Sunday, September 21, 2008

Dare I Dream the Impossible?

I'm lining up my goals and races for next season (early, I know, but I hate being late for anything!) One of the ones that I put was "drop a minute off my 5K time" which is a tall order, but considering I dropped 3:20 off my time this year from last year I believe I can shave sixty seconds off of my time. I went from running almost ten minute miles, never hitting under 30 minutes in a 5K ever in my life to a steady 26:40 in what some people consider a difficult race (I run it, and only it, every year so I'm not sure what a different race would be like...).

I saw that racing at one minute less would put me in a 25:40 slot or under. Noticing how close that was to twenty five minutes, I revised my goal and put "run a sub 25 5k."

Do I dare disturb the universe? This is something that is HUGE for me, coming from the girl who ran 30+ Minute five Ks consistently for, oh lets see...7 years. That would be, in a matter of two years, 5+ minutes off my 5K time.

So, I'm shooting for that, along with some other things, not yet revealed, for next years athletic endeavors.

Photo Creative Commons from Flickr here

Tuesday, September 16, 2008

The Chase for the Perfect Relationship...

When people ask me to describe my relationship, this is usually what I say:

"It's fabulous, perfect. Totally drama free. I wouldn't trade it for the world" and I usually get one of two reactions - either they think I'm being totally sarcastic, or they want to know what it is that makes my relationship so perfect and drama free. I'm not being sarcastic, so I have to tell you the answer to the second reaction.

Here is the secret: WORK. I learned from my own experience, and from watching my parents that all relationships take incredible amounts of work.

I am a lucky, blessed girl. I grew up in a household that really set the tone for a lot of my relationships. My parents are very much in love and it was very evident growing up. I can only remember them ever fighting once as a child, though they have told me that there were times they wanted to kick each other out of the house - they quietly, and hidden from us kids, worked out their problems to the best of their abilities. In fact, they hid any arguments so well that I never realized (and I am not making this up) that people divorced regularly until I was about 14 and started going to a public school, where many of the kids had divorced parents. I thought this was an anomaly, used only in extreme circumstances. Divorce was, simply put, never given to me as an option in a relationship. Once you were married, that was it.

They live out that practice. I can tell my parents get annoyed with each other, my parents have become a lot more open about the work that goes into the relationship now. (I can't figure out if it's because we are adults and they are a bit more relaxed or they are subconsciously trying to show me that marriage needs tolerance and patience since I talk about it every so often with them...).

My parents also seemed to be a frustratingly united force! My sixteen year old self could NEVER get away with going to mom if dad said no. (well, sometimes, but usually they had to "talk about it" and then get back to me. Oh the agony of waiting!) They recognized that they were a team and brought their unique skills and trades to the table. My mother, sharp as a pin with the empathy and understanding that only a mom could have was our advocate and our psychologist. My dad, who shares many of the hobbies I have was my friend, instructor, and cheerleader. Both of them created my spiritual character in equal measures. My mom and dad FOUGHT for me every day, against things I didn't even realize parents had to battle at the time.

Once, when I was eight or nine, I asked my dad who he loved most in the world.

He said, of course, "God." I told him that didn't count! It had to be a human!

Without hesitation he said "I love your mother first, then you three kids equally. You'll understand that one when you grow up." I filed it away and pondered it a lot, keeping it in the back of my head wondering when I would get to understand it.

Well, I grew up. I understand it. My relationships with boys became relationships with men, and I see where he's coming from. My parents realized that without that love for each other we kids wouldn't have much to go on.

Now about that work: My parents taught me the value of working. Every day when I left for school my dad would say "Work hard for the Lord!" Every single day. Even now, when I'm complaining about my job he says that...It applies to relationships too.

I have put a LOT of work into this relationship that I'm in now. It's the hardest one I've ever been in, but it's the most rewarding one I've ever been in. I can't say we've never bickered or we have never had a disagreement but we work really hard to proactively communicate with each other and stomp out issues before they become problems. We are usually able to resolve any issue (with each other...don't get me started on my bank!) in five minutes or less. We tell each other to snap out of it, give each other time to cool off, and talk it through, calmly. 90 percent of the time we realize that the arguement isn't worth it.

So, we give both give 100 percent. And it pays off.

Friday, September 12, 2008

winner wear wednesday?

In high school for a short time we had winner wear Wednesday where all the people I was friends with dressed up in suits and ties on Wednesday. It lasted about three weeks. Good times...

but now I present to you another winner wear...

1st place Sport U24. I moved up a category, but I may drop back down to beginner because I didn't have the handling skills to make me feel comfortable racing there. I was annoying myself and others. It was a hard, long, fun race though. I like doing the longer distances, this one being 25 miles or so of wet, wet dirt.

And then I remember... grace is sufficient for thee.

Why is that so easy to forget?

Tuesday, September 09, 2008

From the Simple Woman's Daybook...

For Today...

Outside my Window...the sun is shining but the sky is dark

I am thinking...
How I am tired and would love a nap!

From the learning being emotionally stretched can feel lovely and how hard it is to find stamps in Detroit!

I am thankful lovely relationship and taking a lunch break even if it did have to happen at 4:00 with much more work to do afterwards

From the kitchen...simple gluten free pasta and tomato sauce from a can.

I am wearing...My birthday dress, a black cardigan, one of my green aprons and a black hair ribbon.

I am reading...Grace Livingston Hill's The Red Signal

I am get over this sinus infection ASAP

I am creating...users

I am hearing...City Country Sounds - crickets chirping, the bees buzzing, dogs barkng, cars passing, hammers banging.

Around the house...It's floor washing day but I'm already out of energy.

One of my favorite handwritten letters.

A Few Plans For The Rest Of The Week...Work, Relax, get over being sick, Have JR visit this weekend.

Here is a picture thought I am sharing with you...TBA

Saturday, September 06, 2008

Things I miss about France

1) Alone time with my sister.
2) Lovely looking people, even the worst dressed still dress a lot better than here, it seemed to come naturally. Fashion inspiration everywhere and the ability to buy knockoffs for 5 euros just about anywhere so you can get the season's look at a low low price. And the seasons turn over fast, despite what they say about french women buying a few nice things and wearing them to death. They do that with the basics and add the trendy stuff on top of it.
3) Acceptance of personal maintenance. France is a shrine to upkeep and loveliness of self. Here in the states it's considered an extravagance. I guess that's what comes from being from "pioneer stock."
4) History EVERYWHERE. Breathing it in. Really, really old history. Not history like "this two hundred year old house, blah blah blah, but roman ruin history.
5) Nan.
6) Sam and his stories. Especially the one about the graveyard. I have to throw in Shakespeare and Co here, too.
7) Public transportation
9) It's warmer than Wisconsin
10) The feeling of being an ex patriot.

Wednesday, September 03, 2008

MRI and no riding.

I haven’t been on my bike in a week and two days. I won’t ride again tonight though I will probably put the road bike together and try for a group ride on Thursday after work if I can find one around here. I think the Wolverines have one leaving out of somewhere close to work.…

I haven’t been on my bike because the doctor thinks I tore tendons in my wrist so I can’t do much on my mountain bike and I don’t want to crash and tear them further, and the road riding here sucks and is a 2.5 hour drive away.

I also went to Milwaukee last weekend and hung out with my good girlfriends and of course JR.

I had an MRI last night which was an experience and a half. They actually required me to check in to the hospital, giving me scrubs and a hospital bracelet. I was stretched out superman style on this board which they loaded into the giant machine and I had to sit perfectly still. I wanted to just take a nap but the durn machine was so loud with all it’s clicking and grinding that I wasn’t able to sleep. My whole body and arm went numb from lying so still strapped down like that.

I drove home and went straight to bed I was so tired.

The Kwame Kilpatrick hearing is on tv, live. What a debacle! It does make for boring TV.

I want peanut M&Ms…I’m getting some on my way home, when I get my oil changed.