Sunday, November 23, 2008

It's the Economy, Stupid

Since the economy is stagnating and no houses are selling, we have been economizing. And I, at least, have realized that there are many things that we have or do that just aren't that important. Here is a list. Feel free to add your own things if you are doing the same thing:
  1. Store-bought bread for dinner. Thank goodness Trish posted about the bread she makes. She gave me the courage to finally attempt baking bread again. Some batches are better than others, but the it's really empowering to master the yeast. And it only costs about $0.50 per loaf instead of $4.50. Now, I just need to learn to make sandwich bread.
  2. Friday night dinner out. We used to go to Mexican, Mellow Mushroom or Taco Mac every Friday for dinner. Mediocre food and crappy service but there was always beer. How else to celebrate the end of the week? Now, we make pizza (from scratch!) and watch a movie together in the basement.
  3. House cleaners. Sigh. I was sad to see this go, but scrubbing potties is easy and I can do a better job on the floor anyway.
  4. Fancy hair-dresser. After a couple of missteps, I've gotten the hang of coloring my own hair. And, when I took the girls to the Crossville Family Cuts, the lady who cut all of our hair (in 20 minutes flat!) told me that I didn't actually have any layers. Those folks at the salon had been charging me $50 to cut my hair straight across.
  5. Expanded channels on the TV. We won't get to watch Top Chef (Bravo) or the Ironman series (Versus) or Ninja Warrior (G4) anymore, but with some thoughtful Tivo-ing, I think we will be OK. Last night we even saw a "Keeping Up Appearances" that we'd never seen before.
  6. Grocery store produce. Doug planted a marvelous garden last spring and greens for the fall. The vegetables from there really make the other stuff seem lame.
  7. Buying less stuff means less garbage. Who knew?
  8. Doug is home more, so we get to hang out together. That's the best thing.

Sunday, November 16, 2008

Just Can't Get Enough

Running.

Just can't get enought running.

So, you know how my foot is hurt and I'm still not running regularly yet?

I hit upon the great idea that I could run with Annika. She is learning to run and I can't go very far so we are equally matched. I told Doug about this idea over dinner and while we were discussing how we could do the 0.4 mile loop behind the house once or twice, Annika piped up.

"I need to run by myself Mommy."

"Why? Wouldn't it be fun to run together?"

"Yes, but I'm FAST, Mommy."

Ouch.

So, for the Thanksgiving marathon, Doug is doing the full marathon. I'm going to drive him to the start and then volunteer at a water stop. I'm at water stop #2 for the marathoners, at the Artlite Supply store. Then, once my time is over, I will hightail it to the finish line to watch the half-marathoners come in. I'll miss all but the over 2 hr, 30 min crowd, but will be there for all marathoners. Anyone who has a friend running or wants to volunteer, here is the link. You can pick your time commitment and location from the list and register all on the convenient form. And, there is really good schwag. I tried to get them to let me bring the kids but they said no - the race is too cold and too long for kids. Luckily, we have an excess of family in town who are more than happy to have the girls for a couple of hours.

And for the ING marathon, it looks like I'll be relegated to the half again this year. Doug thinks I have time to train for the full, but I just don't think it is possible with the current heel situation. Seriously, my long run is 1.5 miles right now. I don't want to jump into training to far too fast and risk being out for next season. Sigh.

Tuesday, November 04, 2008

Curses, Foiled Again

I got to run this morning, which was awesome and gave me a chance to scope out the voting line (already there at 5:45am). I wasn't fast, but that is OK. Running is so much better than not running. And exponentially better than not walking.


Meanwhile, Doug made waffles for the girls and fed them breakfast. Then, Doug went for his run while I cleaned up the kitchen, showered and got everyone dressed. While Doug showered upon his return, I went to vote. I counted myself lucky because I got a parking space and sucked it up with my audiobook for two hours. Standing around is tiring. We scrounged some lunch and headed to the movie theater to watch High School Muscial 3 with Katie and her kids. Ugh. It was terrible. They did reprise some of the better songs from the first movie, but not enough. I kept telling myself that this was no worse than Footloose or Dirty Dancing. Or any of the other crappy movies we liked as kids. On the way home, we dropped Doug and Annika off at the polling place so Doug could vote. The front parking lot was not full and when I turned the corner to see the place I'd parked, there was not a car in the lot. We turned around and went back for Doug and Annika to find exactly zero (0) people in line to vote. There was a line for check in, but that was all.

Curses. I should have voted in the afternoon too!

In keeping with the witchy theme, here are Halloween photos of my scawwy witches.

First is Annika at the Book Character Parade. Just the title of this event is reason enough to pay for private school. Sigh. If only it were that simple.



Next is Dagny, after she comandeered some kid's tractor. Note Doug chasing her around the cul-de-sac. Luckily, the parents disconnected the battery shortly after this photo.



And lastly, photos of my two friends, courtesy of Aunt Katie who remembered her camera (unlike me).




Annika was right that witches don't wear pony tails. I should have left Dagny's hair down too. Aunt Jennie couldn't believe this was Annika's real hair. Hee.

The girls had a blast at the pre-trick-or-treat party and then going around with their friends and all of the other folks we found in the neighborhood in Papa's truck. I had to put the kaibosh on the nasty halloween rhymes from the over 7 set but true to form Dagny was the big winner again this year. I think it's because she was so loud with the "thank yous" and the "Happy Halloweens" and not so quick to dash to the next house. We spread the wealth around and divided the total haul between the kids. It's open for discussion how long the candy stays, but our church is collecting any extra to deliver here, which is a really cool idea. Much better than leaving it at the office to tempt everyone.