Thursday, September 29, 2011

Charity Case and Things I Hate Thursday

Question for you this fine Thursday morning...

What is the charity YOU love to support? 

My husband and I prefer to make a couple of larger (ha, as in one-income-two-kids-in-diapers large) gifts at the end of the year instead of doing the $20 here and $20 there thing throughout the year.  I am having a lot of trouble deciding which charity to support - there are so many great ones, and a lot of mediocre ones too.  We usually support St. Jude's, MS Research, and our local humane association, but I really want to hear what is close to your heart.

So out with it, if you had one million dollars, and you had to give it all to one or two charities, who would you choose?

And now....

I usually don't talk about my traffic beefs on here because I have so many of them, and we all complain about idiot drivers, but I have seen this issue so many times over the past few days - it's like a sign from the traffic gods to put it on my blog.

OK.  Picture this.  You're driving along and the car in front of you kindly puts on his turn signal to make a right turn.  You move to the left to go around him, when suddenly, he swerves wildly to the left before swinging into his hard right turn.


Listen buddy, it's not like swinging first to the left and then turning to the right is going to launch you at hypersonic speed into your 25 mph turn... Oh you go you big fast driver you.  Why don't you go home, park your ass in your easy chair, get out the Budweiser and Slim Jims, spark up a Marb Red, flip on NASCAR, and pretend you're the one in the jumpsuit going fast and turning left.

Or maybe I've got this one wrong.  Maybe it's not the race car driver wannabes (even though I see this phenomenon primarily with tooth-challenged hairy men in big red pickup trucks with the race car numbers and the stupid cartoon pee-on (ex-wife, Chevy-Ford-Dodge, liberals) on the back. 

Maybe it's the Star Wars generation.  Maybe they really do think there is some sort of gravitational slingshot phenomenon whereby the relative motion of the vehicle is accelerated in some variety of orbital angular momentum.  If that's the case, he's a drawing for the nerds to clear up that misconception:

Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Lets talk about bones, baby...

Let's talk about you and me.  Your family/coworkers can thank me when you're dancing around singing that to yourself later.

I can't believe I neglected to mention this until now, but I got a call back from my doctor on my hormone levels and DEXA scan....
My busted femur. 

All normal!  I cannot begin to express how relieved I am that my bones are healthy.  Bone health is something I have absolutely taken for granted, and had I not suffered my femoral stress fracture I never would have given it a second thought.

I have many risk factors for poor bone health:  low calcium in diet (lactose intolerant), history of eating disorder, former smoker, low body weight, being female, and irregular periods.  I am so lucky to have been given this second chance to make changes to improve my chances at having strong bones for life.   All of you runners should google this phrase. "female athlete triad".  Just do it. 

And read this, it's scary:

 "Peak bone mass is the point when you have the greatest amount of bone you will ever have. Peak bone mass usually happens between the ages of 18 and 25. By age 18, bone density is nearly complete. Young adults may continue to gain a small amount of additional bone until about age 25.
Having higher peak bone mass means that you are less likely to break a bone or to get osteoporosis later in life. On the other hand, having lower peak bone mass increases your chance of getting osteoporosis. This is because women with low peak bone mass have low bone density. All women lose bone density after menopause and later in life. For women who start with lower peak bone mass, this age-related bone loss is more likely to lead to osteoporosis." (source: National Osteoporosis Foundation)

If you enter into the bone-mass-declining years (my bad for the gratuitous use of hyphen) at a defecit, you ARE NEVER GOING TO REGAIN THAT BONE MASS.  That is scary.  Like Halloween scary.

Actually, here's a scarier picture for you.  Because of all of the Fosamax and Boniva commercials showing pretty old ladies smiling blithely as they pluck cucumbers from their gardens, I guess I have been conditioned to think of osteoporosis as a relatively benign condition that happens to a lot of ladies.  WRONG!  This shit is SERIOUS.  Look at this picture, and imagine it's your bones.

Pretty horrific, right?

And because I'm self-important enough to author a blog all about yours truly, let's get to the really important question -  what does all of this mean for me?   ha.

I'm now taking supplements.  I shoot for 1,200 mg calcium, 2,000 IU Vitamin D, and 500mg magnesium.  I drink fortified OJ and lots of dark chocolate almond milk (pretty sure the dark chocolate part is what helps), am back to weightlifting regularly, and making sure my weight is conducive to healthy periods. 

It also means I can start thinking about rehabbing from my injury... and I can talk about RUNNING again!  This is a running blog, remember?

Monday, September 26, 2011

Laughing Gas Makes You Creepy

Happy Monday! 

Hope everyone had a great weekend - I spent the majority of mine in my bed, recovering from having four impacted wisdom teeth removed. 

In the days leading up to the procedure (which I have put off for nine.. yes, NINE years) I had somehow convinced myself that it was going to be a piece of cake.  I spoke to friends who had their wisdom teeth out and was reassured by the casual waves of their hands and the "no big deal" phraseology that peppered the conversations.   I have a fairly high pain tolerance and was ready to spend a whole day on the couch watching trashy TV while my dear husband cared for our little monsters.

Things did not exactly go as planned.  I've had my butt parked on the easy chair moaning for about three days... and I haven't eaten anything more than a bit of pudding and almond milk since Thursday.  My hubs is back to work today, so hopefully I will be able to manage with the kids all day. 

Surgery went fine, and the doctor's office experience was not unpleasant at all.  Might have been something to do with the nitrous oxide they gave me...  which leads into another....

Awkward Sexual Remark at the Doctor's Office

Seriously, is it bad I actually have to tag these on my blog because I have so many examples of my inappropriate comments?  If you missed it, here is a whole post on my inappropriateness.  Maybe I should make this a regular feature.

Anyway, the surgeon started feeling around my inner elbow to check out my veins.  A little background here - my husband was a phlebotomist (draws blood for a living), so I always pay extra attention when I get my blood drawn. 

Surgeon:  Hey, looks like you brought your veins to the party!  Usually my female patients don't have veins like that.

Kim: (would be mildly offended if not sedated) Yeah, my husband said I have good veins.  He's into that.

Surgeon:  So is that how your husband was attracted to you, your veins? (weird look)

Kim:  Well, he's a phlebotomist, you know, he draws blood?  (starting to feel the gas... a lot) Yeah, that's what does it for him I guess... we'll all be making out, and then he'll start caressing my inner elbows... it's pretty weird.

For some reason, he chose just that moment to knock me out.  Huh.  Can't believe he didn't want to hear more about my gross made-up foreplay.

So there you have it... if you ever have to get laughing gas, be forewarned that when you think you're being funny, you're not.  You're just being creepy.

Apparently beer and nitrous oxide have similar characteristics...

Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Five Confessions of a Bad Parent

Good morning!  Let's skip my usual generic preamble today and dive right in to the public display of the highlights of my more questionable parental adventures:

#1.  I taught my kids to say "Yay Momma!" and clap just to give me an ego boost.  Now if I feel like I need a little applause for say, loading the dishwasher or brushing my hair in the morning, I gather the kids around and they cheer for me.  It's great.

#2. Two words.  Baby Rodeo. 



#3  In the early months, I often did not know which baby I was nursing when I stumbled into their room for the third...fourth...fifth time every night.  I'd squint and try to figure it out, and then I'd give up because it didn't really matter.  In my defense, they looked reallllly alike.

#4  I used to put my hands on either side of my giant twin baby belly and jiggle it around, while simultaneously yelling "SHAKEN BABIES!!!" just to get a rise out of my husband and mom.

Bad Momma.

#5  I made this into a coffee mug for my husband for Father's Day:



Whew.  I feel better getting those off my chest.

Have a super Wednesday!

Monday, September 19, 2011

The Best Race Sign Ever.

Happy Monday!

I had the fantastic experience of spectating for the Fox Cities Festival of Races, and it was by far the most moving experience I've had since joining the crazy running community I love so much.

Since my femur is still on the mend, I was relegated to the spectator spot in our group of racers, and let me tell you - I had a perfectly executed spectator plan - for sure a spectator PR for me! :)

The race starts in Menasha, and winds through six different cities/towns in the Fox Valley in Northeast Wisconsin, and it was my goal to see Rachel (running her FIRST marathon) as many times as possible, and also to cheer for my half marathoner buds.

The morning of the race, I threw a big sheet of posterboard and some Sharpies in the van as an afterthought.  I ended up having a few minutes waiting for the race to come by and I sloppily crafted a sign:

"Someday you will not be able to do this.  Today is not that day!"
Disclaimer:  Before you nominate me for a Pulitzer for my inspirational prose, let me be clear that I definitely stole this sign idea from a spectator at the Chicago Rock 'n Roll Half Marathon, and is no way an original idea.

Rachel's husband and I headed off to the first spot - about five miles in.  While we waited for Rachel, I held up my sign and cheered for all of the runners.  We were at a pretty lonely spot in the course, so almost every runner that went by read my sign and gave me a thumbs up or a little laugh.  One girl ran by with a rainbow headband and said "Today is NOT that day!"  Rachel ran by looking great, and we packed up and headed to the ten mile marker. 

At 10, I held up my sign, and immediately started noticing all of the same people I cheered for at 5.  I got a lot of, "Haven't we seen you before?", and "I love that sign!". and three runners stopped to take my picture, as well as one of the race photographers and a local news guy.  I felt pretty famous.  :)  Soon, Rainbow Headband ran by and said cheerily "Still not that day!" and Rachel came by looking great.

We headed to mile 16, and once again, I saw all of "my" runners that I'd been interacting with all morning.  This time, I heard more of "You guys AGAIN?", "This is the THIRD time I've seen you!"  Rainbow Headband came by again... "Still not that day!"

We drove to mile 20, and set up camp right before a relay exchange zone, and it was great to be able to cheer for them in their finishing kick, and also for all of the runners who were mostly walking by this point.  Again, we saw all of the same runners, including Rainbow Headband who was looking pretty rough.  She said "This might be that day."   My eyes welled up and I told her that she was amazing and that she was doing this, right now.  I told her she'd be a marathoner today, and she started running slowly.  I worried about her, and Rachel, as we drove to our next spot at mile 25.

Mile 25 was incredible.  I recognized dozens of runners and was so humbled by their strength and grateful I had this unique view into their marathon journey.  One younger man ran up to me and stopped and said "Your sign got me through this", and burst into tears.  I danced to the techno music from a nearby DJ, and tried to call each of "my" runners out and tell them how far they had come, and how incredible they were.  I really focused on giving them a little energy to make their last mile a little brighter. 

Runner after runner after runner stopped and told me what the sign meant to them, many of them crying.  I got more sweaty runner hugs and tearful high fives, and it was the most moving thing I've had the privilege of being a part of. 

Minutes turned into a half hour... forty five minutes, and there was still no sign of Rachel or Rainbow Headband.  I took a break from my dancing and set my sign down, and then I saw her, incredibly, still running.  She and her friend danced a bit to the music and she said triumphantly, "Today is NOT that day!"  She was happy and dry-eyed, and I was happy and misty-eyed.  I've never been so proud of a complete stranger. 

After we saw Rachel pass by, we hurried to the finish line.  I was glad I had my sunglasses on as I was holding back tears as I watched all of my runners come into view headed down the final stretch.  Men and women, young and old, groups and solo runners, maniacs and first timers... they all had the same look on their face.  The mixture of pain, pride, joy, and relief was so deeply moving. 

We runners are so lucky to be able to be a part of such a beautiful community, and to help each other through some of the hardest and most wonderful hours of our lives. 

Friday, September 16, 2011

More List.

’Cause from the start to the end, no matter what I pretend
The journey is more important than the end or the start
And what it meant to me will eventually be a memory of a time when I tried so hard
-- Linkin Park

This was originally meant to be a two part post - 20 goals.  Apparently, I have a lot more secret ambitions than I thought because now my list has morphed into 30, so this is Part II of III.  
  • Run the New York City Marathon.
    • This is just something I've dreamed of since the first time I heard about it.  I'm just going to start putting my name in the lottery every year, starting with 2012, until I get in.  Can you IMAGINE running through the streets of NYC?  Gives me chills just thinking about it. 
  • Take a guitar lesson.
    • You'd think this one would come before embarrassing myself showing my talents on Youtube, but  guitar lessons aren't free whereas public humiliation usually is.
  • Water ski, and successfully drop a ski.
    • I used to ski every year, but suddenly got scared of it, and I'm ready to tackle something I never successfully attempted - dropping a ski.
  • Join an adult soccer rec league.
    • I love soccer and played for twelve years.  I'd love to join a rec league, but I've always talked myself out of it because I think I'm too out of practice. 
  • Spend a whole afternoon alone with Nolan.
    • Yeah, I realize this makes me sound like a bad mom, but my twins are 18 months, and we've never really separated them.  I want to have one baby at a time so I can focus only on them, and maybe a tiny bit of me wants to see what life as a singleton mom would be like.
  • Spend a whole afternoon alone with Alex.
    • See above.
  • Take the kids on an overnight trip to a hotel.
    • Mamas, am I crazy on this one?
  • Learn how to swim properly.
    • I'm super comfortable in the water, but look like a hippo having a seizure when I try to do any specific stroke.  Do they even have adult swimming lessons?
  • Take steps to conquer my fear of public speaking.
    • Ha, this is the worst one on the list.  I am petrified of speaking in public.  Which is hilarious because I'm a wedding officiant.  I don't want to talk about this one anymore.  :)
  • Swim from Clear Water Harbor to my cottage.
    • It's something my Dad did once and I've always wanted to attempt it.  It's about 1.5 miles through three lakes from our favorite restaurant to our cottage.
There you have it!  Still no DEXA results, but I'm feeling a lot better.  No pain when I walk!  Yeah femur!

So excited to spectate at the Fox Cities Marathon this weekend!  Just wait til you see my awesome sign...

    Wednesday, September 14, 2011

    The List

    Here it is, Part I of my list of goals. 

    1. Get a double scoop of ice cream.
      • You know, in all of my 27 years on this earth, I've never gotten a double scoop ice cream, and I always imagine all of the different flavor possibilities partying in my mouth.  Dream big! 
    2. Post video of my own acoustic guitar cover on Youtube.
      • I've been teaching myself guitar since April of this year, and I'd like to join the Youtube community that has been so instrumental (haha, get it? Instrumental?) in helping me learn by posting one of my own videos.  This is one of the very scariest goals on this list.
    3. Run a 5k in under 23 minutes.
      • Current PR is 23:17.
    4. Run a marathon.
      • Possibly the Fox Cities Marathon in September next year.
    5. Run a marathon faster than Oprah.
      • Can someone tell me how this woman ran sub-4:30?
    6. Run a half marathon in under 1:50.
      • Current PR 1:59. 
    7. Run a 10k in under 50 minutes.
      • Current PR 50:xx. 
    8. Write a post on grief.
      • I have had the life-changing experience of suffering tremendous grief this past year, and I feel like it's one of those things people just don't talk about.  Perhaps we can all gain something - empathy, solace, knowledge.. something by talking about it.
    9. Ski out west.
      • I love downhill skiing, but have only skied in the Midwest.  My mom used to ski in Colorado, and I've always dreamed of taking a trip out west to commune with the mountains.
    10. Bake perfect sandwich bread from scratch.
      • I cook almost everything from scratch and I'm a little ashamed to admit I can't make bread.  Every time I buy bread at the grocery store I yell at myself a bit for not being able to make it myself. 
    I'll conclude this deep post with some more deep thoughts.... from Jack Handey.

    To me, truth is not some vague, foggy
    notion. Truth is real. And, at the
    same time, unreal. Fiction and fact and
    everything in between, plus some things
    I can't remember, all rolled into one
    big "thing." This is truth to me.
    --Jack Handey

    If a kid asks where rain comes from,
     I think a cute thing to tell him is
     'God is crying'.  And if he asks why
    God is crying, another cute thing to tell
     him is 'Probably because of something
     you did.'
    --Jack Handey

    Tuesday, September 13, 2011

    Gotta Have Goals

    Good morning!

    Whew - can't believe I didn't lose any followers with yesterday's short-on-taste post!  What can I say?  I am surrounded by boys and think bodily functions and gross plays on words are hilarious.  :)

    I am not a super goal-oriented person.  I frequently describe myself as "content", and I'm pretty happy just going with the flow. 

    Recently, I've noticed fear has been holding me back from a lot of things I'd secretly like to do. 

    I will conquer my fears!  (or break my leg!  (again.))

    So, what's a girl to do but make a list?  I've been compiling all of the things I'd like to do - some are silly and frivolous, some are running-related, some are just things I need to take the time to make a priority. 

    And some are terrifying.  For me, anyway.

    So over the next couple of days, I'm going to be listing my goals my blog - for a little accountability, maybe a little feedback, but mostly just to declare to myself I'm going to start pushing myself outside of my comfort zone.  Maybe I'll learn something about myself in the process.

    Then I think I'll create a page on here with the completed list, and go to town on these bad boys!

    “You can gain strength, courage and confidence by every experience in which you really stop to look fear in the face. You are able to say to yourself, ‘I lived through this horror. I can take the next thing that comes along’… You must do the thing you cannot do.”
    – Eleanor Roosevelt

    Monday, September 12, 2011

    One more reason to love Ben & Jerry's...

    Did you guys see this?  Made my morning!

    schweddy balls ice cream from ben and jerrys
    Ben & Jerry's newest flavor... Schweddy Balls.

    I am so glad someone is finally paying tribute to one of the most often quoted (in my house anyway)SNL skits... Schweddy Balls. 

    Go ahead, Youtube it.  It's super funny (if you're not easily offended and have a sophomoric sense of humor like me)....  I dare you to keep a straight face while Alec Baldwin says "No one can resist my Schweddy Balls."

    The ice cream actually sounds pretty gross (malted milk balls, YUCK) but I appreciate the effort from B & Js. 

    Super nice reading about everyone's long runs this weekend - can't wait to be back out there.  Unfortunately, I have a very, very long wait - more on that later.

    Still no results for my DEXA scan, but hoping I hear today. 

    Have a great Monday!

    Thursday, September 8, 2011

    Sorry Weirdos.

    Hey, good morning,

    Have to make this one quick as I'm off to my big DEXA scan and meeting with the orthopaedic duder.  Pretty nervous.  I wasn't actually that nervous until my doctor said:

    "You do not want to have osteoporosis at 27."

    I concur.  I would very much like to not have osteoporosis, so I'm going to be extra nice to the scan guy and not say ANYTHING dirty in hopes that he gives me good news.

    Also, just a quick note to the weirdos out there that found my blog through this:

    Uhhh, "double pee whizzing"?  Not sure what you were looking for... pretty sure you're not finding it here.  Or maybe you are.  If so, welcome.  Weirdo.

    Also, a note to the one who came here looking for information on "inappropriate doctor", perhaps you should consider involving the authorities.

    OK then, glad we got that cleared up.

    Wednesday, September 7, 2011

    Double Your Pleasure... Double Your... Pee.

    So, I took my kids' diapers off yesterday to let them have a little naked time... 

    Nolan immediately starts running.... and pooping.  Seriously, the kid dropped three turds on the kitchen floor before I even had Alex's diaper off.  It was impressive.

    While I rushed to clean up the baby nuggets, Alex sprinted to the screen door, put his hands up above his head on the screen, leaned forward, and started whizzing. 

    Nolan immediately recognized the awesome potential of a little brotherly pee session, so he sidled up hip-to-hip with Alex and let loose with a stream of his own. 

    Seriously guys, I can't make this stuff up.

    Yup, that's twin trails of baby pee on the screen, and yep, I just put a picture of urine on my blog.  Entering a whole new level here guys.

    Oh but they're so cute, aren't they?  :) 

    Tuesday, September 6, 2011

    Happy Anniversary... to me!

    Good morning!

    Hope you all had a spectacular Labor Day...

    Labor Day was extra special for me this year because everyone got off of work to celebrate my third anniversary! 

    Now here is the obligatory wedding picture overload:

    The Chief Waupaca, where I tied the knot!

    My divorced parents forced together by the photographer... haha.

    Me and Rachel being inappropriate.

    Daddy giving me away to my handsome husband.

    My momma marrying us!

    Yay marriage!

    Naked bride.  :)



    Back to regularly scheduled femur complaints tomorrow...

    Thursday, September 1, 2011

    Holding Pattern and Things I Hate Thursday!

    Happy Thursday to all of you fine folks,

    Kind of stuck in a holding pattern over here.

    I'm not allowed to do any cross-training until I get some test results back to rule out the nastier of the many things that could be contributing to the ol stress fractures.  Hoping to hear something today.

    I'm super excited for next week because I meet with the orthopaedic doc (oh Greek spelling, you think you're so fancy...) and then I will have some idea of a recovery plan!

    My sweet and wonderful husband is encouraging me to get a membership at the Y, which is OUTRAGEOUSLY expensive.  Seriously... it's like 35 bucks MORE a month than my current gym membership.  Then I'll be able to float around in the pool and say I'm cross training and use all of their fancy equipment.

    This one's a big one for me.

    I don't know if you all use recipe sites to find new recipes, but I do, and it's awesome.

    I LOVE because of the rating system and all of the user reviews that are submitted for each recipe.

    What's to hate?  Ahhh, let me tell you.

    When someone gives an awesome recipe like 2 of 5 stars, and then they write a big long review:

    "I did the recipe exactly as written, except I substituted the fresh garlic for garlic salt, and I didn't have any potatoes, so I left those out, I also didn't have any green peppers or onions, and I used water instead of milk.  Just didn't turn out for me!"


    And here's my personal favorite, which I swear appears on almost every single recipe on the site.

    "I'll give it 2 stars.   I followed the directions exactly, except I left out all of the salt to make it healthier.  I don't know, I just feel like something was missing..."


    Serenity now.
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