Sunday, December 12, 2010

O, Christmas tree

Every morning when I get my baby girl from her bed and we go out to the living room, she says, "Oh! Christmas tree, Mama!"

And every morning then, I plug in the three strands of lights and light up that big tree we chose ourselves.

We got the tree last weekend from a tree farm called Santa's Woods. It was low-key and awesome, though bitterly cold.

We took a tractor-pulled hayrack ride out to the trees and then another smaller one pulled by two Clydesdales out to more trees. We chose as quickly as possible, mainly because it was so cold. I'd bundled Paige up in layers and joked that she was like the little boy in "A Christmas Story" who can't put his arms down.

It must not have been enough, though, because she still started crying from cold out in the field.

We sat by a campfire for a few minutes after choosing the tree and got mini candy canes from a friendly Santa.

They strapped the tree to the top of my car for us and away we went. Rye and I decorated it the next day, while Paige took her nap.

The best part is how much my kids love this Christmas tree. It's already got me worried about how I'll soothe their sadness in a few more weeks when it's time to throw the tree out.

Oh well. Until then, we're enjoying it to the fullest.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

I ran 7 miles through the November cold WHY?

This is why:

This was me at the end, fingers frozen like Popsicles, feet numb like nubs.


You can see it, right? That smile is the look of accomplishment, of "Holy hell, I just did that. And I did FINE!"

The idea of running Living History Farms each year scares me to death. Seven miles of running, NINE creeks to cross. Many hills to climb. Lots of mud. 8,000 other runners - many in costume and whooping and hollering.

This was the second time I've run it.

I enjoyed this time more than the first, I think. It felt, somehow, easier. Somehow, I was tired at the end but not at exhaustion. Never did I think, "I can't finish."

Instead, I dove straight into that frigid water up to my thighs at some points and trudged across those creeks. I let complete strangers help me up the muddy embankments a couple times.

I did it.

Just do it - the Nike slogan - used to be one of my mantras during my jock-ish years of jr. high and high school.

I think it's one we can live by our whole lives.

Check out these legs:

Now, who wants to run with me next year?