As if my struggles this summer haven't done that!). I want a spot but I'm scared I'll get a spot. When I didn't get in last year I pondered doing the Chicago Marathon instead but stalled long enough that it filled up. Sometimes blessings don't appear to be blessings at the time. With a few injuries haunting me and my auto-immune issues sticking their nose in my face I'm grateful I didn't make the attempt this year. Finally, my hamstring is substantially better and my back doctor kicked butt on my surgery, now if I could only throw my pills to the wind.

If I get in I'll be there, no matter what. Securing a bib number and running NYC with my sister is a thought so wonderful that I have no words to describe it.

Thursday, November 4, 2010


Halloween 2010
(If I were smarter I would have gotten the Christmas photo done at the same time.)