Today, I was making our bed while watching HGTV and having a heated debate in my head. “Man, we need a bigger house.” vs. “Why can’t you just be happy with what you have, Les?” And then I headed into the bathroom to clean all that nasty spit spatter off the mirror, y’all know what I’m talking about. How does that even happen anyway!? That’s when the doorframe jumped out and hit my pinky toe. I screamed. Ricardo seemed a bit distracted, but asked if I was okay.
“I think I broke my toe!” *Without even cussing, by the way.
And that’s when my usually super sensitive and supportive husband says, “Oh well, nothing you can do about that.” And then walked off on his own pain free two feet.
I wiggled my toe until it looked like it was swelling into place and the bathroom will remain dirty for the next week. Clearly, we need a bigger house since I’m running into things all the time.
For the last few weeks, I’ve really been trying to write and workout everyday. If writer’s block resembles Dory from Nemo, then I’ve got it. “Look, something shiny!” might as well be my daily mantra. I have managed to get to the gym and go to my favorite classes and workout.
My problem with the gym is I like the people there. So my “workout” at the gym takes a while. Like, half a day kind of a while. My one hour workouts turn into 3 hours real fast.
Meanwhile, I’m attending another writer’s workshop, an extended version of the last one I attended. And in doing so, I have homework _ an assignment I’ve known about for 4 months is now due in one week. But Ellen Degeneres as a blue and black striped fish is ruining me. When I’m working out, I get fabulous and creative writing ideas. But when I go home to write, the laundry, dishes, dog, dinner, kids’ school volunteer activities and something shiny await.
Perhaps the broken toe is a bide of time _ one solid week of writing. No working out. And if I can get away with it, no laundry, perhaps we eat out all week, and the dog walks herself. It’s as if the gods of writing are exclaiming, “Look Leslie, Something shiny! It’s your toe!”
Man, I’m really putting myself out there. The bruising is about the prettiest part of this picture.
Have you ever thought about what your pinky toe does for you? I mean, really thought about it. Stop and thank your pinky toes right now. It turns out, when you walk up and down stairs, your toes help grip for balance. Wearing a shoe is a delicate subject right now. I’d gotten over limping until I couldn’t bare to wear my $5 Old Navy flip flops to church and for Jesus and my own pride, opted on very soft and flimsy ballet slipper shoes. OUCH. Let the limping resume. I’m sure all the parishioners assumed I just had knee replacement surgery. But alas, no. It’s my stinking pinky toe.
So, I’m taking this moment to check out and sit down and disable myself from all the busy shiny stuff in my life. A solid week of writing and sitting. And icing.
That’s how I roll.
Song of the day: Every Day I Write The Book Of Love _ by Elvis Costello (Might be the funnest musician’s website ever) I’m just sayin.
I find it ironic that as kids, the easiest word to learn is “NO” and yet as adults, we can’t seem to say it so easily. Unless it’s to kids.
So, I’m sure you’re all wondering what happened with that 10k. No? Too bad, I’m telling you about it, any way. What happened was, my pal Hannah couldn’t do the Corporate Cup. One for me and luck. But then she could indeed do another 10k the following week. And there’s the wash. I kept texting her riveting and very funny messages, “Okay, this isn’t like high school where you tell me about a party and then I go and you nor the party are there. It’s not like that is it?” She swore to me she was in it. Fine. I resolved I would run as much as I could, walk until I felt like I could run again, and then run and finish the stupid 10k. I refer to it as stupid because it is a subject, not an object _ which is the rule in our house, and also because of my bad attitude.
Meanwhile, back at the ranch, we announced we were taking Lucy school shopping. Something about cold weather and her pants not quite long enough for jeans, not quite short enough for capris. She keeps insisting they are totally okay to wear. We try ever so delicately to stop her from our own childhood tall kid fashion faux pas. It just takes us a while to get it, y’all.
I asked her where she’d rather go: Kohl’s or Target. Mind you, I just upped the ante with choices of Kohl’s over Walmart, but I think it’s time. And that’s when Lucy (future poker winner) called my bluff and announced she’d like to go to Justice. Justice is a really crappy rip off store. By crappy I mean, it’s dirty, it’s overpriced, and all the kids go there, Mom. Dang it. That’s just my humble opinion. For the last 9 years, I’ve gotten away with clothing my children in hand_me_downs, resale shop clothes, Sam’s Club, Target, and Wal_mart fashions. Look, they wear clothes because it’s the law. And they destroy them on their own accord. DESTROY THEM. So, I haven’t been real excited about dropping coin on high _ or even mediocre _ dollar items. When they don’t destroy them, they grow right out of them anyways.
However, Lucy’s embarking on an age. An age when little girls notice what you’re wearing. I don’t need Lucy to wear Versace just yet, but I do want her to feel good in her clothes. Something I’ve never quite been able to do myself. Probably because as I type, I’m in some sweet Target yoga loungy pants, a tank top from Walmart, $5 flipflops, and a fleece pullover that I only got from Old Navy because it was on clearance. Let’s be real, it was on clearance because no one would buy it. Y’all get my drift? Lucy probably has the better idea. I have no hope, but we can help her out. If the child wants to go to Justice, let’s do it. I’ve kept her out of this store as long as possible. It’s time to go.
By the way, have you ever been to Justice? Cute clothes, but seriously, it’s disgusting and messy there. I don’t like it. The check out resembles Wal_mart with all the candy and perfume and pink wigs. I’ve been there twice, there’s trash on the floor, and it’s just gross. I was sure to point it out to Lucy. She wasn’t fazed by my tactics. Still, we did find some really cute jeans. I let her grab whatever she wanted and try it on. The problem is, she’s super adorable in everything. Every color, every style, the kid is a rock star in fashion. Girl can work it. After we tried it all on, I decided to check the price tags, I mean, it can’t be TOO bad, it’s a kids clothing store, right? UH WRONG.
So, we had to stop our shopping frenzy, and really have her slow down and pick out just a few items. I explained budget and that we can come back later and pick up a couple more items, but that for now, for our whimsy “OMG, it’s chilly out and Lucy has no warm clothes” shopping trip, just a few pieces for today. She was totally cool with it, because she’s awesome, and also because she won’t forget I said we could go back later.
The girl got a pair of jeans more expensive than mine. But they are super cute. And really, while she can, and while there’s one of us in the family legally capable of wearing Jeggings, she should have them.
The next day, I went to sign up for the 10k _ and it was $50. Now I’ve never run a 10K, and I don’t know what I was expecting the price to be, but that’s a little steep right? Even more so, I’d just had this great talk with Lucy about budgets and spending. I told my daughter she couldn’t have clothes. To warm her body. And I’m about to throw down $50 for a 10K that I’m pretty sure I can’t even run half of? And I had to pull the plug. Now I’m an a_hole because Hannah has signed up for the 10k _ and I’m bailing. Nice. It reminds me of the time I did the Olympic Distance triathlon and met the guy who’s buddies all bailed on him.
My point was this, do I say no to Hannah and make a baby step to contribute to our budget plan? Or do I stick to my agreement that I’d do the 10K and let my family down. Now, really, I wouldn’t be letting my family down. But I’m a mom, and I’ve just set myself up to feel guilty either way.
So, I told Hannah no, I couldn’t do it. I am sure Hannah thought I was a little wacky since I was talking that big talk and seriously, what’s $50? Well, it’s a baby step in the right direction, I think. My policy is: I do not break promises _ and I did promise Hannah I’d do a 10k with her. But perhaps I should learn a new policy: do not make promises you’re unsure of like if you can afford it, or if you can effn even do it, silly pants.
I promised Hannah I’d do a race with her next season _ allotting me plenty of time to train, or procrastinate, whichever. And apparently, save up for it. Hannah, a very cool chick, was more than gracious and sweet and didn’t even talk smack back to me which I so richly deserved. She will be glad to know that the $50 spared on the 10k went to a worthy cause _ rhinestone skull & crossbones jeans for Lucy.
It feels good to take one small step for budget and humanity. I wonder how long it will last. Because I could really use some new running shoes.
That’s how I roll.
Song of the Day: Sticky Situation _ The Jane Carrey Band
As I’ve been running and all that, I do it motivated by telling myself how great I am, but also, by composing brilliant playlists. We start off with the funny stuff, and then work in some fabulous Mash UPs in there, and then when I’m just not quite halfway, I hit it hard with the motivational stuff. Then back home with rap tunes. Tupac, Ludacris, Snoop Dogg, and Busta Rhymes really speak to me.
So, I’m running several weeks ago, and I’ve got a new tune you’ve probably heard of, Good Life by One Republic. It’s catchy. However, I’ve only listened to it when running. And when I get to the song, I’m needing that motivation I just mentioned and I’m well, I’m tired, I’m lugging my thunder thighs through town on a run, and I’m out of breath. The key to tunes while you run is that it’s loud enough to drown out the panic of your exercise induced asthma attack. So, you know, sometimes my mind wonders. Sometimes I hear things different, and sometimes I work with the music and perhaps over interpret the lyrics.
On top of that, my pal Carrie used to do this thing where she’d mess up what you’d say, just to be funny. “Your Aunt Betty drinks mimosas?” No Carrie, I said “I’m sweaty, I stink and I’m gross, Uhg.” I miss my girl, and sometimes find myself doing it just to feel closer.
There’s a part in the song that goes,
To my friends in New York, I say hello.
My friends in L.A they don’t know.
Where I’ve been for the past few years or so:
Paris to China to Colorado….
But that last line I just wasn’t getting. Against most peoples’ better judgement, (I’m pretty sure this is the post where Ricardo justifies his nickname for anonymity) I’m going to out my sick mind to you right now. For a solid week, I ran to this song and thought the lyrics were:
My friends in New York say hello.
My friends in L.A. they don’t know
Where I’ve been for the past few years of so:
Mary’s vagina to Colorado.
Now, I don’t know who Mary is, but must be one heck of a girlfriend to compare her lady bits to the majestic mountains of Colorado. Where the hell did that come from? Maybe it was a jab at an EX_girlfriend named Mary. I mean, if Taylor Swift is writing all those songs about all those ex’s…. I think the rap tunes are skewing my lyric filtering a bit. But leave it to this rock band to sneak in the word vagina. Edgy, guys. Very edgy. And that’s what I mean by my mind wandering _ I’ve just analyzed my wrong interpretation of the lyrics on a 20 minute run.
Still, whether it’s Paris to China or Mary’s vagina, still fits in the lyrics. In fact, I think mine are better. Why does it have to be three geographic locations? Why not places you’ve been being interpretive and comparable to your intimate relationships. Brilliant. Brilliant I say!
Sadly, eventually I figured it out. I Googled the song lyrics. (I do not recommend Googling Mary’s vagina. Ew.)
So, now, every time you hear the song, you’ll probably revert to my version. You’re welcome.
That’s how I roll: creatively wrong.
Song of the day: Doi, it’s Good Life by OneRepublic (Just for fun, I tagged two different versions on here. The one in the text is a remix with B.O.B. the one here in Song of the Day is the one I run to.)
Somewhere on the run at the Omaha Triathlon, I decided to up my training game. I’ve been a bit complacent with my “Just train enough to finish upright without medic assistance” gig. And while running uphill, it occurred to me that perhaps running indoors is not a good training strategy for outdoor races.
So, now that our triathlon season 3 is over, I’m doing the Couch To 5K program with my very precious friend who has pretty much never run in her entire life. I thought it would be fun to be encouraging. But 13 weeks into the 24_week program, it’s apparent _ I’m the one encouraged.
Every day I don’t wanna run, and every day I think of my pal _ Korten (that’s what the kids have always called her) _ who had the courage to let me train with her _ from miles away. We’ve been texting, Facebooking, instant messaging and calling each other with reports. The first week starts out to just walk for 5 minutes. Just 5 minutes _ walk. Then one day a week, you run. Progressively, you run, adding on a few minutes, then a few days every week. With every struggle, I run knowing that Korten is doing this too, terrified with the what ifs. I have no what ifs with running, I’m just not motivated. Korten is my motivation. I’ve done every workout, every run. Well, one day, it rained and practice was cancelled. And then there was this other day I had a ridiculous gas bubble on my belly. Not the smelly kind, but the painful kind. Korten allowed me a day off on that day. I allowed her to laugh at me. In 13 weeks, I’ve probably missed 4 of our run workouts. I just start running and promise myself that if I keep going, it’ll get over with faster. And I remembered my friend doing this miles away in hotter weather, with doubt in her mind and conviction in her heart. So, I keep running.
Korten’s goal is to run a 5k _ run the whole thing. Some of y’all might think that’s nothin _ but I think it’s crazy_wack_awesome. Our first run workout was 4 minutes. She was terrified. She didn’t think she could do it. So, I suggested that she run in 30 second intervals until it added up to the assigned time. She did it! And then, pardon the pun, but she ran with it. Soon she was up to 1 minute intervals, then 2 minutes at a time. Out of nowhere, she was running more than me. She got ahead of the schedule and just went with it.
Every day, I get so excited to see her accomplishment of doing the run. My whole family anxiously awaits hearing from her. After dinner the other night, I announced “Baby, Courtney ran an entire 5k _ straight today. She did it!” We’re high_fiving each other and dancing in jubilation for my friend. On the way to her goal, I renewed my love for running _ or jogging slowly _ whatever. My friend, Korten, is a runner.
In encouraging her, I decided to restructure my lengthy conversations of motivation to more positive talk to self. To talk to myself on those runs, the way I talk to Korten. It’s helped tremendously to the point where I’m looking forward to running everyday and I think really highly of myself now.
A friend of mine from the gym saw on Facebook that I was running consistently. Perhaps it was because I was posting my run statuses to assure my gym peeps that I was indeed doing something _ just not at the gym. Anyways, a pal noticed on Facebook and caught me after a run and suggested I do the Omaha Corporate Run next Sunday. NEXT SUNDAY, Y’ALL! Was this girl crazy? No, I was. Because I was still lacking oxygen from my 2 mile run. And apparently even while jogging only two miles, it’s possible to float on a runner’s high _ and I said yes. The Corporate Run is a 10K. So, in a week, I’m gonna need to triple (yep, TRIPLE) my run workout.
It sounded like an attainable goal at the time. I calculated that if I added a half mile to my run every day _ I would be at 5.5 with even a day of rest by race day _ I could do it. At 3.0 mile workout, I got a bunch of great writing ideas. So, I stopped to write them down on my ipod. And then it was hot. And my hat was itchy. And my shoes weren’t tied just right. And it was hot. And why did I think running on a track was a good idea? BORING. Also, it turns out that the jr. high asphalt track is not cushiony enough and making it hotter. I could never quite get back into my running groove. So, I quit, resolving I’d do better the next day. I walked home and felt guilty. The next day I absolved the guilt by doing the calculated 3.5 miles. Today I ran 4 miles. Now I’m tired, my body aches and reminds me that the friend who challenged me to do this stupid 10k is 10 years younger than me.
These runs are getting further and further out. So, today, before I left, I announced, “I’m going to run in Walnut Grove Park. I’ll be about 40 minutes. If I’m not back in 45 _ you should probably call for help. Tell them to comb the woods around Walnut Grove. Are you listening? If you need to find my body, it’s in Walnut Grove.” Oh yeah, that’s why I don’t like running that far and outside. Now, I remember.
I’m almost done. Just one more mile, and I notice my pace has slowed significantly. I pass a guy who’s walked over from the retirement home close by. He’s looking at me as if to say, “Need some help, punk?” I want to ask, “Where’s your stinkin golf cart? Mamma needs a lift.” But I can’t _ not because I don’t have the nerve, but because I can’t really breathe. And also, he just passed me with his walker. I go a few more yards and sight a slow lingering incline. My gait is now that old man’s walker shuffle. I’m approaching a hill, and I can’t do it, I can’t talk myself into going another step further. All that motivation I said to Korten I just said to myself. But my legs and mostly my toes of all things _ they’re not listening. That’s when one of the voices in my head _ not the pessimist _ but a kind whispery kind of voice says to me _ “Hey Bub _ this isn’t your goal. And that’s okay.” And I stopped. I quit running, and walked up the hill. Once I crossed the street back into my subdivision, I started running again and I finished the prescribed run.
I’ll probably do the Omaha Corporate Run because I said I would. I’ll just run some and walk some. I’m actually looking forward to legally wearing my headphones in a race.
But it’s ever_apparent to me _ We can’t do what others want for us. We have to want it. We can only go for our own goals.We need to know our limits (and our hips’ limits _ apparently mine is 3.75 miles). In knowing all that, we should keep setting goals.
I’ve been complacent in my triathlon workouts and goals, motivated by Korten and renewed in my own workouts, and humbled by the fact that some goals, just aren’t for me.
That’s how I roll.
Song of the Day: It’s Okay by Cee Lo Green
Earlier this summer, we had an appliance fatality _ the toaster oven went out. And in an attempt to get the kids out of the house this summer, I decided to take the kids shopping with me. I don’t make it a practice of taking the kids to the store with me _ you’re welcome fellow Omaha community. But on this day, what with all that, “we just want to hang out” kind of summer, I thought it’d be good to get the kids out of the house for a kitchen appliance field trip.
Yeah, I said toaster oven. That little countertop mini oven thing. I love the multi_function of a toaster oven. It’s a pre_version of a microwave.
So, when we got to the toaster oven aisle, Max announces,
“Mom, I want an old timey toaster like this. Jamie has one like this.”
He points to a regular pop up toaster. Sigh _ it’s so mono_functional. They’re a bit difficult to melt cheese in.
On a side note, we are the dying breed of home owners who has bisque colored appliances. GASP! I know. But I’m not changing out my appliances until they go out. The first of which is the toaster because they don’t make bisque colored anymore. They also don’t sell VHS tapes anymore. So, I suppose I should get rid of my VHS player that clicks and hisses while in use. Perhaps it’s time.
So, I let the kids pick out a stainless steel toaster _ no oven part. Once I explained it had to be stainless steel, they shrieked in delight. “Wow, that’s REAL old timey.” The irony of it all.
Little do they know that the toaster oven came first. And that this is actually a step into a modern society. To walk in my kitchen and see a stainless steel toaster is so forward thinking and progressive. It won’t match the rest of our “still old and working” style we have going on.
I’m going to miss my broil option on the toaster for my open_faced sandwiches. I suppose I’ll have to use the old_timey bisque_colored oven.
What’s old timey in your house?
That’s how I roll.
Song of the Day: Change by Keb’ Mo’