Monday, August 30, 2010

softy

Totally shed some tears after my son got on the school bus this afternoon...
I didn't quite expect that.
Did you know the baby book stops at Kindergarten?
Yeah.
My kid is a kid now.
Pretty awesome.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

practice practice practice

is anybody else afraid to put their jeans after not wearing them all summer long? yeah, I've been riding blah blah blah... but, I've also been enjoying my fair share of Golden Monkeys on the back porch & the new ice cream shop that opened in town (two words: Caramel Stout)... the jeans fit anyway. Shoes will take a little more getting used to...I am a year-round flip-flop kind of girl. I don't like to retire them. Upon getting dropped on the first hard effort at practice this morning, I said, "Well, that was totally demoralizing." I was ready to throw in the towel. I was ready to pedal home and abandon cross entirely. My dad offered a little insight, a little perspective... He reminded me that the past few seasons I've been wholeheartedly focused on cross cross cross because my personal life was pretty much sh*t. In other words, now I'm happy...things have turned around. The balance has shifted... it's true & it makes sense. in any case, after a recovery lap, I positively wasted myself to hang onto a wheel and did not get dropped. Honestly, I don't think I had been trying hard enough. My race schedule will be considerably lighter this year (because of aforementioned "balance", among other things)...I have no aspirations to finish 20 races this season... I am a fool for cross, but I don't want January to arrive with me rubbing my eyes, wondering where all the fun autumn mountain bike rides went. 3 practices in the books... the days are getting shorter, huh?

Monday, August 23, 2010

only a matter of time...

Registered for my first cross race of 2010 today... this time, I am a Cat 2 cross racer. Weird (but, inevitable)...can't race B's forever. I'm nervous as f*ck. Excited, though... I think/know I've become a pretty great B racer...I've proven I can ride pretty well in most conditions, I've finished every cross race I've started. I've raced my guts out in the B's for long enough...it's time to move up, I've earned my upgrade...I am ready to get my ass kicked. I love this way too much so I am going to give it a really solid try. I got so dropped at practice last week. Have to dig deeper next time. We bought paint for the bedroom. It was easy. We stayed in and drank a bottle of wine and let the ipod do its own thing on shuffle (guilty pleasures & all). One more week of summer vacation. One more week of packing/moving/uprooting/organizing tons of bike shop disarray.

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

tee are oh you bee ell ee

trouble.
after dinner, we rode our bikes to the park at the end of our street...
my son was was kicking around a soccer ball with Mary...she is seven or eight, we've barely seen her all summer. My son adores her.
When it was time to head back home, he said to her, "Maybe we should have a playdate sometime."
did he just ask her out??
"Mary, what's your phone number?"
dude!
he's FIVE.
I am so in for it, guys, you have no idea...

next...(part II)

one wasteful year in photography school (and this was before the onset of digital, seriously...I rented a 4x5 camera my second semester...the tripod weighed more than all my bikes combined...I think I have six or seven bikes) associates degree in early childhood education 4+ years experience as preschool teacher (2 of those in a Montessori school, the other two in a ramshackle subsidized facility...both ends of the spectrum) 5 (6?) years as orthodontic assistant (4 day work week...ftw) 2(ish) years stay-at-home mom (best job I ever had...probably the one I was best at, too...you know, because I loved it) 16 months retail experience (in the name of bike shop employee/"manager")... Curious/freaking out about where I will land next.

Monday, August 16, 2010

next...

just got word that shop #1 is closing & all inventory is getting packed up & moved into shop #2 (my primary location)... yikes. shop #1 has been open for fifteen years...I was a customer long before I became an employee. On a whim, I started working there very PT...I built my dream bike, then had to move on toward more gainful employment following the break-up and such... This past April found me back in retail, back in the shop...with more responsibilities & slightly more coin (and no bike builds this time around, as tempting as that may be)... I took a chance, knowing full well it may not be enough to sustain my (and my son's) livelihood...I worked it out on paper, I followed my gut. and here I am. kinda shakin in my boots, so to speak... (what have I done??) Time to weigh some pretty heavy decisions again...and wouldn't hurt to polish my resume, I suppose. Have you seen Inception? I thought it was weak... I seldom even go to the movies, but a long & late Sunday afternoon nap left me feeling like we should get out of the house for a bit. "Want to see a movie?" "Like go to the movies?" (like, Kim, you don't go to the movies...) Inception...dreams, surreal Escher-esque landscapes/cityscapes, subconscious, Leo & Marion...sounded intriguing (enough). Meh...

Friday, August 13, 2010

all smiles

The past year or so found me sort of ambivalent about mountain biking/mountain bike racing... following two seasons of injury & illness, I never fully regained my confidence or desire to go fast or go hard... In the past few months, I have fallen in love with mountain biking again (and in turn, racing). I completed 5 races this season (yes, only 5...but this is the girl often heard saying, "I don't really race mountain bikes anymore.") Yeah, sure... 1) Fair Hill presented by Bikeline: this race only reiterated what I was sure I already knew. I no longer have fun racing my mountain bike. Although I finished well & felt pretty good out there, I left feeling glum and underwhelmed. Funky. 2) Baker's Dozen Leesburg, VA (as one third of team C3 Puss in Boots with Marc & Wes): I have this guy to thank for pulling me out of my mountain bike racing funk... change of scenery + racing in a relay/team format = WIN (literally & figuratively...I won back the joy I used to feel every time I finished a race). (and with a name like that, we had no choice but to crush it, right??)... I mean, "no pressure other than world domination"...that mantra kinda works. Try it. 3) Iron Hill Endurance: four hours & a hard fought 5th place finish on a challenging course showed me that I do know what I'm doing, that I can handle my bike, that I am stronger than I give myself credit for. Becky & I battled back & forth throughout the entire race, encouraging each other and trying to rip each other's legs off , all while trying to balance that tricky endurance pace...she's going to have a breakthrough season in cross, I know it. 4) Darkhorse 40 Stewart State Forest Newburgh NY (co-ed duo/ me & Bill): racing more or less against the clock/against myself for my teammate/BF/friend was a whole different challenge, one that pushed me to new level. With a strong 2nd place finish, we walked away weary & exhausted, but happy about the sweet hardware & generous cha-ching $$. Reflecting on the experience over pizza & Saison du Pont, we agreed this race should become a fixture on our calendar every year. We had an absolute blast & agreed we make a damn good team. 5) Neshaminy Classic presented by Guy's: Why did I choose to end my abbreviated whirlwind season on a course that I had always dreaded & feared? Because this summer I learned how to ride my bike faster & better... I got over my funk & I pushed myself harder. I got over my hang-ups & let myself loosen up on my bike...I trusted myself. So, I ended my "season" on a positively joyful note with my arms outstretched and a huge grin on my face... I know, I know...it is corny, but I kinda needed things to turn out this way.

Saturday, August 7, 2010

mean people do suck

but, I'll figure it out... in other news, this girl is about to have her baby. she's far away & I miss her, but I am sending her positive thoughts & virtual hugs with all my might. I have no doubt that she will kick labor's ass.

Thursday, August 5, 2010

august fifth

We are watching "It's the Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown"... my son is marveling at the aesthetic of this particular cartoon ("I love how they mixed up the colored pencil marks & magic marker style.") Oh, excuse me. Most of the newer kid stuff leaves me dizzy & nauseated (have you seen Lazy Town or Wow Wow Wubzy??)... I'm glad he can appreciate the classics (even if Halloween is months away). After being apart for three days, he came home looking like an even bigger kid. Again. Kindergarten starts soon. School bus. Backpack. Epi-pen. Ten years ago today I got married. We now share a great kid. We stayed together for seven years as husband & wife... Eighty degrees, zero humidity, blue skies...August 5, 2000. When the car pulled up to St. Agnes church, the girls got out & my dad asked if I wanted to go around the block again. I sure did. That's not a dig against my ex... It was just me being twenty-five and not sure what else to do at that given moment. So, once again, August 5th has come and (almost) gone with no fanfare whatsoever. as it should. as for the upcoming race this weekend... haven't been on a bike since the Darkhorse. the trainer doesn't count. I meant to spin out the junk in my legs & relieve this terrible cramp in my right calf. I found myself doing intervals because I was bored out of my skull. I hate that thing. Still, I want to race my bike.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

no, not jinxing anything...

It's okay to enjoy the good things that are happening & not worry or wonder when it's going to stop... because it is entirely possible that the good things can stay that way. not everything gets ruined. and I am racing my bike again this weekend.

Monday, August 2, 2010

darkorse 40 2010

Driving home from NY last night, we both remarked how it felt like we'd been away for more than 24 hours. Staying at Cynthia's place (near New Paltz) is like a little vacation... The racing was almost a bonus (until we crushed it...) Can I tell you how much fun it was to team up with Bill & want to race my freaking guts out?? I can't tell you. Words fail me after such a great weekend. And I am simply too destroyed.