Thursday, December 31, 2009
My favorite verse of this traditional song celebrating love and friendships from the past is the last one:
So here's a hand my trusted friend
And give a hand of thine.
We'll take a cup of kindness yet,
For auld lang syne.
Bring on the kindnesss in 2010!! Happy New Year!
Friday, December 25, 2009
Unfortunately Santa did NOT drop off any running snow shoes. I might have to take advantage of the after xmas sales at REI and pick up a pair. I can only image how TOUGH jogging even a mile or two in snow must be...looking for new and interesting challenges and twists to my fitness training.
Saturday, December 12, 2009
Monday: 8 miles
Tuesday: 8 miles
Wednesday: 5 miles
Thursday; 9 miles (hills)
Saturday: 10 miles
Sunday: To be determined - I have a couple holiday parties tonight!! Ho, ho, ho.
Sunday, December 6, 2009
Thursday, November 26, 2009
"Friendship is the guise of love,
And love is friendship
Dressed up for a night out.
That we are here together, here at this moment,
Alive, one with another,
Is the most delicious treat;
I, for one, ask for no more,
I, for one, am replete."
(Corduroy Mansions, Alexander McCall Smith)
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I never ran in high school or college. In fact, I didn't start until I was 30 years old after having two children. It has been so much fun watching and supporting the girls in Medfield, and I know that after Kallie graduates I'll still be coming back for more xcountry spectactor fun.
I also see the same positive team bonding that I've experienced with DFMC. We all have our individual goals, but we are also excited when a team mate races a new PR. I know these girls will continue running, perhaps not at a competitive collegiate level, but they've got the heart, soul and guts to be future DFMCers!!!
Good Luck at States, Medfield!
Monday, November 16, 2009
Remember when the biggest decision of your life was WHERE I am going to college??? (Or perhaps, where will I be ACCEPTED to college???). Thank goodness my oldest daughter has the relief of her cross-country workouts to make it all bearable!
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
The little girls ADORE their older race buddies! And the volunteers seem to really enjoy the experience too. Perhaps the volunteers recongize a younger version of themselves.
So in this post I'm taking the opportunity to thank Abby and Brenda, DFMC marathon athletes, who helped at the Chelsea Trick or Trot race, and the 9 Medfield xcountry girls who spurred on my team of girls in Medfield. You're the best!!
Wednesday, November 4, 2009
Me: "Not exactly. Try adding a couple more digits." (Actual overall place: 4128)
The New York City Marathon is an AMAZING event! However, the one thing I DO NOT enjoy about this race is the hours spent on Staten Island before the race starts. I was assigned to take a 5:30 bus from the New York Public Library only to arrive on Staten Island and sit around for 3 hours (in relatively cold, damp conditions) before lining up in my coral. While waiting in my coral I had the pleasure of meeting two young women, both strong half marathon runners, who were running their first marathon. They were shooting for a time between 3:30-3:45. I quickly identified these gals as great race buddies as I also was nervous about running too fast too early in the game only to crash and burn at the tail end. Starting out at an 8 minute pace was perfect!
As it turned out, even if we wanted to run much faster we wouldn't have had the opportunity as this race is REALLY crowded. Unfortunately I lost my new friends (one at mile 10 and the other one at mile 20) but these gals from New Mexico and Texas were fabulous running mates.
26 miles is 26 miles, regardless of how fast or how slow you run. The slightly sub 8 minute pace was comfortable, but at mile 20 I was ready to be DONE with all of it. In most of my marathon experiences, this is the point when things start to tighten up and it begins to hurt. I pushed through the next 3 miles, and at the 23 mile point I had a burst of energy to just finish. To my surprise I ran mile 24 at a 7:20 pace and my final mile at a 7:10 pace. My first negative splits EVER in a marathon, or any race for that matter.
Final time: 3:25:25.
What's next? Boston 2010.
Wednesday, October 28, 2009
"Don't go around saying the world owes you a living. The world owes you nothing. It was here first."
"Good friends, good books and a sleepy conscience: this is the ideal life."
"All right, then, I'll go to hell."
So I've picked up a couple of other unusual books as MT reflects upon life, love and religion for my trip down to NYC including The Bible According to Mark Twain: Irreverent Writing on Eden, Heaven, and the Flood by America's Master Satirist. I look forward to mulling over irreverent thoughts through the 5 boroughs in New York on Sunday. Looking forward to the company, Mark! Anyone else want to share a favorite Twain quote? Gotta love Mark Twain! This week I was laminating a project for one of the 8th grade teachers at the Middle School, and I came upon some great quotes from MT. Then I started to think back on how much I ADORED his Diaries of Adam and Eve, a unique volume that demonstrates a very loving, sensitive side of Twain (along with the wit and humor that we expect).
Gotta love Mark Twain! This week I was laminating a project for one of the 8th grade teachers at the Middle School, and I came upon some great quotes from MT. Then I started to think back on how much I ADORED his Diaries of Adam and Eve, a unique volume that demonstrates a very loving, sensitive side of Twain (along with the wit and humor that we expect).
Saturday, October 24, 2009
Monday, October 12, 2009
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Easy runs of 5-8 miles and long early morning strolls along the rocky shores of the cape cod bay.
No long runs, no hard runs, and one race (Falmouth). This is NOT great preparation for the NYC marathon that I will be running (and probably walking too!) on Nov. 1. I guess I was having too much fun at my beloved summer home and community. Besides, the older I get the more I really, really hate the heat.
Despite my slow time at Falmouth, I had a fabulous time as not only did my oldest daughter (a cross-country/track girl) join me, but my husband Brian also ran his very first road race!! The guy has become an exercise machine over the last 6 months, losing 25 pounds and actually enjoying his running workouts. Go figure!
While I was somewhat pleased that I could still run Falmouth under a 7 minute/mile pace, I suffered from the "throw up" stomach after pushing up the last hill...probably 1/4 mile from the finish. I took a short walking break at that point, clenching my stomach while gagging and desperately hoping that I wouldn't puke on the feet of runners or spectators. Not a pretty sight or pretty finish to the race, but I was able to pick up the pace for the last few hundreds BEFORE I saw Barry the Liver Guy at the finish who would have completely yelled at me to see me walking. Whew!
Very happy to finish that race!
Thursday, July 2, 2009
I'd spend the day with Mr. Darcy, from Jane Austen's "Pride and Prejudice," naturally. Is there any other man who broods so masterfully in literature and who could benefit more from a spirited, lighthearted game of beach Frisbee? And of course, since we'd be on a beach together, I'd greatly enjoy seeing what's beneath that proper waistcoat of his.
I'd like to collect sea glass and observe the sealife with Mr. Rodchester from Jane Eyre and talk more about his issues with women. I was considering Atticus Finch. He certainly would be a gentleman, but it would probably be more fun to frolic in the waves with passionate Mr. R!
My second choice would be sipping pina coladas while watching the sunset over the ocean with Frederick Wentworth from Austen's Persuasion and discussing the art of the hand written letter. Gotta LOVE his letter to Anne Elliot -
"You pierce my soul. I am half agony, half hope. Tell me not that I am too late, that such precious feelings are gone for ever. I offer myself to you again with a heart even more your own than when you almost broke it, eight and a half years ago. Dare not say that a man forgets sooner than woman, that his love has an earlier death. I have loved none but you. Unjust I may have been, weak and resentful I have been, but never inconstant."
So who would YOU choose as a beach buddy?
Monday, June 1, 2009
The Sweetness of the Bottom of the Pie by Alan Bradley
Mystery is not one of my favorite literary genres. Perhaps it was the word "pie" that caught my eye in the Wellesley Booksmith as the Guernsey Literary and Potato Peel Pie Society (now in paperback) is high on my list of recent favorites. I typically don't eat pie, but I seem to enjoy reading about pie! The protagonist is 11 year-old Flavia De Luce - Harriet the Spy/Sammy Keyes meets Sherlock Holmes/Miss Marple. The characters in the novel are quirky and delightful. When Flavia discovers a dead body in the family's cucumber patch she wishes she could say she was afraid. "But I wasn't . Quite the contrary. This was by far the most interesting thing that had ever happened to me in my entire life."
Death in the cucumber patch...gotta love it! So very British.
And then there is Julie Hahnke's fantasy novel for intermediate readers, The Grey Ghost.
When Black Duncan Campbell starts murdering his neighbors in 1526 Scotland, eleven-year-old Angus suddenly finds himself the sole survivor of Clan Macnab. Aided by a goshawk and a pine marten, and urged forward by a mysterious luna moth, Angus must uncover his clan’s heritage, reveal ancient secrets, and try to end the Campbell’s bloody rampage.
Julie also hosts AMAZING author/bookstore visits and presentations as she brings along her bagpipes (she is a superb piper) plus lots of historical /scientific information and slides about the animals and countries she writes about in her novels.
Great Stuff...So what would be the Scottish verion of "Erin Go Bragh"? Mel Gibson might know.
Friday, May 22, 2009
After arriving in London at 5:15 A.M. on Thursday morning and a 3 1/2 hour train ride up to the Lake District, followed by an absolutely terrifying taxi ride from the train station, I finally arrived at Laurel Cottage in the town of Bowness where I would begin and end my 3 day walking holiday.
And thus began Day 1 of my adventure: A 10.5 mile walk from Windermere to Grasmere
After about 30 minutes I arrived at Orrest Head for some fabulous views down on to the lake and village of Windermere. It was a rainy day, but even the lowsy weather couldn't cloud over the beauty of this piece of the world.
I was incredibly fortunate at this point in the trip to meet up with an older English couple walking to Ambleside, the half-way point of Day 1. After leaving Orrest Head there was no clear path whatsoever - just rolling hills, stone walls and lots and lots of sheep. They helped me navigate my way over stiles through these farms , and after 4 miles with these nice, helpful people I was becoming a bit more confident in my ability to understand the maps and directions.
Below is a view of Rylant Waters which leads to Grasmere, the home of Williams Wordsworth and where I was spending the night.
It was great fun to meet some locals for an evening of Questions (their version of trivia night) at the pub in the Wordsworth Inn.
My view from the guest house in Grasmere was amazing!
Day 2: Grasmere to Coniston, 12.5 miles. After breakfast (same thing - eggs, toast, tomatoes and mushrooms), it was time to head up into the hills again.
And along sides of mountains:
At some point looking across the way I knew I was going to have to go up and over the mountain range to get to Coniston. Hmmmm...
On the way back down, however, it started to get a little dicey. I took a picture of this charming stream (or "beck" as it is called in Cumbria). Shortly after snapping this photo, the beck lost it's charm and turned into what felt like a gorge to me as the path became very steep and rocky.
As it turned out there WAS a road along side the wall in the distance and I was SO relieved when I saw a car drive by along that wall. Yes, civilization!! It literally was all down hill after that scarey moment.
I was really pooped after Day 2 and was thrilled to reach my guest house in Coniston.
Day 3: Coniston to Sawrey - 9.5 miles
The morning walk out of Coniston was quite spiritual as church bells were ringing as I hiked up the hills. I couldn't help but start to sing (to myself as not to scare the sheep! ) a favorite hymn that brings me back to my high school days at Laurel School...."And did those feet in ancient time, walk upon England's mountains green." And believe me...there were lots of holy lambs too
The home of Beatrix Potter who left over 4.000 acres of land she purchased to the National Trust in order to preserve the beauty of the Lake District country sid
After visiting Beatrix's house and a quick lunch in Near Sawrey, I only had a few more miles of my walking adventure as I headed over to Lake Windermere where I would be taking a ferry back to Bowness, the beginning and end of my walking holiday.