Friday, September 13, 2013

Things I’ve Accomplished This Week

Sometimes I feel frustrated when I don’t think I’ve accomplished anything this week.  During these times, it makes me feel better to write down the things I’ve accomplished so it appears that I’ve actually done something.  So here goes….my list for this week:

1. Vacuumed, dusted, and wet-mopped the first floor (after the contractors left – yay!) just in time for it to get dirty/dusty again when the painters arrived (boo)

2.  Spent three days unpacking my kitchen stuff and cooked for the first time in over eight weeks

3.       Sat on a chair and ate dinner at our dining room table like a civilized person

4.       Had Air Boss ask his doctor (who happens to be my doctor as well) a personal GYN question on my behalf

5.       Got super frustrated at ‘Shroom for losing a math assignment (which only took two full days to complete), a graphic organizer to a composition assignment, and his library book all within 24 hours (we eventually found 2 out of the 3 but a lot of time was wasted)

6.       Added a scum sucker (Plecostomos) to our little fish tank so we wouldn’t have to clean the tank so often; two days later, the tank is clean….wonder if this little sucker can live outside of water…like in my living room, my kitchen, the dusty corners of my house….

7.       Began reading Enders Game with the kids after we had to give up on The Fellowship of the Ring less than two chapters from the end; unfortunately the Tolkein  book is lost under plastic tarp somewhere  in our house

8.       Read only one book this week due to a somewhat chaotic schedule

9.       Had a botched morning run when I thought that I had “cheated” by running 5 minutes less than my required run; made up for it in the next run only to realize that I had skipped a week in the schedule and was running longer than required (note to self: figure out how to read training schedules)

10.   Got up before 6 AM every day this week so far

Tuesday, September 3, 2013

What I Did This Summer...

....was live without a kitchen for almost 8 weeks.  Although summer ended two weeks ago when school began, we are still operating without a kitchen.  Over the past couple of months, our home has been whittled down to one bathroom (down from 3) and about 500 SF (down from 2,100).

I've tried not to complain about it because I know that to have the financial means to renovate a 40+ year old kitchen and tiny master bathroom is a luxury.  Despite this thinking, I'm beginning to reach my limit.  And while I think the construction workers in our home are super nice, I'm wanting to give them the boot and reclaim my house (minus the huge dumpster on my driveway and the 200 pounds of dust covering every surface on every piece of furniture in every room).

Something about seeing washed breakfast bowls next to the toenail clipper on the bathroom counter just doesn't feel right.  Nor does the rice cooker steaming our lunch next to 'Shroom's not-quite-thoroughly-cleaned-orthodontics render a healthy (or any) appetite in me.

With my fingers and toes crossed, we should be able to cook our first meal in the kitchen within the next week.  And I'll be able to take care of personal business in my new bathroom without elementary school aged children entering without the prerequisite knock.

Framing of new master bath

What a difference 5 (long) weeks makes! (don't mind the trash barrel)

Wednesday, August 28, 2013

Today's Running Partner

I was honored (and surprised) to have a willing running partner for this morning's run.  My 9 year old Lolli told me the night before that she wanted to come with me.  I felt badly for waking her up almost an hour earlier than her normal time but she woke up fine with tons of energy (no fair).

I just had to post this "post-running" photo.  She's still smiling so it couldn't have been all that bad, huh?

I'm thinking of yanking 'Shroom out of bed early this Saturday morning for my (slightly) longer run.  I think this kid is a natural distance runner as he has shown me on numerous occasions to have enough stamina to run long distances cold (complaining the whole time but running nevertheless) and speed to dust me all the while chasing birds and stomping on unfortunate bugs on his path.  I better warn the birds and the bugs....

Tuesday, August 27, 2013

Running For Clean Water

Well, it's been TWO FULL DAYS since I've made the commitment to run the 2014 LA Marathon.  All of a sudden, 28 weeks seems like a mere blink of an eye.  In these two days, I have questioned the sanity of my decision to run more miles that I have run in the past 2 years combined, but I haven't felt compelled yet to wimp out (ahh....that's when 28 weeks seems like an adequate amount of time to come to my senses).

Maybe I should back up a bit.  I won't be running for myself - not for some bucket list of accomplishments I can check off - not for some dare or challenge made by myself or someone else.  Getting in better shape for my own benefit hasn't been enough of a motivator for me in the past.  I don't like trying things with a high fail-rate as I'm a self-professed Type-A control freak (and us control freaks tend to avoid failure like a dead skunk on a hot summer day).  I don't take risks.  I don't put myself in positions to fail.  And I don't run.

But I couldn't help but feel choked up when I heard in this Sunday's message at church that there are countless children in Africa who walk miles upon miles to get water for their families...water that is a cloudy brown...water that I would be disgusted to see in my toilet bowl...and water that would be deemed too dirty to even wash our cars.  Many of these children can't even go to school because their days are consumed by the endless trips to polluted and disease-infested water holes.

If an eight year old girl can walk 10 km three times a day to retrieve water (barefoot with a heavy bucket to tote), I can as sure as heck run, walk--and if need be, crawl 26.2 miles.  With shoes designed for running.  On smooth pavement.  With people cheering me on.  For this girl who does this daily, there is no one cheering her on.  There are no fancy running shoes.  There are no accolades for traversing the miles.  There is no access to websites or FB for people to post encouragement for her endless journeys.  And there is no clean water for her to drink at the finish line.

I'll be posting my training milestones (as an indicator that I'm still committed to running this race with Team World Vision) for some good laughs and hopefully as encouragement and testament to you all that surely anything is possible with God.  If you feel compelled, I would love for you to consider partnering with me financially in making clean water available to those in Africa.

Thank you.