Wednesday, June 30, 2010

Girls weekend

I've got "Girls' Weekend" coming up this weekend. And I can't wait. It's a chance for me to meet up with 4 of my best friends for fun, relaxation, bonding, and support. Girls Weekend started a few years ago, with us planning to get together a couple of times a year. At the time, I don't think any of us had any clue about how important these weekends and the time together would become for us.

We met at college. It's been 12 years since the last of us graduated. In that time, we drifted apart; only natural when we all 5 live in 5 different cities in 3 different states. But there came a time when we realized that we missed each other. We missed the camaraderie and closeness of our college days. Of course, by this time, 4 of us were married and 3 had kids and life had changed dramatically for all of us. As one of us recently said, we grew apart over the years but were brought back together so we could support each other through some very tumultuous times.

The kind of friendship ours has developed into is a gift from God. And I am truly blessed to have these 4 wonderful women in my life.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Thought for a Monday

"If you run, you are a runner. It doesn't matter how fast or how far. It doesn't matter if today is your first day or if you've been running for twenty years. There is no test to pass, no license to earn, no membership card to get. You just run."
--John Bingham
I've been following some runners on Twitter and I see where they've run marathons and ultra-runs and this race and that race. Then I look at myself: I've "run" one 5k race and came in last; I still have to walk some on my runs; a 10 minute mile would be super fast for me; my longest run to date is 7.1 miles.
There are days when I look at those statistics, and I think there's no way anybody would consider me a runner; I'm a poser, just out there playing at this running thing. No one is going to take me seriously - I'm way too slow; I don't go far enough.
But today I found this quote online. And it reminded me that it's not how fast or how far or how long. It's the getting out there and just doing it. So thank you, John Bingham, whoever you are. You have made me see that even though I am slow, I really am a runner

Saturday, June 26, 2010

15 books that will always stick with me

I'm a reader. I've been involved in a lifelong love affair with books. Last year I set a goal to read 100 books in the year. This year, I'm not keeping track, but I'm pretty sure I'll meet or exceed that number.

Last summer there was a post running around Facebook on the 15 books that will always stick with me. Here's my list:
1) Where The Red Fern Grows by Wilson Rawls.
2) Bury my Heart at Wounded Knee by Dee Brown
3) The Circus Fire by Stuart O’Nan and Circus Fire Memories, ed. by Don Massey (and other books about the Ringling Bros. Circus Fire in Harford CT in 1944)
4) The Once and Future King by T. H. White
5) Cry, The Beloved Country by Alan Paton
6) The Bible
7) Paradise Lost by John Milton
8) The Outlander Series by Diana Gabaldon
9) Song of Albion trilogy by Stephen Lawhead
10) My Sergei by Ekaterina Gordeeva
11) Spoon River Anthology by Edgar Lee Masters
12) L’Assommoir by Emile Zola (not because i liked it but because it was powerfully written that it was actually painful to read)
13) Les Miserables by Victor Hugo
14) Are you my mother? By P.D. Eastman
15) Where the Wild Things Are by Maurice Sendak

I couldn't stop at just 15, so here a few more:
- To Kill A Mockingbird
- A Raisin in the Sun
- Roots
- Of Mice and Men
- James Herriot's All Creatures Great and Small series

The Great Mystery – Why do I run?

Below is a note that I wrote on Facebook back in October 2009, when running was still a really really new hobby of mine. 9 months later, I'm still a fairly new runner - still learning, still pretty slow, but adding distance all the time.

Some of the details have changed (such as Marc no longer rides his skateboard with me when I run, we actually run together (okay so there's some walking involved. We've adapted the Galloway walk/run program))

But for the most part, it's still an accurate portrait of why I decided to take up running:

Wednesday, October 28, 2009
Running is a new thing for me. I never thought it was something that I wanted to do. But recently that has changed. Why? Well, here's a few reasons:

1. It gives me another activity to do with my husband. They say the family that prays together stays together. That is true. It’s also true if you change one letter in that statement – the family that plays together stays together. And we try to play together as much as we can – bicycles, skateboards, whatever. Now we can run together too. Even though Marc is a stronger and faster runner than I am, we’ve worked out a system. Sometimes, he rides his longboard alongside me as I run, keeping me company. Other times, he goes on his runs, in the opposite direction around the loop and we pass each other, giving encouragement each time.

2. It’s a challenge (and I enjoy a challenge.) It’s tough; it hurts; sometimes it’s torture. But I get a great deal of satisfaction at the end, when I get to say “I DID IT!” I recently ran my first 5k race. I had only been running on a regular basis for a few weeks, and knew I wasn’t ready, but I did it anyway. It was tough, it hurt, it felt like torture. I came in dead last. But, I DID IT

3. It keeps me in shape. I don’t need to lose any weight. But I need to do something stay in shape. Running is a great way to do it. And darn it, it just makes my legs look awesome ;o)