Wednesday, April 30, 2008

Day 10

Just got back from a slog. Day 8 and 9 were treadmill days. It's kind of nice to see the numbers ticking away in front of you, but golly is it boring otherwise. It would help if the treadmill were in front of a tv or even a window, but there's no convenient way to place it that way in our house. So today I made it outside again - yippee! It's been pretty chilly the past couple of days - down in the low 40's - but the sun came out again today and it's still really pretty out there.
How exciting is this? I'm posting about the weather!
Trying to line up some work for the summer. The mystery shows are suffering somewhat from the economy - my Friday overnight show was just cancelled. My Standardized Patient gigs at the Medical School are coming along - I'm only two training sessions away from actually presenting a case! I've been training since October, about two sessions per month. It's the l-o-n-g-e-s-t training program in the history of the world. But it's nice to get paid for sitting around and talking about stuff, I guess. So I'm looking for more work. There are some summer theater camps that might be interested, and I just passed a Starbucks that is hiring. Still no longer range plans, though. I'm really stuck when I try to formulate something longer term, and the kids are keeping me so busy that it's easy to be distracted away from it anyway.
Oh, well. My noodles are boiling, so I'm off to undo all the hard work I just did.

Sunday, April 27, 2008

Daffodils and princesses

Well, I don't know if you can see the connection or not. The original clump of daffodils that inspired this connection for me had faded beyond redemption. These are ones from my front yard - and they're not exactly the same, but you get the idea.

Did the hill again on Day 5 - ran in the village on Day 6. Today, the 7th day, I rested.

Thursday, April 24, 2008

Day 4

Ran in Sewickley village today - some actual running occurred. Later, I happened to drive the same route, and it's almost exactly 3.5 miles. I probably ran 2 of it, all told. Not all at once, mind you, but still, it gave me some hope.
It's really interesting to have Steve's ipod, with all his old music stored on it, plus some of the stuff I've tacked on. I put it on shuffle, and get this surreal accompaniment to my slogging. Today was some Massachusetts folk artists, a little Mozart, some Tracey Chapman, Alas for You from Godspell, some Bjork (speaking of surreal!), At the End of the Day from Les Mis, Norah Jones, kd lang, and a couple of other artists I wasn't familiar with, but whose songs I enjoyed. The only ones I've skipped through are some of the Christmas tunes. They just didn't jive with the dogwoods, magnolias, and daffodils.
On yesterday's walk I saw some past-their-prime daffoldils that totally reminded me of an illustration in Melissa's old fairy tale book - remember the Princess and the Pea? When she knocks on the door or the castle and she's all dripping wet, but still holding out her skirts for a curtsey, and the fluid lines of her dress and hair melt into the rain cascading down behind her? Maybe I'll try to post a picture of it soon. Well, anyway, the daffodils had that same ruined elegance look. The lines distorted, but still stately - the colors blurred, but still vibrant. I wish I'd had my camera. Maybe I'll try to go up there again tomorrow, before the next batch of storms and cold come, destroying the last of the flowers.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Another video

Here's one of the MANY dinosaur songs they did. This one's called "Dinosaur Boogie" - which if Mom is pronouncing it, is BOO-gy.

Day 3 of the running is scheduled for about 6:00pm this evening. I'll let you know how it goes. Because I know, you're totally enthralled.


Went up hill. Big hill. Bad hill. Big, bad, hilly hill.

Wildlife I encountered:

One groundhog

Two Geese

5 deer (alive) 1 deer (extremely dead)

6 wild turkeys

Numerous birds.

One very determined gnat who kept me company for about 1/2 an hour

Total duration of walk: 1 hour, 45 minutes

Thing I was most grateful for: That the elementary school was having a band concert, so I could go in and use the bathroom before I pooped myself.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Day 2

Yep, I did it again. Got the boys on the bus, parked Cinderella in front of the computer, and walked/ran/slogged again. Up through Sewickley village again - my usual route. SUCH a gorgeous day! So many flowering trees, daffodils, tulips, hydrangeas, brillant blue sky, cool breeze...such a shame to have to ruin it by attempting forward motion with my decrepit old body.

Here is some video from the Dino show. Almost as good as being there! Is he not the cutest thing you've ever seen???

Monday, April 21, 2008


I walked today.
I got up, got the boys on the bus, dressed in one of my three threadbare sports bras, yoga pants that are too tight in the waist, running socks, Steelers T-shirt, hat, running shoes. Got the girl off to school. Plugged another set of earphones (still haven't found ones I like) into hand-me-down iPod (thanks, Steve!) and set off. One mile from the church to the park, up and down several very steep and muddy walking trails, and one mile back. I tried to run some, but didn't get very far.
My feet hurt. My ankles hurt. My knees hurt.
I suck.
I remember when I used to do this a lot. I also know that if I don't do it EVERY DAY, I'll go long stretches without doing it at all. It sucks being back at Day 1.
However, I've got to start somewhere. I have been spending that past several months NOT doing it, and self-medicating my increasing bouts of depression with food. I know I'm self-medicating while I do it, and yet seem unable to stop. The magazine articles suggest retail therapy instead. To which I reply: HA!!! Without my church paycheck, my discretionary spending budget has dropped from negligable to none.
Well, enough whining.
Tarzan seems a little better. His dinosaur play was great - he was right in the front (there are advantages to being short!) and sang every word nice and loud. SO cute. So that's one less thing for him to worry about. His first day at T-ball went great too. He's got a lot more natural athletic ability than some (not mentioning any names) and I think he'll do really well. Cindrella found some friends to play Barbies with, and had a ball. Scooby wandered around, above it all, complaining that I wouldn't let him climb the chain link fence, and insisting he didn't FEEL like reading the book he'd brought. Oh, well!
We finally planted some grass on the right-hand side of the yard. It's only been 8 months! We got some nice soaking rain and the next few days should be sunny, so it should do well. The kids are already clamoring to put the pool up. Now that I know what a pain in the ass it is, I'm not really looking forward to it!
Current reads: A history of Shakespeare by Bill Bryson; Eats, Shoots and Leaves (the punctuation book); Bird by Bird by Anne Lamott
All good - all highly recommended!

Tuesday, April 15, 2008

Bump in the Night

I'm a little worried about Tarzan. He's been really fretful and anxious lately, which is not at all like him. (Although, I need to be careful about characterizing what is "like him" because he, like the other two, is growing and changing all the time.) Ever since the sleepover-that-wasn't, he's had a little trouble sleeping without being snuggled. And when I went away with Scooby, it really intensified. He had a tummy-ache at Granny's, and "bad pictures in his head" and the next night, home with Daddy, he freaked out and cried for four hours, saying he missed Mommy. And, he wrote me this:

Which is very sweet, but breaks my heart!!! (That's Tarzan, in the blue, sitting at the kitchen table, and that's me in the red, toasting waffles.)
He says he saw a book in the library. A scary book, with a scary alien on the cover. And now, he imagines, this scary alien is going to nail him to a wall. Yeesh.
Some of it is his age, I know. Scooby went through the same thing at this age. I vividly remember my dreams of a pirate ship sailing through the Leaver's woods towards our house, bound for pillage and destruction, and I'm pretty sure I was about the same age then. So I'm trying to be patient, and wait for it to pass.
Of course, those thoughts always go through my head. You know, THOSE thoughts. About what may have happened at this sleepover? But I don't think anything did, other than his imagination slipping into another gear.
THOSE thoughts are the things that sneak into my head on a regular basis and are promptly shooshed and squashed down. "What if the school bus driver just never brings them home?" "What if some bully corners them in the school bathroom?" "What if this birthday party is all a ruse for a pedophiliac sex group?" Unfounded and without basis - and all part of the fear of letting them go, little by little. THOSE thoughts aren't allowed to gain purchase on any part of my mind. But I can't refuse them entry. Some day, they may be telling the truth.
But, this has taken a morbid turn. Tarzan is going to be fine. The alien picture will eventually fade, and new fears will take it's place. He has two birthday parties this week, a Dinosaur play in class on Friday, and a field trip next week. He'll get distracted. He'll move on. In the meantime, I'll hold him a little tighter, kiss him a little more, and read him happy stories about pirate ships. (Hey, that was my nightmare; not his.)

Sunday, April 13, 2008

And the chapter closes

Well, we're not moving on to the World Finals in Maryland. Which is probably a good thing, sanity-wise; but I have to admit, it's disappointing after having gotten so far. The team ultimately came in 9th out of 15 - which is not as good as I would have liked, but it still means they're in the top ten in the state! And they really did the best they could do, which is all I can ask for. Scooby was disappointed, but he seems okay about it today. And we had a beautiful day in Altoona - sunshine, puffy clouds, cool breezes...the kids got to spend almost 3 hours playing outside on a big football field. There was a duck-duck-goose game for awhile with almost 100 kids in it! According to my calculations, there were about 1,500 kids from third grade through high school that participated in the state finals. We actually didn't get to see many of the other groups perform, since the kids really wanted to run around outside. Maybe next year. Good grief! Did I just say that??? So the Odyssey is concluded for 2008 - all that's left to do is decide which props to trash and which to salvage for reusable materials. It's been quite an adventure. Now back to real life...

Friday, April 11, 2008

State Finals, here we come!

Well, we're off to Altoona for the Odyssey of the Mind State Finals! Send us good thoughts and safe travel prayers. I'll post on Sunday and let you know how our team did. They're already winners, whatever happens!!!

Monday, April 07, 2008

Tooth Tales, Take Two

I warned you, tooth fairy!

Sunday, April 06, 2008

Well, Tarzan's first attempt at real live big-boy sleepover ended at about 10:45pm. The other boy's dad brought him to the front door and said, "Maybe next time" and took off. Apparently, he was fine until it was time to get PJ's on and get into bed - then he got worried about what might happen if he had a nightmare in the middle of the night and everyone else was sleeping. Legitimate fear, in my opinion. So home he came. Next time maybe we'll try it over here.
I took myself out last night and went to see the Pittsburgh Playhouse production of Romeo and Juliet. I hadn't seen a fully staged version since probably ninth grade. The sets, lights, costumes, fight choreography, and music were really good. The acting was...pretty young. Undergrad theater majors, and it really showed. But I enjoyed it and the best part was...on my way in, a lady was giving away her extra tickets, and I got in free! I'd go more often if I could be assured of that happening!!!

Tuesday, April 01, 2008

Tarzan's Lost Tooth

Look out toothfairy!