Wednesday, March 31, 2010

Big Announcement revealed…

That’s right folks..Joshley (and the Charles) are Utah bound (Hill AFB to be exact)! No we aren’t just visiting, we are moving there..or more like the Air Force is moving us there! Yeah I was a little shocked at first. I will be the first one to admit that I didn’t have the best first reaction when the Hubs called to tell me then news. I did feel really bad afterwards, I mean he did just call me from another country all excited (he loves to ski.. need I say more), and well the thought of Utah just didn’t sound very appealing to me and I had a hard time hiding that fact. I know when you live the military lifestyle you shouldn’t get you hopes up on any certain location, but sometimes that is hard not to and Utah just wasn’t on the getting-my-hopes-up-for list! However, it is closer to Cali and for that I was excited!

But folks, you know what..this is where I had to put on my “Good military wife” hat, take a deep breath and find out the good parts about moving there! Like, for one the hubs is going into a job that will look very good on his resume..yay hubs (and don’t ask me what it is b/c i don’t really know). I also did a little internet research and found that there are several malls, including Nordy’s, Panda express, corner bakery and several other can’t live without spots! That is when I really started to embrace this move. Surprisingly I am really going to miss New Jersey and the east coast. I am a little sad that we didn’t take more advantage of it but we will be back there for 2 months before we move so I am planning some fun trips around the area. The hardest thing I am realizing is having to leave friends. It’s one thing when you move away from home because you know that you will be back to visit or at least still have ties to your hometown friends, but this is different. It took me a while to make friends out in NJ but now I can’t imagine my life without them (one in particular) and I am very sad to leave them!  I know we will keep in touch and I am excited to see if and when our paths cross again! Mal you are the best friend ever and I am totally going to miss you..but we still have 2 months so going to live in denial for the time being!

I will admit that I am a slow learner, but there are several lessons that I have learned during this last assignment. I have learned the importance of getting involved right away. In NJ I spent a lot of time by myself, lonely and wishing I had more friends. Then I discovered living on base, base bible studies and spouses groups and my whole outlook on the military life changed. I now felt like I had a place and could make this my home. I wish I wouldn’t have taken so long to figure it all out but I wouldn’t change any of the process! I am looking forward to the new people and opportunities that are awaiting us in Utah.

I have also learned never to judge a state by preconceived ideas. Growing up in Cali, I hadn’t really ventured to many other states and really didn’t have a desire to..yes I was a California snob! However, being able to visit or live or drive through all these different states has really shown me that each place is a new adventure to explore and usually I will find many wonderful jems that will make me want to return. It might take me a while to really discover what a place has to offer but I am learning to take that time and enjoy!

There is still a lot to be done before the move. There is the drive back to east coast for me and the charles, the hubs return from the deployment, hopefully my first marathon (more on that to come), the second try on the fertility treatments (hopefully we will be a bigger family when we cross the boarder to Utah), and the close of our time in NJ. I am excited, scared, nervous, but most of all content with whatever this brings us.

So does anyone have and advice, tips, whatever for us as we start our new adventure in Utah?? We will be in Ogden which is right outside Salt Lake City. Anyone live there now? I am hoping i’ll get lucky and meet some wonderful bloggers from the area! Well that’s the big news for us right now! Have a great wednesday :)

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Wine County 1/2 Marathon recap – part dos

*For those of you that care and because i forgot to but it on here before (and i earned these bragging rights!), I placed 9th in my age group and 105 overall (I think there was about 530 total).

*I want to apologize for waiting so long to write the second part..things have been really crazy here! We had my Grams funeral yesterday and I spoke at it and plans for leaving Cali and when the hubs returns have been stressing me out (yay for always changing plans)! Thank you all for you patience now lets get onto the hardcore running stuff!

Sunday morning we woke all bright-eyed and bushy-tailed ready to go run the race! We got of our racing gear on (including our new arm warmers and spy belt from yesterday’s shopping adventure)! Then we packed up all of our crap and headed out the door. Since it was literally the crack of dawn we decided to drive through a little coffee dive so the ladies could get their caffeine fix. Since I don’t normally drink coffee before I run I decided not to chance it and stuck with my zipfizz :)

After getting the necessary caffeine we headed onto our destination! During this time of the season in central Cali the weather is always iffy but both Olive Oyl and I had checked the weather report numerous times for the race day in order to be fully prepared for what was going to be awaiting us. It had promised to be rather warm getting into the 70’s so we were all prepared to run with minimal clothes (or mainly not a lot of layers). We had stayed in Atascadero the night before which is closer to the ocean and therefore colder than Paso. So when we stepped outside that morning and were greeted by very cold temps i was a little worried (but not freaking out yet).

Once we arrived in Paso, right on our 7am scheduled arrival time, we proceeded to go through our final routines and get together the last of what we would need from the car for the race. About a month before this race I started experiencing pain in my right ankle and even after getting new shoes it was still not gone. I then decided that I probably needed some extra support so I bought a wrap-around ankle brace that I have been wearing ever since and has helped so much! About 2 weeks before the race, while running 18 miles, my other ankle started hurting so more out of precaution I got another brace for that ankle too. So right when we got there I was debating whether I really needed to wear one or both of the braces..finally Olive Oyl made the decision for me when she said it was better to be safe the sorry..thanks girl I owe you!

paso5 paso6

And yeah, totally not warmer in Paso! I was freezing! I knew that I would warm up once we started running but for the time before that I was miserable! We had these swanky t-shirts supporting the Bako coroners office (whoo hoo) that provided some warmth.


Olive Oyl and I did a warm up run and then we went to go find that real bathrooms (no porta-potties for me). Some of Olive Oyl’s family came so we talked to them and handed off our extra clothes for them to hold so we could go line up. Somehow I ended up by myself in the crowd of 1/2 marathoners right before it started, but I was towards the front so I didn’t have to weave my way through too many people! Before the race started I was really nervous, I really wanted to PR but I also knew my last 1/2 was more ideal conditions and since i wasn’t feeling on the top of my game (I blame it on the added stress of death) I had no idea how this was going to play out!

Olive Oyl was running injured and I knew we wouldn’t be running together so I was on my own. Did I already mention that I didn’t look at the race route before hand, yeah not a racing strategy I would recommend! Right out of the gate we head into the vineyards and up a pretty intense hill complete with dirt and gravel, even worse though was the downhill on uneven terrain…almost ate it, not good for the start of the race! I had learned a while ago that I don’t like running with water so I was completely at the mercy of the aid stations. One we got past the vineyards we were running on open road, however, I truly would have taken the dirt and gravel over the unstable road conditions (way to uneven and bumpy)! By mile 3 my legs were already feeling it and I knew this was not good. My trainer had told me to walk the aid stations and though I lost some seconds doing that, I do believe it helped!

I took my first Gu at mile 4.5 and boy did I need it! The hills kept coming and by mile 6 I could see my pace starting to wane. I was trying to keep above an 8 min average but it was getting tougher and tougher. About mile 7 I came to the conclusion that I wasn’t going to PR and that I really didn’t care about my pace as long as I finished. However, my stubbornness got in the way and although I wasn’t going fast enough to PR I still pushed myself to maintain an 8-8:15 avg. I took my second Gu at mile 9.5 and that seemed to help some. My legs were screaming at me and my ankle was really protesting at this point..and yeah there was still 3.6 miles to go. There was a girl who ran around me for the whole second 1/2 and we kept passing each other..which kept me motivated (yes i am competitive even in extreme pain)! I kept praying for flat ground but once it was in sight it wouldn’t last long! “Here comes another hill..oh but there are cute horses so now I am smiling” :) The scenery was nice but I had a hard time taking it in since I really just wanted to finish!

Usually I love long run and races but for some reason I just couldn’t get my head or body into this one! Around mile 12 I was praising God that there was only one mile left. I kept remembering that Olive Oyl had said there was a pretty decent hill at the end but I kept thinking she must be mistaken, we have already had too many hills to count! Boy was I wrong!! I rounded the corner to my final mile to be met with a sinking feeling in my tummy and the steepest hill I have ever ran up before! I wanted to quit right then and there..I wanted to cry or throw up but I just kept running. I had passed the girl at the last aide station and I wanted to stay ahead of her. I mustered up all the strength I had and stared the climb. About half way up the hill I realized that I could walk faster than i was running so I power walked up the rest and then started to run again..thank God for the last aide station!

Finally I could see the balloons and the end and although I felt like I was running forever I knew it was almost done! I was almost there and I saw my girls cheering me on..thanks guys! I also saw that the clock showed 1:47:50 and so I ran as fast as I could to stay under 1:48! I finished exhausted! I then proceeded to pick up my finishers wine glass and have my chip cut off! Yeah no medal..not cool!!!

Official time: 1:47:53

Garmin (Fionia) time: 1:46:36

After I was finished and re-grouped I met up with Olive Oyl’s mom and one of the other runners with us and we headed out to find Olive Oyl. Oh by the way the ladies with us who did the 5k did amazing and I am so proud of them!! It was good to stretch my aching legs and cheer on the runners, especially as we were walking down the dreaded hill! We found Olive Oyl about a mile out and then I ran the rest of the way back with her. I can’t be more proud of her. Yes, she was hurting and exhausted but she kept trudging alone with a smile! It was such a privilege to get to run with my friend and cheer her on. She did so amazing and finished under her goal time with a 2:27 time. Come to find out later that she was running on a fractured pelvis..ahhhh! Olive Oyl you are totally my hero :)


We had a great brunch together and then all headed back to bako. We had a great time! I was in a lot of pain though, more so than i have ever been from a race. Those hills really took it out of me and I have been having an awful time recovering! Apparently you can’t run off pain and pulled muscles! Oh well I had a blast with the girls and would do it again in a heart beat. Bring on the next race!!

P.S. stay tuned for a very important announcement coming soon…

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

Wine County 1/2 Marathon Recap- Part 1

*okay so i started writing this and then realized how long it was turning out to be so i made an executive decision and decided to give it to you in two parts so as not to make your eye’s crossed!

So Sunday marked my 3rd 1/2 marathon this year! When I found out that the Hubs was going to be deployed and I was going to be staying with my folks in CA I decided that one of the ways to make the time go by faster was to sign up for a couple of races.

I searched the world wide web to see what was going to be going on during the time I would be there and what locations would be the easy to make. The fist race i signed up for was the Bako 1/2 (go here to see the review). I also found another race that was rated one of the best by Runner’s World and since it was close and during the right time I decided that would be another one to add to the agenda. What race was this??? Well none other than the Wine County 1/2 Marathon in Paso Robles, CA! Here is the description:

“The Wine Country Runs Half Marathon is set in the heart of California's scenic Central Coast, an area famous for wineries, natural hot springs, pristine beaches, Hearst Castle and much more. Starting and ending at the beautiful River Oaks Hot Springs this mostly paved course takes you over rolling hills, through picturesque vineyards and down along the Salinas River.
After the race take in breathtaking views as you enjoy a complimentary breakfast bar, live music, raffles and the post-race award ceremony. Accompanying events include a 5K Race and a Kids' Half Mile Grape Stomp. All runners receive an official race T-shirt, and both male and female first place winners of the half marathon run win their weight in wine.”

Sounds great right? I was also stoked (yes i am truly back in cali) to learn that the most amazing girl and best friend ever, who had just taken up the addictive sport of running, was looking at doing the 5K. Well, after I talked her into do the 1/2 with me I was beyond excited! It turned out to be a girls weekend for the books!

So since i know you are all on the edge of your seats….here’s a little recap of what when down this last weekend:

Although I knew that me, olive oyl, her mom, and her mom’s friends were all doing the race the plans came together and were finalized in an hilarious (and I mean that in the nicest of ways) and extremely detailed email that was sent to us all by none other than Olive Oyl herself a few days before the race weekend. Due to the wonderful planning that this email ensued, we all met up at Olive Oyl’s without a hitch! The race was Sunday but we headed out late Saturday morning so that we could get to Paso, pick up or packets, get some food and check into the hotel for an early night in order to be well rested for race day (like that ever really happens)!

After getting a little turned around, almost mistakenly registering for an youth golf tournament, a close encounter with failed bladder control (don’t worry we made it to the bathroom in time), and trying to navigate the very strange street names, we made it to our packet pick-up destination! Since this was a pretty low-key race there wasn’t an expo to make us lust for all the running necessities goodies out there so of course after we were fully registered we had to hit up the local running store! And yes I couldn’t leave there without scoring some good gems. Both Olive Oyl and I got a spy belt (since my short i was running in didn’t have pockets) and some totally rad arm-warmers for only $8..score!

By the time we were done there, everyone in our little posse was totally starved so we headed out to find the perfect carb-load dive to get our pre-race grub on. We ate some fabulous pasta and headed to the sketch motel wonderful hotel I had managed to reserve for us. Olive Oyl and I shared a room so for the remainder of the evening we had a blast getting together our gear for the next day, taking race strategies, and watching the foodnetwork. It was so much fun to get to hang out with her and have some good girl time, since we don’t get to see each other that often. Oh and by the way the whole group of ladies was hilarious and kept me laughter and gasping in horror the whole weekend! All of us were very nervous so in an effort to distract us from what the next day held, we decided to have the most random and semi awkward convos, which left us all in stitches!

That night we fell into a fitful sleep on on boards beds, although Olive Oly claims she loves sleeping on boards, and tried to get as much rest as we could before our 5:45 wake up call.

Stay tuned to find out how the actual race day went…

Friday, March 19, 2010

Into His Arms

As I mentioned in my previous post this has been a really tough week and a half. Thank you all for you support, encouragement and prayers…they have helped more than you will ever know!

On Saturday night, right before the clock struck midnight, My beloved Gram was ushered into the arms of Jesus. I am so thankful and can’t praise God enough for ending her suffering, but i’m not going to lie – it has been really hard on those of us who are left behind!

Gram had such a special place in my life. She was more than just a grandma, she was a best friend and confidant. There were so many things that i felt only Gram would understand about me. Growing up my brother, sister and I were her only grandkids and so both her and my papa (who passed away 3 1/2 years ago) poured all that they had into us! They both made such an effort to really be apart of our lives and although Gram worked i can’t remember a school or church function of ours that they did not attend.

One of my favorite childhood memories was the monthly friday night sleepovers. One friday night a month it would be just Papa, Gram and I. We would go out to dinner and sometimes even a little shopping trip :) I would get Oreo cookies and milk that night from Papa’s stash and then I would get to take a bath and put on Grams special Chanel bath powder. And yes the sleepover wouldn’t be complete with out breakfast in bed the next morning that included the best oatmeal i have ever had (probably due to the huge amounts of 1/2 and 1/2 and sugar but hey it’s what kids like). I got to eat while watching my saturday morning cartoons in Gram’s bed. Yes, she spoiled us rotten but we loved every minute of it!

When I was in elementary school Gram was diagnosed with emphysema. Although there wasn’t a lot of sudden change to her and i didn’t fully understand what was going on, I knew the road a head would not be easy. As they years went by Gram adopted a new trusty sidekick, her oxygen tank. It’s weird to think back to the times before that because it has been so long and for most of my adult/teenage life it was right by her side. For a while I was scared of it and I distinctly remember accidently turning it off when i was cleaning one time. I freaked out and the first thing that my Gram did was slowly drop to the floor while saying “i’m deflating..” we laughed until a little bit of pee came out (yay friends)! My Gram introduced me to Friends (the show) and my first soap “Day’s of our Lives” which since we weren’t allowed to watch them at home I would get to sneak them while i was at her house :)

Gram had the most amazing and strong spirit.  She loved the Lord and even though as each year passed her health continued to grow weaker she never lost her fight or her smile. We always said that Gram would die first and so when Papa beat her to it boy was she mad! Don’t get me wrong, she loved life, but it sure took a toll on her. The years after Papa died were hard on everyone. My mom became her caretaker and although she lived at home we didn’t know how much longer that would last. We have had some close calls over these last few years but each time Gram would pull through with her spirit still strong and her smile intact. Through these hardships we all grew closer to her and learned to treasure every moment that we had with her because we never knew when it would be the last.

One of my favorite things about Gram was how much love she had to give. I never left the room/house/state without her telling me how much she loved me. I loved to watch her face light up when she would talk about what God was teaching her or Papa or her family.

It is really neat to see how God’s timing is always perfect. When Josh first got his orders to deploy and I decided to head out to California, I never guessed that it would be to spend my Gram’s last few months with her. Oh and boy did we have a good last few months. When Papa died there were a lot of things that I wished I would have done with him so with Gram I tried really hard to spend as much time as I could with her no matter what was going on or how I was feeling.

God gave us a special gift these last two months. He gave Gram a burst of only he knows what that allowed her to do so much more than she had been able to for a long time. I was able to build some wonderful memories that i will treasure for the rest of my life. We went to the mall together, when out to dinner and brunch, talked everyday on the phone, cried and laughed together, and had some of the most amazing conversations. It was so neat to be able to talk for a long time together without her gasping for breath. And she felt good. She wanted to do stuff and I was so glad I was here to take advantage of that.

Emphysema is one of the worst diseases I could ever wish upon a person. Gram loved life and she loved us, but she was ready to go meat her maker and be reunited with the love of her life (her lobster) and her precious son. Someone recently told me about a book they read talking about how it will be when we get to heaven. In the book, the author said that he thought we would have all of our loved ones running towards us pulling Jesus with them to introduce us to him….I can just imagine what it must have been like when Gram arrived. She has spend the last 16 years in bondage to this awful disease and she is finally free to breath, dance, laugh, and sing! And she has left us with the most wonderful memories and more importantly the promise of getting to see her again!

Yes, I miss her more than i ever though possible. I finish my runs and go to call her and realize that she is no longer here. She was my biggest cheerleader and I am so happy that I was able to share that part of my life with her. The selfish part of me wants her back, but then i remember how much she was suffering, how ever breath was a struggle and how much worse the disease could get and then i get down on my knees and thank God for taking her. The older I got and the more time we spent together, the more I started to realize how a like we were. She taught me so many valuable lessons, like how you have to vacuum in 5 different directions to make sure the carpet is really clean. She taught me the importance of family, generosity and spending time together..oh yeah and finding the perfect outfit!

Gram I love you so much and I will hold you in my heart till we meet up in heaven! Thank you for being an amazing example of a Godly woman, mother and gram. Oh and thank you for introducing me to Nordstroms :) I miss you everyday but I am so thankful that you are dancing free in heaven!

gram gram christmas




I love you Gram!!!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Try’em Out Tuesday – Fab new Clif C Bar revealed

Sorry that I have MIA this last week. This has been one of the toughest weeks ever for me and I promise I will update you all in the next post but I am just not ready to write about it yet.

So as a way to distract myself from reality and since I have been slacking with my tuesday editions, I am busting one out for you all right now!

A few posts ago I bragged to you all about how I got to go check out a new running store in Valencia and then on to whole foods with one of my best friends (who i am now going to refer to as B.B.V. because all growing up i called her Bethany Butter V – i don’t want to reveal her last name in case she doesn't want it plastered all over my blog – love you friend)!

We are both the kind of people who can spend hours wandering around this amazing store (whole foods) and still not want to leave! It’s funny how organic packaged food can be so enticing! I have started to learn though that it is only after an hour wandering the aisles that you really discover the true gems of this grocery heaven.

So once we got there B.B.V. and I went our separate ways to scope out the products that struck our fancy! For some reason though, we always ended up meeting back near the produce and where they have all the meal/snack bars displayed. Now neither one of us is huge into meal/snack bars but we couldn’t help being mesmerized by all the different selections. And luckily B.B.V. has known me long enough to know that she would never get me out of there without first allowing me to read all the different ingredients on each bar that I picked up (and boy were there a lot).

However, this is also when i fell in love with my newest food obsession: The Clif C which contains fruit, nuts, and sea salt.


One reason that i don’t buy a lot of the Clif bars or other nutrition snack bars is because they tend to have more calories that I like to eat in a snack (though i probably should be eating that much but one step at a time). I found this bar though and thought “hey i like fruit and nuts and boy I wonder how the sea salt would enhance the flavors” and since it only has 130 calories I decided to give it a go. I purchased the raspberry kind to try because usually you can’t go wrong with raspberry. One bite into this fruitful magic and i was hooked. No Joke these bars are legit! They are chewy and fruity and nutty and then the little bit of salt hits you and you are like “wow what was that pop in my mouth – I don’t know but I like it”! And not only that but they are natural and good for you too!

Here is a little info for you all straight from the mouth of their website:

What is CLIF C?

CLIF C is a new, double layered fruit and nut bar made with all natural and organic ingredients that bring a delicious blend of flavors and textures to every bite. The nut crust on the bottom is a blend of almonds, macadamias and dates and each bar is topped with a second layer of fruit and then sprinkled with toasted almonds.
Is CLIF C Organic?

CLIF C bars are 70 percent organic and made with all natural fruits, nuts and sea salt.

What are the key nutritional benefits of CLIF C?

Clif C contains one serving of fruit in each bar. Each bar has 130 calories, 4.5 grams of fat and is a good source of fiber.
When should I eat CLIF C?

CLIF C is a great tasting snack for any time of day. Grab one for breakfast when you’re on your way out the door or toss one in your bag for an afternoon snack when you need a pick me up.

Why is Clif introducing CLIF C?

CLIF was determined to make a great tasting fruit and nut snack bar by blending a moist, chewy crust with the natural taste of baked fruit and crunchy roasted nuts.

To learn more about this wonder bar please visit

They have other flavors that the raspberry too and I am anxious to try them as well! The only problem is that so far whole foods is the only store where I can find them and that is about an hour and a half away (and believe me i have looked all over Bako with no luck)! Ahhhh! I'm seriously going through withdrawals!

So please if you are near a whole foods go buy one right now and check it out (and send me a couple of boxes too)! Or at least let me know what you think!

Have a wonderful and fruity, nutty, salty day!

Wednesday, March 10, 2010

3 years of Bliss

So I had great plans of this awesome post dedicated to the love of my life and best friend (the hubs) in honor of our 3 year anniversary (yesterday), but things got a little crazy when we had to take my grandma to the hospital last night and didn’t know if she would come out those doors, which we are still unsure but constantly praying! Wow that was a really long sentence!

I guess it’s okay to be one day late with this post, especially since we don’t fully get to celebrate until the Hubs gets back. It was interesting being back in Bako by myself on our anniversary since this was the town that we got married in. I got to talk to the Hubs via webcam in the morning so that was so wonderful!

I am still in shock that it has been 3 years since we walked down the aisle and spoke those sacred words, where us as two individuals became one. Yes these last 3 years have had their ups and downs, we have made and learned from our mistakes, grown together as a couple, grown closer to God together, moved way more times than any couple should during their first 3 years of marriage, been separated more than i would like and i wouldn’t do anything different! The Lord has gotten us through many things in these last 3 years and I really can’t wait to see what he has for us in the next 70 years together(or however many we have).

I truly can’t imagine a better partner in crime than Josh. We are so different yet so alike. He defiantly keeps me grounded. He is truly my best friend and is the first person i want to celebrate or cry with. He deals with my wacky and picky ways, my constant obsessions over whatever is striking my fancy at the time, my never-ending search for a new residence, and my moody-ashley spells!

Josh you bring more to my life than I ever thought possible. You are the peanut butter to my jelly (and right now i am obsessed with PB so you know how important that is)! Thank you for making these last 3 year the best so far! You support me in everything I do and you are my biggest cheerleader! Thank you for loving me no matter what. Thank you for being a wonderful provider for our family and an awesome man of God. I can’t wait to see what crazy adventures God has in store for us. I love being your wife more than anything else in the world!

And for one final bit of cheesiness here are some pics of us from the last 3 years:

088 146 mom's pics 1601

blog pics 004 DSC02144

I love you babe!!! Happy Anniversary :)

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Up close and personal with the steering wheel

First i am happy to announce that Ursula is fully healed and looking better than ever with her new window. I was really impressed with how helpful USAA was. I called to report the incident and even though i didn’t file a claim (because it ended up costing lest than our deductable) they still have me file a report. After that was done the connected me to the glass company that they use and they came out the next day..TO MY HOUSE..and fixed it in the driveway..yay! I was so relieved to just have to make one phone call and have it all taken care of.

They fixed the window on tuesday so the next time I drove my baby was wednesday morning. I had to work but I needed to get my run in before work so I headed out at 5:30 am to complete my 7 miles, grab my new addiction (a peanut butter bagel from bagels and blenders.. so yummy), change in their bathroom and jet to work (sorry no shower but at least i had to wear a hat so it covered most of the grossness)! When i got in the car all blurry-eyed at the butt crack of dawn it took me a minute to realize why my car felt so weird. I finally realized that my driver seat was sitting straight up (like not reclined at all and making me feel like I am kissing my steering wheel…actually it’s the most action i’ve gotten for a while ..come back hubs)!

What was i saying..oh yeah. So once i realized the cause to the problem i went to recline my seat back some and it would work! I tried and tried and pushed and pulled and finally gave up. I didn’t know why it wasn’t working but I didn’t really have time to try and fix it. I drove to the bike path (all they way getting frisky with SW ..the thing formally know as the steering wheel) and prayed as i ran that it would magically be working when i got back to my car. I really didn’t want to deal with one more thing going wrong. Each time i got in the car that morning i would try and get it to recline and no luck, i was stuck driving with perfect, and i mean teacher with a ruler perfect posture. I was convinced that either some glass got caught somewhere and jammed it or the stupid punks who broke into my car did more damage than I thought.

Oh my way home from work, still stuck in perfect-posture-getting-frisky-with-SW position I called my dad to see if he could take a look at it when i got home. I really needed to get my oil changed but I couldn’t stand to have to drive in this predicament any longer! On my drive home I was trying to figure out how i could fix it and hoping that I wouldn’t have to shell anymore money..i was really freaking out! My wonderful father met me at the door when i got home and i took him out to the car to show him the problem seat.

In typical dad fashion he sat in the seat, pulled the lever, and pop the seat reclined! WTH??? How did he do that?! I mean i know my dad can work some magic but seriously! Apparently there are two to recline the seat and who knows what the other one is for except to make me have a total melt down! I did tell my dad that next time I would appreciate it if he would mess with it a little first before fixing it so i wouldn’t feel as dumb!

Don’t get me wrong..totally happy that nothing is broken but it was a little more than i could handle for that day! Note to self..learn more about the inner workings of Ursula!

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Try’em Out Tuesday – Specialty running store edition

First, thank you all for your heartfelt comments and sympathy from the previous post! The glass guy is coming out to fix the window today and i am praying that it wont rain since the garage is full of crap wonderful gems.

Now I know not all of you are runners or enjoy running and I am trying really hard not to bombard this blog with runner posts but even if you aren’t a runner stay with me because this store was off the hook and you have to hear about it :)

I was in dire need of new shoes since the ones I got in December when i came out to Cali already have 277 miles on them and my older pair was way over the limit. Since i am having problems with a tendon in my ankle and I already know i have weird feet, i decided it would be best to get fit correctly for running shoes and shell out the money. I am usually pretty cheap when it come to buying running shoes (I know hubs, I know) but now that i am running a lot more I am seeing the need for quality shoes that fit my exact needs!

So since there is a complete lack of specialty running stores in Bako, one of my bestest friend’s and I headed up to Valencia on Saturday to Runners Lane (a fabulous yet almost hole in the strip mall specialty running store). The drive there was going pretty smoothly (thanks friend for driving since i’m a gimp) until the last 30 minutes when we hit some serious rain and since people don’t know how to drive in the rain some equally serious accidents (end rant here). We were hoping that the rain would work to our advantage..i.e. not many people there, but we were wrong! Since the actual building was pretty small it ended up being packed with people.

However, I was supper impressed with their customer service and was helped right away! I was a little nervous thought when the kid guy who was helping me looked like he was in High school, but i soon was won over and impressed by his ginormous amount of running knowledge (yeah i should be so quick to judge the teens these day and i think he was prob in College or something)!

I had come prepared (or over-prepared) with my last two pairs of running shoes in tow so he could see how i wear and tear them. My feet were measured (and when he didn’t even flinch at my totally weird feet and gross purple nails i knew he was okay in my book), shoes were brought out, problem areas were talked about, and i was in runners heaven!

The coolest part was the Gait Analysis. For those of you like me who didn’t know what that was exactly here is a rundown:

They measure your feet and then you step on a treadmill with a video camera set to tape how you are running. From this the image of you running is projected on a computer screen and they are able to see exactly what your foot does naturally and what type of shoe would work best. You want your ankle and calf to be in a straight line. Then every time you try on a different pair you jump back on the treadmill and they compare how your straight you stay in each pair to see which one works best. it is also a great way to get to try out a shoe before you buy it!

P.S. if you want to learn more about how it works go here:

I knew that i over-pronated (where my ankles roll in I run on the inside of my foot). It was so neat to be able to see it in person and see how just by wearing a shoe with more support my ankle and calf became straight and a lot less pressure landed on my problem tendon! I also learned that I point my toes out to the side (yes i run semi bow-legged) and so by fixing that with the shoes my running is now more efficient b/c i am exerting my energy forward and not outward!

I found my perfect pair of new shoes that I am loving so far!! So what did I end up with..

My new fab shoes are Brooks Womens Adrenaline GTS 10

shoe Love them!!

Why? Well here is the description straight from the Brooks website:

“Woo Hoo! Runner's World gave the GTS 10 its "Best Update" award in the Winter 2010 Shoe Guide in its December 2009 issue, on newsstands Nov. 4, 2009.
Always the leader, the Adrenaline™ GTS 10 has left the pack even further behind. The fit? Never better. The support? Perfection. As the legend hits double digits with its tenth iteration, the shoe is more dialed-in than ever. Now with a plush Profile Sockliner to sweeten the feel.” (courtesy of 

The have worked great so far and I have had a lot less pain in my ankle..yay!! A+ for brooks shoes :) And price wise they weren’t as bad as I would have thought (about $100).

Oh and i also learned that if i buy my running shoes in a 9.5 instead of a 9 then my toe nails might live to see a few more years :)

I also left there with some other goodies:

bodyglide b/c apparently my newest chafing problem is due to my increasing distance and not because my legs are getting bigger (according to the clerk who gave me a really weird look when i said i thought it was do to my growing thighs!)

features socks Feetures Original No Show comfy!

armwarmer Nike dry fit armwarmers so now i can look like a cool runner and stay warm!

We had such a blast and it was really neat to be able to learn more about how i personally run and what my specific needs are! Even if you don’t run or exercise a lot I would totally recommend getting fitted at least once so that you know what kind of support you need for you individual feet (because believe me they can seem like they are from two totally different people!).

Oh and then of course since we drove all that way we had to go to Whole foods (insert yummy food and products now) and then eat a wonderful linner (lunch and dinner) at Claim Jumper (insert double yummy food here)  :)

So in the end Specialty running stores are totally worth all they hype!