Friday, May 30, 2008

What's the matter here?

Before I get into the post for the day, I have a game for all of you who (wonderfully) read this blog. I have decided to begin each post with a fitting song title or lines from a song. You have to figure out who it is and/or what song it's from. I've done it for a lot of my posts, now I'm just going to do it for all of them since when I start writing something, I start singing a song that goes with the theme of the post. I thought it would be nice to share my craziness.

Now, onto my soapbox...

What the hell is wrong with people? Seriously, where in life do people go from sweet, innocent kids to horrible assholes? I'm not saying everyone is an asshole, but there are a lot of them out there and they know who they are.

My good friend Lynne had some terrible luck over the Memorial Day weekend. She, her husband, and daughter were in Tennessee visiting her dad and some friends. She got a call from her neighbor informing her that their cars had been vandalized Saturday night at around 9:30 or so. WTF? Since they were hours away and there wasn't much they could do, they stayed for the remainder of their trip, arriving home Sunday night. This is what they came home to:

Can you believe that crap? Seriously, what is wrong with people?

I'm not going to go into the entire story. But I saw Lynne last night and they may have caught the MIDDLE SCHOOL kids that have done this. Yes, I said middle school. I'm sorry, but when I was 10, 11, 12 I wasn't allowed out once it was dark without a parent. I don't care if that's ridiculous, but kids that young shouldn't be allowed out at 9:30 at night (obviously). And where are these kids' parents? I know this is just paint and no one was hurt, but it's an intense sense of violation when something you have is either damaged or taken from you, regardless of if it was a random act (this was) or not. That's how I felt when my identity was stolen. You just feel like nothing is yours and there are people lurking everywhere waiting to pounce. I still feel emotional about it and it's been almost 3 years. I can't even talk about it without starting to tremble and wanting to vomit. It's a crappy way to live.

So, where does this leave us? As a parent, it is all the more reason to be involved and engaged with my child. To let him know we love him and care about him. To know where he is at all times. As a person, it is all the more reason to pay attention to what people are doing around you. Know your neighbors and report things that are suspicious. And love the kids in your life. Maybe if these kids had more love and parents that actually gave a crap about what they were doing, this wouldn't have happened.

Onto more happy things: my parents are currently en route to my house! Yay! I have a girls-night planned for tomorrow night. Yay! It's Friday. Yay!

I just always have to end on a happy note.

Thursday, May 29, 2008


So, I think there is something wrong with me. Besides the obvious, of course. No, the current problem is that I don't really have a lot to say. Some people are surely on their knees thanking God at the moment.

Could it be? Could my talkativeness be subsiding? I have always been a very chatty person. All my report cards in school said that I was a great student, though I never shut up.

I don't know, I feel like I have a lot to say but then I just don't feel like saying it. Is that the height of laziness or what? There are things I try to make a point to remember to tell people but then I just don't.

Like right now, I'm pretty much grasping at the air for something to write about. I have been trying to write this post for like 20 minutes or something. I'm basically just posting this because I haven't posted anything in a few days. Oh well. Maybe I just don't have anything to say right now. My parents are coming for a visit tomorrow, so hopefully something exciting will happen for me to write about. Actually, come to think of it, I'm going out with the girls Saturday night to see Sex in the City. That will certainly spark some conversation.

Until then, enjoy the silence!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

Honk if you love three-day weekends...

Three-day weekends rock.

This past Memorial Day weekend was so nice! The only way it would have been better is if a briefcase with $1 million was left on our doorstep. Sadly, this did not happen and I think I just depressed myself. Oh well.

After work on Friday, once we were all home, we headed up to Costco in Frederick. We have been waiting to purchase a flat-screen TV for years. I wasn't working when they first came on the scene. They were just way too expensive and I couldn't see buying one at all. But this year marked John's 10th year with his organization and he received a nice bonus. Because this is a bonus, you're supposed to have fun with it. You know, he earned it. We went to Costco because they have excellent prices and they also extend the manufacturer's warranty for another year. Plus, the membership we have with Costco allows us to earn cash back on our annual purchases. Basically, Costco rocks. But I digress.

The TV is awesome! Seriously, I've never been a big electronics person and even I'm impressed. And Keller loves it! He was pretty mesmerized as he watched Sesame Street for the first time. I have a great photo of it and will post it when I get home tonight.

Saturday we went to breakfast with Mary and Noah, then played at the park for a while. Keller took a 4-hour nap, which was nice for everyone! We then went to the Washingtonian to walk around and enjoy the beautiful weather. Saturday night I went to dinner to say goodbye to my good friend, Stephanie. She is off to Connecticut to become the owner of the Fleet Feet Sports, Hartford store. I am very excited for her, but will miss her terribly. She left yesterday and I miss her already.

Sunday, we went to the park with Mary, Steve, and Noah in the morning. We went to Black Hills park and I think we'll have Keller's birthday party there this year. Anyway, we brought Lola with her (in her Memorial Day collar, of course). Somehow, she became a show pony and at one point, half the kids at the park were crowded around her to see her and pet her. Um, she's a dog. A Black Lab at that. It's not like she just landed from Mars and has green fur and is a sight to see. Don't get me wrong, Lola is pretty darn cute. Maybe it was her collar.

Sunday afternoon, we had friends over for a cookout. That was fun. I love the chaos of having people over. Kids running around, music playing, all of us together. You can't beat it.

Monday, we went to the pool in the morning. We got a pass for the pool in a nearby community because ours community doesn't have a pool. While the water was freezing, it was still nice. And somehow I managed to get sunburn on one of my shoulders (the left one). Guess I missed with the sunblock spray. Monday afternoon, we went over to Allison and Phil's for another cookout. It was great to have all of us together (the Silberman, Gies, and Gill families!). I'm looking forward to this summer.

So, this brings me to the question: why can't we have three-day weekends every week? Really, are we really that productive on Fridays? Or Mondays, for that matter? Especially in the summer. I guess if we always had three-day weekends, we'd then get greedy and want four. Both Friday and Monday off. Then nothing would ever get done and the country would collapse. But I don't think people would really want four days. I think three is the perfect amount. Saturday you usually spend running errands and other things, so it's not like you're really relaxing. Sunday you relax, maybe stay up late, have a few drinks. Then Monday you rest up for the work week. This could definitely work. I say we give it a try. Maybe if everyone calls in sick every Friday, the higher-ups will just have to give us the day off anyway. Let's give it a try this week and see what happens!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

You Be the Judge

I will admit it now: when it comes to farting, I am a 12-year old.

It's true. I am about as immature as one can get on this subject. I can toot with the best of them. There, I said it. Everybody toots, you know. It's part of life. Why not have a little fun with it?

Don't get me wrong, there are times when it's pretty gross. I don't mean I'm gross, I'm referring to some male family members who shall remain nameless. You know who you are.

Anyway, I was reading The Washington Post and stumbled across this. If you have ever seen Tim Russert, you know he's a fine, upstanding news commentator, specifically in the political arena. Play this video and tell me if you think Tim let one fly on national television. Play close attention to what he says because right after the maybe-fart, he flubs what he was saying. Because he just farted! You know, if you were on live TV and let one slip out, you'd lose your train of thought too.

Live by the code

I am a closet Beverly Hills, 90210 fan. Actually, I'm not really in the closet because most of my friends and family know. It's my most guilty pleasure.

I don't know what it is about the show that I love so much. When it first came out, I watched religiously. I was the same age as they were on the show. Well, I was the same age as the characters, the actors were all old. I guess because it was about high school and hi jinks, it struck a chord. And then, as the years went on, the story lines got pretty bad. Don't get me wrong, I still watched. But it was more like to see how insane it could get. And once Brenda left, it just wasn't the same. I was one of the few that actually liked Brenda. And I hated Donna Martin. I certainly didn't want to see her graduate. When I was in college, we all got together in someones room to watch every Wednesday night. It was awesome. I still remember when we watched Dylan's wife of all of 2 days get shot by her own father's hit men! Oh, the irony. Those bullets were meant for Dylan.

That was pretty much when I stopped watching. Not because Dylan left the show, I was just over it. If you can believe it. I'd see it every now and then. I think it was on before Party of Five. Yes, I loved that show too. Poor Bailey. Anyway, fast forward 10 years, I discover that 90210 is on SoapNet. This is while I'm pregnant with Keller and on bedrest for 12 weeks. I rediscovered my love for 90210. It was on twice a day and it became the highlight of my day. Before you judge, imagine spending everyday of your life in bed hoping whatever movement you do make doesn't throw you into premature labor and jeopardize the health of you and your baby. You'd take what you could get too. Anyway, they started at the beginning and ran all the way through to the end. It was like being reunited with an old friend. When my parents visited, we'd all sit on the bed together and watch, because there was no way I was missing it (the TV in the bedroom doesn't have TiVo). And, as much as they deny it, they love 90210 too. How can you not?

So, now, three years later, I am happy to say that I'm still a faithful viewer. I can't watch everyday, unfortunately. Stupid life obligations! I TiVo it and watch it when I can. And I know I'm not the only one with the 90210 love because they're making a new one! Oh, it's going to stink, but I'm going to watch. Here's a preview. I think there will be a couple of old cast members popping in here and there, too. I can't wait!

You know you're humming the theme song now.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

You say you want a revolution...

The latest obsession: tea.

Yes, tea. When I went to the concert and dinner with Lynne last week, I learned that she is a tea aficionado. I knew she liked tea and all, but the like apparently runs a little deeper than I thought. She's crazy for it. I was intrigued.

She said she orders a lot of her tea online and has certain preferences, none of which I remember. But she mentioned one tea that is good that you can get in the store: Revolution Tea. So, I decided to look them up.

One thing you have to know about me: I'm an advertiser's dream come true. I am a true sucker for advertising, packaging, labeling, etc. Revolution Tea's website is so pretty and clean. Their packaging is so sleek and inviting. I was instantly sold.

For the past few days I've been looking at their website and figuring out what I want to try. But I was unsure of how it was sold. Is it tea bags? Is it loose tea? I broke my infuser, I'd have to buy a new one. I decided to call the company and ask. The very nice lady explained that the tea bags are themselves infusers. They are a tea bag that is made of some magical fiber that allows for the perfect flow of hot water through the whole-leaf tea inside. And! They're see-through so you can watch your yummy tea brew.

I had to have this tea. I ran out of my office (not screaming) and walked very quickly to the Safeway down the street. I called John and he reassured me that I'm not crazy and tea is good for me so it's all right that I'm obsessing. Good enough.

I got to Safeway. There it was! And it was on sale! It was fate. I bought all the flavors they had, which was 6 flavors: Tropical Green Tea, White Pear, Dragon Eye Oolong, English Breakfast, Earl Grey Lavender, and Sweet Ginger Peach. I had the White Pear when I got back to work. Yum-my! Now I'm drinking the Earl Grey Lavendar. I normally have to put milk in black tea because it's kind of bitter. Not this! It's wonderful.

I can't wait to try them all! There are something like 30 flavors and you can buy them all online. There are coupons in the boxes! Seriously, there are so many signs pointing to me drinking this tea, it's scary.
I'm sure by the time you've read this, I will have bought and tried all the flavors. I'll let you know which ones are my favorites!

Tuesday, May 20, 2008


Guilt is a strange thing.

I believe we as human beings have the ability to feel guilt to keep us in check. You know, so the vast majority of us don't run around doing terrible things to everything and everybody. Or, at least we'd feel badly about it if we did. But why is it that some of us take it to the extreme?

I have the tendency to feel guilty about just about everything I ever do. Some days my guilt is so overwhelming, I have to lay down. But then, I just lay in bed and think about all the things I could have or should have done differently in the course of my life. It doesn't matter that I can't change how things have turned out. I'll still sit there. I know I'm not the only one that does this, so don't judge me.

It is only Tuesday and I already feel guilty about a plethora of things. I feel guilty that I didn't run yesterday (I have a cold and feel like poo). I feel guilty that I left work early yesterday because of said sickness (I took sick time, it's not like I cut out early). I feel guilty that I drove into work both yesterday and today. And this guilt is twofold: I'm spending money needlessly on gas and parking and I'm killing our planet and contributing to global warming. I feel guilty that I had to go to work in the first place because when I left this morning, Keller didn't want me to leave. This is a rare thing, hence the guilt. I feel guilty because one of my oldest friend's birthday was Sunday and I didn't wish him a happy birthday until today. I could really be here all day.

Why do we do this to ourselves? Really, what is accomplished? Feeling guilty isn't going to change the fact that I didn't run, or left work early, or drove into work this morning. Ah! I hate this. But the real shame in all of this is: most of the things I feel guilty about don't really matter. Seriously, in the grand scheme of life, does it really matter that I didn't run yesterday? No, because I know I'll make up the miles. OK, so it does kind of matter that I drove into work because that does affect not only my finances but the planet. But I take the bus so regularly, doesn't it kind of even out? I think it's normal for most parents to feel guilty about working when they'd rather be home with their children, especially when they're super cute like Keller. That's just the way it is.

I could sit here and blame my parents for laying guilt trips on me, or my religion for instilling the guilt factor. But that doesn't accomplish anything either. The truth is that I do this to myself and no one is really responsible for how I feel other than me. But what do I do to stop this vicious cycle of guilt?

I guess the important thing to realize here is that most of the guilt I feel is unnecessary. I can recognize when I should feel guilty (I'm sorry, Bobby, I hope you had a great birthday) and when I shouldn't. I will make myself feel better by telling myself that I'm only human, born to make mistakes...wait, that's a song. But it does apply.

Anyway, that's the deal today. Maybe it's the weather that's contributing to these feelings. It's rainy and ugly outside. But I know I'm not responsible for that. Yay! No guilt there!

Sunday, May 18, 2008

They say it's your birthday...

Yesterday was John's birthday. I won't say how old he is because he'll get mad at me, but let's just say he's older than me. :)

Anyway, I think John had a good day. We were up fairly early, as usual. I had a run to get in, so I was up. But Keller was up at about 6:00, which is par for the course. We started the morning off with the Birthday dance (we play Birthday by The Beatles and dance for everyone's birthday every year. Even for Lola and Percy's birthdays). That is always fun.

John and Keller then ran the Germantown 5-miler kids run, which was 1K. Keller ran almost the entire thing! But he ultimately hit the wall and needed a ride from Papa. But they finished the race and Keller earned a nice medal.

After the race, they played in the moonbounce together and that was really fun. We then had breakfast (yum! Chick-fil-a breakfast rocks). We danced to the Birthday song again and John then went on a nice bike ride for some quality John-time.

Once John got home, we were going to go to the Strawberry Festival in Potomac, but Keller had different plans. He slept until 3:15, which was about a 3.5 hour nap. The festival ended at 4:00, so we figured by the time we got down there, we wouldn't get to do very much. Oh well, there's always next year.

We went out to dinner with Lynne, Randy and Elena. This past Thursday was Lynne's birthday, so it was nice to celebrate two of my favorite people together. We went up to Frederick and had dinner at Isabella's. It's a Spanish tapas place that Lynne, Randy and Elena had been to a bunch of times, but we had never been. We love Spanish food, so we were up for it. It was so good! We ate so much and everything was so good. Keller enjoyed the paella the most. He ate tons of that. I can't wait to go back there.

Then we walked around downtown Frederick for a little while. There are some really cute shops and restaurants along Market Street. John got some rather unique Nikes at one shop. They are interesting, to say the least. He likes them and that's all that matters.

We then came home and everyone went to sleep. Overall, it was a nice day and I hope John had a great birthday. He deserves it! He is such a wonderful person, I hope he knows how much we all love him. We are very lucky to have him!

Happy Birthday, John. Je t'aime, mon petit chou!

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Sleep is for the weak

I am flying high on caffeine right now, so if this doesn't make sense, I apologize.

Last night, I went to a concert with some friends I haven't seen in months. I got home pretty late and now I'm exhausted. I have some important meetings today, but I should be able to get through them.

I went to see Joan Osborne at the Ram's Head in Annapolis with Lynne and Betsy. I met Betsy in 2003 when I was training for my first marathon with the AIDS Marathon charity program. We were in the same pace group. We became pretty friendly. And every so often, her sister, Lynne, would join us. Well, Lynne and I both got injured and had to defer our registration for the race until the following year. But we decided we would train together for it. So, Lynne and I ran together the following summer.

Lynne and I were instant friends. We share much of the same interests and beliefs. I believe our first conversation was about how the present Commander in Chief is severely lacking in several key areas. Though we used much less tact and far more colorful language. Anyway, Lynne is so the person I want to be when I grow up. She's fun and smart and completely down to earth. You feel instantly comfortable in her presence and you want to be part of her circle. And Betsy is the exact same way. The two of them are the older sisters I never had but always wanted and I'm so grateful to have them in my life.

So, last night we went to see Joan Osborne. Lynne is a super music hound and goes to shows as much as she can. Since I don't get to see her and Betsy very often, I joined them and another friend, Kim, for the show. I don't know anything about Joan Osborne other than the "What if God Was One of Us" song. Plus, today is Lynne's birthday, so I wanted to see her anyway.

The show was pretty good. Joan Osborne is a great singer. Most of her current music is very blues-y. She did a lot of covers and some of her own songs from an upcoming album. She did sing the God song, though I figured she wouldn't since she seems so far removed from that. But I enjoyed the show. I really enjoyed the blues-y music. It's very sultry. It's like that Friends episode when Phoebe gets a cold and loves her voice so much, she starts singing the blues.

The show was at the Ram's Head in Annapolis, which I've never been to before. It's a restaurant in "downtown" Annapolis that also has a bar area for shows. It's small and low-key, which I like. It seems like they have a good variety of shows, even some for kids. So, I think we'll be going there more often.

The only bad part of the evening was getting home at 11 PM, a mere 6 hours before I had to get up for work. Well, that didn't happen, as expected. But I was still able to get to work on time, which is what matters! The fact that I'm in my pajamas is insignificant. (I'm really not in my pajamas) I have a pretty busy day, so hopefully I'll make it through. Bring on the coffee!

You know, when I was in elementary school, we sang this song about coffee. Why, I really don't know. It's kind of a strange song for little kids to be singing. But, I still remember the words to this day. So, imagine a little 8-year old me singing this:

Coffee is not for me.
It's a drink some people wake up with.
That it makes them nervous is no myth.
Slave to a coffee cup, they can't give coffee up!

How funny is that? Sing it proud!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Rico Suave

My child is a ladies' man.

There's a new little girl in Keller's class. Her name is Hailey and she's down-right adorable. She's so little and cute, with such a sweet little face. When I've picked Keller up from school, I've noticed the two of them playing together and having a grand old time. One time, they were chasing each other around outside and I had to literally drag Keller away from her. That should have tipped me off.

A couple of days ago, John picked Keller up from school. One of his teachers told him that Keller and Hailey are best friends. They play together all day and just have a good time together. They sit at the table together when they're having lunch and snacks. We thought it was pretty cute that Keller had a little love interest. We'd ask him about Hailey and if he loved her (yes), thought she was nice (yes), and liked to see her at school (yes). We were happy he was getting along well with his classmates.

Well, maybe he's getting along a little too well, if you know what I mean. Yesterday, when I arrived to pick Keller up from school, they were sitting at the table having their snacks. I usually just hang out and let him finish eating. While I'm sitting there, I talk with Keller's teachers to see how his day went. Here's the conversation:

Me: How was Keller's day today?
Teacher: Oh, it was good. Blah blah blah, I won't bore you with the details. (she didn't say that, I'm saying that to you, dear reader.)
Me: Oh, great.
Teacher: So, Keller and Hailey are best friends.
Me: I know, that's so cute.
Teacher: Yes, but when they play together, they kiss on the mouth.
Me: What?

Apparently, Keller and Hailey have started to kiss all day long. At first, they said it was cute how they kissed and they didn't really think anything of it. But then, each time they played together, they kissed! HA! I don't really think there's anything to it. But, what am I supposed to do? Do I laugh and make light of it because it's absolutely adorable? Or do I try and get him to stop? I don't want to make him not want to kiss girls! But at the same time, if he's kissing girls at 2, what is he going to do in high school?

I did have a "talk" with him. I asked him about kissing Hailey and he said he kissed her. I told him that her parents may not want her to kiss anyone at school. He didn't really pay attention. I'm interested to hear about his day today.

Keller and Hailey, sitting in a tree...

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Mother's Day

There are times in my life where everything feels so surreal, it just can't be me. I don't mean it in a negative way, like, "This can't be happening to me!" I mean it more like, "Wow, when did this all happen?" I feel like that a lot when it comes to being a mom. I still can't believe I have a child, even almost three years later. There are days when I wonder when I became an adult. I can't possibly be in my 30s with a child. That's just crazy. I still feel like I'm a kid.

So, when Mother's Day rolls around, I forget that I can get in on the action. I forget that I'm now one of the moms that get cards and little gifts and stuff. I like it!

Friday began the Mother's Day weekend. Keller's school had a breakfast for all the moms. We went to school a little early and had bagels and donuts. All the kids had made little gifts for the moms. My first Mother's Day craft! Keller brought over his little gift and he had this sweet look on his face. He was so excited and stood there all fidgety as I opened it. It's a little paper bear that he painted brown. It has a heart in the belly that says, "For a beary special mom." Yes, my heart melted. It has a magnet on the back, so it's now on the fridge.

Saturday morning we all went to Starbucks for breakfast. We went shopping of course afterwards. We were right there at Target, so we just had to go in.

Unfortunately, while this Mother's Day is special, it is also bittersweet. It is still so soon after my grandmother passed away. While we were in Target, I was buying the Mother's Day cards (yes, I know they're late. I couldn't bring myself to get them) and had a freak out. I picked up the Grandmother cards for John's grandmothers. I didn't even read them, I just picked up whatever said Grandmother. Then, as I was looking for the ones for our moms, all I could see were the Grandmother cards. This is the first time I'm not buying one for my grandmother. I had to run and get John. I was crying hysterically and he was so confused. He didn't know what was going on. Keller was a little confused as well. I could finally get it all out and tell him what was going on. He went over and finished getting the cards. But it was an unexpected freak-out. I miss her so much.

After Target, we just came home and hung out. John had a race this morning, so he had to go pick up his race packet yesterday. So Keller and I just hung out for a while. We then had a birthday party to go to. A friend of mine from graduate school, Chad, and his wife Tamyra have a little boy, Preston, who turned 2. They are also expecting their second baby in November. Anyway, we went to the party and had a good time.

After the party, we came home, made dinner and ate, then Keller went to bed. I watched Juno while John got ready for his race. He had a sprint triathlon in Centerville, VA this morning. He had to get up really early this morning because the race started at 6:30 and it's about 30-45 minutes just to get there. Anyway, Juno was an awesome movie. I loved it. Yesterday's blog is about my thoughts.

This morning, Keller and I enjoyed a nice, quiet morning of cuddling. We just hung out and cuddled, then played until John came home. We called Mee-ma (my mother) and talked for a long time. She's doing all right. It's bittersweet for her too. But Keller told her he loved her and wished her a happy day and that made her feel good. John came home and they gave me a beautiful necklace that says, "Maman, je t'aime" which is "Mom, I love you" in French. So sweet. After the heart melting, I went for a run and then we went over to The Silberman's house for brunch. It was so great to see them, I haven't seen Allison in a month, I think. Phil made a great breakfast of eggs and veggie bacon, plus a pizza and some lasagna. And he made some carrot juice. It was nice. Then we all hung out and Ava and Keller played. It was a nice morning/afternoon.

After brunch, we all took naps. Then John and Keller went to the store to buy the ingredients for dinner. And now John is furiously making dinner for us. We're having tilapia fillets. Yum!

Happy Mother's Day everyone!

Saturday, May 10, 2008


I just finished watching Juno.

I'm actually not really sure if I have all my thoughts together yet. This movie was so good. For those of you that haven't seen it, man, what are you waiting for?

First of all, runners are totally cool.

Second of all, Allison Janney is awesome.


I would think most people would think this movie is just about teenage pregnancy. Maybe on the surface, yes, it's about teenage pregnancy. But beneath the surface there is so much more. It's about love and life and finding out what makes you happy.

In my post the other day (The Bus), I wrote about how I finally realized that life isn't about trying to figure out how to get the things we want. It's about what is important to us. So, when you are alone and you're thinking about the things that make you happy, that's what life is about. When you find yourself actually with the things you have wanted all along, well, then, you're set. There's no more looking. Life isn't about the constant strive for whatever it is we think we're supposed to want.

Juno just brought all of what I've been thinking about full circle. Ever since I wrote that post the other day, I have felt kind of free. I have felt like this weight just sort of dissolved. We're allowed to be happy with what we have, we don't always have to be searching for something greater. Not if what we have already is what we truly want anyway.

In my hopelessly romantic world, I've always been a follow-your-heart kind of person. It's always nice to find that I'm not the only one. So, Juno, rock on.

Thursday, May 8, 2008


Oh my God! I have got serious problems.

Anyone that knows me, knows I tend to have a bit of an obsessive personality. All right, maybe it's more than "a bit." When I decide that I love something or am really into it, I have the tendency to go a little nuts. Let's go over some of my most recent obsessions: earrings, lip stick, hair bands, juicing, salad (yes, salad), getting a haircut and what that would entail, anything that has to do with my child, makeup (that was expensive), dresses, and so on. I have had little mini-obsessions recently. Nothing to really tell anyone about. I had a brief obsession with lip balm recently only because I developed an allergic reaction to my current one. But I think that's worked itself out. I was obsessed with podcasts for a little while because I listen to them on the bus. I LOVE Ricky Gervais' podcast. I love him. I was obsessed with these Nike running capris for about a week or so. I bought 1 pair when we were in San Diego in January. I loved them so much, I bought 3 more pairs back in April. Then we were at the outlets last weekend and I was about to buy some more and John looked at me like I was crazy. Like you can talk, buster.

But now I feel like I have these fleeting obsessions throughout the day. So, I'll be sitting at my desk at work and have this insane thought about how I absolutely HAVE to go find a shoe store and buy a new pair of shoes. I mean, right now. And then, strangely, it passes. And I feel a little tired after it. What the hell?

Isn't that what happens to drug addicts? Don't they have an intense urge to get high, then they get high, and then they crash and are tired? Does this mean I'm addicted to being obsessed? Seriously, I'm a little scared about this. I sound like a lunatic.

In case you haven't noticed, the latest obsession is this blog. When something happens to me or crosses my mind, I think about how it would be a great blog topic. I sit and think up blog post titles. I had a brief thought that every single blog post title would be the title of a Beatles' song. Like this one was going to be 'Helter Skelter.' But then I figured people would get sick of that.

That's really all I had to say on the topic. I'm hoping that I don't spiral out of control, running out of my office screaming that I absolutely HAVE to go to the store and buy their entire stock of some random item like paper plates. Hmmm....

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

The Bus

So, I live in Germantown and work in Bethesda. The commute truly sucks, so I take a bus to work just about everyday (Shout out Bus Route 70). I never thought of myself as a public transportation kind of person, and certainly not a bus. But I actually like it. I like it for several reasons:

  1. I don't have to drive and deal with traffic.
  2. I can close my eyes for an extended period of time, which is something you shouldn't do when you drive.
  3. I can read, which is also something you shouldn't do while driving.
  4. It's cheap cheap compared to driving. Driving: gas + parking = ~$13 a day. Bus: fare = $2.70 a day. Come on.
  5. Did I mention no traffic?

Now, don't get me wrong. I love my car (especially my NEW car!) and I love the freedom and all that. But I also love not spending a lot of money on getting to work everyday and the numerous other reasons.

Why am I talking about this? Well, for some reason I have all my revelations on the bus. The bus became the place where I would do all of my thinking and soul searching. It was 30 minutes of uninterrupted reflection, I guess. While it was welcomed reflection most of the time, in the month after my grandmother passed away, the bus ride after work was always terribly depressing. I'd find myself getting terribly upset, even crying, on the ride home. I don't know why, it was weird. The bus does weird things. But, thankfully, that has passed.

This morning's bus ride was no different than usual. I read my book for book club, which I happened to finish about half-way through the bus ride. Which left about 15 minutes of reflection. The book I read, Love Walked In, by Marisa de los Santos, was really good. I loved it. It was sweet and sappy and predictable. The story ended with everything tied up neatly with a shiny, red bow. Sometimes that's what you need, which is pretty much where I am right now. But, what I didn't expect was the thought-provoking-ness of it. There was a little paragraph towards the end of the book (Spoiler alert for those of you reading that are in my book club), where the main character, Cornelia, is discussing the meaning of life. Well, as you know from the title of my blog, the meaning of life is always on the forefront of my mind. Cornelia explains how she used to think the meaning of life, that "real life," was the process of achieving what your heart desired, whether it was love, career, money, etc. It wasn't necessarily the actual desires themselves, but rather the process of getting them. This hit home for me because I have always felt that life was supposed to be some quest for the always-elusive brass ring. You go through life striving for something better than what you have now. What that "something better" is, I don't know. I'd know it when I found it. Then I'd want something better than that. Cornelia goes on to explain how she realized that knowing what is important to you, or what your heart desires, is really what life is about. Not the pursuit of the desire, but the desire itself. That's it! That's the meaning of life right there.

What is my heart's desire? A great husband (check); a beautiful, healthy child (check); a wonderful, loving family (check); kick-ass friends that care about me and I care about (check); a home that I love coming home to (check); and so forth. I'm not trying to say, "Hey, look at me. I'm GREAT!" Far from it. I just think it's time to actually appreciate what I have in life instead of always striving for something more. There are lots of things I wish were better, such as not having to worry about paying bills and increasing gas prices and global warming and bathing suit season (all of which scare the crap out of me). But I will try not to think about those things all the time and focus on the things I do love and don't have to worry about all the time.

So, for today anyway, I will love everything and everyone. I will try to appreciate things because I have the ability to. I will appreciate the fact that I have a job, instead of grumbling about my boss not even waiting for me to sit down at my desk when I arrive before telling me all the things I need to get done. I will appreciate the fact that I can run instead of being upset that my race went badly this past weekend. And so forth.

Wow, all of this in just a 30 minute bus ride!

I hope everyone has a great day!

Monday, May 5, 2008

A Day at the Zoo

This past Saturday, we took a class at the zoo. The class was called "Dancing with the Animals" and was a lot of fun.

We have been taking Keller to the zoo since he was just an infant because John and I love the zoo. And since the pandas have had their baby panda, I can't get enough of him! Their baby panda was born 2 months before our baby, so it's like they're growing up together! The baby panda just happens to be much larger and furrier than our baby.

We took our first zoo class back in February. It was "Rocking Rain Forest" and the kids made drums, heard a story about the rain forests and their animals, and took a walk through the zoo. We saw the elephants get weighed and get examined by their handlers. That was basically the handler asking the elephant to lift its foot and roll over. It was funny seeing the elephants act like puppies.

Keller really enjoyed the zoo that day. He talked about all the animals for weeks afterward. He told everyone about the animals he saw and what they were doing.

We had such a good time, I convinced Mary to join FONZ so we could take both Keller and Noah to classes together. So, she signed up and the Gill and the Gies families went to a class this past Saturday.

This was Mary and Noah's first time at the zoo and I think they had a great time. In the class, the kids (and parents) made animal sounds and sang songs about dancing animals and they made a tambourine!

We then went on a long walk through the zoo. We saw the cheetahs, zebra, emu, sloth bears, otters, pandas, elephants and hippo. It was awesome. Keller had a great time and Noah did as well. We'll definitely take more classes this summer.

Sunday, May 4, 2008

The Frederick Marathon

Well, I can cross off Marathon #6.

Today was the Frederick Marathon. I'll try to give a good recap.

This was the goal race for the running group I've been coaching since January. There were about 35 people in the group, a nice mix of men and women. About half the group was training for the full marathon and the other half was training for the half marathon. It was a good group and we all had a lot of fun training together.

Friday night, we had about 25 people from the group over for a pre-race potluck. It was a great evening of getting out some of the anxiety before the race and hanging out in regular clothes instead of sweaty running clothes.

Saturday, we went to the zoo with the Gies family for a Dancing with the Animals class and a walk through the zoo. It was a lot of fun. Keller and Noah made a tambourine, they learned about the animals in the zoo, and sang some songs. Then we walked through the zoo and saw the cheetahs, zebra, emu, pandas, sloth bears, orangutan, elephants, and the hippo! Keller absolutely loves the zoo, so it was a lot of fun seeing him get excited over the animals.

After we got back from the zoo, I went up to get my packet. The expo was kind of lame. But it's a small race, so there really isn't much you can do about that. After I got back, we hung out and rested. Then we went over to the Gies' house for dinner. That was nice.

When we got home, our neighbors were having a party. The music was insane. I swear, if they don't stop with the music rattling the walls, I think I'm going to lose my mind. Anyway, I was able to get to sleep relatively early. I woke up at 1:00 AM to the sound of 800 kids outside. Thankfully I was able to fall back to sleep.

I got up at 4:00 so I'd have time to get things together so we can leave at 5:00. Kanayo, my assistant coach, came over at 5:00 and we were off. We got to the race at 5:30 and then just got ready for the race. We found most of our runners and were able to wish everyone luck.

Then the race started. I felt good from the start, though I was running a little faster than I wanted. I think I was averaging about 9 min/miles. And stomach went berserk. I don't know what happened, really. I just started having cramps and needed to make a couple of stops. I think it all started around mile 6 or 7. I don't remember. I saw John and Keller at mile 14 and I seriously wanted to get into the car and go home. But John encouraged me to keep going (Keller just wanted my Gatorade) and I was running again. But by 16, I accepted the fact that I wasn't having the race I had originally hoped. So, I stopped at 16 and waited to see my runners. I was there a while before one of my runners came by, Karolina. She was also having a hard time. So we ran together for the rest of the race. I felt better after a little while, but I didn't want to leave Karolina. I know all too well how hard it is to get through a race when you're sick.

The second half of the course sucked. Really, it was so hilly. I couldn't believe someone thought this was a good idea. I think it was much hillier than other courses I've run. But, the other factors, such as the weather, were better than originally expected. Thunderstorms were in the forecast but it never rained. It was humid and windy (though not as windy as last year). But it could have been a lot worse.

I was really happy with how my group did. As far as I know, everyone but Karolina had a good race. And Karolina did great for not feeling well. I'm so proud of all of them!

And now it's some time off, then training for Chicago. I have to say I'm a little discouraged about my whole stomach issue as I try to qualify for Boston. I'm making an appointment with the doctor this week to see if we can get this figured out before Chicago.