You know what they say about your peers rubbing off on you? I guess it’s true, because after hearing about/watching all the training Linda and my husband do, I’ve actually started training for my own running event. I’ve signed up to run my first 5k, the Seattle Athleta Iron Girl in Seattle! So I’m going to earn one of these sparklers:
I credit my friend Beverly with actually making me sign up for the run. (Thank you, Beverly!) She decided she wanted to train to do it, and I decided a few hours around the neighborhood with her a week would be a delightful thing to add to my schedule. Last session, we alternated walking and running around the track for just about 5k (with the walk to and from the track, we covered more than 5k total). It was so exciting to know we can run already halfway! Now we have the rest of the summer to make sure we can run the whole thing.
What are you training for? Any tips for the newbie?
As we wrap up our time at our current home and pack boxes for the big move, I feel this week has been coming for months . . . and now it’s just time to push the baby out! It may hurt us all; for a move, usually I am much more packed up by now. It’s just time to dig down deep and go!
The best part of this move is who bought our house and how they found us. It was on Mother’s Day. We decided NOT to have an open house because, well, it was Mother’s Day, and we figured we could list the house on Saturday and let it hold a week. Then a sweet family knocked on our door anyway and asked if there was going to be an open house. We said, “Next Sunday.”
The man at the door explained that he was a father looking for a home for his daughter. . . and would it be OK if they looked? They took a quick tour. The electricity was gently flowing between us as we exchanged sentences. The daughter volunteered at Children’s Hospital for 6 years. Her mom was a kindergarten teacher. By the end of the conversation, the daughter asked if she could bring her husband back when he got home from work.
Short story: enter agents, paper work, inspectors, and a small list of things to fix including carbon monoxide alarms now alongside the smoke detectors. Last Friday we had a final walk-through together, and our new owners asked the agent about the SOLD sign that they want a picture in front of. She said she would bring it and put it up. Which she did– in the dark.
The plan was for a photo on Sunday morning with the new owners in front of their new house with the sign and the old owners. Less than 14 hours after the realtor put it up, the sold sign was gone. What?!? We are doing what we can to get the sign back. This is their first house. But, whether we can get the sign back or not. . .
On Friday at 5:00 this house will be the cute young couple’s house. I hope they enjoy it as much or more than we have. They are perfect for this house.
I will let you know more about where we moved to next Tuesday. . . Stay tuned.
Posted by Tegan on Jun 21, 2012 in community
, Tegan's posts
Today is a day of gratitude. I want to share with you two wonderful gifts I received.
This came from a fifth grade book club at a local elementary school. I presented titles to the group to help them decide what they were going to read and discuss next. After, they dropped this amazing reading journal off at the bookstore for me. It came with a sweet thank you note from the whole group, and then inside are individual thank yous from the teachers and the students, plus lots of blank pages so I can write notes about what I read. Wow! Whenever I’m feeling overwhelmed from my job, I just look at this for a few minutes, and I’m convinced I have the best job on the planet.
Someone drew a stack of books based on the pile I brought to show them. They made a little book-loving Tegan (complete with a purple dress and sensible shoes– very me!), and drew monsters because the book they agreed on for their next decision is the thought-provoking, exciting, and spooky Demonkeeper by Royce Buckingham. Isn’t that so creative?
These are amazing handcrafted, personalized notecards and envelopes that the incredible author and illustrator Brie Spangler gave me as a thank you for giving her feedback on a project. They are so cheerful and lovely! I have taken photos of them all so I can actually use them to pass the gratitude on, but I’m so in love with them, I’m still having a hard time not hoarding them.
These beautiful handmade gifts prove the delight of creativity and gratitude beautifully expressed. It makes me want to make something for someone I appreciate… but what should I make? Any ideas?
Posted by Linda on Jun 18, 2012 in family
, life at home
, Linda's posts
Like clockwork every year our wedding anniversary rolls around. This year we have not been very aware of it because of all the other things going on in our life; we planned to celebrate of our marriage late with an adventous ride home on a rented Harley after I complete the Sharfest Swim in July.
This morning, a text from a sweet person in our life came in…”Today is your anniversary, right?” I said, to myself, “Right!” and smiled. Minutes later the phone rang. It was Colin. We said, “Happy Anniversary” in unison! We acknowledged that this one got away from us…and we laughed. I’m going to work tonight, so we have no special plans in place for today.
We’ve been so knee deep in planning our move and celebrating graduates that the date got by us. This has never happened before. So, after 35 years we have done it…taken that special date for granted.
This year, Colin and I have pulled together more than ever through all sorts of challenges and changes. We’re building a satisfying life for Heather in her post-high school years. We’re days away from a big move. Colin’s work life has shifted some. We are more aware that we are in a rapidly changing world in our aging bodies. Through it all, we celebrate our relationship often. We enjoy being together and leaning on each other to problem-solve the big and the small. I find myself grateful for Colin daily.
When I met Colin in college, he was the kindest person I had ever met. That is still true. He is also a whole host of other things, but kindness is at the top of the list.
Happy Anniversary, Kind One! I can’t wait to ride that Harley back from San Francisco to focus on 35 years of togetherness and CELEBRATE! You are a big fat gift from God to me. I love you. (Still surprised we both missed the date!)
Over the last few weeks, friends and family have done amazing things to help keep my mother’s memory alive. Saturday June 16th, 2012 would have been Ariel Elizabeth Scott Willever’s 66th birthday, but because of a brain tumor, she only lived to be 52. We all still miss her so much.
Recently, my brother-in-law’s sister, Jennifer, and her daughter, Arin, participated in an American Cancer Society Relay for Life, honoring my mother. My mother died before my sister married Jennifer’s brother, and she died before Arin was even born, but she considered Brian and his family already a part of of our family, even if the wedding ceremony hadn’t happened yet. My mom was so excited when my sister showed her ultrasound pictures of Jennifer’s first daughter, Maxine. Maxine’s birth was something hopeful to anticipate when cancer made everything hard. 14 years later, Jennifer and Arin walked to celebrate my mom’s life. Here’s a picture of the luminaria they dedicated to her.
My mother’s cousin Betsy signed up to participate in Swim Across America again this year, and she’s swimming to honor a growing group of angels, including my mom and my aunt, Missy. Betsy started a team of swimmers to fundraise for cancer research, and my childhood friend Cathy (who had never met Betsy in person) signed up to swim on Betsy’s team! They call themselves the Estro-Jets. Now I hear that my aunt Toni, my mom’s sister-in-law, might join them. All these loving, incredible women coming together? I absolutely love it! I think my mom would be so proud of them all and so grateful that they cite her as their inspiration for doing amazing things. I hope they laugh together until they almost pee the pool; my mom would have gotten a big kick out of that.
Thank you to all the people who share memories of my mom, who listen to my stories about her, and who help me keep my memories of her alive. You help me grieve, and you help me celebrate my mother on her birthday and every day.
Happy birthday, Mommy! I’ll always love you. I’ll have some cake for you, appreciate a dogwood tree, laugh until it hurts, be silly, walk by the water, and try to do something nice for someone on your birthday. And I’ll try to live every day so you would be proud of me. I think you’d like that.
Meet Rick. Everyone say, “Hi Rick!”
Rick is my Open Water training buddy for the Alcatraz Sharkfest Swim on July 28th. I met him through my last year’s training buddy, Shari, who moved out of state. It was thoughtful of her to replace herself, since excitement/misery loves company.
I met Rick a few months ago at a restaurant and we chatted about the race we were both signed up for, Alcatraz Sharkfest 2012. He admitted that he was not going to like the acclimatization process (getting our bodies used to the cold water).This is his first year doing this race. I recommended starting about two and a half months before the race with just 5 minutes, then adding 5 minutes weekly. I wasn’t sure if we were going to try to get to the water together or just check in via email. A few weeks later an email came from Rick: “Anytime you go to the water, I’m there.” I whispered to myself, “Awesome!”
May 10th was our first time in open water. The first few times were at Lake Washington where the water was cold but manageable. Then just the other day we switched to the Sound. WOW! It is so much colder! The first 7 minutes is just well…suffering or torture, take your pick. Think Ice Cream head-ache all over your body, making it hard to catch your breath for 7 minutes until you go numb. The first time we were both loudly complaining. Just yesterday Rick went silent on me and I was complaining by myself. So after a few good complaints I went quiet too. We pushed through until the first buoy; after a painful 7 minutes, the numbness set in and we were fine. We swam the rest of our 20 minutes without much trouble.
Later we were talking about the first 7 minutes and Rick said, “Today they just made me angry.” I like training as much as the race. I always learn so much about myself and my training buddies. Last year our cold water training was harder than what we hit in San Francisco Bay by at least 8-10 degrees. We were very ready. I hope those words are comforting to Rick as we make our way to the start line of this race.
I am relieved to have a training buddy who is ready and willing to put in the first 7 minutes with me and swim the remaining time. It will get interesting as we add time. Yesterday I could feel the lack of response of my hands in the final few minutes, and I said to myself, “Oh yeah, I remember this…”
Who helps you accomplish your goals?
When Linda told me the story of her first triathlon, she perfectly articulated the importance of reconnecting with happy memories through swimming. If you can tap into past joy, you’ll look forward to your workouts.
My happy exercise secret is Richard Simmons.
During much of my childhood, my mom worked hard to manage her weight. She dieted, she went to a jazzercise class, and she did home workouts along with TV shows and exercise videos. Her prepackaged low-cal meals gave me a lifelong fear of quick-fix diets, but her “Sweatin’ to the Oldies” video tape made me fall in love with Richard Simmons.
Together, when I was preteen, she and I made a pilgrimage to a local mall to see Richard Simmons live on stage. Then, in college, I sweet-talked a friend into driving me to another mall so I could stand in line to get Richard Simmons to autograph his new cookbook for me. I also got my roommates hooked on “Disco Sweat” and other Richard Simmons video workouts. When stress and inactivity got us down, we pumped ourselves up by doing disco hair moves and shaking our booties.
In the technological transition from VCR to DVD player, somehow my Richard Simmons habit got lost; it had been years since I did the rhumba with Richard. But now that I bought myself DVDs, I can’t stop sweatin’! There’s something so uplifting about Richard’s sunny attitude, the wacky dance moves, the happy people of all shapes and sizes, and the great music. I had forgotten how good it makes me feel to hear Richard Simmons say, “I’m so proud of you!” and “Give yourself a hug every day; you deserve it!” The workouts are full of sass, silliness, and compassion so they lift my mood as well as my heart rate. I’m sure exercise endorphins have something to do with it, but I think it’s also just the knowledge that someone as unique, loving, and energetic as Richard Simmons is out there, still working hard every day to get people healthy.
Richard's autograph image courtesy of sleepeatgymrepeat.com
What puts a smile on your face when you exercise?
Posted by Linda on Jun 5, 2012 in community
, Linda's posts
I had to admit I was a little pre-occupied with an idea that I thought was going to be easy but was turning out to be more difficult than planned.
One of my sisters reads stories to pre-school children, and she is gaining a small library of costumes and books. Since she has almost everything else she needs or wants, this is a perfect gift idea to jump on for her birthday. She already has the bright yellow rain hat (think fisherman/ Skipper’s), and I wanted to get her boots and a story book that would go with it. Who better to ask about book titles, than my bookselling friend Tegan. I told her I was having trouble finding bright boots with yellow in them. She said, “Wait here…”
She came back in a flash from her back porch with these boots and a yellow sharpie! “I think this should do the trick… but tell your sister the boots leak.”
The boots had their gentle make over (one boot is done in the photo) and made it to my sister’s house only a few days late, as I remember.
This is why I love to think out loud. You never know who has what that will just fit some else’s life. It is so satisfying when that happens. I’ve been on both ends of the equation. “Oh you need this? I have it… here you go.” Love it!
A public thank you for a sweet generous moment, Tegan!
When has thinking out loud helped you or helped others?