Sunday, October 31, 2010

I've come to realize that of them all, October really is my favorite month. Odd that...considering I have tropical blood coursing through my veins.

I love the fullness of it...the diverseness of it...the changing weather, the changing colors...the anticipation of things to come. Most of all, I love the latter half...birthdays and then...Halloween.

In the early semi-dark hours this morning, coffee mug in hand and gazing out the window at the fog and slight sparkle of wasn't difficult to see how the ancient Celts believed that the Wall was thin on this day. Just in case they were right and I am wrong...we were ready with our disguises.

Wee bats walking hand in hand with grandfathers...making their way down the neighborhood to the local Truck-or-Treat festivities...

Followed close behind by a pint size princess...and her grandmother escort...

A weekend of autumn-ness...sofa forts and movies...snug and safe from the cold wet out side...bonfire, s'mores and fellowship with dear friends. Naps and cups of ginger tea this afternoon.

Yes...October really is a most delightful month.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

Three years...gone in a blink...

Last Friday was the wee girl's 3rd birthday. Again...where did the time go? I can't even begin to imagine life without this little whirlwind in it...

She got her wish...a purple and pink fairy castle cake...and, needless to say, she was delighted!

She's had a week of doctor's appointments. All routine things...three year checkup and the eye exam she now gets every four months. Everyone declared her Well and Healthy. She's actually gaining weight...growing taller...losing some of the clumsiness we had just assumed was part of her makeup. We've been through a lot with this little one--not just in the past six months either, though this year has by far and above been the toughest.

I love you, Kyleigh Gray...all the way to the moon...and back.

Saturday, October 23, 2010

And I was running!

Today was the day. My first 5k. I really doesn't seem like a big deal...3.1 miles? Nothing to it, right? My sister and I have both been running that distance our past several runs. But today? Gathering with all of the other loony toons out in the cold? Pinning on race numbers? It was a Big Deal.

We both ran the entire way and finished with our own personal best times! My sister even medaled--3rd in her age group! Thanks for being nuts enough to not even hesitate about this whole running thing, Donia! You rock!

Other members of our family felt it was a Big Deal as well. Our mom--who is not a morning person--was there before the race started to cheer us on! Then as we came around the mile and a half mark, there was my sister's husband and father-in-law cheering and ready with the camera. Thanks for the pictures, Billy!

By far the greatest supporter--my partner in crime. He didn't even blink, whine, or mutter one single complaint about being the designated parent for the morning. Way to go, Daddy-O!

Wednesday, October 20, 2010

Songs remember...

This afternoon found me sculpting tiny bricks in various shades of purple for a certain little girl's castle birthday cake. Nanci Griffith was keeping me company...a CD I've had forever. As the music poured over me, lost in the task of brick building, my mind wandered back to years ago when this song in particular was my life.

It's a long and dusty road
It's a hot and heavy load
And the folks I meet ain't always kind
Some are bad and some are good
Some have done the best they could
Some have tried to ease my trouble in mind

And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
Where I'm bound
I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

I've been wandering through this land
Just doin' the best I can
Tryin' to find what I was meant to do
And the people that I see
Look as worried as can be
And it looks like they are wonderin',too

And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
Where I'm bound
I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

And I had me a buddy back home
But he started out to roam
And I hear he's out by Frisco Bay
And, sometimes, when I've had a few
His old voice comes ringin' through
And I'm goin' out to see him some old day

And I can't help but wonder where I'm bound
Where I'm bound
I can't help but wonder where I'm bound

If you see me passin' by
And you sit and wonder why
And you wish that you were a rambler,too
Nail your shoes to the kitchen floor
Lace 'em up and bar the door
Thank the stars for the roof that's over you

Life is a funny thing...what, with all of the twists, turns, curves and deadly cliffs. But what I've had, what I've experienced, what I've come through? I wouldn't trade it for anything. True, there have been days--months, arguably years--here and there that I would rather not have gone through. However, had I not...would I still be the person I am here and now? I'm content enough with myself and situation that I'd rather not risk an alternate outcome/future by doing away with the offending time frames.

Since we're on the subject of songs (we really are, trust me) sister-from-another-mother, Beth, brought up the subject of "theme songs". Specifically, one's own theme song. My first thought was Bruce Springsteen's "Tougher than the Rest". But upon reflection, while it certainly reflects the now, I think it's too limiting. I think any one song is too limiting. There are songs that fit moments. Fit memories. But fit my life in entirety? I do not believe that particular song has been written. I'm okay with that. And, of course, I can't help but ask the same question first asked by Ms. Blixen...

If I know a song of Africa, of the giraffe and the African new moon lying on her back, of the plows in the fields and the sweaty faces of the coffee pickers, does Africa know a song of me? Will the air over the plain quiver with a color that I have had on, or the children invent a game in which my name is, or the full moon throw a shadow over the gravel of the drive that was like me, or will the eagles of the Ngong Hills look out for me? ~ Karen Blixen

But today? Here and now? I would choose "Ballad of Serenity"...

Take my love.
Take my land.
Take me where I cannot stand.
I don't care,
I'm still free.
You can't take the sky from me.

What about you? What would your theme song be? And, yes, my husband, I am fully aware that your's is Ms. Turner's "Simply the Best". While I do concur (how could I not?), maybe you can come up with an alternate?

Side the post I linked to and realizing the distance we've traveled since then--physically, emotionally, grammatically--and I'm still humbled and awed with the strength of our little family, the support of friends and the obvious hand of God. Simply amazing.

Sunday, October 17, 2010

That quiet before the storm...

It's going to be a full and busy week...however, someone is on vacation for the next two weeks...well, one week of real time off and one week of there-are-these-one-or-two-or-three-things-that-were-already-planned-that-I-have-to-do time off...but, still...this week is the important one!

Tomorrow is baking and birthday shopping. Wee girlie has a birthday on Friday and has requested a princess castle cake. And even though it goes against every fiber in my being...she's getting her princess castle cake. The child is spoiled rotten! Where are her parents?! Oh...wait...

Her "party" will consist of grandparents and another family who might as well be family...she's 3, her concept of "party" is Cake and Presents. Mainly cake. And she's getting little cupcakes to share with her kiddie classmates at preschool that morning.

My sister and I are running in our first 5k on Saturday. I know! Saturday! After we both had frustrating run days the middle of last week, we both hit our 5k mark on Friday! And just about with the same time as well. Not sure if she did the Rocky Balboa dance like I did...I forgot to ask. We also both ran today and both saw better times. I am so excited to be able to do this with my big sister! I think we're both really looking forward to the race. How kooky is that? We're already talking about the big 10k in the spring. And that's just crazy.

Oh, and I decided to make up race t-shirts for us. My sister decided, since October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, to run in honor of her sweet neighbor and friend who has been in a drawn out, down and dirty battle with the disease for the past few years. So I'm making a shirt for each of t-shirt with a large hot pink ribbon on the back and "Team Netta" in pink, sparkly letters. We should stand out in a crowd in that, don'tcha think?

So see? The week is packed. But in a good, fun, not-really-stressed-out way. That's my kind of Busy!

Friday, October 15, 2010

Morbid and creepifying, I got no problem with...

A most fun filled afternoon at the pumpkin patch. We came home with a trunk full of, orange, big and small!

So? Have we found our perfect Christmas card portrait or what?!

Except that's Babu guest starring as Igor..but it's still a great family portrait!

Thursday, October 14, 2010

One of those "win/win" things...

Apparently I am either not challenging myself enough already or I actually have time on my hands and I just can't allow that.

Bakerella mentioned a cupcake contest...actually, she had me at the amazing portrait of a chocolate cupcake...and the crazy person that lives in my head quietly screamed, "You should so totally go for it!"

So I am. Because, after all is said and done, at the end of the day...we eat chocolate cupcakes. Yeah...I fail to see the downside.

And the head dwelling crazy person has rarely steered me wrong. Almost rarely. There was this one time...

Tuesday, October 12, 2010


Just in case some of us forget...

I got nothin'...

Nope. Not a thing.

Okay, that's not true. I have a fair number of draft posts. Things I thought I had to say, started to say them and then...who knows? Distraction? Calls of duty?

Anyway. Still here. Still breathing. Still running. Just thought someone might want to know that.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

1,000 words...

...even Butterfly Princesses need Daddy snuggles

Some things just need to be shared...

Stunningly beautiful in its simplicity...

The music is "Tatooine" by Jeremy Messersmith...beautiful all in itself.

Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Just another level of Crazy...

Never in a bazillion years would I have thought that I'd be sitting here typing out the statement "I am a Runner". Never, ever, ever. I am. I am a Runner. And it's a heady thing.

Here are my goals for the next year:

Oct. 23rd...5k "Run for the Grapes"
Nov. (Thanksgiving Day)...10k Turkey Trot (two hours east of here in our old neighborhood)
Dec. 4th...5K Jingle Bell Run (the goal that started it all!)
March 2011...local 10K
Sept. 2011 (Labor Day weekend)...Rock-n-Roll Half Marathon in Virginia Beach. Yes...that says Half in 13 miles.

Of course, there will probably be a smattering of other 5k races thrown know, just for fun.

I was (jokingly) informed by Himself earlier that I had his full support up to a full marathon. Why? Because he has yet to run that far all at once. That just means he'll have to run it with me.

Friday, October 1, 2010

In case you were unaware...

The 5K journal gets updated on a very regular basis...just in case anyone held a morbid curiosity of my own self torture...