Friday, April 17, 2015

Rest of Spring Break 2015 *Graphic Pic Warning

(Do not scroll down if you are sitting in a busy waiting room or you have a weak stomach - you have been warned.) We came back from 50-degree weather in Wisconsin and headed for 70-degree weather at the beach. A little cool for swimming, but nice enough to take the dog for a paddle board.

I met my sewing buddy Robbie at a nice restaurant for lunch, and was planning to do a nice review of them, so I took a bunch of pictures. This is the cool fish tank with stingrays and all kinds of fish you can pet...I guess.

These were the cool light fixtures, and the food at lunch was GREAT!

Love the decor! Alas, I took the family back for dinner the next night, and was really let down, so no big review now. But if you're in a boat in Wolf Bay and want to dock at the Cayman Grill, definitely stop for lunch on the deck. If it's nighttime and you want well-cooked fish, keep on going! One funny story - the waitress, who seemed to be from another planet, took our drink orders, then brought the boys' Cokes in tiny kids' cups with bendy straws. Lucas, the 12-year-old, would've been offended if this happened just to him, but it also applied to 18-yr-old Drew, who's 6'2 with a buzz cut. We all cracked up and Drew immediately Snapchatted a pic to his friends. Then when she took our food order, she actually asked him if he wanted the adult pizza or the kid's pizza! The hilarity did not quite make up for the overcooked, unseasoned fish, sadly.

On Saturday, I got up at 6:30 AM to run a 5K - go me! Unfortunately, I came down the stairs in my sock feet, which is a big no-no for someone with Mad Cow disease, as you can see from previous posts. So one foot flew off the step and I fell straight back onto my derriere and right hip, which were clothed in slippery running shorts, so I proceeded to bump down 10 steps as if on the lubed-up sled from Christmas Vacation. My forearm banging on each step didn't even stop me, but THIS time (yes, this was the second time I did this) I didn't bruise the arm up, at least. So I was trying to dress and leave the house quietly, but Dean did jump up to come check on me. I walked around and didn't seem to have broken anything, so I went on and ran the 5K - booyah! Even shaved 3 minutes off my time (33:46), but this was because there were only about 25 people running, and I didn't want to be the last one. Now hold the phone, because I just checked the results, and would you believe that I came in 3rd in my age group?! I'm going back to count - I bet there were only 3 of us.

Okay, back to my Mad Cow. I came home, ate a nice breakfast Dean made for me, loaded up with ibuprofen for the hip pain to come, got in the bed, and proceeded to have that hysterical laughing then crying thing I do after falling - it was just delayed a little because of the 5K. It seems to be a combination of happiness that I haven't broken anything when I fall, and sadness at the inevitability of a broken hip in my future.'s that graphic pic I warned you about. It's quite educational in what happens to your leg when you fall down and you're on aspirin. I'm hoping gangrene doesn't set in....and that Giovanni Ribisi doesn't show up and declare my leg "south of cheese."

There was another large bruise perfectly outlining my coccyx down to the 3 spinous tubercles, but I'll leave that one to your imagination. Here's the anatomical diagram. (Yes, if you Google-image that, somebody posted their actual bruise.)

Let's leave you with something more appetizing - this is how Dean fixed Cuban sandwiches for us when we had to come back to the real world of school and work. The man is a whiz with cast iron pans!

Now what are you doing this weekend?

Wednesday, April 8, 2015

First Half of Spring Break 2015...

And we spent it in Wisconsin with my sister's family. Poor Dean had to work, and it's mighty hard to get to Sparta, so he stayed back. The boys and I flew into La Crosse, which is a lovely city, though they're working on the airport....ahem.

We ate at a great Mexican restaurant called Manny's, in Onalaska I believe, where the bowl of queso dip dwarfs what we get here in Alabama.

And the next day Tracey made delicious crescent rolls with homemade cinnamon filling and glaze - YUM.

Here's a bat in the barn - did I mention they live on a farm now? I declined to climb the ladder for a shot of hundreds of bats - sorry.

This is where they used to bring the cows for it's bike storage.

The boys got to experience chickens for the first time ever - whee!

This is called an ugly-neck, or something more official, because it doesn't have any feathers on parts of its neck.

Their snow just recently melted, and we had great weather for getting outside and playing Frisbee and riding bikes.

I did attempt a chicken-selfie (is that a thing?), but she was staring at me a little too intently, so I was a'skeered of getting pecked.

Joe had a little White Lightnin' from Tennessee, so we had screwdrivers - very smooth!

We drove into Cashton to sample some cheese and look at Norwegian gifts, and I saw a windmill for the first time in person - is that what you call this?

We found an antique store that had vintage patterns, so I bought these 3, but I need to talk to you vintage pattern-buying women, because I was under the impression you could get a bundle for a few bucks. These were $3 a piece! I was especially dismayed when I found out the woman double-charged me, and we had to go back after lunch to straighten that out.

When we got back home, Tracey and I put on our running gear and headed out for a "shuffle," as she calls it.

I don't what you'd call this, other than silly.

And fun, actually.

Drew had the most fun petting their cat, oddly enough.

And on the way to the airport, we stopped at Fitting Knits, one of two LYS in La Crosse, where I bought these 2 skeins on clearance.

So that was a short but sweet start to our Spring Break, and now we can say we've been to Wisconsin! Now to start the beach portion of our week, and I'm running a 5K on Saturday, since I MAY be in training for a half-marathon in Amish country in September!!!!! More on that later....what are YOU up to this week?

Monday, March 30, 2015

Now Commencing Running Blog....

Yeah, forget all that fashion stuff I was talking about. This blog originally started as a place to tell funny family stories, then it segued into more of a sewing blog after the kids got too old to say really funny stuff and I got a new sewing machine for my birthday. Then a little bit of fashion started to creep in, but I just ran my first Azalea Trail Run 10K, thank you very much, and I AM ADDICTED! I FINALLY got a runner's high, and it lasted all day long!

Now I'll be honest with you, Dean and I started running as a way to get Drew off the couch since he was applying for an Air Force ROTC scholarship, which involves a fitness test, and the kid hadn't done PE in a few years. We downloaded the C25K app on our iPhones, and Dean was much better at running 3 days a week, so he finished the program weeks ahead of me. He and Drew did a Spartan race in Mississippi, then the 3 of us signed up for our first 5K at Brookley Aeroplex's "5K on the Runway". I found it a little bit boring because it was a RUNWAY, and I was pretty gassed at the end and did a bunch of walking, but still looked like I was having a stroke when I finished. They missed doing obstacles, and signed up for a Tough Mudder next. I'm not into hoisting myself over walls, etc., so I opted for the Azalea Trail Run next, but was planning on the 5K since I hadn't been running a whole lot. Dean pushed me to do the 10K, and I was terrified I couldn't finish. The longest I had run was 35 minutes with walk breaks, and I did 3.25 miles the week before the 10K. Of course, all the "training schedules" show 10 weeks of training and several runs of 6-7 miles, so I was a'skeered!

Here's a crappy pre-race selfie, and sorry if I was impersonating a breast cancer survivor, but my headband was pink and my ears started out cold.

Well, apparently adrenalin is a hell of a drug (uh, yeah, it's used to restart somebody's heart, so DUH!), because I never felt terribly short of breath or exhausted the whole time I was running. It was 50 degrees with very little humidity, so that couldn't have been better. I pulled off my ear-warming headband at mile 2, took my hat off at mile 3, and was contemplating removing my long-sleeved overshirt at mile 5, but the wind got a little chilly so I kept it on. I just enjoyed running with different people - a ton of whom were also doing Jeff Galloway's "run-walk-run" method. Their watches were beeping and I'd pass them when they walked, then they'd pass me when I walked, etc. There were also tons of people in their yards cheering with signs, or just watching the runners, and of course the Azalea Trail maids, plus some female convicts who apparently did some of the barricade work, so they let them hang out and dance and cheer. Good times, and I finished in 1 hour and 14 minutes, which is an 11:57 mile, I guess - not bad considering the walking. Here's a bad post-race shot, which we forgot to do until we were leaving.

So I didn't have my phone to take any in-race pics, but here's a guy's drone footage of the start, if you're interested. I'm under the interstate overpass at the start, just FYI, in the blue cap - ha!

So, does anybody wanna run an "8K by the Bay" on the 11th?!

Friday, March 27, 2015

Millions of Pictures of Me in Clothes....

Yes, I got another Front Door Fashion box, because I was so happy with the last one, and Drew's graduation is coming up, so I thought I'd just jump on in to high fashion. Shall we get started? My first thought on seeing this one was, "What the heck?" But I followed my detailed instructions from Morgan, and ended up thinking this is the cutest outfit! I would NEVER wear a big chunky necklace like this in the past, but I've been coveting one for a while now. I used my "different ways to tuck a top" card that came with the first shipment, and did a front-only tuck. I was also experimenting with a cuff, which is apparently all the rage now....a jeans cuff, that is.

Now the only reason I'm not keeping this is the shirt fits too tightly in the shoulders when I reach forward, the green tank is SOOO tight, and the jeans are so LOW cut as to nearly fall down. I'm still debating the necklace - maybe if I have something else in the closet to wear it with...

Ahoy! This is my favorite top, and it just GOES with my favorite shoes - yay!

I love the way they label each outfit and rubber-band it together so you know what's what.

Now this made me feel like a runway model with the weird black booties, or like one of Alabama Chanin's models, with their straight ahead poses and chunky shoes.

Dean walked in while I was playing with my ridiculously high peep-toe wedges and asked if I was pregnant.

Thus, I attempted to belt it and created a peplum look. Now the back is split open with black netting underneath that I just love, so I'm afraid I have to keep this and wear it to dinner with the girls. (Note to self, get some girls.)

Now I'm not sure what to do with the diaphanous drapey tunic thing, but I love the tank, so it's staying.

And let's talk about the pants, because I went off on a tangent finding things to wear with them, because I LOVE them. Except they're too big. The boys said they looked puffy and made my hips look big, but I think I just need a size smaller.

Now I am channeling a 1950's gangster - where's my submachine gun?!

Okay, I agreed to try a skirt, but do you know the last time I put one on? I don't either, so I figured the zipper goes in front like everything else I've tried on so far. Look at that slit - I can't sit down in this and remain a lady! DUH - the pockets finally clued me in that I had it on backwards. Truly an idiot.

Not so sure about this diaphanous (love that word) shrug, but maybe with something else....still thinking about it. (And I didn't have the suggested flats or sandals to wear with it, so I substituted my Nancy Lopez shoes - not a great choice.) I am keeping the polka dot tank - can wear with pants to work for sure.

Now my second favorite outfit, and the one that had me skipping around the house, possibly because of its weirdness. This is a smocked top with dangly white tassel in front, and some awesome Army green pants. I feel like a militant baby doll!

Love the hi-lo hem, and if I find the right flats, I can wear these pants to work too. I wonder if Front Door Fashion is getting kickbacks from DSW?

This was unusal, and I decided the jacket was just not me - didn't like the elasticized 3/4 sleeves.

But I DO love the top with its racerback (pardon the bra straps), and I wore these pants to work this morning - yay!

Okay, get ready for the finale - the graduation dress:

Ummmm, I'll be quiet for a second while you digest it, and I'll even close my eyes.

Okay, the main problem is the fit, because it's snug at the waist, but really weirdly blousy at the top of the shoulders and back. It's also made of a coarse burlap kind of fabric, so the inside is lined. The skirt is boufy and makes me want to skip around, but it's a little short for my comfort level, and I feel like I'll flash somebody if I bend over just a bit. So I think if I was still in my 20's or 30's, I could pull it off, but not really at 47, and Dean agreed.

SOOOOO, sorry for the very self-centered post. I feel like I didn't offer any life lessons or witty repartee, so please forgive me! Oh wait - I did snap a pic of my secretary's cute top yesterday because I think I can do this with a recycled T-shirt - isn't that cute?

When I asked her permission to shoot, she said just don't get her face in the picture. I told her, "No worries, it's just your crotch." Now there's some humor for your weekend!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Jake Does Pilates

This was around Christmas, but Lucas just shared it with me. I was doing a Pilates video on Comcast when Jake came and plopped down. He usually does this move of scratching his back in the yard....or maybe he really was trying to do some Pilates!

No other news to report, other than the fact that I finally accepted yarn defeat and restarted the Stella pullover, with Lucas's help to be sure I didn't twist the yarn at my join. Oh yeah, and I ran 3.25 miles the other day with Dean in preparation for the AZALEA TRAIL RUN!!!! Yes, I'm running a 10K - you know once you get a 5K under your belt, you just keep climbing that ladder. I imagine a half-marathon will be in the works in a couple of months - ha! (And no, I didn't just run 3.25 miles and call 'er done - I've been running 3-4 times a week, plus yoga.) Okay, you go have an ACTIVE fun day!

Monday, March 16, 2015

Prom and Knitting Devastation

Did you see Lost in Translation with Bill Murray? Well, why not - it's fabulous!

Are we bad parents for re-creating the Suntory Times scene with Drew on Prom day? The white jacket just cracked us up - a'ring-a-ding-ding! Seriously, the senior boys were all very sharp looking in their school-mandated get-ups. The funniest couple was a female German exchange student with a VERY low-cut dress letting the bosoms hang free, escorted by her 22 year old German boyfriend, who was wearing a (gasp!) black tux with sand-colored boat shoes. He was offered a boutonniere by a nervous teacher in an attempt to have him match the other senior escorts, but to no avail. Those crazy 22-year-olds!

Aside from all that titillation, I was deeply enjoying great progress on my Stella pullover (the only online knitting pattern I've ever PAID for). Have I mentioned that I've been working on this since my California trip 2 months ago, and have ripped and restarted it about 10 times?

Look at that lacy pattern with the raglan shoulder - I was almost ready to put the sleeve stitches on waste yarn (whatever that means) and start the eyelet pattern.

Then I noticed something funny - do you see it? How could it possibly be?! I started this per instructions about 8 times knitting back and forth, then decided I'd start it in the round to avoid the big gap. I was SO CAREFUL to be sure the stitches weren't twisted, but DAMMIT - apparently they were.

I haven't frogged it yet - I'm hoping someone can tell me a magical way to make it when you miss a yarnover one row back, and all you do is pick up that bar of thread when you get to it on the next row - something easy like that. This pretty much ruined my whole mood yesterday, so I'll just wait here till I hear some good news...aaaany minute now.....