Friday, September 29, 2006

100 IM as recovery

Today's swim was great if you consider 100 IM recovery. I can't recall the warm up but today the main set was:

200 fly (broken)
100 IM
200 back
100 IM
200 breast
100IM
200 free
100 IM

After Wednesday's swim my right tricep went into spasm for about 8 hours. You could see it hop from across the room, that kind of sucked. I replaced fly with fly kick and free style and mixed all of the 200s so I didn't over fatigue any muscles.

Evenings

School started and Bill is up to his eyeballs in business classes. Meanwhile, Cassie and I are using our spare time to explore the fine art of relaxation. I'm trying to come down off of five years of addictive triathlon training and rewire my impulses to less extreme endeavors.

The compulsion is to replace one addiction for another so I am very purposefully exploring a balanced life.

Last night was lovely, Bill was at an evening class so I took the dog for a walk at the park and ran into Lonnie and Samara at the playground. We chatted for a while and as the sun set we slowly walked home and ran into some more people for another chat and I took my sweet time getting home. A month ago, I would have been running with the dog and I would have stopped briefly to say hi and then finished my workout so I could get home and rest.

I have limited my friendships in the past few years because I didn't think I had the time or energy for them. So my new goal is BALANCE--I need to achieve it. Tuesday night I followed Bill to play disc golf and enjoyed a beer while watching the guys play. Wednesday was ladies craft night, I made cupcakes and committed to walking with some of the ladies on my lunch break. ahhhhh ohm. I still have swim class to wear me out. And it does!

On Saturday, I turn 34 and I don't want to talk about it. I think we are heading out for some overnight camping tonight, a hike tomorrow and then a nice birthday dinner back in town in the evening. I would like us to work on the deck on Sunday and put up covering (roof) so I can spend more time outside on the back deck this winter. About 1/3 of it is covered and the rest is open and I want to put up a temporary roof for the winter so we can read out there while it rains. Its been SO NICE this week, the weather has been in the 80s and perfect! But the rain will come and we have to keep the kitties and puppy dry. Bill is thrilled!

Wednesday, September 27, 2006

Retro race report: Cascades Edge Sprint Triathlon 2003

As I sit here icing my throbbing elbow (stupid fly!) I thought I would take a look back at the races I have done and recall some of the reasons why I love triathlon. Each week I will post a race report from the past, trying to recall as much as I can about the race and how hilarious my performances were.

I will start with my best execution in a race because if I start with some of my other performances you will think I'm an idiot! I was reminded of this race while spectating for Bill this past weekend as it is on the same course as Black Diamond only earlier in the year. Here is what I recall:

The Cascades Edge triathlon was held for the first time on 6/7/2003 and I had a lot of motivation to go hard at this race. Even though it was early June, I had already completed four triathlons in the previous 3 months and I wasn't happy with my performances in any of them. I always finish hard but I felt like I could probably go even harder.

Also, I had been underperforming in front of my new boyfriend (Bill) who was a hard core Ironman dude and I felt like it was time for me to impress him a little. So I planned to go all out until the finish.

The only problem with that is I'm not a good swimmer, but I focused and went for it, coming out of the water way back of the top women. My swim time: 15:01 which put me in 40th place overall. So I hit the bike hard and worked on passing as many people as I could in 12 miles. I felt pretty good, biking my way back up to 19th overall. I remember singing Ben Harper's song "Homeless Child" in my head which made no sense at all, but I was kicking butt so don't mess with the homeless child!

Bill was waiting in transition and yelled that I was the 4th female. There was a girl running in front of me in a swimsuit which was great because that is my revenge on a swimmer. Swimmers do triathlons in swimsuits. Swimmers can't run. I can't swim but I can run. So I was going to pass Ms. Swimmer with authority and revenge was mine. Die swimmer die (I'm really bitter about my swim skills).

I wanted to win this race and it was going to hurt. The run is on a trail around the lake that you run out and back and is short of a 5k, I think its 1.4 miles around so 2.8 miles total for the run. I went out as hard as I could, practically hyperventilating I was breathing so hard. I have never blown up in a race before and it felt like it could come any minute.

I think I passed a woman or two but was getting discouraged because I wasn't catching any more. I had to go harder but suddenly I was at the turn around. There were no women in front of me anymore, I was leading the race! Good except there was a woman coming up on me and I hate being chased! So I kicked it up again and hoped I could make it to the finish before she caught me or I died. I have never been in so much self induced pain in my entire life.

I can remember it now, more than three years later--it hurt really bad to go that hard. My run time: 18:32. I crossed the line before any other woman and was 13th overall. I looked at past years results and the only woman to run faster than me in the next three years is Heidi Grimm who ran 17:39. Heidi Grimm is a much better triathlete than I am so I am proud of my performance on that run. It hurt.

After the race, several people came up to me to congratulate me and say good job. I don't think Bill realized I was the first place female initially and he asked if we were sticking around for the awards. He was irritated at me for paying $60 to race a sprint triathlon and that we drove 3+ hours to go to it and he didn't really get why I needed to do the race. I would say that was a learning experience for both of us. IN YOUR FACE BILL! YEAH!

Anyway, I think what finally impressed him was that I won a new bike seat (that I gave him) and got a sweet glass trophy.

What I learned from that race: going all out hurts and I don't know that I like it. Sounds funny, but I don't know that I am a win-at-all-costs type of person. I am definitely competitive, but there is a limit as to how much I am willing to suffer.

That was my best performance, the retro race reports to come will amaze (or disgust) you because I started out with a bomb and have really screwed up nicely a few times (including this year). I may never learn and I think that may be what's fun about it.

300 yards of fly on day 2

I'm writing a retro race report and will post later. It should be good for laughs. Here was our swim workout today (the 2nd day of class this term):

5 minute warm up (I stretch, talk, delay)
600 (2,4,6 50 other stroke)
2x100 IM
2x50 fly or free
4x25 ultra short fly or free
50 recovery
main set x 4 fly, back, breast, free
1x100
2x50
4x25
50 recovery

I had to leave early so I didn't get what happened after the main set. I was dieing after the first 100 fly so don't ask how I got through swimming 2400 yards. One of my lane mates said I started cooling down after the 100 fly which sounded accurate to me. 100 fly that early in a workout is just wrong. I'm waiting to see how soon he has us doing 400 IM.

Tuesday, September 26, 2006

Load the turkey in a backpack and let's go!

On Sunday Bill and I went to the Corvallis Fall Festival and he bought an early birthday present for me from an artist that specializes in cartoon animals. We bought three prints for our future baby room. (Ohhh!) This is big progress for Bill: #1 he bought art #2 he acknowledged a baby is in our future #3 he bought me a birthday present!

This marriage thing is serious! The monkey and turtle pictures are two of the prints we bought.

Good news: The results of my ultrasound came back normal--I think the Dr. might have caused the small cyst to rupture in the exam which is why I had such a bad time the following day. Now I just get to take hormones and relax. RELAX ! RIGHT NOW!

I spoke with my mom last night about Thanksgiving and we are considering a trip to the Wallowa Mountains that weekend. I tried to read some descriptions of lake side resorts to Bill but he liked the idea of hiking into to old Forest Service cabins (that are free). I said, "What about turkey dinner?" and he said, "Your mom can load the turkey into a backpack , strap on some snowshoes, and hike it in."

Monday, September 25, 2006

Black Diamond 1/2 Ironman triathlon

The race organizers of the Black Diamond 1/2 Ironman were kind enough to transfer my registration to Bill so we didn't lose the entry fee when I decided to bail on this, my key race of the season. It was not an easy decision for me, but it was a good one. There was no way I could handle the wedding planning, working, my web store and train for this race. I cracked, which is fine, I ended up having unforseen physical problems too so I appreciated watching on Saturday (it looked like a hard race) and I'm looking forward to coming back to race here because when I raced in 2003, I screwed up and would like to give myself a real chance to race here.

Here's a recap of Bill's race: Bill came out of the water after warming up with the back of his wetsuit gapping open. I rezipped it for him and he ran back just before the swim start, hoping it would stay shut. Meanwhile, our wonder dog Marshall chewed through his leash and ran off so I got to chase him and try to control him while the triathlon got under way. Marshall wants to save people when they are swimming so he was wound up and now I only had a small portion of the leash left to control him.

Bill came out of the water in 4th place and as he ran toward the transition area, Marshall got away from me and started chasing Bill. Thankfully some volunteers caught Marshall for me (that was SO embarassing) and I decided to take the dog on a walk around the lake to try to get him to calm down. The bike course is 3 loops in a figure 8 shape with 1 loop done twice (1st and 3rd) and the 2nd loop featuring a large hill called Mud Mountain. Anyway, I made it out onto the bike course in time to give Bill a split: he was 4 minutes down to 1st place and was riding in 8th.

After the 2nd loop, he was 11 minutes down on 1st and in 10th place. 1st place was smashing everyone and Bill was not making up any time, he can race a 1/2 with minimal training but he sure wasn't going to win it! The bike course is long at 62 miles and has views of Mt Rainier and nice road conditions. I decided to find a spot on a run course where I could see Bill multiple times so Marshall and I walked about 1.5 miles and found the first aid station and decided to hang out there. I tied up Marshall so I could help distribute water and Gatorade and hoped he wouldn't get away, fortunately he decided to lay still and watch the race while I had fun passing out drinks to racers.

First place had a 20 minute lead on everyone by the time he ran by and things didn't change much at all during the run. Bill basically held his position, finishing 11th overall. Not bad for someone who averaged about 2000 yards of swimming, 60 miles of biking and 10 miles of running a week for the past several weeks. He can fake a 1/2 pretty darn well. I don't think he enjoyed every minute of it, but I enjoyed watching him and that's what matters!

We took the long way home and drove around Mt Rainier but decided not to hike. All of the hikes would have been straight up and down and since we were too tired to get out of the car at the ranger station, we just enjoyed view the mountain from the car, or at least I did, Bill took a nap. We got home around 9:30 pm, showered, and sat on the couch to watch a movie. It was a long day!

Also, along the way we stopped for a view of Mount St. Helens and decided we need to make a trip there soon, I've never been to the park there which is a damn shame considering I've lived nearby for 5 years. I have vivid memories of the big eruption, the ash made it to my hometown Spokane and we were coated in ash for a few weeks. It was very bizarre because it coated everything like snow and you couldn't go anywhere for a while. I should ask my parents what they remember about it since I was too little to recall a lot about it. Here's the a view from the north of the top of St. Helens:

Friday, September 22, 2006

mmmm free grape juice


We enjoyed a dinner party at Tyee winery last night, one of the advantages of living in Oregon: local wineries. Tyee is not at the top of my list but grape juice is grape juice and it tastes even better when its free! They served teriyaki Salmon and several salads with marionberry pie for dessert. Bill and I both savor any free meals since he's been a student the majority of our relationship we have become very grateful dinner guests.

I never reported on my grape juice drinking last weekend. I had horrendous cramps all day Saturday but we had plans to attend dinner at a friend's house (who is a very good cook) so I got myself together and we made it there to find out he had over 60 bottles of wine that he had bottled himself from my favorite wine maker Belle Vallee cellars. I think I drank an entire bottle of wine to myself and by the end of the evening I felt NO PAIN. Good times! Between him and our friend Lonnie who brews beer, we could stay happily drunk year round. Too bad I'm drunk at two drinks and Bill rarely drinks!

Anyhooooo we're leaving for the Mt Rainier area after work today and Bill is doing the Black Diamond 1/2 Ironman tomorrow. Ouch! His training has been spotty but its better him than me, he can fake his way through a 1/2 and still do quite well. After the race we'll do some hiking at Mt Rainier so I'll have some nice photos from the area. I think Mt Rainier is the most beautiful peak in the northwest. We're headed home on Saturday after the hike/race so we'll get home late and exhausted but then we can attend the Corvallis Fall Festival on Sunday, its an arts and crafts fair and one of my favorites.

Still waiting to hear back about the sonogram results. My Dr. prescribed hormones (specific birth control pills that have high estrogen) to help get rid of the cyst and the prescription cost $45 and I have to renew it monthly. Typically estrogen supplements make me sick so I'm not happy about the hormones or extra monthly expense. The plan is to stop them by January since I would like to get pregnant next year. If we weren't taking our honeymoon in Mexico in December I would have a hard time waiting but I don't want to be pregnant in Mexico on my honeymoon. Too much information I know but wait until I get pregnant, I'll detail every ache and pain on my blog ;)

Thursday, September 21, 2006

El Diablo


Big day today: Bill is at orientation for the MBA program and is getting started on graduate school part 2. It was not an easy decision for him to go back for a 2nd masters degree but his degree in Marine Resource Management was getting him temp jobs and not the type that provide stability to start a family.

Last night at ladies craft night one of the ladies was celebrating the completion of her PhD. Her mother was there and told us how she had won a national science competition during high school and had been invited to the White House twice. Great story, she met Clinton and he encouraged her to intern at the White House and they had their photo taken together. Her mom made a bunch of copies of the photo for Xmas cards and then the news broke about Lewinsky.

Speaking of the White House, we decided Cassie could have the nickname "El Diablo" for her alter ego. Tonight we are attending an office party at a local winery, should be a good one! Tomorrow we leave for the Mt Rainier area so Bill can compete in the Black Diamond 1/2 Ironman and I will sulk I mean support him from the sidelines.

Wednesday, September 20, 2006

Who needs friends when you can watch football?

I still don't know if there is a mouse in the house but the dog decided to roll in something nasty last night on his evening walk so he got to take a shower with me last night before bed. We find it easier to make him get in the shower with a door that shuts rather than hold him down in the tub.

Bill teased him this morning by making him come in the bathroom while I was showering. He ran off pretty fast. On mornings when I blow dry my hair the dog comes in and sits at my feet until I brush his hair. It's pretty dang adorable.

Physical therapy went really well yesterday, the therapist says the elbow injury is totally curable and is mostly caused my sleeping with your arms bent. So I get to sleep with a cast form to keep my right arm straight all night. I'm also doing some great neck stretches for my bulging disc so I am feeling much more hopeful about everything.

I have backed off of strenous exercise to reduce my stress, gain some weight, and allow these injuries to heal. I have been hiking/walking a lot and I am thinking about how I will exercise if I get pregnant next year. There are a tons of trails in the forest here so I think I will try to walk every trail in the area as a goal while I am pregnant. We'll see, everything is speculative right now. I will keep taking the faculty/staff masters swim class but will only go twice a week and plan not to do the entire workout. Especially the 400IM or 100 fly sets!

Tonight I am heading to an all women's craft night, two of the women are pregnant and there aren't any hard core triathletes in the group so I guess you could say I am branching out of my friendship circle. I don't think hanging out with Ironman addicts full time will help Bill or I right now as Bill is starting a strenous MBA program here shortly and I have the pregnancy bug big time. I am making a concerted effort to make new friends and Bill is sticking to his typical attitude about making friends which can be summed up as: what the hell do we need friends for when there is college football on TV!?!

We've already been on two "new friends dates" in the past two weeks so you can guess who is winning that battle. Here is my baby after his shower ;)

Tuesday, September 19, 2006

A mouse in the house

Last night Bill and I were watching a movie and the door to the back yard was open so the kitties could come in and out and we heard the older cat meowing at the door... I yelled, "Bill! The cat has a mouse in her mouth and she brought it in the house!" Bill, being new to owning cats, yelled at the cat, grabbed her and threw her outside which I believe caused her to drop the mouse in the house and now the mouse has gone to places unknown.

Yuck! This is not the worst thing this cat has done, one time she brought a snake in the house and after I set it free in the back yard, she brought it back in the house a few minutes later. I'm going to ask Bill to tear apart that sofa to make sure the mouse didn't crawl up in it to die, otherwise, we're buying a new couch.

Today I start physical therapy for my elbow and tomorrow I go get the ultrasound on my ovaries. Feels a bit much to handle at the same time but at least the ovarian cyst is not a big deal. I had one about ten years ago and had to have emergency surgery when it ruptured. It was SO painful and I could have lost an ovary from the surgery but I didn't it worked out fine.

The funny part about that situation was no one believed me that I was in pain. My roommate made me go shopping with her all day (I was doubled over outside her dressing room) then I went to my parent's house and my mom made me get up off the floor to eat dinner because I was rolling around in pain. My mom thought I was constipated so she made me take a suppository (yea thanks mom) but that wasn't it so then I had severe gas AND I was cramping and nauseated. Finally, I called my mom at about 10 pm that night and told her I had to go to emergency. My neck was locked up because I was clenching my teeth from the pain and I couldn't move. A few hours later I was having surgery, they coterized the cyst and I haven't had a problem since then until now. That was awful!

This cyst isn't even 1/8 of the pain so I'm not worried, I was just suprised to hear that I had one. I went to the Dr for advice on pregnancy and got a cyst instead but we'll get through this quickly and then we'll start thinking about babies for next year.

Monday, September 18, 2006

Silver Falls

DSC04223

Yesterday Bill rode his bike 55 miles to Silver Falls while I drove in the car with the dog. Silver Falls is a state park outside of Salem, Oregon that has 10 waterfalls you can visit. It was very touristy but there are some nice trails for hiking, I am just spoiled and used to hiking in more remote places. More pics in my online album.

I did not feel well at all this weekend, on Saturday I spent the majority of the day reading on our back deck. Sunday I walked Marhsall in the morning and hiked a bit in the afternoon to see the waterfalls but I was too cooked to do much at all.

Today I am better, I don't know if the cyst on my ovary ruptured or if the Dr visit just irritated it but I had lower back pain and nausea all weekend. I am so glad I put my triathlon goals aside or I would be really disappointed to have trained through our wedding and then had all this happen.

I'm going to do some baking tonight and see if that makes things better. One nice thing: when I woke up this morning little kitty Cassie was snuggled into the dog who was hogging the entire bed. Those two are totally best buds, its hilarious. Here's a pic of Cassie loving up her Marshall:


Friday, September 15, 2006

Not the best news

All my baby talk got me in trouble and not the type you would think! I had an appt with my family Dr. and found out I have a cyst on one of my ovaries. I get to have a sonogram next week and hope the cyst doesn't rupture because if it does I'll get a trip to the ER. I know this because it happened to me about 10 years ago. I had a cyst the size of a golf ball on my ovary and it ruptured to the point that I had to have emergency surgery.

We have cancelled our trip to climb South Sister this weekend (it was snowing anyway) and I'll stop by the library tonight since I'll be spending my weekend reading instead.

The good news is we caught it early and I'm not trying to get pregnant yet. My Dr. told me the more I obsess about getting pregnant the more stressed I'll be and the less likely I will be to get pregnant. grrrrrrrr. Hello, I get things done because I obsess about them and now you want me to stop obsessing so I can get something done. Great. I'll handle that well!

I think we'll plan our honeymoon this weekend so I can forget about all this for a while. I think a trip to the Caribbean sounds about right.

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Insane in the membrane

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The latest addition to our animal family is Cassie the baby kitty. My sister gave Cassie to Bill, this will be his first kitty cat. He's thrilled (I think). Bill was feeling overrun by animals so he tried to kick Marshall off the bed at night but this morning I woke up and I was wrapped around Marshall (spooning him) and Cassie was asleep on his head. It must have been cold last night or something.

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Marshall and Cassie have a special relationship where he follows her everywhere and she attacks him. She bites, scratches, hits, and jumps all over him while he tries to lick her. Her fur is often matted together from Marshall kisses. They are infatuated with eachother which is nice because Marshall is entertained and someone is watching baby Cassie most of the time. Marshall's tolerance of Cassie is so high he even lets her eat his food, here they are having breakfast together:

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Cassie's favorite toy is a box of tissue paper we have kept from our wedding gifts since she likes it so much. A few minutes in this box and paper is everywhere and Cassie has the insane baby kitty look on her face.

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Get ready for many insane kitty face photos in the weeks to come!

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Wednesday, September 13, 2006

Nonsensical

Got the results back from the MRI and the bulging disc has not worsened in the past 2 years and he saw some arthritis in my neck/upper back. Nothing new or revealing so he hooked me up to a machine to electrocute the nerves in my right arm and confirmed I have ulnar nerve lesion or in words I can understand: a problem in my elbow that is causing weakness into my right hand.

I thought the bulging disc was worsening so the good news is that it is not but the bad news is I have an elbow injury I didn't know about. What is strange is I crashed my bike and hit my left elbow hard enough to leave a scar but my right elbow is screwed up. I have no idea how this happened.

So, surgery is not recommended because they have to make such a large incision to fix it that the leftover scar tissue can negate the results of surgery. I get to go to occupational and physical therapy for the next few weeks and wear a brace on my elbow for a while. My dork factor will surge. I guess this is good news...

The really good news is that he stuck a bunch of needles into my muscles in my arm and back and determined that my nerves and muscles are healthy. Myotonic muscular dystrophy runs in my family but doesn't show until late 20s-50s and he said he saw no evidence of that so I think I am free of it. My mom doesn't have it but some of her siblings do. I might ask for genetic testing before I get pregnant which is my goal for next year. Don't tell Bill about my goal. Just kidding.

Monday, September 11, 2006

Wedding Photos

Here is a link to a complete online photo album of our wedding and reception with photos taken by Kara. I'll put my favorites up later when I'm not so burnt out on looking at them, I doubt anyone but our own mothers want to see all of these pics!

We had a great weekend hanging out with friends and catching up on sleep. Saturday afternoon we planned to go mountain biking but I took a two hour nap instead.

We are enjoying the new entertainment provided by the latest edition to our animal family. Once this wedding stuff is done I'll start posting features on Cassie the kitty.

Thursday, September 07, 2006

Wedding weekend: part 4

Right now I'm trying to take advantage of our final summer days so when I got home last night I went to the fridge for the quintessential summer evening beverage only to find my new husband had removed all of the beer from the fridge and put it in the warm garage. grrrrr. Fortunately, I had some nice Oregon wines in the rack so I tested out one of our new wine glasses (a nice wedding gift) while relaxing on the back deck watching the cat and dog play in the yard. I had a very profound thought: Marshall is no longer a puppy and he needs a jaunty neck scarf ASAP! So my new goal is to find the perfect bandana for our little man. All I can say is what triathlon goals? I'm over it! ANYWAY!

These photos were taken by my mom, I'll put better photos up when we receive them.

Of course our wedding day is mostly a blur, but here is what I remember: before I was able to get dressed or brush my teeth, I had to call Bill 3 times about 3 different things he needed to do and he wasn't answering his phone. Finally he called me back and I was able to get some last minute work done on the wedding before going upstairs to shower and lock myself in my room until show time.

Meanwhile, Bill went for a trail run with friends and two of his brothers and then had a beer before he got dressed for the wedding (oh to be the groom!) I forgot to mention that Friday he got up before sunrise and went for a 16 mile run, then he took his brother and sister in law to master's swim at noon, and then played 18 holes of disc golf. It was hard to get his brain to function after all that (grin) but I'm sure he wouldn't change a thing.

My sister did my hair and I tried to be patient while she curled and pinned until my hair looked way nicer than what I had dreamed. Melissa was on hand to take photos and Sarah was there to sew my special bra into my dress at the last minute. We had a joke amongst the girls that I should throw my bra instead of my bouquet since they all wanted the bra way more (it was a special purchase from Victoria's Secret) More than you want to know, but hey, this is my blog and I think its funny!

I could look down into the back yard from my window on the people arriving and everyone seemed to be trying to stay out of the sun. It was forecast to be 96 degrees (in Oregon in September!) and there is no shade in our yard so we needed to get the ceremony started. Our friend Eric, a local musician and coworker at the university, was our musician and he played acoustic guitar which I could hear from my room. The processional began but our flower girl (age 3) and ring bearer (age 2) didn't walk but ran down the aisle (separately). Poor babies! They were cute though!

As I started down the aisle I noticed Bill was standing on the wrong side, he decided he wanted to see me coming and threw protocol to the wind. He whispered to me that I looked beautiful and Even (old Griz) got the ceremony started. He did a great job speaking, having memorized the entire first part of the ceremony we had written, then Sarah got up and did a reading from The Velveteen Rabbit that was very touching. Next we exchanged vows and rings and my sister Alyson got up and read the Apache Wedding Blessing.

A few nice comments and bam! Bill and Erika are now wed. HOOO-RAAAHHH! We did a quick greeting line and took some photos in our back yard before heading off to the reception which I will write about tomorrow. Hopefully I will have more photos for you to see, my mom did a fine job taking these but they are pretty far away.

Wedding weekend: part 3

So I took the Xanax for the MRI yesterday and slept through the entire thing. Bill drove me home and I slept for 2+ more hours and then lounged around like an invalid for the rest of the day. I think that was a good idea, I feel much better today. We got out of the house around 9pm to walk the dog underneath a nearly full moon and cooler temps which felt great in the morning for the bike commute to work! I love cool mornings!

Alright, so back to the wedding: my parents spent most of the day at the club house alternating between lounging at the pool and prepping food for the wedding. I was at full speed by the time I got there and could barely focus long enough to get the computer up for the slide show. I will post links to the slideshow tomorrow, I didn't get anything done yesterday so I still need to load those to the web. We ordered pizza from American Dream (our local favorite) and Bill and buds arrived sweaty and victorious from their disc golf tournament just in time for the show.

The slideshow was well received even though it was a bit lengthy and afterwards the kids hit the swimming pool while the adults socialized. I had to hustle the ladies out the door for our 8:30 pm reservations at Big River for dessert and drinks. Of course I was late, but once I had a martini in hand I had no problem relaxing. The drink went straight to my head (I had eaten 1 bowl of cereal, 1/2 muffin, and a slice of pizza all day) and I was giggling at my friend Dawn Marie (she was so excited for dessert she said "I saved myself all day for this!" which I found totally hilarious).

Anyway, the bachlorette party was hosted by Bill's mom and the ladies behaved themselves appropriately which was fine with me, I didn't need any obscene gifts! Sarah and Melissa had arranged the evening and gave me a fun crown to wear. Bill's mom gave me a saphire necklace earlier in the day that she had purchased eight years eariler for her four daughter-in-laws and was relieved that Bill had finally given her a young woman to wear the final necklace. You might be able to see it in the pic of me. Of course I was touched and so excited to have jewelry to wear!

All of the ladies enjoyed their desserts and Bill picked up my mom, sister and I and took us home before he left for the night. His plan was to sleep on the couch of the club house so he wouldn't see me until I walked down the aisle the next day. We were up until after midnight and then off he went to the club house, only to find the electronic key wouldn't work. Apparently they close the club house after 10pm so Bill spent the night in his car (down by the river). I couldn't sleep a wink and tossed and turned most of the night while Marshall dog hogged the bed.

Tomorrow I will post photos from the wedding and a story about the beautiful day!

Wednesday, September 06, 2006

Wedding weekend: part 2

It's Wednesday, 9/6 and I get the MRI in a few hours. I'm definitely more nervous to get the muscle conductivity tests in a few weeks than the MRI, this is my second one. I'm feeling more like myself since the wedding and getting my motivation back. Bill and I are planning to hike up South Sister in two weeks so we will be doing a test hike this weekend at Mary's Peak. I even get to mountain bike again now that the wedding is over so bruises are in my future!

Back to the wedding stuff: Friday 9/1 I woke up and started scrambling to get ready before Bill's parents arrived to meet my parents for the first time. The meeting was smooth and Bill's parents were off to a clinic in nearby Albany so his mom could receive her routine kidney dialysis treatment. She is looking great and doing very well for someone getting this treatment three times a week. As soon as Bill's parents left the house, his brothers and families arrived and I had to hustle out the door to the spa.

This was the first time I have been to a spa and it's hard to believe there is something this fancy in our one horse town. Apparently, the wives of HP execs and university Deans have money? Anyway, I started off with an hour massage, had my first manicure and then met Sarah and my sister Alyson for the greatest thing ever: a pedicure! Loved it! I tried to relax for the process but I still had a long to do list and time was running out for the wedding planning.

My sister and I rushed home to meet people to decorate our house for the wedding but we were late! My new sister-in-laws (I have 3 now!) assisted with the decorations while Even (ol Griz) entertained them with his "wit" and "sensibilities" which didn't seem to offend them too much. Even's wife Gayle was my wedding coordinator and she brought flowers to decorate the trellis in the back yard and started loading up everything for the reception.

I had to get Bill out the door for his bachlor party, he was meeting a bunch of dudes to play disc golf at nearby Willamette Park. Meanwhile, I had to do my last minute prep on the slideshow for the rehearsal dinner and get everything in the club house ready for our guests to arrive. I had 1 hour to haul our old computer with gigantic monitor downstairs, into the car, and drive it to the club house, just what a girl with a fresh manicure wants to do!

I need to load links to the slideshow and some more photos... I'll catch up later!

Tuesday, September 05, 2006

Wedding weekend: part 1

YES! We did it! We are married! We're still trying to process everything from the weekend but we did a good job of relaxing yesterday (I spent some time floating on the Willamette river and then we had beers at a riverfront pub with friends) and things are getting back to normal today.

Everything with the wedding was beautiful and turned out better than I expected but about half way through the reception I crashed and wanted to go home and be with Bill. Not that I wasn't having a good time, but I hadn't eaten or slept for two days and I was exhausted.

I'll start from the beginning (a very good place to start) on Thursday since that was the day family arrived...

I left work early to get my hair color touched up and then rushed home to find a garage full of food and reception supplies--Bill had been shopping all day. We had a little bit of time to finish cleaning the house before family got there but they were delayed because OSU was hosting an evening football game and traffic coming in to town was awful.

We hosted Bill's parents and two of his brothers and their families for a BBQ at our house. The kids were afraid of Marshall and spent the first hour screaming so things did not start out well. Bill comes from a family of four boys and I come from a family of two girls. Bill's family is loud and they like to talk all at once and my family is quiet and enjoys reading books. You can see how I might handle a house full of Bill's family! Actually, I'm getting used to it and eventually the kids warmed up to the dog and they were calling him Uncle Marshall so it all worked out but it was a rough first few hours initially.

Somehow we managed to get everyone fed and generally happy and they all left for a nearby hotel sometime before 9 pm. My family arrived around 11:30 pm that night so Thursday started the wave of fatigue and stress that I'm still trying to shake off. Actually, the stress is gone now, it's just the fatigue that's looming. Everyone said nice things about our house and the yard and we were thrilled to have everyone visit us but next time it would be better if everyone came at seperate times instead of all at once!