Monday, February 27, 2012

white trash bunco night (wham-bam-thank-u-sam)

Upfront warning.. this blogpost is not about running (unless you count the sports bra and the heartrate monitor on the countertop), but instead it's about letting loose and having fun! In the fall of 2011, a close friend asked me be a sub for her bunco group. I've never played before, but she assured me that it was an easy game that was a good excuse to socialize. Kind of like our former book club but without the requirement to have actually read whatever book our friend had chosen. My daughter and her daughter are best friends, so what the heck. Later, one of the women decided that she wanted to start a "fun" bunco group because this one was too serious. And since I'm such a fun girl, I was recruited for this fun new bunco group. The first event was in January and the theme was a pajama party. That was fun, but now the creativity competition has begun.

February's theme was "white trash". All week emails have been exchanged amongst the group with all talking in "white trash" language. The buildup was hilarious! We were supposed to arrive with white-trash names. I had no clue what to pick so put out a quick plea on Facebook for suggestions. I wasn't completely sure how to dress, but thankfully my daughter had ideas that combined with mine created the first two images.. And after she helped me create my look, I knew that Mike's suggestion of a name was perfect.. I became Wham-Bam-Thank-U-Sam. You can't tell from the pic, but I'm also wearing a short denim skirt and camoflage slippers. Baby Wilson popped out immediately afterwards :)

The hostess and her family really got into the theme. We arrived at her home to find cars in the front yard with the hoods up, unshaven men wearing overalls and camo while drinking PBR, a clothesline across the front porch with bras and underwear flying in the wind, rasslin (wrestling) on the big screen TV, cardboard signs, and beer cans lining the mantle. One of the women in this photo lives over an hour away. She had so much fun that she wants to become a permanent member of our bunco group!

The husband of the host and his buddy had fun too. These fun men laughed and scratched and prepared a special treat for us ladies.. possum and vienna sausage to be eaten with shots of red bull/cheap liquor!

I felt much better about myself after seeing this poor, battered, pregnant mom with a cigarette dangling out of her mouth, a baby in her arms and a beer in her hand.

Poor kid was embarrased to witness the winner of the wet t-shirt contest! We eventually played Bunco and the prizes were equally hilarious.. bottles of Boonesfarm wine, fly swatters, cans of spam, etc. She really set the bar high for future Bunco hosts.. My month to host is June. My daughter suggested that I pick the "ghetto gangsta rappers" theme. What do you think? Any suggestions?

Saturday, February 18, 2012

reset button

I hinted about it in my last post.. Work stress has been insane and it was brought to a head on Thursday evening. We had scheduled a "planning session" with key citizens on one of my work projects and they had other plans. They invited the local TV news and went on the attack. If the TV camera had not been there I would have walked out of the meeting. The allegations were mostly against other co-workers that weren't present; people I admire and respect. I had a gut instinct earlier in the week that they were scheming something and my gut was right. We endured it, and laughed about parts of it later while we decompressed at one of the few late-night restaurant/bars. I had decided on Wednesday, that I was going to hit the "reset button" this weekend.. Time to leave work at work and focus on family, friends, and self on nights and weekends rather than checking email after hours. Apparently my pets feel the same way! I made the mistake of leaving my work cell phone on the kitchen counter last night; the cat batted it off the counter for the dog to destroy..

Today I ran the "Run the Reagan" half marathon. This is my favorite local half marathon and I've run it many times. I haven't trained as much as I should have, so I decided to treat this as an EASY long run to wipe away the insane stress of the week rather than as a race. Minimal soreness hours lager (can easily walk up/down stairs with no pain) and have another medal to add to the collection! Best part was getting a hug from my daughter-from-another-mother who was running the 5K; I saw her a mile from the end when the later starting 5K merged with the slower half marathoners near the finish. We stopped and hugged, not caring how it affected our times. It was also great seeing her mother, brother and other friends after the race.

I came home with the plans of taking a shower, eating lunch and taking a nap. All things that contribute to "hitting the reset button". After I showered, I was putting on comfy jeans when I heard the text tone that always makes my heart skip a beat. Did I hear right? I've assigned different/special text tones to my favorite peeps. Obviously we have a psychic connection because every time I either decide to forget about him or have a strong urge to talk to him, he re-connects :). And boy did he reconnect today.. Most of our chats during the past few months have been short, but today we texted throughout the afternoon and into the night. I thought my boyfriend and I were going to go out tonight since we made plans last night, but he didn't answer my phone call and has not replied to my texts and it's after 10 pm. I am disappointed. Oh well, at least I've had a smile on my face all day from texting with Mr. Sexy! Reset button has truly been hit!

Monday, February 13, 2012

the vow

Regaining control. I've been under a LOT of work stress the past few months. Have worked long hours, sacrificed time with family/friends/fitness/sleep, with very little reward. Don't get me wrong, my managers are very pleased and offer praise. I've put in many hours and feel good about my accomplishments. But I am a government employee and there are some citizens that are on a vendetta. No matter what good I do, a few will continue to berate me and my fellow co-workers. I recently took a stand in an email and said that one person's bullying tactics wouldn't work on me. I let the chaos of a few direct my energy. I awoke at 3:30 a.m. this morning (and many others), insanely stressed, and couldn't go back to sleep. I wallowed in the stress for an hour or so and then forced my mind to focus on something zen-like.

My daughter climbed into my bed at some point during the night so I first focused on her sweetness. I then looked at Facebook and observed the new photo-shoots of my favorite pro-athlete/friend as he begins training camp. I reflected upon our last conversation a few days ago. I make a conscious decision to make him my rock in this chaos of my current life. He is so far removed and pulled me through many challenges last year. He is the pentacle, but others will make up the foundation, which include the amazing guy that I'm currently dating, my daughter, Angela, Carter, Terri, and my other close friends/co-workers.

I have an App on my iPhone for zen motivational quotes. The quote for today was "Each problem has hidden in it an opportunity so powerful that it literally dwarfs the problem. The greatest success stories were created by people who reconginized a problem and turn it into an opportunity." (Joseph Sugarman). This can be interpretted in so many different ways. But I chose today to turn this problem into an opportunity to redirect my energy to the people that are supportive, rather than caustic.

I saw the movie "The Vow" with a close friend today. I connected emotionally on so many different levels. The theme was impact. The instant attraction/connection they had brought one person to the forefront of my mind. The mother's "choice" to stay with her husband that had an affair reminded me of a very painful part of my life. The music by The Cure at the end brought back a spectrum of memories that the prior ones had already hit on. The entire movie brought back memories from different time frames of my life; all that have shaped me into who I am today. Some were painful, some were ecstatic, but all were reaffirming about what truly matters.

I typically focus my blog posts on running-related topics, so I'll close with this. Groundhog day 12 runstreak complete :)

Thursday, February 2, 2012

Groundhog Day take 2

Last year I attempted a Groundhog Day runstreak. I needed a kickstart, a motivator, during the winter months when my running motivation naturally wanes. Brrrrr... baby it's COLD OUTSIDE! The goal was to run at least one mile a day. I made it through 2/27/11. Several of those runs were done in drudgery on the hamster wheel because I was too wimpy to venture out into the cold.

This year is different. My treadmill is dead so I'm forced to run outside (except while on biz trips that require hotel stays). It's also different because I met a pro athlete last summer and he continues to inspire me. Every time my mind comes up with an excuse to not exercise, the other half of my brain chimes in claiming that if I had pursued my childhood dreams of becoming a pro-athlete, instead of a rocket scientist, that I would get my lazy butt out of bed and go for a run. But the reality is.. my profession is as a scientist, not an athlete, and I'm a mom too, so I won't belittle the one-milers when that's all I have the time for.

Happy Groundhog's Day! General Lee, the groundhog in my town, says spring is just around the corner :)