Saturday, May 30, 2009

May 30: Random Rain. . .

We are in a wet, green tunnel in Ellsworth Maine right now. . . The weather keeps backing up the time or date of the Big Clear, but rumor is we should get some sun today. We shall see. I feel sorry for the track coaches of the world!

I am not competing in anything this weekend! Last Monday Younger and I ran the Memorial Mile, and we BOTH chopped nearly a minute and a quarter off our last years' times. . . . Pic to follow. . .

I won my age group! Shocking! Much fun, and my foot continues to feel pretty darn good. Yesssssss.

Today Younger, three friends, and I go to the long-awaited reopening of our local two-show movie theater to see UP. We've planned this for months, and were planning to go to Bar Harbor to see it, so we're delighted to do the local thing and stay around here, saving time and gas and supporting ELLSWORTH! It's an earlyish show so I may have time to do some knitting tonight afterwards as well. That Feb. Lady Sweater languishes, and my socks for BH aren't ezzackly flying off the needles, either! Busy stretch.

I am craving vegetables in my diet. . . my dream menu for dinner tonight is: curried squash soup, ravioli with carmelized vegs, feta, and asparagus, and a fruit pie. Needless to say I would have to make all of those things occur, and. . . not sure if that will happen! BUT I do plan to stop by the farmer's market and see what local goodness they've got on offer, despite the wet! I'd also like to put in a good weeding session at the church jungle--I mean garden! The lily of the valley and the speedier weeds are taking huge advantage of the weather, and tho this week marks the height of the l. of v.'s appeal, since it's blossoming, I'd love to reduce it to islands of green rather than a huge sea of it. The PLAN was that I would run first, then weed while sweaty already, but that might not happen.

I'm facing about a week of craziness, since the ninth grade class my colleagues and I debuted this year has its major public presentation on Thursday, and then on Friday I head to Pilgrim Lodge for the women's retreat, and I have to take the boys to Brewer for the ortho. Monday, have a hair cut Tuesday, and have Mission on Wed. . . . so next Sunday night will be a peaceful place to be. HOWEVER: my life is full, happy, rich, rewarding, full of loving people and good fortune, and there's a lot of teaching fulfillment coming up as I/we see our kids show off what they've practiced and learned. So. Stress: ha! It's challenge and reward.

Off to eat yogurt and fruit for b'fast. Step one!

Sunday, May 17, 2009

May 17: Post-Mini-Triathlon

Well, yay! Yesterday I completed my first mini-tri (also known as a "sprint" triathlon, but since there was no sprinting involved in it at all for me, I prefer "mini"--tho even that didn't feel right at about .5 mile into the run!). It was a great day for a triathlon, tho the wind picked up a bit as the day went on. I was really nervous, having never done a competitive swim or bike ever in my life, but, as part of my mind knew, the usual camaraderie of family-oriented sports events came out and all was fine. As it was, I was very proud of my swim (I actually beat my lane-partner, who happens to be my neighbor!) and I cooked on the bike--since I was in the last "wave" of swimmers, there weren't a lot of people behind me to pass me (nice!) and I actually passed a lot of other people (8? 10?) on the bike course. It was definitely the strongest ride I'd done--practice paid off. However, when I started the run. . . . oof. It all hit. Maybe I didn't stretch enough, in between, maybe I had gone too hard, maybe I was just tired (ya think?), but the run was wooden and stiff. The last 1/2 mile I was able to speed up a bit past a "I hit the wall!" plod, but it was definitely the slowest and hardest part of my events.

Still. . . I did it, kept moving the whole time, met some fun people, participated in a group thing, raised some money for the Y, and am pretty darn proud of myself!

BH and I went out to lunch, then came home and I slept for TWO HOURS! That felt great!

And now my life has that "opened out" feeling one gets when something big is done. . . and I have tons of plans for the emotional/worrying/physical energy I've been putting into training, starting with a good food shop today after church and then some major school planning. Look out, World: here I come!

Sunday, May 10, 2009

May 10: Can Knitting Be Cursed?

I have been working on a pair of socks for BH, my biggest sock supporter. They're nothing spectacular, no funky pattern since the yarn is pretty out there (brown base with a varigated green/yellow/blue/white intermittent pattern, no regular striping), no unusual details. Knit toe up so I can be sure to make the feet long enough and then compromise on the leg length. Supposed to be my portable project as I forge onwards with the Feb. Lady Sweater. Fine.

Time one: too big. Even on BH's big ol' size 13s, there was extra. Okay, tear it out. Here it is before Frogging #1. Looks innocent and doable (if big), huh? HUH? Just. wait.

Time two. Better. I think this will work (smaller needles). Fine, fine, up to heel. Wanted to do the eye of partridge with the short row heel. Yikes: big weird pucker. Pondered. Frogged heel.

Time three: held off on e of p for about 6 rows to allow the heel to establish itself BEFORE getting tighter. Still a little pucker. Not enamored of this heel. Didn't I do it once before, fine? On maybe my third pair of socks? Frogged heel, lead in and turning. It's my sock. I get to.

Time four: New heel pattern. LIked pic, let's go. Oops. Following pattern and learning "w & t" technique while hurrying to get done and waiting for sister's arrival so we can go out to dinner. . . . not so good. Frogged heel.

Time five: NEARLY frogged heel over weird numbers and knitting wraps into their matching stitches--I think I did it right on one side, wrong on the other, but I held it together. Then I casually counted to be sure there were 38 stitches. Nope: 26. TWENTY SIX. I had gleefully continued making my ssks and p2 togs over the gaps, creating my gorgeous eye of partridge heel stripes for a LOT too long. So. I. FROGGED. AGAIN.

Then I went to bed, having rescued the stitches on a size 0 needle but without the heart to really situate everything and get it going again. Honestly. This "portable project" may do me in forever--or, as the kids say, "for-freakin'-ever."

And. . . the deer ate all but two of my tulips in the garden out front. VERY carefully. Vermin.

Friday, May 8, 2009

May 8: How did THAT Happen?

I've been thinking about posts and posting, but somehow they never happened. Partly, my free time has been very limited, and I am very aware of how The Computer gobbles up one's time. I can't decide if I like the phrase "a timesuck" or not, but that last syllable, "suck", certainly captures in sloppy, glottal onomatopoeia the way a free hour ("I can knit! I can relax! I can read a chapter or two of my hedgehog book or the bio of Harper Lee or that wonderful novel I'm rereading!") can disappear ("Well, I updated my Facebook page and read about two reality tv stars I've never seen on a tv I would never watch."). So, I have been limiting my "screen time," as we call it 'round here.

But I want to share a few pics because they are LOVELY. And then I am going to head out and hang up laundry load #3 for the afternoon. FRIDAY afternoon, too. THEN I plan to KNIT.

Take that, Computers.

Here's my last Fall's contribution to beauty at our house. We can even smell the hyacinths in the back yard!

And here's the small window of niceness I created during my precious, beloved, welcome personal day (NONE of which I wasted "on screen," I am glad to say!) in my little front garden: