Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Where is winter, already?

Someone brought up the fact that "...and wasn't I training for a race, anyway?" today when adding some skinny ski time to our upcoming adventure.

HA! Training? For a ski race? Well yes, that would be true except THERE IS NO SNOW to play in.

So I've been torturing myself with youTube, in the meantime. Here's a little blurb about an under-hyped mountain that gets loads of snow every year.

Friday, December 23, 2011


A Day In the Park. from renan ozturk on Vimeo.

"The important thing is not why we do it, it is THAT we do it."

Thursday, December 22, 2011


MADE IN ICELAND from Klara Harden on Vimeo.

Soundtrack to my soul. Scenery of my daydreams.

Monday, December 5, 2011

Not something to workout to

But good for drowning out the distractions on a productive Monday night. My backside says "no" to the bike tonight. So I'm making myself useful in front of the computer. Conquering my little corner of the world, one email at a time. Is it Friday yet?

Blind Pilot :: 'New York' via @liveset from Blind Pilot on Vimeo.

Sunday, December 4, 2011

Checking In

Hey...guess who's been running? and riding her bike? and doing yoga?

FOR REAL. Its like a motivation miracle. Big, unrealistic race goals will do that to a person. But that's how I roll. I don't mess around with the reasonable. I go big.

Turkey day was my big, frantic holiday this year so there's not much standing in between me and Birkie except SNOW.

Snow dancing counts as a workout, right?

That's it. That's all I've got. Yoga is calling from my living room. Peace out.

Tuesday, November 8, 2011

Here. Now. Looking forward.

I am trying. Trying. To live in the moment. To be here. Just here. Right now. Looking forward. 

But I can't deny the fact that there's something in the air lately that catches me off-guard, a slight breeze of restlessness that wears on the sandstone arches of my heart with surreptitious persistence. 

What to do about that? What to do? 

Sunday, November 6, 2011


Have you seen this video yet?  Such a beautiful chance encounter with nature, simultaneously simple and breathtakingly complex. Her expression at the end is the best. The amazement. The speechless moment where you try to grasp what just happened.

True to my analytical nature, I just can't help but think that somehow there is lots and lots of math behind it all. That if you could find the algorithm for that, maybe we would have found the solution for world peace.

I knew I should have paid more attention in calculus.

But my mind was most likely out in the canoe.
Consumed with the wonder of it all.

Murmuration from Sophie Windsor Clive on Vimeo.

Sunday, October 23, 2011

Brunch, insanity and champagne.

So ya, its been a while. But blogging hasn't been at the top of my life's agenda lately. Because, you see, I moved. Again. So that's what, FOUR times in the past two years? Who can keep track? And while this move doesn't include new alpine vistas, it does come with a bit of increased elevation, and a HUGE kitchen. Which I put to use this morning. I think every new living space should be christened with Hollandaise sauce and waffles, don't you?

And nothing will boost your confidence like conquering the Hollandaise sauce. Seriously. I'm ready to conquer the world. Right after this champagne induced nap, that is.

If you're curious, the Waffle of Insane Greatness is, indeed, insanely great. And INSANE is what I have possibly become. Because in between moving all my worldly possessions and being out of town two of the last four weekends, guess what I did. I went and registered for an insanely long Nordic ski race. One that generally happens during an insanely cold day in February.

That's right, this winter I'll be getting back to my Nordic roots with 9,000 other crazies at the American Birkebeiner.

And you know what's really insane? I'm actually excited about it. An endurance event that I might enjoy training for? Whoa.

So things are a happening around here. New scenery, new energy. Funny how the lack of blogging usually means there's lots happening to blog about. So if I'm not hanging around the blog much this winter you can find me on a groomed trail somewhere, probably by headlamp, burning off all the Hollandaise sauce.

Yay, winter!

Monday, August 29, 2011

Can't talk about running if you're not

So let's change the subject, shall we...music? Yes? OK. I am completely obsessed with The Civil Wars lately. Obsessed. If only I could be so obsessed about, oh, I don't know....RUNNING?!

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Ya, never.

Places I will NEVER be: http://blog.whereisthecool.com/post/6090840075

I will probably have nightmares about this picture. Nightmares.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Visual Deliciousness, etc.

BON IVER "Holocene" from nabil elderkin on Vimeo.

Stuff like this leaves me spellbound. It courts my inner wanderlust in ways that would lead to shotgun weddings in the physical world. It lures the dreamer in me out from under the capture of a heavily scheduled work week and lets her dance atop the netting like a fallen tightrope walker happy to be free of the pressure.

Happy Friday!

Monday, August 15, 2011

Its a long road home....

...literally. I'm actually excited to be in one place for a bit. Until the next trip, enjoy a bit of someone else's:

MOVE from Rick Mereki on Vimeo.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

I mean, what's a sister for if not enabling?

I was kinda crabby today. OK, I was really crabby today. I'm busy. And tired. And its mostly good-busy, or at least self-induced busy so I really shouldn't complain. And I don't. Much. But that doesn't mean I'm not a little crabby.

So how does one remedy crabby?

Crepes. Duh.  A raspberry and Nutella crepe, to be exact. For lunch. Ya, that's right. My lunch came with whipped cream. And I was really, really OK with that fact. I was just digging in, to both the crepe and a little freelance work, when I noticed the pleasant woman next to me. She has just just received her crepe. Hers was of the smoked trout variety.

No whipped cream in sight.

I type furiously:

To: sister
From: crabby fatty
Re: of course
I sit down to eat my raspberry Nutella crepe (comes with whipped cream for cryin' out loud) for lunch and the girl next to me gets smoked trout savory crepe. It even has spinach and s@#$. I am trying to be impenetrable to the unintentional guilt vibe she is putting off.

Response follows immediately...

To: Me
From: Awesome sister
Raspberries and chocolate are chock-full of antioxidants! Hazelnuts have protein! Calcium! Who wants a savory crepe anyway? It's like, against the laws of nature.

And THAT is why I keep her around (and excuse her occasional excessive use of exclamation points -- I mean, clearly they were necessary here).

Thursday, July 7, 2011

Absolutely nothing to do with triathlon, which is absolutely nothing new


Well, its kinda sorta related. There are bikes.

At the risk of totally poaching some one's Tumblr feed I should say I first saw this HERE. It's actually where I've found a few of the music bits I've posted recently. I've become somewhat obsessed with her blog...err Tumblr...or, whatever...I don't quite understand Tumblr to be honest. I mean, why is it missing a vowel? I don't get it. And when I click on things I think will be source links they take me to lists of other people who like the post....so is it a blog? Is it Pinterest? Is it their love-child? Ah, well. These are things to ponder on cold, mid western winter nights after I have tired of euchre and Aquavit. Certainly not in the middle of a perfectly lovely summer. My brain cells are much better used plotting birthday adventures and more epic road trips....you know, the logistics of squeezing the most life possible out of these sweet months between the annual ice ages.

So far I'm doing pretty well. Life is good. It would be better if I would ride my bike now and then. But, you know, things can't always be perfection. So I'll just have to settle for really, really awesome.

Friday, July 1, 2011

Back and Forth But Moving Forward

The last six weeks: An unknown street in Florence. A hot spring in the San Juans. An auditorium full of inspiration in an mountain town. A courtyard full of sunshine. A deck with a view and good friends. Airports. Happy hours. Happy evenings. Friends who'll dance when no one else is. Starry skies and silhouetted moonlit peaks. Campfires. I-80. Endearing texts. Epic drives.

The places I glimpse my soul are limitless in geography and almost always in the transition. How lucky I am for the luxury to continue to chase it.

Monday, June 20, 2011

There are good things to come...

...from Mumford & Sons. I have seen it with my own two eyes...standing in the freezing rain surrounded by dedicated festivarians, snow falling on the mountains around us. 'Twas a beautiful scene. What a weekend. I couldn't find videos from this particular weekend up yet, but here is a taste (These people are much warmer than us...I couldn't stop shivering for hours after the show yesterday. Hours. Worth it? Without a doubt.):

Tuesday, June 14, 2011

Who's going to the mountains this weekend?!

----->this girl<----- I'm pretty ready to get this party started. Here's a taste of what I'm in for.... are these guys adorable (and amazing) or what?!

and another Mumford show in the box canyon?! Yes please!

Add to this list The Decemberists, Robert Plant, Punch Brothers, Abigail Washburn, Sam Bush, Old Crow Medicine Show, Jerry Douglas...I could go on. Throw in some of the most amazing people I'm lucky enough to call friends and its no wonder I can't wait to get on the road Thursday.

Now I just have to conquer packing... and Nebraska.

Monday, June 13, 2011

Mellow Monday Music

So much life to live. No time to waste this week. Happy Monday!

Sunday, June 12, 2011

Is it ski season yet?

I know, I can't believe I'm saying that. It's barely summer. But watch this and tell me it doesn't make you wish you plucking ski gear off the heater (or the floor, if you're one to take the apres to extreme) and dragging aching quads out for another day on the slopes.

All.I.Can. Official Teaser from Sherpas Cinema on Vimeo.

Friday, June 3, 2011

summer, please linger

I stood on the sidewalk today and soaked myself in the hot sun and heavy, humid wind. I have waited months for this moment -- many long, mountain-less winter months. I will savor summer this year. Every glorious, glistening drop. I will trust those moments, if nothing else. The here. The now. The hazy, humid lingering moments of a season that pulls at humanity to slow and savor. Look up, smile. Breathe. Lounge. Nourish. Play. Grow.

Sunday, May 8, 2011

I'm Being Stalked

So guess who's been feeling sorry for her busy little self lately and skipping the gym because "oh, I just have so much to do I couldn't possibly take 90 minutes out for a yoga class.....or even 45 whole minutes for a run. No, no. Way too much to do for that."

Ha. Ya, well lessons in life; YOU SHOULD ALWAYS TAKE THAT HOUR FOR YOURSELF. Always. Go for a run. There are so many reasons. Those precious minutes not spent in front of a computer will keep you sane. They will probably even make you more productive because a tired brain can only focus on the task at hand and not the three hundred million other things you think you need to be thinking about too (most of which are actually counterproductive anyway).

Sorry, did it sound like I was preaching there. I mean no offense. I'm preaching to myself. I'm saying "Yes, universe, I hear you." Because what did I see when I landed in Italy? A FINISH LINE. A freaking marathon finish line. Just to torture me with thoughts of what could have happened had I maybe been in shape?! Ah, well, good thing we were headed to a different town for the weekend so I wouldn't have to be surrounded by hoards of marathon finishers constantly reminding me how lazy my last six months have been.

And then, what do I find in Milan this weekend? ANOTHER FINISH LINE.

Running is stalking me. Lurking. Torturing me with guilt.

So don't be like me. Go for a run. No one wants a stalker.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

It does not interest me

I have a habit of emailing things to myself when I find them interesting. All those little internal memos really clutter up an inbox, so every now and then I find myself cleaning out what my brain just couldn't let live happily out there on the Internet, but instead dragged home to mama-inbox like an abandoned puppy saying "can we keep it?"

I was in the middle of one such purge session when I came across this quote...

“It doesn’t interest me what you do for a living. I want to know what you ache for. It doesn’t interest me how old you are, I want to know if you will risk looking like a fool for love, for your dreams, for the adventure of being alive. I want to know if you can live with failure, yours and mine and still shout at the edges of a lake, river or mountain yes! It doesn’t interest me where you live or how much money you have. I want to know if you can get up after a night of grief and despair, weary and bruised to the bone and do what needs to be done for someone you love. I want to know if you can be alone with yourself and truly like the company you keep in the empty moments in your life. Live more than your neighbors, unleash yourself upon the world and go places. Understand that this is not a dress rehearsal, this is it, your life. Face your fears and live your dreams, take it all in, yes, every chance you get, come close; and yes, by all means what ever you do, get it on film.” – John Blais

Wonderful words for this rainy, contemplative day. This is most certainly not a dress rehearsal. This is it. This is your life.

Saturday, April 23, 2011

Anything she can do....

Me: Think I can pack for a 12-day international trip with no checked luggage?

My mom: Your sister could.

Me: I'll take that as a challenge.

Sibling rivalry is forever, apparently. Although I'm not sure this is a fair (self-imposed) competition considering she is not a runner or a photographer. Gear for those two activities alone is half a carry-on roller bag.

But its good to have goals.

Tuesday, April 19, 2011

When you can't go to the mountain

....you can find it on the internet.
Its a big beautiful world out there, enjoy it. Dream big.

The Mountain from Terje Sorgjerd on Vimeo.

Sunday, April 17, 2011


And then all my breaths were lulled from my lungs to dance in the wide open spaces....

Sunday, April 3, 2011

Cleanse Day 4

I really thought this post would be about poop. Don't lie. You did too.

You probably thought there would be a lot of poop talk this week. But sadly, the most remarkable events of the past few days have mostly just been the near-fatal flatulence. My apologies to anyone who found themselves in the unfortunate predicament of being in a remotely shared space with me recently. Don't blame me, blame the fiber.

This "cleanse" requires popping an obscene amount of pills, morning and night, who's main purpose seems to be to make me bloated and gassy. The only reason I find myself running to the bathroom with any urgency is because all the water necessary to consume said pills needs to be released.

So at least there's been a little excitement.

But in all seriousness, I'm not sure what this cleanse was really supposed to do. It didn't require any dietary restrictions (so, of course, I didn't implement any). So its just been life as usual. Plus pills. And fiber. And, well, room-clearing gas.

But its only day four. So maybe this is all just a sign that things are getting going.

Which is good. Things are getting going in other parts of my life too. I'm going refrain from too many correlations between my bowel movements and my life, but I do think there's some connection. Just pick up a book or two on feng shui. Its not just all about moving your furniture.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Still kickin'

**while you're waiting for the inevitable poo-posts to come, here is a little ditty I wrote over a week ago but didn't have a chance to publish before my social life came calling that Friday**

Went to the gym. Yup. The gym. Apparently no one goes to the gym on Friday night because the place was a blissful ghost town.

Spent an hour on the "dread"mill flipping between current world affairs and The Housewives of Orange County. Found both equally depressing. Pondered what would happen if they made the housewives talk politics. Was amused by that idea for about five seconds, then decided that was actually pretty depressing too.

So, you know. Life just keeps kickin' along. Ho-hum.

Spring is trying to "sprung" itself here in the midwest (hopefully) and holy crap do we need it. OK, I need it. I don't even care that I might not get another ski day this winter THAT is how much I need more daylight hours and open-toe shoes. (Though I'd be lying if I said I wasn't trying to squeeze a few more ski days out of the winter. I've got free lift tickets to use for cryin' out loud. FREE LIFT TICKETS.)


I actually went for a run outside after work this week and it wasn't a miserable cold slog in the dark. In fact, it was quite pleasant.

Yes. I need spring.  I need to see flowers powering up out of the cold, barren earth. I need a reminder that out of the abyss of winter there can be life again. I need to know that things you thought were dead can come back stronger and more beautiful than you even remembered them to be in the past.

I need to ride my bike.

Spring Cleaning

You know there will be something to say about this. Like, daily. For the next 14 days.

Also, I'm going to a group fitness class at the gym tomorrow. Me. Group fitness. And as if that wasn't bad enough. I'll be on day one of cleansing.

Stay tuned.

Saturday, March 26, 2011

When did this become a music blog?

Oh, maybe when I stopped being able to actually finish a blog post.  I have only lame excuses.  Laziness.  Winter doldrums. Busy-ness. Not-working-out-ness. You know, the usual.

But hey guess what? A new song to add my under-used workout mix. Yay. Something to get excited about. And distract me from finishing one of the twenty-seven or so little posts I've started but not quite been able to wrap up and publish.

In the meantime. Enjoy the music. Think of summer. Its coming. Eventually.

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

A Good Day To Be (fake) Catholic

Religious affiliations aside, 40 days seems like a very reasonable, yet challenging, period of time for a little challenge of sorts....don't you think?

I do. I'll jump on that Catholic bandwagon for the next few weeks.

Except I can't quite nail down a challenge.  I am considering forcing myself to do a pre-determined amount of weekly morning workouts.  But lemmetellyou, fasting for 40 days in the desert seems like a lot more fun than getting up at 5AM to go for a run.  Which I guess is the point.

So morning workouts it is. Which will be replaced by just regular-old-after-work-workouts if, you know, I still suck at mornings.  Point is, there needs to be workouts.  Because I have this big five mile race to train for.  Did you hear that?  FIVE WHOLE MILES OF RUNNING.  OMG.  Sorry but its laughable that I will consider this five mile race an accomplishment.  But that is where I am.  And it must be dealt with.

Quite frankly, this is what I need to kick start all the other little things that need to change in my life at the moment. Its true. Working out does this. Its like magic fertilizer beans for the saggy, droopy beanstalk that you've been neglecting in the backyard, Jack. (or in this case, "magic easter jelly beans")

So nighty-night kids. This little princess needs her beauty rest lest I be a raging witch in the wee hours of the morning tomorrow. Or...wait....that raging witch part is probably inevitable. But I should get some sleep anyway....so I'm not a TIRED raging witch.

Happy Ash Wednesday. (Is it Easter yet?)

Saturday, February 26, 2011

a winding road

One of these days, I might actually write something. There is much to say. But for now, there is this. Amos Lee (swoon) and this beautiful song.

Its a winding road, when you're in the lost and found.....got a gypsy soul and I was born for leaving....

Saturday, February 12, 2011

The Dog Days

You should add this to your workout queue. Immediately. That is, if you're working out. In which case, kudos to you. I'm NOT. I just went to Disney World and ate and drank my way around central Florida for a few days. Then I spent the remainder of the week hunkered down inside my full length down jacket (Be jealous. That thing is awesome.) because it was too cold for penguins around here. So needless to say I didn't drag myself to the gym. But I did see my first Cirque du Soleil in Orlando. And nothing will motivate you to attempt athletic endeavors like watching an entire troupe of perfectly toned gymnasts bounce around stage for an hour or so. Wow.

Tomorrow will by my first time out on Nordic skis this year. So that might be kinda like acrobatics.

Tuesday, January 18, 2011

Words, as gifts

You know that you're a lucky girl when you send a friend a somewhat generic answer to her text message, she reads what wasn't written and sends you this;

will not die an unlived life.
I will not live in fear
of falling or catching fire.
I choose to inhabit my days,
to allow my living to open me,
to make me less afraid,
more accessible,
to loosen my heart
until it becomes a wing,
a torch, a promise.
I choose to risk my significance;
to live so that which came to me as seed
goes to the next as blossom
and that which came to me as blossom,
goes on as fruit.
fully alive - dawna markova
Words are such a powerful gift.  And the friends that know how to give them, the right words at the perfect time, those kinds of friends are the best kind.

Sunday, January 16, 2011

Balance and Strength

Against everything I believe to be holy and good in the universe, I finally resigned myself to the fact that it was time for a gym membership.  Off I went, innocent friend in tow, to fall prey to the "its that time of year" high-pressure sales pitch.  Seriously.  This woman was intense.  Clearly someone is paying her by the number of mortal, slacker souls she can get to sign contracts with the big, corporate, workout devil.

Luckily, we had done our research ahead of time and knew that this particular stink-cave of torture was the right one for us, so sign on the dotted line we did.  Through some maneuvering we were able to sign for just six months at a rate that's really no more than we were already spending at the bar on those "OMG, I need a drink" post-work attempts at stress relief.

When you look at it that way, we're coming out ahead.  Less money spent.  Calories burned instead of ingested.  And arguably cuter butts and improved outlooks on life.

Ok, that last one might be a stretch.  But a girl can dream.

Let it be known, I'm not completely anti-gym.  I think they're great.  For some people.  I've just found that I'm not one of those people.  I have to drag myself there kicking and screaming.  One hour inside those confining and odor-filled walls feels like an eternity.  Alternatively, grabbing a friend to go play outside (even, or especially, when "play" means a couple thousand feet of uphill hiking in adverse conditions) can make the hours just fly by.

The saving grace of my new indoor playground is yoga.  Out of all the options available, joining this gym was the most economical way to have access to fitness options AND yoga.  In the last year I have really started to embrace yoga, and without the topographically challenging landscape that was once just out my front door, yoga seems to be the best way to maintain the balance and core strength that walking on uneven terrain used to provide.

As is evidenced by the unique soreness I'm feeling this morning after last night's class.

Oh yoga, I always underestimate you.  I mentally prepare for a relaxing hour of stretching and meditation and then am brutally (yet blissfully) reminded of the unique way you challenge me when halfway through class I am being asked to hold body parts in ways that are unexplainably impossible.  I mean, its my own leg?  Why is it so hard to hold it in the air like that?  Its not a two-hundred pound block of cement?  Its my leg.  I move it every day to get from place to place.

And so a new year begins, with a search for new paths to balance, strength, and growth.  And renewed hope for a beautiful journey filled with new adventures.