Monday, June 30, 2008

Viva Espagne

In the space of about three weeks I've managed to be in two cities the night they win a big old sports championship.

I'm not sure anyone in Spain went to sleep last night.

Thursday, June 26, 2008


Dear Babies Kane and Clifford-

Well, you two are late and now I have to go on a business trip. I will still love the both of you very much but this is kind of a bummer way for us to begin our various relationships. However, at your respective graduations I WILL be able to say, "your parents woke me from a deep jet lagged sleep in Spain (i.e. dragged me out of a crowded Barceloa bar) to tell me you were here." And I suppose the more people who remember exactly where they were when you were born makes you even more amazing then I already know you kidlets are going to be.

Come safely please, I'm even more excited to know you then I am to see La Sagrada Familia.

-auntie k8

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Oops I did it again!

The Wasatch Back was a screaming success for the second year in a row. Nephew stubbornly did not come but every last Clifford kid was in town including a suprise visit from the East Coast brother. None of us really trained but everyone felt pretty good and we managed to finish the beast in a decent time.

I love this race. Can't wait for next year.

And thank you to Coldplay for writing this song that reached out through a dark night at the bottom of an icky hill to say, "lovers, keep on the road you're on, runners, until the race is won."

Da da da

So while I am trying to find five seconds to put my Wasatch Back photos up before I leave for Spain in Friday (that's right, Barcelona for a week for work-you have permission to immediately tune out ANY of my whining from now on if you would like), I give you the best thing I have seen/heard in awhile. I stole it from Dainon but I think he'll forgive me if it means gaining a new fan or two for Bon Iver. This starts kind of slow but it's worth watching the whole thing. You all know that I love music SO MUCH but even so, for something to make me cry-well it's major. Yes please to cute boys harmonizing in France.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Heart Races

I am not a runner. I'm not physically built for it, I am very slow, I am pretty good at justifying why I am too tired/sick/lazy to do it, even my best runs usually start with me wondering why on earth I put myself through it, but I've been doing it pretty regularly for about eight years now and I can't seem to leave it alone. Even as I am loving my bike more and more, I keep telling my running shoes not to worry about being abandoned.

I had a lot of time to think about why I run while I was trying to keep one foot in front of the other through my twelve miles of Wasatch Back legs this weekend. My first leg came at about 5:30 in the afternoon and although it was fairly flat, my Boston lungs and untrained legs weren't exactly pleased to be out. I really tried to do some "cramming" the two weeks before the event but frankly, I really just wanted to be home and with my family and friends this weekend and the race was the vehicle to get me there. My heart was not in training, which is too bad because I think I would have been a happier and less stressed out girl the last few months if I had been working out regularly. But alas, you all know how that hindsight stuff is.

So it's 5:45 on Friday afternoon and the sun is blazing and my body is freaking out a little bit and I start wondering what would happen if I got in the car and just said, "hey guys, I don't think I can do this." And suddenly it clicked why I keep running. I'm not good at it. It's hard for me. And I don't always love it, even when I'm telling everyone around me that I do. So I feel an extraordinary sense of accomplishment whenever I make it through a long run, when I really do manage to feel that runner's high, when I successfully stick with my training for a race, when it's 1:30 in the morning and I tear myself out of a warm bed to put on a headlamp and do it for the team.

It's so cliche and I feel like no one needs to hear another story about how someone's marathon "changed their life". But six years ago when I was a sad, chubby, moody little person wondering why on earth I had moved to California, signing up to do Team in Training changed everything. Every time I choose to go to bed early on a Friday night so I could get up and meet my team felt like I was chipping away at a stronger version of myself that I was only sort of convinced existed. Sticking with it for five months and even struggling through a stress fracture and the physical therapy I had to do to be ready to run felt like a big "eff you" to all the fears and doubts about my ability to survive my first big grownup move.

I run because it's one very clear way I have to show myself that I can do hard things. I was absolutely not ready for the Wasatch Back. Poorly trained, mentally frazzled, even a little bit cranky-very much the way I showed up here in Boston.
But I did it. And after that initial "what am I doing here again??" feeling I got into the rhythm of the race and it felt really good. I ended up running easier and faster then I did last year. I enjoyed the scenery a little more and I even passed a few people (including two GUYS on an uphill climb!!). It's sort of stunning what your body can do when your brain says it must.

Right now I am feeling like a giant failure in pretty much every aspect of my life. About once a week I shake my head and wonder how I let this being back in Boston thing happen. I had sort of a meltdown with my mom and sisters today as time to get on the plane back got closer. As my sister pointed out-four months in a place feels like long enough that you should be settled but it's not long enough for that to actually be true. I feel like a big fat loser at work and since that was my major reason for coming it's definitely coloring the rest of my experience. So I will get some sleep tomorrow night (ah the red eye, such a brilliant plan when you buy the ticket, such a terrible terrible reality.) and then I will look for a race to run this fall-something long and someplace fun, and we'll see where I end up.

Monday, June 23, 2008

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Be Prepared

Once my friend Whitney did a really long training run for a marathon and didn't take any water. When she and I write a book about how even total losers can run races she will write the no hydration chapter and I will write the one about how it's a really good idea to stay up all night three days before the event and hope you can get three or four good hours in on the plane.

It seemed like a good plane eight hours ago when I wanted to go to dinner and Berry Line more then I wanted to pack (see below).

Also, I type way way faster when I'm silly tired.

If I had a million dollars

If I was obscenely rich I would never pack. I would have certain items shipped ahead of me and then I would just buy all new things in the new place. Because I am the worst packer on the face of this planet. I leave it to the last minute (no sleep for me tonight although the night owl in me is eating this up), I forget important stuff (I didn't bring SPORTS BRAS to the ROAD RACE last year), I get frustrated halfway through and start throwing random crap in there. So I would just not do it anymore. I would also have someone else deal with the grocery store because I am not good at that place either for many of the same reasons.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

Peek a Boo

Wasatch Back here I come.

p.s. Lori Elizabeth you were so right..everyone really DOES need a headlamp.

Monday, June 16, 2008

Coming Soon

We still have stuff to do and my boss called me pretty much every 25 minutes from Ground Zero today with another detail that needed shoring up BUT, our store baby is almost ready. And of course I'm leaving for Utah in 48 hours for the Wasatch Back at pretty much the worst possible time but it will all still be here when I get back.

Pretty cool eh?

Sunday, June 15, 2008

Farm Boy

When I was eighteen a boy who I'd been spending a bit of time with was at our house for dinner. I was wearing my hair differently then normally and he said to me, "I like your hair better curly like this then when you do it straight. You should do it like this all the time." My dad looked at the kid and then said to me, "I think you should wear your hair however you would like."

Clearly, my dad is awesome. Here's a song he used to sing and play on the guitar when we were tinies that I just can't hear without thinking of him.

Thank God I'm a Country Boy

Happy Father's Day pop.

Saturday, June 14, 2008


The U2 song "Desire" came on the radio as I was driving home tonight. I haven't heard that song in about a hundred years but it's history with me got me thinking about how sometimes a seemingly insignificant event can have long, long range effects.

When I was a freshman in college I worked on my friend Derick's campaign for Student Body President. The only class I ever failed in my collegiate career was a Geology class I had that spring semester because it just completely interfered with my campaigning/flirting to get votes duties. We spent hours and hours for the months before the election standing outside the student center handing out buttons and talking to people. Our major opponents belonged to a party called "Desire" and they would play that blasted song over and over and over and over every. single. day. Even before the election I was pretty sure that if I were ever sent to hell, that looped song would be the soundtrack. When my friend lost and that guy won it was sealed, I hated the song with the kind of white hot hatred only an 18 year old girl with a half-crush on the candidate can have. I was pretty sure I was also finished with Student Politics but managed to swallow my aversion when it came to applying for a position on the Activities Board the next week. Long story short, I got a job as the Publicity Director (which I hadn't even realized until this very night was a stroke of foreshadowing!), had a crazy fun year and ended up really liking the kid who won. Five years later when I was looking for my first real job, he helped me land an interview with the Olympics and that job introduced me to the woman who connected me to RYKA which obviously led to me to the position I am in now.

I kind of needed a reminder that sometimes it takes a long time for a seed to bear fruit and that had I given in to my fears about SUU and gone home like I really really wanted to, I think I might have missed out on a fair amount of awesome in the last 14 years. (14 years??? oh my gosh I am so old!!!!) I also needed a reminder that Desire is a pretty fantastic song.

Friday, June 13, 2008

All Aboard

When I was just a wee one my parents took my brother Sterling and I for a ride on the Heber Creeper. For those of you who don’t live in Utah, and perhaps even for those of you who do-the Heber Creeper is this great old train you can ride and see lovely parts of Utah you don’t see in your automobile. Both mom and dad were photography enthusiasts so we have all these cute photos from that day of Sterling and me on the train. What the photos do NOT show is the part where they staged a holdup halfway through the train ride. At the time of the “robbery”, my mom and I had gone to another car and weren’t sitting with my brother and my dad. I can still remember that when I saw the guy with a gun and a bandana tied over his mouth get on the train I thought, “my dad is dead. I’m sure they killed him.” I was absolutely terrified. I don’t think my mom realized at first because I also remember her kind of giggling while the robbers put on their little show. I have no idea how she explained to me that it was all pretend but I do know that the next time I got on a train I was 22 and my mission president was sending me on a six hour ride to the furthermost edge of the mission boundaries. And that it took a long time before the city of Heber stopped giving me the creeps.

Thankfully I wasn’t traumatized for life and I developed a bit of a taste for trains during my time in Europe. Trains tend to go the scenic route and are just so low maintenance compared to many other modes of travel-no parking, no security lines, dining cars-I just really enjoyed them.

So a few weeks ago I was busy being lazy and missed a carload of friends leaving for Rockport for the day so someone suggested I take the train and meet them there. So instead of sitting in traffic I was watching spectacular parts of New England go by out the window while someone else drove.

Wednesday night I was on another train coming home from New York. One of my coworkers pointed out that by the time you factor in getting to the airport an hour early, the inevitable wait on the runway and a taxi from La Guardia, it’s almost faster to take the train and get dropped off right at Penn Station. And it’s way, way more pleasant. Aside from my ridiculously fun charter plane experience a few weeks ago, I’m pretty sick to death of flying. Lines, delays, airport/plane food, cramped cabins, wasted hours of waiting-it’s just not fun. If it were at all feasible I would love to take the train pretty much everywhere.

Summer is heating up here in Boston and my friend Jeff just sent out his completely awesome 2008 mix. He said I could share so here you go


Thursday, June 12, 2008

A or B

It's possible that today was just a bad day. It's also possible that I'm just not very good at my job. Which as a single girl staring down about 60 more years of going this alone is just not the realization I particularly want to be coming to.

However, I'm really glad I remembered that this song is totally awesome.

That's my boy George Michael singing back-up. I have this vague feeling that something good was happening when this song came out because it's just making me so happy. I know, I'm weird.

Wednesday, June 11, 2008

The worst

Taxi drivers who try to take you the long way TO YOUR OWN HOME AT 11:00 AT NIGHT are on my black list!

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

Work out

I'm in New York right now putting together our little flagship retail store. And when I say "putting together", I mean that I've spent the last two days lifting and carrying and unpacking and nailing and sweating my guts out in a store with about 20 construction workers and my three male coworkers. It's been fun but I am so tired I think I want to die. More to come...

Sunday, June 08, 2008

The internet

is out at my house. i didn't realize how much I needed it.

Sunday, June 01, 2008

Childish Spark

I had yet another spooky marriage dream last night. I woke up to what was apparently my wedding day to discover that I couldn't seem to remember who I was marrying. But perhaps more disturbing then the fact that I had entirely forgotten my fiance, I was seriously considering going through with it anyway. I remember thinking, "well if I said yes I must have thought this was a good idea right?

Sometimes my subconscious really worries me.

Here is a delightful little song about making one of those "if we're 30 and not married let's get hitched" pacts.