Tuesday, July 31, 2007

Oh, how I miss my blog and bloggy friends!

what a neglectful blogger I have become. If my poor blog were a cat, she'd be sticking her paws under the door scratching and mewling frantically for someone to slide some sliced deli meat underneath and nourish her, or open the door and pet her scruffy unbrushed fur and show some affection for just a few minutes. Sigh. So sorry!

So much to catch up on, and so little time! Still working in NYC during the week. Tried to jam as much fun and family activities into three days at home as possible, and mostly succeeded. Saw "Transformers" AGAIN on Friday, then the Simpsons movie on Saturday and spent Sunday PM at the pool until the t-storms dumped on us. Enjoyed a lot of time with my boys, except for the hubby, who was off at a two-day class learning stuff for his job. But I did catch his hockey game Friday night, and we spent the time driving to and from the rink chatting and catching up with each other. It was a good weekend, albeit a short and somewhat manically rushed one.

I am 3 miles short of 100 for the month of July. That was after this morning's 4 miles around the north end of Central Park and then around the south side of the Jackie O reservoir. So I've made a running date with a co-worker of mine for later tonight, after a conference call we've got scheduled for a bit. He hasn't run in a while and was finally convinced to try it after hearing me and another colleague extol the virtues of the park as a fabulous place to catch a run. So once that's done, I'll have 100 miles in the books for the first time since February, I believe. I came close in March, with 93 miles, and even with all the travel to Colorado in April managed to slide in 85 miles, but May was dismal with only 38 miles (that was all the swimming and cycling workouts) and June rebounded a bit with 77 miles. But if I want to be at all prepared for White Rock in December, I need to start building up the running mileage again. And there's something mental about being so close to 100 and not getting it that will make me nutso if I don't get in the last three miles tonight. Yeah, but then again, I'm the person who once ran 2.5 miles on New Year's Eve to reach 1000 for the year. Nutso already, I guess!!

Gotta run, but I swear to come back more often than once a week here. Pinky promise!!!

UPDATE: I got the three miles done! We wrapped up our con-call by 8:40, and at 8:45, we hit the streets outside the hotel. My running partner has LONG legs, and is extremely athletic, even though he hasn't run regularly in a while. So I had to keep his skinny self in check so he didn't wipe me out entirely -- I had to remind him that 1) his stride is way longer than mine! 2) this was my 2nd run of the day, and 3) the first 3/4 mile to the park is UPhill. But it was a glorious evening, and when we hit the reservoir, we caught the last gleam of sunset behind the lit-up Manhattan skyline. Pretty damn impressive, I gotta tell you! And he was thoroughly hooked on running again by the time we got back to the hotel, so I may have been a good influence on him. Gotta go -- it's way later than I expected to stay up. But I don't have to get up quite so early to run in the morning now!! Peace out!!

Tuesday, July 24, 2007

things are good

got some good, no, great news today about my job. Reinforces that career-wise, I made a good choice with the decision we made a few months ago. Things are going well. That always makes things better all the way around.

I miss the boys terribly, still, and even more so since Elder Child seems to have come down with pneumonia. Apparently, he had it last week, but the substitute doc they saw neglected to give them the diagnosis directly. And the three-day course of antibiotics didn't do much except piss off the germs. So he spent most of this weekend miserable and hacking and sad. and it hadn't gotten better, so they went back in to see his regular doc today. But the plans to bring them up for a good long weekend are starting to solidify, so that's something to look forward to, and something that wouldn't be possible without this new job, so it's all good.

Ran 2 miles on the TM yesterday, during a driving afternoon rainstorm, but then was able to hit the north end of Central Park this morning. It was a brisk 60 degrees out and clear and just gorgeous. After work today a group of us went out to dinner, then walked a bit toward the middle part of Manhattan to get some of this. It was yummy and light and just what we needed after a nice evening stroll through the city. It was the first time I've been out and about after work -- usually I'm so wasted from a long day at the office that I just go for take-out and bring it back to the room. But tonight was fun and relaxing, and a good way to get to know some of my teammates.

Anyhoo, I'm running on battery power, so I've got to shut down soon. Just wanted to let you know I've not forgotten about all three of y'all!!

Sunday, July 22, 2007

6 miles and a Squishee

OK, so I had 10 on the schedule (actually, the original schedule, before I messed with it to make up for missing 10-milers the last TWO weeks called for 13 or 14, but I don't wanna talk about that...) and I called it a day after 6. I've pretty much decided I won't be doing an early-fall race, but just focus on White Rock. That gives me a couple of more weeks' breathing room before I have to start ramping up the mileage, which I need to adjust to the travel grind again. I couldn't really find one locally that wouldn't take me away from the kids for the whole weekend, and I just can't justify being gone for a race at this point. It's not like I'm breaking new territory or anything. So, mid-December it is. Which means I could bail after 6, which with the humidity and the late start (6:00 am before I headed out the door), was about all I could handle anyway. I felt like physically I could have done more, but mentally, I wanted to be home and cleaned up before all the boys woke up. I think mentally taking the time away from home for weekend runs is going to be the toughest part of this season. I am going to have to make it OK to be out for a couple of hours (or 3 or 4 closer to the race..) and I'm the toughest one to satisfy with that.

So there's that. 6 miles. Times were random, between 10:08 and 10:38, with walk breaks at every mile -- that was set up on the Garmin when I'd planned 10, remember. Then I came home and all three of the coughy-sneezies were up shortly after I showered. TDP DinoBoy is the best off of the lot; his symptoms were minor at the peak, and now he's just got the vestiges of a cough. Elder Child, even after a course of antibiotics, is still generating more slime out of his nose than the Kracken, and had to opt out of hockey yesterday and today. And of course, to round out the trifecta, Hub came home from a day-long class yesterday complaining of a scratchy throat, stuffy head and general malaise. Nothing like a house full of sick boys to twist the maternal guilt knife a little more when I climb into the 737, right? Oy.

Well, at the very minimum, I provided a little bit of relief this afternoon, in the form of Squishees in souvenir Spider-Pig cups. Well worth the 1.79 apiece to assuage the maternal guilt machine if you ask me!

Peace out. I'm not sure when I'll get a chance to update this week, but I'll do what I can.

Friday, July 20, 2007

Got it!

"It" of course being the 7th installment of HP. The scene at Barnes & Noble was insane -- a riot in the making if you ask me. Line stretched around the building, no visible crowd control, lots of folks on the edge of unhappiness. And apparently they were only going to let in 4 people at a time. Not worth it for a book.

So we went to the grocery story around the corner, stood in line for 15 minutes, waited another 7 to pay, and are home now. We got two copies, so Elder Child and I don't break into fisticuffs when I have to leave Sunday afternoon. Methinks the flight to NYC won't be nearly as bad this week!

Is it just me?

Warning -- absolutely no running or Tri content -- this post is strictly for me and anyone who knows of or has ever met the Bat)

or is anyone else struck at the physical resemblance between the onscreen Luna Lovegood and our own Batgrl (I'd link to something other than her flickr page, but the House o'Groove site has long been offline)?? Of course, since she doesn't allow photos of herself to be posted on the interweb, I can't post one for comparison. But for those of us who have seen her in the flesh, imagine her with blonde hair. Yes? I meant to post this last week when I first saw the movie, but things have been crazy-go-nuts around here, so now is the first I'm thinking of it again.

Now, even if the physical presence doesn't strike you as immediately similar, you have to consider the persona of Luna from the movie. Just something about her that made me feel warm and fuzzy. That is all. Back to regularly scheduled programming.

Thursday, July 19, 2007

Wow, what a week!

haven't had time to think once I leave the office, and then when I get back to the room, the brain is fried and the effort to connect to the interweb is way too much to deal with. So sorry! Gotta head out for a run in a minute before I pack up all my schtuff, so this will be short:

  • I haven't been in the pool in two weeks. Phoo.
  • I did not sign up for this weekend's IronGirl Tri in Las Colinas. I was hopeful to be ready to roll for it, but a) see above, and b) I haven't been on the bike since Danskin, effectively, and c) I don't want to be away from the boys (all 3 of them) on Sunday morning.
  • I was in the office on 57th and 11th Ave when the steam pipe blew. We were in a late meeting and everyone started getting calls from worried friends and family, but we were clueless.
  • 40-hour weeks in 4 days are easy to knock out when you work 13-hour days....
  • Last weekend stretched less than 48 hours, from late Friday night to early Sunday evening. That sucked. This weekend should be better.
  • I will probably end up working here in NYC long-term, but doing what, I'm not sure yet. AA miles, here I come!! I think I will get to know LaGuardia very well....
  • The East River Esplanade is a cool place to run, if you go south of 96th. If you go north, eh, not so much. I still prefer the Park.
  • Haven't had time to read *anyone's* blog or keep up with what's going on w/TBA or CompleteRunning folks. Sigh.

Gotta go, gotta go. See you on the other side. I promise I will try to update at least once this weekend, but I'm not putting anything behind it -- again, time withe the fam will take precedence if things get tight!

That is all

Friday, July 13, 2007


it's flyaway day!! home tonight, for a date with the Elder Child and a particular set of wizards. Cannot wait, but am sad that we didn't catch the IMAX on opening night like we'd planned. No matter. He has an appt with an orthopedic doctor this morning to see if/how badly the knee really is. He was hobbling a bit yesterday, apparently, but felt like he could skate if he wanted to; we all decided though that it wasn't worth the risk until the doctor had a chance to look at it more closely.

Didn't run yesterday, but I count the 3.5 mile walk from the office in mid-town Manhattan up to Spanish Harlem* as my workout for the day. I'd intended to cut through Central Park, but apparently I went too far east before cutting up north and missed it entirely. How do you do that? I guess you have to be a clueless tourist. No matter, I've seen it and will probably spend a lot more evenings walking through it in the next two weeks. Possibly longer -- I won't know for a few days yet whether I'll be assigned to this project long-term.

This morning, before packing all my stuff and heading back to the office, I did manage a short run down the Esplanade along the East River (at least I think that's the name of it -- it's on the East side of Manhattan....) toward the 59th St bridge. Pretty nice weather -- cooler than the other morning, with a breeze coming off the water. Then I cut back up York street by all the hospitals and stuff back to the hotel. A nice change of pace -- not that Central Park would necessarily get boring, but it's nice to have options, y'know? Total run time was 37 minutes and change -- when I mapped it on GMaps Pedometer, it came out to 3.76 miles. So, go me!! I had the Garmin, and while we were a bit more successful with the satellites this morning, I lost them coming up York Street, so I don't trust the mileage at all. No matter. All I know is I got nice and sweaty and worked a bit, so I feel good about it. And the doormen at the hotel now sing the Rocky theme when they see me, which cracks me up eight different ways!

anyhoo, gotta run. Folks are starting to arrive, so I've got to get cracking. See you on the other side, once I get back to Texas!!

**I thought we were staying in Upper East Side, but the map in the cab this morning said the hotel's area is more accurately Yorkville/Spanish Harlem. I'm not sure if it really matters, but wanted to be accurate, y'know!!

Wednesday, July 11, 2007

holy hell... or, things that sucketh....

  1. having the Elder Child get hurt at hockey AGAIN. Apparently, one of his coaches (the coaches that drive around the country teaching week-long camps) fell on him at the end of practice today. Bruised the outer part of his right knee; our regular pediatrician, who is a hockey fiend, was not available so Hub took him to another doc in the practice. That doc started talking about possible tear in the MCL, stay off of it until you can get an MRI, blah, blah, blah. [Here goes my "G" rating, so fair warning] FUCK. why does this happen when I leave town? Argh. The Elder Child seems to be handling it well, and in fact was bummed that he can't finish out the camp (we are at least getting our $$$ pro-rated -- not that the money's a big deal, but hey, your guy fell on my kid after all) this week. But it's best that he stay off it rather than risk jeopardizing summer season or worse.
  2. walking two blocks over, five blocks down and three up from the hotel in search of decent food, only to find a Chinese place ACROSS the freaking street. Nice. At least I got to walk around in the post-rain washed streets for a bit and see all the fancy buildings on the upper East Side.
  3. Being in one of the coolest cities in the world and not feeling like I can do much sightseeing or adventuring without cheating the boys and Hub. It feels like I'm betraying them if I do stuff without them, but it also gets really old doing nothing but work all the time. And I'll be bummed if I leave this engagement and don't make a chance to do something cool and NY-ish. Hub said I should do those things that they wouldn't enjoy -- so at least my runs to Central Park are safe from guilt!
Two posts in one day. How lucky for you!!!

A few notes

real quick, before I head out to forage for food here:
  • I ran in Central Park this morning. I'm calling it 6 miles, although zee Garmin could never hook up with a satellite. It was 66 minutes of fun, I tell ya! So sad that I couldn't linger longer, though.
  • The rain!! OMG, it followed me from Dallas! Torrential downpour this afternoon -- we got lucky though and caught a cab outside the office almost immediately after stepping out into it. At least the streets of NYC will be washed of the odd spills and spots on the sidewalks....
  • Work! Yeah, the 10-11 hour days again. Sigh. But it goes quickly, when you can't see outside your window at the passing of the day.
  • the iPod, she is dead. Won't recharge off my laptop, so I've been tuneless all week. No big whoop since there's plenty to keep me occupied on the run, but I miss having the Nike Plus data, especially when zee Garmin is uncooperative.
  • Need new shoes. I meant to get them last week, actually the week before that, but haven't made it yet. Not feeling any repercussions yet, but I think that's more luck than anything. Must do this weekend.
  • I'm trying to arrange schedule so Elder Child and I can go out to Joe Pool and catch the tri going on out there Sunday -- it will depend on the pond hockey schedule and if Hub can hang with TDP DinoBoy in the morning. Might be tough seeing as how I leave back out for NYC in the early afternoon. Phooey.

That is all.

Monday, July 09, 2007

home again, then off again!

so I get home late Saturday afternoon, early evening, actually. Mom was settled at home, and we had what ended up being a nice relaxing visit. Except for that whole hospital thing. Yeah.... Anyhoo, I met my in-laws at a swimming party for a classmate of TDP DinoBoy so they could head home before dark. Afterward, I then scurried home and onto the couch until Hub and the Elder Child arrived home from hockey. Late. As in past midnight late. So I didn't get up and run 10 miles yesterday. Nor did I find the energy to run 10 miles before they left for pond hockey at 11:00, either. I did find it in me to get to the gym for 25 minutes on the disappearing stairs and then 20 more minutes on the TreadClimber late in the afternoon. Not the same as a 10-mile run, I know that. But it was the best that I could do, so that's all we got, babe.

I didn't run this morning, with all intentions of going to the gym tonight after dinner, with TDP DinoBoy in tow, for my 2 hour date with the TM. But then I get a text message from my boss, who is in a meeting in NYC with this big project we have going on up there. And they want me there tomorrow. Which means I fly out today. As in 6 hours from now today. Sigh. This causes all kinds of consternation with Elder Child's hockey camp, which is 25 miles from here, 25 miles from Hub's work and way too far for MIL to do pick-up in the middle of the afternoon. We think we've got it worked out, though, even though it will mean putting all kinds of miles on Hub's car to get it done. It will be tough on Hub, with all kinds of driving and tough on Elder Child, with having to hang out at Dad's office for a big chunk of the afternoon, when he'd really just want to get home and snooze, but it's going to have to do. Because, yeah, you guessed it, it's all we got. Sigh.

Jetting out this afternoon also means that I am picking up TDP DinoBoy for lunch and taking him to his first art class, the better to take away the sting that I won't be home tonight or tomorrow, or the next day. I didn't have time to prep him for me being away like I prefer to, but there is no time. The only consolation is that I'm going to NYC, so I can send him a photo from my phone of the Vampire State Building, where Kong fell to his death in what has become TDP's favorite black and white movie. It's a small consolation, but it will have to do, 'cause it's all we got, babe.

Gotta run. No workout for today, apparently, since it's a tough fit in between packing, art school dropoff, hockey pickup and the security line at DFW.

Happy training! Do me a favor and run an extra mile for me, m'kay??

Friday, July 06, 2007

Posting from a Different World

Wow. I found internet. At the one Starbucks in town. Seriously. There is only ONE Starbucks in this whole city. Wild, considering there are three within two miles of my house, and five if you are willing to go three miles out. Anyhoo, the reach of the internet now includes my hometown, apparently, and thankfully. As I am reminded on a constant basis here, this is a different world. different from where I live now, and different from what it was when I first left, nearly 20 years ago.

I took a nice 4-mile jaunt around the neighborhood where I grew up this morning, if by nice you mean sweltering, moist and somewhat depressing. It did reinforce to me how big things seem when you are little, and I realized that my entire existence up until I was about 14 all happened within a mile of my house. My elementary school is about a third of mile in one direction, the junior high is half a mile (maybe, if you didn't take the wobbly bridge over the canal/irrigation ditch) in another. And yet all these places I ran to this morning easily, and kept going past them, by a long stretch, to get to my 4-mile goal.

The immediate area where my parents still live definitely has seen better days; I don't know that it was ever necessarily a good area to start off with, but it is what it is. There is graffiti on street signs, and weedy lawns in front of dilapidated houses sit in stark contrast to $30,000 cars parked in the driveways, or on the streets in front. I can guarantee there are houses in my parents' neighborhood where you have three or more generations crammed into a 1200-sq foot house, without air conditioning or health insurance or dental care, but hey, they've got a 50-inch widescreen with digital cable, so what more do you need? There are girls who are maybe 18 or 19, with two or three kids already, by different men, all of whom are at least 10 years older than the high school girls they courted. There are folks who enroll in the community college for one semester, then drop out, because, hey, they have a job already, at the Wal-Mart, or at the mall, and hey, what more do you need? You don't want to get too big for your britches, y'know, or think that you're better than everyone else by going away to college, and waiting until you can afford them to have kids.

And then there is my Mom, and her health, and the general state of healthcare where she lives, which isn't much different than what it is in DFW, or in any poor areas around the country, where people don't have a primary care doctor, and they're not just obese, but morbidly so, and they only show up in the ER when they stroke out or are so far advanced with their diabetes or hypertension, or cancer or whatever, that it's too late to do anything to help them. And then they talk about how y'know they were OK until they went to the hospital, and then the hospital made them sick, and if they'd only not gone to the ER... But that's how people around here think, the same people that say if you lose weight, you must be sick, because why would you want to be on a diet??

There are so many things that I run from when I come here. This is why I don't come here. My past, my roots, my beginnings are all here in front of me, and I can't reconcile them with who I am now. I run and I run and I run, and at the end, I can't get away from where I was born, where I grew up, where I learned to be who I am, at my core. I run and I run, but at the end, no matter how many marathons I run, or how many degrees I earn, or how much money I make, at the end of the day, I still am just this girl from the Valley.

Wednesday, July 04, 2007

6 miles

on the treadmill at the gym, because I was too lazy to get my butt out of bed before the outside turned into a sauna. Total time 62:00, including time I had to jump off and check the kids' club when they called someone with my first name and a similar last name on the loudspeaker. It's very unusual to hear my first name unless they mean me, so I was a little concerned until I got there and realized it wasn't my kid that was screaming his lungs out. Mine came running up to me and said, "I'm not ready to go yet!!!" So back on the TM for the rest of my run. Non eventful and dreadfully boring, especially since the iPod was dead as a doornail and I didn't have my tunes. So I had to watch the View and All My Children with captions. For some reason, about 5 of the treadmills were inoperable, so every working one was being used and there wasn't really the option of moving around to be in front of another monitor. Bah. No matter, I got it done and now I'm about to have a veggie burger crumbled over my salad, yummy. We're in charge of desserts for the cookout this afternoon so I've got to figure out what I want to bring. I'm hoping the rain holds off so we can actually swim outside -- would completely suck if we couldn't even get in the water. But there will be fireworks, so, yee-haw!

Anyway, must eat now so I can clean up and then fold the laundry that's been piling up. Later, skaters!!

Tuesday, July 03, 2007

I didn't know...

going into spin class (my first ever) this morning that it would be so hard....

I didn't know quitting was an option. So even though there were at least two times that I could barely turn the pedals and yet she kept telling us to turn up the tension, and at least three times that I was literally crying because I just.couldn't.do.it, I kept going. And I finished. And at the end, she said, "For all you beginners, GREAT job! The first-timers usually get up and leave about halfway through!" Um, yeah, not that I didn't consider it, I just didn't think it would be a cool thing to do. So I stuck it out. Tenacity is my middle name, after all. How da heck do you think I get anything accomplished with this non-athletic body of mine anyway??

I will be heading down south for a couple of days -- my mom is in the hospital for blackouts. She had one Friday and another Sunday afternoon, so she's been having tests and such done. They're releasing her today, but she goes back on Friday for the results, and I want to hear from the doctor firsthand what the issues are. She had an angiogram done a few weeks ago and had been feeling better, but out of the blue, BAM, these blackouts are back. When they did some diagnostics a couple of months ago, they found evidence of a small stroke at some point, and there is just too much for me to digest from long-distance. So I go down there on Thursday. And now we know (again) why I do the things I do with this non-athletic body of mine -- to stave off genetics and the hereditary predisposition to those kinds of things. Sigh.

And then next week,there is a 70 percent chance I head to NYC for work, for at least six weeks. Which will be fine, except I got very spoiled working from home the last six weeks. Bah.

But, on the bright side, there is enough of a break in the clouds that my lawn boy is actually able to cut the jungle in the front and back yards today, but he best hurry before the rain starts again. Sigh.

OWN: 1-hour kick-my-ass-oh-my-god-I'm-going-do-die spin class, followed by 2 miles on the TM in 23:30 (recovery run, dontcha know?)

Monday, July 02, 2007

Sweet Niblets!!

OK, I give up!! I'm sorry for whatever it is that I've done that's pissed off Mother Nature. Geez, Louise, make it stop already!!!

See those little purple spots between Arlington and Mansfield? That's me and my house, getting pounded AGAIN. Oy!