Thursday, December 31, 2009

high fashion

Today, my sister in law is wearing tan pleated stirrup pants. With black booties with red plaid sides. She is complaining her toe hurts and her boyfriend is telling her she shouldn't wear shoes that are too small (the addendum in my head is you shouldn't buy shoes at second hand stores either...).

She lives in Brooklyn and must think this gives her a pass to be "fashion forward". Or, um, backwards by 0 years.  Regardless, Brooklyn Hipster does not equal fashionable in my mind. AND we're currently in Colorado. AND they are STIRRUP PANTS!!

She looks ridiculous. I wish I could get a photo.

Tuesday, December 29, 2009

happy christmas to me




Monday, December 28, 2009

what we did for Christmas

Christmas in our house (or, well, a week before Christmas. Maybe post-shoveling?):

Christmas with my parents:

Sunday, December 27, 2009

December snow!

This is Pennsylvania. Southeastern Pennsylvania. Snow is not THAT normal in December, and snow over a foot is downright rare. We average about 20 inches a year, and are dang close to that at this point from the snowstorm last weekend, plus the mid-month dusting!

Princess Charming likes to shovel (or at least doesn't avoid it like I do), so we only had a couple of inches to deal with in the morning. I was very busy making cookies whenever this was going on last Saturday:
Look at that! This is Philadelphia not Pittsburgh! One of the news stations said this is the biggest December storm on record, and second largest all time (following the 96 blizzard).
That's a 15! And the wind was blowing to the other side of the street - our neighbors had twice the snow we did in the morning (they shoveled out the same time as us Saturday night).

It was pretty though! Even the three inches that made it into our screened porch (apparently it was quite windy!)

Hotel Bathrooms

My dad's cousins replaced their 1950s bathroom with a very nice marble bathroom complete with separate shower and jacuzzi tub a few years ago. They must like the Sheraton bathrooms like I do...

Saturday, December 26, 2009

merry christmas

Or Happy Boxing Day. For whomever celebrates that. (Do I have any British or Canadian readers? Actually, do I have any readers...?)

In honor of the holiday, my stocking stuffer:

santa-poop-on-a-stick or chocolate dipped marshmellows? you decide.

It was tasty though.
I also got some gummi candies.

Not bad!

Princess Charming's stocking has a novel (from and a new pair of gloves (from BJ's) for work, not play. She hasn't seen the gloves yet so I hope she doesn't read this until we're back from vacation next weekend.

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

shopping (semi)fail

I am a terrible Christmas shopper. I like to shop. Really, I do. But, I kind of suck at giving gifts. My family always tended to buy things as we needed them, something that has continued into my adulthood and certainly the way Princess Charming and I handle things. We were hard pressed to get stocking stuffers. (OK, I am pretty easy to shop for. Get me wool running socks. Or earrings. Or clothes. But I don't NEED anything).

Anyway, tonight, on December 22, I went out to get my parents a present.
Started out OK. I got the last camera at the $79.99 sale price (not bad for a 10.2mp bells and whistles but it will do the job and be 10000% more effective than the "we didn't want to bring the good camera" situation they currently have). Then I waited in line for 13 minutes to get it from Customer Service.

Then I thought, "hey, I'm out, I'm 2 blocks from T.arget, let me run and get the memory card and case"

Let me remind you it is December 22.

I got to T.arget and got a spot within a reasonable range, though pretty far out for 9:43 pm.
Then I went inside.

Holy hell.
I have never seen the inside of a T.arget - much less this particular very suburban typically impeccable one - in this sort of condition. It looked like a W.almart, without the people.
I spent about 10 minutes trying to find a game for my cousins and the camera accessories, then decided I was nuts and left.

I got in the car and had a complete heart attack because the camera box was not under the seat where I left it.

Then I looked in the back seat.

Bailey - he was along for the ride...he loves a car ride and is perfectly happy to sleep in the driver's wheel well for 20 minutes in temperate weather - appearently thought it was his and chewed the ends off the box. The camera, CD and books are fine, but I sure hope my mom and dad like it...

Saturday, December 19, 2009


We're having a big storm this weekend, really early for our area too. So our excursion to NYC was canceled - a two hour drive or train ride sounds like a poor choice with 14-18 inches predicted - and I'm home working on my paper browsing the internet for deals and baking.

Princess Charming just took Bailey across the street to play in our neighbor's fenced yard with his dogs. Snow + two dogs! What more could our little guy (who spent most of the morning curled up on a pile of couch pillows, spoiled little dude) want?

I can see the three of them running around in my neighbors yard from my seat on our couch, and am filled with joy. Amusement. Something like that. Regardless, it reminds me how much I want a baby. Is that weird?

Thursday, December 10, 2009

just call me grace

You know how I'm super coordinated and athletic and move with fluid, ballerina like motion?

Stop laughing.


When I was in high school, I once fell jogging on the sidewalk. I imagine it looked like something out of a movie, a full face forward SPLAT. I tore up one palm and my left knee, and must have thrown all my weight onto my right one because it was swollen like a softball for a week (not from twisting or anything, just a huge puffy bruise). My left knee was skinned so badly - hugely - I couldn't bend it for a week until the scab started to break up. I still have a sort of round scar from it.

Then there's July 08. And June 09. When I broke my foot. Ironically enough, without falling.

Between these events, there is a lot of laughing at my general gait, my throwing arm, and my dance moves.

So tonight, I took Bailey for a 2 mile jog. We do this a few days a week in the morning or evening on the days he doesn't have an opportunity to play/sprint/get out all that adolescent energy (so pretty much 4 days a week since he usually goes to doggie day care or my friend's house once a week, and we hit the dog park on the weekend).

And around mile 0.5, I fell.

And all I did this time was give myself a little nic in my palm and a skinned my elbow (I had on a sweatshirt, so that could have been a bit worse). And I probably scared the woman who saw me fall (and was nice enough to pull over to check on me. Her 7 yr old son had his jaw on the car floor. I guess adults don't fall?).

Two points here:
1) Does anyone else find it ironic I actually fell this time and didn't actually HURT myself?
2) I am going to attribute my injury level from this graceful sidewalk experience compared to that of over a decade ago to 9 years of rugby. I might not be a particularly high level player, but at least I've learned how to fall without bodily harm (fyi, tighten your core and try to hit knees-hips-shoulders).

Wednesday, December 9, 2009


This past weekend, Princess Charming and I hosted a brunch for our college kids. Their social chair instructed them to not wear sweats and to "look cute". Apparently that means a variety of things from jeans and a tee to a skirt and high heels.

Oddly enough, both ends of this spectrum arrived in Uggs. Uggs with jeans, Uggs with skinny jeans, Uggs with a skirt, Uggs with what appeared to be an eyelet sundress (sidebar: it was 40 degrees out).

I just don't understand how these are ever cute. On anyone. Regardless of fabric.

Tuesday, December 8, 2009


Tired dog.

The only way to get this photo.

Monday, December 7, 2009

Thanksgiving, part 2

On Friday, we stopped at Block.buster with my parents to rent a couple of movies for the evening.

My mom bought these darlings for her grandkids. They're living on top of her fridge right now.

Note: she doesn't have any grandkids.

Sunday, December 6, 2009

Happy Thanksgiving

a little late.

The usual Thanksgiving, more or less.

We drove up to NJ early Thursday morning - very early, to run a 5k with my dad! He ran it in 42 minutes, which is not shabby for a guy who hadn't exercised in 30 years until his triple bypass last spring!

Then a quick stop by the HS football game (to see the marching band...and alumni...I don't march but its fun to make the pit stop)
Followed by the usual Thanksgiving festivities.

Friday we shopping, went out to lunch, and hung out with my parents. They see Princess Charming all the time, but I'm only up there every couple of months, and they (especially mom) miss me :)

Saturday we went to the city for a bachelorette party - a show (with Zach Morris and the brother from Weeds) and then dinner (the blandest Mexican I have ever had...). And we walked around the city like tourists, even though we're all pretty local. Including three journeys through Times Square. Poor planning in my opinion. We did see the tree briefly though (unlit, clearly).
And then home decorate!

and off to the holiday season!

Monday, November 30, 2009

oh, sales.

I have a secret.

I like to shop.
As in, I may have squealed said, upon seeing the massive shopping complex next to one of our hotels this season, "ooooh they might be having a sale!". (This may or may not have resulted in gales of laughter from my traveling companions).

I kind of enjoy Black Friday, and "Cyber Monday", even though I hardly buy any holiday gifts. This year I did get a sweet dress for upcoming weddings, and Princess Charming got some new work shirts.
I tried on some amazing shoes, but I just can't justify the cost when they're not really (ok, not at all) work appropriate).

So today, I've been browsing...kind of a lot. I did get us a bag for our boards for our upcoming snowboarding trip (which we have a legit need for!), but mostly just daydreaming...some of these things I don't even have a USE for...

Sunday, November 22, 2009

Philly Half - Race Review

So, as you might know, I wasn't exactly properly trained for this half. But, since I had paid (and I paid as missed the PDR in September) I decided to do it anyway. I picked up my packet on Friday (along with packets for three friends - I looked a bit like a nut on the subway with four race bags!) and was a little saddened. I love the atmosphere of expos for big races - so many people, so much fun gear. And it is hard to go into a race knowing I won't be trying for my best.

But what happened this fall happened, and onto Sunday I went. After twenty minutes of circling for parking with my two NJ friends, we found a spot between two food trucks at the community college and walked to the start. 15 semi-stressful minutes later, we found the gear trucks and I was able to hand off bag #4 to another NJ friend! I got in the port-a-potty line, but then the start announcements began and I abandoned it.

It took about 15 minutes to move all the way up to the start. But off we went. Pretty thick crowd, lots of excitement. But, I still needed to pee! (Wasn't just on line for fun!) Three port-a-pottie stops later, I found one with only 3 people in I only lost 3 or 4 minutes for the stop. And off I went again.

I hit a grove at about a 10 min pace, about a minute slower than most of my halfs and over 90 seconds off my PR pace. I felt pretty good until about mile 4, when my hamstrings started getting tight. We were running all over Center City, so it was relatively entertaining, though I imagine I would have been more amused and remember more details if I wasn't a (more or less) local.

Around then, I started planning when I'd change to a walk-run plan. I was thinking 5 min run/1 min walk intervals. I decided I'd start after the half way point, which is roughly around the bridge crossing into West Philly. But then I decided I didn't want to run through Drexel with walk intervals on the off change one of my college kids saw me (I get a little irrational in races). They were all headed to their championships at this point, but I did pass their Club Sports Coordinator!

Somewhere in this region, my hip started hurting. I was considering starting the intervals when I hit an aid station, and the water and short walk to drink it motivated me along. I told myself that around mile 10, the 3/4 point, I'd start the run walk intervals. Then we hit the park, and this big hill. I assume it has a name, but I don't recall. It was long, but not as steep as I remembered from last year, so I somehow powered through it.

By this point, I was hungry. One of the side effects from poor training is a lack of fueling knowledge. Lucky me, the race volunteers were handing out Gu at the top! Too bad it was espresso. I did force down half a packet, and it helped.

Around this point, I starting thinking, 5k left, 5k left. Not exactly true, and when I hit the bottom of the downhill, my hip pain migrated to my back, and I pretty much hit a wall (who knew such existed in a half?). The downhill leading up to the mile 10 marker was a bit rejuvenating though, so I made it to mile 11 before actually beginning the 5 min/1 min intervals! Not bad for someone who's last real long run was 8 miles 4 weeks ago. The last couple of miles was tough with burning legs, but I made it. I even had a decent kick at the end.

According to my watch, I snuck in under 2:15, which is by far my worst half (of those I've run - Princess Charming and I run/walked a couple over the last year amid injuries). But, given the circumstances, a 10:16 pace is ok. And, I am telling myself it is a training run for my Jan. half - I PRd at the 3M in 2008, at 1:52. I'd love to beat that...

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

10 years

I was a freshman in 1999. I was over 1500 miles from home, at a school that had a lot of spirit and a lot of school-spirited traditions.

One of these was the Aggie Bonfire, built over the course of the fall semester each year for what was essentially a 70,000 person pep rally prior to the annual Texas A&M/UT football game.
I never saw it burn, as the 1999 Bonfire collapsed a week prior to Burn while being built, killing 12 students and injuring at least 27 more. I can't succinctly explain what happened on campus in the weeks and months that followed, how the climate changed over the next few years (hello, Risk Management), how the on-campus culture was completely different from my freshman year to my last year as an RA several years later. I wish I could; I am sure it would make a fabulous case study.

What I can tell you is I can't believe it has been ten years. I am glad that there is a student led Bonfire now (from what I gathered on my FB news feed), and that the tradition has continued, modified as it is. At a school where tradition dictates which patches of grass you can and cannot walk on, losing Bonfire all together would be another tragedy. I am kind of sad that the website that used to have a camera watching Build now has links to the annual ceremonies - I wonder how long these will happen, and if it makes sense - and to posters of the (ugly) memorial and remembrance teeshirts (what?).

But I am perhaps most overwhelmed with perspective. At 18, I didn't grasp the outcry for why the University didn't oversee the project more, why wasn't the structure certified by PEs, why, why, why? At 18, I agreed with the arguement it was built by smart students who learned how to safely build from their predecessors. That they would do anything to keep the tradition alive. After all, they were outside at 2:43 am building it. That's dedication, right?

But at 28, I have perspective, perhaps parental perspective without the overwhelming love of parents. As a university administrator and a sports team administator, those questions of Why are really clear. Why WASN'T the University more involved? Alumni politics? A preferance for a blind eye? I am not sure. But when I think about the 12 kids - kids, really - that died, it is heart breaking. Most of them, 8 I think, were freshman. 3 lived in the dorm where I was an RA for the following 3 years. Without even being among their friends, I can tell you with the utmost confidence what an impact on their friends and roommates and others those three, and their deaths, had. There is still a memorial at that dorm. I hope it stands long after the building (already a bit old and crumbly 10 years ago, thanks to shoddy 1960s we-need-space construction).

It occured to me in class yesterday, when the topic came up in passing, that if it were to happen here, today, it could be my kids. Not my literal kids, as I certainly don't have college aged children, but the kids at work or the kids I coach or the kids on the all star teams I work with. And that breaks my heart. I cannot imagine what it was like for the parents of those who died, how any parent survives losing a child. The thought something happenning to my college kids, the thought of the mortality of my little 18 and 20 year olds, who are so innocent, so full of life and promise, literally brings me to tears.

Sunday, November 15, 2009

finger crossed

So today I did a 10 miler.
Sort of.
I did 2 miles with the pup in the morning, 3.75 miles midday while refereeing, and 4.25 when I got home. I feel ok. My legs are a little tired. I am entertaining doing all my taper week mileage together (11 miles) on Tuesday then doing cross training wed/thurs as final prep for my half on Sunday.

Last year I'd registered for this race a week before breaking my foot, so Princess Charming and I run/walked it in about 2:30. I REALLY wanted to make this my race "back," to break 2 hours...but all these issues...sigh. I'm thinking 2:15ish. Really though, I'll be happy with doing it unhurt, just as a training run for my Jan half that I WILL BE well trained for.

On the upside, the game today was pretty fun to ref. Two newly minted all-stars teams, the MARFU U20s who are headed to Florida for U20 NASCs, and the EPRU U23s who will head to the MARFU Round Robin next weekend. Nothing like young kids who don't know each other playing together...quite the study in melding teams and cultures and egos.

Tuesday, November 10, 2009


Sometimes I hate that I am a part time student.
I like my classes SO much more than my job.
I enjoy, in a masochistic way, writing multiple 20 page papers every semester.
I am infinitely jealous of my classmates who go to conferences in fun places like Vancouver on our advisor's (school funded) dime to do cool things like present and things I hate but should do like mingle and smooze network with folks in the field.

But on some level I know I am not meant to be an academic and the professional doctorate is the right choice. And I know that if I were a full time student we couldn't have our house, couldn't do the little bit of traveling we do, and I'd be even further behind on my retirement...

But. Le Sigh. Today, I would much rather be a full time student.

Monday, November 9, 2009

maybe it'll be ok?

I ran 8 miles today - 3 this morning and 5 tonight. And I feel good. It is unfortunate I had a couple of lazy weeks, and then the weird back/hip thing... my hip is still tight, but I feel good.

My plan this week is to get my other 3 in (this week is supposed to be 3, 5, 3, 12), do 10 miles on Wed (probably 5 & 5 - AM and midday or AM/PM), take Thurs/Fri off and do 10-12 on Saturday morning. I know its a LOT considering my record this last month or so, but I really just need to do 2 10 milers to feel ok about this race (splitting it up isn't ideal...but at least it will be done, right?)

I really want to hit 2 hours, but it is SO unlikely seeing as my runs have been around 9:40s, and that is a 9:09 pace! Oh well. Maybe if I get on the ball with training I can still aim for my PR in Austin in Jan (which would be a 1:52)...

any encouragement? has anyone done a successful (in your eyes) race with screwy training?

Sunday, November 8, 2009

weekend in pictures

Fabulous Friday Night Dinner (Indian!)

Old Friend's Bridal Shower
Collegiate Playoffs!

EPRU Division IV Champs!

Saturday, November 7, 2009


Our pup was a rescue, and his litter had a bad case of pavo before we adopted him (2 of the 7 didn't make it). Bailey is quite a robust dog, but this summer developed a wart which the vet said was related to the pavo, and had a bad enough bout of diarrhea to warrant a trip to the vet (which is, actually, where the ugly wart was finally diagnosed...since it wasn't bothering him - for a month - we'd let it go).

Some chicken and rice, powdered food sprinkles and some sort of pill later, he was fine. But two months later, the diarrhea is back. It could be anything - eating a weird mushroom in the yard perhaps - but it has been a day and is starting to concern me. Back to chicken and rice tomorrow, and powered sprinkles on the food (we did the last pill already)....lets hope we don't need another ($$) vet trip. He's lapping down the water, so I'm hoping he stays hydrated.

But I am worried a bit. Ok, perhaps I spent 30 min on the floor petting him in front of the heat vent where he likes to hang out. But I want him to be ok, even if he is a little annoying at full energy. How will I function with a sick kid??

Friday, November 6, 2009

Sesame Street

I loved this show as a kid. And I hope my kids love it. It is one of the few kids shows tolerable for adults thanks to clever writing with parodies and a lack of super annoying songs on repeat.

Happy Birthday! I hope you can stick around for another 40 years, even if you are no longer focusing on urban kids and are a little bit PC. Your recent gem (GNN v Pox News... which was good enough to make NPR, and hence make me look for it online) is amazing.

Also, love:


My hip is still having problems. My back is pretty much ok now, but my hip is so tight I stopped my run tonight at the 1.5 mile mark and rode the bike for 30. I really hope I can fix this by starting to stretch (I never stretch. It is a problem). Not only do I want to run Philly in two weeks - and need at least two long runs between now and then since I missed two! - I want to be WELL trained for Austin in Jan... :(

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


Bailey has been really good the last year about only chewing on his toys. Except for the occasional pair of underwear plucked from the laundry, but otherwise, really good.

The last 8 weeks or so we've even stopped crating him most days. And he's been good! Sure, the couch cushions get shoved around (how else can he get to the window to watch me drive away and abandon him for 10 hours?). Sure, his treat bag gets plucked off the 4 ft high hook (hey, I want a midday snack too. Though I don't jump 2.5 feet for it...). But he has a bladder of steel and is beyond happy to see me when I get home, so things have been good.

Then about two weeks ago, he learned to open the front closet. (It slides, he doesn't have thumbs for turning door knobs).
Over the next two weeks, one at a time, he ate two pairs of my running shoes (thankfully, both nearing the end of their lives). These were cool shoes (see stock photo below. I somehow didn't have the heart neglected to record their demise). Why else would I buy two identical pairs within a month of each other?
I am 100% sure I will never find perfectly fitting python print running shoes again.

He's also pulled out Princess Charming's shoes, but hasn't as much as nibbled on them. So, I assumed I just have tasty foot sweat. My new running shoes are safely upstairs, so I let it be.

Then I got home Monday.
The new fall mail/key/remote control basket was on the floor. Up the stairs. Down the stairs. All over. You get the picture.

Also all over, in lots of bitty rain boots! ARGH!

Then Tuesday. Happy Halloween for the pup, who pulled the bowl of leftover candy off of (the middle of) the dining room table and proceeded to pick out all of the mini Reeses. And unwrap them for a midday snack. He was really neat about it - every foil wrapper had the paper wrapper neatly inside of them. I really wish I had a photo of this, but I cleaned it up in a mild fury (and I also searched for signed of doggie chocolate rejection, of which there were, thankfully, none).

And then today.

Today Bailey apparently got bored. The stuffed kong and two PB dipped nylabones were not enough. Today, we moved on to the couch.

Specifically, the lower right corner of each of the three cushions that make up the back of the couch. Example (all three look oddly alike):

While he is looking adorable sleeping on the couch next to me right now, exhausted from a long day of a walk, sleeping, chewing on furniture for the first time, visiting his friends at the PetSmart hotel, and playing with new balls, you can BET he will not be left uncrated again for at least a few days. Sad!


WTF Maine? And also you Washington?

I still do not see why matters of equality should be put to the vote.

If we did that historically, we would have a much different society right now.

Can anyone explain to me how this is ok for sexual orientation and not ok for race and gender?

Tuesday, November 3, 2009

I have a problem

I am obsessed with the blondies sold by the coffee shop in my building.

Obsessed to the point the cashier tells me on occasion, "You really love those." Or, doesn't tell me the total and just waits for my money. Thank goodness I don't have cash more than a couple of days a week...

Fabulous, but not great for the fitting into the pants project (since its not like I don't eat cookies at home if I have a blondie at work!).

Monday, November 2, 2009

every day?

I am thinking about doing the NaBloPoMo challenge. (That is a horrible nickname for National Blog Posting Month and not easy to say.). Do I have enough things to talk about?

Sunday, November 1, 2009

getting nervous

My half marathon is in three weeks. This was supposed to be my race "back," my uninjured half marathon I could actually train for and actually "race"(for whatever racing means when your half PR is about an 8:20 mile and the only person you're really trying to beat is the 50 year old overweight guy who looks like he might keel over with every step).

I have run once in 2 weeks. For 27 minutes. 9x400 intervals.
My hip/what I imagine to be sciatica has had some issues for the last few weeks, and last weekend during a disastrous 20 minutes playing loose head prop, I tweaked something in my back. It was feeling better till my run Thursday...I popped a couple Advil and reffing a college game went ok on Saturday. I was technically supposed to run 8-10 miles today, but didn't get to that.

On the upside, I am seeing the doctor about this tomorrow. And I know I can still finish the half. And I think if I get all my mileage in the next 2.5 weeks, I can still come in around 2 hours. But probably not UNDER 2 hours like I wanted.

But it is time, now that rugby is (half, coaching isn't) over, to get back on track! I have 13 weeks to the Austin half and WILL PR there!
Do all three midweek runs!
Run 9-11 miles on Sunday no matter how long it takes or if I have to do run/walk intervals!

Friday, October 30, 2009


I ran for the first time in 10 days yesterday. 9x400. With walk breaks (1 min/interval), came out to just under a ten minute pace. Not bad for basically 2min/1 min walk runs! Now I wonder if I can keep that up outside...

This week I have 2 5s and an 8 or 10 (depending on which schedule I follow) to finish between now and run/day. I hope my back/hip twinging lets up so I can do this. Otherwise, I'll be in bad shape for the half seeing as I ran naught last week!

Tuesday, October 27, 2009


I kind of suck this week and need to get my act together. Case(s) in point:

I haven't run in over a week. I have a half marathon in under a month. Under 4 weeks actually. Oops.

I skipped class tonight.
Because I hadn't written my paper.
For my capstone doctoral course (I have 2 more classes left but whatever).
Which my advisor is teaching.
I told her I was sick.
I came home, went to the dog park, spent 2 hours playing with the dog who thinks I abandoned him by leaving for work and gave me the option of paying attention or having him bark at me (he never barks. unless he feels ignored), then wrote 4 bad pages to add to the two crummy ones I wrote on the train, and turned in 6 pages of what was supposed to be a draft of 8-10 pages. Thank goodness it is not graded. Just mortifying.

I forgot we are having a baby shower/potluck at work tomorrow. I stopped on the way home and bought a super cute baby outfit and soft photo album (its cool, really), and given my state of mind, sprung for a $5 gift bag. Also super cute, but $5?? Then I went next door and bought fresh mozzarella. Who brings cheese, just cheese, to a potluck? I will eat it all though and not be sad if no one else does. I'd make some quick cookies, but 1 am bed sounds like a bad idea seeing as I fell asleep on the train the last two evenings.

I sincerely hope I do not have an assignment due in my class tomorrow afternoon - I am not checking till the morning, since clearly I cannot resolve such an issue at 11:38 pm - and I also really need to run. Or I might melt into my couch. Then my laundry basket will officially spill onto the floor, and the buildup on my un-vacuumed-for-a-week carpet will start walking (WHY do people buy wall to wall carpet? AND put it on stairs? why?)

Sunday, October 25, 2009

the packing problem

I have a packing problem. Regardless of where I go, I fill my bag to the brim. One day at the shore - two changes of clothes in the backpack. Vacation? Every inch of the bag is stuffed. I try to control this by only using a carry on for anything under a week. But I still tend to bring too much stuff. See this weekend:

Including what I wore coming up to Boston, I brought:
my rugby kit (shorts, socks (2), spandex (2), warm up tee, shoulder pads, cleats)
pj pants
Adidas snap pants
3 pairs each socks and undies & 2 sports bras
2 long sleeve shirts
2 tees
1 tank top.
Oh, and my bathing suit.

BUT, though I'm probably a smidge overpacked, I figure its good to be prepared. Since its wet this weekend, I'm going through socks and my Adidas pants are sure to be wet post-game and not good to ride home in (and I don't ride home in jeans!).

And although I'll preface this by saying I appreciate a good shopping trip and hair salon as much as the next girl (probably not as much as the next girly girl though) - and am currently in the market for a nice sweater dress, a couple more sweaters and maybe a nice pair of camel or gray boots - there is something freeing about not even packing minimal makeup (aka mascara) or a round brush to blow dry with. There is enough of all of that during the week.

Saturday, October 24, 2009

going for gold

We are at the National Championships this weekend. Today, we played Detroit. Much closer game than we were hoping for, and less subs than we hoped, so unfortunately, some of our roster of TWENTY EIGHT probably won't play this weekend.

But, amid cheering from our gaggle of traveling fans, we WON 10-5.

Onward to Atlanta! We went into this event seeded 3rd in our union, 6th overall, despite tying the ATL in league season points since we lost to them. Boo. But tomorrow, the opportunity for redemption!

Saturday, October 17, 2009

new plans

My plans for this week/weekend are completely in disarray.

First, I was having some pain this week, so I skipped my 8 and 4.5 milers Wed/Thurs, thinking I'd be walking 60 miles and needed to treat my body well.

Then, the 3-day walk was changed to a 1-day due to the ongoing poor weather in the area. My teammates definitely trained better than I did, and are considering walking San Diego instead. While we can still walk Sunday's 15 miles, we are missing out on the whole experience (which my blogger teammate greatly summarized).

I am a bit torn about what to do tomorrow. Friday I ended up working from home and doing the 4.5 mile run, and today I went to rugby practice and shopped and am currently sitting on the couch watching tv. Do I do my 8 mile run tomorrow in lieu of walking 15? Its supposed to be 42 and an 95% chance of rain. It rained about half of today, including a steady downpour for practice, and frankly, while moving keeps you warm if you're properly dressed, it does not keep you dry. And wet feet are cold feet. So perhaps then you're not actually warm...And while I KNOW cold does not MAKE you sick, I have some reservations about doing that given my life-commitments and how I sincerely cannot afford to get sick!

I wish the weather had cooperated and not given me these crummy options. I feel like a disappointment to all of my generous donors if I don't walk. Then again, the 3-day site is pretty adamant about the goal of the event being fund-raising...and that we did!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009


What a busy two weekends coming up...

19% to go to goal!! Click to donate!
Help me reach my goal for the Philadelphia Breast Cancer 3-Day!


2009 Women's Rugby Championships!

That's 2 nights of camping and 60ish miles of walking (in 50 degree highs and probably rain!) over three days...
Then a week later, a 6 hr drive, two BIG games, and hopefully planning for the finals!

Sunday, October 11, 2009

3 for 6

I fancy myself a runner. I am not particularly fast, but I've done OK at long distances. My half PR is 1:52 and change, and I've done two full marathons slightly under 4:30, which I think is respectable for a "casual" runner.

But then I broke my foot in July 2008. By the time I was out of the boot and cleared, it was our wedding, then rugby season, then winter...I ran on and off, and somehow did two half marathons on very minimal training (both run/walked with Princess Charming around 2:30). Then after the crush of spring classes & rugby, I started training for the Philly Distance Run. And promptly broke my foot, slightly, again. Scratch that.

But fast forward. Healed, I think, again. Rugby is in full swing, school is in full swing, and I have, um, a job. But because I am insane, I am also training for the Philadelphia Half Marathon.

I just finished week 6. This is the third week of 6 I've completed my mileage. The other 3 I was missing at least one run (one week was a tournament, one week I was sick, and one week I was just lazy).

Weekly Distances
10/5/2009 — 10/11/2009: 17.0 Mi 2:42:39
9/28/2009 — 10/4/2009: 12.1 Mi 1:54:49
9/21/2009 — 9/27/2009: 14.5 Mi 2:16:03
9/14/2009 — 9/20/2009: 10.6 Mi 1:39:56
9/7/2009 — 9/13/2009: 6.0 Mi 55:08
8/31/2009 — 9/6/2009: 11.7 Mi 1:46:37

So for the next 6 weeks, I need to develop some discipline and be sure to get all 4 runs/week in, rain, dark, rugby or 3-day walk!

Due to my bad planning and backloading runs this past week, that means I will not have a rest day for 12 straight days (oops). Monday-Thurs will need to be runs this week, including a Wednesday long run of 8 miles, to accommodate the 45 miles of walking at the 3day walk this weekend! For full disclosure though, I'll probably swap in some interval training for part of my short run mileage this week - it IS peak rugby season after all, and intervals are so much more fun than 4.5 miles straight!

Tuesday, October 6, 2009

in the home stretch

The 3 Day Walk for Breast Cancer is next weekend! I'm working with my team to plan our packing list and travel. Lots to figure out - clothes for 3 days + nights in the tent, blister prevention, evening activities, what to do about school work when I can't use my computer for a whole weekend (ok, this isn't a huge issue - I rarely do school work on the weekend)...

And $700 more to raise! I'm a 71% of my goal!

Want to donate? Click below!

Help me reach my goal for the Philadelphia Breast Cancer 3-Day!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Dear Fall

Hi Fall,

I want to start this by saying I love you a lot. I like the heat, but the humidity, not as much. And I don't like rain. So generally speaking, you're my best friend season. You're also the time of football and marching band and back to school and new clothes and watching the leaves turn on Garret Mountain during practices that are chilly enough to wear sweats. Ok, maybe that last part is over ten years ago, but once a band geek, always a band geek.

(Think I'm kidding? My band-geek-ness was immortalized in a tee-shirt around 2006)

But, fall, I have to tell ya, I wasn't super excited about the 48 degrees this morning. That means its only 16 more to freezing, and me and winter aren't on the best of terms. Can you keep it between, lets say, 50 and 75 till at least the end of October? Mid-November would be even better because rugby practice gets a bit awkward in sweatsuits (I don't need else anything slowing me down!).



Monday, September 28, 2009

weekend in pictures


Sad veggie buffalo wings because I got to the grocery store too late

Lots of riding in rented mom-mobiles

Philadelphia Takes Boston

on travel

We travel quite a bit. Historically, more for rugby than for work or personal (not that rugby isn't personal but it's not vacation)...

When you travel for work, you expect decent hotels (even if they have weird features). For personal travel, its up to you. Generally, we go with cheapo places if we're only passing through - how much will you enjoy a hotel if you arrive at midnight and are leaving at 8 am? - and a nicer place on the rare actual vacation.

My last rugby trip was in March, to Nashville. We stayed at a Super 8. The sheets on my bed had a couple of holes, the kind of holes you get from wear-and-tear and excessive laundering. There was a bottle opener on the back of the bathroom door. But the hotel was clean and had a decent breakfast and I think even had a pool.

Then Princess Charming and I went on our belated honeymoon. On the way home, we spent a couple of days in Seattle and stayed at a lovely joint (free on my credit card points!). Remember my love of their bathrooms? All that sparkle and light. This was the sort of hotel with white linens, multiple pillows, and a separate seating area. And a closet with doors.

This past weekend, I traveled with my rugby team to Boston for a league match. After a few hours of searching - literally - I found a Travelodge about 25 miles west of the field, right on our way in, that had 10 available rooms for the low low price of $92.50/night. If we only had 1 or 2 people per room it would only have been $68/night. Why do 2 more people cost almost $25 more? Its not like they remove beds if less people are sleeping there...and we certainly didn't use $12.50 in electricity and water each, nor in free breakfast cereal. (Maybe next time I should fib when making reservations?) We didn't even use the back-of-bathroom door bottle openers.

I looked for perhaps the first time in my life with disdain upon the multi-color with no particular pattern bedspread. I briefly considered wearing sandals in the shower (I decided this was a level of paranoia I am not ready for). I complained at some length about our beds being made up with only bottom sheets, so that as I tossed and turned all night on the hard plank posing as a mattress, I eventually had skin to mattress contact (and probably woke up my roommates, causing their own noisy tossing about).

This hotel also had a Beary Sleepy Suite, which by amazing luck of the draw, became the coaches room. Why does this room even exist? Do people leave their kids in a first floor room of a motel with exterior doors and hope they'll be happy with the bear-themed curtains and bedspread, kid-sized chairs and cable? It wasn't even a connecting room!

I am also pretty sure that this hotel, nestled in the shadow of a Crown Plaza in the middle of a fairly nice suburban shopping district, is the locale of choice for locals soliciting ladies of the night. Why you ask? When I went to get a duplicate key, this is the conversation of the "gentleman" in front of me:

Man: Do you have any rooms for tonight? Blah blah blah, I'm paying in cash.
Desk Clerk: Sure Guy's Name. (He walked in right before me and had not presented ID).
Man: OK great. Sure is busy here tonight.
Desk Clerk: Blah Blah blah, I'll give you Room 115. I have a couple of customers who really like that room.

Hence my conclusion. If I'm wrong, then let's move to conclusion B...
He's a) having an affair (hence the cash payment) and b) is a cheap bastard. (If you're treating your spouse like crap, at least meet your mistress someplace nice.)

What I learned this weekend:
I am becoming a snob finding myself to be a more discerning consumer.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009


As I am endlessly proud of our kitchen makeover, I submitted it to The DIY Show Off. And I've been featured here! Awesome :)

Sunday, September 20, 2009

weekend in pictures

I saw this over at Life on 19th and love the concept. I'm going to give my version a whirl.

Friday night
couch & movie (& Wii) with Princess Charming

first game for the college team we coach (and more couch/Wii time!)

fundraiser at the football dogs, pretzels and bad beer galore for fans in bad outfits.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

ing distance run

I picked up my packet today. I last ran the Philly Distance Run in Sept. 07, and it is still my favorite of the half marathons I've run. Its a great course through Center City and around the river (which is a path I used to train on all the time when we lived there). My race packet even included a snazzy - and very orange - tech tee.

But sadly, no run for me in the morning. The tiny fracture from late June impeded my training, and I'm looking at a long run (prep for my Nov half) of 5 miles tomorrow, not 13.1. Since I can't run, I'm glad I had a coupon for the race fee, but its still an expensive tee shirt...though I got lovely new cranberry running shoes on sale at the expo too, so I guess its a wash! I often search high and low for a decent sale! Good, supportive running shoes are just never sold at places like Kohls that discount all their merchandise 50% every other weekend!

Instead of a nice run with 16,000 friends in beautiful weather and getting a new medal for my coatrack, I am spending the day at a rugby fundraiser. There is truly no way I'd rather spend my Sunday than inside Stand 134 of the Linc serving $4 popcorn that is delivered to us in trash bags and trying to pour $6 Coors Light drafts and get a cup full of foam. In fact, I think these fundraisers are so amazing, I wish I could work them every weekend. And, my teammates will join me for a broken pretzel and (that weird never solid) cheese (that no one in their right mind would every eat anyplace but a sporting event). Sadly I only have one more to work this year to fulfill my requirements - the Army-Navy game in December!

(shh, but I did kind of enjoy the Army-Navy game last year. Our stand is in the middle of the cadets, so it was entertaining.)