Some more randomness in photos and drivel

This outfit is a big reason I started selling LuLaRoe: it makes me feel cute. Plus pockets. I’m so jazzed!! I’m taking my son to see Flogging Molly tomorrow! It’s his first concert and I think I’m way more excited than he is. It snowed here in SC. Weird. 

Word. All the words. 

I’m in big girl school! 

This owl picture…probably every kid born in the ’70’s has this picture. My friend Kebrina gave me this picture; I really wanted it because I remember it from my grandma’s house. ❤

This is from that time I wore a skirt as a top and played the cello for trick or treaters. …it was clearly a very dark time. 😉 

Halloween was fun last year.

Baseball season ❤⚾️

My husband’s promotion ceremony. I’m so in love with this man. 

So…there’s some stuff that I should have been blogging about but totally didn’t. 

I think next I’ll blog about my new workout. It sucks. You’ll love it. 😎

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New adventures because electrons.

So…its been a hot minute and lots has happened. We moved, I started a business, I went back to school (again), The Sir is back in school (again), and I have another blog. Also, I haven’t been taking photos of my cooking or keeping track of my workouts or any of the usual stuff that I used to drone on about here. When I read blogs and the author says, “I’m really sorry for not posting more often…” I always roll my eyes. Who cares? Its a blog. So, dear reader, you get no apology. You do, however, get a lame-ass explanation, if you’re interested.

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I graduated from Fayetteville Tech with an Associate in Science (this took me longer than the creators of “Community” ever dreamed. Sissies.) I’m now a chemistry major at the University of South Carolina. (Apparently, they are also good at basketball?) I’m finally at a big girl school and I have to tell you: I geek out on a regular basis. Like every. single. day. My school campus is beautiful and there are so many students and most of them are 12 and wear pajamas to class and use “f*ck” like a comma, but there’s also an observatory and laboratories and mass spectrometers and Starbucks. The library is 7 or 8 levels of air that smells like books and coffee and the tears of undergraduates. I transferred in with a ridiculous amount of credits, but only 109 count toward my degree. I’m listed as a senior(citizen) but I’m not scheduled to graduate until Spring 2019.

And I started a couple of little pages on Tumblr. Tumblr is weird and I’m still figuring it out but I do enjoy the memes, the swears, and the obligatory teen angst.

I started a bullet journal. I started a new workout. My husband got injured at work but he’s better now. We bought land. I am a LuLaRoe retailer. I listen to too many podcasts (Behind the Wires. Welcome to Nightvale. StarTalk. Nerdist. This American Life. The Curious Cases of Rutherford and Fry. Anxiously awaiting the new season of Serial. ).

Anyway, I’ll post some more soon, but in the mean time, here’s some new links where you can follow me (stalk much?) around the web. If nothing else, it should provide for some comic relief while I stumble around the world figuring myself out. …because at 41(!) I should, you know, like…start to figure stuff out.

Chemistry Mom  on Tumblr

The blog I started for my undergraduate research. (Don’t get excited; the research hasn’t started yet.)

The FaceBook page for my LuLaRoe VIP group. All the cool kids are there, yo.

Where I tweet, apparently. Because that’s what people do on twitter. They tweet. I am a tweeter.

Thanks for hanging around, dear reader. I hope to make it worth your while. 🙂

On glycolysis and drinking soap

My A&P professor is brilliant. Like…can teach anyone anything brilliant. And in class we’re talking about glycolysis and the nervous system and how wonderful the human body is. I was inspired by…perhaps an unhealthy dose…of scientific curiousity. I do not blame my instructor for what follows:

I got home from school and went for a run.

Since I hadn’t eaten for several hours, I was pretty sure I didn’t have much free-roaming glucose in my blood stream, so, I reasoned, glycolysis (freeing up stored glycogen from my liver) should follow pretty quickly after I start exercising.

No lunch. Just coffee to drink. It’s hot. It’s humid. I ran.

When a person is dehydrated and hungry on a good day, bad things can happen. When a person runs in the heat bad things can happen. Enter: My Scientific Mind.

I shall, I thought, make note of how amazing my liver is and happily report my findings to anyone unfortunate enough listen. …that’s not what happened.

What happened, gentle reader, is that when I got home from my hour long run, my brain was beset by too many photons of light and not enough energy. My eyes took forever to readjust to the relative darkness of my house and I was dizzy from dehydration. I stumbled upstairs to my bathroom, stripping as I went, to find-eureka!-a bottle of water waiting for me by my sink.

No. It was not water. It was white tea scented soap and it tasted like …soap.

After inventing new curse words in Klingon, and stumbling to the shower, I rinsed my mouth. I became a human bubble machine. I could’ve worked for Lawrence Welk. I looked like Cujo French kissing a car wash brush. I smelled good though, so…there’s that.

Justice, I suppose, for the swear words…

Anyway, folks, please eat and hydrate before you run. Glycolysis is great, and all, but it tastes a lot like soap.

 

Traveling Pennies

First, an announcement: the Idiot Quilts are almost done! The first was mailed a couple of days ago, the next will be mailed on Monday, then again on Friday. 🙂 The quilt for Coach’s online fund raiser is 50% complete. Yay! for being productive. (We won’t talk about the tardiness…)

Ever since our trip to Europe last summer and our trip to Disney World the previous October, the kids have been begging for trips. We explained to them that trips cost lots (lots!) of money and we’d need to save lots (lots!) of money.

We’ve cut out iTunes movies and music, trips to the coffee store, dining out, ordering pizza, trips to the money pit Target, and school lunches. We stay home more often, saving gas money. I haven’t had my hair done in…um…yeah…I can’t remember.

My best friend’s family bought me a race entry for my birthday and I was surprised with a half marathon entry by my Hubs, but there will be no more races for the year. This is huge. In a given year, I will enter several races, each costing between $30-$110 each. This doesn’t include travel, hotel, food, and buying stuff at the expos. When I really added up all the races expenses for the past couple of years, I choked. While I know the kids had fun on my race weekends, I know that these were very selfish expenses on my part.

For several weeks now, my youngest has been bringing me stray change “for our next big trip to see Harry Potter”. My heart melts. Tiny little fist full of pennies…to travel the world. The oldest wants to see Paris (she’s enrolled in French language class), and has never complained about the lack of pizza. The middle kiddo wants to go back to London to ride in The Eye again and he’s never whined about missing a movie. It’s pretty cool that they see the world as accessible and they’re willing to give up their little luxuries.

We have bank accounts, of course, but the Chang€ o£ $cener¥ jar is something in the house, something they can focus on, and actively fill. (Online banking is great, but clicking around on a computer is never as satisfying as hearing the chink! of real money.)

How do you encourage your kids to save? What method works best for your family travel goals?

Cheers!

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A Year’s Review in Photos

I don’t really dig those “Christmas Letters” that some people send with their Christmas cards. Heck, this year?… I didn’t even get around to sending cards. (I promise, Dear Friends, someday I’ll make it up to you.) Since its 0500 and I’ve not been to bed yet and New Year’s is only a few days away, I figured I should post something on my blog to “recap” 2013. …’cos…you know…I should.

Our family went snow skiing in the mountains of North Carolina. I'd never been skiing before; I didn't die, so I consider it a success.
Our family went snow skiing in the mountains of North Carolina. I’d never been skiing before; I didn’t die, so I consider it a success.
First ever trail race, a Half-Marathon with my hubby.
First ever trail race, a Half-Marathon with my hubby.
…okay. a LOT of spring rain.
…okay. a LOT of spring rain.
After an 8 hour flight in a C5-Galaxy, the kids were zonked when we finally arrived in Germany.
After an 8 hour flight in a C5-Galaxy, the kids were zonked when we finally arrived in Germany.
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Venice!
a dear Italian lady and her kitchen fire
a dear Italian lady and her kitchen fire
new Italian friends! I didn't understand 90% of what they said, but I love them.
new Italian friends! I didn’t understand 90% of what they said, but I love them.
My son…taking pictures…at the Vatican museum. Joy!!
My son…taking pictures…at the Vatican museum. Joy!!
a really terrible photo of the Pieta inside St. Peter's Basilica. The photo is bad because I was too busy crying to see clearly. THE PIETA. IN REAL LIFE. IN ROME. I said prayers at the tomb of John Paul II, I attended mass, I wept with joy. St. Peter's Basilica…
a really terrible photo of the Pieta inside St. Peter’s Basilica. The photo is bad because I was too busy crying to see clearly. THE PIETA. IN REAL LIFE. IN ROME. I said prayers at the tomb of John Paul II, I attended mass, I wept with joy. St. Peter’s Basilica…
When I remember Bristol, I remember this: cool breezes, soft beds, calm moments after Italy's heated chaos. My daughter was so happy by the water lilies at our hostel.
When I remember Bristol, I remember this: cool breezes, soft beds, calm moments after Italy’s heated chaos. My daughter was so happy by the water lilies at our hostel.
outside a pub in Bristol…nice weirdos are the best kind. :)
outside a pub in Bristol…nice weirdos are the best kind. 🙂
Our family had so much fun finding all the Grommits in Bristol!
Our family had so much fun finding all the Grommits in Bristol!

The Doctor Who Experience in Cardiff was a treat. Seeing the inside of the TARDIS, getting up close to River Song’s relics, hearing the kids debate which of the Doctors was the best… positively priceless memories!
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King's Cross Station, London!
King’s Cross Station, London!
…because kilts, that's why.
…because kilts, that’s why.

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London… loved it!

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the view from The Eye.

Visiting the Harry Potter studios in Leavesden was positively magical. I took about a million photos, but these are a couple of my favorites:

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(A Color Run!)

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I’ve run more miles and travelled more places than I ever have before. I hired a coach and gained a friend. My kids are taller, healthier, happier than they were last year. I love my husband more today than yesterday and we are stronger than ever, looking forward to adventures unknown.

It was a year of carrying around stuff I should never have picked up, then blissfully setting it all back down again. It was a year of being cut to the core by family, of hurting family, of knee-buckling pain. It was a year of learning the power of forgiveness and consequence. Some lessons were really, really hard-learned; I’m sad they needed teaching in the first place, but they will never be forgotten.

2013 was a pretty decent year and I’m glad to have been blessed to live it. If time travel were possible, I don’t think I’d want 2013 back…maybe just stretch out the hugs a little more. I am, without a doubt, eager to put 2013 behind me and embrace the snot out of 2014.

Here’s to an amazing 2014. “…may the earth rise to meet our feet…”

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Swam Swum

This week, I have swum 3350 meters.

That means I swam a smidge over 2 miles.

I am, as my coach says, Swamished.

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…which is why I may eat this entire chicken before bed tonight.

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…the poor thing. The poor, delicious, salty, herb-scented thing…

I did swim, I have swum, I swam.

There’s your free grammar lesson. Go forth, wise reader, and enjoy your grammatically correct weekend. 🙂

The Necessity for Mess

The Color Run, Spartan Race, Mud Runs, Tough Mudders, Muddy Buddies…

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These aren’t cheap races, but Americans are shelling out major money to participate.

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Why?

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Because we have to be clean and proper and polite and correct and germ-free all the time. Every day.

Every.damned.day.

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We sit in traffic, we sit behind desks, we sit in movies, we sit on couches. Messy races offer a chance to get dirty. Gritty. Bloody. Primal.

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My favorite race has been my hardest race: the Bataan Memorial Death March marathon. 26.2 miles through desert mountains with a ruck on my back. Blood dripping from my face, sun burning my neck, blister juice squishing through my shoes… Pain. I paid for pain.

I called my best friend crying.

It was glorious.

We need mess and discomfort to remind us that we are human and we may have a soft, squishy outside, but we have a stony, salty center. In a world of hand sanitizer, “you can’t do that!”s, and time-outs, blood and guts are more refreshing than a pumpkin spiced latte and more satisfying than a paleo-pan cake.

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Marathons, triathlons, ultras, adventure races…

Campfire hair, skinned knees, broken fingernails, torn jeans, sweat rings…

Mess is a necessary release valve, even if we have to pay for it.