Sunday, May 27, 2007
Wednesday, February 14, 2007
Not all old posts are moved over yet, but some are. I will be blogging here starting today! Thanks for your patience while I make the switch.
Monday, February 12, 2007
Jeremy Wright North American Snowshoe Championship Results
Sunday morning we checked out of the condo and drove over to Beaver Creek Ski Resort for the third race in the Beaver Creek Adventure Series, called the Jeremy Wright North American Snowshoe Championships. This is the largest snowshoe race in the world. They have a heavily competitive 10K, and a "more on the fun side" 5K. The 10Kers race for $$$, the 5Kers, for goodies! My very good friend Amy had taken the plunge and signed up for the race. This was to be her first race EVER, in any discipline. What a rock star! We met up with her at the free parking, and Troy dropped us off at the lifts. Troy went to check into our hotel in Avon, while Amy and I took two lifts up to the top of the mountain where the race was. The previous two races started at the bottom of the mountain, and therefore Troy could participate, or spectate. But the last two races are at the top of the lift and infants are not allowed on the lifts, so Troy and Annie must kill time until we are finished racing. We got dressed to race, took a small warm up, and stood around to let the nerves swell! Amy was nervous, and that made me even more nervous, but I tried to stay upbeat! The race was off! Swells of people with snowshoes all instantly on the move. The start was uphill, and not a very nice uphill. Quickly the pack broke into small groups as we trudged upwards. Somewhere between 0.5 and 0.75 miles the 10Kers took a left up some huge nasty hill while we 5Kers got to continue on a modest hill. I remember feeling tired and wondering early in the race if I was having an off day. I looked ahead of me, I could see 3 women and I thought to myself, what if those 3 are in 1st, 2nd, and 3rd. How would you feel knowing you could get them now. I sped up. We passed the 1 mile marker (15 minutes...huh). I passed a girl, she passed me back. We took a dip into a deep powder section. The powder was knee deep, not runable (not a word, I know), dang. The girl ahead gained distance on me, I gained distance on her. The 10Kers joined us again. There was a 2 mile marker (apparently for them, not for us, b/c later we passed another 2 mile marker). A water stop, I passed it without water. We dipped into more powder. I had a fast 10K lady on my heals. One step before the end of the powder section I tripped on my snowshoe and fell on my face. We both had a strong laugh about that. "You almost made it" Hahaha. More hills, bye bye 10Kers, they turned off to more hills. The real two mile marker (30 minutes), and another powder section, this time hip deep. I got stuck several times, so stuck I had to yank at my leg several times to free it. Women were told to run through the powder on the right side of the flags, men on the left, I complied (apparently the winner of the 10K did not, but they let her keep her title...hum...interesting). Out of the powder and more rolling hills, I now loose the girl in front of me to the fog, she's there, she isn't. She's far ahead, I'm all alone. Slowing down. I catch a glimpse behind me on a turn...girls behind me...close behind. I go, I go hard. Don't want to get passed...no! It works, girl in front of me gets closer. I hear the announcer, the end is close. Time to haul. I pick it up, I dial in the form. I finish. I look around, not many women. I count 3. I get in the tent for snacks and see another 2. 6th, could I be 6th? Sure enough. 6th it is. Time of 47:08 for a 5K (although, this "felt" longer than 5K). I'm high...ooh, but now getting cold, very cold. I change clothes quickly and walk back along the course to cheer for others and watch for Amy. Sure enough, there she comes, looking strong as ever, and awesome as ever. You would never know it was her first race. I watch her run to the finish, so proud of what she overcame, and what she now knows is possible.
Ahhh, the sweet taste of being done and knowing you did well...ahhh.
We ride the lift down, meet up with Troy, and grab the provided lunch. I win a pair of Atlas kids snowshoes in the raffle and we head off to have a few celebratory drinks...thanks Amy!! Awesome race!
Wednesday, February 07, 2007
CO Mountain Mama Photos
Monday, February 05, 2007
Annabelle at the Doctor
She handled her vaxs extremely well this time, much better than all previous visits. I assume it's because Troy was there and she was on "big-girl"/"make a liar out of mommy" behavior. She screamed while they administered the shots and then crawled into dads arms and promptly calmed down.
The ped would like us to work on her sleep issues and her solid food issues. She is drinking about 2X as much milk as he would like to see, and not nearly as much solids as he would hope, but he assured me that as I stop offering the milk as often and let her get a little more hungry, her appetite for solids should pick up. He also thinks as the solids pick up, so will the sleep, especially if we put our foot down and stop offering bottles at night. This is going to be tough, Troy feels it's the right direction, as do I, so we will be heading that way.
Her stats were once again hilarious, today she is 20 pounds, 2 ounces (12th percentile) in weight, and 32.5 inches (96th percentile) in height. Her head is normal, 18 inches (55th percentile).
Sunday, February 04, 2007
Frisco Gold Rush Race Results
I ran the snowshoe race at the Frisco Gold Rush today. This was the first race in my new snowshoes (pictured here) that I bought off ebay! I practiced in them a little on Saturday with my friend Amy, but apparently not enough because I tripped myself not once, not twice, but three times during the race.
The race was 7K (4.35 miles), and was a big loop from the Frisco Nordic Center. It went through some trees, and then most of it was on Lake Dillon. Everyone thought the portion on Lake Dillon would be nice and packed (or icy), but it was actually shin deep powder. The entire course was ungroomed, which was different for me, but a really good experience as well. It was hard, the added distance was hard and the terrain was tricky.
I placed 6th amongst the women, and first in the 20-29 age group. My time was 43:25, which is approximately 9:58 minute mile average. I felt really good about it, and I got a medal :)
Thursday, February 01, 2007
Taking a Step Back
Well, I loooked into a coach, went a few steps too far in that direction and now I need to step back a bit.
So, how did I get here? Here's the story: Well, I started loosing weight, and then I signed up for a race so that I would be motivated to continue my healthy exercise habits. It was fun, I enjoyed the race and I felt good afterwards. My memories of high school racing are associated with anxiety, dread, terror, pain. I didn't feel any of those feelings, so I signed up for another. Again, a very positave experience, and that started the avalanche. I trained and did what I liked on a daily basis. I found a new love...to ride my bike. I loved to hook up Annie and go explore trails, and to run errands. I felt studly, and healthy. I started racing more, doing snowshoe races and duathlons. Training where I wanted too, spinning when I wanted, resting when I wanted, and knowing that I was maintaining a healthy lifestyle.
Then I did well on some races and it went to my head. I started to think "I could be good at this" and "I SHOULD be good at this". This is way off base.
My original motivation was to obtain a healthy body, to make consistent exercise and healthy eating part of my permanent life. And, here I have gone and doven off the deep end before I knew what I was doing.
It's time to go back to my roots. Train when I want, for the events I want, at the speed I want. Maintain a blisteringly positave attitude about exercise and healthy eating. Remember that my husband, and my baby girl are my motivation, and who I ultimately report to in this world.
I am where I wanted to be 5 months ago. I got there for the right reasons, and I'm going to stay there for the right reasons as well. 5 months ago I was hoping for a change, a physical change. I got that and so much more. I got an attitude change, I got a new body, I got some new hobbies, ones that I can share with my family. I have reached my goals and I haven't even stopped to absorb the gravity of all this. I have done miraculous things, and I wanted to just blow past that and onto the next thing.
No, I will not cheet myself of this luxury. If I have hopes of making this change stick, I need to come to terms with my accomplishments. It's time to slow down and enjoy things.
Many, many, many people try every year to make the changes that I have made in 5 months, most don't make it. Most don't have the drive. Drive is not my issue, it's balance. Balance with family, life, creativity, eating. I will never be complete with my quest for balance and moderation, I must continue to train daily.
And it finally occured to me: what if I get injured? Big flippin deal, then I take a month or two off, while staying healthy: biking, swimming, or whatever, and when I am better, I jump back on the bandwagon.
Please excuse the "self-help-ness" of this post, it's more so that I can get some stuff off my chest so that I can go to sleep. I have been laying in bed for hours tossing random thoughts around in my head.
Tuesday, January 30, 2007
Monday, January 29, 2007
Also, I signed up for a TrainingPeaks account (www.trainingpeaks.com) and got to know the software pretty well. It is awesome. I was able to make the leap that I was missing in the Triathlete Training Bible because they do it for you in the software. I did the first two workouts today and they were great. They seemed appropriate for where I am at right now. I am still looking into coaching...but we'll see.
I also signed up for the Tubbs Romp To Stomp Out Breast Cancer Snowshoe Fun Run. Bring on the events!!
Posting on my New iMac
Saturday, January 27, 2007
Coaching Dilemma (LONG)
So, back to my dilemma...I think I need a coach. At the very least, I need a plan, something to stick to, to keep motivated towards, and also for safety. The mud throwing philosophy tends to get you injured in the long run. But I have a dilemma. So I talked to the triathlon coach at my gym, and for $75 a month he will design me a schedule (and nothing more), for $125 a month he will give me a schedule, 1 training session a month, and some personal contact, for $199 a month I get the schedule, 2 training sessions and unlimited contact. So, I started thinking about this and I thought WOWAH. Maybe I should pick up some books and read all there is out there, maybe I can do this schedule thing myself. So...I bought books. AND, I read the books. So there are two types of books. Ones that train you for one race (like the Triathloning for Ordinary Mortals, and the Triathlons for Women), and ones (I could only find ONE, and sort-of another) that help you put together a schedule for your whole season. I don't want to train for just one dinky race, I want to do tons. So I read from cover to cover, all 299 pages of Joe Friel's "The Triathlete's Training Bible". I was doing so good...he was guiding me through preparing an "Annual Training Schedule". All the way until page 100. Then he went psycho. I was following along perfectly, I had analyzed my goals, written objectives, determined annual training hours, broken those hours into weekly hours using periodization, determined my race schedule, determined my weight training schedule, determined my weak areas, and put together a one-line per week schedule. Then came time to break the one-line weekly overview into specific day by day workouts and he completely lost me. Mostly b/c he didn't tell us how to do it. The leap that he made was so huge, after trying to figure it out for two hours last night, I went to bed really bummed out.
So today I revisited...still lost. I don't know what to do. The leap he makes is so huge for me, that even if I ever do put something together, I'm not going to trust that I did it right. So I started looking online...I thought: maybe this "Joe Friel" dude would answer some of my questions...well, he's $1,500 per month to have him train you...so I don't think he will be answering my lowly little email. I continued looking online, and there are several other options. Let me explain. There is this website called TrainingPeaks where you can buy predesigned schedules. So again (like the books), these are one-event things, or they are really impersonal (is that a word??). Then there is personal coaching. But it's pricey (like the greenwood village coach). The cheapest I can find is $150 per month (there are two different ladies here and here for this price and I REALLY like both of their websites...there are others but I was drawn toward the women), and that gives me a schedule and unlimited access to the coach (and some other things...like bike fitting and nutritional support). There are also group programs like CWW or Team in Training. But I feel like these are also event, or 1-4 events oriented.
I am looking at 24 events on my calendar right now (these are from Feb 4 to Sept 17). Some of them are more important to me and a lot of them are just for fun, but I don't know where my passion lies right now. So what I really want to do this year is a "tour de athletica". I want to get in great shape and sample a bunch of events so that I know where the intersection of "Passion" and "Aptitude" lie for me. Is it adventure racing? Or XTERRA triathlons (offroad triathlons), or speed tri-s, or 1/2 marathons. Or is it just running? Or is my swim so bad that I should stick to duathlons? I want a sample. Then...next year I will focus on the sport that is appropriate. Also, this season, I can train with Annie in the bike Charriot, next summer things will be up for grabs a bit more. So I wanted to focus on Triathlons b/c I can train for that with my Annie-girl.
DILEMMA. Any suggestions? Help...feel free to comment!
New Car...and sickness
On another note, Annabelle got a really nasty stomach flu yesterday. She threw up twice really badly...I didn't know someone so small could throw up so much. I felt helpless, it was really sad. She just wanted to be held in my arms for hours, and we had to take multiple baths to get the puke out of her hair. Poor thing. She woke up this morning completely better and back to her old self, but several hours later Troy was exhibiting symptoms. Sure enough Troy went through the whole sickness today, puke and everything. I felt so bad for him. He told me to go test drive the car, so I took Annie and did that. Eventually I had to call him to come out and sign the papers and bring our second truck for trade, so he had to drive out and help buy the car right in the middle of the worst of it. I felt like a REALLY bad wife! I took really good care of him when we got home and now it seems the worst is over, he's gone 4.5 hours without throwing up so I think we are in the clear. I just really hope that I don't get it tomorrow...that seems to be the trend!
Wednesday, January 24, 2007
Deer Creek Canyon Park Snowshoe
Monday, January 22, 2007
Annie's New Shoes
Sunday, January 21, 2007
Frosty's Frozen 5 Mile Race
4 minutes before the race my shoelace on my Salomon shoes broke. I had to run back to the car, switch shoes, switch my YakTracks to my new shoes and whoosh...off I went. The course was rather hilly with several inches of snow covering it, but the YakTracks gave me great traction. They had lots of slow ups and slow downs. At the turn around I counted that I was in 3rd place (for the ladies). Mile 4 was an especially hard mile for me, slightly uphill. A lady passed me, and she was running really strong past me, so I let her go. I just tried to keep my pace and continue to go hard. I finished as the 4th lady, my time was 40:55.
I felt good about it. I stayed on about an 8:12 pace for the 5 miles. The last 5K I ran a pace of 7:58 so I felt this was pretty good given the conditions and the 2 extra miles over a 5K. The next race in the series is in a month and it's a 10 mile. That seems like a really long distance, so I am going to have to put in some longer runs to train for that one.
I got some major swag at this race. I won a $15 gift cert from a local running store for getting third place in my age category, and the guy representing Accelerade was there and he gave me a free tub of it (like a $20 value) and a t-shirt and a water bottle. Accelerade is a recovery drink that has a 4:1 carb to protein ratio...but that's a blog for another day.
Saturday, January 20, 2007
They started the race in a series of 8 heats, which took off 2 minutes apart. I was in the 6th heat, and heats were chosen randomly. In run 1 I was the first lady off the starting line and throughout the 1.5 miles was able to catch up to people in several of the heats ahead of me. The course was shin deep power that sent your feet every which way. I am used to this with the snowshoe racing, so I just cranked through it. I passed a lot of people walking and cussing. People seemed to hate it, and it was quite painful when your feet are going everywhere and you are fighting just to keep from falling down, but it's all about attitude, and mine was of pure fun and enjoyment.
Run-1: Approximately 1.5 miles in length. Starts on the road for approximately 0.5 miles. The road here is 100 percent snowpacked, and may be a little slippery in spots. The course then moves onto park trails which are a mix of packed snow trails, and a couple of short stretches where my footprints are the only ones. I will pack-out those stretches with snowshoes on race morning, but expect the final mile of the first run to be a fun challenge.
Oh, I said I would pack it down, but don't expect too much. It will still be very uneven. I had a blast out there today!!! Plan on a 1.5 mile time that is similar to what you would run for 2.5 miles.
Bike-1: Approximately 4 miles, of which 90+ percent is currently hard-packed snow. The final 0.5 miles into transition are a little rutted. It is supposed to be above freezing and sunny on Friday, so the snow pack may get a little slippery in spots. I would use a mountain bike if I were racing, but the decision is completely yours. I am definitely recommending that everyone stay off the aerobars!
Transition-2: The parking lot for this transition is partially plowed. I have asked to have the rest of it plowed for race day, but there may be up to 6 inches of soft powder in this transition.
Run-2: Approximately 2.5 miles in length. We have switched it from a loop to an out-and-back because it will be more runnable for everyone. From the look of things, this stretch has already been used by several hundred walkers and runners, so it is a wide, well-packed trail. I comfortably jogged it at about a 7:30 pace today.
Bike-2: Approximately 6 miles in length. Again, 90 percent snowpacked roadway.
Run-3: approximately 25-50 meters in length. Just rack your bike in the main transition and run to the finish. It will be snowpacked.
Bike 1 was fun, I was wearing my Ipod, so I matched my cadence to my songs and cranked up the resistance...just like spin class.
Run 2 was wild, the first 1/4 mile was on an icy road, then it went to a snow packed trail, but the trail was only packed WELL about 1 foot across. On the way up one of the hills a guy running downhill assumed I would step off the 1 foot packed portion for him and he ran into me so hard it knocked me off the trail, and almost knocked me down. AND I had stepped half way off for him..just thought we should split the trail...seems obvious. I yelled a *very* nasty word that starts with F and ends with "er", and took it as an excuse to run harder. The run was out and back, so I started counting how many women were in front of me, there were 4. Not that it matters, because we started in heats, so it's all a little confusing. However, since I was in the 6th heat and no woman had passed me, I knew if I passed ladies, that they were from heats before me. At the turn around in the run I passed the 4th girl, but the other three seemed to be too far ahead.
Back to the bikes, I had a really quick transition, passed a few guys just by being quicker to put on my helmit, and was off. Once again, matching my cadence with the tempo of my ipod worked wonders. I was able to pass 4 guys on the ride back.
The last run is only 30 meters, so essentially you throw your bike on the transition rack and RUN...helmet and all! For the first time in all the races I have been running I won something. At this race the race director just hands random people prizes as they finish, and he handed me an awesome Orange GoLite shirt in Women's Large, it fits perrrfect. I was sooo stoked about this and did a little happy dance at the finish line. I felt GREAT during this race. I felt like my body and mind loved the adversity. I really think I race better when the conditions are crazy, I just find it fun. Last night I was really worried about riding my bike on the ice. I fell on my bike about a month ago on the ice, and so I felt a bit skittish. But this morning I woke up feeling that "If I fall, then I fall, no bigee". And, I didn't, in fact I felt really stable on the ice.
Results came out this evening and it turns out I was the second Woman overall! My time was 1:18.17. The first woman was 7 seconds ahead, the 3rd woman was 3 behind. If only we had all been in the same heat, then we would really know who's the bomb, but with this format, I'm sure that we all had to run our races pretty much in isolation. Too Bad. I was the 29th person overall in the race (out of 115). I once again held the title of fastest woman in the fat tire division. Allthough, allmost everyone chose to ride their mountain bikes today (your classification depends on what bike you will ride for all three races, so people in the open division can choose to ride a road bike or a mountain bike depending on the conditions, whereas I MUST ride my mountain bike for all three races...I did this b/c I don't own a road bike :)...YET!).
Thursday, January 18, 2007
Races This Weekend
On Sunday I am running the Frosty's Frozen 5 Mile. This is also the second installment of the "Winter Distance Series". I didn't run the first installment though. My friend Lindsay convinced me to run the last two. She signed up for the entire series. I'm excited about the 5 mile, it's a bit longer race than the 5K's (3.1 mile) that I'm used to. Lindsay did great on the last race, and we seem to run right about the same pace, so I'm excited to run with her.
So, wish me luck this weekend. It's supposed to snow the entire weekend, so my warm weather active gear is probably going to get some good use. I am really excited that both these races are in the Denver area. I'm not quite ready to jaunt back into the mountains after the car accident two weekends ago.
Sunday, January 14, 2007
Brrrrr...Chilly Willy, and Weight Loss Numbers
In other news, I had an appointment with Prudence the dietitian on Monday and I hit my goal weight! 142! The most amazing part is that on 10/2/06 I had 29.5% body fat, and now on 1/8/07 I have 22.4%! That's a loss of 7.1% body fat! In my case that is 16.3 pounds of fat! I also lost 4.9 pounds of lean muscle mass (the good stuff), but this tends to happen. Apparently we have muscle that supports our excess fat, so when we shed the fat, the lean muscle that supports it doesn't need to be there either. I went shopping for a new pair of jeans and was able to buy a size 8 at Old Navy. In October I was wearing size 14, so that feels really good. My original goal was 20% body fat and a weight between 140-144. So, now I will continue to work on decreasing my body fat % while trying to build more lean muscle mass. Sometimes you can do this and your weight will actually go up (but body fat down). I am 100% okay with that, so we aren't going to focus on weight, now just the fat %. To tell you the truth, I am feeling pretty hot to trot. I feel good, I fit into my clothing, and I am loving the new tone I have developed with all the exercise I am doing. I absolutely love going to my new gym (I don't think I shared that I joined the gym). I do a lot of spin classes which is really building my leg strength, my endurance, and my speed. I love the Palates Mat classes for my core strength, and they have treadmills that have little TVs in them with cable! We don't have cable, so this is a huge treat. I must admit though, my favorite is that I get to sit in the hot tub that is inside the women's locker room when my workout is over. The thing is like the size of my living room, and it's such a treat to relax and let the worries of the day pass over.
I have started putting together a list of all the races that I want to do this summer and it's getting a bit insane. There are so many possibilities, it's hard to choose. They all look so fun! Adventure Races, Triathlons, 1/2 marathons, I just know that all of this is possible for me now. I am lucky that Troy is so supportive and loves to come along to races and hang out with Pookette in his arms and cheer me on. Lucky, lucky me!
Ooh, as a last note, apparently channel 9 news showed the following photo of Annie and I on the news several weeks ago. Troy sent it in during the blizzard, and a good friend called several days ago to tell us that she saw us on the news. So here is our famous photo:
Monday, January 08, 2007
On the Pot
Snowshoe Race and Crazy Day
Troy and I decided to continue onto the race. We arrived at the Beaver Creek resort at 10:50! I grabbed my stuff and ran to the starting line (with a quick bathroom break). And off went the race. The adrenaline helped me to run hard and fast. My recent training has been paying off b/c my body and muscles felt really strong and ready to put out a good effort. The course had lots of deep snow single-track, I love that stuff. The 5K course gained about 800 feet in elevation and there were a lot of racers. The race was awesome, the weather was great, a little chilly, but clear as a bell. When I came through the finish Troy was cheering with Annie, it felt great to see them there and I thought about how lucky we all were to be safe. Troy said it looked like I was the 11th woman, and the time on my watch was 37:25. We then went to the Beaver Creek Village for the provided post-race lunch, and then packed up and headed home. We left the parking lot at 2:15.
We then proceeded to sit in bumper to bumper traffic for a long time. At one point it took over an hour to go 3 miles. About 2.5 hours into our drive Annie started to fuss. The poor girl had been so patient today, but she was clearly mad at the situation. I couldn't seem to calm her down and then all of the sudden she threw up everywhere...all over the car and herself. She was choking b/c she was in her car seat which has a slight recline. I quickly pulled her out of the seat as Troy was frantically pulling the car over to the side of the road (we were only going like 10mph anyways). Needless to say everyone needed a change of clothes and there was lots of mopping up to do before we could continue driving home. After we got her clean clothes, a clean diaper, and a fresh bottle she fell asleep clutching her grinch stuffed animal tightly! We eventually made it home at 7pm. A drive that usually takes 2hrs 15 minutes had taken 4 hours and 45 minutes. Whew! Annie went straight to bed and Troy and I stayed up reading our books and reliving our crazy day!
The race in Beaver Creek next month should be a better situation. We are staying in a condo at Winter Park the Friday and Saturday before the Sunday race to have an early Valentines Day with our friends Chris and Taylor. Then the race will be Sunday and that evening we are tentatively staying at a friend of a friends' condo that my good friend Stephanie is arranging (can I say "friend" any more). So we won't have to drive in Sunday Ski Traffic barely AT ALL!!! Yea. I'm looking forward to the next race, hoping the course is good and I race well!
Friday, January 05, 2007
Weight Loss Again!
Weight loss is going really well, I am down to 143.5, so almost 20 pounds. The difference is huge!! It has all come off using GOFD&E (Good Old Fashion Diet and Exercise). I can really feel it. I joined the Greenwood Athletic Club in late December and that's been really fun. I am loving the spin classes, and the Pilates! Exercise is the key to my well being, nutrition is the key to the weight loss. My dietician Prudence has been monumental in teaching me all I need to know! AND, she keeps me honest!
Sunday, November 05, 2006
Havasupai/Zion Trip (LONG)
Saturday we met up with the rest of my moms friends at REI and headed to the Hoover Dam to take the tour. I tell you, it's a DAM fine DAM (at least that was the going joke). We traveled down into the dam to see how it worked. Annie was great on the tour except for the 10 minute movie they made us watch, she was more into walking up and down the theatre stairs. After that it was off to Kingman for the night. Joyce scored us some SWEET rooms at the Best Western. That evening we celebrated my moms 50th birthday at the tastiest little mexican joint in Kingman, which has become a bit of tradition for the Happy Hikers (my moms hiking group).
The next morning it was up and out early (NOT!!). We got off at 9am, and were at the rim to start hiking by 11. The hike down was amazing. You start on the top of this huge cliff and traverse through these insane switchbacks. At the bottom you get into this red rock canyon and follow it's bottom for about 6 miles. The hike in took us about 4.5 hours. We stopped once for about 15 minutes to have our turkey sandwiches that my mom made for us the night before. Annie was excellent on the hike, she talked, slept, babbled, ate, pointed, and laughed. Not a single fuss or cry, she was great. Arriving into Supai villiage is always a bit of a shock, their standard of living seems lower than ours, allthough it grows on you, especially when you realize that a big part of it is that they don't like to pick up their trash. Since I was there in 1999 the only new addition I saw was an LDS church. That surprised me a little bit. The locals were much friendlier this time, they would look at you and talk to you, a big change from when I was there in 1999. We got a lot of comments on Annabelle, and the fact that we brough a baby down there. I think people thought we were either crazy, or really cool, I'll take the later. We headed to the lodge to check in. It's primative, but has everything you need, clean beds and a bathroom. I then went to the store to secure some whole milk for Annies bottles, they kindly took me to the back to get a half-gallon. I stopped by the cafe to see if they had made the birthday cake that I called and requested for mom...they did. After some cleanup and a little rest Mom, Day, Troy, Annie and I headed out for a little walk and then over to the cafe for dinner. Mom was utterly surprised by the birthday cake, complete with candles!! It was a HUGE cake, well decorated, and tasted like a homemade brownie. We shared with everyone in the entire cafe, and still had cake to spare! Troy and Annie hit the hay early and I stayed up and chatted with my parents.
Monday we all got up ealry, had breakfast and headed for the trail to the falls. They were just as amazing as I remembered. Rather than describe it, here are the photos.
The first and most heavily photographed is Havasupai Falls.
The next fall we went to was Mooney falls. To get to the bottom of this fall you have to descend these ropes and chains and there is some definite exposure involved. Troy, Dad and I were the only ones to brave it. While dad was at the bottom he got some great shots of Mooney falls. There was a rope swing there, which dad and I just had to try (Troy was too cool to join in on the sillyness). It was great to swim in the water. Very refreshing, not too cold. My mom took care of Annie at the top of Mooney falls while Troy and I braved the ropes and chanes, so no worries, she was safe too!
After Mooney falls we headed back up towards the lodge and stoped by Navajo falls on they way. They are a little hidden, but well worth the search!
After Navajo falls we were all pretty pooped and Annie needed some running around time, so we headed back to the lodge for some R&R until dinner. We had a really nice mello dinner at the cafe, no cake this time!
Tuesday was our hike out day, and everyone was a little worried. It's a LONG 8 miles and it ends with those nasty switchbacks that I talked about earlier. Troy and I woke up ready to hit it hard. I set out with a good strong pace. We hiked about 1.5 miles hard when a group of three; Roger, Steve and Roger's wife Lori caught up to us. They seemed nice so we stayed with them, and proceded to have a great hike out together. They were awesome people and loved to hike. Roger and Lori are from Idaho, and Steve was from Laughlin, NV. We had a great time hiking fast and chatting about the outdoors. We were out of the canyon in a little under 3 hours, and Annie slept pretty much the entire trip! We swapped phone numbers at the top and headed to the van to get some Gatoraid for the Happy hikers. We saw them coming up the trail about an hour later, apparently they set a great pace too!! After that we had a long drive back to Vegas to drop Deb and mom at the airport and to switch rental cars.
Wednesay Troy, Annie and I woke up ready to head to Vegas. We did some shopping at Whole Foods, found ourself a new cooler becacuse the styrafome just didn't cut it, and we were off! After an uneventful drive we arrived in Springdale, Utah, the gateway to Zion National Park. RED ROCK ABOUND! After checking into the Watchman campground I realized that I forgot fuel for our camp lantern so we headed into town via the shuttle system. We found our fuel, but even better, we found a guide company that was willing to take us for a 1 day rock climbing class the next day. Troy and I were pretty avid climbers pre Annabelle, but all of that has changed since her arrival. I was a little nervous that the guide didn't know what he was getting himself into, but I let those thoughts rest for the night. Our first night in the Watchman campground was nasty. I had trouble making dinner due to the evil wind. Troy and I ended up eating in the packed rental car (a PT cruiser) while Annie slept in the tent. The nights rest was no better. It was cold, and I mean COLD. Annie got chilly and ended up on my sleeping pad, in my sleeping bag, so I was mostly uncovered. It was cold, crowded, and slightly miserable.
Thursday morning at 6 we pealed ourself out of our bags, and packed up to go climbing. When we met the guide, Jonathan, all my worries went away. He had a 2.5 year old son, and was very concerned about Annabelle. We agreed that it was too cold to climb and that we should meet back at 1pm to do an afternoon climb instead. Good Idea!! We headed to Oscars (AWESOME) for breakfast (first Huevos Rancheros ever, and they were to die for) and discussed the option of getting a room in Springdale and ditching the camping idea due to the miserable night. We decided YES, and were able to find a Best Western right down the street that was within our budget. After a little regrouping in the hotel we headed out to do a hike and start to see Zion. We hiked the Watchman trail (about 3 miles), broke down and packed up the tent and cancled our camping reservations. After doing all that it was time to meet Jonathan for our climbing trip. He took us just outside of the borders of the national park to this great local climbing spot. Annabelle had lots of nice, flat, safe ground to paly around on. We took turns climbing 4 different routs, and we had an ABSOLUTE BLAST. Thank you Jonathan, he made our day great. It was wonderful to talk with him about getting into the outdoors with children and how your outlook changes on life and adventure. He was a very cool dude! And for once we were able to meet someone that does more outdoors with their kid that we do. He expaned our set of possibilities, I love that! That evening after the climbing, Troy put Annie to bed while I picked up some pizzas from Pizza and Noodle Co. (very good). We had a nice night in the hotel room, eating pizza and catching up on cable television!
Friday morning after I slept in, we decided to do the infamous Angels Landing hike. This hike is only 5 miles, but it has 2,500 elevation gain. It's up up up, and then some more UP. The last portion is a series of steps and chains that you climb with your hands, with extreeme exposure on both sides of you. WE ATE IT UP. Everyone thought I was a goddess for bringing Annabelle up it. In all honesty, I love heights, I love exposure, I have great balance, and Annie was GREAT!! We are so lucky to have such a go-go kiddo. The view from the top was clearly the best in the park (except for some of the views the rock climbers must have on their multi-day routes). That was about it for the day. We caught a little movie in the visitor center about Zion on the way back to town. Troy picked up some Chinese for dinner. I had a Motzarella sandwhich with some tomatoes and basil, yummmmm. Annie went down easy after all the adventure she had!
Saturday we decided that we wanted to hike "The Narrows". This is a famous area of Zion where the Virgin river runs down this slot canyon. People like to hike up the slot canyon, but in places it's wall to wall water. So we rented these really cool boots, dry pants, and walking sticks from the guide company and off we went. These items were invaluable, and I woulnd't do the narrown without them...period. We did a 7 mile round trip hike in The Narrows and it was spectacular. There were places where I was up to my thigh in water with my giggeling baby on my back. I felt like the stud woman that I was. Troy enjoyed the peacefulness as well. At times we had 2,000 feet of rock towering about our head and the river was only 50 feet across. It was amazing, and fun, and mysterious, sometimes errie, other times euphoric. I would recommend this hike to anyone, but only when the water is low. I would consider October to be the OPTIMAL time to visit Zion! That evening we treated ourselves to Hamburgers at Oscars. They were amazing and the perfect post-hike treat!
Sunday (my birthday) came too quickly and it was time for us to trek back to Vegas and fly home. We arrived in Vegas way to early, due to the time change, so we headed over to Red Rocks State Park and did a hike in the climbing capital of Nevada. We sat and watched some climbers and salivated all over the rocks. Oooh, I want to climb again!! After that we returned the car, caught our flight and we were home by 9. Troy and I had a blast playing Mario Cart against each other on the bus ride home from the airport while Annie slept in her car seat. It was a great birthday, and an even greater trip!
Friday, October 20, 2006
Wednesday, October 18, 2006
The Miniature Earth
Oh Me Oh My I have a Skinny Thigh!
So this past Monday we had our two week checkup. I was able to implement the new diet, and I wasn't hungry at all. It was definitely enough food when I stuck to the whole grains and variety. It was nice to see her after two weeks rather than one week b/c we really had a chance to live our changes. I lost 5.5 pounds. Holy toledo. I was hoping for 1 pound. I attribute this to me sticking to the calories, and the breakouts, and exercising once to twice a day (always fun exercise, and always with Annabelle in tow). So now that Annie has fullly weaned, we have lowered my calories a bit more to really focus on weight loss, and I am jazzed to keep up the momentum. No more 164!!! I'm now 157.75...but that was on Monday...and it's Wednesday...so I'm probably even lighter!!! I'm giving myself a huge pat on the back!!
Friday, October 13, 2006
Wowzer! On September 30, 2006 miss Annabelle Grace Wieck took her first 5 steps...and then turned around and took 5 more...then 5 more...then 5 more...about 10 times!! She was 10.5 months old to the day. We were attending a wedding that day and inbetween the wedding and the reception we were at our friends Chris and Taylor's house. That's where she walked. Her fist steps were taken in a new pair of Pedipeds that we bought her (nice and stable). Yippy Annabelle!!
What to Eat
An Inconvenient Truth
The new book by Al Gore. I read this while up at the cabin and I was totally floored. This is one of the most beautiful, poignant, and important books that I have read. It has spurred me to action. We as a world need to make some changes in the way that we lead our daily lives if we have even the slightest hope of handing a sustainable world to our children. Global Warming is a reality, we are in the midst of it. The most compelling part of the book to me was the photos that he had of what certain cities would look like if our oceans raised by 20 feet. It's devastating, 120 million people would be displaced. There is a movie that Al created to go with his book which I would love to see (if I could ever get away to see a movie). Next time you are at the bookstore, pick up this book and at the very least leaf through it, if you are compelled...buy it. It's worth it.
September at the Cabin
Boy am I behind!
Monday, August 07, 2006
Also, the word from our cabin neighbors is that who ever was at the cabin last left a light on and the front curtains open, so Troy and I were really hoping to get up there and take care of things. I can't imagine what the electric bill is going to be this month!
Also a bummer, I found out several days ago that a wedding we were supposed to attend this coming Saturday has been postponed. Apparently the grooms brother died in an auto accident over the weekend and they are needing to get through that tragedy first, before they feel they can go on with the wedding. We were planning on visiting Troys parents after the wedding, so now it looks like we will be taking a trip to Loveland just to see them, instead of multi-tasking.
I am finally starting to get over my sickness, 4 days later. I'm glad Annabelle and Troy stayed healthy, I must have not been contagious. I think it was just that fact that I was getting worn down from many sleepless nights, lots of hiking, moving, selling the house. It finally hit me, and I just needed to rest for awhile.
Sunday, July 30, 2006
Utah Opera Festival
- Man of La Mancha (with Troy)
- La Boheme (with Troy)
- The Music Man (with Mom)
On Friday before the operas started we went to the University in Logan and had home-made ice cream (Aggie ice cream). It was very decadent.
On Saturday we went to the Logan farmers market. Last year mom, grandma and I just happened upon the market and it was one of the BEST farmers markets I've ever been to. This year was wonderful as well. The whole town knows each other, and the market is a friendly place where you get a taste of the community. There are lots of moms there selling homemade crafts for affordable prices and it's nice to be able to support their cause. I bought more raspberries than Troy thought I could eat (which I finished easily).
Sunday my mom woke up with Annabelle and took her on a walk and to breakfast while Troy and I slept in until 10:30. It was the best treat EVER. I felt truly rested for the first time in a year (and now I am up late writing this blog...great). My mom is sooooo good with Annie and she just loves hanging out with her grandma. I am so thankful for such a wonderful mother, I know she was just as good with me as she is with Annie, and for that I am really lucky!
We had a hectic day of travel back home. We had to drive an hour to the airport in Salt Lake, return the rental car, our flight was delayed, so we missed our bus in Denver, got on the next bus which took an hour to get home, then we turned around and went and picked up our puppy from some friends house about 30 minutes away. Long day, and I should hit the hay!
Here are a few pics my grandpa took of Annie at the farmers market.
Wednesday, July 26, 2006
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Battery, Battery, Where is the Battery
Annabelle update: She is officially crawling, and boy can she move. This is not because she is smarter than any other babies (inside joke), it's just the right time for her. She is a huge fan of electrical cords and will bee-line straight for them. She has taken to chasing the dog and cat around the house, much to their distaste. She is also pulling up on everything. Her favorite things to pull up on are:
- Me - using my hair - ouch!
- The coffee table - where she will fall and bump her head on the way down
- The windowsill
- Troys legs - including leg hair
- The pillows on the bed
Monday, July 17, 2006
We absolutely love our new apartment. I am still getting used to living on the 3rd floor with a baby. Groceries are a little tough. It's SO much easier to keep clean, and I love our vaulted ceilings. It's just the perfect amount of space for our family right now.
I have a few things I want to post about within the next few days so I will try to get those posts up and going.
1) Our new Chariot
2) Some pics of the Apartment
3) Some recent pics of Annie
Sunday, June 11, 2006
Thursday, June 08, 2006
We got an offer today from a couple that looked at it on Tuesday. We just signed the paperwork for a counter-offer. It's not pretty, but we may just get out of our house trap! It will take major bleeding of our assets and a generous line of credit from our Wieck parents, but my job as a stay at home mama will not be compromised. Thank the world!
We switched realtors at the end of May, and it turns out that the first people to see the house under the new realtor are the ones that put in the offer. I feel bad for the old realtor (bad luck) but we are so totally happy to FINALLY have an offer. Funny, if the offer is successful and turns into a contract on the house, then our closing date will be the same day as we closed when we BOUGHT the house 3 years ago. Crazy!
We have the apartment that we will move into narrowed down to two different complexes. We will go take a look at both of them Saturday.
If everything goes well we will be moving into our new place somewhere between June 27th and July1!
Wednesday, June 07, 2006
Fairy Slipper- Orchidbulbosa
The jewel-like fairy slipper is one of a dozen species of native orchids that can be found around the Elk Mountains [not where we were]. These are the first of the local orchid species to bloom, beginning in late May, and are found in the diffuse light of coniferous forests, usually on north-facing aspects. This is the most colorful of the local orchids with bright pink petals crowning the yellow, maroon and white “slipper.” Each flower is solitary, on a short stem emerging from a single broad basal leaf. Like many orchids, the fairy slipper has a bulbous, or testicle-shaped root, inspiring its species name, bulbosa.
Another common name, calypso orchid, may be interpreted as a reference to the lid or hood (from the Greek word kalyptra, meaning covering or veil) that protects the reproductive organs of the flower. Calypso is also the name of the sea nymph in Homer’s epic poem, the Odyssey, who detained the willing Odysseus on his return from Troy. Like the sea nymph, these orchids are captivatingly beautiful and prefer secluded haunts. They are sometimes also called Venus orchid, after the Greek goddess of love and beauty. Although calypso orchids are usually not very abundant where they grow, they can be found in northern temperate forests around the world.
Monday I was sleeping in until Troy called for me to get up quickly. We had a moose on our porch! That was the closest I have ever seen them get to the cabin.
She saw us inside and got a little uneasy. Eventually she sauntered around the edge of the pond and then disappeared over the banks of the river.
After breakfast we packed up and went for a hike up to Lost Lake and Laramie Lake. Laramie Lake was awesome, we were the only ones there, so we thought.
When we got to Laramie Lake, Annabelle had a huge meltdown because she had skipped her morning nap and in the process of chewing on our camelback tube had soaked her sleeper outfit. We had to strip her down to a diaper and rock her to sleep on the banks of the lake. While I was holding her and sitting on a log we had the pleasure of watching a beaver come out of his den and swim around in the lake. He slapped his tail at us (or possibly Arwen) and dove down twice. Then after about 20 minutes of swimming, he went back into his home. I have never seen a beaver in person so it was a really cool sight, and a nice reward for having to slow down and let Annie take her nap in an interesting location.
That evening we enjoyed a nice dinner, some peach cobbler, watched a sad movie, and hit the hay. Tuesday Troy let me sleep in! He got up with Annie at 7am and let me sleep until 10. While I was sleeping Troy and Annie went on a walk and took a picture of this orchid that they found growing along our entrance road. I have never seen an orchid in the wild. I didn't even know that they grew wild in Colorado. Pretty rare find!!
I woke up feeling more rested than I have in a long time. We packed up, I went over and got the bran muffin recipe from the neighbors and visited a little with Annie, and we headed home. The drive was uneventful, Annabelle slept the entire way and Troy got in a good nap himself!