Category Archives: Life in general

General life stuff

This And That

I think when last I left you, I had been in Hawaii then sadly came home to the freezing cold.  I did post a picture of some snow, but here… I have a better one.  My first day back at work, I got stuck, even with studded snow tires.  I’m the blue SUV.  I didn’t feel half as bad as the yellow JEEP who also got just as stuck.  (Okay, so we both only have front-wheel drive.)  No one got up the driveway that day.  Eventually when it was time to go home, we who were stuck had to dig ourselves out.  Gotta say, I have some really great co-workers as everyone helped (which basically consisted of 3 other women, but damn, we killed it with the snow shovels… boys, take note, 😀 ).

It’s the beginning of March and with all the snow and cold weather, we’ve yet to see any babies at the wildlife rescue center, for which I’m extremely grateful.  History dictates that first up will be the baby cottontails or the baby raptors.  But while we don’t have wild baby bunnies yet, I do have have one big baby that I care for and hug on daily… the clinic manager’s bunny that hangs out with me and guilts me into feeding him treats.  Daryl got himself a nice polar bear knitted cap which he doesn’t really like wearing, but it doesn’t matter, he’s too freaking cute.  (Just FYI… I do not cuddle on the wild baby bunnies… wildlife remains wild.)

This weekend was the Seattle Allstate Hot Chocolate 15k that James and I both signed up for to represent BibRave.  It was the first race of 2018 for both of us.  As this is a partnered event with Bibrave, I’ll cover the legalities now:

Disclaimer: I received free entry to the Allstate Hot Chocolate Seattle race as part of being a BibRave Pro. Learn more about becoming a BibRave Pro (ambassador), and check out BibRave.com to review find and write race reviews!”

Saturday had us going to the race expo and practicing travel logistics for the race on Sunday.  But, I have to say, this race support has been great from the very start.  Once I signed up, I was emailed a 10-week training plan based on my pace.  They then emailed me every week to remind me which week I was supposed to be on for training.  Fabulous support throughout the training.  Kudos to them.

If you want to know how I did, you’ll have to stay tuned.  Spoiler alert:  I did not have a good day.

 

 

Lastly, today would have been my mother’s 81st birthday AND my brother’s 60th birthday.  Yes, my mother’s first child was born on her 21st birthday… what a fabulous gift.  For those who are new to my blog, my brother died in 2015 from cancer and my mother died several months later in 2016 of complications from a GI bleed.

Today, on their special day, this song is for them:

Lyrics:

Sorry I never told you
All I wanted to say
Now it’s too late to hold you
‘Cause you’ve flown away
So far away
Never had I imagined
Living without your smile
Feeling and knowing you hear me
It keeps me alive
Alive
And I know you’re shining down on me from heaven
Like so many friends we’ve lost along the way
And I know eventually we’ll be together
One sweet day
Darling I never showed you
Assumed you’d always be there
I, I took your presence for granted
But I always cared
And I miss the love we shared
And I know you’re shining down on me from heaven
Like so many friends we’ve lost along the way
And I know eventually we’ll be together
One sweet day
Although the sun will never shine the same
I’ll always look to a brighter day
Lord I know when I lay me down to sleep
You will always listen as I pray
And I know you’re shining down on me from heaven
Like so many friends we’ve lost along the way
And I know eventually we’ll be together
One sweet day
Sorry I never told you
All I wanted to say

M.I.A.

Okay, not really MIA. I’m actually in Hawaii! And it can be hard to keep up with you wonderful people while on holiday, so do please forgive me! My days have been filled to the brim with fun Hawaii activities, and I’m exhausted by the time I settle down to relax. I’ve only managed 2 runs while here, have had to forfeit the biggest Squad Runner mission points of the month, but I’m enjoying life immensely right now and loving the kicked back Island lifestyle.

My entertainment this morning has been watching some Nene geese (Hawaii’s state bird) chase off wild roosters and chickens from their turf. (“Watch me whip… watch me Nene…,” okay, sorry, corny much? lol)

We return to the Pacific Northwest late Monday night, where it’s going to be a very cold 19 deg F. This is one time I’m not looking forward to going back home. But I mustn’t think of that now… I still have 2 days left in paradise!

Another Year, Another Birthday

It doesn’t take much to put my family into celebration mode.  We’ll celebrate any little thing.  But this week was a full-on celebration all week long. Okay, kinda sorta.  Okay, not really.  We celebrated one night.  But the spirit was there all week long.

Yes, another birthday has come and gone for me.  Cheers to my Squad Runner teammate who told me if I ran a kilometer for every year I was alive, I would complete a half marathon.  A half marathon is just over 21K… so yeah, I couldn’t help but smile… or in reality, laugh out loud.

Jamesy surprised me with a few goodies… especially the Momentum Jewelry.  Do you all see it and get it?  “I can and I will” is the tag line for my blog!  And the “Be Awesome Today,” well that’s because I’m awesome every day, isn’t it!  (Ha! Someone is sure full of herself right now, lol.)

He also got me some new shoes!!  We all need new shoes, don’t we!!  The more, the better I say!  Twenty years ago, my closet was filled with high heels and sandals… now it’s overrun with running shoes.  My how times and priorities change.

And meet Riku, a gift from my son. Riku is a character from my favorite video game, Kingdom Hearts.  Everyone in this family loves the Funko figures; AJ has the most by far, but James is closing in on him for a very close 2nd. Me, I’m at the back of the pack with just this one (see what I did there?  Running reference, lol).

And with that, my friends, it has been a very good week.  And even after a night of karaoking, I still managed to get 4 miles in today, with the goal of a 10K tomorrow.  So, yeah… a really good week.

Happy trails!

 

Happy New Year!

I got an email from my big sister nagging me about being lax on my blog, so I thought I’d just stop in and say “Hiya!”

My big sis Angela on graduation day from the University of Arizona.

Hope everyone had a rockin’ New Years Eve!!  It was traditional for us… a little karaoke and then we watched the Space Needle fireworks on TV.  We had some Christmas crackers to pop open at midnight, so minimal noise… other than the whistle AJ got in his.  And no… I have no idea why they sell Christmas crackers for NYE here.

After a nice 10-day vacation, I had to go back to work on Tuesday which proved to be difficult.  I had gotten used to sleeping in; however, I managed some time on the treadmill before heading off to work, hoping it would put me in the right frame of mind.  It may have helped. A little. Our first patient of the year was a barred owl trapped in a chimney.  PSA:  If you don’t want birds in your chimney, cover your chimney with wire so the birds can’t enter.  Nesting season will be here soon and some birds love to nest in chimneys.  Once a bird has laid its eggs, it is a U.S. federal offense to disturb the nest until it’s empty, so plan ahead and be prepared.

Tomorrow is D-Day for AJ.  Back to school he goes after a nice 2-week winter break.  I probably dread it more than he does.  Getting him up in the early morning hours is hellish… but Santa was smart and gave him a new alarm clock.  Now if only I could find one that sounded more like an air raid siren…

#truth

Thanks to #SquadRunner and the motivation I get from my teammates, running has been good to me… or I’ve been good to my running.  Either/or.  While my mileage wasn’t high by any standards last week (just over 13 miles), I did have a 6-day running streak going through New Year’s weekend, with 2 runs completed on January 1st to start the year off right (one was 1.5 miles, the other a nice 5K).  I have my first race coming up the beginning of March (Seattle Hot Chocolate 15K… more on that later), and I’ve also entered a 175-mile challenge… run 175 miles by March 16 (34 miles down, 141 to go).

Points reset every month.

So endeth the first week of 2018! Dilly dilly!  Make it a great 2nd week, my friends!!

Okay sis, you can stop nagging me now, lol. (c. 1973)

And The Winner Is…

We have returned from warm San Antonio back to the freezing cold of the Pacific Northwest!  I kid you not… 85 degrees in San Antonio the day we left and 39 degrees in Seattle when we landed!  But I’ll write more on that later…

In the meantime… we have a winner from the #GivingTuesday drawing!

Thank you to everyone who stopped by and to everyone who entered.  I wish all of you could win… but unfortunately… there can be only one! (Wildlife calendar goes to anyone who knows what movie that is from, but please email me at neveradullbling(at)gmail, don’t answer it below.  You have until December 12th.)

And now for the results…

He’s grown since last year, hasn’t he!

There you have it!  Again, thank you all for your support and encouragement!  Stay tuned as Rock ‘N’ Roll San Antonio adventures will be posted soon!!

Lucky Number 13

Actually, I’m not fond of this number at all.

At The Last Supper, there were 13 people around the table… the 13th supposedly being Judas who betrayed Christ.

On Friday the 13th, in October 1307, Philip IV of France arrested hundreds of the Knights Templar, then tortured and murdered them (they protected Christian pilgrims during the Crusades).

In a tarot card deck, XIII is the card of Death.

The Apollo 13 lunar mission was a “successful failure” (successful because no one died).

However….

That isn’t really the point of my post.

My point then??  Glad you asked!!

My baby boy just turned 13!!  I am now officially the mother of a teenager (may the Good Lord have mercy on my soul)!

Happy Birthday AJ!!

 

1st Birthday

9th Birthday

13 candles nearly set off the smoke detectors.

13th Birthday

Wow. Growing up. #GoHawks

I’m still not fond of the number 13… but I think I can live with it for a year.

Now I’m Here

Focus in life has taken a slight shift as of late.  Here… let me break it on down for you.

Just a refresher… in early September, it was discovered that James had a herniated disk.  Because of this, most of our long-distance travel plans and races were cancelled, as well as some local.  In the meantime, the most important thing going on right now is James healing.

Have you ever lived with a runner/active person who is completely incapacitated?  Not only is there the physical pain to deal with, there’s the depression associated with not being able to be active.  He can’t bend, twist, push, pull, lift anything more than 5 pounds, stand for long periods, or even walk without pain.  And he is not a happy camper.

It’s not been an easy road, especially for James.  His new “normal” is horrible pain if he’s not in a neutral spine position.  He underwent an MRI so that he could get an epidural injection for pain relief and had the injection about 10 days ago.  The injection was supposed to help him start more aggressive physical therapy so that he could begin his healing journey.  The verdict is still out on whether or not it has helped.  We don’t know if James is going to need surgery or not, but we do know if the pain doesn’t ease up soon, the option of a diskectomy at the new year will be discussed.

Hence, I’ve joined a gym to get me the hell out of the house (#kiddingnotkidding).

Actually, as Fall has arrived, and with it rain and 35-degree (F) temps in the morning, I’m enjoying having a change of scenery with the gym and a change-up in routine.  And they have the nicest treadmills on which to run.  As an experiment, I got on the elliptical and realized just how out of shape my non-running muscles truly are, so I believe I got back into the gym just in the nick of time.

Which brings me to why I haven’t been as active on WordPress or social media as I am normally.  I’m in the process of finding the proper balance of a new routine, so forgive me if I’ve been lame and neglectful.

But wait!  There’s more!

I’m also in the process of testing some Oofos recovery sandals and it just so happens I have a brand new pair to give away.  Are you female and wear a size 9? Do you like flip flops? Do you like the color black? Do you like walking on clouds? Contact me at neveradullbling@gmail.com.  You don’t need to be a runner to enjoy these!

By the way, Marine Corps Marathon is this weekend… heavy sigh from both of us.  But definitely something to look forward to next year…

Happy training, my friends!

NOTE:  As of 8 a.m. Pacific, the Oofos have been snatched up.  Yayyyy Donna!  Thank you for contacting me and being such a great supporter and friend!

Fun At Work… and Other Stuff

Sometimes my boss and I have to find creative ways to entertain ourselves at work in order to survive the madness of dealing with the general public.  She’s only 2 months older than I, so we completely understand each other and think along the same lines.

On Instagram, a fake male profile followed me and then promptly sent me a private message.  I knew it was a fake… I’m not gullible nor an idiot… so I told my boss that I wanted to mess with him.  My boss wanted in on the fun… so she told me what to write back.  The following conversation ensued:

 

Nigeria.  Wow.  I cannot believe people still use that scam.  Even my child was smarter than that. Of course, my side of the conversation is the one in blue.  Continuing on…

If you are American and not 12 years old, you would understand the reference of ruby slippers. And so endeth our conversation.  He didn’t like my response that Glenda could help him. Maybe the scammers have a “no-contact list” and I’ve made it.  But if it happens again, we’re going for gold.  I will help the scammer… at least they will think I’m helping from the replies I send.

Oh… BTW… if you get a follow from “whitlockchristopher95” on IG, it’s a total scam.  Hopefully he won’t be around for too much longer… I’ve reported him.

Moving on…

I’ve given up on my training “weekly recaps,” sorry.  Those posts don’t work for me, way too much negative. You’ll just have to wait and see if I finish the marathon on October 22nd… your guess is as good as mine.  If I don’t finish, it certainly won’t be from lack of training.  It’ll be because my spirit animal is the “turtle.” #truth  (but I did run 12 miles today, even though the heat sucked the life out of me)

However, on that note, next weekend I have a half-marathon race… the Seattle Craft Classic. The following weekend, we’ve signed up for the Sounders Rave Green Run (purely for the bling as this past year our soccer team won the MLS championship and we’ll get the championship medal), and the weekend after that, I have the North County Wine Run Half-Marathon. September is an extremely busy month, but the race experience will do me good in getting rid of the nerves I’ll experience on the day of the marathon.  I hope.

As well…

My 12-year-old son is now taller than me.  He has it in writing from the doctor and everything. He’s officially 5 feet 8 inches.  At 12.  99th percentile.  I’m thrilled that he’s so tall, and he loves rubbing it in.  He will bypass his father by this time next year.  He also starts 7th grade on Wednesday.

And finally…

Last Friday we lost a very special blogger friend.  Terry from Spearfruit passed on.  Terry had bladder cancer, for which there is no cure.  I started following him back in 2015 after my brother passed away from cancer, hoping for answers.  Funny enough, I did get my answers about a month ago. Terry was always upbeat, positive, accepted his diagnosis, knew he was dying, but never failed to tell his friends “have a happy day.”

Back when Terry was healthier, he would do a “boogie” type of video to the best 70’s music.  It was just silly fun.  He enjoyed doing it.  He enjoyed making his friends smile.  And we all enjoyed it in return.  To Terry, I hope you’re boogieing all night long now.

The following is one of his last happy boogies.  Even his husband Gary danced in it.  They took a cruise at the end of last year and had a bang-up time as they knew full well it would be Terry’s last.

Enjoy this with the fun spirit intended… and never forget to tell your loved ones how you feel today… as tomorrow may be too late.

Everything Happens For A Reason

I do not believe in coincidence.  I do believe that everything happens for a reason.

I was raised to be spiritual, to love God, to trust in God’s will, to believe that no matter what everything works out in the end.  Through the years, particularly when I was a young adult, I had my doubts.  I’m a “black-and-white, no gray area” type of person, so I started to doubt the concept of God and went with the scientific explanation of the universe.  That didn’t work well for me.  My life went to hell in a hand basket.  I then started to strengthen my spirituality, and my life started coming together.  I continue to strengthen my spirituality and accept there are things that are not meant to be explained or understood.

Therefore, I do not believe in coincidence.  Everything happens for a reason, even if it is not specifically clear at any given time.

My brother Kris died a little over 1-1/2 years ago from bone and lung cancer at the age of 57.  From the time he was diagnosed to the time he died was just 3 weeks.  They tried radiation and one dose of chemotherapy which he could not tolerate.  They then put him on hospice and sent him home with his wife.

January 2015… on his way to Maui.

He never told me he was ill.  He knew he was going to die, and he never said goodbye.  And I was angry.  Very angry.  Regardless, I ran my next half-marathon less than 2 months later in his memory.  It was my goodbye to him… I was running Maui, his most favorite place in the world (…everything happens for a reason.  I do not believe it was coincidence that my first race after his death happened to be in Maui.).

However, sometime soon after Kris died, I discovered Terry from Spearfruit (everything happens for a reason).  Terry was having his own battle with cancer, and still is, fighting every day for his life.  Terry recently wrote a post, I Will See Her Again, about a recent visit with his mom, sister, and brother.  Because of this heartfelt post, I now understand why my brother never said anything.

My brother didn’t “do” emotions.  He expressed love and occasionally anger or frustration, but he never showed grief or sadness.  Outwardly anyway.  He despised any type of drama.  He accepted the way things were and moved past it.

It took me a year and a half, and finally Terry’s post, to realize my brother couldn’t deal with the emotions that would have come with saying goodbye to the people he loved.  He had enough to process in dealing with his own mortality, and the emotions of having to say goodbye were just too much for him to handle in the short time he had left.

Taken a couple of days before he died, November 2015.

Terry… thank you for sharing your journey with us.  You may never know everyone you’ve helped during your fight, but I am sure there are many.  I appreciate you.

Rest in peace, bro… I finally get it.

Busy Much?

The last couple of weeks have been an absolute blur and I think my brain is fried.  It’s only been 3 weeks since I ran my last race, 2 weeks since my mother-in-law Janet went back to the UK, 1 week since AJ began summer break, and yet all events seem like forever ago.  In that time, I’ve had a huge fundraiser gala to contend with, a hubby with a hurt back (who is thankfully on the mend… see here), and I’m trying really hard to wrap my head around marathon training 6 days a week.  This will now be my life for the next 4 months… work and training.  I’ve come to the conclusion that something has to give, so I won’t be doing the cleaning, laundry, grocery shopping, cooking, etc., anymore.  Besides, I’d much rather keep in touch with my blogging friends than do all that other mindless nonsense… and now that James is healing, he can clean and do laundry and…  lol, sorry, I’m getting ahead of myself. Let me back up…

Fundraiser Gala:  One week after Janet left, the rescue and rehab center where I work held a huge fundraiser gala with dinner, entertainment, and a silent auction.  The director and I were working like mad the week before to get everything together for the event, and now I’m still quite busy tracking donors and silent auction winners and all the stuff that follows an event such as this.  No matter… we had a great time, and I’m happy to say it was a great success.

This was actually supposed to be an adults-only evening, but I was able to sneak AJ in to watch the raptor presentation.  He hung out in our room afterwards for the rest of the night.

All the tables were decorated with cute little stuffed animals that anyone could adopt (raccoons, opossums, coyotes, owls, eagles, squirrels, etc.).  They even came with their own adoption certificates.  Below are the two we adopted.  All of them were dressed up with little tulle “bow ties” for their gala evening.

Below is a video that was made in 2015.  Back then, we needed help with refurbishing the hospital area.  We were able to raise all the funds for that; however we are now in need of new eagle flights.  While the video that was shown last Saturday night is not available publicly yet, I thought you might enjoy seeing where I spend a lot of my days.  When the other video becomes available, I’ll show that one to you as well, then you can see the difference in the hospital… a little inside look of a rescue center, so to speak.  (By the way… the raccoons at the beginning really are just hanging upside down.  They were babies when they came to us and learned how to climb the chain links… all were happily released back into the wild).

Training:  Yeah, I’ve been doing that too.  I’ve had to start getting up before the sun to avoid the heat and mugginess of the season, but we all do what we gotta do.  I’m just thankful I don’t have mom duties first thing anymore (you know… making lunches, giving rides, and the biggie of waking up a child).  I won’t go much into detail about the runs right now (only because this post is getting too long), but I am hitting them as scheduled… not so much on the cross training yet… but the runs are extremely important. You can’t fake your way through a marathon if you want to beat the sweeper, haha.

Up next:  Queen with Adam Lambert!  This Saturday!  I cannot wait!

Have a great week, my friends!