Monday, November 25, 2019

10 years

Mary over at The Mountains Are Calling talked about the 10 year "challenge" that has been circulating around on social media the last week or so where you post a picture of yourself from 10 years ago and one of yourself from now.  She mentioned that she really feels that it is a ageist thing, or something to make you feel bad about yourself if you look older (you're going to!) or bigger (again, a very real possibility).  So she decided to "flip" it, where she listed things that she has done in those 10 years rather than how she looked. 

I actually have enjoyed seeing the old photos of my friends compared to now.  I think many of my friends and family look the same, of course they look younger, but then we were all younger 10 years ago. 

This was Thanksgiving 10 years ago.

This was from a month ago.
Honestly, I think I look better.

But I do like Mary's idea of talking about the accomplishments that I've done in 10 years.  I mean I didn't hike the Pacific Crest Trail like she did, but I still feel mine are worth mentioning.  😉

I worked my first harvest (2009)*
I had a baby (2011)
I started running (2012)
Went to Disneyland (2013)
I got my finances under control (2014)
I ran 2 marathons (2015 & 2017)
I finished the Washington Half & Full Marathon series (2017) with 3 half and 1 full (I actually ran 4     halves that year, but only 3 counted)
My son graduated high school (2017) (which is his accomplishment, but I was there)
I lost my Mom (2018) (not an accomplishment, but still huge in my life)
I bought my own car (2018)
I started graduate school (2018)
Went to Hawaii and Alaska (2019)
Ran Ragnar (2019)
I became a Mamaw (2019)

*I grew up on a farm, but could never work harvest because I am so allergic to wheat dust.  In 2009, for whatever reason, I was able to work it (as long as I stayed out of the fields as much as possible and kept the windows rolled up all the time . . . and took a lot of allergy meds).

Wednesday, November 20, 2019

Life happens

I haven't been running a lot.  Oh, I'm running every day, just not far.  And actually, I'm doing more than one mile 5 days a week, but those miles are usually only 3 miles.  So my average weekly mileage has dropped quite a bit.  I also have started running hill repeats again.  I missed one week of hills when I was in Idaho, but I have done this last weekend and the weekend before I went to Idaho.  Those runs are also only 3 miles, and are a little different than the typical hill repeats. 

Typically you run as fast as you can up a hill and then jog or walk back down the hill and repeat. I have done those a couple times in the past, but it doesn't sound fun to me right now, so I changed it up a little. . . .plus, I'm not in the shape I was when I did it before, so I am making it easier until I build up a little hill endurance first. 

Close to my house is a hill, I run up this hill on almost every run I do, but then I'm mostly flat or gradual incline the rest of my run.  Well, the hill I run up is on a busy road, but there is a neighborhood that goes up and down that hill.  In fact, when I was training for the San Juan half a few years ago I ran this neighborhood a lot, up and down the hill.  So that is what I am doing now, up and down the hill through the neighborhood streets.
I'm not sprinting up the hills, just running, but I'm trying not to walk very far down, so I'm mostly running the entire time.  I do walk several yards after I get to the top, but then I run the rest of the way down the hill.  I did this a lot the year I ran the San Juan half, with a long run up a very, very long hill every week.  That was the year I started having problems with my hip and didn't know what it was, so I stopped running for 3 weeks in August of that year (the San Juan half was in June) and ran my second marathon in October.  I often wonder how fast I would have been if I hadn't stopped.  If I would have run under a 4 hour marathon.  Oh well.  Arthritis sucks, but now I take some Aleve and run anyway.  There's nothing I can do about it and I refuse to quit.  At least not yet.

I'm not itching to run a lot at the moment.  I'm kinda ready for my runstreak to be over, but I'm committed to go through 2019, so we'll see what happens in January.  I'm also not itching to run any races.  In 2019 the only one I did was Ragnar, and that's okay with me.  I don't know if I'll do races again.  I don't even know if I'll do a full marathon again.  That goal may be done, not completed, just not important. 

Things change after losing someone close to you.  My focus is different now.
I just found this on an old blog post.  I miss her.  I miss her everyday.

Thursday, November 14, 2019

I was recognized!

This last weekend I went to Nampa, Idaho for my 20 year college reunion.  Honestly, I didn't know these things existed, apparently they do them every 5 years. .  .  Anyway, I heard that bigger colleges don't, but I went to a smaller school so I guess it's a thing.  This was the first reunion of any kind that I have been to (well, family reunions don't count here).

I actually wasn't extremely nervous.  I usually am much more nervous about new things, but this time I was not.  I expected to hang out with my friend, who I've only seen once since graduating college (at my Mom's funeral), and have lunch with a bunch of people that don't remember me.  Which is exactly what I did.

My friend, Tara (pronounced with Tar that rhymes with car), took me to our school on Friday after I got to town.  It was completely different.  I couldn't recognize anything.  They took out all roads that went through the school, put a fence up, built at least 4 new (giant) buildings, added some statues, built a track. . .   It was crazy.  I kept asking Tara where we were and what building this was.  Even the old ones were strange because I couldn't place where they were because the new ones were everywhere.  The dorm for freshman girls was torn down after I left (the boys freshman dorm was torn down my Jr. year there), and the road in front of where it should have been was gone, so I couldn't get my bearings.

We are standing in front of where our freshman dorm once stood.
 This is the new library.  It stands where the old one was, but is probably 3 times bigger.

 A couple of the new fancy features of the school.  I was turned off by the Jesus statue, and even more turned off by the "price tags" on all the new stuff.  I felt it was in poor taste.  The "price tags" were meant to show the alumni where their donations are going, but I just felt disgusted by it and that I would never, ever donate to the school. 

While we were in the library we found our old year books and I took pictures.  I felt that my pictures of my freshman year and my sophomore year were especially telling about the changes I made after I became friends with Tara.
 My freshman year, looking all innocent and straight off the farm.
 My sophomore year after Tara introduced me to hair product.
 And my senior year after having Damian and coming back after leaving for a year and a half. 

On Saturday I woke up early to go for a run and then Tara took me to her dance class at her gym.  Then we went to our reunion lunch, which is the only reunion activity we did.  When I walked into the room where we ate, it was pretty obvious no one recognized me, most eyes just slid over me as if I was not someone they had ever met in their life.  Which is exactly what I expected.  I didn't recognize everyone, but I did recognize about half, and even remembered some names.   I did have one person remember me.  He even sounded excited to see that I was there. 

After the completely uneventful luncheon, where no one sat with us at our table (this is literally the story of my life) we toured some of the buildings we had missed the day before, including the brand-spanking new Student Union Building, and went into the old one (that I totally remembered). 

After we finished touring the school we went to a tequila bar and had some drinks and tacos.  Some of the people at the luncheon also came, most of them were people I recognized but was not friends with.  The guy that recognized me was one of the people that came.  So we chatted and drank tequila. . .  While we were finishing up the other group was talking about a house they were going to afterwards, and I invited myself to come along.  Tara had to run home to give her husband some Boise State tickets for a game that she forgot to take out of her purse, so she wasn't going to go with me.  I am not good with people I don't know, I don't talk and feel uncomfortable and weird, and this was a house of people I didn't know.  Tara knows this about me and asked me a couple times if I was sure.  The tequila answered, "of course!  I'll be fine!" 

Anyway, she left me with plans to come to the house after running home and off I went with people I haven't seen for 20 years and barely knew then.  When we got to the house I realized what I had done, and started saying (repeatedly) "this is a bad idea"  "This is a very bad idea."  I stopped at the door and looked at the driver (the guy who recognized me) and said "I'll go wait in your car."  He said "We'll be fine!" put his hand on my back and ushered me into the house.  😲

Thankfully one of the people that was at the tequila bar with us was already there and saw me come in.  She waved at me and yelled across the room "Cathy!" so I beelined for her and hung out with her and a few other people until Tara got there.  I ended up having a great time, but I definitely wouldn't have done it if I hadn't had tequila beforehand. 

I did talk to a couple people who said they remembered me, they just didn't recognize me at first.  As soon as I said my name, they knew who I was.  So that was a surprise. 

Overall, I had a good weekend, and it definitely made me realize I need to go to Idaho more often to see my friend.  We had a good time.  😊

Wednesday, November 6, 2019

College reunion

We had a good Halloween.  Maddox went as a firefighter. 
We were still trick or treating and he looked at me and said that he couldn't wait for next year.  He's so  funny.  😊

Also . . . October 31 was my one year running at least a mile a day.  I have officially been running 370 days in a row as of today.  So I had a run planned out specifically for my 365th day . . .

However, apparently I am dyslexic (not that funny, because Damian actually is, but still . . .), and I didn't spell out "365" but actually "E65."  And then I posted on instagram and facebook . . . and didn't realize that I had done that until we were almost done with trick or treating.  *facepalm*

Earlier in October Fare Thee Mel wrote about going to her 40 year high school reunion.  And it has me thinking about my own reunions.  10+ years ago I remember my Dad asking me if I was going to go to my 10 year high school reunion.  My Dad, my grandparents (my Dad's parents), and my siblings and I all graduated from the same very, very small school in eastern Washington.  When I graduated high school my Dad celebrated his 30th class reunion and my Grandma had her 50th class reunion, so on my 10 year, my Dad was celebrating 40 years (obviously).  (My Grandma had died by then, so she wasn't going.)

Anyway, I decided I was going to go, I had moved to western WA by then and was on my way over the mountains when I decided to try to figure out if anyone else in my class was going to go.  I graduated with only 13 other people, and I was only friends with 2 or 3 of them, the rest I couldn't stand.  So when I found out that one person that I really didn't like, and possibly another were the only people planning on attending, and the 2 or 3 people I did like weren't going, I turned around and went home.  I didn't even attempt to go to my 20 year reunion.

A few weeks ago my college roommate, who was my maid of honor when I got married, and continues to be a friend of mine (she even drove over 5 hours with her two kids and her husband to go to my Mom's funeral last year) called me to ask if I was planning on going to our 20 year college reunion.  I didn't even realize it had been 20 years, or that the reunion was coming up.  I haven't been back to Nampa, ID (where I went to college) for 18 years.  I was there 18 years ago to be a bridesmaid in a friend's wedding (that's a whole other long story), who I am not friends with now, and haven't seen since her wedding.

My college roommate, my friend, still lives in the area, in fact this year she started teaching part-time at NNU (Northwest Nazarene University) where we went to college.  If you knew my friend in college you would fall over hearing that.  She was not the teaching type.  In fact, my first memory of her she was dressed exactly like this:
Although her outfit was black and white . . . but seriously she dressed like she walked off the set of Clueless.  I didn't like her.  She didn't like me.  We became inseparable.

I am not the same person I was 20 years ago.  I don't even look like the same person.  Back then I was super shy, never talked and I was known as "Cathy, you know Tara's friend, with the hair?" (I had big curly hair).  My friend was outgoing, liberal *gasp!!* and a perfectionist.  I was introverted (already said that), conservative (not anymore), and messy (still am).  I suppose we will see how the weekend goes.

I do want to talk to her about her Master's program that she finished 3 or 4 years ago.  She did Social Work, which is really where my heart is, and she was the one that talked me into going back to school at my Mom's funeral.  I just couldn't find a social work program that I could get into immediately, and I knew if I didn't go now, I wouldn't go, so I entered a professional counseling program.  I regret it a lot, not the going back to school part, but the program part.

Oh, did I forget to mention my reunion is this coming weekend?  Yeah, I leave on Friday.  I'm nervous.

Monday, October 28, 2019


It's already the end of October and I have not posted anything at all this month.  I have no excuses except I haven't felt like writing anything.  I really do think this is because I am writing a paper once a week for school and I'm focusing all my brain power into that instead of "fun" writing.  I have not been idle over the last month, so I will try to sum it up without making this a long, boring post.

I have the cutest kid and grandson ever!

Chris was asked to go out of town for 2 weeks for work at the beginning of the month (well, September 29) for 2 weeks, which happened to be over my birthday weekend (Oct. 6).  He went to Spokane which is on the other side of the state but honestly, I didn't actually feel any hardship.  I enjoyed the time with Maddox, just us, and really enjoyed eating whatever we wanted without worrying about Chris's tastes.  (We have really different taste buds, so he gets annoyed with what I cook and I get tired of what he cooks.)

I went on many short runs, or runs with Maddox (and usually neighbor friend) in tow.
 I babysat one night, and loved every minute of it.
 Ha! no, I didn't babysit Damian . . .

Asher in the cradle my Dad made for Damian.
I really enjoyed hot tub time . . . both in the morning and in the evening.

 I have a very funny story to tell about my hot tub time.  One weekend evening I decided I wanted to read a real book, not a text book, and a good friend of mine gave me a trio of books by the same author.  The one I really wanted to read was Ella Enchanted, which I didn't know was a book before it was a movie.  (I have a thing for Cinderella stories.) So I was reading on the couch after Maddox went to bed.  I decided I should get in the hot tub.  Well, I got (my first) glass of wine, and my book and went out to the hot tub.  I was holding my book in one hand and my wine in another and put my phone in the handy cup holder.  I stepped in and immediately my foot flew out from under me because it was sooooo slippery.  As I was going down, I thought "Well, my new book is getting wet."  Yep, as I came up with the wet book I noticed I had only splashed a little wine so I looked at my book and thought it was still readable.  I sit back and then look over for my phone . . . it was in the hot tub.  Thankfully Samsung makes waterproof phones, so it's fine, and my book was readable.  I really wish someone had been there because I'm sure it was the funniest thing to see.
I was looking for a picture of someone falling while holding up their drink, but this is as good as I could find.

Maddox and I decorated for Halloween . . .  that big spider? yeah, I put that up.  I HATE spiders.

Chris came home and gave me my birthday gifts.  He gave me an Ember coffee cup
Two weekends ago my sister and I got tattoos.  This tattoo has been planned (for me) for about 1 years, I just never did it.  Then after my Mom died it became more important for me to do it.  I told my sisters that they could "steal" my idea, and 2 of them already got it (which annoyed me even though it was my idea that they go first).  My other sister (the one I'm closest to) is pretty picky and had a very specific spot (her wrist) and wanted it very fine, so we had to look awhile to find somewhere to do it the way she wanted.  (And ended up going to the same place I always go.)  Anyway, I love it.
Last weekend we went to the very muddy pumpkin patch.

And I babysat again.

This last weekend was pretty chill.  We didn't do anything.

And that is my October.  I hope you all had a great month and Happy Halloween!

Monday, September 30, 2019

How do you know if someone runs?

Don't worry, they'll tell you.

(Someone recently wrote an excellent article or blog post about this, how running, or track, is not well attended in high school because many schools don't offer it until high school, and most sports use running as a punishment, so kids associate running with negative thoughts.  I think it was a Runner's World article, but I can't find it now.)

Anyway, runners are a breed of their own.  Runners are always thinking about running, where, when, how, how far . . . these are all thoughts that a runner has during the day and sometimes even while they are running.  And honestly, it's worse when you start run streak.  I do not fit the mold of all runners, but I do have my own quirks that probably resonate with other runners.

I have become good (not great) at blowing snot rockets while I run.  Before I started running, I would never have done that, I didn't even spit well back then.

I hate running sometimes.

I run the same route almost on a daily basis.  Even different mileage has the same starting route usually.

If I run past a store window I always check myself out, especially my butt.

When I travel I bring more running clothes than regular clothes.

Again, when I travel, I'm always looking for a good spot to run.

Also, when I travel, I stress out how I'm going to get my run in.

I'm over race bling, I don't need another medal, unless it's for a distance I've never done before or I PR'd (which I haven't done in years).

I secretly love my race tshirts and can't bear to part with any of them.

I don't understand how someone with long hair can run without putting it up.

I always speed up when I'm passing another running.

I never warm up and rarely cool down, or stretch.

I actually dread when my son wants to run with me more than a mile.
I have never peed (or otherwise) outside while running.  Other runners talk about it, but I've never had to.

I'm sure there are many more, but that is all I can think of for now.  Do you have any quirks related to your exercise that are cliche (or not)?

Friday, September 20, 2019


Running is interesting.  It is the only exercise that I will consistently do.  For many, many years I've wanted to do yoga consistently, but I forget, or get lazy, and just don't do it.  I enjoy spin class, but don't do it.  I did weights for awhile but got bored (after close to 2 years).  Running seems to be the only thing that I will do regularly and always go back to.  (Actually, since starting 8 years ago, I've never stopped unless injured). 

But there are also times when I feel like running a lot and times when I don't feel like running at all.  When I went to Hawaii I wanted to run all the time, even after I got home.  I loved it.  It kinda felt like Hawaii gave me a little boost.  However, my Alaska cruise had the opposite affect.  I didn't want to run on the boat, and since I've been home, I haven't wanted to run hardly at all.  I am keeping my run streak, but barely.  

In Hawaii I ran 1 mile only a couple times in 10 days and when I came home I wanted to keep that up.  Since March I have run more than 1 mile 5 days a week, which I haven't done for several years (usually 3+ miles 3 or 4 times a week).  I even hit 100 miles in a month for 4 months, only one month in 5 was under 100 miles and it was 95 miles.  Then we went on a cruise in August and the treadmills were awful, and I quit running so much.  In August I only made it to 81 miles, and since getting off the boat, I've only run 4 times a week (more than a mile) and my longest run has been 5 miles (one time).  I will say, that for 3 of those 4 weeks I've been sick, but I really haven't felt like running. 

Anyway, I am still running, a lot of 1 miles and 3 miles, but it is still a streak.  I know I was going to go for a year, and my year is up on November 1, but I've been thinking about extending it to at least the end of this year.  Then I can say I ran every single day in 2019, which I think is kinda cool. 

And I think I'll end with a couple cute baby photos.  =)