We just need to...

"We just need to extend the number of days before we freak out when Liz has a fever".

Advice from my nurse when I pointed out this whole "low grade fever for several days" thing has happened to me before.


Awesome Monday

Monday was pretty good (once I bailed on the runners and slept late; sorry, I hope you had a good run).

Stayed the full 10 hours at work.  Trust me, this is a good thing.  I'll tell you why at about 2pm on Thursday.

New episode of House which I found hysterically funny.  I'm not a parent, but seriously, who hasn't wanted to paint their kids toys with sriracha sauce and use it as a teachable moment?

Quick trip to the gym for a good behavior attendance check in.

Laundry - done!

New episode of Castle.  I have no idea how I found this series but I freaking love it.  It's like Star Trek meets NYPD Blue.  I know right?  But it's such a good show.

Jesse Ventura is suing the TSA for sexual harassment.  I think he's doing this for my own personal entertainment.  Thank goodness we found someone with enough money and free time to do this thing right.

And just before bed: Jay Leno's headlines.


A serious case of Cabin Fever

Quick, anyone - when's the last time I ran?  I think Wednesday night I went running at my happy place.  Thursday I got a hair cut.
Friday I found out I need two fillings and then walked at the gym and talked with a guy who'd run Ragnar the first year I did.  Friday the real temperature low was -13*.  No one knows about the wind chill because we were too scared to ask.
Winter sucks!

Saturday and today I basically stayed in my condo.  And was a hermit.  I'm reminded by reading posts from last February and March that it actually gets worse before it gets better.  Because when this stuff melts it makes this huge puddles (that look like small lakes) that make obstacles in my path for several weeks.

Winter is even more ridiculous when 9* counts as a milder temperature
Tomorrow, with the assumption that the temperature will at least be a positive digit, the girls are planning a run and I am planning to join them.  My yak trax finally gave up; a small piece of rubber that holds the strap on broke.  I ordered a new pair from Amazon and did duct tape surgery on the current pair, hoping they'll work tomorrow and all the way 'till the new ones come. 


January running crazies

Four day weekend: Awesome.
Four days of dreading returning to work today: Not so awesome.

Thankfully I have good friends (and their dogs who are going to get up and need a walk anyways) to get me through.  There was a spirited debate amongst us on Facebook last night about running this morning.  Ultimately only me and Beth decided to give it a try.  (Seriously, Beth has this dog that always gets up at 5am.  It's one of the best things to happen for my training in a long time.)

Winter blows!
I agreed to run this morning in the mildly bitter cold because I'd already seen the low temperatures for the rest of the week and knew there was no way in the world I'd be running then.  (The low was 9* today.)

At 5am I woke up and facebooked Beth for a moment on the merits of not running.  (At 5am and 9* everything can be an excuse not to run.)  Ultimately I found my pants and my work ethic and headed out the door.

I got to St Paul and Beth tried to head out her door.  Only to fail.  (I can't go out the back door, there's 56" of snow back there that we haven't shoveled.)  It brought up an interesting opportunity for some ingenuity and a big opening talk about possible winter evacuation routes from the home.

Eventually Beth got out and tried to kill me on the run *ahem* we had a great run.  Happily neither one of us fell down this time.  The run started with the words, "it's not *that* cold" followed by "I can't feel my face".  All was well when we were moving.   I swear I got hypothermia in the car on the way home.  (Any runner who's run and then got in the car all sweaty afterwords knows exactly what I'm talking about.)

Work was pretty rough.  I went out for Chiptole for lunch and to call my mommy (yes, work was that rough) and lost my keys.  Which sucked.  But opened up the possibility of the best moment of the entire day: the sweet Barnes N Noble lady who helped me find the keys again.  Relief is quite a powerful feeling.


Oh, sweet, 15* isn't that cold

The St Paul ladies invited me for a bonus Friday run (I suspect they looked at the weather from the rest of  today and the weekend and wanted to squeeze one more in) and I totally took them up on the offer.

So at 5am I was getting out of bed, yelling at my alarm clock and being generally amazed that I slept as well as I did.  (Those 3 ibuprofen I took sure did something.)

The line of the day goes to miss Beth who declared towards the end of the run that she was really glad she came out.  (We are too!)  To show her joy, she face planted *ahem*, leaped body and face first into the snow on the sidewalk in front of her.  And then showed us all her great sense of humor. 

The snow out there, wow.  Running is tough.  I think by the time the snow melts (looking like about May now) my calves will double in size.  After that one really big storm most of the snow has come and inch or so at a time.  Which means some homeowners (you know who you are) are all 'well, that's not even enough to shovel really'.  It adds up and gets uneven and thick.  Sometimes we look like we're drunk just trying to get through it.  For an approximation of the effect, try running through quicksand.  Good luck.

After running I got down to the business of my first Friday 'chore and errands' day.  I'm supposedly working a 4 day week now (more on that in a second) so I'm reserving Friday for all kinds of stuff.  Today on my list was

  • Get new wiper blades - per usual, the universe provided a little man to help me change them
  • Bank to cash check - the people at Wells Fargo on Lake Street are super nice.
  • Go to the YWCA for just for the good behavior attendance thing - it's 1030am and the parking lot is fullOh, the January gym crazies.
  • Target for a storage container, pepsi and gum -  well hello Lake Street Target.  It's been so long since I've visited you. It actually looked pretty nice in there and at 1030 on a Friday, no screaming kids.  Win for me.
  • Good Will - because that stuff just had to go
  • The Co-op - to get food for Christmas dinner on Sunday with my pooky bear and miss herself who is now a cat lady
  • The liquor store - same reason as the co-op plus it's supposed to snow this weekend so I'm planning ahead

After that, I did actually have to work for a few hours.  I had something unexpected happen at work yesterday.  After said experience, I stopped working and saved the rest for later.

Now I'm sitting on my couch, not having to work again until Tuesday and ready for this next 'snow storm' and 'cold snap' we're supposed to get.


I $%*&ing hate this $%#@ing day

Let the catharsis begin.

5:00am: shutup shutup stopmakingthatnoise muh directed in the general direction of my alarm clock followed by getting out of bed and gearing up for a run.
5:30am Runners on Ice 2: Dashing through the Snow.  Thank goodness for Beth.  Running was the best part of my day.  (Dude, I hope your dog is feeling, um, better.)
7:15am Working from home begins.  Yeah, I started that early, you'd think I'd have more hours in today.
8:45am Run to the clinic to pick up my contact lenses.  Pay for said lenses.  Walk off without them. You have got to be kidding me!
9:30am Working - the social work student did an excellent job with the home visit
12:00pm Team meeting - I think it was ok, I was still thinking about the previous visit during most of the meeting...
1:30pm Prepare to facilitate a strategic planning session for a collaborative of several agencies across the metro.  (Not sure what I was thinking when I agreed to this.)
2:00pm-4:00pm Facilitate said strategic planning.  I  am exhausted.
5:00ish Try to print the letters of recommendation my teeanger asked me for 24hours ago.  My printer picks this exact $%#* moment to stop working or run out of ink or whatever.  Troubleshooting ensues.
5:30pm Head over to Office Max in Minneapolis rushour traffic.  I am in the seventh level of hell.  Driving anywhere in Minneapolis is ridiculous right now because roads are about half their normal width.  It sucks up and down.  Office Max can refill my ink cartridges.  Sweet!
6:00ish Get home.  Printer still thinks there's no black ink in the cartridge.  More troubleshooting ensues.  It still doesn't work.  *#$^ off I say.
7:00pm -ish Head back over to the office with my teenager to print off recommendation letters.  I nearly bit my kids head off when she put in her iPod head phones.  (I will turn this car around and print your letters a different day if you can't stand to be in the car with me and have a conversation...)  Poor thing, it'd been a rough day for both of us.
8:00pm and beyond I finally got home and abandoned the idea of working anymore tonight.  I was feeling like I had a lot to get done because I'm trying to work all my hours in 4 days (and it's more hours than I expected when the whole '4 day' thing started so I'm even more confused).  I talked to Amanda for a while and heard about school.  I also emailed her and my Pooky Bear about Sunday when we have our belated Christmas.  I'm still trying to decide if running or sleeping tomorrow morning would be the better course of action.


Holy abs batman!

After having such a good run on Wednesday morning (Happy Birthday to you!), I decided for an encore performance with the St Paul runners.  I normally only go over there once a week because it's far to drive and early to get up in the morning.  But this week I started working all my hours in four work days instead of five so getting up earlier was good.  Plus I knew I wouldn't exercise by myself.  (Thank you again for running me up and down the street!)

Before - yes, I do run with a reflective vest.  You should wear one too!

After - notice how my hat has turned to frost?  I noticed, particularly on my ears, too!

Thursday was a long work day but at the end I was all "hello 3-day weekend, how shall I fill my time?" Turns out, Olive Garden with a teenager and then a movie and bottle of wine with Amanda on the torture rack.

Amanda convinced me I needed to sleep on the torture rack so we could get breakfast the next day. (Really, I didn't even have that much wine, I can go home and sleep in a normal bed.) I'm glad I stayed because my coffee cup at the Uptowner was always full and the eggs Benedict rocked.

After that I went to the gym. I decided it was going to be a walking day and listened to an hilarious episode of Car Talk (the one where the lady's AC vents are dispensing dog food). I actually did have to go to work, but it was only for a short time for a retirement party. It was really fun to hear some of my Russian-speaking colleagues tell their stories about moving to this country and a nice time to visit.

Saturday morning I woke up early and got pastries Happy Birthday to you! and headed over to a pilates class at this women's home studio in St Paul. Some of the St Paul runners got there early and took a class with one of our own as a birthday surprise. I was assured that I'd be sore after.

We then headed back to Heather's house for lattes courtesy of her husband (who, coincidentally, had stopped to get pastries at the exact same place I went). Sorry John, we'll coordinate better next time.

Sunday morning I got up and thought, 'oh, yeah, I can feel my abs but it's kind of a pleasant soreness'. Then I tried to put my pants on.

I learned an important lesson about the January gym crazies too. I thought it would be awful and miserable and packed at the gym. I got there around 9am and found the lot about 60% full, waaay fewer cars than what I'd imagined. I hopped right on an elliptical and had a great workout. An hour later, heading back out to my car I realized that the lot was totally full and streets around the gym were filling up fast. Note to self - Sunday at the gym is not awful as long as I arrive by 9am.

Then I headed out to breakfast at Maria's (mmmm, corn pancakes) with a friend and later today I'm going to see The King's Speech.

Weather prediction antics

Yesterday I was talking to some friends about running this morning.  Yes, we are that crazy.  The discussion revolved around the temperature at the time we would be running.  I always look at the low temperature for the night because that's about what it is when we run.  I checked some websites and had an hilarious experience.
The low is supposed to be -23* tonight?  That can't be right!  By the way, no freaking way would we have run.

The -23* must have been a typo because when I checked back a while later the low was predicted to be -8*, much closer to the -10* we'd originally expected.

Actual temperature when I woke up -2*, but I woke up late because we didn't run.



Is 8pm too early for bed

This winter has been rough so far.  The hardest part for me is getting out of bed.  Usually if I can get out of bed and get the day started, I do okay.  Sadly, usually getting out of bed feels like physical torture.  This morning, to provide encouragement, I got up at 5am and headed over to run with the St Paul ladies.  (Okay, seriously, all I have to do is show up over there and things will be good, just go, running with them always turns out well...)

I'm not sure if I'm loosing my mind or really just need more sleep in the winter because it's 8pm and I'm ready to go to bed.  (Hey, it's dark outside already, why not?)  Also, I have a tendency to wear this hat all the time, inside or out because it's soft and I like it.  Just like a pair of wool socks.  Is that something I should worry about?


In which I reflect freely on the weather and the gym crazies

While I'm sitting here waiting for the next episode of Castle to start (I love this show!) let me just say: Brrr.  I checked the weather and got this rather discouraging news:

My choices tomorrow are to get up at 5am and head out with some awesome running partners or to get up slightly later and head to the gym and run around the track.

Oh the gym, let's talk about that for a moment. January is the month of the all the new year's resolution crazies to join. They're not crazy in the eccentric, or wild, or rude (mostly they're pretty nice), it's more the sheer number of them. So January is a tough month at the gym and I will only go in the morning to avoid the wildness.

I got kind of discouraged because I wanted to go to the gym this morning but I didn't sleep well last night. Instead of running I let myself sleep in 'till 8:30 or so. I think I need to man up, go to the gym and get in the groove. Then I can use running with the awesome ladies as a reward. (Oh yes, 4 miles in the ice and snow at 5:30am in the sub-freezing temperatures is a reward compared to being at the gym. Maybe it's the company?)


Why is it so cold outside?

It's been a pretty cold new year so far.  Today I went for a run around Lake Nokomis with Beth.  Remember that time we went running and I broke her.  She pretty much came in that condition today.  (I hope you feel better!)

This shirt is a Christmas present from my mommy!

Total YakTrax day.  It was super icy.

We took one lap around the lake.  The funniest exchange was
Beth: We could go for a second lap.
Me: Not at this pace we can't.

It was really cold.  All that Cincinnati running in the 30* air, and the gym time in the 70* air has really ruined me.  I'm not sure if this means I should go to the gym more or suck it up and run outside more.  I'll have to contemplate that.


Goodbye 2010 - best wishes

I get the impression that 2010 was a really rough year for some of my friends.  Looking back, it was pretty good to me.  Here's how it went:

Here's how my past few years have gone 2009, 2008, and 2007