- 08.29.16 | Permalink | | Comments Off on Iron Horse Half Marathon
This race was a little different. Unlike other routes we’ve run, this one was all downhill which meant we parked, hopped on a school bus, rode up the mountain, got dropped off, hiked 1/4 a mile to the start and ran back to the car. For 13.1 miles. Downhill. The whole way. The course started on the Snoqualmie Valley Trail, wove past the Rattlesnake Ridge trailhead, a myriad of bridges and so many beautiful views of valleys, rivers and old growth forest! When we left for Disneyland, the trees were just beginning to shift colors and I was surprised at how very autumnal the entire run was; gorgeous!
Since we both felt under the weather, we decided to stick together. She was feeling a little insecure and I was just fine with running alongside her the whole time, but then I said something awful: I’m might go slow. Like, really slow kid. We are the last wave and I’m slow, so we might actually sweep the race and take last place. When we took off, she realized that this race was different from others: these runners were serious. No one was going to start walking at the half mile- these were people who likely run 10 or more miles on the regular. This wasn’t going to be an easy win. Furthermore, there weren’t that many runners in our heat so we thinned out pretty quickly, and before we knew it we were in a fairly small clump of 4-5 people with no one else in sight. I started to fall behind them as she stayed in pace with them. She looked apologetically back and let me run on my own- and I preffered knowing that I wasn’t holding her back, honestly. She quickly faded away from my view. At that point, there wasn’t anyone in sight behind me. I couldn’t see anyone in front of me, either, and I started enjoying myself like, Maria in Sound of Music, spinning around the trail with arms thrown wide. It was that beautiful. But then, I saw some other runners come around the bend behind me and realized I wasn’t last, nor did I want this to be my first-last place, so I buckled down and decided to keep my lead. There were two out and backs, as well, so I realized that there were about 15 people behind me, so my big lead wasn’t anything to worry about too much. (I actually finished over 100 people from last😉)
On the first out and back I came across my darling daughter who shared her woeful tale – she tripped, fell, landed on her phone, the heel of her hand went into the phone, breaking through the glass face, gouging her hand, plus she scraped her leg all up, but bruised and bloodied she continued on. She didn’t know the aid station would help her with a bandaid and quick trip to the finish line, but armed with that information, she got a bandaid and finished the race like a little determined hero. What a little stud.
- 08.27.16 | Permalink | | Comments Off on Bubble Run
I have to confess something: I signed up for the Bubble Run under duress. I asked Gigi which runs she wanted to do this year and she named Beat the Blerch and the Bubble Run as her numbers one and two priorities. I fear the water. I rarely ride amusement park rides that get me wet for two reasons: I hate having a wet crotch that results in wet-thigh-rub-ouchie from running and or walking afterwards and I get overly worried about wet, blistery feet. The Bubble Run has planned wetness for three miles. Yikes!!! Through a bubble bog every half mile! Including the start line! It sounded like a nightmare, so when I thought we were going to be in Disneyland for the race I was not disappointed. At all. I asked a few friends if they wanted to run with our bibs and I got a loose commitment from a friend who said maybe and then never gave it another thought until Wednesday when the informational email came. I realized that we had two races this weekend- a 5k and half marathon! Oops! I spent all day Friday trying to talk Bradley and Jude into using our bibs until Jude spiked a fever and Bradley worked in insulation all day and his lungs felt yucky. Indeed, it was to be Guinevere and I running this one, so I decided to embrace the run and plan for the best.
Well, it was AWESOME! We picked up our packets and modified our run shirts into tanks, which, I won’t lie, made us pretty stoked for the run. Then we looked at videos and got even more amped. We set our alarms, drank some coffee, ate a granola bar and hit the road. As we stood at the start line, the crowd yelled and the foam started flowing. We surged forward and, by the time we crossed the start, we were already knee high in bubbles! Each bog was a different color and as we went though we’d get covered in a new dye. Some of the bubble bogs were waist deep, but the blue one was over my head and I literally had to hang onto Gigi otherwise I’d have lost her! It was terrific fun! When we got close to the finish line, Gigi ran ahead to take pictures of her mom as she crossed it, which was so flattering to me. How thoughtful was that? We totally want to do this again, next year, except we want to bring our boys to play along. I think Jude would just love it, especially at the end where there was a bubble canon that shot bubbles like crazy into the air. We got to play, make bubble angels and roll around in it to our heart’s content. It was a fun and energizing way to prepare ourselves for the real race tomorrow: Iron Horse Half Marathon! We both have a cold and this helped us to feel much more confident!
- 08.22.16 | Permalink | | Comments Off on Bigger, Littler, Wonderfuller
So, day bazillion in Disneyland. Having kids that are bigger means we can cover a lot of ground in a short period of time. It’s amazing that things have changed so significantly in the past two years with their growing up. I used to say taking the kids to Disneyland was like trying to herd cats through the mall at Christmastime, slow and meandering- but now they are focused, fast and driven. Both ways are fun and nice. I’ve loved every single phase of parenthood- I have yet to get to a point where I’m ‘over’ being a mom and for them to ‘just grow up already.’ If anything I want to make them slow down, molasses them, make them stay little. It was lovely when we were walking behind toddling Gigi down Winnie the Pooh’s path and just as lovely to be watching my big boy, Jude, look like one of the oldest kids in the Jedi Academy. I can’t wait to bring grandkids, too. Shhhhh…. Every phase, I’m telling you. I had one day where I went over 20,000 steps and what got me there was going in the evening and morning. To get a bunch of steps, at Disneyland, you really have to put in your time. Line standing equals no steps. Going home at 3:00 to swim in the pool and laze around the hotel room watching cable tv doesn’t help, either. I suppose going fast and accomplishing a lot in that short period of time comes at a cost. LOL!
Gigi bought this dress as a bonus back to school outfit. She got so much attention while wearing it that she turned to us at one point and said that she felt like she was little again and wearing a princess dress. We called her Princess Guinevere, the Sky Princess. Even if she won’t dress up for the park anymore, she will always be a princess when in the Magic Kingdom.❤️
- 08.22.16 | Permalink | | Comments Off on Donnie
So… I posted this the other day, while we were on vacation, and, like any other blog post, I posted it to Facebook and Donnie Wahlberg liked it. The Donnie Wahlberg from NKOTB and Blue Bloods. The Donnie Wahlberg who scored a fairly dedicated crush from me during my teenage years when I wasn’t ready for a real boyfriend yet. At first I thought one of my friends was messing with me and had created a Donnie Wahlberg account to punk me (and wondered who the heck has that kind of time), then I thought it was a fan page, but I went and looked and…!!! It was him! Does it mean anything? Nope. But does it mean everything? Yep.
Sigh. I will meet him one day. Oh yes, it will be done. It’s good to have goals, huh?
I’m not sure how he found me. I didn’t tag him except on Instagram, so he may have followed that paper trail, and yes, I totally spazzed out. The Donnie Osmond comment was great because I loved him, too. Apparently I have a thing for guys named Donnie! He he! I still have my Donny Osmond doll I got for my fifth birthday!
(And that’s a skort- not my undies- it’s my favorite travel clothing ever!)
- 08.19.16 | Permalink | | Comments Off on Vacation-y
Being on vacation is funny. It’s supposed to be all about relaxation and recharging your batteries, but theme park vacations are anything but relaxing! Since we left on Wednesday I haven’t slept in past 6:00 AM and haven’t gone to bed before 11:30! And guess what? It’s a fabulous vacation! Lol! Our vacations are almost always at Disneyland. We are just ‘those people’. Some like Hawaii, some go camping, we go to Disneyland. Never before have I been reminded of how much a creature of habit I am than this trip. Disneyland is relaxing to our family. I always just thought we liked it here and that’s why, but it really has more to do with our familiarity with the environment and straight up happiness than anything. This year we added the Wizarding World of Harry Potter at Universal Studios to our itinerary and oh my goodness if that wasn’t the most exhausting day on the books! We had to learn the map, see all new attractions and an entirely different method of processing entertainment.
I won’t say we are uptight and pious, but we definitely shy away from cynicism, teasing, violence and, mayhaps, we’ve passed that onto our children because we had to keep coaching them- it’s ok! It’s funny to make fun of old people… Sometimes… Babies, too! Boogers are hilarious- so are farts! And it’s just fake blood! It’s not gross! Don’t worry! They only pretended to cut her arm off! But they were chagrined and shocked by all the rude and insensitive humor! LOL! Psycho, with the motel, iconic house on the hill and actual, real life Norman Bates carrying his dead mother to the trunk of the car, then chasing us menacingly with a knife, freaked them out beyond the beyond and forget about Jaws. Straight up traumatic for my littles. They’re so not toughened up! By the time we walked around in the 85 degree heat in that environment with 10,000 other people for 15 hours, we were so ready for hotel and home-sweet-DISNEYLAND!
The truly interesting part of this whole vacay thang this time ’round is that I always feel so authentically, entirely exhausted by the end of a theme park day, but I have yet to exceed 14,000 steps! Last time we vacationed in Disneyland we had a hotel walk to take every morning and night that resulted in a tremendous step boost to over 20,000 steps daily. I’ll be curious to see what actually shakes out as the average by the end of the trip. That said, my hips feel like I’ve been running ten miles a day. I realized that there’s a lot of standing in line and everywhere else and that definitely takes its toll on me. I’m planning a solid rest time upon our return home to insure I’ll be able to run the half marathon on the 28th! The other interesting thing, regarding my body, is that my belt had to be tightened two notches since I got here. Either I’m dehydrated or I’m losing some weight. Hopefully it’s the latter and not the former. 😋
- The Live Frozen Musical in the Hyperion theater is just incredible- a parallel to the Aladdin show that lasted there for 14 years. I actually got teary a couple of times. I thought I’d heard Let it Go enough times to not get mushy about it, but it felt anthemic and girl powerish in a way that was pretty moving. Loved it!
- Soarin’ was new! Before I’ve always soared over California, but they changed it to be worldwide. I saw the scope of the Great Wall of China and was able to show my kids specifically how the Bavarian castles of Neuschwanstein and Hohenschwangau are just a hop and a skip across the forest from one another, just like when I saw them in real life. It allowed my family to see things, to travel the world in a super accessible way and it was fairly emotional to me as I love, Love, LOVE travel but can’t afford it on a grand scale often. Last time I saw a different continent I was 23!
- Turtle Talk with Crush (an interactive movie where a guy behind the scenes voices the character and talks with the audience while the turtle swims around on the screen) resulted in Jude being quizzed about his favorite food. Jude told Crush his favorite food is a banana because of its shape. 😳 Yep. The audience literally gasped… Crush went silent…. And then he added because it’s shaped like the letter C. I was dying of silent laughter! My sweetheart of a boy!
- During our first morning at Disneyland, we cleaned up the entirety of Tomorrowland and also managed to ride Indiana Jones PLUS Thunder Mountain before 1:00! We were impressed!We learned to go to the opposite park as has the one that is hosting the Early Entry Magic Morning. The Disney Park (Disneyland or Disney’s California Adventure) with the early entry is PACKED while the other park has been comparably empty. We banked a lot of solid, low-crowd-impact playtime by taking advantage of the schedule. 😉
- Chewbacca was the sweetest Wookie ever. He lovingly caressed all of our faces, compared our hair color and lengths before hugging us the same way he hugs Han after he is released from the carbonite. I’ll confess I may have cried a little. The older I get the sappier (and happier) I get.