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Sunday, October 31, 2010

Week in recap, return to running and miscellaneous stuff...

Friday was company usually gets into Halloween, big time. Which is funny, because when I first started with them 10.5 years ago, I was one of a handful of people who dressed up each year. Then the floor/department competitions started and it all went CRAZY!

Halloween 2006...We did a Tim Burton theme...I'm the Case Worker from Beetlejuice.

Halloween 2007...we decided to decorate as Christmas (really?!?), so, of course, I decide to be a Christmas present...a a box. I lost best costume to some chick with rubber snakes in her hair...did the judges not see that I was IN.A.FREAKING.BOX?!

Halloween 2008...our first year doing a Haunted House, complete with a Thriller Zombie Dance. This is the year we won best team and best area decorations.

Halloween 2009...continuing with the Haunted House, we did it with a Fairy Tale theme...I'm rocking the cradle...hehehe...note the glow in the dark zombie eyes. You can find a lot of stuff on the Internet!!

This year, it was decided (by survey) that Halloween was getting a tad out of control, as many departments would work for months (yes, months) on costumes and decorations and were at the office till midnight the night before...all for one day of fun. So this year, we had a Halloween Bash in the main lobby instead. Dress up if you wanted to (and many did) and decorate if you wanted to (didn't go around to see) but we (the committee) would handle games, candy, music, prizes and, of course, a Haunted House. We did a pretty good job, we think, except we learned that all the lights couldn't be shut off, so it wasn't as dark and spooky as it could be. We know for next year now.
During the day, I was Sue Sylvester from Glee (forgot my camera at home)...

And during the Bash, I spent my time running around, making grown-ups scream like little girls! Good times!!!

All proceeds (food and money) for an iPad prize went to our Together is Amazing food bank campaign, and I think was hugely successful. We'll have to wait to hear what people thought of the new format and see if we'll do the same thing next year. I still had fun.

Came home to find a lump in my bed...whatever is it???

It's George, thinking he's a wild, jungle kitty, hiding in a cave...

Finally got my precious Gold card from Starbucks...yes, I spend that much money! Where's your Gold card, Jamie?! LOL!

Lined up my marathon bling...Toronto definitely wins, hands down! I weighed it, and it does come in at one pound, exactly. Calgary (the middle one) is a belt buckle, because it was always known as the Stampede Marathon, before it was moved to May. And Vancouver was my first. I'm waiting on a display rack I ordered this week, so that I can proudly display my bling, rather than tossing it on a desk or in a drawer.

After meeting up with H-woman Friday night, we hit up a local pub for beers and burgers. Okay, I had a burger (yummo) and H-woman had a steak salad. But I did also have a pint...came home with a headache though, that nagged me all day Saturday as well. Napping and Advil didn't really make it go away, so I had a very low-key day. After all, I wanted to return to running on Sunday.

Earlier this week, I decided to try the Epicure French Onion soup mix...I tried and really like the Seafood Chowder, so thought, how can they mess up this one?? First off, let me state that I LOVE Epicure and almost everything we sell. But man, did they mess up with the French Onion soup...which is a classic in it's simplicity...onions, beef stock, red wine. Top with cheesy toast and voila! Our soup was yellow...icky, turmeric yellow. What the????? Okay...I decided not to judge it on colour, but on taste...patooey is all I have to say! I had one spoonful and dumped the rest of the pot down the sink. However, I was still craving French Onion soup, so I made some from scratch yesterday...with onions (one white, one yellow, one red) that I fried up till they were a brown, gooey mass, beef stock and my Meritage red wine. Toast with Swiss Gruyere and another type of Swiss cheese (I eat that on the side because there is nothing more foul than soggy bread) and a Caesar salad to up the vegetables. I am a good cooker!

Met up with a few ladies from marathon clinic (and boot camp) this morning and decided to head out for a "nice, slow 10km"...after all, I'm just two weeks off finishing a marathon, M. is recovering from a stress fracture that has kept her from running for the past 3 months, and the other M. has had plantar issues for weeks. Well...the best laid plans, right? We headed out with K. (my former 5:45 pacer) and another lady and found ourselves pushing our pace quite quickly at 7:15-7:23...just for comparison, for a 5 hour finish, our Sunday slow pace was 8! I joked with K. (who stated several times that she wanted to run slow) that she was setting the pace (she was in front) and we were all struggling to keep up! She and the other lady turned back early (they wanted to do a set of stairs) so myself and the M's continued on and slowed down our pace...a bit. We finished (despite 6:58 showing up on Mr. Garmin) 10.29km at an average pace of 7:35, which while faster than we wanted, still felt good for all three of us. After a cup of coffee and a breakfast wrap, I came home to this sight...queen sized bed and they have to snuggle on my top! Awwwww...

Enjoying some leftovers ( very good the next day!) and the Amazing Race. Hope you all had a great weekend and have an awesome week ahead (supposed to hit +20 in Calgary by Thursday...only took till November for us to get a summer.

Happy Halloween

Thursday, October 28, 2010


Where has the week gone?

Busy Monday, came home and was in bed by 10pm.

Boot Camp Tuesday: 1st time indoors - jury is still out on that one. Bed early as well.

Wednesday - after donating blood at work in the morning, I met up with everyone at the usual Wednesday pub for the marathon completion celebration party. I won "best bling" 1 pound medal easily kicked all the puny medal's butts!!

Tonight: after spending 3.5 hours setting up and decorating our "Haunted House" at work, I whipped home, via Shopper's Drug Mart (more stuff), then off to Value Village (a mask for tomorrow's costume # 2) and lastly Walmart - even more stuff.
Came home and had dinner of McDonald's (after today's weigh-in debacle, I surprised myself with that choice, but it was 9pm and I was hungry!) before whipping up pumpkin cheesecake and gathering everything else I need to take into work.

I will be up at the crack of stupid tomorrow to drive, and haul everything in to work. Finish up the final touches on the Haunted House, run around driving people crazy with costume #1 (Sue Sylvester from Glee!), have Potluck (I just finished baking said cheesecakes), change into costume #2 (scary death dude) and then run the Haunted House from 2-4pm, doing my best to make people scream like little girls! Then it's tear down and meet up with H-woman for dinner and a much needed catch-up gab session.

I'm tired already...


Sunday, October 24, 2010


I finally got caught up on Glee. Granted, it took some serious couch time to go through the 77 DVD's (skipped all the extras, which I'll view another day) as well as another 4 hours on the PVR, but I am all caught up in time for next week's Rocky Horror extravaganza! I do like the makes me cry, it makes me laugh and it has me tapping my toe throughout. And Matthew Morrison is just HOT! If my high school teachers looked like that, I may have paid more attention in class!!! And my costume for Halloween is now complete, after stopping into the local sports store Friday night. Add the megaphone (that arrived on Thursday) and my tracksuit...Sue Sylvester comes to Calgary!
After I crashed on Thursday, it was up and at 'em on Friday to go get Mom and head downtown to meet up with the new doctor. It is a strange process to be going through after 40+ years with the same physician and poor Mom is just freaking confused. "All this fuss just for Synthroid"... It is probably a blessing that Mom really is healthy, other than her memory. If she was Dad, with all the crap he was on at the end...oi vay.

After having lunch with Mom, and taking her back out to buy a watch and more chocolates (10 days...the TWO boxes I bought her before I left lasted 10 days!!! And these weren't small boxes!), I left her with a stern warning to eat more than just chocolate and headed for home. Had lunch of leftover rice and then proceeded to fall asleep on the couch. I woke up with 3 minutes to get changed and ready and on the road to boot camp. Pulled up right behind Trainer Josh, and off we went. After a warm up run of Douglas Fir (which I'm going to run every weekend on my own, as long as the snow doesn't close it), we went back to our mats and the torture began! Starting at the one set of picnic tables (we're still outdoors, but Friday was the last night), we did leg lifts with shoulder presses and then curls. Run to our mats and do push-ups, flip over and drop leg overheads. Run to the bands and do overhead extensions and more shoulder presses, run to the last set of tables and do step-ups followed by dips. Return to start, repeating everything. After the curls, we added bent over rows, at the mats we added toe touches, at the bands we added jumping jacks. After the steps and dips, return, repeating everything. Just when we thought we were done, we added incline narrow grip push-ups, full body bike and curls. Back and forth, back and forth we went. As much as my legs were tired through, I was really happy to be back. I heart boot camp!

Next week is a freebie week, for anyone (in Calgary, of course) who would care to join me. We're moving indoors for the next session, which I'm not completely sold on yet. I actually hate working out've seen me after a run outside on a bitterly cold winter day...move that inside and I'm likely just to burst into flames!!! But I love boot camp more, so I will suck it up for the couple of sessions to get us through the winter. And Josh is keeping one of the classes outside (Friday nights) so I'll still get my fresh air fix. Anyway, if you're interested, join me at the 5pm class at the Rosscarrock Community Centre, 4411 - 10 Ave SW. Bring a set of weights and a mat and a desire to sweat. If you like the class, sign up.

Came home and grazed dinner Friday night, with a little of this and a little of that. I did bring home Safeway's red curry chicken soup which was really, really, really good! I did thaw some ground pork and beef Saturday morning and made a mushroom loaded meatloaf for supper. Add some smashed potatoes, skins and all, and a side of veggies with mushroom gravy and I had a good supper Saturday night.

I was in the mood for pancakes this weekend too (I'm still in carbo mode, as I also inhaled a small loaf of rye with dip over the last two days), so I mixed up some Coyote buttermilk and topped them with maple pecans and peaches (boil maple syrup in pan, added pecans and cook till they are coated and candied...throw in peach slices and heat through). A grand way to start the day.

Got the yard cleaned up in time for next week's forecast...yes, the "s" word...and today have done 4 loads of laundry to get that caught up. Next I'll go vacuum the hallways and wash some floors. Boy, do I know how to rock out the last days of my vacation or what?!?

That's if for me.


Thursday, October 21, 2010


Went to bed way early last night, after a great visit with Cathy's sister, hubs, kids, Mom & Dad. Cathy and I met in High School (yes, was THAT long ago!) when her Dad was transferred to Calgary, and have kept in touch. Obviously the miles got in the way (Cathy moved back to Toronto after university) but it was like old times with everyone sitting around and yakking all at once. Okay, so there were way more kids than before (last time I was out, the youngest son was just a belly bump) but it was like nothing had changed. We had a huge pot of goulash, smashed potatoes, mac & cheese (homemade, of course), salad, and finishing the night off with lemon loaf and ice cream. Nom, nom, nom...of course, I had to fight two teen aged boys for food, but I think I did okay!!! Then it was good night, and rush upstairs to pack, as my flight left Toronto at 8am. However, Cathy took me in when she went to work (at the airport, oddly enough) at 6:30am! That means I was up and at 'em at 5am (or 3am Calgary time) and am proud to say still going strong. Okay, so there may have been a brief nap around 4, but more of that later.

Picture recap of the week:

An area the locals call Mars. This is from our fall colours drive on Saturday. Very cool place, as the ground really is red (Terra cotta).

To prove I was in Canada...not on the Red Planet!

My official maple leaf fall picture...not too shabby, if I do say so myself.

Race day...running down Yonge Street.

And now 5+ hours later!!!

Upright and smiling, always.

Sunburn in October in Canada?!?! Who would have thunk it?????

More fall colours (on my stroll to find Starbucks).

Terry the cute!

The pool...which sadly they closed up the week before I got there. I don't swim, but dipping the legs in would have been awesome! Oh well, I recovered just fine without it. Next time I visit though...Cathy...I may have committed to coming out to visit again! LOL!

On our last afternoon, Cathy and I drove to Don Mills to check out McEwan's. Yes, I am that much of a Food Network geek!!! Kind of hoping he'd be there, because Mark McEwan is HOT, but I was just as happy to wander the aisles and check things out. I admit I had to buy something, as well as the purple go bag, and came home with some spices (that I don't have or sell), some McEwan rubs and a curried mustard that is amazing, based on the initial taste! How I managed to pack everything (also had to stop at another great store to buy some Mango Coconut Pepper sauce...all I have to say is O.M.G!!!!!!!), including the 26.2 book, running jacket and top that I bought at the Expo. It all was tight, but it all fit.

Yes...I had my camera in the store. I did say I was a geek...

Stopped for lunch at the deli counter and had the most amazing mushroom, brie and truffle aioli on ciabatta...EVER...oh, and so excited, as I also found Chobani yogurt (haven't found it out here yet). Wow!! So good. Worth all the blogger hype.

After sitting at the airport, nursing a Starbucks and a fruit yogurt parfait, Cathy went off to work. I was also making certain that I took the recommended dose of the air sickness pills I picked up at the natural food store. They appeared to have worked just fine, as nary a roll. But then again, the pilot today didn't do a loop-d-loop, like the dude on Friday did! I swear that's what happened. Of course, what else made today's flight so much better is that I got bumped. Yes, the elusive, almost unheard of bump up to Business /First Class (whatever they call it these days). I got to sit on the either side of the blue curtain. They get food!!! For free!!!! Okay, so the tickets cost twice as much as a normal flight, but still. I didn't get breakfast though, as I was an "extra body" and they only had a pre-determined number of breakfasts. The stewardess (so not PC, but I don't know what they're called these days) did offer to get me something from the other tray, but I did have the yogurt and was honestly fine. I sat in a big, comfy seat, watched the Karate Kid and generally enjoyed my flight. Okay, not going to lie...the fresh baked cookies and ice cream did seal the deal!
Got off the plane (nice, bump free landing, I may add), spied my mountains and knew I was home! Walked right to a cab and was in my door, hugging my fur-children by 11am. Then I was changed and back out the door 20 minutes later, so I could go to Weight Watchers. Happy to say that I was down another 2 pounds this week. This week's meeting was about attitude (vs. fatitude) and I decided that I need to look at my weight loss the same way I look at a marathon. Break it into pieces, conquer one section at a time, celebrate the small victories and finish, upright and smiling!
After a quick lunch, some wandering downtown, pop into the grocery store for some dinner for tonight, I came home to a quick nap. Then up and made dinner of rice and peas (not as good as Cathy's, but I think I may have missed a step or ingredient...I did it from memory), coconut crusted tilapia and a salad. I wanted to dip my new coconut sauce, since I brought it all the way home from Toronto. Yum, yum!

Fading...and my head is starting to hurt. I have to go to bed, as I'm collecting Mom and we're off to meet & greet our potential new physician tomorrow morning. Wish us luck...I've heard horror stories about this!


Tuesday, October 19, 2010

Aches and pains

Things are starting to seriously seize up, but I am still moving way better than after my 1st, oh so long ago now.

After I heard everyone leave this morning (Cathy starts work at the crack of stupid and the hubs and boys leave not so much later than that), I decided I was awake and just got up. Made a pot of coffee, laid on the couch watching the world news and found out that Calgary voted for mayor the guy that was in third place last week. vote does count! Use it!! I am happy this guy won (I did vote for him, after all) and we'll see what happens with the city now that Mayor Dave is gone, and Mr. No (the front runner) lost out on both the mayor's chair and his alderman's seat (which he gave up to run for mayor).

Turns out I'm famous...okay maybe just in my mind, but I got a mention in the Calgary Herald's running blog, Calgary Runners. Kind of cool to see my name listed like that...and I wasn't last!

After laying on the couch for awhile, I decided that I needed some serious caffeine in me, so I showered, got dressed and went exploring. Mr. Garmin says the Starbuck's (yes, I can sniff them out!) is about 2km from Cathy's home, so it was a nice walk to loosen things up. My calves are really tight this morning, as are my quads, so the walk felt really good. And the sun was shining, the birds were singing and the trees were doing what trees do. After sitting in the sun for a bit sipping my 6 shots (the girl said she was going to "just throw it out" - the horror!) and the oat fudge bar. What a lovely way to spend a morning. I beat Cathy home from work by about 5 minutes, and then we headed back out to the mall (hey...this looks familiar) for a bite to eat (Jimmy the Greek for me) and then to pick up groceries for tomorrow night's supper. We returned home and make lemon loaf, another loaf of bread, goulash, pork chops for supper, as well as pulled in the laundry from outside (mmmm...smells so good!), enjoyed a cup of tea and just chatted. Very Zen...

Going to do some more stretching and make sure I head out for another walk in the morning. But nothing hurts terribly, which I am pleased with. Training really does pay off. Who would have thunk it???

The house is smelling really, really, really good now and I am getting hangry!!


Monday, October 18, 2010

Lazy Day

Lasted last night till about 10:30, and then I was ready to crash...could have had something to do with being up at 6am...could have been the half a cow I had for supper...could have been the 5+ hour run I did earlier in the day. Guess we'll never!

While I heard the house moving about this morning (it's a regular Monday for them), I drifted back to sleep and got up around 9. I didn't sleep horribly, but not great as the hips kept protesting through out the night. Made for a lot of flipping about, but we all got over it. Did some stretching when I got up this morning, to ease some of the aches out, and that seems to have helped a bit.

Managed to make it downstairs it was one step at a time to begin with, but now I can already move like a normal...okay, almost normal person. Had a cup...pot...of coffee while I watched Cathy being superwoman. Laundry, baked bread, made rice & peas, cleaned the kitchen (I helped!), ran the dishes, had lunch, got ready for work and then left. I was exhausted just watching her! I had some delicious turkey soup for lunch and then laid down for a nap. The boys are home now, and I'm in charge of dinner. Okay, so it's mainly all made, but I am reheating the rice! The jerk chicken will be bbq'd when hubs gets home, and then I'll either heat up the veggies left over from last night or make some new stuff. We won't starve. I may join the boys for their walk with the dog after supper, just to see the neighbourhood, and so I can figure out where to take the dog, if I chose to head out tomorrow on my own.

That's all I've got for you. I hope to have some more adventures to share tomorrow.


Sunday, October 17, 2010


Not the sub-5 I was aiming for, but it's still a personal best and I'll take it! Of course, Mr. Garmin disagrees with the "official" time (off by 3 minutes) but even 5:21 is still over 20 minutes faster than the marathon I ran in May.

Got up at the crack of stupid, as did Cathy and her family! Felt a little sorry for her one teenager, as this is normally his sleep-in day, but we all got over it. Drove into the city, after my usual breakfast of bagel, nutella and banana. Topped off with milk and some coffee and I was ready to roll. Got to Mel Lastman square nice and early, in time to watch the Half group head off on their race. Then we hung out inside (to keep warm) before I loaded my gear in the storage truck, and queued up to run. I'll post pictures later, as Cathy took some, while here hubs took pictures with mine. Cathy was blown away by all the "throw-away" clothes lying around. I tried to explain the concept, but since I am always hot, I didn't have anything to throw away. The temperature was forecast to be +15, so I was running in a tank and shorts today. Who knew the one thing that I would really need was OCTOBER! But more about that later...

We took off, and so my third marathon began. I tried to hold back, but as usual started a little fast, averaging a pace of anywhere from 6:36 to 7:00. I did really well, even reaching the halfway mark at another PB (clock said 2:32)...this is where I fell apart a little. I wasn't in pain, but I did have some trouble breathing in some areas and had to pull out the inhaler a couple of times. Not sure if it was the humidity or what, but that slowed me down a bit.

Then we hit Lakeshore...I will say that this marathon is actually quite beautiful, as we ran down Yonge Street and through some of the older neighbourhoods before reaching Lakeshore. That went on FOR FREAKING FOR.EVER!! With a head-wind, to boot. I think we ran Lakeshore for about 10 km and then turned around to run back. This was the only point to see other runners, but for the most part, this was a point to point race. After finally turning around at the 30km mark, I let the mental part get the better of me, as I realized I still had 12 km to go...that took some wind out of my sails. I tried not to look at a clock, or my Garmin, but I wasn't running nearly as fast as before. By this point, I was just plugging away at this point, even resorting to counting backwards from 300 to try and take my mind off the distance.

The crowds for the marathon were great, as people stood and clapped and cheered your name (on the bib) as you ran past. That helped too...and awesome volunteers and course marshalls everywhere, all checking that you were doing all right. I actually witnessed someone "hit the wall", and thought we were going to have to call medical, but he recovered rather quickly. Finally hit the 40km mark, and phone Cathy to tell her I was heading in. Also passed a clock at this point, and realized that I wasn't going to be sub-5, but still knew that I was much faster than the Calgary marathon in May. We did have a wee bit of a hill to run up into Queen's Park, which I didn't enjoy, along with the constant chorus of "you're almost there". Saw Cathy and her son, holding up their "go, Carol, go" signs and cheering me on. That pushed me across the finish line (even though Mr. Garmin had already said I was done about 200 meters previously) with a smile on my face, and spring in my step. Okay, maybe not a spring, but I was moving better than I thought.

After a quick rest and a stretch, we walked back to the car, with me moving way better than expected, and returned to the house to eat COW! Yummo!!! Cathy's hubs is a good BBQer!!! Not feeling too bad, but I am looking forward to a quiet day tomorrow! Realized that I should have worn some sunscreen though, as my back, shoulders, face and chest are all pretty pink and toasty! In October!!!! Crazy.

Now which marathon shall I tackle next?? And how do I convince Cathy and family to come with me, as they were awesome race support?


Saturday, October 16, 2010

T - 16 hours and counting!

I am in Toronto but not without incident, Let me stress that I don't enjoy flying...okay, my stomach doesn't enjoy flying!!! I didn't have any Gravol at home, but did have candied ginger (nature's stomach settler)...I lasted the whole trip, until the pilot made the final approach to the airport. Then, and this is my story and I'm sticking to it, the pilot did a loop-d-loop with the plane, and stopped it so hard, we did a tire stand in the front wheel!!! Sadly (for the people around me) I do not get a lot of warning when I'm about to blow, and blow I did!!! This is the second time my friend Cathy has greeted me, all covered with vomit. I did clean up better this time, but still...what is it about Toronto?! I already have some natural travel sickness pills in my purse (purchased this morning) for the flight home.

After I got my bag and changed, Cathy and I went down to the race Expo to pick up my race kit! This was Cathy's first expo, and she thought we would walk in, pick up a bib and leave. Oh, no, my friend! There's gu's and juices to sample, protein bars to choke down, clothes to look at, people to meet. Speaking of people...I met, shook hands with and have an autograph to prove it, Katherine Switzer...yes, the KV Switzer, who fooled the Boston Marathon boys in 1967 and broke ground for all female runners the world over. She is funny (she was joking that the woman from Boston was still alive, she heard) and looks fabulous. She and Roger Robinson were there selling their book 26.2, a book of 26.2 marathon of course I now have a copy. Also met up with John Stanton, bought a jacket and a shirt ("does this shirt make my butt look fast?"), and the package of course. But what I also learned is that I have to watch my sugar levels...I suppose I should have figured out that there 'may' be a problem when I ate at 6:30am, barfed it all up at 12:30 pm and hadn't replaced it (other than a peppermint tea) by 3:30 when we were still in the expo. One minute I was standing, the next I was sitting on the floor. Thank goodness the swag bag contained some fruit mash "drink", which I sucked back (yuck, but sugar I needed), as well as a small box of Vecture cereal. Munched on that till I started to feel better and then went to the Vegan booth to get some drink with electrolytes and some protein bar. Started to feel much more human again...sorry, Cathy...didn't mean to scare the crap out of us both!

Got to Cathy's, ordered a pizza, and met up with some of the ladies from At the Park, Caroline and Sunshine. We sat and drank beer (carbo loading!), ate some munchies and just got to know each other. Good fun.

Today Cathy and I wandered around the downtown of the community she lives in, checking out some local antique shops and such. Gorgeous day, and that just means tomorrow is going to be perfect for the marathon! Yay!! After a quick stop at home for lunch (excellent cooker, Cathy is) she, her hubs and I headed out to the country so that I can see what fall really looks like. Checked out many small towns and shops, a place they call Mars (Terra Cotta) and enjoyed a fabu afternoon. Getting dinner ready now (pasta, with a garlic tomato sauce, shrimp, bread, salad) and then a quiet night at home. Something I have learned about Cathy, despite knowing her for many, many, many (is that enough manys, Cathy??) years, is that she likes Nascar. I would have never thought that, ever!!!

I am going to get my race gear out and ready (I think I'm wearing the tank...I think!) and then aim to hit the sack nice and early. We have to be at the race starting point by 8 (it's a point-to-point race, which I've never run before...exciting) and I don't know how long it'll take to get there from here, as well as having to fight traffic. The great news is Cathy managed to get the day off, so will be there with family to cheer me across the finish line! Andher cousin is running the Half, so she'll have another to cheer across. I'm getting pumped!

T -15 hours....argh!!!!


Friday, October 15, 2010

Leavin' on a jet plane

Can't believe I'm up and blogging at 5am! The cab will be here in about 15, so this will be brief. I'm off to Toronto, where I WILL RUN AN AWESOME RACE. Say loud it and often enough, and it will happen!

Had wonderful noodles last night with H-woman, and then home to finish organizing, packing and tidying up. Got to bed just before midnight...I will be tired today, me thinks! Once I get to TO, I will go to the Expo this afternoon (mmmm, Cathy's first...this could be interesting) and I think we're going to meet the other ladies from At the Park. Who knows what tomorrow with bring. Looks like good weather too, which is awesome.

I should get going, so must sign off.


Wednesday, October 13, 2010

4 more sleeps...

Just when I think I have hit the peak in Boot Camp, Trainer Josh ups the ante and I end up looking like I just picked up a set of weights that very moment! And yet I return, class after class!

Monday's class was good but on the smaller side. Still a good turn out for a holiday Monday and we worked our butts off. Since I'm flying out Friday morning, I decided to go to last night's class as well. I may regret that decision...we did a lot of upper body work, interspersed with running and sprinting up the little hill. I know...marathon in T-5 days, but I am competitive against myself and I hate to lose to me!!! I can really feel it in my shoulders and lats today though.

I hemmed and hawed all day whether I should go today (only 4 more sleeps) as I do have a lot to do still and then I decided on yes. I planned on being really good with the legs (if the group did Douglas Fir like last night, I would run the pathway, etc) although we all know about best laid plans, right?? One of the ladies wanted to mix it up a bit, so we ran over to the other side of the park and did an oldie but a goodie. Half of us did count-down incline push-ups (10, sprint, 9, sprint, 8, sprint...etc) while the rest did good old chin-ups. Then we switched. It's been awhile, but I am still pleased (despite stiff and sore shoulders already) that I managed to crank out a total of 25 of them! Really feeling the upper back now though!!

Back to the mats, and then Josh decided we needed to Tabata the hill (fartleks, for me, I suppose). While everyone else sprinted, I power walked...okay, I did pick it up a couple of times. Remember, I hate to lose to me! After 5 or 6 sessions of that, we moved to the mats and did...wait for it...more SHOULDER WORK. OMG, it was all I could do to get my bra off when I got home!! I have serious doubts that I will be able to get dressed tomorrow morning! But I do love how this feels. I will miss the class next week.

Of course, I will still get a good workout in, as I run the Toronto Goodlife marathon on Sunday! Flat, flat, flat, flat, flat!!! I cannot wait...I am feeling really confident about this run, and I know I'm going to pull off a sub-5. Of course, I also know many things can change before race day and on race day, but my mantra is sub-5.

I leave first thing Friday morning...only for a marathon would I be so retarded to book a 7am flight!!! But the taxi is booked (for 5:15...sob!), and I'm just finishing up some laundry, so my running gear is all nice and clean. I have to sort out carry on (RUNNING GEAR!) and what else to take. The weather looks to be nice, so hopefully I luck out and get some decent fall foliage photos. Being a Western Canadian, we don't get the brilliant reds of the maples, as our winters are too harsh on the poor trees. We get yellow and some red on bushes, but it's mostly green due to all the pine trees. So I hope to see the contrast out there.

Okay...I really must get a few things done, so later everyone. I will try to post - I'm staying with fellow blogger and old high-school buddy Cathy, so I hope to be able to wrestle the computer away from her teenage sons long enough to post results!


Monday, October 11, 2010

Holiday Monday

Wow...where did the day go?

I was so exhausted last night, despite a couple of accidental naps on the couch, that I got up and went to bed at 9pm. Yes, me...NINE pm. And I slept, pretty much like the dead, till at least 6 this morning. I must have needed it. Finally crawled out at 8, after some morning snuggles with the fur-children. They weren't even bugging me that much for breakfast, so they must have needed the sleep as well!

Dinner was catered yesterday, by Sunterra Market. I picked up one ham and one turkey, so we could have a sampling of each, and came with roasted veggies, garlic mashed potatoes, the whitest gravy I have ever seen (it was tasty) and pumpkin pie for dessert. Took it all down to Mom's, although I did end up bringing most of it home!! A lump of potatoes, a couple of vegs, a piece of turkey, a piece of ham, and shared one piece of pie. I'm sure she's still full now!!! I came home and laid on my couch wondering what else I could eat!!! I think that's also why I went to bed!

After a couple of cups of coffee for breakfast, I fried up a piece of the ham, added an egg and some Swiss cheese and made myself a breakfast sandwich on a Dempster's Thin Bun. Yum. I've been feeling munchy all day though, so I just ate the leftovers for lunch (some potatoes, vegetables, to which I added tomatoes, broccolini and Brussels sprouts, turkey and gravy - I ate the other piece of pie last night!).

Did a whole bunch of dishes (I really need to invest in a new dishwasher!), and caught up on blogs and such. Still can't decide what to do with the rest of my day, but I'm sure I'll find something. Got to start figuring out what to take to Toronto (6 sleeps!) and get that all organized. Add only three days of work to get everything done that I want, and suddenly I'm feeling the pressure.

That's all I've got today. Looks like a nice day (after waking up to rain), and boot camp should be a good one. I can finally move my legs after Friday's workout, so it's time to punish them again!!


Sunday, October 10, 2010


Woke up at a relatively decent time of 7:45, to an almost orange sunrise. Not sure what's going on with the clouds and such, but it looked like a gorgeous day and one fit for a run.

Today I was running the Alzheimer's 10km, for my uncle, but mostly for my Mom. Uncle H. did indeed pass away with Alzheimer's (had a heart attack, but didn't think to tell anyone he didn't feel good...sad) but we now see Mom teetering on the edge and ready to go over. Case in point: phone call last night at 8:30:
Mom: "Weren't you coming over and bringing supper?"
Me: "Yes, tomorrow for Thanksgiving."
Mom: "Oh, I thought that was today."
Me: "No, I told you I was coming over on Sunday."
Mom: "Well, what day is it?"
Me: "Saturday."
Mom: ", you'll be here tomorrow then - I should write that down."
I run for Mom!!

It was a perfect fall day for a run.
Just before the horn went off at 10am (I heart civilized start times!), I ditched the jacket as it was so sunny and warm by then. I wasn't sure how I was going to approach this run today, as my running mate was running her first 10km, ever. In fact, her first race, ever!! Garrath also suggested that I don't treat this like a race with Toronto only a week out...or do, and see how the legs feel. No mixed messages there!!
We took off, and started with a reasonable 7:04 pace, but I did lose S. at about the 1.5km mark, as she stopped to catch her breath. I decided to treat this like any other race and since the legs felt good, I continued on, intending on only walking at the water stations. Came across the first station just past 2km, but since I wasn't thirsty, I ran on by. There was as much bobbing and weaving this week as there was last week, as they figure at least 1,200 showed up to walk or run. But we were on the running path, not a road, so everyone was rather squished together. Add the normal Sunday runners, walkers and bikers, and it made for some evasive running at some points.
Hit the halfway mark at roughly what I did last week, turned and headed for home. I did walk at one point to slow down the heart a bit, and once recovered (after 30 seconds) I took off again. I don't know if it's all the training but running just feels right this time around. I'm not struggling to breathe, I'm not in pain, I'm not limping! It's all good.
After catching up to the 5km walkers (who really don't know the rules of the road, as they walked in large packs, taking up the whole pathway!), I pushed my way through and turned on the guns for the last km, crossing the finish line in 1:07:00! That is a good 5 minutes off my previous PB. Yay!
Waited for S. to cross (1:19 - not so shabby for a first race ever) and then had a bite to eat (pizza was the post-race grub...hmmmm...) and, thanks to S.'s mom (my coworker), a protein shake from Jugo. Showed S. some stretches, ran into some running club members, had a chat, wandered around and came home for a wee nap on the couch.
Just getting ready to pack everything up to head down to Mom's.
Hope everyone enjoys their Thanksgiving or Columbus Day weekends. And shout out to all the marathoners out there...Amber, who rocked her first ever, as well as my peeps from my 5-hour training group who all crossed the line, hopefully upright and smiling!

Saturday, October 9, 2010

Saturday strollings

Where did the rest of the week go? Last post was Wednesday! Thursday was spent at work - nothing too major there, except everyone seems to really like Floyd, our new killer, attack fish for our pod. Sadly, Buddy went to go live on a farm over the weekend (that's the story Floyd is getting!) and I brought Floyd in on Monday, with some fish-friendly greens (read - plastic) to swim around in. He appears very happy.

I was planning on heading to boot camp after work, but somehow my couch grabbed my butt and I woke up 10 minutes before the class starts! The 6pm class just does not work for me...I have to get home, get changed and go. Do not stop, do not sit, do not rest. Oh well, I'll be going on Friday for sure.

And what a gorgeous day it turned out to be on Friday. Sadly, us Calgarians had to wait till October for summer to arrive, but arrive it has, with temps in the low 20's and the sun shining. We had a 50/50 draw for our food drive at work, and I ended up winning the $143 pot. Which I then used to buy a $125 food hamper (which will feed a family of 3 for a week) and bought a lottery ticket with another $6. Figured I didn't have it to begin with, so why would I miss it if I spent it.

I did make it to Friday's boot camp, which we decided to take advantage of the nice weather and "run" the big-assed hill and do some stairs. Not sure if I've described these stairs, but they are not neat, even, 1' steps leading up a hill...they are 3' "squares" hacked into the side of a hill, and they are a bitch!!! But up the hill we went, over the top, across the ridge to the base of the stairs. Which we then ran up and down 4 times. Back across the ridge to the top of the BA hill, down it to the halfway mark, and then turn and sprint to the top! Insert vomiting here!!!! Back down to the mats, which we picked up and moved with all our gear to the nearby picnic tables...sadly, it was not to have a picnic! Upper body work, step-ups, more curls, presses and push-ups and then we played "follow the leader"...wanna guess who the leader was?! Carrying our weights, we ran for 30-seconds, then stopped and did some workout for another 30. That went on for 5 minutes, and although Trainer Josh thinks he's clever, we all figured out that we were actually making our way to the bitch-path (gravel pathway up a rather steep little hill). And we were right! After sprinting it a couple of times, with jumping jacks added for fun, we went back to our mats and did some core work. Finished with some stretching, me plugging the food drive (and getting some others to take some bags to fill and return!), I came home and collapsed on my couch! I don't know how I managed to move at all last night!

Dinner was a simple fritatta, which was so good I ate it before I thought to take a picture. I sauteed onions, celery, zucchini, grape tomatoes and some Asparation (baby broccoli/asparagus cross?), then tossed in some fresh salmon. Mixed eggs, milk and Epicure Lemon Dill dip mix, added that to the pan, topped with some lovely grated Swiss cheese and baked till done. Dee-vine!

Woke up today without an alarm (glory), and after some cranberry wheat cookies, I finally hauled my butt over to Starbucks for a cup of energy (5-shot latte). I then plotted my day. I had to pick up my race package for tomorrow's Alzheimer 10k, vote (because I will be in Toronto on election day) and pick up the Thanksgiving feast for tomorrow from Sunterra. Changing into my yoga pants and a running tank, I strapped on Mr. Garmin and off we went.

It's absolutely gorgeous out there! I should have taken a camera. Walked to Eau Claire, where I discovered that I am a heartless, cynical city girl. I may have bought the sob story dude was trying to sell me, if it didn't keep getting more and more off point. He asked how well I knew the train system (not really) - well, he took the train from the northwest and then got off where it turns east, but it turns out that he left his package on the train, and (insert soft sobbing here) that Calgary Transit needs 5 days to look for stuff in the lost and found (seriously?!)...but that's not the problem...he has to get to the Greyhound station, where his mother has left him a bus ticket...but it'll take Greyhound and hour to two to process it (what has that got to do with the package???), BUT there's more...he has to catch that bus to get to Lethbridge to catch a plane to Grande Prairie (why don't you just take the bus to Grande Prairie?!?! and what has that got to do with the freaking lost package?!?!) and since his sick, elderly mother languishes away in Raymond, she can't make it to Western Union to send him the $17.70 he needs to make all this happen. we have the point of this sad tale of woe...oh, and he's outright crying now. I made him cry harder when I said I don't carry cash and walked away. I know...heartless. I still prefer wise.

Picked up the race package, which have the ugliest shirts (yellow...I do not wear yellow...ever...) but a nice little pack to carry stuff in. Resisted the urge to spend money in the Running Room, as I'll be getting a $75 gift card for my fund-raising efforts. Now I don't do this for the cards, but for my Mom...just so you all know. Walked from Eau Claire to City Hall to vote. My timing is not great though, as I managed to get there at the same time as every Sudanese citizen in Calgary did, who also came down to exercise their right to vote. Seriously...they had to have taken a bus to get there, as there was at least a hundred of them! I do hope they know they were voting for mayor and city council though, as they were all sporting t-shirts about voting for an Independent Southern Sudan. I don't see how Calgary's mayor and alderman choice is going to help with that! But voted and continued on my way to Sunterra.

Dinner looks awesome. Cream of wild mushroom soup, salad with strawberries and walnuts, roast turkey, ham, mashed potatoes, gravy, roasted vegetables, stuffing and fruit compote, and finally, deep-dish pumpkin pie with ginger cream. Sunterra appears to be a good cooker!!! We will know more tomorrow. Loaded up, I headed for home, but somehow found myself inside the main Bernard Callebaut chocolate shop, where I bought myself a box of pure heaven. I have loved this man and his chocolate for years, ever since he first set up shop in Calgary with a family recipe for Belgian chocolate. He is going through some financial trouble, so I thought I should have a box in my fridge...just in case. At least that's my excuse!! In the meantime, I'll try to ignore it's existence, stretch out my now sore quads and figure out what to have for supper.

While I was up this week at weigh-in, based on the scale this morning, I've already lost that. Focus is on the run tomorrow, boot camp on Monday and Wednesday, and eating healthy, getting loads of sleep and hydrating in time for next Sunday's marathon. Only 8 more sleeps!!!!



Wednesday, October 6, 2010

Last clinic run...

Boo...sad...but it means that we are all ready for our various races. Of course, it also means no more clinics with uber-runner Garrath leading the helm. I am of mixed emotions...I am pumped and ready for Toronto (11 sleeps) but feeling very blue about losing an instructor that has helped me shave, at the very least based on current training levels, over an hour and a half off my race time! Very sad indeed...he was helping me get to Boston! Which I will still do, of course.

After speed work (4 laps of 1km, average pace of 6:45 - just could not slow down!) I did stop at the pub for a pint (or two) with the peeps. It was a small clinic tonight as many are travelling already to their various races.

So, to everyone running this weekend: Good luck, run hard and finish strong in:
Portland, OR
Chicago, IL
Kelowna, BC
Victoria, BC
Athens, Greece (2,500 anniversary of the original run!)

In the meantime, in an effort to make sure I get enough sleep and rest between now and the 17th, I am shutting down and going to bed.


Monday, October 4, 2010

Return to Boot Camp

I can not believe it was been two weeks since I was last at boot camp!! I went the Monday before Melissa's but missed the Friday class (out of town) and then the Monday class (Wicked launch) and then Friday again (too tired to boot!). So I sort of dreaded tonight, thinking...'oh, this is going to hurt!'. I was right!!!
A quick run to warm up, we then started tabata from hell...while one part of the group did bicycles/suicide drills, we did push-up tabatas (20 seconds on, 10 seconds off). This went on for 2.5 minutes. Then we switched places. Back to the tabatas, we switched to shoulder press, while the other group did drop-leg flies/suicides. Two and half minutes of hell...switch. Lastly we did biceps curls tabata, while the group did jumping jacks, lunge walks, high knees, butt kicks and hops. Switch. Ow!! After a brief water break, we went back to the lunge walks but added lats for fun! Then we did some 10:10:10's (biceps, rows and shoulder presses). More lunge/lats, more 10:10:10 and finally lunge/lats and 10:10:10's. One would think this torture was over, but one would be wrong!! Off to the picnic tables where we did 3 sets of leg drives, dips and narrow-grip incline presses. Once that was done, it was sprints up and down the Bitch Hill. In my absence, the group named this special little spot of paradise, which is a rather steep little twisty hill, in which we run to the top, turn around and repeat. Just for kicks, Trainer Josh threw in squats at the bottom of each lap! Finally we limped our way back to the mats where we decided to focus on core. Because we hadn't worked out enough by this point!!! After some full sit-ups, cheek-to-cheeks, side-plank and oblique crunches. Finished with good old negatives and toe touches before we could all finally go home. That is if we could manage to crawl to our cars, that is!!!
Once home, I decided to stick around the Mediterranean and have a bit of an Anti-pasta platter for supper.
Artichoke hearts, roasted red peppers, fresh grape tomatoes, Kalamata olives, giant Queen green olives (they were the same size as the tomatoes!) and feta cheese, drizzled with evoo.
Finally, some of the Sabra Artichoke Spinach hummus with whole wheat pita to dip. I now know why most in blog-land refer to this stuff as crack! It is sooooo good.
Happy belly, a little Criminal Minds and now I am ready for bed. I can already feel things tightening, I love boot camp!
By the way, be sure to check out Amber's blog about book Born to Run. It is an interesting take on barefoot vs. running shoes. I don't know how I feel about the whole thing, as I've always suffered from very flat feet, but what ever works for you.
As well, check out Caitlin's post about an article written in Marie Claire. Since it is essentially about food/health blogs, I find it very slanted and somewhat insulting. Not Caitlin's post, but the actual article. Basically what the article said to me is that these types of blogs are dangerous because I, as the reader, am too stupid or gullible to read it, take what I would from it and still manage to go on about my day to day activities without falling victim to an eating or exercise disorder. My word...just from reading a blog. Oh, the power these young women have over the rest of us! When I was in journalism school, I was taught to be unbiased and neutral, but that's obviously not how the Marie Claire reporter was taught. So, I'm just saying if you think that my boot camp or marathon training is crazy, or makes you want to work out even harder, please remember that you are a human being responsible for your own actions!! Just because I'm a wackadoodle doesn't mean the rest of you (okay, all 9) have to be as well!!

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Run for the Cure

I got up bright and early this morning to join 8,000 other runners and walkers to Run for the Cure. Normally I avoid this race like the plague. I have nothing against the cause, and support it whole-hearted. What I have against it is the utter chaotic manner in which it is run. It is far too emotional (as it would want to be) and not run like a run. The fact that they encourage walk-up registration before the run, donations (meaning cash and such) handed in this very morning (um, security risk much??) and the route is not normally clearly marked, so you have walkers only doing 1k with the runners trying to do 5k and getting routes mixed up. There's dogs, strollers, kids...gah! I used to get a team together for years, but started backing off years ago. Only for my last clinic pacer K., who is a survivor and running a team this year, will I plop on a pink wig (oh, and I NEVER wear pink!) and enter the fray.
Met up with some of the other team-mates at 7:30(ish) this morning...the race wasn't till 9, but 8,000 people (and dogs, kids, spouses, friends & family) all descending on one shopping mall means limited parking! I'm sure by 9, there were still people trying to get onto the parking lot to park their cars!! I bedazzled with a couple of cure tattoos on my calves. didn't quite work out. I also had my Cure bandanna from years ago, with some pretty fancy pink extensions hanging out from underneath. I left my camera at home, but hope to get some pics from the other runners...I think I looked a little like a girly Hulk Hogan, without the 'stash, of course!!
Once we were all ready to go, K. and her fellow survivors (she ran the latest Running Room Survivor clinic out of Eau Claire) all in pink, tiaras and wings, lined up with the rest of us, ready to prove themselves. One was walking the 1K, which had a different start and route this year (hey, maybe people have been listening), while K. and the other were sticking to a pretty strict 10:1 pace. I find it hard, after tempo and steady runs, to run anything less than a 10k taking walk breaks, so I gave my hugs, shouts of support and took off. Took at least 5 minutes just to get to the "start line"...this was not a timed event, so I was relying on Mr. Garmin to set me right. They even tried to get people organized for the 5km (fast runners, slow runners, walkers) but no one pays attention to the signs, so the first km was spent doing some serious bobbing and weaving to get around the throngs of people. And dogs...I love dogs. Really I do...I just don't think they belong in the middle of 8,000 people all shouting and screaming and clapping and banging things, running and walking. I am constantly surprised every year that there isn't some horror story about a poor dog that accidentally got in someones way. Once the crowd thinned a bit, I settled into a good was still a little hard to run, as we go through an older neighbourhood with big trees...this means leaves on the road, which can be slippery under foot. But I held my pace and my stride, and came around the corner with only a few hundred meters left thinking "it's over already?!". According to Mr. Garmin, I ran 5km in 32:40:54, at a pace of 6:32/km, burning 481 calories in the process.
Wandered around waiting for the rest (K. and her group finished at 39 minutes), had a can of green tea stuff, and passed on most of the food. Green bananas, bagels - just bagels, popcorn (Smart Pop, which is so bad for you!) and snack bars. Nothing really healthy. We all wandered around a bit, waited for the survivors to get their free foot rub and mini-pedi, picked up a few things before deciding we were all hungry. Went around the mall to Chili's for lunch, which was dead considering all the people there today. Decided on the sliders platter, which may not have been my best choice. They were good, but were served with deep-fried onions...that was seriously the only vegetable on the plate!! And greasy ones at that.
Stopped by Mom's to visit (and check up on her) before heading to Sunterra for some fresh veggies and milk. I also grabbed some marinade for the chicken I bought yesterday, as I couldn't decide where in the world I should eat tonight. Settled on Italy! Okay, so really Mediterranean area, as I ended up making Tuscany marinated chicken, Greek lemon roasted potatoes, basil tomatoes and roasted Brussels sprouts.

Now I sit with full belly, feeling very satisfied. I bagged up the rest of the chicken, and separated the salmon, saving a piece for supper tomorrow night.
Just had to show you all my goofy girl, Miss Coco's a good thing she's purdy! We don't like to tell her that she has a weight condition...she's actually lost weight but she's still my little cookie jar!

Now this is the face of a content kitty!

Have a great week.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

Week in review

With the Mountain Retreats taking up my week, I thought I'd just do a quick recap of the reality I returned to.

Work was busy, but no more than usual, especially for the end of the month.

Had a great run on Tuesday, although it turned into a bit of a race! We were supposed to do a race pace tempo run, but K. in my group was feeling fast and I spent the rest of the 5km trying to keep up with her! Our race pace is 7:07, yet we finished with an average of 6:44!!! Kept it a bit more in control on Wednesday, averaging 7:04 over our 8km. Went for a beer afterwards and continued to bask in my Melissa's glory! I am feeling really, really good about Toronto!
Found what I lost the previous week at weigh-in, but that's life, right? I seem to be enjoying the roller-coaster ride of late, and just have to ride it out until it's over. And just realized that I quietly celebrated 12 years of being a Weight Watcher's member. Now, don't freak out about the time...I'm a stubborn, slow learner and I know the plan works when you work the plan. When you're floopy about it...well, it's a roller-coaster ride!
I was dead tired yesterday, but I don't know why. What I do know is that I didn't want to risk hurting myself doing something stupid, so I skipped boot camp, came home and had a nap. And another glorious Saturday afternoon one today. Man, I miss those!!! I really have to concentrate on my sleep these next few weeks, and aim for at least 7 hours a night. I don't want to get sick, so am also upping the Emergen-C and glutamine intake.
I did head to Costco this morning for contacts, and somehow came home with over $200 worth of stuff!!! I did buy some stuff for the food drive and also stocked up on chicken, salmon, tilapia and other stuff...and just realized I forgot to look for Almond Breeze, which someone else said they found there! trip. One thing I did get was Sabra Hummus, an artichoke spinach blend. It became part of supper, when I toasted a Dempsters multigrain thin-bun, schmeared with the hummus, some sliced artichokes and a fried piece of tilapia. Side of grape tomatoes, and dinner was quick, easy and delicious.
I've got to get ready for the Run for the Cure in the morning. Little 5k jaunt. It's a cause I love, but a race I hate. It's chaos...14,000+ walkers, runners, dogs, kids, one seems to know where they're going or what they're doing! I haven't run it for years, but my old pacer is a survivor and wanted me on her team. So, for her I will endure. Meeting up at 7:30 to get my shirt, so I should start getting ready for bed. Early morning tomorrow.

Mountain Retreat, day 5

What to do on my last day in town? Besides cleaning up the condo and loading up the car, that is! Got that all done before noon, so decided to head up to Grassi Lakes area to visit my ex. Some may recall that he passed away suddenly, at the very too young age of 46, last summer. His mother had let me know that this is where he rests now, and I finally took the time to go see him.

Because I was alone and had to get back to Calgary by 5, I didn't do the whole hike (about 2 hours), instead opting to walk to the base of the falls. I'll come back another nice day and do the hike with someone next time (too many critters in the forest to walk it alone).

It's very easy to feel God, or whatever/whomever you believe in, around here. It was peaceful and serene.

Came across this little guy along the walk. He (she??) was kind enough to pose for me. Of course, I stood very, very, very still, as to not disturb. Good thing Canada is not known for it's poisoness creatures! And a visit to Australia years ago cured me of my fear of spiders. When they're big enough to wave back, you know you have to get along somehow!! Despite the photo, this guy is only about the size of my pinky nail.

Then I spied the Inukshuk colony here, and thought this would be a great spot to sit and visit.
I asked D. to watch out for Dad, as well as my family doctor, Dr. C. He passed 3 days before Dad, I guess to help him along the way. Anyway, I introduced them all (D's father is also up here, having lost his battle with lung cancer years ago), told them to enjoy the mountains and go fishing or hiking or what-have-who, and then had a good old cry. Next time I must remember tissue or a hanky...shirt was a little damp by the time I was done. After my cry and quiet time, I had to leave my mark. It's not the best Inukshuk, but it's my first.

Decided on the drive out that I wanted to explore just a little more so went south (and up) to Spray Lakes. Our family used to camp and fish up there all the time, and nice to see that after all these years, they still haven't really improved the road!!! It was a very bumpy, very loose gravel, slow drive up, hitting a top speed of 20 at one point. But if it were a fast highway, we all would have missed these guys, enjoying a salt lick.

Only went to the base of Spray Lakes park, as I was under time restraints and I wanted to whip back into town to pick up an item I saw yesterday and decided to go back and get. Played a lot with the camera, which I decided to buy from my coworker. I know it's about 4 years old, but since they're worth roughly $500 nowadays, I still think I got a wicked deal. And it's fun!

Sadly, it was time for me to pack everything up and head for home. Not before one last shot though. With Canmore in the distance, I made the vow out loud.

One day, I WILL live here. Yes, I will!

Stopped into town to pick up what will essentially be an urn for Dad (for me). Okay, so it's a handmade cream and sugar set, but the sugar bowl is perfect. Still not sure what to do with the creamer, but it'll make a nice gravy boat, I think. Not that I ever have that much gravy! But I really wanted the bowl, and it's a set. Can't break up a set.

Got back into Calgary, reluctantly dropped off the keys, dropped in on Mom, picked up my latest Epicure order that was delivered, got home, unloaded the car, changed and rushed down to Vertigo Theatre for a launch party.

And just what was being launched, you ask??

WICKED is coming to Calgary and I am PUMPED!!! We already ordered 150 seats for the show NEXT July, that's how excited we (reps from my Social Club were there as well) are for the show coming. It's going to be absolutely phenomenal.
After a gross glass of wine (I was far too used to my Meritage) I went home and found some food to eat, before unpacking, cuddling with the furbabies and going to bed. I had to return to the "real" world of work in the morning. le sigh...