Saturday, August 28, 2010

It's been a while

Fought the alarm clock this morning. Woke up the first time. Reset the second alarm and then slept through it.

This wasn't what I wanted to do this morning. But, I told myself I needed to.

After I finally crawled out of bed at 7:45 and got myself dressed, Bentley kept giving me this look. You know, the puppy-dog-eyes. So I suited him up and brought him with. I also put in my new Yurbuds. (Thanks Jill!!! They were awesome by the way! If you want to win your own pair, check out Katye's giveaway here.)

As we walked down the driveway I could feel this sensation building in my stomach. It was not the Brown was Excitement!!! I was excited to run! When we crossed the crack in the road that I always use as a starting line I was practically dancing! I have missed this feeling!

I could tell that it had been a while since I ran. My legs were tight and my stride was short. But all that mattered was that I was moving forward. Bentley and I only needed 2 short walk-breaks! Our time wasn't fantastic, but it was faster than expected.

2.01 miles in 22.12 minutes. Not bad I say.

We're running again tomorrow before I head in to get some school work done.

Happy Running!!

Wednesday, August 25, 2010


Warning!!! I will be whining a lot in this post!!!

The past 48 hours have been stressful!! I now know why teachers quit. I am by no means quitting, but I'm just saying I know why they can walk away so easily after only a few years on the job.

Holy cow!!!!

Here's a small recap of some events:

Network switch over this summer caused the entire order of assignment notebooks and grade books to disappear.....I don't have a grade book and my students don't have assignment notebooks.

Sent 8 first graders home on the wrong bus after school on Tuesday because the transportation department didn't tell us that they were labeling buses differently this year. All our buses are labeled with an "R" and then a number (R1, R2, etc.). Two buses showed up yesterday labeled RAL1 and RAL2 along with the other "R" buses. These first graders got on the RAL1 bus instead of the R1 bus. No one told us there was a difference and they don't line up in number order, so it was confusing. Ugh!!!

2nd grade started with a sub in one classroom because our principal dragged her feet on hiring another teacher....they will have a sub for at least 3 more days because of district regulations for job postings.

5th grade needed 2 more students to register in order to add a 4th section. As of 2:35 this afternoon the second student registered. Instead of posting an opening for a 5th grade teacher, the superintendent is trying to decide whether or not she should deny this student enrollment even though he lives in the neighborhood. This would force him to go to another school and keep us at max student load of 27/class instead of 20/class with a 4th section!!!!! (PS...we have contract language stating that if we exceed 27/class we must add another section.)

That SMART Board that I have.....doesn't work because I don't have a computer to power it. Received an e-mail at 3:30 saying that I could pick up my laptop if I attended a training from 3-4 at the district office this afternoon. Hmmm....I can't get the laptop without the training. No make-up session has been scheduled.

Pulled muscles at kickboxing class on Monday night and still have trouble climbing the stairs :(

Saturday! Where are you?!?!? Must run soon!!!

Thursday, August 19, 2010


I am a lucky winner in Jill's Yurbuds giveaway!!! How awesome!!!

I have been in a funk the last couple of days and the sucky parts of life have really been getting to me. Seeing my name on Jill's blog reminded me that good things do happen and that the sucky parts are temporary. Thank you Jill for hosting an amazing giveaway!! I can't wait to try out my new Yurbuds and write a review :)

Here's an update on the school situation:

Background: I currently teach 5th grade at a school that I've been teaching at for 4 years. Over the summer, our school received grant money that allowed them to purchase a SMART Board for each grade level. This sounds great, but when you have 3 sections of each grade level, it led to some fighting over who was going to get the board in their room. I, despite having taken 2 classes and creating multiple lessons for this piece of technology, was passed over due to seniority. The teacher who received it over me simply has an "interest" in technology. She hasn't even seen one of these boards before! I have not been happy about this.

Last week, after registration numbers finally started to finalize, my principal called me and told me that I would be moving rooms to accommodate some overflow that was occurring. Let it be known that I volunteered for this move after hearing that the overflow was going to happen and a "new" teacher was going to be put into a classroom that had a SMART Board and I was going to be stuck in a room that still had a chalk board and no working printer! This overflow also meant that instead of having 27 kids in each class we would have 20 kids in each class. Perfect! A SMART Board and a small class! What more could I ask for? (This was the Lucky Day I posted about last week)

Sadly, the very next week, the superintendent calls my principal and says that enrollment numbers were goofed and that we can't have and overflow section anymore. Now we're back to having 27 students per classroom. This isn't horrible, but we won't have a lot of wiggle space in my room this year. At all. We're also only 2 students away from having an overflow section again. So I could be changing everything around again in the next week! Oh....and did I mention that we start school on Tuesday? And that is just one small part of the school drama. We still can't get into the parking lot or the bus lane because of construction. The school still needs to hire 2 more teachers. The building will be closed all weekend because they are waxing the floors so teachers can't get in to do last minute stuff. Drama. Drama. Drama. I almost don't even want to go back.

However...I still get my "dream" room with the SMART Board. Check it out!!! (This is before I was "done" decorating. And before all 27 desk found there way in here. And yes, those are the original desks from 1962 when the school was built. Some of my students' parents sat in those very same desks. Sad.)

Expect some better pictures next week :) Hopefully school starts on time without a hitch!

Wednesday, August 18, 2010


That's what I feel like right now.

After all that training for my half marathon, all that running all summer long, and it's all over. I feel.....well.....aimless. I have other races scheduled for the fall, but they are what I can now call "short" races that don't require intense training like the half did. I kinda feel lost.

What do you do when you're not really training for anything? What should my goals be? Now that school is starting, I will have a lot of time-juggling that needs to be done, but I do want to run at least 3-4 times a week. I can't see myself having time to run every day and make my gym membership still worth paying for...and finding time to sleep or spend time with my husband. I'm thinking I'll be doing mostly afternoon/evening runs and will need to invest in some good reflective/light-up gear. Where does one buy a head-lamp? I haven't seen one at my local running store and I've spent a lot of time there this summer.

Don't forget to check out Jill's Yurbuds giveaway! She's giving away 3 pairs, so I've got to have a pretty good chance, right?!?!

Thursday, August 12, 2010

Lucky Day & A Giveaway!

The school situation = best freakin' news ever!!!!!!!!!!! I couldn't even concentrate on the information from the workshop I was at this morning. This excitement was so much that I even forgot to eat lunch! I will update you all with full details and pictures as soon as I can. But for now...just know that I am one happy little bug! Eeek!

Oh yea....

And Jill over at Finishing is Winning is hosting a giveaway. Somehow she got hooked up with 3 pairs of Yurbuds to giveaway! How sweet is that? Click on over and check it out here.

And don't forget about Courtney's Ryders Sunglasses giveaway.

Wednesday, August 11, 2010

More miles and a race regisration

I got up and got some miles in before my workshop this morning. It wasn't as hard to talk myself into as I thought :) It's been quite a while since I've done a run by myself, and this kinda felt weird. But I popped in my iPod and went for it. It's also been a while since I've listened to my iPod while running. But today, I needed it. The music kept me going. I really felt like I was flying :) The time you will see in my Daily Mile widget isn't super fantastic, but sub 11-minute miles are great at this point. I'd like to be sub 10-minute by my next race.

Speaking of my next race, I mailed in my registration for my next race! It will be a 4 mile trail race in September. What I think I will like most about this race is that it is sponsored and benefiting the Girl Scouts. It is also being held at a local Girl Scout camp. I, having been a Girl Scout as a kid, spent many summers at this camp. They happen to be some of my most horrific memories from my was not a good experience for me. Anyway...I'm looking forward to going back to this camp, running the 4-mile trail race, and kicking those bad memories once and for all! Plus, the race is called the Thin Mint Sprint! That means cookies! Who doesn't love GS Cookies?!?! Me...because I can't eat them. But I will be making an exception after the race if they are available. :)

Anyway...summer is over like I've said before. School is still a messy situation and I have workshops to attend for the rest of the week. I'm looking to put more miles on my shoes on Friday morning if the weather is good. We're under a heat advisory for the rest of the week. Yuck!

Now I just need to decide on my October race.....

Monday, August 9, 2010

Summer's Over

What?!?! Over?!?! No!!!

Sadly yes, for me, summer is over. I went back into my classroom today. Only two weeks until school starts and I need to get ready. All of the ideas that have been exploding inside my head all summer now need to be focused and put into practice.

I'm not even going to describe the nightmare that the first few weeks of school is going to be. Student registration is still unfinished...there are still teachers to hire for our is possible that classrooms might be switched at the last minute...I am missing a printer in my classroom...there is no wireless internet in my wing of the building as promised...the street in front of our school is torn up and you can't even get into the parking lot because of a 5-foot-wide trench that has been dug...and did I mention that they have 2 weeks (10 business days) to fix all of this? And that ain't all sister!

And somehow, despite all of this, I am still planning to run and attend classes at the gym. I'm going to need that "me time" in order to stay sane here!

I'm sure I'll post some pictures of the room when it's all done and pretty :)

Friday, August 6, 2010

Another Giveaway!

Courtney at Run, Courtney, Run is hosting a Ryders Sunglasses giveaway. For full details check out her post here.

I have been trying to win a pair of these sunglasses for a long time :) Let's hope some of my "luck" pays off with this one!

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Back to it

I ran 2.5 this morning with my sister and good old Bentley. It felt great! My sister says I was "faster." I don't know about that, but I'm glad she said it. My goal at the moment is to improve my speed. I want to run at least one 5K each month until the end of the year. The 5K's in our area stop in November because of the weather. But, I am going to get more that a t-shirt in those races!

Also, tomorrow morning there is a beginners cycling (spin) class at my gym. I am going to follow in Lisa's pedal spins and try my luck with this class. The sweat will pour, from what I'm told! Fingers crossed that I don't fall off the bike and make a fool of myself :)

Happy running!

Monday, August 2, 2010

Rock N' Roll Chicago Half Race Report

What an experience this thing was! I cannot describe the family-drama that surrounded this weekend, but it was enjoyable nonetheless.

Ok….the race report you’ve all been waiting for! I’m going to steal Katye’s format and divide this up into sections.

The Trip:

Husband and I were all packed on Friday night and ready to go. After a trip to Noodles & Co. to carb-load, we watched a movie and headed to bed. We were up early Saturday morning to catch a Yoga class before heading out of town. The plan was to meet up with his sisters and ride in together. I won’t describe the drama, but after some miss-communication on our end, we dropped Bentley & Doozer at my mom’s and we were off. Around O’Hare airport, traffic crawled to a stop and it took forever for us to get from there to downtown. While sitting in traffic we heard from the Sisters and decided just to meet at the expo.

The Expo:

The signs for parking were not as clear as they seemed. We drove back and forth for 15 minutes trying to find lot C. We asked 3 different parking attendants before we finally got an answer. Eventually we made it inside around 3:00. I missed meeting up with Katye at the expo L The Sisters wanted to start in the same corral so I switched mine at check-in. After that, we walked around, bought some Bondi Bands, and tried samples. My main purchase was a supply belt. I needed something to carry my GU Chomps and my inhaler while I run. I finally found a reasonably priced one and bought it. Husband and Sister-in-Law #1(SIL#1) bought on

e too! We giggled about our fanny-packs later that evening. I enjoyed the expo but thought there was more space to walk around last year. It seemed cramped this time.

Our hotel (The Wit) was fantastic! Something I never would have picked on my ow

n, but I totally recommend it. We discovered that they were filming Transformers 3 just around the corner! On our walk to dinner we actually got to see them film an action scene! It’s

not every day you witness automatic-weapon fire in Chicago and have it be harmless! The picture is of a scene we watched them film of a bunch of guys running out of that building. There are hunks of twisted metal and cement a

ll over the place. You can see cars piled up on the left. I was disappointed that Optimus Prime wasn’t there, but it was still cool!


I was a little emotional when we crossed the starting line. This was the biggest thing I’ve done for myself, ever! It was a big moment. Running toward that skyline was beautiful. What brought me back was running past a guy holding a sign that said, “You are all really, really good at exercise!” I started laughing and pulled it together. The Sisters and I decided to stick together as far as we could….and thank God for them!

We stopped to pee at the first water station and were good to go after that. I was smiling, feeling great, and running well for the first 8 miles. I was loving the scenery and really feeling the energy. I grabbed cytomax and water at each station and sipped them slowly until I couldn’t carry the cups anymore. Wow! Amazing! I didn’t even use my iPod!

At the turn-around (mile 9ish) I ran smack into The Wall. We had lost SIL#2 and I told SIL#1 that I needed to slow down. I was able to trot to mile 10 and then it was walk/run from there. At the time, I was OK with walking. I had cramps in my legs, my lungs hurt, and it was humid as heck! At mile 11 SIL#2 caught up with me and we ran/walked together for a while. After she left me I tried and tried to keep it together and to keep moving forward.

I found her again after mile 12. So glad I did. She was having an asthma attack and there was no one to help! I gave her my inhaler and we walked for a bit. When she felt better we trotted for a bit and then went back to running. In the last half-mile my quads cramped up on me. I was forced to walk again. I knew I couldn’t stop or they would seize up. The finish was so close! I screwed up my nerves, fought through the cramps, and finished…..big smile, arms up, victory! I was done.

Final race thoughts: just let this be over!

We look Hot!....and really sweaty!


SIL#2 finished with me and she didn’t look good. I walked with her through the madness that was the finish area. We got water, towels, and medals. Husband had finished waaaaay before us and was on the sidelines yelling and waving with her husband. SIL#1 had also finished waaaay before us and was there too. Husband snuck through the gates and we got our picture together. I managed to get an orange Popsicle (my favorite) and we headed to gear check. After that, we met up with The Sisters in the reunion/beer area. I don’t get the beer-after-the-race thing, plus I can’t drink it anyway, so I donated mine to Husband and Brother-in-Law. SIL#2 was really not feeling good at this point, so we decided to get her to the shade. After she felt slightly better, we wanted to get her back to the hotel as soon as possible.

On the way home we kept our post half-marathon tradition of stopping at Superdawg. We started this last year after watching something about hot dogs on the Travel Channel last year before Husband ran the half. Superdawg was on the way out of town and we couldn't miss it! Love the place!

So there you have first half-marathon race report. It was really long. It was really hard. I don't really know if I liked it or not. I'm proud of myself for doing it and for finishing it. I want try another one just so that I can do better!

I'm still sad I didn't get to meet up with Katye, Courtney, and Tonia! They all ran awesome races and had a great weekend. Congrats to all of you! There has to be another race in the future and I'll meet them some day :)

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Rock N' Roll Chicago

I finished my first half!

Time: 2:43:22
(Not the greatest, but I finished!)

Pics and a recap to come :)

Congrats Katye, Courtney, and Tonia on finishing that race as well! I know Katye got a PR! How about you?