Sunday, December 31, 2006

Swimming for Kristina.

Last fall, Kristina Pinto (aka The Marathon Mama) decided to run the 2007 Boston Marathon for the Dana-Farber Marathon Challenge, which raises money for basic cancer research. When I heard about Kristina's committment, it reminded me of the many cancer victims and survivors in my own family, and my failure to have committed anything at all to the cause.

So I joined Kristina's cause as a sponsor (which I encourage everyone to do as well), but I wanted to join in in a physical sense, too. I promised to swim 26.2 miles by the date of the Boston Marathon (April 16, 2007), as a way of training alongside Kristina in spirit.

That was last October. While Kristina has been training faithfully, until today, I had yet to swim a single lap. Perfect time to make a New Year's resolution, right? I decided to gain some momentum by starting a day early, and swam my first 1/4 mile today. It was mostly an exercise in locating my gym bag, swimsuit, and so on, and getting to the pool on time before it closed for the holiday evening. But I did it.

To complete my goal in time for the marathon, I'll have to average 1/4 mile a day, 7 days a week.

I've started a Google spreadsheet to track my progress. I'll post snapshots of the chart from time to time, but for now, here's a link to the live online spreadsheet: Swimming for Kristina.

(By the way, Google Spreadsheet is ridiculously easy to use.)

Sunday, December 24, 2006

Shopping done

Well, sort of. I took this picture the night I thought I had finished my shopping. I even bought myself a box of on-sale chocolates in the last store I was in (Bloomie's, buying Sexual eau de cologne for my father) to celebrate. On Christmas Eve morning, when I blissfully started my wrapping, loving the fact that Christmas Eve was a Saturday and I didn't have to go to work, I found that I was short one gift to wrap. I had ordered wooden dollhouses for my two young nieces. But when I opened the shipping carton, I found only one dollhouse.

Oh. No. I had to go out on Christmas Eve -- the one day I wanted to avoid having to go out. I had even made sure the house was stocked with cellophane tape, tissues, ham, and eggs by 12/22, just to make sure I would have no reason to leave the house on 12/24. Now here I was on Christmas Eve with two of my most important presents unbought.

Thankfully, a local children's gift shop offered cool crafty gifts, and I was the only customer there. I can give the dollhouses another time. (But after I recover my 2-day shipping on the messed-up order!)

To paraphrase Robert Burns..."the best-laid plans of mice and men." But when I nibbled these chocolates and took this picture, I experienced the satisfaction of shopping done early, which meant I was able to deal with disaster when it occurred.

Friday, December 01, 2006

Infestation continues.

There were 15 moths again last night. So far that's the record. If it goes up to 16, I'm going to take another picture. (I wish I knew how to minimize the glare from the flash.)

My voice teacher pointed out why the moths are acting strangely: They're not supposed to be alive this long, and they don't quite know what to do with themselves. They're in a kind of dormant state. They're still alive because it's been unusually warm this fall. It hasn't gotten cold enough to kill the moths.

To my surprise, she laughed uproariously when I told her I had 15 moths on my kitchen window. "You COUNTED them??!!!???"

And my husband is teasing me about taking pictures of them. Every night when he sees me counting them he says, "Don't forget to take a picture."

OK, so I'm wierd.

But not as weird as some of the things I've seen my neighbors wrap around their trees, presumably to prevent the caterpillars from climbing up and going into their cocoons and becoming moths. Maybe I should take some pictures of thoseso I won't feel so bad.