Wicked Wind

Ah, a night of having no power again. Why is it that everytime we lose power it’s at each of the far extremes in weather? Last summer it was in the middle of the night with smoltering heat. Last night we had a rude awakening at 2am when the temperature is 12 degrees with a wind chill of -11 degrees and the winds a howling. We’re not talking a little wind. We’re talking wicked wind. The kind that freezes your face off and knocks you off of your feet.

The electric flickered at 12am and we had no issues. Then at 2am there was a loud crack and glowing lights sparking outside our window. We ran to the window and looked out the blinds to find our neighbors tree had split and was lying in the street. At the same time it was pulling on powerlines and with every gust of wind there were sparks and green light. Everytime there were sparks we lost our power. After a minute the powerline must have totally gave way because it stopped sparking and we lost complete power. Unsure what to do we called 911. I know the electric company asks you to call a specific number but come on, are you going to go searching through your file cabinet to find the number at 2am in the pitch dark? Of course we were worried about our power but we wanted to make sure that the live wire would be addressed. After 15 minutes a police officer showed. I can only hope that if it were a more serious incident they’d be there faster. Dunno though. Hopefully I’ll never have to find out. The police left and within an hour a crew had arrived. I’m figuring they just assessed the damage and put up barricades because as of this moment we still have downed powerlines, a tree in the middle of the street, and no power. We did get more sleep than expected. Of course I was up mostly thinking through how to get ready in the morning and taking the animals elsewhere with having no power and no heat. Just piecing it all together. Thankfully I don’t go into work until noon today. However, I still woke up with David at 6am and am currently with the dogs at the ‘rents house. I debated whether to take the cats to work for comfort but as of now they seem content in our 60 degree house. I’ll check on them in a bit.

This weather is a far cry from yesterdays. With all of the wicked wind and freezing temperatures the local schools have been cancelled for the day. My only guess is that we’re not the only ones without power, with the possibility of other downed trees and powerlines. However, our neighbors less than a block away have power. We must be in a different grid or something. I can only hope that we’ll have power by the afternoon. Cross your fingers.

Update: Upon checking back at the house at 9am we still didn’t have power and the temperature in the house was down to 56 degrees. When I checked back at 11am we had power and the temperature was slowly increasing. As of this point (8pm) we are finally back up to temperature. Here’s a picture of the tree that fell. Really, the picture doesn’t do justice as it’s too dark and you can’t see half of the tree. But given that it was 6am and blistery cold it’s the best I could do.

Eight Point Five And Feelin’ Fine

Good Sunday evening to you all. Oh where does the time go? If you’re not doing one thing, you’re doing the other. Right? On Friday night we met up with Jen, Joe, and Emma for dinner. We hadn’t really seen or spent time with them in awhile, so it was great to catch up. As with so many other things in life, we get wrapped up into what’s around us, whether it’s school or just normal things around the house, and sometimes forget to do all of the other things that we enjoy, like hanging out with them.

On Saturday we got most of our running around done in the morning so we could “chill” the rest of the day. That included going to the laundromat with mom so we could wash our comforters. That’s the downside of having a king-size bed. It calls for a huge comforter that I can’t wash at home. And ya’ll know me, I clean and wash things like crazy, especially with the animals. The comforter is just a hassle. We always make the bed (I won’t leave the house without it being made) We also use a thinner quilt and leave that on top and tend to just leave the comforter nicely folded at the end of the bed. If we know we’re having company and will be showing them around the house we tend to put the comforter fully on the bed. Well, about a month or so ago one of the animals got sick in bed making a mess of the comforter. So needless to say the comforter has been folded in the corner waiting to be taken to the laudromat since then. When mom said that she had to wash theirs at the laundromat I hopped on it and suggested we go together. So mom and I accomplished our goal on Saturday. Thankfully it went fast and we had good company with eachother. However, even with their gigantic washers I felt like I had to push and shove to get the comforter into the washer. I ask myself, is this comforter really worth it?? I want to get rid of it. Of course when I got home David suggested that we actually start to use the comforter, meaning we sleep with it. Ugh. Hey, as long as he agrees to taking it to the laundromat next time. Nothing much else happened the rest of the day. David’s Sprint contract is finally finished (yes!) so we ordered him a new phone through Verizon. I will still have Sprint until my contract is finished (June) but we have officially started to make the change from Sprint to Verizon. Thank God. We stayed home Saturday night and watched the movie Miracle, the movie about the US hockey team. It was a good movie that didn’t disappoint.

I woke up at a decent time this morning and got some school work out of the way including some quizzes. After that David and I hit the streets for our long run of the week. We weren’t sure how long David would last due to the cold and poor circulation in his feet. He last about 3 miles but then had to head home. As for me I continued on and finished at 8.5 miles. Good to go. I also ran without music and was pleasantly surprised at how well I did. Knowing that I won’t be able to run the half marathon with music I’ve been inserting “no music running days” here and there in my schedule. I want to make sure that I’m not dependant or rely on my music to keep me going. Once again, it felt good throughout the run. It’s amazing when you pass a certain point and it’s as though your body just glides along. I’m not saying I’m a smooth runner by any means but your body shifts into autopilot. It’s a cool feeling. I’ve also broken the hour barrier these past two weeks, meaning I’m out running for over an hour. It’s not as bad as I thought it could be. I keep my mind busy by taking in what’s around me. There was snow on the ground still today so I ended up running mostly on the side of the streets. I had no major issues. Only the old guy that was mad at me for running in the road and decided to beep at me. Ah well. “That’s it man. Beep your horn at me while you’re driving to church in your Sunday’s best.” Ha. No big surprise I guess.

When I got home David notified me that a movie started in 45 minutes. If I hurried we could make it on time. I did so and we ended up making it to the movies just in time. Our movie of choice? 27 Dresses. Yes, my husband took me to a chick flick, again. As I told him, I love him for so many reasons, including that he’ll watch/take me to movies. And as stated previously, he truly doesn’t mind and ends up actually liking them half the time. In addition, he’s also willing to take heat, if any, from guys around him for watching the movies. I’m truly thankful. Back to the movie, it was very good. Cute, funny, feel good. You pretty much knew what was going to happen but that’s okay. It’s nice to have a happy movie that you don’t have to think too much about every once in awhile.

This evening we had my ‘rents over for dinner. Nothing special, just figured we’d have some company. So that’s about it. Oh yeah. Nothing all that exciting, but I wanted to let you know that I stayed true to my comment on Erika’s blog. I setup a “station” in our basement for recyclables. It may need some revamping but we’ve already started to save our cans and bottles instead of throwing them away….something we should’ve been doing long ago. Hope everyone had an enjoyable and relaxing weekend.

Feel The Burn

I only have but a few moments before it’s time to head to bed, but I wanted to post a little something considering it’s been a couple days.

As you know I had jury duty on Tuesday. We went through the jury selection process and I was actually one chosen for the jury. People may be surprised, but I was glad to be summoned for jury duty and to actually be chosen to be on the jury. It was something that I had never experienced before and it was something that I thought I’d find interesting and educational at the same time. It definitely was. It was a civil case, which meant although we had to make a decision, it wasn’t something so heavy as a criminal case. The actual trial didn’t last all that long, as it started yesterday afternoon and finished this morning. We headed into delibartion and I was chosen as the foreperson. Darn notetaker. Nah. In all honesty I didn’t mind. I expected the deliberation to be swift and found that it didn’t end up being so swift after all. Thankfully we had a great group of people on jury duty. There wasn’t anyone that took offense to other’s comments and I feel everyone was still free to speak their mind. And although we were making a big decision and had the weight on our shoulders it was still an entertaining experience. Of course this is coming from someone from the “analyzer family.” Remember, I love to analyze every bit of information I receive so this kind of stuff I can get into. We delivered our verdict then got to meet with the magistrate and then the judge. Of course we were content in our verdict but at the same time you often feel it’s a lose-lose situation, given that you can’t necessarily award everything to one person or the other. You tend to meet in the middle somewhere and the parties involved aren’t 100% happy. With that being said, after speaking with the magistrate I definitely feel just in the feelings we felt and the decision that was made. This was such a great experience that I do hope to be called for jury duty again. Too bad I only receive a small compensation from the courts and nothing for work. But I guess that’s what sick times for, right?
On the running end of things, I took Monday as a rest day while David headed out into the decent weather. Once again I should’ve been smart enough to look at the weather but didn’t. On Tuesday we got snow but I once again bit the bullet, got my kicks on, and headed out. It was my first ever “snow run.” I got to have the experience of running into falling snow and having snowflakes stuck to my eyelashes. They kind of hindered my view but that’s okay. I just kept telling myself, “I’m playing in the snow.” Today’s conditions were about the same but the snow had been stepped on more, leaving more icy spots. I try to run in the street when at all possible, but oftentimes this isn’t a real good choice since they are major roads. Today my legs were definitely feeling the strain I had put on them yesterday. Even though I didn’t run a long distance the snow gave my legs a run for their money. Running on snow is the oddest sensation. I think Erika describes it quite accurately when she says it feels like you’re running in quick sand. You’re pushing but feel as though you’re going no where. It wasn’t necessarily slippery given that it was freshly fallen snow on Tuesday. When your feet hit the ground it’s solid, but when you go to push off they “slip” almost as though you’re paddling with your feet. Your legs start to burn when you’re only on your first block. Having said that I think I did pretty well. I didn’t land on my face or butt for that matter and I returned home all in one piece. As for my pace, well, I’m not going to go there.

Suck It Up

The past week I’ve been dealing with some “guilt”. It’s the same ol’ thing I’ve been battling. Realistic thought vs. Motivational thought. I’ve been wanting to get out to run but then it snows or it’s freezing out, and I feel like I can’t run. At the same time I read other’s blogs seeing how they’re out there trudging away at training. What’s the deal? Am I a sissy or should I be out running? I want to run, that’s not the question. We’ve even visited the idea of joining a gym or the Y, or taking up our neighbors invitation to use their treadmill. At least I’d still be running, which is what I want to do. But the bottom line is that I not only want to run, but I want to run outside too. I go through all of my trains of thought. I ask myself, “Is it safe to be out running?” but don’t know what to answer. I see others are doing it, so it should be safe. On the other hand I don’t want to be out there killing myself only to find that I am making a fool of myself and I shouldn’t be running. Then I try to think on another level. Maybe I’m not out there because it comes down to feeling that I’m not prepared enough minus spikes or that I think I don’t have enough warm weather gear or that I don’t think I have the knowledge of dressing appropriately. I’m sure I’ve totally lost you . I think the problem is that I’m thinking. What do you think? Haha. Oh glory, I’m whacked out. The good thing is that although my training schedule has been thrown out the window the past 2 weeks, I’m still increasing my mileage and I still feel great.

Due to all of this thinking David and I haven’t run since I last running post, which was Thursday. With the bitter weather coming I contacted our neighbor to take them up on their invitation to use their treadmill. I was unable to get in touch so just threw the idea out the window. Having not run Friday or Saturday I still knew for sure I wouldn’t be running in the frigid weather Sunday (today). But for some reason I got a bug in my butt today and wanted to get moving after having 2 days off. I knew I had to meet my goal of 6 miles for my weekend long run. As usual, I went through my process of elimination of how to go about accomplishing it. The Y was out. We still have 2 free passes but they didn’t open until 1pm. That wouldn’t work. Then I tried our neighbor one last time. Although I waited until after 10am to call I think I perturbed them by calling. In the end they said, “Ok.” but I felt as though I was putting them out so decided against that idea. It was settled. I just had to bundle my butt up for the 9 degree temperature and hit the road. I threw on my layers and was ready to go, but had to make a phone call. Once again I was back to my questioning/thinking state and wasn’t sure if what I was doing was right. (Why am I going through this stage??) I called Erika, who’ve I’ve personally made my mentor, in hopes of getting some reassurance. As expected, she was there with an open mind and a ton of help and inspiration. It was as good as if she was standing right there gently pushing me out the door. I couldn’t have asked for anyone better.

Geez! It was cold. I’m a cold-type of person so the cold really gets to me. I had 2 layers on my bottom, 3 on top, a neck gator, a hat, a hood, and 2 pair of gloves. Within a half mile I had hit what I call my “cold wall”. I had my fingers pulled out of the finger slots in the gloves and my hands were in fists, inside both sets of gloves. The neck gator was taking some getting used to. It was hard hearing myself breathe and it started to get wet and freeze. Other than that I felt pretty good. Cold, but good. Thankfully the sun was shining but I still had a bit of wind to contend with. It was then that I added my, “Good morning wind, come run with me,” talking. I just kept listening to my music and kicking it out. I was determined to meet my goal. By mile 2 I was feeling great and had settled into my pace (which ended up being slow for the day…a trade off that I will accept given the circumstances). My fingers had warmed and I had gotten the neck gator use down to a science. I’d move it up and down as I needed it. And since I was running a loop around my house, by the second loop I knew when I needed to use it and when not to. Although I was determined to meet my 6 mile goal I also had the realistic thought in the back of my mind reminding myself that if I wouldn’t be able to finish, due to the cold, then that’s the way it would be. However, by mile 4 I was telling myself, “Yep. You’re going to make it. It’s a done deal. Just finish what you started.” And just like that I had completed what I started. Frozen snot on my face and gloves, and all. Not only had I met my goal of just making exactly 6 miles and cut my route short, but I kept it up. I completely finished the route and ended with a total 6.7 miles. That’s what I’m talking about! I didn’t just meet, I exceeded. Once again, a confidence boosting run. I’m hoping that with this run my thought process will hopefully allow me to get out and run in the frigid single-digit weather easier in the future. Erika was my phone call of choice after my run today. Thank you Erika! As always, you rock.