December Kickoff

Welcome to December

I could not be happier that today is December 1st.  I love the first of the month in any time frame, but December carries with it a heightened sense of family, joy, contentment, and enthusiasm.  It could be that December includes Christmas, my birthday, and a reduced number of work days ::cough, cough 13 cough, cough::.  Focusing on what is most important about December 1st, the kickstart of a new month, I want to establish my Currently and monthly goals.

Goals

  1. Stay a week ahead on my SNHU classes.  There are 10 modules per term and I’ve been able to maintain a 1-module lead.
  2. Run four days a week.  I have two half marathons this month: the Divas Half and Jacksonville Beach Half MarathonScreen Shot 2014-12-01 at 8.02.09 AM
  3. Gratitude is the Attitude!  I want to make sure that I take the inspiration that I’ve been given by the special friends and family in my life that have shown me how to be kind, considerate, and grateful no matter what obstacles are placed before them and incorporate that in my life.  I know that I’m not unique in my tendencies to focus on the empty part of the class, but that doesn’t mean that I have to stay that way.  I will make this goal measurable by writing down three things that make me happy every day in my Bullet Journal.

december currently

loving my Thanksgiving holiday weekend with my extended family. #VeevaLV

studying nouns, verbs, descriptors, determiners, and Structuralism

enjoying the calm before the storm that is going back to work tomorrow

preparing mentally for my long run of 11 miles this morning.

wondering if I should run outside or hit up the treadmill for said 11 miles.

laughing because I always seem to need more things when I get an email that has the word “Sale” in the title.

reading a heavy selection from this pile (still):

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listening to the “Straight Talk with Ross Mathews” and “Here’s the Thing with Alec Baldwin” podcasts

thinking I’m adding more “-ing” to my December Currently to delay those 11 miles…

feeling like it’s time to get up off the couch!

See ya soon!!!

How I Spent my 12 Miles on a Treadmill

Happy World Run Day, everyone!

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World Run Day Participants celebrate the sport of running by promoting the health benefits of running to others – while running “their own course” for the day.

I signed up to participate in create-your-own race last month and today was the day to put my runner’s stride where my mouth is.  The St. Augustine Half Marathon is next week Sunday and decided my last long run with today’s “celebration.”  Unfortunately/fortunately, it was raining outside this morning, and combined with 50ish degree weather meant that I would be running on a treadmill at the gym.

The last time that I ran that distance on a treadmill was when my husband and I were in Alaska, three years ago.  I didn’t have any other real options for running longer distances when we were at St. Paul Island, so I became quite familiar with our treadmill and bedroom walls.  Some people detest running on a treadmill, but for the most part, I don’t mind it.

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Pros to Running on a Treadmill

  1. Weather isn’t a factor
  2. Running alone isn’t scary
  3. A place is provided to hold your stuff
  4. Maintaining a certain pace is taken care of for you
  5. Reassurance AKA A bathroom is always available if nature calls or texts “911”
  6. Free reading time
  7. Two words: Wifi Accessibility.  Netflix, ya’ll!
  8. People watching can be more entertaining than the same streetlights and porches
  9. Speed work on a treadmill won’t make you look like a lunatic
  10. Playing around with the incline helps prepare you for hills on race routes

Ok, Negative Nancy, I hear you saying that despite these spectacular reasons to enjoy running on a treadmill, I will share with you a first-hand account of how I spent my 1:53 this morning.

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  • Watched “Scandal” Episode 3 of Season 2 on my iPad (Netflix) – 43 minutes

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  • Read two chapters in On the Road by Jack Kerouac on my iPad (Kindle app) – 20ish minutes

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  • Watched half of Doug Benson’s comedy special, “Doug Dynasty” on my iPad (Netflix) – 25ish minutes

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  • Saw the 5-day forecast about 8 times (TVs at the gym)
  • Checked Facebook, Twitter, and email (Kindle apps)
  • Texted my husband about breakfast plans
    • Last three were collectively 15 minutes 

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Before I knew it, I was beginning my Cool Down.  I was able to quickly wipe down my machine, walk to a clean bathroom with plumbing and lacked porta potties (which is the exact recipe for running happiness), wash my face, use the facilities, and drive home.

Even if you’re not buying into my hype, at least consider this post a public service to give treadmills a second chance.

It’s Monday! What Are You Reading?

What are you reading monday

On Sunday morning, I had my long run scheduled for 9 miles, which is the longest that I have attempted to run in over 16 months.  I had two days of cross-training and strength workouts prior to Sunday, so I felt confident I would be able to complete my goal.  With one minor setback of having to calibrate my iPod nana, I was able to run those 9 miles without any issues.

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All of this to say that the remainder of my Sunday was devoted to complete one novel and starting another.

A student gave me Christopher Moore’s Fool when his English III class began to read “King Lear” two weeks ago.  I normally enjoy Moore’s writing style, but this adaptation of the bard’s great piece didn’t pique my interest as much as I had hoped.

3684856(Via Goodreads)“This is a bawdy tale. Herein you will find gratuitous shagging, murder, spanking, maiming, treason, and heretofore unexplored heights of vulgarity and profanity, as well as nontraditional grammar, split infinitives, and the odd wank . . . If that’s the sort of thing you think you might enjoy, then you have happened upon the perfect story!”

Verily speaks Christopher Moore, much beloved scrivener and peerless literary jester, who hath writteneth much that is of grand wit and belly-busting mirth, including such laurelled bestsellers of the Times of Olde Newe Yorke as Lamb, A Dirty Job, and You Suck (no offense). Now he takes on no less than the legendary Bard himself (with the utmost humility and respect) in a twisted and insanely funny tale of a moronic monarch and his deceitful daughters—a rousing story of plots, subplots, counterplots, betrayals, war, revenge, bared bosoms, unbridled lust . . . and a ghost (there’s always a bloody ghost), as seen through the eyes of a man wearing a codpiece and bells on his head.

Fool

A man of infinite jest, Pocket has been Lear’s cherished fool for years, from the time the king’s grown daughters—selfish, scheming Goneril, sadistic (but erotic-fantasy-grade-hot) Regan, and sweet, loyal Cordelia—were mere girls. So naturally Pocket is at his brainless, elderly liege’s side when Lear—at the insidious urging of Edmund, the bastard (in every way imaginable) son of the Earl of Gloucester—demands that his kids swear their undying love and devotion before a collection of assembled guests. Of course Goneril and Regan are only too happy to brownnose Dad. But Cordelia believes that her father’s request is kind of . . . well . . . stupid, and her blunt honesty ends up costing her her rightful share of the kingdom and earns her a banishment to boot.

Well, now the bangers and mash have really hit the fan. The whole damn country’s about to go to hell in a handbasket because of a stubborn old fart’s wounded pride. And the only person who can possibly make things right . . . is Pocket, a small and slight clown with a biting sense of humor. He’s already managed to sidestep catastrophe (and the vengeful blades of many an offended nobleman) on numerous occasions, using his razor-sharp mind, rapier wit . . . and the equally well-honed daggers he keeps conveniently hidden behind his back. Now he’s going to have to do some very fancy maneuvering—cast some spells, incite a few assassinations, start a war or two (the usual stuff)—to get Cordelia back into Daddy Lear’s good graces, to derail the fiendish power plays of Cordelia’s twisted sisters, to rescue his gigantic, gigantically dim, and always randy friend and apprentice fool, Drool, from repeated beatings . . . and to shag every lusciously shaggable wench who’s amenable to shagging along the way.

Pocket may be a fool . . . but he’s definitely not an idiot.

My Review: 3/5 Stars

I started reading a new-to-me book quickly after for a local book club, Where’d You Go, Bernadette by Maria Semple.

13526165(Via GoodreadsBernadette Fox is notorious. To her Microsoft-guru husband, she’s a fearlessly opinionated partner; to fellow private-school mothers in Seattle, she’s a disgrace; to design mavens, she’s a revolutionary architect, and to 15-year-old Bee, she is a best friend and, simply, Mom.

Then Bernadette disappears. It began when Bee aced her report card and claimed her promised reward: a family trip to Antarctica. But Bernadette’s intensifying allergy to Seattle—and people in general—has made her so agoraphobic that a virtual assistant in India now runs her most basic errands. A trip to the end of the earth is problematic.

To find her mother, Bee compiles email messages, official documents, secret correspondence—creating a compulsively readable and touching novel about misplaced genius and a mother and daughter’s role in an absurd world.

I’m enjoying the quasi epistolary style that Semple has chosen to tell this tale, and I was intrigued to find out how this web of emails and direct narration comes together.