Sunday, August 10, 2008

Pooh Corner

Oooh boy. I am home a few short minutes from a run with Stephanie. Although we did not do our "usual" run ie: I did not torture Stephanie with the route we run ALL THE TIME; it was a fabulous run nonetheless. As it turns out, it is probably better that we ran on neutral ground with little familiarity. That would have been a lot harder.

We have had the best runs together, and some not so great runs. The "hobble gobble" goes down as an epic run. Steph and I decided to run Thanksgiving morning after working night shift. Now, some of you may think running is wacky, and night shift wackier, and the combo inconceivable. Hopefully most of you will see the complete clarity of it all. Anyway, midway of our run we saw a chicken meandering around the lawn of a very beautiful home. That struck us as very hilarious and thought that of all things, the chicken was having the best day of everyone! It was all crazy from then on. There was also the runs in the extreme weather-stepping into near waist deep puddles along Knott street (so we decided to not run Knott), late evenings, wind, sun, even snow and ice. I would run in any condition to run with Stephanie. Today was one of those days that I did not want the run to end. Usually I get to the point of being tired, hot, thirsty, etc. but today I could have run all day just to be running with Stephanie.

Love all around

Guten Morgen! We are wrapping up our stateside blog today....well, I will still keep my little blog babies if possible. If not it will be a rather boring and underutilized blog!

So far most of us have been holding things together pretty well. We thought we would already be overseas by this time so this week was a little bit of a bonus, a little bit of a string a long.

The kids have missed the Oak street house so much-I did not realize how much stability that house had for us all. It was such a great place to live and it really opened many doors for us. During the brief application/waiting time for our next adventure we also looked at many houses in the area and got a good feel for what we wanted. Lucky for us, though we could stop our real estate hunt! Moving out of that house was sad and a bit cumbersome (we had to find a place to live for 4 weeks) but it panned out and we got to live in yet another great house....conveniently located near Provence bakery and stumptown coffee. Pretty sweet deal!

Chloe got to attend "Girls Empowerment" camp this past week and learned how to reconstruct clothes, make bags, 'zines, and a bunch of other stuff. So cute and so fun. Who knew you could make a skirt out of a tank top?! Not many can pull that look of for sure.

What can I say without sounding or getting mushy? Not much. We have all been holding it together well (even during Mama Mia! )


Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Rinse, Wash, Repeat

Ha! Egg on my face! I had been waxing poetic (my term for the day) about the pending move and forming a nice little romantic post only to realize I had already done this. So here is my list of things that are refreshing to me at the moment.

The batch of chocolate chip cookies! Bless premade dough and a cookie sheet not in a box yet!
Pitching bath towels and starting over with new ones that match (likely white ones)
My boiling water for tea.
The pending arrival of Chloe after a 3 day Disneyland trip.
My baggie containing an Obama and Hillary pin.
Bubble wrap and the sound of packing tape stretching across a box
Checks on my to-do list.
The new playlist I found! Got me through packing the kitchen. So did the glass of wine from Lisa the neighbor.

We are still not finalized in our living arrangement but feel like we are capable of solving that minor major issue! On one hand it is a very unsettling, but it does not do anyone a service to freak out or run in circles. I feel as though packing is the priority and getting that taken care of, then we can put ourselves some place. It almost feels.......daring!

Saturday, June 21, 2008

Know When to Hold 'em

Well, not like hold 'em hostage, but when you just have to stop everything and HOLD them. Sigh, so much to do, so little time and all the peanut wants is to be held! It took all of 10 minutes for him to be schnockered out, so it was well worth the time and lack of energy on my part! Now, of course, I am in a bit of a pickle with him campered in my lap. Oh well!

At this point, we have no place to call home as of, say, July 11th! We are crossing our fingers we can stay here through July, but have to plan as if we were without home. This is not new news, just imminent news! We have known for 12 months that we would only be here 'til summer. Today was official packing day numero uno, which means: the weeding of stuff began, the arguments over personal belongings, and the discoveries of random bits and pieces of our individual lives. I am excited to say that there will be a second, yes second garage sale! We had one last weekend as part of the neighborhood annual g-sale event. I am thinking we will do a short little ditty this time, maybe something in the range of 8a-12p. Short and sweet!

Wish us luck!

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Oregonian-you bore me

Imagine my dismay when, today-which is Tuesday-I opened the Sunday paper and there was a huge missing piece. Chelsea Cain, where are you? Every Sunday (or Tuesday for that matter) I look forward to reading you. See, I kind of have an author crush on you. I feel abandoned and lost without your for this week. Please, please please show up in print next weekend. If not, it may be the icing on top that makes me cancel my subscription and switch to the NY Times.

Friday, June 6, 2008

May Accomplished

Whew. The month of May had several things requiring planning and attention to detail. My catastrophic thinking was really in full gear. I was sure, just sure, something dreadful would happen. To most reasonable, calm people (everyone but me) my list is not daunting. But to me? Bring on the Chamomile and Lavender tea ("eases tension, stress, and nervous stomach"). Ambien or Xanax might have been nice, but tea sufficed. In very particular order, I completed a marathon, threw Chloe a tea party, had Jake's birthday, hosted a wedding shower, organized a Brownie troop gathering, started working the Farmer's market, and saw Chloe go off to a Brownie camp overnighter. During all this, we had a few open houses to boot!

The marathon was an adventure. I ended up doing my long runs solo for about 8 weeks. For many, I would piece together meeting people along the way to keep me company. I was super lucky to have willing friends to run anywhere from 6-10miles during my 22milers. The bonus run was meeting up for a bookclub brunch immediately following an epic long one. Anyway, on my mom's birthday, we headed for Eugene with a car packed with 3 children and gear. Nathan had soccer tryouts so he and Brian held the fort down here in P-town. We missed them! I was still in catastrophy mode so really tried to be calm and pratical about driving, dining out, and walking. It was a challenge, but man oh man is it easier to be "normal!" We had a lovely birthday dinner and then took the kids to the hotel swimming pool. Beck was fearless in the water. I'll leave it at that. Saturday morning we went to the marathon expo and pancake breakfast. It should have been named Sausage Feed, as the kids pretty much ate sausage and syrup. I overpurchased gu's, powerbars, e-caps, and clif blocks, but wanted to have many an option come raceday!

That evening we went to one of my bff's house for dinner. What a lifesaver. Sandy literally had our entire group (8 of us) over. We had pasta (suprise) and after everyone was sufficently wine and beer'd up (excluding me, though!) enlisted Sandy and my dad to cut my hair. Prerace tradition.

Saturday morning was perfect conditions. Cool and clear. Pete, Matt, Jake, and I headed for hayward field by 6am. I was really trying hard not to cry out of fear of lonliness on the run. So many what ifs! It was strange to do a race on my own. Usually I am in with someone, either as *their* person, or as a buddy, but not on this day. I had to call my mom back at the hotel right before the start and of course was crying on the phone. That's good prerace anaerobic warmup! I also got a nice text from my daily running buddies (all three!) I spoke with nice lady at the start and she was very calming to me. Before we knew it, we were off and running. The run started next to Hayward Field and meandered through many a neighborhood. The first mile was a bit uphill, or at least it felt like it! I knew things were going to be okay when I heard ABBA's Dancing Queen blaring from a boombox within the first mile! Ahhh, off to a good start. I was running alongside a scissorbill with a 3:45 on his back-hmmm, was a he a pacer or a nut? After sticking with him, he started acting crazy and running here and there. Nut. Around mile 3 or four, I heard another great song that I love so felt pretty darn good. My pace was ahead of, well, ahead of what I would expect. I did not have a pace or time goal so was thrilled to be feeling good at a sub 3:45pace. My focus was to keep my breathing in check, not freak out, and enjoy seeing my peeps at mile 9. Thankful for technology, I had to make a quick call to my mom, as my water bottle from my rambo pack leaked and my shorts were starting to be really wet. The nethers were going to be cold soon. However, I missed them at mile 9 and they had to beat cheeks to get to the halfway point! I swear we ran by Autzen Stadium half a dozen times. It was so frustrating to be all over that place, yet never get real close! Sara Sitter was spectating! yay! After going across the river, around Autzen a bazillion times, and through MORE neighborhoods, I found myself in the same stride as another "lost soul." Turns out Julie and I were both running without our running/training partners so we glommed onto each other. I had a moment of stress as I didn't want to slow her down, but she kept me going. She's a rockstar. So we ran and ran from mile 14 on. Pete joined in at mile 17 and he kept us totally entertained. I have to say, that not once did I stop running. That is very unusual for me. I love to stop and take a walking break, or tie my shoe, or stretch. Yup, not once. I did accidentally steal someone else's gleukos drink, though and will forever be sorry to one Martina who didn't get her drink! Around mile 23 Sandy and her cute family were watching and it was a thrill to know we were so close and that I had made it that far. Julie and I were counting the half miles down as we went through a park and crossed the river two more times. Did you know that when you cross a river you have to go a bit uphill? oh my god, seriously, it hurts! Our last crossing took us straight to....Autzen Stadium! Pete was a love and took my water bottle rambo pack. Voila! I felt so light that I kind of took off running. I was so ready to be done. As soon as I crossed that finish line I decided that I really did not need to move much more. Julie and I hugged and went with our respective families. It felt way faster than my time showed, but to have arrived, run, and finished without any major incidences was a success for me. Major May event completed.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A Long and Winding Road

Remember when you were a child and something fun or exciting was on the horizon? A vacation, birthday party, or even getting new shoes. The time seemed to go by so slow and it was all you could think about. Sleeping was impossible, and the parents were easily worn out of the twitter. I fondly remember one summer evening in 1977. It was the night before a family adventure, my best friend Laurie was spending the night, and we had on new summer nighties that matched. We could barely contain ourselves so my parents took us for a nighttime drive in the green and white convertible Karmann ghia. The night smelled fresh, the crickets were chirping, and the sky was clear, dark, and twinkling with the August celestials. Laurie and I tilted our heads up and let the soft wind dance across our faces and weave through our hair. The moment took us away to far away places. For half an hour, our hearts and souls belonged to that sultry August night.

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Accepting Ourselves

Why, oh why do I have some tendencies that repeat themselves even after complete denial? I am taking to step to accept my tendencies as part of my "character." Black sweaters, white cotton, European kid shoes.....
Yesterday I was combing various places for china tea-cups/saucers for a teaparty. En route to the back of the "big" Goodwill (which is relatively clean) I find myself staring at 3 black Banana Republic sweaters. One was a merino wool turtleneck, one was a cardigan, and the other was a cute longsleeve t-style. Do I need them? noooo, I don't. They were even the wrong size but I fell in love. Tags attached and everything. Luckily I went through a 12 step over it and walked on. It was so natural to stop and look! I firmly believe that there are things in our lives that we seek comfort in....the familiarity of an item. For me, I could have an entire closet of black shirts-long sleeve, short sleeve, turtleneck, crew neck (no v-necks, I don't care for them as much) tunic style, sleeveless, thick, paper thin, and so on. I do not tire of them. In fact, I have a lone red 3/4 length sleeved top in my closet. I rarely wear it. Too bold.....not really, but it stands out too much. I've worn it only a small handful of times. I prefer my black tops. Same goes for white. That could be my second row in the closet. So there, I am no longer going to deny the fact that one cannot have too many black or white items in the closet. I feel better already.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Faster Than the Speed of Light

aka "Thank you for feeding into my PMS, Tri-Met Bus Driver."
Dear hairy driver of bus #75, thank you so much for the 10seconds of anger, followed by a passivist version of a car chase. Seriously, when you blew by me and went through the red light, just to get ahead of ALL the cars lined up did you feel better? Did your boy parts, which are obviously inadequate, get the charge they needed? Well mister, I got a charge too. The way you did that move, which was stupid, made my PMS surface. I had kept it in check all day. ALL DAY! Thankfully I did not have my foot riding the gas pedal, ready to take off, because we would have skimmed each other. Knowing the company you work for, your hind end would have been off scott free and you know this. You most likely did not notice that I continued to follow you...wait, all 22 cars were forced to follow you because you stop about every block......just to find the opportunity to give you the bird. Now, I tell you that I feel quite adequate about myself but it would have really been satisfying to give you mama stink-eye with a nice, firm bird. Lucky for you there was an equally annoying mini-van driving so slow, that getting anywhere near your little driver window was slim so I could only send you muddy mama mojo. I hope you felt it as you drove your bus along the line. In fact, you have a really outdated advertisement on the side of that bus. So there Mister Hairy Bus Driver.

p.s. Mister Hairy Bus Driver, you are also lucky because I know someone that rides that line and she may pay her fare in pennies real soon. REAL SOON, pal.

I am ducking and running now, there is a hershey bar with almonds in the freezer.

Saturday, March 29, 2008

Book Club

It has been a long while since experiencing the "ideal" Saturday. Really, what makes an ideal day is so different for everyone. For some, sleeping in is ideal and for others shopping or watching movies all day. No matter what, we all should have a day that makes you flutter with happiness.
My day began simple enough but I knew I might have a real adventure on my hands. I wanted to do a long run and had a time frame to follow. Up early, I met one of my running buddies for loop number one. After she was done I roped Brian into beginning loop two and picked up another friend along the way. She ran with me for a bit then I was on my own. Af first I was leary of the road ahead, but found the peace and quiet a welcome reprive from my long week. Of course I wrote many a blog entries (which have yet been entered, let alone remembered!), replanned my closet, wrote a mental letter to the school district and so on. Trekking back I was anxious to shower and head to book club. Coffee was calling my name.
After parking in front of the cutest house ever, I swiftly made my way to the front door. Quick hugs and hellos then a mug of hot coffee was all I needed to relax and look forward to the next few hours. We discussed The Memory Keepers Daughter. A very thought provoking, yet predictable book. I really enjoyed this book, as it brought a feeling of peace while reading it. It was as if the author intended her readers to take a calming breath and read nice and slow, absorbing the words as the story unfolded. The group was split on the likability of the book.
We savored an onion galette, a fritatta, fresh fruit, scones, crepes, coffee, and of course chocolate and mimosas. It was decadent to say the least. After a 3+hour jaunt outside in the morning, the breakfest and relaxation was all I needed to feel refreshed. It was, in my book, a perfect day.

Monday, March 10, 2008

Women in History

Last Friday was the Women in History day at the elementary school. My friend Ruth and I were the Pankhurst Sisters. I was Christabel and Ruth was Sylvia. We were suffregettes. The day started with an all school assembly followed by classroom visits ALL DAY! There was a nice group of women portraying amazing women in history. We each had to give a 2 minute speech in front of the school......sounds short but it feels long! Ruth and I decided that we had to speak with a British accent for the speech and the classroom presentations. Wow. What a day. My head has cleared quite a bit in the short amount of time following, but it was such a fun and rewarding day coordinated by a really nice woman. The kids at the school were very polite and asked great questions. Kids are truly clever and smart. Ta-ta, pip-pip, cheerio!

Monday, January 28, 2008

Trade Offs

Things That Are More Tolerable After a Few Glasses of Wine

Men's Ice Skating
4 Children, 4 Ice Cream Cones
The Boogey Man, aka: heavy wind making things bang against the window
Other people's travel plans (ie, spouse gallivanting over Italy)
Lillian Vernon catalog
Looking at the school hot lunch calendar
Fox News
Make Me A Supermodel

Friday, January 18, 2008

Eat YOur Heart Out Julie Andrews

These are a few of My Favorite Things (in no particular order)

1) Butter and Cinnamon.
This really is a good combo, especially in the warm form: toast, snickerdoodles.

2)Choice Organic Spearmint and Chammomile Tea.
I buy a box a month and try to limit myself to one cuppa night. I am convinced that I am incapable of a good nights sleep without it. Not that I get a good night sleep anyway, but just imagine how much worse it *would* be.

3) My three seasonal (winter) themed mugs to have above mentioned beverage. I don't share
these, either.

4) Sharepened Dixon Ticonderoga Pencils
Nothing makes a tidy "to-do" list or grocery list like a good ol' number 2.

5) Surf Laundry Detergent. Ocean scent.
Fact: In the throes of uber painful labor with Jake, I had to comment on how much I loved
the smell of his dad's shirt. Consecutive labors were supported with Surf scented shirts
and broad shoulders. Don't mess with the crazy preganant lady.

6) Sharpies. Black, medium point.
No comment. So obvious.

7) ZBeanz Ethiopion Yergacheffe coffee beans.
Fond memories of working the Hillsdale Farmers market and drinking 2-3 cups to keep warm.
This is the best coffee I have ever made, and because I am not known for actually making
coffee (but consuming mass quantities) this bag of goodness has converted me to homebrew.

8) Black.
Many of my favorite clothing items are black. Soft, cashmere-esce cardigan hoodie, running
coat, gloves, shoes, long sleeve t, tunic top, cami. Not many things can be both fancy and

9) Chocolate Chip Cookies.
So I have this theory that when you are feeling down, whether physically or mentally, a batch
of chocolate chip cookies will make you feel better. Seriously, during cold season (funny how
cold/sniffle season is year round. hmmmm) my kitchen aid mixer is on overdrive.

10) Trite VH1/Bravo/MTV shows: The Shot, America's most Smartest/Next Top Model,
Project Runway, Make Me a Supermodel.....
Perfect for nights waiting for Thanksgiving pies to finish baking, folding laundry, or laying in
bed with a cuppa or glass of wine realizing just how normal I really am.

11) My running route.
Same ol' same ol' but it's so there for me rain or shine. Plus I can think of important things
like who will get voted off The Shot and not get lost.

12) Baby Clothes
This ones a killer, because I would have a jillion babies simply for the baby clothes. Plus, how
lovely is it to wash an entire wardrobe in ONE load. ONE, I say!

13) Lipsticks and LipGloss
A girl can't have too many and it's instant pick me up.

14) Peonies.
I love these flowers.

15) Fruits and Veggies
Seriously, I love fruits and veggies. Crunch a munch a crunch a muncha. yum!

16) Family and Friends
Dorky to say, but I didn't want anyone to think I wasn't thinking about them.

17) Baby Joggers
Mama's prozac.

Well, there's my list for the day. I must go for now, as I have three loads of laundry to smell and fold, and jammies to put on, and a second cuppa to indulge with my chocolate chip cookie.