Sunday, November 29, 2009

The LaPan's Holidays "al la De-Scrooge"

Last year we were convinced (aka guilted) into not going through with our tradition of going to Mexico for my birthday and Christmas. We did have a good time visiting with family and being with friends late into the evenign Christmas night. However, when we made the decision to celebrate our Christmas Holiday in Mexico, it was to build our own traditions. To avoid feeling guilty for leaving one parents or grandparents house too early, or not spending enough time with one family or another. It was our way of saying, this is what WE want to do.

So, last year we stayed in Phoenix until the 26th. On Christmas Eve, also my birthday, we went to dinner with my family, then drove to Shane's family after their celebration to at least say hello. We ended up home around Midnight. On Christmas morning we woke up just in time to shower and get in the car to go visit Shane's (other) parents for Christmas breakfast - Almost 3 hours later and a photo radar ticket, we stopped by our house to let the dogs out & headed another half an hour to be with my family for Christmas dinner. After dinner, another 45mins driving we stopped by our good friends the Angelone's for a nightcap. With all the stress of driving - and Shane taking one for the team and celebrating with my dad (because it was my turn for DD).....then Big J later that evening he was well on his way to a not so good start to the drive to Mexico in the morning....

Long story short we drove about 200 miles between Christmas Eve and Christmas Day, then finally got down to Mexico late on the 26th. We never set up a Christmas Tree or put out any decorations. We barely did any shopping or gift exchanging, just for our friends and family's chidren....

This year we wanted to change our bad attitudes. Even though our Thanksgiving plans were changed last minute, we did get the opportunity to get down to our Mexico house and enjoy some great beach time. We also realized that our co-house owner would not be down before us so we decided to set up our Christmas tree & change our holiday bah humbug attitudes for this year.

So, here you have it. Our fabulous (almost-free) Mexico style Christmas tree - up and waiting for us to get back here for the Holiday.

We started out with one of my last speeed runs a-la "Baxter bring it" style, shrimp & veggie scramble + Mimosas and tree decorating.

Couldn't ask for anything more. This year, we will be doing Christmas the LaPan traditional style. Shrimp, beach, and maybe a shot of hornitos.

Monday, November 16, 2009

This and that rambles.

The other night we somehow ended up watching Late night with Jay Leno - or whatever his show is called. Now that it starts at 9, it's not really THAT late. They had on some contestants from The Biggest Loser so we watched until we got to see them. But, first up was Howie Mandel. The only thing I know about that guy is he was the host of that silly show "Who wants to be a Millionaire?" Wait that's not right - it's the other one, the one with the brief cases... whatever that one was called - same difference, no?

Anyhow, my point was watching him made me nervous. He's ADD on a whole other level, planet actually. I was seriously stressed out just watching him. He couldn't finish a thought or make a point to SAVE.HIS.LIFE.

And then I realized, on a (hopefully) much lower level I am the SAME way. Especially lately. If I don't have 999things going on, or a million different things to do, plan, figure out well then, I'm bored.

Even when I'm busy working, driving, running, swimming or biking I'm constantly thinking of other things. Calculating routes and paces and thinking about races and elevation, and OMG make it STOP!

Ask me a question about a running route and I will give you splits, and mile markers. Potty stops and incline/decline. I can figure out what time I'll be at a certain intersection if you want to meet me in just a few seconds. It's rather disturbing I suppose. In fact. After talking with a couple of friends about how there was a POSSIBILITY they might join in my next 21miler this weekend, sure enough in less than a day they had an email in their inbox with the details of when/where and how far, along with a detailed map of course.

I wonder if it will work, and I will actually get their company?!?!?

Of course even if there was no chance of them actually showing up I would still have that email all written out in my head anyways.

So, aside from the plotting I'm also trying to start visualize this whole marathon thing. I don't know how some people find it so easy to say they think they can run XX. I just can't do it. I've run hills, I've run a gazillion 800s. I've even done the half marathon on the same route. Last Saturday we did a downhill run. It was only about 5miles down, but it was pretty steep. It sure was a confidence booster looking at the pace & the effort it felt like, but like I said, it was ONLY 5miles.

When it comes down to 3 weeks and a few days from now, I'm just going to give it what I've got and hope for the best. After this Saturday I will have done all that I could do to lead up to the race, and I've made a vow to myself to be just as strong mentally. Many say the mind is really what can get you there, can push past the pain. I'm certainly hoping so! It is most definitely MY GOAL to be mentally strong for this race. Whatever comes after that, it was meant to be.

ON another note, IRONMAN! Ironman AZ is just a few days away, and I'm lucky enough to get to host an incredibly talented athlete, Emily - A.K.A. "Speedy pants." I was introduced to her this year via the Supa. Seriously these girls are some of the toughest, bad ass, FAST chicks I have ever met. Oh, they just happened to be Hot as well. Utah breeds well, I can say that for sure.

I just had to repost this picture cause it sums up these tough girls. I HARD ass swim at 6000+ft elevation that nearly killed Shane & I, followed up by a beer. In Utah. I so know why I love these girls so much.

So, this weekend we will be taking on the sherpa role once again. I have to admit I've really grown to enjoy it. Last year, Momo's Ironman was my first real big Sherpa experience and I had SO much fun! You are out there all day long, cheering, picture taking, encouraging, and then the best part is you also get to enjoy in the celebrating! And, in the end, isn't that the most important part anyway? It is Emily's first Ironman, and I'm so excited to be part of it. I had some of the best support from friends for my first Ironman, and I'm just happy I can do the same for someone else!

Now, my only fear is the Ironman spectacle gets me all fired up and I try to do something stupid like SIGN up when I need to REALLY think about it first. What race (Canada) and the perfect timing for my next one. Not just do it cause I'm high on everyone else's adrenaline.

The house is ready, the yummy drinks are waiting & of course Baxter is so flipping excited for the girls he can hardly stand it.

All that's left is a little sherpa fashion plotting and creativity from The Team Emily.....

Monday, November 9, 2009

Happy Birthday Baxter

Today is my baby boy's 8th birthday. Makes me sad. I hate that he's getting older. As nice as it is that he's not crazy 24hours a day, I miss it. He's still got so many years left in him, but really I wish he could stay 3 forever! Minus the hole in the wall he tried to eat through.

Here we are on the first day I got to bring him home, the day after Christmas, 2001. We were both babies then, and pretty much grew up together.

He's been THE BEST running partner anyone could ever ask for. We had our moments where I was barely running 10min miles and he wanted to go 7min miles. But, I think we've finally found our middle ground, and the gentle leader.

Still, he would be and always has been most happy OFF LEASH.

Shane tried to blame the fact that Baxter is somewhat of a lush on ME. But, here I have proof. Baxter's first taste of wine. Yes, that would be Shane's hand. I'm pretty sure he was trying to get the puppy to calm the F&%^ down. Little did he know what it would really do to him.

He always has been quite the ham.....

Still the most snugly, big lap dog EVER.

Even with his puppy....

Besides running, his favorite time is spent on the beach.

and drinking margaritas.....

After every race we do, Baxter gets to wear the medals. He sits and poses for his 'post race picture.' Could he be ANY cuter?

Happy Birthday Bub, here's to MANY, MANY more.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009

Bub's Beach

The first time we visited Rocky Point at the end of October/Beg of November was after my first half Ironman (Soma). I remembered being surprised how gorgeous the weather was. Nice enough to still sit on the beach, yet cool mornings and nights. This past weekend was much of the same.

The first couple days were cooler, but not COOL by any means. I was able to get in my 90min "long run" which actually was harder than I thought (couldn't have had ANYTHING to do with my hydration methods or anything). But, I survived.

Baxter could not have been more happy. For the most part, the beach was quiet, just a few families here and there, but Bub's beach was almost all his.

We were also blessed with very calm waters. Not yet cooled down, I actually got in and splashed around a bit. We took the kayak out a couple times, which reminded me how much I need to get back to my Daniel torture to strengthen myself up. I'm WEAK. My forearms are still a little sore.
On our last day the water was so calm, we couldn't resist going out one more time. I'm so thankful we did. We saw the dolphins for the first time all week. Not only did we SEE them, they appeared right next to us, some even swimming underneath our kayak. SO flipping cool. About 20 in the first pod, and another 15 or so shortly after. Why are they so much fun to watch!?

We decided to venture out a bit on Halloween. I couldn't help but take this picture. There were two ladies dressed up as "old ladies that lost their puppies." So creative, funny & yet also so wrong on so many levels. It was fun to see everyone dress up & getting into the spirit. We just have to do it next year....

Other than beach time & runs on the sand, we pretty much relaxed, read & ate shrimp. October is the beginning of the prime shrimping season & let me tell you they were fantastic. I think we perfected our shrimp grilling skills.... Here's a little teaser. They were even better than they look.

All in all a fantastic get away, so much we might try to sneak one more trip back in before it gets too cool.
I love our home away from home. Sometimes I think I was meant to live at the beach.