Wednesday, January 28, 2009

Snow, Ice and Rain Day

We finally got it...A SNOW DAY!
Our first snow of the year!!
We pulled out hats, gloves, snow pants, boots...
Searched for sleds and snowboards...

The kids immediately headed for inclines located in various neighbors yards.
Sledding began!
Snow forts began to form in strategic areas.

Every available flake was needed (we only got a few inches).

Joey got in on the action.
And was one happy pooch.

And then the snow stopped and it began to sleet.

Ice began to form on everything.

The following morning, school was cancelled.

A glaze of ice shimmered from every surface.


I had to run 8 miles. There was no way I was going to do that on a treadmill.

It was time to pull out my YAKTRAX!

I ran the icy slipping, no sliding!

I felt like an Alaskan again! Many times, I had run on ice and snow.

No excuses.

Such a simple device...solving big problems!

Calvin took full advantage of the icy driveways.




his way to some cold hard cash!

...he is extremely sore...

and happy.

Later that day, the rains came down.

Ice gave way to dripping...

Everything is melting.

and Wet (how many times have I thrown wet snow clothes in the dryer??).

Bet you ten bucks school will be cancelled again tomorrow (or at least delayed)

Only in Washington DC!

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Birthday Boys

Ethan and Calvin had birthdays last week!
Since this is our "off" year for friend parties, Garth and I had the opportunity to take them out on a special date.
We had a super time at a Mongolian BBQ in Bethesda, MD.
Did you know that both boys had the same due date...the 19th?

Although Calvin is 2 years older, Ethan started off the birthday week on Jan. 16th.

He loved:

Ripley's Believe It or Not book
Newest Diary of a Whimpy Kid book
Blanket from Grandparents G. (and a shopping trip)
Cash from Grandparents N.
Cash from Aunt Lisa
Drums (our second set but this time we went digital)

We love him because:

He is sensitive
A Friend to all
Always includes others
Gives the best hugs ever
Is Happy with simplicity

Happy 9th Birthday Ethan.

Calvin celebrated his big day on January 21st. He doesn't like cake so we went with a half gallon of ice-cream. Gotta love that!
He loved:
Paintball jersey
Paintball pants (didn't know there was such a thing)
A bow for his bass from Grandparents G. (and a shopping trip)
Cash from Grandparents N.
Cash from Aunt Lisa
We love Calvin because:
He is independant
He makes things happen
He is a leader
He is capable
He is smart
He is helpful
Happy 11th Birthday Calvin!

Friday, January 23, 2009

Hole in the Pocket

Today my friend Jamie and I went for a 16 mile run on the WO&D trail that runs from Vienna, VA to Percyville. Not sure how many miles the trail is, but it is long and a great place to run/bike.
We were thrilled because the weather was in the 60's and we wore shorts.
Yesterday I ran and was bundled and wearing the opposite of shorts...
Typical Virginia weather (tomorrow will be cold again).

This was our longest run this training cycle so we were definitely feeling aches and pains as the miles whittled down.
When we had 1 to go, we were thrilled.
It happened to be up hill.
But when you can see the end...
it thrills.

We did our usual food talk at this point...planning our pig outs for later in the day (come on...that is why I run people).

We approached our cars and Jamie reached into his pocket to retrieve his key (by the way, I always throw my key into my running partner's car).

No key.


His key had fallen out of his pocket somewhere on our 16 mile run.

My key is in his car. Our phones are in our cars.

I have been here many times and know a fire station is a few yards away.

I decide I need to give it a try and see if they will help.

I look like a sweaty sight.

Almost emergency level.

I hobble over.

A fireman comes out.

We wonders if I need medical attention.

I tell him our plight.

He tells me to stay put and gets his co-worker.

Blessed day...his wife is a runner...he is a kayacker (he has lost his keys in the water before).

He tells me they aren't allowed to do this unless a child is in the car.

But he understands...

He gets to work, knowing this is sort of an emergency (just look at us).

He has amazing skill and great tools (did that sound bad...fireman are sexy though).

Door is open within alarm bonus bursting our eardrums.

We thank them over and over again and tell them their secret is safe with us.

They pray the alarm will stop so they don't have to hear it all day.

It does.

I drive Jamie home...he has to get his key and will eventually go back to retrieve his car...

After he finds his spare.

Or he brings his bike out to search the trail.


A small hole.

A huge thanks to Leesburg's Fire Station.

A Great Run.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

So Fun!

I had the best time this past weekend when my great friend Michelle came for a visit.
We hit all of our hot spots:
Cheesecake Factory
Mall Shopping
Thai Taste
Outlet Shopping
Have you noticed a pattern yet?!
Michelle moved away from us to NC almost 3 years ago.
It was time for everyone to see her again.
I planned a surprise dinner for her so we could all catch up!
We had so much fun together chatting that we had to move our group to Starbucks (this was mostly needed due to the frigid temperature at the Thai restaurant)!
It was there we sipped cocoa, treated ourselves to dessert
...we were eventually kicked out after closing the place down.
We took the opportunity and started planning for our 5th annual Girl's Only
(let me know if you want to join in this year)!
Snuggles on the couch!

Cheers and delights!

Michelle, thanks for coming to visit us!


Wednesday, January 14, 2009

I ramble...

Not anywhere near as cold as Alaska (Anchorage hitting 15 below) but man is it cold!
It hasn't snowed yet.
But I am prepared...I bought all of the kids boots at Target (just in case). You know what will happen if it does snow...all boots will vanish (not to mention gloves, hats and snow pants)
I have to run 12 miles tomorrow morning and the temperature will be a smokin' 20 degrees.
At least I have someone to talk to and he too will suffer.
This is by choice...what's up with that?!
Have you seen me limping?
I participated in a simple toning class at my neighborhood clubhouse on Monday.
No kidding, my quads haven't been this sore since I ran my last marathon. I actually have to go down the stairs backwards (try totally works when your quads kill).
I guess doing 3 million reps of anything will take its toll.
Am I toned now?!
Have you seen my spiffy new rental car?
A minivan...can't quite say it's me.
I miss Suburban.
I hope to see him soon...shiny, dent free, and totally filled with trash I didn't get around to clean out before the accident.
I have been watching WAY too much TV lately.
I love American Idol
I love 24
I love "the City"
I love Top Chef
I love Biggest Loser
I love the Office
I love 30 Rock
And with that...I must painfully limp up the stairs, lay out my running gear, get warmed up in my four layers of comforters, and settle in for another night of TV.

Saturday, January 10, 2009

Running and Happy

Garth will agree that I am happier now that I running again. It is amazing how much better I can handle stress when I am out there pounding the pavement. I am 90% sure I going to sign up for Boston in April. I was taking the past couple of months to see how my heel would hold up. I am back to being sore in my usual spots: hamstring, poplitius muscle (behind knee), and plantar fascia muscle (my heel area)...But all that means is that I am putting in the mileage (probably shouldn't)...what can I say...I am a running addict.

I got up at 6 am this morning and couldn't wait to meet up with a bunch of my running buddies from Lifetime Fitness. I ran 15 miles and it actually was fun (minus the above stated pains I have now).

I will let you in on a little secret. Many of you know I talk a lot. The great thing about running for long periods of time is the fact you have plenty of time to talk and talk and talk. When someone has some long drawn out story, you have all of the time in the world to listen. We set goals, we push one another, and the most about food. And when are you aren't feeling that great, a long story really helps you pass the time. You aren't thinking about where you need to be or what else you should be can really listen. And I have found in listening, the ease of building amazing relationships with my running friends.
Now go and Run...

Wednesday, January 7, 2009

Could Have Been Worse...

Counting my many blessings
for things could have been a lot worse.
Take tonight for example.
I am on my way to take Sommer to her church activity and Calvin to Scouts.
It was dark.
It was pouring rain.
I quickly yield before turning onto the interstate and see an oncoming car. It appears like they are veering off for the interstate as well.
I go ahead and continue my left turn.
It quickly appears that the car was not veering off but going straight.
I hit the car..driver's side.
Loud CRASH...metal scraping.
The other car spins and spins.
My head spins and spins realizing what I have just done.
Realize Sommer and Calvin are totally fine. I am totally fine. Car still working. Pull over to a safe position. Call Garth.
See other car. Driver's side, totally smashed in. Passenger side, totally smashed in. Wonder if there are kids in this minivan. Wonder if other driver is okay.
Get out of my car in pouring rain and walk over to other car. She is okay but understandably shaken up.
Realize it is one of Sommer's friends in the car I hit. Sommer is upset I hit her friend with my car.
Another car stops to see if we are okay...AFTER 10 minutes. Gentleman waits until police come.
Moments later two other cars are in an identical crash behind me.
Where were the police?
They show up along with firetrucks, ambulance...after 15 minutes!
Grateful I wasn't bleeding to death or it would have been too late.
Grateful everyone was okay.
Grateful I had been driving my huge Suburban...her minivan didn't fare as well.
Grateful I could drive my car home...shattered front headlight and all.
Grateful that although I got a ticket, ruined not only my car but someone else's (this was my first crash ever!), will be paying a deductible, will see insurance go up, will be crossing my fingers the other driver isn't in a mysterious neck brace and with slimy attorney at her side(unlike the non-slimy type...i.e., Garth, Donna and Bruce), will be on the phone multiple times, will wonder if my aching back is just psychological, and will be appearing in court on March 5th...
It Could Have BEEN Worse
And it wasn't.

Monday, January 5, 2009

Washer Woes

When Garth and I moved into our house almost 6 years ago we purchased "the best"washer money could buy.
The Calypso by GE was the one to have...
Lucky for you they don't make it anymore.
Lucky for us we bought a 5 year service plan.
I have made dear friends with the Sears Service People. When they come I ask how their kids are and what is new in their lives. I know which washers (besides mine) break down the most. I know, because I have asked so often, which washer I should purchase when my service agreement ends.
In 5 years it has broken down 12 times.
12 times.
They do have a lemon law with washers. They need to be serviced four times in one year. I have hit three every time.
But I am feeling lucky this year. Since November 7th 2008 they have come three times already.
...and after seeing what simple things will break down my washer motor...
I might just start washing the following a bit more often:
And then we can take our washer and push it over the highest cliff we can find.
But then I will miss the most incredible willing Grandma Gair that offers to wash AND fold our laundry when our washer doesn't work...(I might just have to have the new one "break down" every so often).
So I am crossing my fingers that in the next 11 months this blasted washer will break...again!