Sunday, September 29, 2013

Running Ramblings

My brother in law told me he wanted to hear more about my marathon training so you can blame him for this rambling post.

First off, if you're wondering how I can train for a marathon and not lose any weight here is your answer:

This is everything I've eaten today, up until 5 pm. I hate Gu, and can't seem to make it to a store that sells other running energy food so I just eat handfuls of chocolate chips when I run. Seems to be working well thus far. Also, the chicken and noodles meal isn't mine, I ate mine before I remembered to take a picture. And the goat cheese is to die for.

My training consists of running 4 days a week with the cross country kids. I was previously running with the fast kids and then looping back to check on the slow kids. Well, now that the faster kids are faster and the slower kids are....well, the same, I run with the middle of the pack kids and then usually just wait for the slower kids to get back. Runs average about 2-3 miles. Then on the weekends I do one long run. Today's long run was 16 miles. It went my more smoothly than my 15 mile run last weekend, during which I cried (3 tears) and tried multiple times to call Charlie to pick me up, to no avail.

The first step is to map out my run. I use daily mile. The NH Marathon/Half Marathon are next weekend and the course goes around the lake so I figured that would be a run loop. I did it the opposite way that the marathon will go, and also did 10 miles less than the marathon.

Check out that elevation profile. Barf. I drove to the lake and it was super foggy. This made me worry a little bit about being hit by a car, but I was wearing bright colored clothes so I set off. I also forgot my watch at home so I used my phone and then just tried to guess where I was in terms of distance. This picture was taken at my car. 

 By mile 3-4ish it had cleared up quite a bit. This is Wellington State Park.

The cove was clear but the rest of the lake was quite foggy. Kind of spooky.

This area is the one reason I was scared to do this run, and have lived here for 3+ years and haven't done it. The Ledges. There is a huge rock ledge on the left, a very little shoulder, the road, and then the lake. Whenever we drive by here I always tell Charlie that the lake is 100 or more feet deep right off of the ledge and he calls me Nevan (my dad's name) because my dad tells the same stories over and over and I guess I do too.

 By mile 8 I had to walk up that killer hill so I called my Dad. It makes me look less lame (at least I think so) when I am walking up a hill and talking on the phone than just walking up the hill. I feel like it makes me look super important. "Look at the girl, she's our running and she's talking on the phone, she must be really popular or has a super important job." That's probably not even close to what people really think though.

Then I ran some more until another big hill, which I walked up. Trail running has ruined me. I walk up every hill because I'd rather walk up it and be ready to run at the top than run up it and want to die. Plus all trail runners walk up hills. The only down side is I was so worried I'd see someone I know, or a kid on the team, when I was walking. Also, I could have called someone else but I had no service in this little valley!

At the top of the hill I almost stepped on a dead possum and I freaked out. Are you ever in the middle of freaking out and one part of you says "Geeze get it together!" and the other part says "I'm trying but eww you just stepped on a dead animal." Let's just say I started running again after that. Then I saw this cute sign for a wedding that was either yesterday or last week. How cute. Looks like something I would have done. It inspired me even though it was not meant for me, and I still had about 6 miles left to go.

This last part of the run was pretty hot and I had no idea how much farther I had to go because I didn't have my watch so I used my phone. 3/4 of the way done, that wasn't too bad.

The views were fantastic once the fog cleared and I was so excited to get back to my car to take a before and after picture of the view. Then I got back and this man in a speedo was sunning himself right next to my car. The entire beach was empty and he picked right there to tan, what are the chances? He also had the sketchiest mustache. I took this picture and sped away. It was too funny for me to even be upset.
Why are his legs spread so far apart!?
 Then I got home and Charlie was cutting down limbs from a tree in our yard. He kept saying "The view is great!" and couldn't understand why I was a little upset about his lack of safety precautions. Everyone cuts down limbs in a tree with running shoes on when no one is home apparently. In his defense the view is wonderful now, and he didn't fall or get trapped under a branch.

FYI the ladder below the limb is a 12 foot ladder. GAH! 
 Then I washed my car and planted bulbs. I think I'll go to bed at 7:30.


Wednesday, September 25, 2013

House Stuff: Rearranging

It took me four months but I finally convinced Charlie to switch our bedroom around. We had out bed under the skylight. I am not opposed to that per say, when I had my glasses on at night I could see the stars, but without glasses I saw nothing. It also wasn't bad this summer because it wasn't cold. When we lived in Newmarket our bed was also under the skylight and in the winter I had to wear a hat to bed sometimes because it was so cold. Anyways, I finally made Charlie put his head in my hands to show him what view he would have from bed if we moved our bed, and after seeing the mountains in the distance he agreed. I have no idea how he did not notice that you could see the mountains for the last 4 months, and I also have no idea how he did not hear me talk about moving our bed for 4 months, but oh well. It's finally done! Now I just need to find some artwork to make the wall less boring. 

Here is our view! The only downside is you have to sleep in to get the view; and I never get to sleep in. Sleeping in to me is staying in bed past 6am, oh the joys of having dogs.

 I also convinced Charlie to let me put my dresser where his was. Now I have a whole little nook to myself. I tested out the quilt rack with several ratty blankets and towels and Blaze has no interest in them so they are safe. In case you were worried.

I love it!
And here is my "reading area" with my Federal Stand that I won  bought at an auction, and an orchid I bought 4 weeks ago and have yet to kill, go me! 

I tell Charlie all the time now how much I love our bedroom. Any ideas on artwork for a bedroom?


Tuesday, September 24, 2013

Ruby Top

Rae, of Made By Rae, has done it again! She's made a great pattern that makes me drop everything and sew. The Ruby Top/Dress.  I've been waiting half the summer for this pattern to come out. I even had the fabric waiting. The top is lace and the bottom is Lisette, from Joann's. I think the fabric is meant to be for kids clothing, but I don't care because it is soft and was in the discount area. 

It was a super easy pattern to follow. It's even lined, using the extra videos Rae posted here
Too bad it's a tank top and it's officially Fall here. I think I will make a jumper-esque one to wear this Fall/Winter since the pattern can also be used to make a dress. This is how I wore it to work today. Please don't judge my green socks, there are the only socks I had in my drawer, the rest are packed away with my other winter clothes, guess I should get those out soon. Also, I really wanted a picture with this hydrangea bush that has finally bloomed! I thought it was dead all summer. 

Now Rae just announced she is releasing more patterns! I can't wait.


Friday, September 20, 2013

Life Lesson, from Lauren, at 11PM

Today we bought a wheel barrow at Home Depot. The salesman untied it from all the others and brought it to me inside to pay for. It had a scratch on it, so to be funny I said "It has a scratch, can I get a discount?" Thinking - this will be hilarious, we're going to use this wheel barrow to haul rocks and dirt around and it will be all scratched up by 10am tomorrow. The man said "Sure, how's a $5 discount sound?" He didn't even crack a smile. I would have been ticked that he didn't laugh at my joke if he didn't give me the discount. Moral of the story is, always ask for a discount on faulty goods, even if it's just as a joke.

Once I bought a donut at a grocery store and ate half of it before checking out, then I asked the cashier for a discount because someone had eaten half of my donut. She seriously contemplated my request but then the friend I was with laughed too much for her to honor my request. Moral of that story is, never take a friend who thinks you are funny to the store with you. And, to bid you goodnight, a picture of Blaze and me. Don't judge us, we've had a rough week.


Tuesday, September 17, 2013

Fall Wreath

In an attempt to like fall more I've decided to try to decorate for fall. Step one was to buy a wreath. All the wreaths at the store were $25-$30 and hideous. I say hideous but really they just didn't have any purple in them and were only yellow, orange and red. Some also had gourds glued to them which I though was dumb. Instead of buying an expensive ugly wreath I decided to make one. With only $17 worth of supplies!  The wreath is made from a wreath form, a 10 yard pack of 5 inch wide burlap, fake sunflowers and fake purple flowers and some little fake berry-ish beads. I wove the burlap through the wreath form, then hot glued the flowers, beads and greens where I thought it looked nice. I think it looks fabulous with our freshly painted front door and new door knobs.

We also put up new lights. It only took us 3 hours, but neither of us got electrocuted! I love the front of the house now. Next spring we're hoping to replace the front steps and put some plants in the front. 

Back soon with some sewing I promise. 


Monday, September 16, 2013


It's been way too long since I posted. Sorry.  Since I haven't sewed anything, and because my brother in law just commented that he likes reading what I have to say, and since I just ran a race, here is a race recap. 

First, two things to do the day before a race are; ride a motorcycle with your brother. He's always too distracted making inappropriate jokes to smile at the camera. 

And second, lay on the couch in your PJ's watching Netflix shows on a huge TV and cuddle with your dogs that hate to cuddle. (We've been watching Derek. It's very good but we're only 2 episodes in and I already cry pretty much the entire 23 minutes. {I dare you to watch that trailer and not feel your heart strings being tugged.})

So, to the race. We woke up at 4:30, not because we needed to leave but because the dogs were ready to wrestle outside and swim in the frog pond. We stayed at my dad's so the drive only took us about an hour to get to Pisgah State Park in Winchester NH. We got there and got our bibs. I made a comment to Charlie about our bib numbers being really off, his was 28 and mine was 40; usually we are in sequential order because we register together. He and the registration lady ignored me. Turns out right before the race started Charlie's dad pointed out that the name on his bib was not his. They gave him the wrong one and he was a 60 year old man. He quickly got his bib back.

 Two highly traumatizing things happened to me before the race started.  The first was that I wanted to go inside the school to use the bathroom but there was a huge spider on the floor of the entrance (it's body was the size of a quarter, I'm not even joking). Obviously I stood in terror about 8 feet away from it. Then a man walked by, I said "watch out" and he stepped right on the spider and crushed it. Gag. Then almost immediately after turning around to avoid the carnage I saw my running arch nemeses. I must preface this rant by saying that I am not a very hateful person, I don't really hate anyone, EXCEPT THIS GUY. He ran the same race as me 4 year ago and farted on me and I've hated him ever since. He tends to run a lot of the same races that Charlie and I run. He likes trail racing and lives around us. He also runs about the same pace as me (molasses on a cold day). I've run about six or seven races that he's done since the farting incident and I always want to beat him. I can't figure out what it is because I'm really not competitive at all. I seriously would not care if I came in second to last as long as he was behind me. Anyways as soon as I saw him I got real pumped to beat him. I even put on my grouchy strong face.

The race started, the weather was beautiful, the trail was wet from the rain but it wasn't too bad. I was right around my enemy for about 2 miles, I'd pass him on the uphills and he'd blow past me on the downhills. Then around mile 2 he was ahead of me and I couldn't see him. I figured that as long as he was that far ahead of me he couldn't fart on me so I let it be and ran at a good pace (for me).

 I had to bush whack for part of the race (.02 miles) because there was a huge swarm of bees. Charlie was way ahead of me but got stung by three bees. There were some pretty sweet views. The best part about trail racing is that there are snacks at the water stations. M&M's every few miles, yes please! The second best part is the great views. You could see Mt. Monadnock.

This is what some of the trail looked like. Pretty easy to follow. 

 At 2 hours and 40 minutes my GPS watch said I had two miles to go, and I really wanted to finish in under 3 hours so I started going a bit faster, it helped that it was mostly downhill. Right at the turn from the trail to the main road that takes you to the finish line I saw my enemy. I had pretty much decided that I wasn't going to beat him and was just happy not to be farted on, but as soon as I saw him I was filled with rage again and really turned on the speed. Here is the part where I feel bad; I passed him and he was very nice about it, he said "looking good, keep up the good work". Then I felt bad that I was trying to beat him, but maybe that was just his ploy? I didn't want him to catch up to me though so I kept hustling. I finished in about 2 hours and 54 minutes, and beat my enemy. The funny thing is I don't hate him once I've beaten him. I was even nice and clapped for him as he finished. I wonder if there are any studies on competitive hatred. It really makes me feel like a bad person but I can't help it. Here we are at the finish line. I ate a hotdog and two cookies and they were all so good I don't even care that I used to be a vegetarian and said I would never eat hotdog again.

My feet hurt pretty bad afterwards and my shoulders are always sore after a long race but I feel pretty good. The kids at practice today couldn't believe that anyone could run 14 miles. I didn't even tell them I am doing a marathon because they would think I was extra crazy and would really not listen to anything I said.

Now I just need to stay motivated for November 2nd.


Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Things I Love: September

It's no secret that September is not my favorite month. It's potentially my least favorite. School has started again, my fun summer days are over. In order to cure my blues about the Fall coming, here are some things I am really digging these days.

Orange Is The New Black- It's a Netflix series about a woman who goes to prison for smuggling drug money. It's funny, interesting, and certainly keeps me from even thinking about committing any crimes. (We all know I don't do well with communal bathrooms.) Also, who doesn't love Laura Prepon? (Beware, this is not a kid friendly show).

Project Runway Season 12- I've been gushing about this on facebook but there is a Deaf contestant named Justin on the show. I love him, he's pretty much the best thing ever. The rest of the designers are okay too I guess, except Ken, he's a foo and I always hope he gets kicked off.

Forever Kai- My friend just started an Etsy shop and is selling reusable tote bags. They are so cute I want one with every animal I love on it.

Apple Cider- need I say more? Apple butter is also a weakness of mine that I don't indulge until September to ease the sting of fall.

Pumpkin muffins- I'm drooling already. My friend gave me the best recipe for pumpkin muffins and maybe if you're lucky I will ask her if I can share it with you.

The leaves falling off of the trees- then we'll have a better view of the mountains. It also makes for pretty pictures.

Christmas- it's only three-ish months away. Get excited.


Tuesday, September 3, 2013

Survey Says!

Be sure to say the blog title in a Louie Anderson voice. Results are in, and you all think that running a trail marathon is crazier than coaching middle school cross country.

 We are two weeks into the season and two months into training and I am doubting my sanity in all walks of life. I am pooped from my long run this week. I need to find a better system for carrying water when I run because I thought I was going to die of thirst on my run today. My fuel belt broke last year and I haven't replaced it. I have a camel pack but it chafes my arms and makes me want to pitch it into the woods by mile 8. So far I have only yelled "this is cross country running not cross country walking" 100 times at practice. I can't understand why kids sign up for this sport if they don't like to run. They also ask me at the beginning of every practice "how far are we running today?" and I never tell them, because they would complain for 30 minutes about it. Plus no matter how far I tell them they are running they still set out like a stampede of wildebeest then crawl to the end because they went out too fast. Oh how I love 12 year olds. (Don't watch that whole video, unless you want to ruin your whole day! You've been warned).

Also, someone is continuing to mess with me. That or there really are two people named Nevan who read this blog, but I highly doubt that. My dad swears he only answered once. 

Maybe someday soon I will get around to sewing something. Until then I hope you enjoy these rambling posts.


Monday, September 2, 2013

Home Improvements Updates

It's been a while since I last posted. I figured you're just dying to know what we've been doing. Mostly, we've been starting school again, thus doing a lot less around the house. The laundry is suffering. We both had Friday off from work though so we got some painting finished. Saturday we went to a fantastic wedding and Sunday we did some projects. Today was rainy so we ran and went swimming and did a whole lot of relaxing. Here's the run down:

The front door was a very cobalt blue, which matched the shutters but did not really appeal to me.

We painted it a grayish color. I am not sure if I really love it, Charlie says he does though. One thing this made me realize is that we need a new door knob. We also have plans to put new lights outside and do something different with the front steps. I'd also like a screen door instead of the storm door, that's being debated though. Why must one simple project lead you to want to change four other things? A new color is a good start I suppose.

While I was at work last week Charlie stacked all of the random logs that were on the property. He's ohh so proud. 

Yesterday after we got home from the wedding Charlie built a fire pit. We also dug up a bunch of flag stone (I think that's what they're called) and made a path to the fire pit and to the compost bin. All of the stones were found on the property so these projects were F-R-E-E.

While Charlie was doing making the fire ring I dug up all the weeds in our "herb" garden. It was all chives and weeds. Then I transplanted a sage plant and my basil plant. Hopefully even thought the plants are now 10 steps from the door, not 2, I'll still remember to water them. Fresh basil on pasta and pizza has been very nice all summer long.

Speaking of growing, the tomato plants are doing very well. I eat most of what grows before I even come inside the house.

Last, but certainly not least; the shed! Here is the before, it was run down, paint was chipping, and mice were living inside. 


Charlie cleaned the roof, cut down some of the trees close to the shed, cleaned out the mice droppings, and fixed the broken window. We painted the siding, trim and doors. We still need to get a replacement board for under the door. I'd also like to get a window box full of fake flowers for some pizzaz, but Charlie says that's ridiculous for a shed. 

That's all for now. I am pooped just typing about all this work. We still have a little bit more painting to do, I'm hoping to be done soon. I am sure it will just lead to more painting though. Oy!

Hope you had a great long weekend!


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