Sunday, October 24, 2010



Wouldn't it be fun to be tiny (as in my favorite third grade book: The Littles Take a Trip) and then discover a child's bedroom filled with hotwheels and tracks! Ohhhh to be able to race along the actual hot wheel tracks and sit in the plastic toy bleachers as a Little.

I spoke about this a few posts ago, but incase you missed it... when I was a child, I believed that Little People might really exist. I hoped they did. I wanted a little family to take care of. To carry them in my pocket when I went off to school. Feed them crumbs from the dinner table and give them a ball of cotton to sleep on at night.

Somewhat similliar to my "transportation piece: TotTown" Here is such a land for the Littles...

Sunday, October 17, 2010

Irena Sendler

There recently was a death of a 98 year-old lady named Irena.

During WWII, Irena got permission to work in the Warsaw ghetto, as a Plumbing/Sewer specialist.

She had an ulterior motive.

She KNEW what the Nazi's plans were for the Jews (being German).

Irena smuggled infants out in the bottom of the tool box she carried and she carried in the back of her truck a burlap sack, (for larger kids). She also had a dog in the back that she trained to bark when the Nazi soldiers let her in and out of the ghetto.

The soldiers of course wanted nothing to do with the dog and the barking covered the kids/infants noises.

During her time of doing this, she managed to smuggle out and save 2500 kids/infants.

She was caught, and the Nazi's broke both her legs, arms and beat her severely.

Irena kept a record of the names of all the kids she smuggled out and kept them in a glass jar, buried under a tree in her back yard.

After the war, she tried to locate any parents that may have survived it and reunited the family. Most had been gassed.

Those kids she helped got placed into foster family homes or adopted.

Last year Irena was up for the Nobel Peace Prize.

She was not selected.

Al Gore won --- for a slide show on Global Warming.

You can read more about her here.

Friday, October 15, 2010

Wine Country Half Marathon in Healdsburg 10-10-10

This photo is mostly of my running group where I was the pace leader.

I did it!

And it was a total blast!

I started out running in what people call a negative split. I didn't really plan it that way. It just happened.

Running in a negative split, is running the race quicker the second half of the race than at the beginning. The idea behind this is to start out slower so you can store up energy at the end of the race when you really need it.

And not to mention, the mental aspect it creates, passing runners one by one at Mile 12 was so rewarding. Even though it was a bit hard running the last few miles uphill, it felt a whole lot worse for the people I was passing.

I kept looking down at the tops of my shoes while I ran. Looking at the ground from that perspective, made it appear more level ground than it actually was.

I started my faster pace just after
passing the mile 6 marker. By then, my ankles were feeling great and I was pain free.

Oh wait! I'm getting ahead of myself.

Let me start at the beginning.

It was a gorgeous day. Absolutely beautiful. Although the temps soared into the low 100s by the time the day was through, at the beginning of the race the temperature was probably in the low 60s and just perfect for running.

I had so many mixed feelings before starting the race. Felt so unsure of myself. After training for this race, using the one minute run/one minute walk method, I worried I wouldn't run as fast as my last Half. I worried I didn't have the stamina to run for any long length of time.

Finally I just let it all go. I had to. I decided it was going to be my FUN RUN.

And it was a fun run.

Just not at the beginning.

The first three miles, my ankles killed me. Both were so painful, all I wanted to do was to cut them both off and throw them to the curb. But, instead, I kept pushing through, knowing either the pain would let up or I would have to endure ten more miles of a painful run.

I'm so glad I pushed myself and ran a slower but even pace at the beginning because by mile 6, I saw a few downhills and I was ready to take advantage of them and kept a steady faster pace the rest of the race.

I finished my race a minute and a half faster than my last Half. Plus I finished second in my running group, five minutes ahead of the next runners to finish from our pace group. And I felt great! Finished my race, sprinting to the finish and felt good the whole rest of the day!

I finished it at 9:42 on 10-10-10. It was a 10.9 minute pace overall, finishing it in two hours, twelve minutes.

Friday, October 8, 2010

IF: Transportation

When I was a kid, I read the book The Littles Take a Trip and totally fell in love with it and in the idea of little people! I imagined there were entire cities all around me that were so tiny that I could not possibly see them with my human-sized eyes!

I would even leave out my matchbox cars and hot wheels for them at night ... just incase....

This transportation scene I designed for Michael Miller Fabrics is called Tot Town.

Thursday, October 7, 2010

Trail Running

Trail running is a blast!
Sometimes you run all the way and sometimes you fall!

I've been running up at Annadel State Park a couple times a week lately. It's gorgeous up there. I can't believe this beautiful place is so close to my home and yet I only experienced it for the first time less than a year ago. It's so incredible running past deer, cyotes, wild turkeys, jack rabbits... I even saw a baby mountain lion along my path. (Not anxious to see another anytime soon).

I have lately introduced a few running friends to this beautiful place and it's so much fun waking up early on Saturday mornings and running with them up in the hills by 7 am.

It's getting darker in the evenings and our evening runs after work are limited.

My sister Kelly and I ran last week and the sun went down before we got off the hill. Squinting into the blackness, I slipped and fell backwards against the steep hill and within thirty seconds, i had a hematoma the size of a ping-pong ball.

I went to the doctor a couple days later to make sure it wasn't fractured because someone suggested it looked like a fractured elbow. But luckily for me, the doctor said it was just a bad bruise.

So here it is Thursday night and my half-marathon race is on Sunday morning.

I have really been feeling nervous about it this past month.

Fumbling around with all these fidgety thoughts: "I'm gonna be so slow..." and "why didn't I run more these last couple of months!?!?"

But tonight my thoughts have turned the tide. And now I'm feeling happy thoughts of excitement! And I'm just gonna run and not really worry what happens. I'm just gonna get out there and have a blast! Because, truly, that is why I started to run in the first place.

To have fun!

Early Sunday morning, I will awake and lather the few trouble toes on my left foot in vaseline, put on my latest favorite running shirt and eat my banana and peanut butter toast (or two) and run like the runner I see myself in my dreams.

I'm thinking only positive thoughts for now on out.

"I can do it! I am going to run strong. I am going to have a great race day!"

Oh, thank heavens for my imagination. My optimism. And the way I love to play pretend.

It truly does ...and will... carry me onto victory.