Monday, November 30, 2009

Gotta Love Her!

Roxy is one of those things where you have to be careful what you ask for because you just might get it.

Roxy is a long hair jack Russell. You know, like the Frasier dog. While I was shopping around for a dog, I decided that I wanted an active dog to go with my active personality. I could never imagine a lap dog. I needed a dog that I could run and hike with. Even one that I could ride my bike and could run along side me. A companion always ready for the beach.

Her favorite toy seems to be the ball with feet at the bottom. She chews off the feet and has taken the squeaky maker out of the orange ball. The red ball is hidden on Saturday mornings because at 7AM sharp, she jumps on my chest and starts squeaking the ball in my face.

She tickles my nose and licks my toes. She wakes me to play and greets me at the door. Why doesn't everyone wag their tail like that when they see me?

Did you notice the corner of the quilt? She chews on my sheets and my cycling socks. It is the norm to have muddy prints on the couch and comforter.

When I leave water bottle tops on the end table, she sneaks them in the back yard to be forever lost. I caught her on the sofa arm sniffing at the nativity scene. I hope baby Jesus doesn’t end up nibbled on in the back yard. Even as I type this, I found Baby Jesus on His side and the two lambs upside down. A little muddy and always ready to play, she is my girl, beard and all.

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Eve of Thanksgiving Ride

Wednesday evening Grant and I rode after work and were trying to beat the sunset. A few miles on the bike equals guilt free eating on Thanksgiving. Once the sun starts setting, it starts getting pretty nippy. I thought I over dressed with bike pants and flannel jersey but it seemed perfect for the ride home. My gears need a slight adjustment and were slipping into gear too easily. Hopefully, Ride Away will be opened on Friday for a quick fix.

Calories: 1477 (I think this will only cover half my turkey lunch.)
Miles: 28.71
Average: 11.2
Time: 2 hours 33 minutes
Total Accent: 1489

Fun factoid: My house is 659 feet above sea level.

I have so much to be thankful for this year. Happy thanksgiving to everyone!

Tuesday, November 24, 2009

The Holidays

The holidays are quickly approaching. This year I started early and have my Christmas boxes down from the attic. It took some time but I am slowly getting the spirit back.

It has been almost six years since my divorce and I remember the days of franticly cleaning the house, baking, cooking, and then cleaning again once everyone left. Nervous about my first turkey, I did the inevitable. Yes, I left the gizzards in. Thankfully, no one noticed and I pulled the bag out before serving.

The first year after my divorce, it was super hard. My house was empty. There was no rush of family, no one to bake for and no one to see my house decorated. Easily enough, I didn’t decorate. Having to bake for dinner at my parent house, I started at eight thirty in the morning with the pies along with a glass a wine. One of my girls, also recently divorced, joined me for a steak lunch. Anything to get our mind off the holiday. We drank another bottle of wine.

A month ago, my first Santa clause made its way up on the buffet. My Santa clause collection is growing exponentially from year to year and its fun finding new places for each one of them. The garland that I used to delicately wrap around the banister will be pulled from its box of a home and place around my living room, bed room and office.

The holiday spirit has come over me. I am engulfed with joy as I celebrate another year with my mom. Everyone should know that you don’t need a tragedy to live your life with the greatest gratitude.

Saturday, November 21, 2009


Of the many things that I have gained from my trip is a bunch of wonderful friends. They live all over the world but we still chat via email, facebook, or blogs. This past week, Rich’s wife was in SA for a conference and Rich made it in for the weekend. It was like there was no time that had lapsed from the last time I had seen him in ABQ and we picked right back up.

Hilary, Rich’s wife, continues to get Rich encouraged about the next leg of the trip. I hope he can make it so I have a familiar person to ride with.

Tuesday, November 17, 2009


Hopefully, your Monday was better than mine. For the past 10 years, my car has been nicely tucked in the garage every night. I can count the days that my car has been outside the garage. The time I moved and the time my kitchen was tiled. Both times, my garage was too crowded with stuff to park my car.

Except Sunday night. I am trying to get out of my mundane habits and not worry about little things and this was an attempt. After unloaded boxes of Christmas things and loading up my bike, I didn’t want to mess with moving Roberts’s car, moving my car, then moving Roberts’s car back. Robert is sick (hopefully not with the flu). I was exhausted. It was late, so I left the cars.

During the night, I remember it raining. The news said we had .10 inches of rain. When leaving for work I noticed my cup holder was filled with an inch of water. There was that moment when I was thinking, “What the heck, how did this water get in here. How did I spill this water and why didn’t I clean it up.”

Yup, I left my sunroof open all night. Normally, I don’t worry about the windows or the sunroof because my car is ALWAYS in the garage.

My seat is still wet, my carpet is soaked, and the tire pressure indicator light is flashing on the dash. At least the engine still turns over. Things like this happen and it makes me revert to the habitual person that I am.

Answers to comments:
Bob: The second leg is only to Champaign. Wish I could go all the way, but 21 days away from my home is pushing it.
Jim: No, Robert will not be joining me on my second leg. He still can not wrap his head around my desire to ride my bike across America much less do the ride himself.
You guys are the best! I love that you’re still out there following me and keeping in touch. Rich from ABQ will be here on Friday. Can not wait to visit and catch up.

Monday, November 16, 2009


Saturday’s ride brought out the usual Sunday ride crowd. Most rode the 55 miles out to New Braunfels but four of us cut the ride short. Robert is doing much better with the rides and seems to be enjoying the rides more. Or it could be that I don’t give him must rest time and keep him moving to prevent any time for complaining.

Oatmeal is my normal fuel before the ride. For low miles, I normally don’t need additional fuel, but I always carry a back up, just in case. Today, it was a Payday candy bar. Maybe I should give them up so I could loose the layer of fat over my belly, but yummy, they are so good. Peanuts, that nutritious, right?

Distance: 28
Calories: 1304
Time: 1:47
Average: 13.7
Total ascent: 1174

Wednesday, November 11, 2009

Happy Veterans Day

To my father and to all those who have served in the military, thank you for your service and for all you do for America. Like my Uncle Albert, some have paid the ultimate sacrifice. I am so grateful for the freedom we have and the opportunities that are available- only in America.

My father was eighteen years old when he was in the Army. During this time, he traveled to Korea and had some devastating experiences. As a newlywed, my mom traveled with him to Hawaii and then moved to Pennsylvania.

When I was in high school, Dad re-enlisted with the Air Force and was a weekend warrior. During my junior year, he went off to Desert Storm. He may have been gone for six weeks or six months, it is all a blur. My memory tries to protect me from that time without my father.

It has been some time, but my father is now retired military. At first, he struggled with having too much time on his hands but now he loves his free time and exploring local estate sales. Dad, I love you and proud of the dedication you have displayed.

Friday, November 6, 2009

Monkey See, Monkey Do

When I was in elementary school, I remember my family driving to Mexico and during the long drive; my sister and I had to go to the bathroom. My parents where not quite sure where a bathroom was much less a safe and clean bathroom. So, we improvised. My mother had us go to the bathroom in a cup while we were in the family van.

There was a time when I would hang out on the boat all day either on the lake skiing or in the middle of the gulf fishing. I learned that if I wanted to go out on the boat, I had to figure out how to pee in the water or the closest sand pile. Let’s just say I was a quick study.

My friends and I go to the bathroom in pairs. You would think that we could separate in the stall and finish our story after we take care of business, but no. We just keep on talking and pee at the same time.

My mom had a hard time believing this. Earlier this year mom was too weak to sit up and down and I had to escort her to the bathroom. Mom was so embarrassed. I tried to comfort her and tell her I do this all the time with my friends and not to worry, it is like a party that continues in the bathroom.

It is my fault, I started it. I am just doing what I know. On bike rides, I go to the bathroom behind a car or on the side of the road. Strategically, I will make sure there are no eyes in sight. It seems like Robert has become so used to seeing me squat on the side of the road that he has begun to go to the bathroom with the door open. This is taking it a little too far but I can not seem to break a habit that I have started.

Wednesday, November 4, 2009


OMGUAD! OMGUAD! OMGUAD! I am so super excited! My manager approved my 21 day vacation. One barrier is down and all is lining up for the next leg of my across America trip. All I am waiting for is the clear from my Mom. Even now, I still get permission from my mom to go on vacation. It is not just permission, but it is to ensure her health is holding.

This is crazy. The trip is 7 months away but I feel like the ride starts tomorrow. To add to my excitement, Tom Dunn sent me this picture of George and me climbing the first big hill out of Indio on the way to Blythe.

Though my miles taper off during the winter months, there are a few organized rides left this year. I have all the cold weather gear to keep me warm but I can not stand to ride in the cold. Below 70 degrees and it is hard for me to get on my bike. I know my friends will try to get me out on a cold weather ride and I hope to actually ride.

Sunday, November 1, 2009