Thursday, December 30, 2010

Secret Life of Bees & A Reliable Wife

Written in the poetic and enchanting style of Sue Monk Kidd, this book puts a spell on you... takes you to another time... another world. The story of a young girl searching for a mother, a home, and love, finds it in the midst of May, June, and August, covered in honey...

I enjoyed the journey this book took me on. I fell in love with all the characters, each one so clearly etched into the readers mind. I felt their bonds to each other, their struggles with social justice and freedom, the wounds of their hearts, and their strength through it all. It speaks to the heart, whose desire is acceptance, answers, and love.

After reading The Secrete Life of Bees and The Mermaid Chair by Kidd, I wonder about the author. There are quite a few similarities between the books... two females who leave the home they know, in search of answers, both have mother issues, and desire to discover themselves, both succeeding in the end.

I read this right after The Secret Life of Bees, and it took a bit to adjust to completely different writing styles of the authors. Kidd has a very fluid and languid poetic style, while Goolrick though still figurative, was more abrupt and segmented in is writing.

Set at the turn of the century in a Wisconsin winter, wealthy widower Mr. Truit, mourns the life he had, regrets the mistakes he's made, and tires of being lonely. Placing an ad for a wife he accepts the inquiry of Catherine who has motives all her own.

With three very strong characters wrestling with goodness and evil, selfishness and selflessness, plot twists and passion, I was not left disappointed.

Saturday, December 18, 2010

First Wrestling Tournament

Last weekend Maddox had his first wrestling tournament. I really had no idea what to expect from him. He is so competitive and plays so rough with his dad, but seems a bit timid during practices. Brian kept assuring me that as soon as he got to wrestle kids his age/size, he would get the hang of it.

As we headed to PHS, Maddox was a nervous ball of energy. He was restless and tense, complete with a nervous laugh... it was a good thing he was contained in a car seat or he would have been bouncing off the roof of the car. He stayed pretty nervous even after we arrived, but dad finally got him to loosen up by wrestling around with him on the mats for warm up.

Watching his first match was probably one of my favorite mother-son moments so far. He smile the whole time and listened to his dad and coach so well. A stranger even commented "He sure knows his mom is watching him!" It didn't take long for Maddox to put to use the moves he had been learning the past few weeks at practice. He scored quite a few points, and in the end pinned his opponent. Not too bad for his first match!

And just as dad had predicted, he was hooked!

He lost his second match to his team mate and friend Cole, then won his third match against the first guy he pinned, and ended up with 2nd place.

On the way home we asked him if he wanted to wrestle in one more tournament this year, and he said "No.... I want to wrestle in ALL of them." He talked non-stop for at least the next week about the tournament and his first pin.

Learned: This is the official beginning to my new job...being my son's biggest fan.

Sunday, December 5, 2010

Winter Sun 10K 2010

Saturday a group of girlfriends and I headed to Moab to run the Winter Sun 10K.
Lisa, me, Jan, and Anne (missing Ari and my mom who couldn't come, and Christie who came but wasn't there for our picture)

Our sole purpose for running this race was to get the guaranteed entry to the Canyonland Half Marathon in March. If your are the first 100 to register you get a secret code to use in the "bat cave" secret registration website. Ari was hurt and didn't want to show up and, being so competitive, end up running anyway; so we picked up her swag and assumed that we would get her secret code....but they took it away saying if you don't run it you don't get it...that caused us all to wait around for the entire prize give aways in hopes of winning a guaranteed entry for her... but we are all unlucky in the door prize department...

Despite our downtrodden luck, we did not walk away empty handed.... Jan won 3rd place in her age group with a time of 43:50, and her friend Jodie, also won 3rd place in her age division. I of course cheered overly obnoxiously (as promised if she won) and embarrassed Jan pretty good...

This run is billed as an ALL downhill course... and that is mostly true except for one pretty long and pretty steep up hill section. I run serpents all summer long and compared to that this hill was just a speed bump, so I know my struggle was not for lack of physical ability. I mean when you are in down hill mode for 2 plus miles then are hit with this monster it does something to you mentally. I really thought I was going to puke and it was only mile 2... but thankfully I recovered quickly and was able to pick up my pace again. It really felt like the miles were flying by and before I knew it I was running into the high school stadium and around the track to the finish. I ran my personal best 10K time ever,
6.2 miles in 52:55!

That's an average of... 8:30's with my best pace being 5:50 (I am sure that pace was held for all of 2 seconds).

So I couldn't be happier with the results.

Through all of the preparation (or lack of) for this run, I had an epiphany... a 10K is not enough motivation to keep me running regularly. I ran sporadically for the weeks prior, and no longer than 4 miles. And I had no anxiety or doubt about my ability to finish the 10K. I remember several years ago when I was training for the BOULDERboulder (10K) and ran 5 times a week, all in an effort to build up to 6 miles. That was the longest distance I could imagine myself running.

This is now my motivational distance...(Thanks Anne for the motivational magnet)

I think that says a lot about my progress as a runner.