Crafty Tuesday

Oh. I’m thinking we have to rename today’s post Triathlon Tuesday. I haven’t done one crafty thing since we had company last week, and then the race over the weekend. Next week. Next week I promise lots of crafty stuff. I have even set Thursday and big chunks of the upcoming weekend aside for sewing my many piles of projects.

So, I promised more details and photos of our weekend. Let me try to get that crossed off of my list today right now.

Well, we started the weekend on a later ferry over to Catalina, thanks to my short-sightedness in reserving a spot for our bikes. Yeah, the bikes need a reservation, too. Lesson learned.

So we did not get to the island until after 8pm. By the time we had a quick dinner, saw everyone and made it back to our villa it was plenty late. Add to that a very long week and an Addie who didn’t cooperate with a very restless night, and we started our Saturday morning off a little tired at 6am.

A few short hours later we had numbers, all of our gear set up, body markings, and peeled on some wetsuits – that leave um, nothing to the imagination. We were ready for the race.


Addie was very skeptical and didn’t want to give me a good luck kiss. I think she didn’t really recognize me in the seal suit, swimcap and goggles.

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Daddy got some love, though.


We were in the very last wave, so we watched everyone else set off and then it was our turn to jump in and try to catch them.

And this would be the point that yours truly completely freaked out, panicked and nearly drowned. Ok, maybe I didn’t nearly drown, I am a decent swimmer but I am a little claustrophobic. Which I know, sounds completely bizarre – the big, blue ocean is anything but a small, confined space – but every time J. and I dive I get that panicked feeling. It is the same feeling I used to get when I’d wake up in the top bunk of the motorhome, or that one time when I was trapped in the elevator, maybe it isn’t claustrophobia, but it is something. When I’m diving I need to hang out on top, settle down, calm the panicky feeling, and get my breathing down before I can go under.

Apparently, I need to do the same thing when I am in an ocean swim. I kinda freaked out. Plus there are arms and legs flying all over, I couldn’t catch my breath and for a minute I thought, “I just can’t do this.”


Before our turn, when we were standing on the shore watching the swimmers before us, J. had said, “Look! There are some people who are just doing the backstroke and they are only like 25 meters off the shore.”

Yeah. About 10 minutes later…that was me. I finally just flipped over on my back, concentrated on the backstroke, calmed myself down, got my breathing under control and settled down. Eventually, I flipped over and did some swimming, but oh it was a long, long swim. I was pretty surprised later to find out that my swim split was 21 minutes, because it felt like at least double that.

I was never so happy to be on dry land. And the welcome back/good luck kiss was helpful in getting me focused back up…


…for the bike. Oh, the bike. I am also a decent biker, so I wasn’t that concerned about the bike leg. Except, well, Catalina is kind of mountainous. The course was one loop that we did three times. So I started out and all was well until I hit the first half of the loop, which is pretty much all uphill. And just when I thought, “this has to be the turn around point, the top of the hill,” there was more hill. When I finally did reach the top I found J. there with his throbbing knee and he had his “I don’t think I can do this” moment. I convinced him that he could do it and told him, “It is all downhill from here…you can do this.” (Of course I was thinking in my head, “um…yeah, we go down now and only have to do it all over 2 more times.)


But we did it. And moved along to the run which featured, go figure…more hills! A hill they like to refer to as “suicide hill.” Yes. When you stand at the bottom and look up, you can’t really even see the top of the hill. And we got to do the run loop twice. So we did the hill. Twice. And on the second time around I was asking myself “why exactly are we doing this?”

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But look how awesome J. looked crossing the finish line! (I’m there cheering him on in the back if you look really hard. Yes, I waited for him after the bike and for most of the run, but I wanted to make sure I did it under 2 hours…so I did run ahead a bit when I knew he was going to finish. And I didn’t even need to – we both made under with plenty of time to spare.)


About 15 minutes after the race I began plotting for next year’s race. And, he hasn’t said “no” yet. Of course, he also hasn’t said “yes.”


I do think we had the best cheering section around.


And the island is really, really beautiful. It made a pretty backdrop to all of our pain. (That would be the pier we swam around.)


We tried to hang out after the race and soak up some sun and family time, but…well, we were kind of wiped out.


So we crashed back out at the villa for the evening.


Our place came with the girl’s favorite part of the weekend – our own golf cart to tool around the island in.


And Mommy’s favorite part of the weekend, the sunrise from our balcony the next morning after the extra hour of sleep. (Thank you very much time change.)


Kinda looks like a Mediterranean village, huh? Note to self: next time try to rent villa that is not 87 steps up off the main street. (No elevators!)
We did manage a family shot (sort of – Addie??!!) when a kind gentleman took pity on us on the beach Sunday morning.


All in all, it was a successful weekend all around, I think.


And I can’t wait to put it on the calendar for next year. Anyone in?

We did it!

Hardest triathlon (by far!) to date for me. First triathlon for J. But we squeaked in under the two hour mark. Can you see the relief on our faces?


It was very awesome to race together. And I am SO very proud of him. He rocked it for his first race even with a bum knee and everything. I really hope it didn’t scare him off of racing, because I’d kind of like to kill our time on the next one. (And redeem myself on the swim leg.)

I’ll try to get the full race report up with more photos tomorrow…

Tired Triathletes

Just in case you are following along at home and not a facebook friend. We did finish the triathlon yesterday! My friend B. finished her first and did awesome, I’m so very proud of her. I haven’t talked with her to see if she was sore yet today, but she agreed we should look for another one soon, so I don’t think she was too traumatized.

I was 10 seconds faster than last year. Ha! Finishing time of 1:27:21. I felt really good though, and probably could have pushed it a little bit harder and beat that by a lot more. The running! Wow. If you ever want to feel really fast, just train pushing a 20lb. stroller with a 35lb. 4-year old, (add an additional 5-6lbs. for all of the “stuff” she needs to bring) and then run a race without all of that! It is amazing the difference. I was faster on my bike leg too…my official timekeeper (Jamie) noted that when I got out of the pool. You were like 3 minutes faster on the bike! But they switched the transition areas and there was a longer run between the bike and pool (the 2nd transition) and after running and biking…that short little run (barefoot, over sticks and stuff, in your bathing suit, good times!) it is torture. That transition time I lost all I had made up on my run and bike.

Nonetheless, another tri down. I feel very good about it. Thanks to J. and the girls for making it up at a crazy early hour to come see me race. Jamie forgot my camera but I realized I wore the exact same outfit yesterday that I did here, here, and here. So you can pretty much look at those pics and imagine being there with us. Except no little pigtails this year – just my lucky, bright green hat!

Why it is fun to try a tri…

Triathlons bring out all kinds. All shapes and sizes, and all ages. They write your age on your right calf before the race, I’m not exactly sure why, but I believe it is to teach you humility as a 60+ year old goes flying by you halfway through the race.

Somewhere in the middle

Anyhow, I do love the Nike tag inside my hat that says, “If you have a body, you are an athlete.” The oldest person to complete our triathlon was 79 years old. Can you believe that? I hope I am still walking at 79…much less swimming-biking-running!

Emma and I had a little discussion when we were going to pick up my race number on Friday.

E: “Mama? How old do you have to be to run a triathlon race?”
M: “I don’t know, Peanut. I’d guess 14 or so.
(I hear nothing from the backseat and then whispered…)
E: “Eleven, twelve, thirteen, fourteen.”
E: “Oh! Well that means in 8 years I can run a race with you. Because it is almost like I am six already, right?
M: “Yes (smiling) I would LOVE to run a race with you. I’ll be 44 then.”
E: “Oh. When I’m 30, how old will you be?”
M: “61.”
E: “Can you run when you are 61?
M: “Um, I hope so…I guess we’ll have to see.”
E: “When I’m 60, how old will you be?”
M: “I’ll be 91.”
E: “OH! Gosh. When I’m 91?”
M: “I’ll be…uh, 122.”
E: “Um, Mama…you probably won’t be here when you are 122.”

You are probably right kid, I’ll be pretty lucky to make it to 91, I think!

We happened to find the youngest athlete on Saturday, he started next to me…

The youngest

And as for that lesson in humility…he finished only 10 minutes behind me.


I better step up my training. I’ve got four years until Em is out here beating me.

Triathlete in training

Cutest Fan Club ~ Best Shot Monday

Look at me – in a photo – two weeks in a row!

So obviously this was not my best shot for today, but a photo that J. took just before my triathlon this weekend.

I definitely had the cutest fan club at the race!

My fan club

As far as the actual race – I had a very good race, for as little as I had trained.  Last year, since it was my first tri ever, I trained so hard because I was really worried about actually finishing. This year and my training? Well, let’s just say it was usually the very last bullet point on my ever-growing to do list.

So I finished the race in 1:21, a few minutes over last year’s time. I was kind of bummed when I saw the time. Well, I was relieved that it was over, since it seemed so much harder than last year, but I had kind of hoped to get a new personal best record, and beat my time.

But, hey! I did come in 17th place (out of 45)  in my age group. And when I started thinking about how little I have worked out in the past few months – I mean I just dusted off my bike last week, for the first time since before Christmas. And, I am usually lucky to get in three runs and one spin class a week. Plus, I haven’t done a brick workout since before my last tri…last summer. (A brick workout is when you stack two workouts together, like swim/run or bike/run, etc.) So considering all of this…I think I am just happy to have finished with the time I did manage.

And, it also provided a little bit of inspiration – now I am looking for another race that I can really train for.


…we made it!

It is Friday, my friends.

This week has been a long, exhausting one, starting with losing that one hour for the very antiquated notion of daylight savings. Are there really still farmers somewhere who truly benefit from the hour shift? I think now it is just a way to screw with the already fragile little bodies of our children. Can I get an “Amen” here?

Anyhow. We are all really tired and not sleeping well. When Addie isn’t in our room proclaiming “I’m hungry, is it time to go downstairs?” at 4:30am, (And explain this to me. If we didn’t have daylight savings, it would be 3:30am, what is she doing up at that un-Godly hour??) then there is Tiger meowing at the top of her tiny, little cat lungs.

She pretty much wanders around and just meows now. Loudly. I don’t know if she is looking for Smokey, worried we are going to take her to the vet, or just taking advantage of us not locking her into the back half of the house (because we feel so guilty – she would be back there by herself!) – or maybe it is a little of all three. But, I have been awakened by her at least 4 or 5 times every night for the past 4 or 5 nights.

So, tonight? She is getting locked in. (Don’t feel too badly for her – she gets the whole playroom, kitchen, bathroom and laundry room to herself. And besides, she had her chance!)

I need some sleep. I am running the Pasadena triathlon again on Saturday. I haven’t mentioned much about it because I’ve been more than a little worried that I was not going to get to do it again this year. And I don’t feel nearly as prepared as I was last year, but at any rate…that is where we will be tomorrow morning. Trying to finish the race, hoping the adrenaline kicks in.

Providing we don’t just all sleep through the alarm.

Wishing you all a very happy weekend.

You don’t forget how, right?

I had a whole long, boring post all cued up about our long, not so boring week, but it bored me just thinking about it, so I’m sparing you the details. Here is the condensed version.

Went to ob/gyn. Had a little procedure. Passed out cold and did that little freaky seizure-y thing I do. Pretty traumatic on my body. Was puking sick all day Tuesday and Wednesday. In the midst of keeping girls happy, shuttling to school and finishing two projects. Finally back to normal. I think.

Much more succinct and a little more fun to read it that way, believe me.

Anyhow, the biggest news for the week is my new baby!


My Christmas present. My guess is it is a bit difficult to do a triathlon on a spin bike or an old mountain bike. So I am the proud new owner of a road bike.

I haven’t taken it out yet, just around our house and in the driveway. You’d think I’d be out on the road all rarin’ to go, right? Why haven’t I been?

I’m terrified of it.

Seriously. Look how skinny these tires are.


And the first time I get my shoes clipped into the pedals and forget to unclip when I stop….I’m so going to bust open my head or break a body part.

They say you never forget how to ride a bike, right?

We’ll see. We are going to test that out this weekend. But I do think it needs a name. Anybody got any good ideas?