Monday, April 25, 2016

*Monday Memos*

*MONDAY MEMOS*

   
 (If pictures are too small, just click to enlarge) 
Weekly recap of my rather crazy, insane, but fun and rewarding life!

dear boston marathon!  After I ran 7 miles on Monday morning, I rushed home so I could watch some of the Boston Marathon.  
Somebody pinch me please!  Running Boston just got real as I watched this year's marathon live!  It is so hard for me to actually process in my brain that next year "I", yes lil 'ole me, will be running it!  How did that happen?  ME?!!!  Really?  DREAMS DO COME TRUE!  

One year from now I will be running the streets of Boston pounding my feet on the same pavement that some of the world's greatest runners in the history of running have pounded their own feet and some just that very day!  I'll literally be running in their footsteps! I wonder if any of us "normal" runners will get to meet them?  They are probably long gone (showered, fed, caught a Red Sox game, had a nap or two), by the time we cross the finish line.  

In only one year I will be running in the world's oldest marathon (it's history is amazing!) with 30,000 other runners who also had a dream of someday qualifying for the privilege of running one of the world's most prestigious marathons and didn't give up on their dream or let those dreams scare them, but instead worked hard to make them happen. Each person's story of their own road to Boston must be so amazing
   
Twelve months from now, partly thanks to my dear friend Shauna that lives in Maine, who said to me a few years ago, "Why don't you come and run Boston and I will cheer you on at the finish line?" , I will be running the only marathon that can't be run by just signing up, but by qualifying with stringent times We had quite the laugh about that because she thought anyone could run Boston just by registering.  If that were true, Boston wouldn't be Boston.  I pretty much blew her off knowing if I ever did qualify, I'd most likely be 90 years old. I told her, "I will come and visit you and we can go to the finish line and cheer the runners on together!" But just the thought of running it and having her cheer me on, wouldn't leave my head.  In fact, I told her that I would do my best to make it there and that is what really spurred me on to push myself harder than I ever have because I had that vision in my head and I really wanted it to become a reality.

The truth is, I am still in shock that I qualified to be there.  It is still a dream to me.  A dream that I didn't think was even a remote possibility until I had that motivation to give it my best effort and try my hardest to get there.  Deep down I never thought it would happen.  It was hard.  Really hard.  I got really discouraged.  I watched a good friend run 18 marathons before she qualified! 18!!!  A few of them she was only seconds from her qualifying time. Just the thought of running that many with an all out effort overwhelmed me.  I wanted it, but I wasn't sure I would ever be fast enough or be able to push myself hard enough.  Even one marathon takes so much out of you, but 18?! 

I tried to qualify at Ogden in a downpour...twice!  I tried to qualify at Big Cottonwood in the scorching heat.  I really wanted to qualify at Ogden so I could have been running Boston this year, but I was 3 minutes off.  So, I really up-ed my training, incorporated a lot of tough speed work (which I loathe) and worked harder than ever before.  It was not fun.  I tried again to qualify last October at the St. George Marathon and... I DID IT!  It was such a huge weight off my shoulders when I saw my time! I qualified for two age divisions - my age now and my age when I will be running it next year which gives me an extra 10 minutes.  But registration had closed for this year.  I ran a sub four marathon (a miracle in itself at my age! haha) which gave me a 12 minute window!  This year you needed a 2 min 28 sec window to get in That means even if you qualify you don't get in unless you are faster than your qualifying time by 2:28.  They turned away over 4,600 runners that qualified this year.  Now only the fastest of the fast actually get to run it.  Qualify or not.  Qualifying is no longer a guaranteed bib number.  So for me, even if registration hadn't closed, I would have needed to be around 1 minute and 13 seconds faster to actually get accepted with my time of 3:58:45 for my age as of this year.  Oh, that would've hurt!  For 2016 my BQ time was 4:00.  For 2017 it is 4:10.  But the window for 2017 will be even harder.  It gets harder every year.  I feel pretty safe with the 12 minute window though. Still going to knock on wood anyway!

Is that all clear as mud?  Oh well, hopefully at least I will understand when I go back and read it all when I'm 90!

Here ↓ is a photo of the Utah runners that are running it this year.  Next year I will be in that photo! Oh my gosh, did I just say that?  I'm still having a hard time believing it's true.  I'm going to need somebody to pinch me again!  Is this real and I'm no longer dreaming?  April 17, 2017!
I watched the live stream of the finish line of the regular runners.  The elites finished when I was on my run.  I loved watching and I couldn't stop long enough to even go shower!  Now, I get how guys can watch football games all day.  I really wanted to just watch it all day. 

There were some very touching moments.  I was not expecting to see so many runners either collapse as soon as they crossed the finish line or see so many start to go down just as a volunteer caught them.  I must have seen at least 30 being taken off in a wheelchair. But when you have 30,000 runners, I guess you will see a lot of that.  I also think it might be partly due to the fact that this IS Boston!  Even if you are sick, injured or feeling like crap, odds are you are STILL going to run it because you may never get another chance.  It's not like you can just sign up for it next year. You would have to re-qualify.  Running Boston is like the Super Bowl for runners.  Once you make it there, it would take something big to not run it.  As I said before, this is the only marathon that in order to get in, you have to meet a strict time standard and it's not easy.  Just ask me! :) 
About 10.4% of marathoners qualify for Boston.  And so I imagine there are a lot of runners that are not feeling 100% when they start and even if they are, feeling great at the finish is pretty rare on a good day.
There were some runners dressed in crazy get ups and I saw a few do a cartwheel as they crossed the finish line.  I saw several kiss the finish line and I even saw one guy do push-ups.  It was so entertaining, but mostly inspiring.

  I am so excited I will be there next year!!!
  
I wanted to just jump up and down with joy!  I do wish I had been able to BQ at the Ogden Marathon so I would have been there this year, but it is what it is. As long as I get to run it, I don't care if I do have to wait a full year!  Now to stay trained and injury free for 12 more months!
It was all worth it and this next year will be worth all the hard training as well!    

DREAMS DO COME TRUE!!!  

I am proof!
(I did a full post on this separately [for reference for me] so no need to read that too) 

 It's a good thing I had a meeting for our Stake YW sports, or I would have probably watched the marathon for three or four hours!  At our meeting I was talking to Ayako about making the rolls into orange rolls and she told me that there was a version in her ward cookbook. I took a photo so I can remember how. Can't wait to try them.

dear fhe, after dinner Dave and I decided to take a walk for FHE.  Haha  Hey, whatever works!  It was a little chilly, but a pretty nice day.  We went about four miles.  And surprisingly we didn't get stopped by anyone for medical or church stuff.

Bryce took off tonight for St. George for a few days.  I got these pix off of Snapchat.



dear tuesday, I went on a short run because I had an early hair appointment.  I was so excited to get a color because it gives me so much more body and so I like wearing it natural (curly) after a color.  What I don't like is learning that all the poky fly-aways that have just appeared lately aren't just broken off damaged hair.  Some of them are gray hair!  I have gone this long without any gray and now it thinks it's okay to just show up?  Luckily, it's only a few here and there.  But still!
That's what I think of that! Hmmm.....
Right after that I had to rush to a birthday lunch at Taco Time for some of the sister's in our ward.  It was interesting and fun getting to know some of them better that I don't usually get to do things with.  But no pix.  
My friend who loves all things pigs brought me a cute card and gift because I gave her some cute piggy things.  Wonder Woman socks. LOL  She is a hoot.  Those actually might come in handy for a future race.
Here are a couple pix from some of this week's runs....
It has been  very windy this week!
Nature is waking up!







dear spring!  I LOVE YOU!  Spring has always been my favorite season!  Not sure how it can't be everybody's!  How can you not LOVE the AMAZING fragrance that just permeates the air?  Or the gorgeous colors of blossoms blooming in full force everywhere you look?  Or feeling the bright sun warming your body and soul after a long and cold winter?  I just can't get enough of spring. I wish it lasted longer!
I got this photo online.  God's creations are stunning!  Those don't even look real!

I did take this one ↓...
They ARE real.  Straight from my backyard!

Lilacs are my favorite flower.  I think the smell of lilacs is the best scent in the world!  When you walk outside, it smells like the world has plugged in it's own air freshener!
Because of my love for lilacs, Dave always keeps a few vases full of lilac bouquets while they are in bloom.  When we were dating, he filled my entire room with vases and vases of lilac bouquets.  I have no idea how he pulled that off because he didn't live close, but he did.  Our entire house smelled so good!  I wish they would stay out longer.  But I enjoy them to their fullest while they do.
You can see my silk lilac bouquet in the background on my table.  If only they had the same aroma!
A few shots of our yard...


dear speedwork wednesday, I decided to buckle down and get back to my track torture.  I wasn't going to put pressure on myself but just go with whatever my time was and focus on improvement instead of discouragementBut I was still a little disappointed that my first two Yasso 800's were 10 seconds slower than what I was doing before St. George last year.  However, I was pleasantly surprised when the last of the four repeats, I cut those 10 seconds off and got back to what I wanted.  Not sure how I get faster when I'm repeating on tired legs, but it seems to work that way.  It might have something to do with the boy's gym class that came outI think I ran faster so I could leave!  haha
Sarah was walking the track and I talked to her for awhile too.
 
I used my new mini waffle maker!  Isn't it cute!?  Love it. But I am a little disappointed that the waffles take a lot longer to cook than I like.  I might even return it.

dear busy wednesday, I was able to accomplish a lot of things today that I needed to get done on my to do list. I love when I check off more things than not.  I even cleaned part of the garage.  I usually leave that to Dave and the boys, but I had to put away some of my stuff.  Taylor was coming home for a bit and so I made him a meatloaf for dinner and one to take back to freeze and some caramel corn to take on his trip to Zions.  I practiced the harp for quite a while because this week's assignments have been tough.  I had a good chat with Sky as well and learned about his Instagram business venture. I might attempt to do my own.

dear mr. cat, hahahaha!  This has to be one of my favorite pictures!  
 The way you can just relax amazes me....


dear thursday, at my harp lesson I was given the song that she says most students cry over at some point because of the difficulty .  I actually think I will enjoy it.  Now, Mary Had a Little Lamb nearly brought me to tears but I think this one looks easier to me.  We will see!  I went to a swimsuit store and got a new one for the cruise.  Then I made a return to Tai Pan and went and visited Mona.  She is doing okay, but broke down in tears today as she told me that I had saved her life.  She said that Bonnie and I made her see that she has worth and is valuable and has talents and she never believed that before.  She said she now believes it and it has honestly changed her entire life.  She had me in tears.  I just love her and feel so bad she has had such a hard life.  She is the purest soul you will ever meet.   I am very blessed I have been able to be her friendI came home and fixed dinner and then headed to our Stake YW kickball game.  It was a lot of fun! :)  I love being back in YW even though it's on a much smaller scale.  

Haha a picture of Taylor I got from Snapchat.  He is at Zion's. 


dear friday, I wanted to get in a long run today, but I was worried I would have no legs for tomorrow's race if I did more than 8 miles.  It was a tough 8 miles. I felt sluggish and was not fast at all.  Ugh.  Makes me worried for my race now.  
I found this ↑ penny in the most unusual place.  Then I found another one in another strange place.  I always get so excited when I find them in such remote places.
 I really run in some beautiful places.
 
Mr. Tom turkey is really strutting his stuff lately.  He is always chasing the poor ladies.
Bryce made it home from down south and Dave and I went on a date to Wingers. We had quite the thunderstorm tonight. Mr. Cat was out in it. Lucky for him, it woke me up at 4:30 a.m.


dear rotary 5k, I was not sure how well I would do in this race since it was a horribly windy day and I haven't been in a race for five months!  I feared I would be like a turtle in molasses!  BUT... no one was more surprised than myself when I found out I won OVERALL WOMAN!  I won a $25 gift card to Maddox and a $25 gift card to iTunes!!!  I came out ahead after the registration fee of $20:)  Better than a ribbon or a medal!  I won overall woman last year at this race as well, but was not expecting that this year because there were a lot more runners!  Still, it was a small town race and nothing to be impressed about, I am just glad I got such awesome prizes!  I had NO idea I was in the lead for the women.  I thought for sure there were several ahead of me.  I was so stoked when I found out!  It gave me the confidence boost I needed right now because I have worried taking the last six months off from marathon training have slowed me down a lot.  My time was about a minute slower than last year (last year was 24:41 and this year it was 25:35) but I think the wind contributed a bit to that.  Who knows?  And they made the course longer than last year because someone complained it wasn't  exactly a 3.1.  Hmmm.... Best part is I felt really good running and I know I could have pushed it more if I would have had to. So, I am feeling good about it. It was supposed to rain ALL day (100% chance they said - so glad they were wrong!) but we got a great run with no rain...just the brutal head wind!  Seemed like we had headwind no matter what direction we were going! I was excited to run this race again this year because last year they gave away amazing door prizes!   This year I won a free pizza at Pizza Hut for a door prize!  Woot!  I was happy with that too! I really came out ahead on this one!
With my winnings!
With Robin
We were going to run there and home but the weather was pretty awful and Robin was on a time crunch and so we bagged that and just drove home.  The wind was a beast and it rained the rest of the day.


dear if you give a mouse a cookie... On Saturday I spent most of the day cleaning.  I had so much to get done.  I started with cleaning my bathroom and after I finished that I started cleaning my room. I dusted and started to vacuum when my laundry beeped and so I went in there to take care of it and I noticed a pile of unfolded socks.  I folded those and when I put the solos in the missing sock drawer, I noticed it really needed to be dejunked and so I did that.  I did even better on my 25% purge goal with those!  While I was in there I saw some containers on the counter that needed to be put away with the others under my sink and so I started to put them away and saw a bucket of Oxi Clean that had a big crack in it and was spilling out.  I fixed that and vacuumed up the mess and noticed I needed to rearrange the other containers so the new ones would fit.   I ended up reorganizing the entire cupboard.  I didn't reach my 25% purge on that one though.   I decided to dust and vacuum while I was in there.  I was beginning to see a pattern here.  If you give a mouse a cookie....  talk about distraction!  I finally folded my laundry and went in my closet to put it away.  While I was in there I noticed my running clothes needed to be organized (I had put away my winter ones but due to living in Utah in the spring, I had to get them back out again last week and hadn't put them away again), so I did that.  Then I noticed my earrings that I have been wanting to go through and organize because I have been missing a few.  So, I also did that while I was in there.  This went on and on.  I never did get my room cleaned how I wanted.  If you give a mouse a cookie...  I am not usually like this. I prefer to focus on getting one thing done and checked off before moving to the next.  I think maybe deep down, I just didn't want to do my room.  And no one even gave me a cookie... 


dear sunday school class, Dave (Mr. Pres) decided to join us today.  I was okay with it and was actually grateful for his help.  I did several object lessons about the restoration of the gospel.  This puzzle was one of them.  
Each piece represents part of what had to be restored.  I also had a bunch of small objects (paper clip, safety pin, dime, golf tee, rock, bobby pin, etc) and I stood behind them and dropped them one at a time in a glass jar and had them write down what they heard.  They had to try and determine what object I dropped by the sound.  No one got them all right.  One got zero right. Dave got all but one right.  The comparison being that during Joseph Smith's time they all had the same information but there were so many different ways of interpreting it.  I explained that even though the same information was available through the scriptures, everyone took it to mean what they wished.  They "heard" what they wanted and "believed" what they thought was how it should be. No one got it all right until it was finally restored by Joseph Smith under the direction of Jesus Christ.  I could see the light go on in some of them.  I have a strong testimony of the prophet Joseph Smith.  I know the gospel was restored in it's fullness through Him and that we now have the light and knowledge of all we need to return to our Heavenly Father and His son Jesus Christ.  I sure do love teaching my class.



dear recipe, I had some leftover rotisserie chicken on Sunday and so I decided to make this Wild Rice and Chicken casserole.  It was REALLY yummy.  It almost tastes like Hawaiian Haystacks in a casserole!

Wild Rice & Chicken Casserole
  • 1 box Uncle Ben's Long Grain and Chicken and Wild Rice
  • 1 can cream of mushroom soup
  • 2 cups cooked chicken, cubed or shredded ( I used leftover Rotisserie chicken)
  • 1 cup frozen peas
  • 1/2 cup of fresh sliced carrots, boiled until soft ( or you can add them to the rice as it simmers)
  • 1/2 cup cream or milk
  • 1 tablespoon butter
  • 1/2 onion, diced
  • 1/2 stalk celery, diced
  • 1 cup grated cheese (any kind you have)
  • 1/3 cup toasted slivered almonds
Directions:
Cook box of rice according to packaged directions. In skillet, melt butter and sautee onion and celery over medium heat until softened, about 5 minutes. Once cooked, spoon rice into 9x13 casserole dish.  To the rice, add cream of mushroom soup, chicken, vegetables, cream, cooked onion and celery, half the cheese and half the almonds.  Season with some salt and pepper. Mix well and spread. Top with other half of cheese and almonds. Cover with foil and warm thoroughly at 300 degrees for at least 30 minutes. Serve with a side salad and biscuits.
Before baking and adding the cheese and almonds on top
This is a great family meal served with salad and biscuits.

dear elder mckay, we received an email from the mission president's wife and these pictures.  She said they had visited their area and how they attended sacrament with them and they got to watch conference with them.  The members fed everyone after.  He looks good and happy!  I sure do love this boy!
 Pix he sent this week:

I found this one on another blog...
 You can visit his blog here.
dear all in a day's run...  one day last week I saw so many strange things - most of them bad such as dead snakes, roadkill, garbage people throw on the side of the road, etc.  I realized I was only noticing the bad, when there was also so much good to see.  I decided to try and focus on the good instead.  I saw gorgeous spring flowers, a penny, a heart rock, the beauties of nature and it's creations.  The good is always there among the bad.  It just doesn't always jump out at us like the bad.  It takes a bit more work to focus on it. 

dear quotes,
Love this!
Great point!
Hahaha!!!!  Now that sounds like a party! 
These are great!
This goes with the "Be the person who says that one nice thing!"
Hard things do change us. A lot.  but that's okay.
Now to just stop doing it!  :)
 

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