July 20, 2014

Just your average "how it's going" post...

It's going GREAT. My life is quite mundane. I enjoy it, but I'm sure many people would poke their eyeballs out from the overall monotony. For me, there are hidden treasures in each and every day. Lately I've been finding lots of these treasures and so do not feel compelled to search for snarkable bullshit on other people's blogs. Perhaps I can provide shitty content for others to mock? It's anyone's guess...

Since I got back from our last camping trip, saw fireworks and wrote a blog post,  I've been busy...

1) Using my VITAMIX...

Margaritas are a SPECIAL kind of smoothie.
2) Getting FREE SLURPEES...

Slurpees are a kind of smoothie, too.
And they're free on 7-11 every year.
Worth noting in your calendar.

3) Managing 3 different drop-offs and pick-ups for my kids' camps every weekday...

Extremely cool place to have soccer camp...especially when your 9 years old.

Other side of the hills...a world away...
rowing on the reservoir.

Back to the other side of the hills (see them in the distance?)...
Right on the San Francisco Bay.
Pretty sweet place to have camp when you're any age.
I spend about 3+ hours in the car on average on any given day. The last two weeks have gone something like this:
  • out the door at 8:15
  • arrive at Camp #1 at 8:45 
  • arrive at Camp #2 at 9:00
  • drive home to fetch 3rd camper and oldest non-camper arriving at 9:30
  • leave home at 10:00 
  • arrive at Camp #3 at 10:30
  • arrive at hiking venue at 11:00 to give non-camper and myself something camp-like to do (because what's summer without camp?)
  • finish short hike and head home or do long hike and immediately begin camp pick-ups
  • leave hiking venue at 1:00
  • arrive at Camp #3 at 1:30
  • drive home arriving at 2:00
  • eat something
  • leave home at 2:30 
  • arrive at Camp #1 at 3:00
  • spend 30 minutes farting around
  • arrive at Camp #2 at 3:45 and leave at 4:10
  • drive home arriving at 5:00 (traffic is always horrible going home)
  • make and eat dinner
  • leave home at 6:00 for swimming lessons (I forgot to mention swimming lessons)
  • arrive at 6:20
  • leave swimming lessons at 7:15
  • arrive home at 7:30
  • collapse on my bed and realize why I need to get my oil changed every 6 weeks
The school year isn't as crazy because all of the kids save one go to the same school...but it's a 40-minute drive in heavy traffic to school in the morning and home in the afternoon. The drive is only 15 minutes when there is no traffic which actually does happen and is the norm for the reverse commute.

You can go ahead and give me massive amounts of grief for my seemingly huge carbon footprint...lots of kids, lots of driving...but our car runs on recycled garbage and our kids are all geniuses working on sustainability projects. No. That's a lie. The truth is we live in a really expensive region of the country and have to live far away from cool things like camps, movie theaters, swimming lessons, grocery stores and good schools in order to afford pleasant housing. You might suggest that we move, but my husband's business makes that extremely difficult. 

4) Coping with lice...which is really the most fun there is in the world. Really...it doesn't get any funner than this...

I found them on his head so we shaved him.
None of the other kids (including the girls with long, curly-ish hair)
had it...nor did my husband. But...I did. No, I didn't shave my head.
I went to a professional de-louser and got the full "spa" treatment.
5) Getting test results back that confirm my gastrointestinal situation is worse than I knew and researching how to heal it...

Plain, bland, chicken soup is good for the soul.
Or something. 
A year ago I posted about losing a ton of weight unintentionally and then gaining it (and more) back really quickly. Since then (and actually way before then), I've had some weird and significant GI issues...constipation being one. One doctor said, "IBS." Another doctor said, "Maybe it's SIBO?" So we decided to test for SIBO. While the test came back negative in terms of the numbers, the graph showed a textbook picture of what one would see for someone with a positive result.  Hence, we are treating me for SIBO. 

What is SIBO?

If you didn't click the link to Wikipedia provided above and really can't summon the energy to move the cursor up to do it now, here's a little quote:
SIBO is the accumulation of excessive amount of gut bacteria in the small intestine. Any condition which impairs the normal transit or motion of the small intestine can predispose it to SIBO.Crohn's disease and previous abdominal surgery are among the risk factors for the development of SIBO.
I did this recommended, crazy, X-treeeeme elemental diet last week to try to kill of the bad gut bacteria who've taken up residence. It kicked my ass. Plain chicken soup, plain hamburger patties, puréed carrots, grape gelatin AND THAT'S IT for 3 days. It worked. The bloating completely subsided. I wasn't constipated. I felt better once the 3 days were over. The during part was pure hell. I actually didn't eat the third day because I felt so sick. I started getting really depressed on that day because the thought of restricting my diet any further was...depressing. I cried. 

Then on Friday I saw a new doctor. Apparently my ileocecal valve doesn't work. And not only am I sensitive/intolerant to dairy, gluten, eggs, fish, and potato but Vitamin A, B complex vitamins, minerals and ... CARBS (rice, grains,...). WTF? So this guy is some kind of "wizard" who can fix my ileocecal valve AND resolve most, if not all, of my sensitivities/intolerances. I cannot fucking wait.

6) Hiking...

Last Monday's hike...
4.2 miles on a trail we've done before.

Last Tuesday's hike...
7.5 miles on a new trail.
We got totally lost for a little while and my son lost his shit.
This is the part where he was losing his shit.

Last Wednesday's hike...
9.2 miles in out-and-back format.
It was far easier than the previous day's mostly due to the
smaller hills and lack of scary cows.

Last Friday's hike...
we did a double of our normal 3-mile loop.
It felt pretty easy primarily because of familiarity.
We took the weekend off logging 26+ miles M-F and then started this past week off with a 4.2 and a 6-miler, intending to work up to a big 1-0. Then my bacterial die-off rendered me indisposed and cowering in my bed :( We're hoping to get there this coming week.

See what I did there?

Not only did I use bullet-point posting TWICE, but I plugged VitaMix, gave random life information, described my medical condition AND showed you #trailporn... ALL IN ONE POST!

I probably should enter the Runners' World Cover Contest so I can annoy the living shit out of everyone grubbing for votes, but I hate having my picture taken. And I've already done that "beg for votes from everyone you know on all avenues of social media to the point that they all fucking hate your guts" thing before...more than once. The prize wasn't worth the nuisance obtaining it caused. 

Who did you vote for in the Runners' World Popularity Contest?

Did you ever enter a grub-for-votes contest? Was it worth it?

Did you workout at all last week? Tell me about it so I can live vicariously!

Do you drive a lot in your daily life? Do you like driving? 

Do you have a big carbon footprint? Do you judge people by the size of theirs?

Was this post informative? Do you feel like you know me better? How much of your life do you share on your blog?

July 6, 2014

The last month has been one of my all-time favorite months...

...and I'm not even exaggerating.

So much awesome stuff has happened! Get ready...it's a long post with lots of pictures.

First, one of my favorite bloggers had a baby!

It was so super stressful for me though because she waited an extra 10 days past her due date to give birth and I was camping at the time and couldn't text her hourly for updates. Actually, I could. We had cell service in The Wild. But I didn't want to make her birth experience all about me.

Right before that happened, my kid was in her first-ever race! Not running.

She is second from the left.

I was pretty stoked she wanted to try rowing. I reassured her that just because it defined my lifestyle for over a decade that if she didn't like it, it would be no big deal. She told me she loved it after the first day. I was super annoying by asking her every. single. day. if she was just saying that or if it was true. She kept pleasing me by saying it was true. At the end of the week of camp, they had races. I really didn't want to make it all about me, so I didn't wear any of my old national team gear...just the hat. I was so bummed that no one noticed. Just kidding. Sort of. I didn't wear any of my gear...but I would have been bummed if no one noticed. Really just kidding. She was actually really good at it! And her boat did very well. And she wants to keep doing it. Not kidding at all. Or exaggerating.

The next amazing thing that happened was we went camping!!!!

When I talk about going camping people have been telling me to STFU under their breath because I sound like I think I fucking invented it. Honestly, it's just that I am SOOOOOO excited by it. I have only been four times since 1973. And three of those times have occurred in the last 14 months. Two of those times have occurred in the last two weeks. June was a Campstravaganza!

photo highlights of week one

we played cards with Game of Thrones cards.
I really liked the character ones and made a point of collecting them in my hand
even if they didn't help me win. 

We had lots of bacon every morning.
We learned how to use knives.
We played with banana slugs.
We went to the Drive-Thru Tree on the way home.
Leggett, CA...it was cool. It was worth it.
But you already know this stuff because you follow me on Instagram, right?

We traveled through some weird time-warp. Google Maps said it was supposed to take less than 4 hours but somehow it took over 6. Since we got a late start, it was pitch dark when we arrived. Setting up a tent with a passel of hungry, tired people is something I never thought I'd call fun. And I'm sticking with that thought.

Nonetheless, it was my all-time favorite camping experience...and I'm not even exaggerating.

Until this last one.

It surpassed all others in awesomeness, mostly because we scored the coolest campsite EVER.

photos of the amazingness that was week two

yes, those are our tents.
Big trees are the most amazing...and I'm not even exaggerating.
This creek and bridge were about 10 feet from our tents.
Kind of mosquito-y but the coolness made it worth the pain. 
The stumps were HUGE.
Another HUGE stump.
And silver patent leather shoes.
If you want to see her accessories, see IG.
We made marshmallow sculptures...
Ate salami and cheese on Frozen plates...

Hung out on the Eel River and made friends with dragonflies...
skipped stones...
Visited some trees that are over 1000 years old...
had some real issues with our campstove...
if only our campFIRE were that large...
cut my toe open...
it is not advisable to hike around a redwood grove in flipflops...
consider yourselves warned...
made fairy apartments...
and ran the length of 300+ foot fallen trees.

We finished camping on the 2nd and did fireworks on the 3rd...a neighboring city beats the crowds by going early. I'm not going to post any pictures of the fireworks because you can just google search "fireworks images" and see way better photos than what I ended up with. I tried to video the finale of the show but had my iPhone camera in the wrong mode and just took a blurry pic of the first thing to explode. 

My hip is super amazing...and I am totally NOT even exaggerating. No pain. Hiking up to 6 miles at a stretch. Schlepping camping shit hither and yon. Carrying tired kids on hikes. Driving for 6+ hours at a stretch with a lone slushie break. Yep. Hip replacement is killer. I'll post about my return-to-running plan soon, but for now I'm not dwelling on it. It's going to happen...just not now.


I almost forgot my rainbow engagement questions! Ugh...I am soooo out of practice.

Do you camp? Where's your favorite place?

Are you a mountains, forest, desert, or beach person?

Do you like fireworks? Did you take pictures and post them on your blog or IG? I want to see them!
–I LOVE fireworks.

What's your favorite flavor Jolly Rancher candy?

If you had a hip replacement, would you run on it?

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