Slow and Steady

Monday, May 30, 2011

Monday Motivation: Give

Unless someone like you
cares a whole awful lot, 
nothing is going to get better.  
It's not.  
~Dr. Seuss

I wanted to do something fun and different for my 32nd birthday and got this recommendation: Get 32 people to donate $32. Thanks for the idea DS! I was afraid to post this right away for fear I couldn't do it, but if 1 person donates, then this effort will be a success. Please feel free to make a charitable contribution to any organization you want. Below are some of my current favorites. Please choose one of these or one of your own and leave a comment that you donated.

Please do this by June 26th and help me meet this goal of inspiring 32 people to GIVE $32. Shoot, pull out $32 singles and pass them out to 32 homeless people, it doesn't have to be an organization, the idea is just to give.

Thanks in advance for participating. 

Temple Israel Stockton-rebuilding the school fund

Hospice of San Joaquin-In Memory of my grandparents

Saint Joseph's Hospital-In Memory of my cousin, their ICU team was amazing

Why I Kick A$$: I have made it over the big potty training hurdle with my Bug! It's all consistency after this.

Thankful Three
  1. For a day with my babies while the hubby is off fishing
  2. For friends that come up with great ideas
  3. For my birthday count down

Friday, May 27, 2011

Friday Five: Friendship

Life is partly what we make it, 
and partly what is made by the friends we choose.
~Tennessee Williams

I am feeling a little sappy today so Friday Fives is all about Friendship. I will admit and my friends will tell you, I am kind of friendship retarded. Seriously. I have analyzed myself to bits and my friends aren't shy with feedback either. I had very few girl friends growing up. I had my BFF from kindergarten, the new addition from 2nd grade, and my college roommate all of whom I still keep in touch with today. I have my current crowd that I am trying to nurture too, the new friends, the ones I hope to have for a long time to come. Sure there were friends that weaved in and out through grade school, high school, college and jobs. Those that came, went and are back again. You know those that burned bright for a short while, but fizzled for no one reason. A lot of times it is growing apart, changing interests or social groups, or worse, choosing to separate. 

I have had lots of great people in my life and very few not so good. I am really lucky, but I am still friendship retarded. I am awful at keeping in touch. If I can't randomly text you or Facebook you, we're likely to lose touch. I am terrible at making phone calls, writing letters and sending gifts. Don't get me wrong, I think about it and even have a gift right now in my trunk that has been sitting there for more than 2 months because I haven't hit the post-office yet. Maybe that is why I love blog world so much, we can all love each other with the 2 minutes every 3 Friday of every odd month, and we're rarely offended. We're vain. Blog world is about us and I think there is an understanding that the time commitment thing is going to vary greatly.

My sisters are 10 and 8 years older than I am so I pretty much grew up an only child. I had lots of cousins in my home town...more than 20 first cousins in a 1 mile radius. So my husband's hypothesis is quite interesting. My cousins were my friends and thus when we fought we probably fought harder than friends would because we knew the damage wouldn't be as lasting. After all we're family, we're going to see each other pretty much every day and have to love each other anyway. The other part is, our family is pretty prideful. Total grudge holders, so as hard as we fought, we also knew to choose our battles carefully because making up was a bitch. With regular friends I couldn't fight the same, so we rarely fought. My bad, I didn't speak up for myself much and those few icky friends, really got the best of me. Can you say doormat? I also didn't really know how to make up well because I totally got the "hold a grudge" gene. Don't make me go chronological on your A$$. Yup, I have a mental record, a historical version of how everything goes down, all the time.

Family secrets? You know we have got'em. Yup, if stuff went down, you kept it in the family. So when friends came along it was kind of awkward, because while I am a totally sharer...I talk way too much, I am not exactly an open book. I will connect with you, share common interests and blabber on in this blog in an effort to self actualize, but as much as I tell you my fellow bloggers (which is a lot) and what I share with my friends, there are a choice few who I will really confide in, trust and totally open myself to. Some of it is to maintain that sense of pride, not get embarrassed or burned, but the rest is because I honestly don't think most people have the capacity to get me or some of the crazy shit that seems to happen in my life. Pretty vain I know, but that is just me, putting faith in others is difficult. And this my blogger friends is a deal breaker for friendship candidates. I have had a few "almost" friendships that ended or were derailed because they could totally sense that they were putting in more than I was willing to give. Are you Guarded?

Here are 5 Awesome Friend Shout Outs for this week:
  1. Sunday, my friend WC totally came through and saved me when I thought some guys were following me and the kids home. She's kind of a hot shit parole officer so I knew not only would she be there for me, she would whoop A$$ in our stranger danger situation. Turns out they were probably casing my neighborhood for general opportunities, but I was scared and totally vulnerable and she was there for me and my family. WC is one of those kind souls that can console, shift into a bad a$$ in .1 second and totally be the girly wine drinking, Jane Austen movie watching, running buddy and book club hangout girl that anyone reading this would love to have in a friend.
  2. AW pulled out a nice showing this week by doing a double date movie: me, AW and our mother-in-laws. I know, how cute is that. She is one of those that we weave in and out of hang out frequency, but that we know we can call on any time. The fact that we work together makes not talking every day by phone or whatever totally offset by the hellos in the hallway as we hustle off to do our different jobs.
  3. DS-gotta love her. There is a very weird bond between us. We think alike, can be total tomboys and emotional girl wrecks 2 seconds later...oh and our husbands think that we're having a love affair. We live in different cities and don't see each other nearly enough, but the phone call or text every other week or Facebook post reminds us we are connected. If I could live up to being a better me, I would want to be like DS. This week her message was that we need to spend time together soon. Just saying that we "needed" to hang out says it. Not it would be nice, or we should get together sometime, etc. When she said needed, I totally got it, because an hour of DS time could keep me sane for a month.
  4. EO, love love love her. This week she called not for me, but to check on my mom and make sure she was doing ok after my grandmother passed. See that is good people right there. Sure grandma died a few weeks ago, sure there were condolences right after, but EO understands that the pain continues no matter how much time has passed and is considerate of that. Did I mention she probably single handedly outfitted my son via her sons hand me downs? Family girl, trust worthy and my Comadre in every sense of the word.
  5. My MIL. Yes I know it is sappy, but I feel like we are totally reconnecting. We were tight, hung out, shared books, watched movies together and then had a few awkward periods in the last couple of years. Sometimes we were closer than others, hanging out more often that other times, but recently not only are we connecting more often, it hasn't gotten easier. There is nothing worse that the awkward period after a disconnect while you are trying to reconnect and we are totally passed that and just hanging out. She gets all kinds of Friday High Fives for getting me through two days of 132 Dobos Torte cakes too:)
Why I Kick A$$: I make good friend choices and that includes awesome bloggers who inspire and motivate me to step up my game as a person.
Thankful Three
  1. For my hubby, while he wasn't in the shout out five, I am a better me because of him
  2. For my cousins who remain my tightest and closests friends to this day
  3. For the this blog

Thursday, May 26, 2011

Thoughtful Thursday: 32 Days to 32

And in the end it is not the years in your life that count. 
It's the life in the years that count.
~Abraham Lincoln

I hate when I don't have time to blog daily. Yes I could "make time," but honestly in my free time I have been either going to bed early, spending 3 minutes on a game of Boggle on my iPhone or dozing off to DVR'd episodes of Oprah before bed. I want to write about how the Bug and I had our first girls sleep over at my cousin's with her daughter.
How Sunday I had another crazy stranger danger incident in my neighborhood when walking with the kids, or how I volunteered 9 hours over two days making 132 cakes for a fundraiser at my synagogue. Did I mention I got one run in this week? Yup, just one and it was Tuesday and it was only two miles. The great thing about Tuesday was capping it off with a chocolate milkshake with my mother-in-law right before we watched Something Borrowed at the theater. Such a great movie, makes me want to read the books. I am a total sucker for a chick flick.

So what am I going to write about? How about how I "failed to appear" for Jury Duty and had to go today. Lucky me, not only was I dismissed, but my duty is fulfilled through January 2013! The fact that I am sitting on the couch eating cereal, blogging and watching the biggest loser finale on DVR. I am a little annoyed I only know who won because I saw a magazine cover in the grocery store line today. Nope not gonna write about that either, I am going to start blabbering on about my approaching birthday...32 days from now. I will be 32 and I kind of like the idea of doing a count down so here goes, 32 days to 32. What kind of life have I put into 32 years? A lot! I have been thinking so much lately about where I am, where I want to be and where I have been and gee whiz I sure have had plenty of life experience. I did a questionnaire once on Facebook where I got to place an "X" next to all the things I have done in my life, and wouldn't you know most were checked off. So Abe Lincoln, can I call you Abe? I have done a darn good job at packing in the experience. So in the days leading up to 32 I want to continue the trend. Any suggestions? I wish I could lose 32 pounds because then I would be at my high school weight, but let's not talk crazy here people. I am already doing a weekend birthday trip, but other than that I am open to ideas.
Why I Kick A$$: Uh, I lead a crew of people over 2 days to make 132 cakes. 132! Hell yeah!!! Did I mention it was pound cake, layered with chocolate butter cream filling, then completely encased in chocolate and then frozen so when you slice into it is a hard chocolate shell with a yummy moist layers inside. I am quite the chocolate queen.
Thankful Three
  1. For Crispix cereal
  2. For DVR
  3. For Boggle

Saturday, May 21, 2011

Saturday Sampler: Trampled by Turtles

"Try to be like the turtle--at ease in your own shell.
~Bill Copeland
Small Bar, Bad Lighting, Sweaty Girls. Probably should've powdered my nose...and cheeks, and forehead...

It is amazing how if you don't change, life repeats itself. I ran a half marathon Sunday. I ran it without training. I took one rest day, which led to another, then another and here on sit on Saturday with ZERO workouts logged since Sunday.

On Thursday I got to go my first Trampled by Turtles concert. It was in a small bar in Sacramento. We have loved this band for a good while now, but I could not have anticipated how fantastic this show was going to turn out. Here is a link to a video of probably their most popular song.
Today was Duder's first Tot T-Ball game, it was super fun. My hubby took the pics, so sorry folks, you don't get to see my little left handed thrower, right handed batter, first base playing 3-yr old. He's pretty super fantastic.

Today is a girls day. Super Hubby has taken Duder on a camping trip. Well kinda. They'll hike and explore, then set up their sleeping bags in the bed of the truck. (we have a camper shell so they won't get too cold) So that leaves me and the Bug. What should we do? Well she's napping and should be too, but after she wakes up I think we might shop and maybe go for a short run-she's not a fan of stroller time.

Why I Kick A$$: Because I am a great date. Super Hubby and I had such an amazing time Thursday night.
Thankful Three
  1. My niece for coming as Designated Driver
  2. For some quiet time right now
  3. For my cousin M.R. she is starting her weight loss journey and is such an inspiration

Sunday, May 15, 2011

Sunday Summary: Who needs training...

Happiness is not a goal; 
it is a by-product.  
~Eleanor Roosevelt
Sand and Jury Duty
I might have found myself this weekend. Last week totally slipped through my fingers. Seriously like sand, slipping through my fingers I have no idea where my days went. No workouts, I can't recall what I had for dinners, what I did at's all a blur. Did I mention the week before was similar? I had a jury summons. I was sure I was group 102, I repeated to many people that I was group 102 and was likely to be in a selection group. Come Monday I check the website. It says check again at 11:00. I check again and ta-da my group was dismissed! Woo, Hoo, jury fulfilled through January 2012. NOPE. I was group 104 and supposed to report Tuesday May 3rd. Oops. Got a friendly "Failure to Serve" postcard in the mail. I think they trick you with that darn postcard. It is the kind of thing you don't pay attention to and toss. Fortunately my husband reads mail. Now I have to explain to my boss that the brilliant person he just hired to be his Assistant District Manager doesn't pay attention to detail. I am going to go ahead and plead grandma funeral cloudy brain syndrome.
Finding Me
Saturday I went to a summer kick off party...albeit early. It was crazy windy and cold, but I had a wonderful time meeting new people, talking alot and eating and drinking like I have a fast metabolism. During this party I received 2 text messages. One from my weekday running partner, he was still sick with the flu and not running today's half marathon with me. My sorority sister who I signed up for this race with also texted, she too had the flu and wasn't going to make it. Ugh, I am terrible with be accountable to myself. First I did not train for today's half marathon. I was running it to be supportive of my sorority sister and to hang out with my running partner. When they both bailed, I was certain I would too. Also, this was what the forecast held for race day, 70% chance of rain from 7-10:
I checked my Facebook page before bed and saw that my running partner posted to my paged, "See you tomorrow." Ok, I needed to show up now. I laid out my clothes and had intentions of leaving my house by 6am for the 7am race. Gotta love small town country runs, I showed up at 6:47 am, parked on the country road that was also the race start, jogged a quarter mile to the start line and still had 3 minutes to spare. I started the run a little faster than planned. I felt like shooting for an 11 min mile pace was reasonable even though I hadn't trained. Here is the play by play, mile by mile:
  1. Mile 1 10:44-slightly too fast
  2. Mile 2 11:01-better (I love my garmin)
  3. Mile 3 11:08
  4. Mile 4 10:58-started out ok, had a PowerGel, ran by a dairy and smelled such awfulness that I quite literally had to stop and throw up, then hustle to get out of the of that stretch of course
  5. Mile 5 11:11
  6. Mile 6 13:01-this included a 2 minute potty break
  7. Mile 7 11:01
  8. Mile 8 11:12
  9. Mile 9 11:02 Here I realized I was trucking along sub-11 and stopped and walked to regain my heart rate/breathing a little
  10. Mile 10 11:19 the problem with walking in mile 9 is that it's a slippery slope. I walked a lot in the remaining miles of the run.
  11. Mile 11 11:53 worst mile of the run...ok not as bad as dairy farm, throwing up on the side of the road, so 2nd worst. My hips were sore, my left IT started to remind me that I probably should have trained for the run.
  12. Mile 12 11:14
  13. Mile 13 10:40 Almost done! How did I run 10:40 and still walk so much? I was running faster than that:)
  14. Mile 13.1 10:20 Woo Hoo!
Thoughts about the run. Well I finished in about 2:28 and I am happy that I was so consistent with my pace. Not professionally consistent, but really as best as I could do. I love my Garmin and it helped so much, but honestly I could feel my pace today and only used it to confirm that I was moving too fast a couple different times. I think having the Garmin has taught me to learn what my pace feels like and looks like in numbers. Also, people are funny. One lady ducked behind rail cars, buildings, fences, trees, you name it every half mile. Really? Do people have to go pee that much?! I love the diversity of clothes. I saw sweats and ked style generic sneaks and bright shiny new outfits with reflective strips and arm bands on each arm, head phones, fuel belts, wrist things...geez it was kind of ridiculous, but hey, who am I to judge. I had a hat, ear warmers, a buff, gloves, two long sleeves and my Garmin. Did you see the picture above? Yeah it was supposed to pour rain all morning. I dressed for that. It didn't rain. I was hot the first 4 miles, but it cooled down after so I probably could've done without the buff. It did help a little when I tried covering my face during cow dairy gross smelling mile.

Today I really feel like the by-product of my athletic endeavors really was happiness. There is such amazing sense of pride in completing anything challenging. Finishing this run strong and consistent made me remember that I am awesome and even my month plus long derailment does not make me a failure and did not set me back significantly. Finishing this run and then playing basketball made me feel strong, capable and helped me realize as bad as this past month plus of sporadic workouts (at best) has been, it is not as bad as I thought. Time to suck it up, be happy and move forward.
Why I Kick A$$: Because not only did I do 13.1 this morning, but I also played basketball this afternoon. Yup I kick A$$ because my legs still worked!
Thankful Three
  1. Pear Press--so delicious
  2. Sweet Tamale Corn Cakes at Cheesecake Factory
  3. My husband, damn he's good looking

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

Tuesday Tidbit: Mexican Mothers Day

My facebook horoscope by Rick Levine--I think then stars are telling me to get off my a$$ and kick it into gear both on my marathon training as well as my new job.

Today's the day to shift into gear and put your plan into motion. You've had enough time to process your feelings and to consider what's ahead and you can't put off the inevitable. Instead of waiting for a better moment, take the first steps toward your goal now while you have the chance. It could take a while to get there, so don't delay starting any longer.

Ok, for the record I am not a double dipper as my bestie says. We do not celebrate US mother's day for me, but we do celebrate it for my mother-in-law. I'll accept the best wishes and niceties, but May 10th is my day. To celebrate, I took today off, was greeted by 18 long stem roses when I woke up, a pair of lovely earrings, an adorable card from my kids and a hilarious card from my husband. The card from my husband had nothing to do with mothers day, in fact it was a birthday card that he lined out and wrote in "Happy Mother's Day," He also explained, in the card, why he got the card: "I don't get it, so I had to buy it for you to explain it to me." Actually hilarious, you know the sexy disco 70's porn music: Bown-Chick-a-Bown-Wow. Well this card said something like who are the sexiest animals on a farm? Then when you opened it there was the disco porn music singing Brown Chicken, Brown Cow. I know, I have no idea why this is so funny, but it was and my 3 years played it over and over until whisked him away to his grandparents for the day.

How did I spend the rest of my day? I got an intense massage. My girl dug her elbow so far in my ass that I nearly cried bloody murder tears of joy as my hamstring-piriformis first clenched, then about an hour later 2 minutes into the excruciating pain pressure, it released. Sigh of relief. She worked the crap out of my IT bands and I think with some serious stretching all week I might not die running a half marathon I am completely not trained for which I am most certainly under trained. Afterward I milled around my home town buying bread at a local bakery, shopping in a furniture consignment shop, having Chipotle with a co-worker, a little trip to pick up my PowerGels, Gu's and blocks for Sunday's half, Trader Joe's for coconut water, then Target. Now I am home enjoying my DVR'd Oprah and Vampire Diaries. Tonight I get a nice dinner with my family and then it is back to grind, my new super duper ADM job grind. I love it.

Why I Kick A$$: I spent last night helping my niece Poley prepare for her job interview today and she aced it! Yes I am totally taking credit for having such a smart niece. My 19 year old niece now has a full time job, woo hoo! To top it off, it will allow her the flexibility to continue to pursue her Bachelor's degree. Her older sister Keeka also interviewed at a different place today and we think her visit to HR tomorrow will be just as positive as Poley's.
Thankful Three
  1. For days off
  2. For new opportunties
  3. For fresh baked cibatta

Sunday, May 8, 2011

Sunday Summary: What to blog about?

what to blog about?
  • Grandmas amazingly beautiful funeral service and the closure I now feel? Weight totally lifted. Nah, I'll leave this for my Thoughtful Thursday post.
  • Being, for the millionth time in the last two months, "back on track" with runs this past week on Tuesday 2.5, Thursday 4.0 and today 6.0 plus a basketball game in the afternoon? Nah.
  • How tomorrow is my first day in my new job and I'm super nervous? Uh, nope that'll probably give me more anxiety.
  • Oooh, I know, how about I tell you how Saturday was spent catching tadpoles...uh, yeah that's it. Family time catching tadpoles. The End. Hopefully I'll upload a cute picture soon on this subject.
  • Chile Colorado? Yeah, I have been craving it a lot lately. To my surprise, I came home to homemade Chile Colorado. My hubby is a genius in the kitchen.

Well I will forewarn you, I don't celebrate American Mother's Day...don't get me wrong, I'll take ny extra niceness and attention I can get, but it better not be instead of celebrate Mexican Mother's Day which is May 10th. I love that the date doesn't change, it's easier to keep track. So today we honor my mother-in-law the only way we know how, going to her house and letting her cook us a kick A$$ breakfast. As I reflect on some of the words my aunts and uncles said about my grandmother as their "mother-in-law" I am reminded, mothers' in law are just that, mother's. There have been good times and bad with my mother-in-law. She is not the meddling type, she doesn't call her son every day, she doesn't tell me how to parent and is really cool to hang out with and talk to about book club books. So where to all the tiffs  come it? Uh, just the basics, figuring out married life relationship dynamics, becoming a parent dynamics and stuff like that, the usual. I know, I am lucky. Not throw any one under the bus, but I am pretty sure I am in the upper echelon of people with not only "tolerable" inlaws, but I live one mile from mine and am perfectly sane. My mother in law can give Martha Stewart a run for her money in the kitchen, with home decor and she has served no prison time.
Why I Kick A$$: I got to do my 6 mile run today, have a fantastic brunch with my in laws, played the worst game of basketball ever which is WAY better than no basketball at all, then had the most fun going to dinner just me and my momma.
Thankful Three:
  1. Wind Chimes
  2. DVR: Oprah, 30 Rock, Parks and Rec, The Office, Oprah, Vampire Diaries
  3. Runner's World Magazine-catching up on the B.Q or Die article

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Tuesday Tidbit: Ay Dios Mio

Ay Dios Mio
Ay Dios Mio, the Spanish equivalent to Oh My G-d. Text talk folks might say OMG, my niece facebooks ADM all the time. Last Wednesday I got some amazing news, yes I was accepted in the Nike Women's Marathon, San Francisco, but later that afternoon, my day got even better...I got ice cream cake for my sisters birthday! Oh yeah and one more thing, 
I am so excited, I have wanted this for a long time and was told over and over that good things come to those who wait...well with the caveat that you are busting your A$$ while you are waiting. Well for the last 4 years, I busted my A$$, took time to have my children and rotated through some really great developmental assignments. In 4 years I have been able to do everything I have wanted to do in my family life without having to sacrifice family time for work time. Now the pay off. My promotion is in my home office so my commute of 3 miles remains the same and now I'll have an office with a door and a nice little pay bump as well. I start next week. So are you ready for my title?
Assistant District Manager 
Ay Dios Mio! LOL I am an ADM! Woo Hoo! My husband likes to say, I am the assistant to the regional manager. I am so not Dwight Schrute, even though I really do love beets.
Why I Kick A$$: Because despite my impatience some times, I get what I want out of life exactly the way I want it. No I am not lucky, even thought I feel tremendously lucky and blessed every day. The key factor is that I am constantly busting my ass and I guess I just needed to say this out loud so that I can actually start believing that I have EARNED and DESERVE the wonderful people and things in my life, because I do.
Thankful Three:
  1. This morning's run, I really needed some pavement therapy
  2. For a good nights sleep
  3. For feeling motivated, while I only did 3.5 with my partner, I really felt like I could've finished 5 without blinking. Maybe 5 will be the new 3?