Settling into mundane reality

Settling into mundane reality

This is actually last week’s blog. 🙂

Not sure what happened to last week. Would love to report that I took the week off and had my feet up someplace or was vacationing on a sunny beach. No such luck. Although if that were the case, I’d probably have something exciting to write about. Can’t even say I filled my time voting last week. Thanks to early voting here in Illinois, I did that the week before the election.

My life is filled with mundane reality at the moment.  Working. Running. Housekeeping. Parenting. Highlights include weekends with my boyfriend and a little extra time with my girl this month. Still love Chicago although I miss summer. But every morning I ask, “Alexa, what’s the weather?” and I get the report for Chicago. And then I ask, “Alexa, what’s the weather in Ramsey, New Jersey?” So far, no drastic differences. Somedays better there. Some days better here.

My first season as Let Me Run Chicago Metro regional director is coming to an end and I’m thinking forward to spring and beyond, tasked with expanding this worthwhile program. About 120 boys participated this season and completed their 5k this month. I feel pretty good about that, but every boy should have a chance, so that not only means getting the word out to other schools but finding donors and sponsors to underwrite the program for Title 1 schools and provide scholarships for low income families.

Personally, I am also working on building my business here in Chicago (Click HERE for what I do). So, spending lots of time networking! My daughter, apparently less than satisfied with her social life at college has resorted to coming home (although she still calls New Jersey, not the apartment, “home”) mid-week when she has a day without classes and spending time with me. No problem with that. She even cooked dinner – without being asked! – one night last week!

Somewhere in the middle of all this, I realized that my first opportunity to qualify for the Boston Marathon in my new age group will be next fall. I signed up for the Chicago Marathon lottery and, although still 49 weeks away, I spent a bunch of time last week sketching out a training plan. If I’m really going to do it this time, I have to get serious about it and start prepping myself for the training early. When I ran my marathon PR (personal record) in spring 2014, I had been working hard at strengthening and stretching, as well as speed and endurance, months in advance of the actual marathon training.

While I am not a big fan of winter (here, New Jersey, or anywhere cold), having goals keeps me from just staying under the warm covers and catching up on Netflix. Getting out the door is hard, but whether it’s to log some miles or to have coffee with a new contact, I never, ever, regret doing it. Exploring keeps reality from being too mundane and certainly keeps me busy!

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Exploring the Lakefront Trail. Lincoln Park. Chicago, Illinois. November, 2018.

 

Some thoughts about Move-In Day

Some thoughts about Move-In Day

This week, I moved my daughter – my only child – into her college dorm room. This is a “room” that I would more accurately describe as a “suite.” There are two bedrooms (with the expected amenities) and two full bathrooms for four girls. In addition, there is a living room (with a cable connected, flat screen TV, two chairs and a sofa) and a full kitchen. There is as much, if not quite possibly more, square footage in this space than I have in my new apartment. And I certainly didn’t have anything like this when I was in college. Read more

Fleeting moments surround the empty nest

Fleeting moments surround the empty nest

This past weekend was Lollapalooza, which has become a tradition. Two years ago, my daughter and I, along with her friend, made our first trip together to Chicago for the acclaimed music festival. My daughter’s sweet sixteen present was four-day passes, round-trip airfare, and hotel accommodations (and a chaperone) for her and her friend.  Last summer they had jobs to pay (most) of their own way and talked me into getting the hotel again (thankfully, I had points to use). Read more

A shop teacher’s legacy

A shop teacher’s legacy

It was when I was running every street in my little New Jersey town last summer that I began to notice the Adirondack chairs. I just figured they were a popular item that looked nice on residents’ front porches or lawns. After all, I had two plastic ones I purchased at Home Depot myself. I did estimate that the ones I was noticing were wood and a much higher quality, however.

One day after returning from one of those runs, I found an email from George Chrisafis, the high school shop teacher, telling me that my daughter’s Adirondack chair was at the school and needed to be picked up. Hmmmm. I didn’t even know she had made a chair in shop class (she never tells me anything). Although…a glimmer of a memory from Back-to-School Night? Perhaps. Read more

What we should have been thinking about this Father’s Day weekend

What we should have been thinking about this Father’s Day weekend

I spent Father’s Day weekend doing what I have done for 16 of the last 22 Father’s Day weekends: getting away to the East End of Long Island and running the Shelter Island 10k. I’ve written about it here, and here.  This year was a little different. Instead of using the weekend as an escape, it was a relaxing weekend of quality time with my boyfriend. Read more