Thursday, December 30, 2010

Always look on the bright side of life - you never know what's around the corner - Trees with Sweaters!

     I was shopping in Bellingham, Wa. yesterday and was near the Barkley Village Haggens when I spied these in front of the Apple yarn shop!
notice the yarn leaves!

my favorite - this one has character!
Isn't it nice that we can just be out walking and come face to face with
something that can just make you smile?

Just like the song "Always look on the bright side of life".
Click on the YouTube video below to listen to the song.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Stimpson family nature reserve trail run and Seattle 1/2 marathon report

We decided our weekend runs would be trails for awhile. We are kindof tired of our feet pounding on the pavement. For our first weekend run after the race, we picked the Stimpson family nature reserve trail near Sudden Valley. Dogs and bikes are prohibited on the trail. There are a couple options to run. We ran the main loop trail and combined that with the Geneva pond loop. It ended up being about 4.8. Very hilly and chilly. I forgot to bring my camera on the run, I should have, there was some awesome frost formations and the ponds were frozen over. Very scenic.
 Here's a link for info. on the Stimpson family reserve trail

Our Seattle 1/2 marathon went really good. We had reservations at the race headquarters hotel, the Westin. We checked in and our room was really nice and the view from the 16th floor was awesome. After we picked up our race packets, we walked to the Tilikum Place cafe' on Cedar st. by the space needle.
 Link to Tilikum Place Cafe' I have to say it was THE best restaurant food I have ever had. They have a cute window counter table in the bar area that looks out at the street, that was our perch. I highly reccomend eating there and enjoying "our" perch!
The bed!

16th floor view!

We finished the 1/2 marathon in 2 hrs. and 55 mins. and 47 sec's (Dick) 2 hrs. 55 mins. and 48 sec's (me). 4 min.'s  faster than I ran last year. It was so nice to run together, and to finish holding hands. Even though he kindof drug me across the finish field! We got to keep our room key as we stayed in the runners block of the hotel. Every finisher got a long sleeved shirt (they all say "Marathon" even thought there was a 1/2 marathon included in the event that day) and medal (these say 1/2 marathon on them - yay!!). After the race, it was nice to walk back to the hotel for a shower and change of clothes. After our 2 hr. drive home we soaked in baths to keep from getting sore and stiff. Dick in an ice bath, I just couldn't bring myself to sit in ice water, so I just filled the tub with cold water. It was a quick recovery for me. I am now back to my regular schedule and after a short time of a tight left calf - Dick is back to his. Our next goal of a pay to enter event will be the Whidbey 1/2 marathon in April.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Seattle 1/2 marathon here we come

My husband and I are on a running adventure together. In September I decided I would set a goal to run a half marathon this year. I tend to keep my exercise more regular if I have a goal in front of me (especially one that I have paid an entry fee to). I had decided on the Nookachamps run in January husband said one day that he would do a training run with me and if we could run six miles,  he would sign up as well. Only he decided it would be fun to do the Seattle half marathon the last weekend of November of this year. That shortened my training time but I was very excited to have my running partner back with me.

A little history:
In the 70's my husband & Ralph Vernacchia started the Bellingham Track and Field club (which later became the Greater Bellingham running club), we had great fun alternating our turns running with a measuring wheel to measure distances for runs we created. It was a home project. I made homemade ribbons of construction paper for the participants, and also the monthly newsletter that was sent out. No one complained about the simple ribbons, in fact most thought they were great. We measured out the original Skagit flats marathon course together. Those were great times. We used to run alot. We've both run several marathons in the past, so running a half marathon isn't new for us.

After a long hiatus from running I got back into it last year. My goal was to run the Seattle half marathon (2009) breaking the 3 hr. mark. I finished just 20 seconds under. Much slower than my younger body used to run but quite the accomplishment for me that day.

So now my husband and I have been training for this November 28th in Seattle. We've done 5 long runs in preperation for the event. Each Saturday we do a long run they have been as follows: 10 miles, 13.1 miles,  14 miles, 11 miles and an 8 miler. Our last run the 8 mile run was more exciting than the others in the fact that winter decided to descend upon us early. We had our first northeast wind and snow.
The view out our front door the night before our training run day. Gusting snow, our car is barely visible!

We decided to drive to a local forested park to get out of the wind. So we ran loops in the park for about 2 hrs. in 3 inches of snow. It's the first time I've ran that long in snow. It was great. The temps. were in the high 20's. So much fun. So now we only have just under a week till race day. Hopefully it will be a little warmer than Saturday and just as much fun as our training runs have been.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Am I making a difference in my corner of the world?

     Sometimes I get discouraged about how people in this world treat each other. Do we treat people we come into contact with as someone of value and treat them with respect? Do we bestow upon them the care and concern that we would like to be shown to us. When I speak do I choose my words wisely, knowing that they can have a great impact on others, either positively or negatively? I have the ability everyday to impact someones life positively, I have often failed the mark in this quest. I have lofty goals about how I want to be on this earth, and how I want to have a genuine connection with others. Sometimes in this quest for making a difference in this world I realize my shortcomings get in the way. If I could live my life over, I would never say a cruel or hurtful word to anyone. The words and actions we say and do in this life are here forever in peoples souls. My quest is to be a loving, caring, empathetic, encouraging, supportive person to others. How will I achieve this? One step at a time, one word at a time, and always with a forgiving heart, a heart that I hope others will have for me when I fail in this quest.
 Music always speaks to me.

One song that stays with me is Nick Lowe's "What's so funny 'bout peace, love and understanding.
Here are the words:

As I walk through this wicked world
Searching for light in the darkness of insanity
I ask myself is all hope lost
Is there only pain and hatred and misery
And each time I feel like this inside
Just one thing I wanna know
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding oh
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding

As I walk on through troubled times
My spirit gets so down hearted sometimes
So where are the strong who are the trusted
And where is the harmony sweet harmony
Cause each time I feel it slippin' away
Just makes me want to cry
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding oh
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding

So where are the strong who are the trusted
And where is the harmony sweet harmony
Cause each time I feel it slippin' away
Just makes me want to cry
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding oh
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding
What's So Funny bout Peace, Love, and Understanding

click here to watch the song video

another song that I enjoy with lofty ideals is:

Johnny Reid's "Today I'm going to try and change the world".
Here are the words:

Today I'm gonna try and change the world
Gonna take it one day at a time
I've made my resolution
I've opened up my eyes
Today I'm gonna try and change the world

I'm gonna say hello to my neighbor
Greet him with a smile
Shake the hand of a stranger
Sit and talk for a while
Tell someone I love them
From the bottom of my heart
Today I'm gonna try and change the world

(Repeat chorus)

Gonna make sure my children
Know there's a right and wrong
I'll never turn my back
On those of us who need someone
I'm gonna try to see myself
Through another's eyes
Today I'm gonna try and change the world

(Repeat chorus)

Today I'm gonna try and change the world
Today I'm gonna try and change the world
Not for me, but for those I'll leave behind
I've made my resolution
Change it one day at time
Today I'm gonna try and change the world

click here to watch this songs video

I will try with -
One step at a time, one word at a time, and always with a forgiving heart, a heart that I hope others will have for me when I fail in this quest.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Our October 2010 journey

 "Climb the mountains and get their good tidings. 
Nature's peace will flow into you as sunshine flows into trees. 
The winds will blow their own freshness into you, and the storms their energy, 
while cares will drop away from you like the leaves of Autumn"
 - John Muir
Here's an armchair tour of photo from our journey for you to enjoy!
  Our vacation travels through Washington, Idaho, Utah and Arizona -
(click on the pictures you want to see larger)

  The Clearwater river is just gorgeous. One of my favorites.

Then on to Yellowstone -

The Tetons were so beautiful with the fall colors -

then through Utah & the golden trees

we'd never been to the four corners before, so did the tourist stop

I loved the petrified forest in Arizona, great walking paths to enjoy the area on foot

the painted desert

we always go to the Grand Canyon when we are in Arizona

We did the Verde Canyon railroad tour, I highly recommend this if you have the time.

a quick stop at Cave Creek Regional park for a quick run & view of the great cactus's

a walk on the Wet Beaver trail

Jack's Canyon camping trip.

 Blue Ridge Reservoir

Flagstaff had a rare tornado while we were there, 
so we had a chance to see some of the damage afterwards

Then on to wind our way back home, we stopped at Bryce Canyon in Utah and took in the sights


  an important reminder!

Such a great trip, always hard to go home.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

I've been married to the same man for 39 yrs. who would've thunk it :-)

We decided to spend our 39th wedding Anniversary on the coast, didn't know we were going into the world of  "Twilight"! The Vampire series book is placed in the Olympic peninsula towns of Port Angeles, Forks and Lapush. We were inundated with twilight signs, good grief......I guess it's been good for these towns that generally had their economic base from logging, which has really been cut back (wow, what a pun - good for me!) but we were looking for hide aways. We stayed the first night in Sekiu  (a fishing community on the coast.) in a "quaint" (there can be various definitions to the word quaint, I'll let you use your imagination on this one.) cabin.
It was very late and it was basically the only thing available.

We then went on to Lake Ozette to do the 9.2 triangle boardwalk/beach hike

 We had done with our kids when they were young. That trip ended with a torrential rainstorm, but that is a story for another day.

The boardwalk trail is one of my favorites

The beach walk is so wonderful it travels from - Cape Alava

to Sand point. The beach has heads that you walk around, and if the tide is in you have to hike around the heads. Sometimes it is a simple trail. Other times they provide rustic stairs. The last head we had to go around wouldn't you know it the tide had been coming in and we would have had a sketchy rock ledge climb around, so we decided to do the over the head route. When we came off the rocks in our attempt to go around the head we had to circle back to where the trail was. When we came around  the corner we were surprised to see about  an 80 ft.  STRAIGHT up trail with a rope afixed and knots every foot or so for a grip (wish I'd taked a picture, but was too focused about how I was going to do this). In the past my fear level was pretty intense for doing things like this, but my new attitude about life and enjoying opportunities has really kicked in. I wasn't scared at all. I was very surprised in my ability to enjoy the effort without my hands and feet shaking. Guess what the way down was exactly the same STRAIGHT down with a fixed rope. Had to just lean back, hold on to the rope and step down. Just like that - Wow :-)
The next day we went to Ruby beach, so wonderful to hear the waves and walk on the sand

All in all - A wonderful Anniversary!

August 28, 1971 and 2010 were both great days.