Monday, October 31, 2011


I made my grand return to the soccer field last night.

Playing illegally on an over-30 team. The same over-30 team that I've been playing illegally with for a few years.

(The over-30 team that I am alarmingly close to being age-eligible to play on. OH THE HORROR.)

It was all just very standard soccer, albeit at a lower skill level than I would prefer.

Until the second half, when I got this beauty:

Look closely. Can you see the y-shaped imprint of the ball's seams?

I got DRILLED by the ball when standing maybe a foot away from the girl who kicked it.

It doesn't hurt. And just a bit of a sting when it happened. But how can you not fully appreciate having a soccer ball tattooed on the inside of your knee?

And, on a side note, do my legs not look like the skin of a plucked chicken? Gross.

Saturday, October 29, 2011

Manly Moving Men: Cheap

Dear Gods of Deal-of-the-Day Websites,

While I love scrolling through the deal-of-the-day emails that I receive every morning (usually when I’m stopped at traffic signals on my way to work), I don’t usually buy. There are only so many manicures and massages that a lowly librarian with a weakness for pricy travel needs.

But that extremely well-timed deal for movers? Less than a month out from my relocation?

Pretty much the best thing that ever happened to me.

Couple clicks. Few less funds on my debit card. Voila! Moving magic.

Now I don’t have to ask my parents for help.

Now I don’t have to hear my mom’s favorite moving-my-daughter-yet-again line: “Next time you move, darling, you need a boyfriend who has strong and helpful buddies.”

Thank you, almighty Gods of Deal-of-the-Day Websites, for enabling me to feel less like a single loser and more like an independent woman who needs a manicure and a massage.

Thursday, October 27, 2011


I am having one of those days where I may or may not burst into tears at any second*, so we’re going to be employing the power of distraction

And talking about makeup.

Do some people have mothers who teach them how to wear makeup?

Because I did not. I had a mother who taught me how to sew. I had a mother who taught me to love reading. I had a mother who tutored me in the baking of cookies and the importance of education and the appeal of the classic and simple. But I did not have a mother who taught me how to apply makeup.

Or how to shave my legs.

Therefore, I consider it to be a minor miracle that my legs are not more scarred up and that I did not go through a phase where I was all blue eyeshadow and clumpy mascara and generally looked like a blind child prostitute.

When I was a freshman in high school, my grandma took me to the Clinique counter at the department store. She had worked in cosmetics at that very store for years and years and years. She let the ladies run wild. Powder and eyeshadow and mascara and blush and lipstick. Oh, how beautiful I felt on that random weekday afternoon when I just happened to be off of school and had soccer practice that night.

Grandma bought me blush and eyeshadow the day. Maybe powder, too. All I can ever remember wearing was the eyeshadow, a barely-there brown shade that you wouldn't notice if I applied it with a trowel.

Buying me makeup that was so subtle that you couldn't actually see it? Tricky, Grandma. Very tricky. (I have tucked this trickery away for use on my future daughters.)

When I was in college, I discovered the magic that is blush. I could go without mascara or eyeshadow or any lip color whatsoever. But blush and I? We're tight.

I would buy a best friends necklace for Benefit Dandelion. Or NARS Orgasm.

I still tend to lean towards the oh-wait-you-have-eye-makeup-on eye makeup which, while it keeps me from looking like I'm trolling for business when I stand on street corners, tends to feel pretty plain and pretty boring. Not that I want any of my makeup to be like HI, I'M WEARING MAKEUP but this is seriously minimal. Although I do always wear mascara (and am better off for it) and have recently figured out how to wear eyeliner and not look like I should be in a hair band.

And, when it comes to lip color, if it isn't a tinted lip balm then it probably isn't going on my face. Or, in a rare show of courage, it is going on my face for an average of 12 seconds. Until I furiously wipe it off while scolding myself for pretending to be a Real Grownup Lady.

I am not going to tell you how long into my life it took me to learn how to employ the magic that is a bobby pin. Or do anything with my hair that was not a ponytail. Just know that I was probably closer to 30 than I was to 20. And, by all means, feel free to laugh.

Just don't laugh at my eye makeup.

Or lack thereof.

*I was never like this until just before The Coach left. Now I cry, like, twice a week. Either his departure opened the floodgates to my soul or I am destined to be on an episode of I Didn’t Know I Was Pregnant on TLC.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

Infinite possibility

I picked up boxes from Liz on my way home from work on Monday.

(Unrelated: it took me a mere 15 minutes to get from my office to Liz's driveway. I am so excited about the shortened commute.)

Last night, after tackling the treadmill for an hour, I started packing. At this early stage in my move, I'm just boxing up the things that I can live without for the next three weeks.

And those items are largely the same items that I'll be storing in Liz's basement. She has a house full of all of the essentials. We won't need two rolling pins. We won't even need two blenders. (Unless we throw a margarita party. We should have a margarita party, right?)

So what I'm packing, I'm packing for the long haul. I'm packing up items that will stay in storage until -- well, I have no idea. Until they're no longer in storage.

Until I need them.

It's sort of fun, packing up these boxes with no clue as to when they'll be unpacked. Under what circumstances they'll be unpacked.

I don't know how long I will live with Liz. I don't know why I'll move out.

Liz could kick me out. I could be buying a house of my own. I could be relocating for a job. I could be moving in with a boy. I might just be sick of living with a roommate. Circumstances could be such that I am going to live with Mom and Dad. How can you know? How can you possibly know?

It's a fun part of life -- the infinite possibility that stretches before you. The unknown.

I like the taste of the endless possibilities. But I also wouldn't mind a little glimpse into the future.

Any psychics in the audience?

Tuesday, October 25, 2011


When I drive by Colin’s house, I still look to see what cars are in the driveway.

When I drive by Colin’s job, I still check the parking lot to see if he’s there.

When I played in the league that he runs last winter, every week was an exercise in holding my breath and holding my tongue. Hoping that he wasn’t there. Hoping that he wouldn’t see me. Hoping that I could get in and get out without a word passing between us.

“Hey there, Sunshine,” he said to me at one of the games. I wrote about it when it happened. It pissed me off. When I think about it now, it still pisses me off. Sunshine. It sounds cute until you know him. Until you spend years on and off and on again, observing all of his bullshit behaviors. Including substituting Sunshine for the name of any female whose name you don’t know.

My name? Is not Sunshine. He knows my damn name.

His name? As much as I would like to, I haven’t forgotten it, either.

Do you guys remember how it ended? When – just after his birthday and just before Christmas – he disappeared? He stopped calling and stopped texting and stopped emailing and, of course, never returned any of the sort from me.

I had been around for years at that point. Years. And instead of tell me that it was over. Or explain that he needed a little bit of space. Or have the guts to explain what was going on in his life. He just disappeared. As though he could slip out of my life unnoticed.

And it continues to haunt me.

It’s always the same fear. With every guy who has been in my life since Colin, it is always the same. I assume that they are cowards. That they couldn’t possibly ends things respectfully. That one day they will disappear. Without warning. Without explanation. Because I don’t deserve that courtesy. Because I’ll figure it out eventually.

I hate that.

Any time that The Coach is busy (he’s in the meaty part of his season now and he is quite in demand and my head knows this even though my heart oftentimes does not) – even if it is just for a few hours – I hold my breath. And every text message that sits at the top of my inbox, I assume is The Very Last One Ever until my phone chirps at the receipt of another, be it a minute or a day later.

And still I haven’t programmed The Coach's number into my phone. To spare myself the indignity of deleting it out after he disappears. Because don’t they all disappear?

The Coach isn’t Colin. They have nothing in common.

But I can't shake it. It has been years and I still can't shake it.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Bobby pins

There is always a pile of books on my nightstand. Tissues and lip balm. The alarm clock that I never use. And two bobby pins that have been sitting there since August. Since the last day The Coach was over. We were talking – he in my bed while I stood beside it, absently pulling the bobby pins from my hair. I hooked them together before dropping them on the nightstand. And that is where they have remained.

I leave them there. Where I can see them every morning and every night. So I can remember that day when I tugged them from my hair and that man who watched as I did so.

Proof, in a way, that he was there. That we happened. That I am not living this entirely in my head. That the person on the other side of the phone is real.

I’ll leave them for four more weeks. I will remember for four more weeks.

And then I move.

I am excited – I really am – but I am nervous, too. About a lot of things. Nervous is part of my nature. What I am most nervous about, truthfully, is breaking the spell.

I am nervous that when The Coach comes back it won’t be the same. I will, physically, be in a new place. I’ll have a new bedspread. And those bobby pins will be tossed amongst all the others, no longer permitted to hold anything but my hair. Just another pair of bobby pins; purged of the memory.

When he comes back, there will be 17 weeks between us. 17 weeks since I dropped those bobby pins on my nightstand.

We’re more than halfway there. Mercifully, the time has passed quickly. Gratefully, I can say that we’re doing okay. Under the circumstances – complicated by every little thing that could possibly cause complications, it seems – we really are doing okay.

That’s all I want, really, when he comes home. For it to be 17 weeks and still okay. And 18 weeks. And 19 weeks.

When we reach 17 weeks - when he finally comes home - it will be 50 weeks since this all started. Nearly a year.

And I am attached.

Thursday, October 20, 2011

My concussion

Have any of you noticed the heavy coverage concussions have been getting from the news media lately? It seems like every time I turn around, somebody is reporting on head injuries in the NFL or NHL or youth sports.

Maybe it’s just me. I always have a hard time determining if what seems like a strong presence in the news is actually a strong presence or if it just seems that way because it is a topic that I am invested in.

I don’t believe I’ve ever written in depth about my Really Big Concussion. I’m sure that I’ve mentioned it – the time following that concussion was a pretty significant period and it certainly still factors into my life (mostly how nervous I get about headaches and the paranoia that follows any time I’m knocked in my head during my various sporting endeavors) – but considering how long I have been blogging (7 years as of next month, OMG) it is high time that I give my Really Big Concussion its due.

I was a junior in high school. I had just turned 16. I was playing in a soccer game. My friend Heather’s mom drove me to the game; my parents were in Toronto for the weekend. And I got hit in the head. It wasn’t in a fantastic or dramatic away. I didn’t bash my head against someone else’s. I didn’t collide with the goalpost. I was just standing too close when a girl from the other team drilled the ball. I turned my head to avoid taking the ball right on the nose and that was it. Concussion.

I went out of the game, but it was very briefly. I seem to recall that we didn’t have any substitutes – it was a Saturday afternoon during homecoming season and some of my teammates had missed the game to get beautified before their school’s dance. So I went back into the game.

That’s what you did then – when concussions weren’t the red flag that they are now. You went back into the game because why wouldn’t you? You’re not bleeding. There’s no visible bruising or swelling. And your team is short a player. Of course you’re going to go back into the game.

I have absolutely no idea if we won or if we lost.

I remember being back at the house that night, laying on the couch (Aunt Lynn was staying with me and Meg) and feeling pretty crappy but, I don’t know, not remarkably crappy. I was bitchy and a little out of sorts, but I wasn’t dizzy or vomiting or otherwise unable to function.

I don’t remember telling my parents about getting my bell rung. But it was just a day or two after they had returned from Toronto – I can’t recall, exactly – that my mom took me to my pediatrician. She diagnosed it as a concussion.

During the months following my concussion, I slept exceptional amounts. My alarm clock would go off in the morning and, soon after I got out of bed, I would know if I would be going to school. Some days I would be perfectly fine. And some days – a lot of days – I would tell Mom that I wasn’t going to school and go right back to sleep.

After sleeping the whole night, I would sleep away the whole day. I would get up around the time Meg got home from middle school.

What’s weird – and a testament to how well my parents handled the situation – is that I never felt like I was sick. Obviously, I knew that I didn’t feel well, but I didn’t feel like The Sick Kid. I wasn’t particularly worried. I just knew that some days I just couldn’t do it and I would go back to bed and sleep it away. I felt shitty sometimes but I wasn’t concerned. I didn’t worry.

I missed a ton of school. I would be interested to see how many days I missed, actually, but it definitely added up to at least a few weeks. My teachers each got a note about my condition, apparently. I didn’t know it at the time, but I saw it in my file before I graduated. Along with a note about when I was out of class after my uncle died. Weird.

I saw a neurologist and had an EEG and was prescribed some drugs – I remember being slightly shocked when my mom told me that one was an antipsychotic that was also used in the treatment of headaches.

But I stayed the same.

And my mom made me an appointment for a second opinion – some exceptionally fancy neurologist at UM who couldn’t see me for weeks – and I never went. Eventually, I stopped missing school. Eventually, the headaches went away. Eventually, I felt fine.

Since that time, I’ve had some close calls. I have had those collisions – on the soccer field, on the hockey rink – that have left me a little shaken and a lot scared. I love the sports, I love the activity, but I am genuinely afraid that it could happen again. And now, as an adult, I don’t have the luxury of taking endless days off to sleep away the post-concussion syndrome. It’s scary.

And so are all of the reports on how sports concussions are coming back to haunt the athletes who suffered them years and years ago. I read about all of the problems that former professional and collegiate hockey and football players have and it scares the hell out of me.

Not that there’s anything that can be done. Nothing that fear or doctor’s appointments or healthy doses of paranoia that come with every significant headache can cure.

It’s just something that I’m aware of. Always, always aware of. A piece of my past that may also be a piece of my future. There is no changing that.

Wednesday, October 19, 2011


I just got to work and, when I got to my desk, I unzipped my tote bag and I noticed a very big gaping hole where my lunch bag usually sits.

I flew into a fit of rage, beyond pissed at myself for forgetting my lunch at home. A lunch, mind you, packed so at the very last minute that it threatened to make me late. (Because I had to stuff my morning off with the last few chapters of the book I’m reading for work, a trip to the gym, a run to the grocery store, the beginnings of a pot of soup and at least 20 minutes scrolling through Pinterest in a dreamlike state.)

The worst part about forgetting my lunch, I immediately determined, was that there is nowhere nearby where I can grab something that is both fast – I only have 30 minutes for lunch and I often don’t even take that – and edible.

Which made me even more pissed.

And then I remembered that I stopped in the lunch room on my way to my office, tucking my lunch safely away in the refrigerator before skipping off to work.

Which is pretty much illustrative of how my entire life is these days. PANIC! followed by the realization that I am freaking out for absolutely no reason. Again.

Tuesday, October 18, 2011

Jobs and love

When Lucy called me on my birthday I casually mentioned the birthday wishes sent from Colleen. A generic text message. Exactly what I was expecting and therefore not the slightest bit disappointing.

But it enraged Lucy - who can take all of Colleen's crap but couldn't stand seeing her treat me so poorly - and she promptly called Colleen to chew her out.

Maybe that's where Lucy is a better person than I am. She is brave enough to call and yell and make her voice heard, rather than identify the pattern and announce the relationship irreparably broken and unworthy of any further attempts at mending.

Lucy called Colleen and pointed out how awful she had been. And Colleen heard her, amazingly. Or so it seems. We'll see if she keeps it up.

Lucy saw her over the weekend. For the first time since June.

At some point in their conversation, Colleen said that one of the reasons that she disappeared was because it was hard for her to be around me and Lucy, because we had what she didn't.

I had to have Lucy repeat the story twice. What? What is is that I have? Lucy's life - Lucy's life I can imagine envying, with her adoring husband and her good job and her adorable house and her well-behaved dog and her baby on the way.

But mine? Mine? It's been hours since I spoke with Lucy and I still don't understand it. I have a job. A decent job that I feel lukewarm about. She has someone who loves her. (Yeah, I think he's a loser but I'm not the one one in the relationship with him.)

I have a job. She's in love.

Let's just skip the part where I draw comparisons.

Monday, October 17, 2011

The Half Marathon Report

I consider myself a reluctant runner but secretly I love it.

I loved this weekend.

I loved driving down to the expo with Meg and collecting our bib and our shirt and being all crowded in with hundreds and hundreds of other runners and seeing all of the vendors and feeling the excitement that rippled through the room. I loved stuffing myself with pasta. I loved Saturday night with Meg, sitting in her room at Mom and Dad’s and helping her pick out her racing outfit. I loved the quiet, early morning drive downtown. I loved standing at the starting line, waiting anxiously with my wave. I loved seeing all of the spectators cheering on their loved ones – the little kids with their signs for their mom? I loved them the most. They made me cry. I loved having a familiarity of the route that I didn’t have last year. I loved still having legs with a few miles remaining, being able to push it to the end. I loved how my playlist, set to shuffle, seemed to pull out the right songs at just the right time.

I loved crossing the finish line. I loved seeing Meg when she crossed the finish line. I loved being wrapped up in a runner’s high and that silly foil warming blanket.

I loved finding my parents and seeing their signs. (Meg got to see them when she ran by, but somehow I didn’t see them – and they didn’t see me.)

I loved the shower I took back at the hotel. The best shower of my life. And I loved the brunch that we had a few hours later, where Meg and I insisted on wearing our medals with our dresses because we do immature things like that just because we can.

I loved reading all of the inspirational stories in the paper this morning. I love that I am not unmanageably sore, just a little achy in a good sort of a way.

You know what I didn’t love? When Meg pulled up the race app and punched in our names and pulled up my time.

More than 7 minutes better than last year, yes. But 30 measly seconds: just 30 DAMN SECONDS over my goal.

That hurts.

It hurts in a way that has me looking up races and consulting my calendar. It hurts me so bad that I want to try again.

Sunday, October 16, 2011

New Accessory

Half marathon: done.

PR: achieved.

Up next: brunch.

Saturday, October 15, 2011

Carbs, Pumas, Live Stats and This Girl

Who has her bib number and race packet? This girl. Meg and I met in the afternoon (she didn’t have school, I didn’t have work) and made the trip downtown to pick up our race essentials. We also stopped at the hospital to pick up the disc of the ultrasound Meggie had on her collar bone earlier this week. Which was interesting. Being at a hospital right in the heart of the D. Very, very interesting.

Who is fashionably wearing black Pumas with her dress pants at work today? This girl. I will be the first to admit that it is a very, very attractive look. A look that I would avoid at all costs, except on the eve of a half marathon when all I want is a pair of fresh legs to run on in the morning.

Who is carb loading in preparation for her race tomorrow? This girl. How is this different from how I eat any other day? It’s not.

Who thinks that The Coach is the coolest dude around? This girl. The good weekend we had rolled into a good week and is rolling into another good weekend.

Who is totally, totally bummed because The Coach can’t come home for Thanksgiving? This girl. Enough said. I’d be hopping on a plane sometime in the next month if there was any way that I could, but my work schedule has already been set for November and I don’t feel established enough to beg for an amendment. Plus, I have a baby shower to throw, a move to make and a 10k to run. I’m just hoping the month goes by quickly. He’ll be back pretty early in December and it sucks but that’s just how it has to be.

Who is working instead of watching the UM/MSU football game but should be watching the UM/MSU football game? This girl. This girl should be on a couch – or maybe a barstool – somewhere, nervously cheering for her Wolverines while dressed from head to toe in maize and blue. And this girl should smarten up and start requesting really important game days off. Unprofessional? Please. What would you call obsessively checking the live stats all afternoon?

That’s what I thought.

And this working business is for the birds. I plan to give it up the minute David Beckham and I are married.

Friday, October 14, 2011

So Midwestern, So in the Kitchen: August & September

This resolution, this resolution to make one big meal every week? August and September were rough. I blame The Coach.

But I wasn't completely out of the kitchen.

(Whether or not I was crying in the kitchen is another question entirely.)

So I might as well show you what I managed to cook.

Via some really, really awful pictures. Oh well.

Left - Broccoli, Tomato and Mozzarella Stromboli...that I made into calzones. When Meg and Mom were in California, I made these up for me and Dad. For some reason (and that reason is my lack of skill with dough of any kind) they morphed from stromboli to calzones. Whatev. Tasty? Yes. Beautiful. Nope. I found the recipe via the Everyday Food app I have on my iPhone. Plugged in a few things that were in the refrigerator and picked a recipe from a list. Technology is cool.

Middle - Coconut Rice with Mango: Not exactly mango sticky rice, but it tasted awfully good during a time when not much did.

Right - Baby Breakfast Quiches: I found this recipe on Pinterest and decided to go with it because I was really, really sick of what I was making for breakfast. (This happens to me sometimes.) These just are not beautiful little buggers, so I didn't even bother with a picture. (Sorry, person I stole the picture from.) They were pretty decent: I like a really high protein, easy breakfast and these fit the bill.

Left - Linguine with Tapenade, Tomatoes, and Arugula: wasn't awesome. Partially because I made it in a robotic daze after The Coach left. Partially because I used whole wheat noodles and they were just sort of clumpy and blah. It just was not all that fantastic. I expected more, as I always do from Everyday Food recipes.

Middle - Cupcakes: I threw these together in an hour before going over to Liz's house one night. Nothing special, really, except that, after frosting in buttercream, I dumped them into some colored sugar on hand and they looked sparkly. Here's a way to make a cupcake more appealing: make it purple and also sparkly.

Right - Coconut Chicken: another recipe I stumbled across on Pinterest. The picture sold me. Also the simplicity of the recipe. So, so easy. Quite delicious. I didn't make the dipping sauce; I cheated and got something suitable from the grocery store and it made me right happy and took practically no work which made me right happier. Then, I had ingredients left over and shrimp in my freezer so I made coconut shrimp one night, too. Equally as delicious.

And that, friends, is the story on my post-departure adventures in the kitchen.

I've been a cooking fool this month - and I'm trying to empty out my pantry via stuffing my face. There is definitely more to come.

Thursday, October 13, 2011

Look at this dog

I found this picture on my phone.

I love it.

I'm pretty sure I took it the weekend that The Coach left. It might have been the weekend after.

E spent both of them chillaxing with me on the couch and on the bed, keeping me company while I drowned my brain in books and horrible, horrible television programming.

This brown dog (and her yellow counterpart) is a sad girl's best friend.

Wednesday, October 12, 2011

Same ol' study skills

I was selected to represent my building in this committee that is doing a pretty cool thing.

I know that’s vague.


In addition to being cool, it involves the entire community. The committee consists of a bunch of community representatives who come from a variety of backgrounds, and we’re making some decisions on some things.

Pretty sure that’s still vague.


Part of my involvement in the committee is reading three books. Big f’ing deal, right? Right. I had six weeks to read them, dating back to early September when I picked up the three paperbacks at one of our committee meetings.

At the time I received the books, I was in the middle of reading something else and I decided that I would finish the something else and then start on the books because I am not a person who enjoys reading multiple books at a time.

And now I definitely need to be through these books in 10 days and – it’s true, you guys – I’m halfway through the first one.

I don’t like being told what to read.

And then I don’t read it. Or I do, but it is just the slogging, painful read of my undergraduate years. Where I can be distracted by anything and everything and no excuse is too pathetic to keep me from reading.

Now I have 10 days to read three books. Well, two and a half books. Which wouldn’t be a problem if they were two and a half books that I wanted to read but, as we know, they really aren’t and WHY HAVE I NOT LEARNED?

Seriously. Now that I have, like, aged 10 years and finished graduate school and held several Big Girl Jobs, you think that I would be a little smarter than I was when I was 19 and suffering through English 229. And you would be wrong.

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

A family affair

My mom and dad were always, always extremely supportive of my athletic endeavors. They supported Meg’s athletics with just as much enthusiasm. And then we graduated and they were over it.

When I finished playing high school soccer, they were through with watching me on the soccer pitch. When Meg dropped out of soccer after a year of playing in college, they were officially no longer soccer parents. When she finished college hockey, they were done with sitting in cold rinks.

We both still play soccer – on the same team – but we can rarely cajole them to our games. We’re both playing hockey and just believe me when I say that they aren’t champing at the bit to get to those games, either.

They’re pretty much over it. And I don’t blame them.

We both still ask, though. We invite them to watch us – together! United as sisters! – play soccer. And we invite them to our hockey games, too, but it’s much more likely that I’ll go to Meg’s game or she’ll go to mine than for either of our parents to show up at either of our games. And it’s perfectly fine. They put in their time as sports parents. And we don’t need an audience.

But we might still like one.


Now, I would never expect my parents to come and watch our half marathon this weekend. It starts at 7:00 am. And what are they going to do? Stand on the side of the road for hours waiting to see us for 15 seconds? It sounds fun, right?

Wait. Maybe it does sound fun.

What if, the day before the race, you have lunch at your favorite restaurant? And then you check in to a posh downtown hotel. Maybe head down to the bar to watch the UM/MSU game (Go Blue!). Dinner reservations at one of the city's best restaurants at 7:45 pm.

And then, the next morning, all you have to do is roll out of bed and out on to the streets to watch your girls run.

Maybe meet them at the finish line. Maybe head back to your hotel and get another hour of sleep. Meet your girls back at your room, where they’ll shower (and bitch about how sore/tired they are) before you all head off to a fancy-schmancy brunch.

Combine it with the hotel and the dinner and the getaway aspect and watching a half marathon doesn’t sound half bad, does it?

That’s how I sold it to my mom, anyway, before booking the room and making the reservations. She gave the weekend to my dad as a birthday present.

And that’s how I tricked those suckers into watching me and Meg run the half marathon.

My birthday gift to my father will be a poster board and a marker. If he’s going to watch, he might as well make us a sign, too.

Monday, October 10, 2011

The typical Monday ramblefest

Fact: Monday really sneaks up on you when you work on Saturday and Sunday. And Friday, too.

On a normal week, I am scheduled to work on either Friday or Saturday. I work one Sunday per month, too.

And I still sub, occasionally, at my old ‘brary job. Last week happened to be a week in which I was scheduled for a Friday/Sunday weekend, which sandwiched a Saturday that I had committed to subbing for a few hours.

Plus I watched Meg coach her team in a game on Friday night.

Plus I had my family birthday party on Saturday night.

Plus I ate a piece of German chocolate cake, a piece of caramel apple pie and a piece of strawberry rhubarb pie at my family birthday party. (I am training for a half marathon, after all.)

Plus I spent the night at Mom and Dad’s on Saturday night because my cousins Emma and Paige were spending the night. And also because I was there very late on account of Emma locking her keys in her car, which resulted in me having to call a locksmith friend of mine and my mother suggesting that I trade my, um, goods for his locksmith services. (Not necessary.) (I gave him a slice of caramel apple pie instead.)

Plus I went to the rink to watch Meg play last night.

Plus I was a maniac about creating the invitations for Lucy’s shower – which I’m actually really, really pleased with – complete with matching wraparound address labels because I am totally neurotic. That whole process was a casualty of the time I spend on the internet gazing at pretty things. As the whole baby shower will be, obviously.

Plus I had a really, really great weekend with The Coach. Which is sort of a strange statement to make, I know, because he was (unfortunately) not here, so just trust me when I say that some weekends (and some weeks and some days and some hours) are just better than others.

Hectic nature of the weekend considered, I suppose I shouldn’t have been all that shocked that I never found time to blog. And that I didn’t read a single page of the book I’m trying to plow through for work. Or that it took me nearly two hours to get up and really get going this morning.

The next six weeks – culminating with turning in the keys to my apartment and movin’ in with cousin Liz – are going to be crazy insane busy. And I am crazy insane excited. I do better at this pace. Especially with The Coach being gone. Fill up my calendar. No time to sleep = no time to weep.

Friday, October 07, 2011

Freak Me Out 101 – an easy A

Were you looking to make me nervous? To be the subject of conversations that start with “hey, if I ever end up dead or missing...”? To be the reason that I want to pound my head against the desk on a regular basis?

Was that an enthusiastic yes? Well, do I have great news for you, creepster. It’s easy!

Be a regular at my job and be a creepy old man and wear a track suit every day and refer to me as your girlfriend (as in, “hey! There’s my girlfriend!”) even though I am not your girlfriend and have refused to give you my phone number (or take yours) each of the three times that you’ve offered it and you will freak me out. Say to me “hey, your birthday is coming up, right?” even though I have never told you when my birthday is and you will freak me out. Notice and comment when my hair is different and you will freak me out. Wave to me in the parking lot, show up every day (occasionally come twice in one afternoon) and ask me when I get off of work for the day. You’ll freak me out. And probably have me convinced that you're going to kill me.

Just don’t actually kill me, please. My to-do list is really long and I just do not have time for such foolishness.

Thursday, October 06, 2011

Playing brave

You know how The Coach came into my life and I knew that he would inevitably leave it and then, as expected, he did and I crumbled? It was pretty awful.

After a few weeks of moping, I picked myself up and I brushed myself off and I put on my best impression of a girl who could handle the situation that I was in. A girl who could see that he was chasing dreams and who could accept that our relationship was only temporary and a girl who could be strong and brave and realistic.

It wasn’t who I was; it is who I pretended to be.

We said our goodbyes 8 weeks ago. Just this week, I have started to feel like I have finally given up the act. I have finally abandoned putting on the brave face. I am finally in the place where I need to be – where I know that he is busy being important and doing great things and where I can be happy that he has such a wonderful opportunity instead of quietly, selfishly wishing that he was here with me. Here with me where he would be miserable and sad and not excelling at doing what he loves.

I was holding on so tight – to him and to us and to what I thought that we should be and to how often I thought that we should talk and to how sad I thought that I should feel. I couldn’t breathe. I couldn’t think. I couldn’t function. All I could do was hold on. All of my energy was focused on maintaining a steady, enduring grip. And on putting on my brave face.

Maybe two months was what I needed. Maybe 8 weeks is what it takes my heart to let go. Maybe this week is just a fluke – maybe Monday will come and my heart will hurt worse than it did on the day that he left town.

I hope not.

I rather like this new normal. Where he can be a part of my world instead of the object around which it revolves.

Wednesday, October 05, 2011

Spoiled Brat Birthday: v. 29

Yes, yes I am so classy that I must recap that gifts that I received for my recent birthday.

So, Lucy went completely over the top and bought me a fabulous white leather Kate Spade tote. This isn’t the exact tote – I think the image is from an earlier collection – but it is awfully close. It has these fantastic compartments that hold a paperback just perfectly. What’s not to like about that?

My father has recently discovered that he works just a few minutes from Tiffany’s. He has also recently discovered that he, despite being a man, is fully capable of purchasing gifts for other people. (Up until the disaster that was his life last fall, my mom bought each and every gift with the exception of gifts for her, which Meg and I always picked out.)

As a result, I got this bracelet that matches the earrings that I got from Grandma for Christmas. Lovely.

Meg bought me this shirt. I really wanted it because I find it really, really funny.

It is a play on the other Ann Arbor shirts. The Ann Arbor shirts that are not really, really funny and aren’t worn by people who like Ann Arbor. (Jerks.)

Meggles also got me this Puma jersey. Probably because she couldn’t justify buying it for herself. It reminds us of our trip to Africa, and that makes us happy. It’s supposed to represent the red dirt that African soccer players get on their jerseys and shorts – so unlike the highly manicured fields that teams from other countries play on. It isn’t something that I’ll really ever wear, but I love it nonetheless.

And finally, new bedding. So excited about my new bedding. Fancy new bedding for my fancy new bedroom in my fancy new house that I’m sharing with my fancy cousin Liz. Pretty excited to upgrade from my current bedroom décor (which is just juvenile enough to irritate me) right as I’m moving in with Liz – so I can get everything all cute and adorable all at once.

I am now on the lookout for the perfect grey throw pillows. And a bed skirt. And some sort of an alternative to a headboard because I really hate the one that I have. And some sort of magical storage that lets me cram all of my crap into my room at Liz’s house without it looking like a cluttered dorm room inhabited by a hoarder in training. And new bookshelves. And time. A significant amount of otherwise unoccupied time that will allow me to make a seamless transition from my apartment to Liz’s house while also throwing Lucy a baby shower and playing hockey and watching new episodes of Gossip Girl.

Tuesday, October 04, 2011

Very Important Components to Success

In 13 days, I will be writing about how sore and miserable I am because, in 12 days, I am running my second half marathon.

When I ran the same half marathon last year, I ran a really decent race up until the last three or so miles, in which I totally tanked. It was a crash and burn of massive proportions, likely due to the fact that I hadn’t completed any training runs over 10 miles. This year, I have been better about squeezing in longer runs even though it is oftentimes the last bloody thing that I feel like doing.

Positive of longer runs: I am definitely more fit.

Negative of longer runs: the overuse injury that reared its ugly head after last fall’s half marathon is back with a vengeance.

I could barely make it through four miles yesterday.

(To be fair, I had cranked out quite the run the day before.)

Which does not leave me feeling awesome about the 13.1 miles I have to run on race day.

But I’m going to rest a lot and ice a lot and consult my personal physical therapist student (that would be my sister, Meg) a lot and do the very best that I can do and hope that it’s enough to get me across the finish line in 2:00 or less.

Since I will be doing a lot more thinking about running than actually running in the 11 days that lead up to my race, I have more time to focus on what is really important:
a. What I am going to wear
b. Crafting the perfect race playlist

While I have sufficient amounts of adorable workout clothes that I could choose from – but will probably buy something new anyway because that’s how I roll – I am struggling a little bit more with the playlist. In nearly every trip to the gym since last year, I have listened (and listened and listened and listened) to last year’s playlist. It is stale. It will not suffice. I have downloaded a bit here and there, but I’m nowhere near filling 2+ hours of what would otherwise be the sound of my own shortened breath.

Help me out here. Don’t hold out on me, you guys. What’s your favorite workout jam?

And, while we’re focusing on the most important components to my race success, I have another question: how should I do my hair?

Sunday, October 02, 2011


I started the day with an adorable miniature cake from my adorable miniature grandmother.

I finished the day with peanut butter mousse and banana ice cream, served with caramel sauce and salted roasted peanuts.

In between, I watched football. I did laundry. I opened presents and did a bit of planning for Lucy's baby shower and talked to The Coach and smiled at each phone call and text message and Facebook post that came in. I went for a run. I cuddled with my favorite dogs. And spent time with my favorite people. All while being shocked - genuinely shocked - by my advancing age. 29! How did this happen?

Saturday, October 01, 2011

Yes, I've lost it

I turn 29 tomorrow.

This is shocking.



Seriously, you guys. I watched Maria Menounos talk about how she’s freezing her eggs because she’s 33 and I guess that’s old but not too old to drop $10,000 on the harvesting/freezing process and she’ll magically get pregnant when she feels like getting pregnant. (I’m sure that’s, like, fail proof.) (And why does she need to discuss this on television?) And then some other crap on the rapid deterioration of the eggs that Maria says I should be harvesting.

Also I swear all of my friends are pregnant. Which is of course not true but LUCY IS and Lucy is Lucy and my sun practically revolves around our friendship so naturally it feels like everybody is pregnant. When in reality it is just her and Heather. And this girl who I played soccer with. And this one girl who I kind of know from work. Plus yesterday I saw Liz’s friend’s Sumo baby and she is so cute and so chubby that I almost stole her.

Why, yes, this is panic mode. Thank you for noticing.

When you turn 29 as in almost 30 you have to evaluate your life and your timelines and what is realistic WHEN YOU ARE SITTING AROUND WITH YOUR EGGS GOING BAD and also, hi, I have such awesome luck with finding boyfriends, let alone husbands, let alone baby daddies. This won’t be an issue at all!

I turn 29 tomorrow and this is what I conclude happens when you turn 29. You freak out. About eggs and babies. And then you take your birth control pill at exactly 9:15.

(This is the part where I acknowledge that I am obviously a little bit insane. And clearly a little self-centered. But have nothing but respect for: parents, those who want to be parents, those who never want to be parents, those trying to conceive, those unable to conceive, those working so, so hard to conceive and anyone who has ever been a baby. I’m not trying to be disrespectful of anyone else's situation. I am just feeling old in my ovaries.)
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