Monday, December 29, 2008

Time to Reflect

Generally, I avoid the "New Years Eve Resolution" silliness. For me, these types of life changing commitments tend to happen around my birthday. I believe I will continue with that tradition for myself, as it seems to have the most meaning for me.
However, I do like to take some time at the end of the year to reflect a little. It's sort of a "thanksgiving" for me.

As I look back at 2008, I realize how many special events occurred in my life. Here are some of the highlights:
  • Shayna graduated from High school in the top 10% of her class. No small feet since her class had over 400 students.
  • Shayna was accepted into every college she applied to, and we supported her with her decision to attend SUNY New Paltz.
  • I took my oldest child to college, and left her there to start the next phase of her life.
  • Jack has grown into a preschooler, who is healthy and happy.
  • Kenz started Kindergarten. We've watched her make the adjustments and transition from daycare to school, with the same enthusiasm she tackles all of life.
  • I left one job, and started another in June. It was a challenging transition for me.
  • I bought my first bicycle since I was a kid, and fell in love with the fun of riding again.
  • I entered a Sprint distance Triathlon.
  • I trained diligently for the tri, pushing my body and mind to new fitness levels with brick and double workouts.
  • Even though the official tri was cancelled due to a Hurricane, Kevin and I persevered and ran our own race. With the support of the kids, we completed the first annual "Home Tri" as we affectionately named it.
  • We had a great visit from my sister (pennycandy) and her family in July.
  • We were able to take a family vacation to the Cape with friends again this past summer.
  • We enjoyed good health and friendships throughout the year.

So, here's to another great year! I'm looking forward to the exciting things that will happen in my personal life, and the world around me.

Friday, December 19, 2008

Another Fine Mess..

As my friend Peter would have said when we were little, "This is another fine mess I've gotten myself into." And, just like back then, I'm so excited to be in this mess!

I joined a training group on

There are 10 people in my group, and I believe I'm about to get my butt kicked into shape!

I am a total newbie when it comes to training, and really don't know what the heck I'm doing most of the time. So, I'm really psyched to learn every thing I can from this group.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008

If Children Ruled the World...

This is a story that my oldest just shared with me:

"Mac and I were up in my bed watching TV (probs pbs kids) and one of those "donate money to the kids in Africa" came on. So I started to change the channel, but Mac freaked out on me and said "No Shayna! I wanna watch it!" So I warned her that it was pretty sad... and flipped it back...As soon as the commercial was over, she side hit me... like w/ the back of her hand and I looked at her. She had THE BIGGEST EYES bulging out and she goes "CALL shayna!!!" like I was mentally insane for not picking up my cell asap. And so I explained to her that it was really expensive... and she goes... "Well... would they send that little boy to us?"

This really struck a chord with me. I'm proud of her for her strong desire to help others, but I don't think her reaction is all that unique. It seems that most children have an overwhelming sense of wanting to make the world a better place. When they see poverty and pain, they seem to have a basic need to fix it.

And I wonder, when do we become so cold and distant from the pain of other human beings?

If children ran the world, I bet there would be no hunger. Every one would have warm clothing. Every one would have a bed to sleep in and clean water to drink. And, I'd be willing to bet that every child would be guarenteed a loving parent or parents, with lots of hugs and laughter.

Oh yeah, and if Mackenzie ruled the world, every kid would get a chance to play basketball and stay up all night eating cookies!!

Friday, December 12, 2008

Gender Analysis

A couple of weeks ago , Spokane Al posted this link:

They are 72% certain that I am a female! Good to know I don't meet all the stereotypes!

What do they say about you?

Tuesday, December 9, 2008

A Little Piece of History

December 26th is my Grandmothers birthday. She was an awesome lady. She had 9 children, and worked hard her whole life. I don't have many photos of her, so this one is precious. Shayna recently found it and forwarded it to me.

The people in the picture are Me, my Mom, and Grandma Jennie holding baby Shayna!

So this is when I will ask anyone who knew Grandma Jennie (as Shayna Jennie called her), to share some memories of her.

Here is a very short one of mine, but since I love food, it's a good one: She made the best fried chicken ever! And, I developed my love of the chicken skin from her! The memory of her chicken is almost enough to make me think about eating meat again. (not really)

Thursday, December 4, 2008

Reason #353 for why I love my Parents

A few weeks ago we celebrated my Mom's birthday. She assures me that she turned 58 this year. Mackenzie made her a birthday hat for the celebration! It was a grand example of the masterful work of a five year old.

Here is the birthday girl in her beautiful crown!

My dad has a reputation for being a bit...cantankerous. He actually is a little proud that this word has been used to describe him in the past. But I'm here to dispell that myth, with solid evidence that he is really a loving and silly Grand father...

There aren't many grandparents who would happily wear this hat, and allow pictures to be taken, and take the time to read to their grandchildren while wearing the silly thing!

It's just another reason to love them and be eternally grateful that they are here and healthy.


Tuesday, December 2, 2008

Christmas Came Early!

Winter here in Upstate New York has arrived. It's not too cold or snowy (yet), but it's dark until after 7AM and by 4:15PM! So, I was already starting to go a bit stir crazy!

One of the things I've learned about exercise is that the more I get, the more I want. This is a problem when it's dark out for all of my free hours every day!

So, what's a girl to do? The only option was to convince my dear husband that a CycleOps fluid trainer is a great investment! My trusty Craigs List link, actually made this a fairly easy task. Last weekend we picked up a fluid trainer and all the niceties for a very sweet price.

One of the great things about this, is that I am thinking about cutting way back on my running for the winter. It's too dark, and I get hurt way to easy when I try to run in the dark. And, I am one of those people who can not use the treadmill! I'm the crazy lady at the gym who goes flying off of it every time I try to go faster than a slug!

And for those who were hoping I might come to my senses and give up the Triathlon obsessiveness, I assure you that the bike trainer allows me to continue training through the winter!

Bike on the trainer! Swim at the Y! And now, I've added Pilates for some badly needed core strengthening!

Look out 2009 race season!