Saturday, December 29, 2012

Well, as of this morning my mileage is 723.65 for the year.  Last year, my mileage was 732.05.  I am just 9 miles from exceeding my mileage from last year! WHOO HOO!! This is doable!

This morning I met Jill and we did 9.1 miles in 1h53m.  I was slowing down the last 4 miles.  I had a stitch in my side from the get-go, and then a charlie horse! But we did not skip any intervals.

Thursday, December 27, 2012

I think I can!

Well, the end of the year is just a few days away.  I knew from summer on, that I was not going to make my 1000 miles this year goal.  So my new goal became surpassing my mileage from last year.  Here we are, a few days away from the end of the year, and I am still like 18 miles short.

But I am not giving up.  My training schedule called for 30 minute run today.  I did 2.55 miles.  I am going to take our dog, Ginny Mac, out for a walk.  Those miles count too.

Please wish me luck.  I am DETERMINED to reach this goal.  And 2013.. watch out.  1000 miles is your fate.

Friday, December 21, 2012

Simple Unexpected Kindness

It was one of those days.  It was a somber morning full of reflection by our nation, and the world, on the recent loss of innocent children and adults last week.  There was also some buzz that this day had come and we were all still here.

So what does salted butter, a mattress, shopping carts, and cookie tins have to do with one another?

I took Bela to school like any other day, and then went to work at church.  Part of my afternoon was spent outdoors changing the lettering on our church sign.  It was being changed from: "Don't leave Christ out of your Christmas" to "All God wants for Christmas is you!" As I scratched my head, struggling to make all of the letters fit where legibly on each line, a small SUV pulled into the church parking lot.  It drove forward then made the turnaround and parked near where I was.  An older couple got out of the car and started approaching me.  I greeted them and asked if they needed any help.  They motioned behind me towards the street and said, "No, we are just here to pick up the mattress that fell off the top of our car a little while ago." I spun around and there indeed was a mattress on the side of the road, actually box springs. I again offered help, and they politely declined.

After a few moments, I noticed they were having trouble lifting it for any distance, so I walked over and picked up the slack in the middle.  Between the three of us, we were still having some awkward trouble carrying it.  Enter three teenage looking boys from out of nowhere! They rushed up and grabbed a couple of spots and hefted the mattress with ease to the couples' SUV.  The teens insisted on helping the couple tie it down as to avoid another mattress mishap.  The couple were thrilled and accepted their help.

We left each other with some smiles, and comments all around about how we were all in the right place at the right time.  We wished each other a Merry Christmas.  I couldn't help but glance over at the church sign, to my unfinished text which only read... "All God wants..." 

Pretty soon it was time to go and pick up Bela from school.  After, we drove over to our local Dollar Store to pick up some cookie tins for Christmas cookie gifts for family.  We picked up a few in our cart and got in the rather long line.  The lady in front of me took notice, verbally and loudly, that there was only one cashier. I could feel her frustration, but mentally noted that I was free for the afternoon, and Bela and I were looking forward to baking together.  We were in no rush.  Once the lady in front of me pulled up to be checked out, she placed the "divider" on the conveyor belt to separate her items from the ones I might soon be adding.  Suddenly the shopper reaches down to the front end of my cart and begins lifting my cookie tins onto the conveyor belt for us.  (We were still both behind the cart and could not reach our items quite yet.) She smiled up at me and said, "Merry Christmas." We both smiled and thanked her and wished her the very same.  

Once we had checked out, Bela and I left the store pushing our cart over to our car.  As we neared our car, an older gentlemen was just pushing his cart out of the way and entering his car to leave.  His cart, along with another one near it, started rolling quickly towards a few parked cars near mine.  The wind was really helping them along too.  Bela and I ran over and grabbed all four carts and decided to walk them back into the store. I have to admit I rarely do that.  I am the "once you're done, push the cart into the cart corral kind-of-a-gal," but I hardly ever walk it all the way back into the store.  I am not proud to admit that.  But it felt like a great, pay it forward moment, after what had just happened in the store.

Our next stop was the grocery store for a few baking ingredients.  I needed flour, sugar, and salted butter. Wow, was I on a roll! I found the flour and sugar on sale.  We rolled our little cart over to the dairy section and was very pleasantly surprised to see that the store brand butter was on sale too! Yay me! Unfortunately they were out of salted butter.  Now I realize for most people, this would not be a big deal.  But a hundred years ago I heard Paula Deen say she only used salted butter, even in her baking.  I took that to heart.  :) While I debated grabbing salted butter in the more expensive name brand, another shopper walked up.  She too was looking for the store brand salted butter that was on sale.  She seemed a bit perturbed that they were out.  I smiled and said, "oh well.  Regular butter will do.  Merry Christmas," and walked away with the store brand unsalted butter.  I figured the cookies would still be good.  Bela and I headed for the check out counter, and had just finished paying when the lady from the dairy section came jogging towards me with her arm held high carrying a box of salted butter yelling, "Ma'am, ma'am! I found some salted butter for you!" I could not believe that she had chased me down just to give me a box of butter.  It was very sweet, and so much appreciated!

I believe that these ordinary items were just catalysts for everyday people to perform unexpected kindness towards one another.  

Individually, they do not seem like much.  Add them up all together, and it equals one amazing day.  

Friday, December 14, 2012


I cannot give up! Still truckin!

Wednesday, December 12, 2012


Everyone is making a big deal about this date.  It is pretty unique! I thought it would be nice to personally name 12 things I am grateful for, and then name and claim 12 blessings that I can be to others.

Grateful for:
1. God and my relationship with Him.  I am not sure where I would be without Him.  I would be lost.
2. My family.  I am so grateful that God entrusted Marcelo and I with a daughter.  And that He brought me to Marcelo in the first place.  I am so glad I said yes to that blind date.
3. Health and able body.  Sometimes I take for granted that I can go out and run.  There are many with physical ailments.  I am grateful that I am able bodied and intentionally do what I can to keep it healthy.
4. Food in our pantry.  Sometimes I crave fancy olives and we may not always have fancy foods.. but we have food that will warm us and nourish us, and I am so grateful for that.
5. Friends.  Friends that bless me with trusting me with their thoughts, dreams, and ideas.  Friends that are there for me, and allow our family to mesh with theirs.  
6. Nieces and Nephews.  I consider them my own, there is no distance in my love for them all.
7. My parents and sister. I love them so much.  Sometimes it hurts how much I love them and miss them every single day.  
8. My in laws.  Each of them is special and unique, and I learn so much for them all.  I know that we are loved!
9. The opportunities.  They seem endless.  God gave me a mind that is always thinking, "what's next?" Some ideas fly, others don't.  But I love them all!
10. A home.  I remember as a young girl dreaming of my home.  I remember wanting to paint every room a different color.  I live there now.  And it is warm, and loving, and safe.
11. Our pets.  Puf, Ginny, and Luna.  Each one makes me smile and love them more each day.
12. The many families in my life.  I am so blessed to know so many families in our area.  I love seeing the children growing and prospering.  It is such a blessing.

Blessing others:
1. Kindness.  Extend small and large kindnesses to others every day.  
2. Forgiveness.  Forgive those that hurt without intent.  It only holds me captive.
3. Expectation.  Expect good out of people, not bad.  
4. Love.  Display love with my actions, not just my words.
5. Generosity.  This does not always mean money.  Being generous means giving up my seat, or spot in line.  Holding doors open.
6. Please and thank you.  We teach, and often insist, that our kids should use good manners, and sometimes we often neglect to use them ourselves.
7. Keep my house a home.  Intentionally do the little things that keep our home clean, comfortable, and welcoming.. not just to strangers, but to the people  love the most, my family.
8. Exhale with JOY not ANGER.  I am famous for it.. my deep sighs of frustration.  I want to switch it out for a sign of JOY! JOY that I have clothes to fold, JOY that I have dishes to unload from our WORKING dishwasher.  "Give thanks in all circumstances!"
9. Peace.  My Mom always said, "don't say anything if you have nothing nice to say." Sometimes we hear injustice happening around us.  I am all for standing up for what is right, but sometimes silence, combined with prayer, is even more powerful!
10. Smiles.  They cost nothing, and they feel good! Plus they are contagious!
11. Empathy.  Most times, it's not about me.  It's about the other person, what they are going through, what they are struggling with.  Thinking it's about me, how I did something wrong, is selfish.  Go there, and put myself in their shoes.  How can I be more understanding? How could I help?
12. Prayer.  Pray pray pray without ceasing.  Pray for the crossing guard, the guy that cut me off in the road, the mail delivery person, teachers, co workers, neighbors, our community.  Prayer connects us with God and His will.  

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

Training with a partner!

My miles to date: 641.63.  Getting there.

For the past 5 weeks, I have been training on Saturday mornings with Jill, my sis in law.  We have been meeting at 6 a.m. and going out from her home.  She lives near a 1 mile bridge, so we have been including that in our workouts.

The farthest we have gone so far is 6.17 miles together.  We are keeping our training for now at a 1:1 interval.  We plan on increasing to 2:1 over the next 2 weeks.

This weekend we are participating together in the Rudolph Run 5k to benefit the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society.  I am very excited about it.

I had some knee tenderness the past few days so I took Sunday and Monday off from running.  This morning I went out, and took it easy.  Just did 20 minutes = 1.7 miles.  Still a bit tight in the knee, but it felt good to get out there!