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Living My Dream - Part 2

Saturday, June 26, 2010

A few days ago, I blogged about the first half of my super fabulous holiday. First half recap: did the San Diego 1/2, visited friends in L.A. before making my way up to Idaho to meet Sparkfriend Ems. Completed the Teton Dam 1/2, receiving both a medal and a rhubarb crumble, then enjoyed an amazing day in Yellowstone National Park.

Here's the second half:

My visit with Ems whizzed by and it was time to go before I knew it. From Idaho Falls, I flew to Seattle to visit a non-Spark friend. (I know! Who knew they even existed?) From Seattle, we moseyed our way up to Olympic National Park for a couple of days, including FORKS and LA PUSH! Yes, all my vampire loving, werewolf adoring friends, we were in "the Twilight Zone"!

I didn't see Edward, but I did bump into Alice. emoticon

I honestly didn't expect to have nearly as much fun as I did. One woman told me that this little town of just over 3000 people had more than 70,000 visitors last year! Most of the folks couldn't have been friendlier. We treated ourselves to the suite in the Forks Motel, and when the weather predictably turned to rain, we put our swimsuits to good use in the suite hot tub, watching "New Moon" on my computer. LOL

My friend checks out Sparkpeople.

From the Pacific Northwest, I traveled to Winnipeg, Manitoba. Severe storms delayed me a few hours, but Sparkfriends AMUNET_RA (Bonnie) and DERBO (Derek) were at the airport to greet me when I finally made it. Wow! These two really know how to show a girl a good time! They spoiled me rotten! I was greatly amused to see that Manitoba license plates say "Friendly Manitoba" because both Bonnie and Derek repeatedly warned me about how people smashed car windows to steal and then damaged the cars if they didn't like their loot, and so on. Meanwhile, I just kept meeting the nicest people everywhere we went.

Continuing my racing streak, I attempted to complete the Manitoba Half Marathon for three races in three weeks. I still had a nasty chest cold, so I wasn't 100% sure I wanted to race. However, knowing that CJBAGGINS had signed up for the fun run made me decide to go for it.

On race morning, I was sitting on the ground, taping my knees, when I heard a voice from behind me call my name. I turned around -- and there was CJ! How she recognised me from behind remains a frightening mystery, but she did. She was all smiles as she introduced me to her DH and cute kids. The Bagginses were out in force to support CJ and her daughter, who were both racing.

with CJ

CJ and I chatted until I had to line up, and it took my mind off all the things I normally stress about. I should take her to all my races!

The forecast had called for cold, overcast, and chance of thunder. Nope, nope, and nope. I hope these weather service guys aren't also giving lottery numbers and stock tips! Unfortunately, the organisers decided to pace the race at a quick 14-minute mile based on the fastest runners, not the slowest. The result? They "closed" the first mile before I'd even crossed the start line! This meant that as I worked my way through the course, the medical, food, and drink stops were closing before I was anywhere near. Why in such a hurry? Dunno. Maybe these were the people Derek was talking about, and they were late for their car window smashing. emoticon In any event, it was a stupid plan, and I hope they will revisit it in the future, as some runners had no support during their races. I didn't have any official support until the ninth mile, when the 1/2 rejoined the full, and I was ahead of the (marathon) pace.

However, for the first time in all my races, I had "peeps" and WOW! It makes SUCH a difference! Bonnie and Derek had very kindly driven me to the race starting area. I assumed that they would go home and back to sleep. No! I was plodding along in mile 6 when Bonnie and Derek just appeared with a cold sports drink for me. It was great to see them and know that they were pulling for me to do well. In mile 10, I heard my name and saw the Baggins clan lined up along the curb, all cheering. I thought it was incredibly sweet, given that CJ's race ended a couple of hours earlier. Bonnie and Derek met me again in mile 12, and again at the finish line. Usually, there's at least a couple of "dark miles" in a race, when I want to quit and ask myself why I'm holding myself up to such ridicule. I never experienced that in this race, and I think "my team" made all the difference. Thanks again, guys! You are stars!!!

What the official course lacked in the way of support, the locals made up for in encouragement and good cheer. Much of the race was in residential areas, and local people offered water, turned their sprinklers on us, offered us "showers" from their hoses, and made homemade music. Some people banged on household items; others pulled together an impressive and bewildering array of random instruments. My favourite "band" consisted of three accordions and a saxophone. Play that funky music!

Bonnie at our celebratory lunch

Once again, I found myself having to leave way too soon, as I enjoyed my Manitoba sparkfriends immensely. Finally, I was off to Philadelphia to see my mother, who has remarried and now lives in the Exton area. It was a wonderful visit, until Philly was pounded by an intense storm and her home was hit by a mini-tornado. The winds were 70 mph, trees got tossed around, and a huge old tree smashed her roof beams and made an unplanned "skylight" in her roof. They still have no power, and Philly's suffering a heatwave. I feel terrible for them. They worked hard to make it a nice visit for me, but their minds were on their situation. I'm glad they're ok and hope they can get something on the roof before the next wave of storms forecast batter them some more.

I'm currently in the airport, on my way home. It's been an amazing holiday full of little adventures, and a real thrill to meet my Sparkfriends in person!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NIGHTSKYSTAR 8/26/2010 1:14PM

    ok i want to know how i missed this...but i'm here now!! sounds wonderful..thank you for giving all us "cant go anywheres" a taste of the wonderful world out there!!

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L*I*T*A* 7/31/2010 4:19PM

    what an inspiration you are to us all...........
congratulations on your success........
blessings and hugs.....lita

emoticon emoticon emoticon

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GINGER_LOSTALOT 7/27/2010 11:10PM

    I apologize for not reading this sooner! Great pictures! Thank you for sharing your exciting times! I am inspired by your tenacity! emoticon

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    Your vacation sounded wonderful other than the mini tornado.

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DDUNKIES 7/6/2010 11:35PM

    ok- first and foremost i am TOTALLY JEALOUS of you going to Forks!!! how FANTASTIC for you- and i am so glad Alice was there to greet you-(sorry you weren't able to see Edward but he was with me ) secondly, why didn't you come to Boston and visit me?!!!? seriously, what a wonderful vacation- loved the blog - love ya donna

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SLCOLMAN 7/6/2010 10:13PM

    What an amazing trip :) So glad to hear that you did it!!!

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DEBULACLARK 7/6/2010 12:54AM

    Sounds like you had a great time Cat!!

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DANIMITE2 7/5/2010 2:49PM

    Did you mention the EARTHQUAKES in either of your blogs?

I'm so proud of your hard work. I know that none of it was truly easy, but I love the way you push your body to its limits. The Goofy is just a few months away...can't wait to see you!!!

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SUETINGE 7/1/2010 7:32PM

    Wow, Cat. What an amazing trip. 3 1/2-marathons and getting to meet all those wonderful Spark friends.

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WILDRICE99 6/30/2010 9:39PM

    Awesome Cat! Thanks for sharing. I truly believe that we all do better knowing that people are cheering for us.

Keep up the good work!!!

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ZIRCADIA 6/29/2010 1:00PM

    RACING MANIAC!!!! :D THAT IS AWESOME!!! And I think it's so cool that you went to Forks and La Push! :D Love the signs!

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NEWSTART127 6/27/2010 11:56PM

    Three 1/2 marathons while on "vacation" - OMG, you are totally my hero!
I am so glad that you had such an adventure. I hope that your mom's able to get the storm damaged fixed and that things get better for them quickly - scary!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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MBUICE 6/27/2010 9:49PM

    Awesome blog Cat, I really felt like I was there with you! Maybe someday you can come down south and Tina and I can show you some southern hospitality, although summer is the WRONG time to run in Texas.

So glad you had a good time, you totally deserve it!

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COLEISMYSOUL 6/27/2010 11:32AM

    You rock. I love to read about your adventures and it keeps me going! Hope you are well!

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BRAVAH 6/27/2010 8:11AM

    Hi Cat!

It sounds like you had an incredible trip!!! (Minus the roof fiasco). I am so happy that you were able to complete all three races and to meet so many sparkers and other friends! Awesome!


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AIDELADE27 6/27/2010 12:04AM

    I had no idea that you had such a trip! And those Forks pictures were to DIE for!!! i have to apologize for my city (Philly) for not treating you so well. And some of us have to live there, lol! I'm so glad you had a nice time!

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DISPATCH91 6/26/2010 11:28PM

    I am so glad you are having such a blast. So glad the computer didn't fall in that tub. Bonnie you are such a cutie. Cat I am so very proud of you doing your runs. YOu girl are amazing.

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MSEMBERSTORM 6/26/2010 8:50PM

    Wow what an amazing experience! Hope your family is okay. You have done amazing. You rock!

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NIGHTSKYSTAR 6/26/2010 8:26PM

    You lucky woman!! it sounds fantastic..thank you for sharing!

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CJBAGGINS 6/26/2010 5:42PM

    Hey, some of that sounded verrrrry familiar! I wonder why.

That's awful about your mom's home! I'm so glad they are safe. I hope they have power back by now, and something keeping the rain off their heads.

I'm thrilled that you had a great trip, despite your bronchial troubles and those persistent storms.


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FITTYTIF 6/26/2010 5:10PM

    Again so cool! I am jelous! Sounds like a great trip. And how exciting to actually meet all these great people in person. Thanks for sharing your experience with us.

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L*I*T*A* 6/26/2010 3:57PM

    awesome part 2 with great pictures too.............
you could have stopped in at Victoria......
ah maybe next time...........glad your mother is ok.......
what an home......
blessings and hugs..............lita

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BEAUTIFLDZSTR 6/26/2010 2:58PM

    OH MY GOSH GIRL YOU HAD ME IN TEARS BOTH KIND, from the "rude" marathon planners to the "great" friends. YOU DID IT THOUGH.... was going to give you a hard time for not coming 3 hours south of Seattle to vancouver, but you were busy so I wont lol.

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AMUNET_RA 6/26/2010 2:25PM

    Wow, those storms sure followed you around, didn't they...? Glad the folks in Philly are all right!

It was OUR pleasure to spend time with you, Cat! I consider myself very fortunate to count you among my friends!

Have a safe trip home, Sweetie!


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    Total shame that they started shutting the course down early...those definitely must have been the window smashers, and they were clearly on a schedule. But hooray for the kind people along the route! I bet they make a world of difference.

And woohoo for meeting up with Bonnie, Derek, and CJ! So fun!! Someday, there's going to be a big SP party and we'll all have such a blast.

Love your Forks pictures!!

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Living My Dream!

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

What an exciting month! I am living my dream of traveling all over, seeing old friends and meeting my wonderful Sparkfriends as I celebrate my birthday and feed my bling addiction.


After way too many hours of planes and airports, I arrived in San Diego for the Rock N' Roll Half Marathon. It was my first race back since injuring my knee last September, and I was worried. I couldn't begin training again until March, had only walked (no wogging yet), and I'd only worked up to 9 miles. Soooo ....

A friend who lives in San Francisco said she would sign up so we could do it together. Unfortunately, it filled up before she registered. Still, she flew down for the weekend. We only had a couple of hours to chat before I had to go to bed. She got up with me at o-dark hundred and drove me to the race and then met me afterwards. I know! Above and beyond! I really appreciated it, because I had suffered a bit on the course and was the worse for wear.

San Diego ... lovely city. The race left a lot to be desired, though. 30,000 racers lined up at 5:45 for a 6:00 start. However, instead of letting the elites start and then the rest of us, they held every coral for several minutes. The result? I stood on hard pavement - just stood - for over an hour, finally beginning at 7:15! The winner crossed the finish line mere minutes after I began! He had cool weather and overcast skies. I enjoyed four long hours of brutal sun and mid-80s temperatures. They didn't have enough water and fruit for all the participants, and several stations were cleaned out by the time I arrived. I know! Those winning runners might look like skinny twigs, but they consume a lot of (my) resources! So the people who needed the most got the least. Also, we spent much of the course entering or exiting freeways, and the steeply banked roads were tough on my knees. The fun part was listening to all the bands. They dotted the course and rocked the early morning hours, entertaining runners and giving us encouragement. This race is a fundraiser for cancer, and many of the participants had names and pictures on their shirts, telling us whose memory they were honoring. It was so powerful, especially when I saw pictures of children. I also chatted with survivors, competing to celebrate beating their illness, and they inspired me to keep going.

Despite wearing sunscreen and a hat, I got a nasty sunburn and literally spent two days in a dark hotel room, trying to cool my angry skin. So much for creamy pale skin - I look like a tomato with hair! The edema caused by the congestive heart failure became a bit of a distraction as well. I swelled so badly that I resembled Thing from Fantastic Four. Yikes! (But I burned 5700+ calories that day, so WOOT for that!)

I Amtracked up to Los Angeles (sooo much more pleasant than flying!) to visit more friends. I'd forgotten how pretty LA is. We strolled through farmers' markets, went to the movies, ate lots of delicious ethnic food, and caught up on each other's lives. My feet blistered in the race, so we went shoe shopping for "ouchie friendly sandals". Good times.


From Los Angeles, I traveled to Jackson Hole, Wyoming, where Ems (SHINYSILVRVOLVO) met me at the airport. She's tall, very pretty, and has a big smile. Don't believe me? She got chatted up while we awaited my luggage!! Yes! Right there at the baggage carousel!

Ems shows off Jackson Hole's charms

Sadly, my luggage didn't arrive. I was salty, because I'd had to pay extra to check it, and the least they could do was deliver it. It finally arrived the next afternoon, in several pieces. Isn't that nice of United? I gave them one, new suitcase, and they returned three partial pieces of suitcase. It was just destroyed. There was a notice from the TSA that it'd been searched, and a note from United that any damage was caused by "normal wear and tear." Oh, and some of my knickers were nicked. I tried not to think about that too much.

I stayed with Ems and her family in Rexburg, Idaho, and you just couldn't find a lovelier family in a nicer community. They were so warm and welcoming, even if maybe they were secretly scared that I was really a knife-wielding maniac (They needn't have worried. I showed up with a small carry on and a toiletries bag compliments of United Airlines. I was obviously unarmed!)

Unfortunately, I'd developed a nasty bronchial infection in San Diego that worsened in LA, and I arrived in Idaho with an ugly case of sniffles/cough/fever. I felt lousy, and my excitement was the only thing keeping my vertical. Ems and her family were patient with my need for rest and my nasty coughing and sniffling, and we did what I could manage in the way of sightseeing.

I signed up for the Teton Dam Half Marathon, which honors those killed in the flood when the Teton Dam failed, and it being Idaho, they held a potato bake instead of a pasta dinner. We have potatoes in Lebanon, but they don't taste anything like Idaho 'taters. YUM! In contrast to San Diego, there were only 1300 racers in all categories total, so it was a much smaller affair. Feeling so unwell, I contemplated scrapping the race all together and just enjoying my visit, but you know I'm just not that kind of girl.

We wandered through a farmers' market. I made a beeline for the rhubarb crumble stand. Sadly, the nice man had just sold the last one. I briefly contemplated finding out to whom and putting a hurt on her to grab the pie for myself, but it's a small town, and everyone knows Ems. So for her sake, I spared the vile rhubarb-snarfing woman. The man - named Nathan - noted my accent, and we got to chatting. I told him I was doing the race and said I wished I'd get to come home to a nice rhubarb crumble. He said he lived in mile 3 of the course and could have one waiting for me as I went by. The mental picture of doing 10 miles carrying a pie tickled my funny bone but was seriously impractical. I paid him $7 in advance for a pie, and he said he'd meet me at the race. As we were leaving, Ems said, "I think you might have just made a donation there." I agreed, if for no other reason than $7 seems like nothing for an entire pie, so I kind of figured that he was having me on.

Early the next morning, Ems' mother dropped me off at the starting area. It was 43 degrees, and I was sweating because I was still running a fever. I knew I was in for a tough race when I could barely summon up the energy to line up. Rexburg being a college town, I was one of the oldest people starting, and they all looked healthy and fit. I hunted around for the other determined fatties but couldn't find any and resigned myself to being the token.

Within two minutes of starting, I realized that I should have considered the altitude. Rexburg sits at about 5000', and I live at sea level. And I was congested. And the course was hilly. Yeah. I was quickly left in the dust. Thankfully, it is such a gorgeous area that I decided to take it slow, enjoy the scenery, and finish in my own time.

That worked for about seven miles until the blisters started. Then the asthma attack. Then the rain. I hid in a porta-loo until the rain passed. I was well behind pace, but God bless them - the volunteers remained on the course. I found them huddled under blankets in cars, but they were unfailingly enthusiastic and encouraging. Some of them sang, some of them danced, and some of them just cheered, but they were terrific!

In miles 8 and 11, I sat down on the side of the road and got out the phone to call Ems. Both times, I talked myself out of quitting and got back up. In mile 12, I thought I saw the Rexburg LDS temple spire in the distance and got excited. I crested the hill -- and it was "just" a church. I was deflated for about 10 seconds, until I looked to my left -- and saw the majestic temple waiting for me. I felt an energy burst because 1) it's beautiful and 2) I knew it's near Ems' house, which is near the finish line!

4:34 and 6000 calories later, over an hour behind the next slowest competitor, I crossed the finish line. I hadn't called Ems because I didn't want to make her wait for me, so it was a huge surprise when I saw her and her sister waiting for me. I thought it was incredibly thoughtful of them and made finishing much more special. And then I saw him - our friend Nathan - standing just beyond the finish line with a huge grin on his face, holding a still warm rhubarb crumble!!! He said, "I've been thinking about you, waiting for you to call, and I know you said you'd love to to be greeted by a rhubarb pie when you crossed that line. (I had said that, but I never expected it to literally happen! I just meant that I'm food-obsessed and dream about yummies the way some people fantasize about -- well, whatever they fantasize about.) He continued, "I didn't want to miss you, so I got here and just waited."

Wow. Just wow.

Thank you, Nathan Ashcraft! You are a star!

Ems and her family cooked me a delicious Brazilian feast and sang me a Brazilian happy birthday song. I met some more of her family, and it was a delightful (and surprisingly healthy) affair. On Sunday, I accompanied them to church and hopefully didn't embarrass them. Ems is a talented pianist and plays for the Sunday school. I should have taken a picture of her, because she looked gorgeous all dolled up.

She's a good LDS girl, but Ems has a wild side - just ask cardboard Jacob!

tee hee

On Monday, Ems, her mother and gran took me to Yellowstone National Park. AMAZING!!! We had a blast! We saw lots of animals, geysers - including Old Faithful - and stunning scenery. Ems' family is quite knowledgeable about the park and it was like getting a private park ranger tour. We enjoyed a big picnic lunch and saw an IMAX movie about Yellowstone before making the long drive home. It was a real highlight for me.

Ems could not have been a more gracious hostess, and her family are just the best. I had no idea Idaho was so beautiful -- or so high up in the air!! Note to self: acclimate before trying to race at high altitude!

I know my finish times are unimpressive, but it feels great to be racing again. Getting to meet my Sparkfriends as I see beautiful places is a dream come true and something I will always treasure.

Stay tuned for part two - coming soon! emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DOTSLADY 8/23/2010 2:25PM

    emoticon emoticon. Congestive heart failure? I am not keeping up - I had no idea. YOU ARE A-MAZING!

Jackson area is my fave place on earth. I've been a lot of places, though certainly not as many as you, but still, it's a fave. It was fun to see your pics. And thank gawd you got your pie.


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FITTYTIF 6/26/2010 5:07PM

    Oh I am so sorry i have been so out of it. I would of loved to have met up with you. I am in-between San Diego and La. The train station is just down the road from mr.
Your adventures sound like so much fun. I looked in the the rock and roll butbi am not ready to go that far 5k is my max for now.
I love the pie story. That is just too cool!
What great memories you will have desipe some of the problems. Oh and a little too late but never fly united. They are the worst.

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BEAUTIFLDZSTR 6/26/2010 3:24PM

    I read part 1 before part 2 (ya I tend to read the end of a book before the beginning also). Cried my way thru this one too.... HOWEVER NOW I WANT TO KNOW WHY YOU DIDNT STOP IN VANCOUVER lol pdx is 10 minutes from my house and a MAJOR airport lol

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ELVENSONG1 6/26/2010 1:15PM

    SO....make NH part of the tour :) That would be awesome. And Holly isn't all that far away from here.

Comment edited on: 6/26/2010 1:17:42 PM

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MSEMBERSTORM 6/26/2010 12:25AM

    Wow what a great experience! You are awesome gal! Keep it up! If your ever in Oklahoma look me up!

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SHORTTOOTH1 6/24/2010 8:08AM

    Wow and Wow! What an amazing trip. It sounds like something that I've always dreamed of doing myself.

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AMUNET_RA 6/23/2010 8:31PM

    Wow! I had almost as much fun reading your comments as I had reading your blog!

Nathan is married?? *sigh*

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COLEISMYSOUL 6/23/2010 6:12PM

    All I can say is WOW and HAPPY BIRTHDAY! You have the most awesome adventures. It is wonderful to hear from you. emoticon

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MBVMFLUTIST 6/23/2010 1:41PM

    What an awesome trip!!! I am so jealous!!!!!

And great job finishing 2 races, you are totally amazing. :)

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NIMAWEYGH 6/23/2010 12:04AM


This sounds just like the most fun, interesting, wonderful trip ever. I love all the pictures and it is so nice to see Ems in them. You got to see such beautiful places and do some wonderful races. You can be so proud of yourself for not quitting, I would have passed out at 1/10th of a mile an passed ya in the ambulence...............ha

I can tell by your words that you really made some wonderful memories. And raced for such good causes. pat pat pat on the back.

Hope you are now feeling much better health wise and how is that knee holding up, sounds like just fine.

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AIDELADE27 6/22/2010 11:23PM

    Oh, my god, I don't even know what to say to this blog. So much detail! I'm so glad you had such great races, even though you were sick emoticon Bison is so cute! I'm soooo glad you and Em had such a nice time together! Ahh! Such nice warm feelings after reading this! And emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon on those races!

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-SEVEN- 6/22/2010 8:42PM

    emoticonCat! (and wow, what a trooper!) Sounds like (despite not feeling so great), you had a lot of fun anyway! And hey... what's Em doing kissing my boy??? emoticon

Comment edited on: 6/22/2010 8:43:48 PM

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CJBAGGINS 6/22/2010 8:10PM

    What fun. I felt like I was there as I read!
Looking forward to the second installment.


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ZIRCADIA 6/22/2010 7:42PM

    The sorting hat was here??? How odd.... *doot do doo...*

DUDE!!! Two more race finishes to notch the old belt! :D CONGRATULATIONS!!!!!!!!! Also - I'm amazed Em doesn't realize how gorgeous she is and is always flustered when we say so. GIRL IS DROP DEAD. Never seen her in person, but I imagine seeing the real thing is only better. Anyway - Glad you had a fabulous time! I CAN'T BELIEVE THAT GUY REALLY BROUGHT YOUR PIE! THAT IS AWESOME! :D hahahaha :D *HUGS* I wish I were meeting you - you should've seen the comment I left on Em's facebook photo. I was like YOU GOT TO MEET CAT?!?!?!?!?!? So jealous.

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SORTING.HAT 6/22/2010 7:41PM

    don't mind me...

Comment edited on: 6/22/2010 7:42:21 PM

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NEWSTART127 6/22/2010 7:39PM

    I was totally transported from my office chair into your adventures! How awesome, amazing and fantastic and 1000 other superlatives!!!
You are something special! Hope that pie was YUMMY! emoticon

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DEBULACLARK 6/22/2010 7:37PM

    Everything about you is impressive CAT! GREAT JOB!!! I'm so glad you got to meet Ems during this installment!! I wish I could have been there to meet you both!!
...and God Bless Nathan...that was so nice of him.

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DANIMITE2 6/22/2010 7:25PM

    You said "port-a-loo"! emoticon

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IRISH_AGUIRRE 6/22/2010 4:41PM

  Wow! What adventure!

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    Your bear and moose pictures turned out way better than mine! So much for a dinky zoom... emoticon

It was fun to meet up and realize that Sparkers really ARE real people! They don't just live in my computer!

And I'm emoticon! I will definitely agree that I'm tall and have a big smile...

And guess what!? I went out with airport guy! It wasn't anything special, but I've got a new friend now! He was really nice, but is rarely in the area. But we made plans to get together the next time he comes through, which will probably be October.

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KIMCATUS 6/22/2010 2:30PM

    BISON!!!!!! OMG I heart bison so much!!!!!! *looks around* Oh sorry after all that you did and all I noticed was bison.....LOL

What a fun time!!! I'm so so jealous you got to meet Em!! But it looks like y'all had such a great time!

Isn't Yellowstone just amazingly gorgeous??? And Em too.....SHE is amazingly gorgeous too! ;-)

WOO HOO on your races....that is so awesome! You never cease to astonish and amaze me lady!!

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DISPATCH91 6/22/2010 1:50PM

    Thanks for such a wonderful narrative of your adventures so far. Love the photos. That is definately interesting Em and chalkboard Jacob since I thought she was a definate vamp follower emoticon

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SLCOLMAN 6/22/2010 1:22PM

    You are amazing!! So glad that you had such a wonderful amazing trip and races!!

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NIGHTSKYSTAR 6/22/2010 11:48AM

    oh..and i REALLY want to meet this Nathan...a man who #1 bakes. #2 is kind. and #3..KNOWS that rhubarb is WAY better ALONE than with strawberries. is he single??

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BEEHAPPY2 6/22/2010 11:23AM

    Hi Cat-Glad you had such a fantastic trip doing your races and visiting Spark friends like Em, Bonnie and CJ! Now please rest up a bit at home so you can get better from being sick. I am so glad to be your buddy on this health journey. You are an inspiration! Snakes never stop slithering. Hugs, Bee emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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L*I*T*A* 6/22/2010 9:18AM

    awesome and inspirational at the same time!!
what a wonderful the pictures too!!
hope you are feeling better now......
blessings and hugs..............lita

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BUFFALOGAL1952 6/22/2010 9:11AM

    INCREDIBLE BLOG!!! Wow DID IT!!! You REALLY DID IT! What an experience!!! And sprinkling friends in too! Good for you!!! emoticon

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AMUNET_RA 6/22/2010 8:40AM

    ...and Nathan Ashcraft is famous, now!! What a cutie and a sweetheart for doing that for you!!

Thanks for sharing your story, Cat and for all the wonderful photos! You are truly amazing and such an inspiration to so many of us here!

emoticon Mmmmwah!!

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NIGHTSKYSTAR 6/22/2010 7:39AM

    well i dont care about finish times you ROCK my dear!! and Nathan rocks..first for doing that for you and second for making rhubarb crumble for $7..incredible!! I am so glad you are having a wonderful time and lucky Ems to have you for that long!!
Enjoy the rest....
love ya!!

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FIENDISHSARAH 6/22/2010 7:13AM

    This blog is AWESOME! Congrats on finishing the marathons, and you're sooo lucky you got to meet Ems! Love all the pics, especially the one of her jumpin' in with you at the end, it's too cute! I'm so glad you had fun!

Love ya!! emoticon

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BRAVAH 6/22/2010 7:10AM

    Hi Cat!

Wow! Wow! Wow!!! Two races, and an incredible trip! You go girl! I am so proud to know you. What an inspiration you are!!!

I am really glad that you got to see some friends and hang out with Em! It really looks like an incredible trip. Good for you for completing both races... especially one at altitude!



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1000 days

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

I've been sparking about as long as Anne was queen. Just about now, she was getting her head lopped off, so even though losing weight wasn't her goal, she STILL did better than I did! emoticon

Whether it's good, bad, or just ugly, we need to take an honest look at ourselves if we ever want to improve our lives. I'm "heck-bent" on turning 40 healthier than when I turned 30. It's harder than it sounds, but I'm determined. When I turn 40, I want my finances in check, blooming health, a centered emotional life, and career success. So how am I doing?

HEALTH - I've had three surgeries since January and have another one in the works. I wish they were cosmetic, but sadly, I'm just falling apart. Yesterday, I was diagnosed with connective tissue disease based on results of blood work and scans. They think it's a big part of my pain, but it can be controlled. Unfortunately, the medicine is not available here. I'll find a way - trust me!

As for weight loss, not exercising much has made that very difficult. However, I signed up for a couple of races to help me structure my program and motivate myself. I am sooooo weak right now that it's scary, but I'm not giving up. Rather than focus on weight loss per se for the next 100 days, my health goal is to stay with the plan I made, work it every day, and complete the races. No time goal - just to get over the line.

FINANCES - Several surgeries and rubbish health insurance have drained me financially, but I live frugally and am squeaking by. My goal for the next 100 days is to be at the same level of debt, despite needing another surgery, so careful planning is in order.

PROFESSIONAL - I am not going to resit my exam any time soon. I just don't have time to properly prepare. I got an amazingly good review this year and am grateful that my insane workload is being rewarded. I'm up for promotion this summer and should know in a few months if I got it. The extra $$ would be a Godsend.

EMOTIONAL - I'm keeping my promise to focus more on what I need, I've dialed back my time online to get in more exercise and sleep, have stepped back from stressful situations whenever possible, and am trying to find joy in everyday life. I've created an urban jungle of a garden on my balconies, am trying to improve my real-life relationships, am forcing myself to socialize more, and am chatting with God regularly. Of all the categories, I think this is the one where I've made the most progress since day 900.

So, my goals:

1. Get the next surgery taken care of
2. Commit to training schedule
3. Complete races
4. Accrue no additional debt
5. Make time for sleep and play

I wish I were wealthy and could spend all my time traveling around, hangin' with my lovely Sparkfriends. I am thrilled that I will meet a few of them in June and look forward to meeting more in future travels. Thanks for being there through the ups and downs, and I hope you are all making progress towards your goals and realizing your dreams! emoticon emoticon

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

DANCETHEBEACH 6/21/2010 8:34AM

    Okay ... I am WAY LATE in seeing this post. Please let me know 1) how the surgery went (if it has taken place) and 2) if I can do anything at all to be of any help (no need to ask for prayers, those are already on the way up for you).

Much love and hugs,
emoticon emoticon

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KIMCATUS 5/27/2010 9:34AM

    Ok I'm a little behind (as usual! lol) but wanted to say that even though all the adversity and obstacles you face you STILL keep with your plan and have such a great outlook! I KNOW you will be successful and I'm behind you 100000000% (100% just didn't seem like enough!).

Thanks for always being an inspiration to me!!!! *hugs*

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SLCOLMAN 5/6/2010 3:53PM

    I think that your goals are wonderful :)
Praying that the next surgery goes well and that you continue to heal and feel better!!
I have a connective tissue disease too. Mine is called Ehlers-Danlos Syndrome.

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MSEMBERSTORM 5/5/2010 1:12AM

    Hug gal! I think of you frequently. Keep moving forward. You can do this! You will do this! Hugs!

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QUEMBEL1 5/4/2010 10:17PM

    Those are healthy goals to have. And 40 is a great age. That's about the time your head finally gets screwed on the right way. emoticon (I thought you were the same age as me and Jill- you are so young!)
So what is happening in June? Where are y'all meeting, if I may be so nosy?
You know I love you! Really I do. You and Jill are my best Spark buds.

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CJBAGGINS 5/4/2010 9:54PM

    Oh, that's so cool that you get to meet some sparkfriends in June.
Who are the lucky people?
Hey. Wait a minute.

Seriously, great job at laying down your areas for improvement, and your goals for the next little while. That's part of the battle, right? All the best in meeting them.


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SUETINGE 5/4/2010 6:43PM

    emoticon I know you can do it!

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COLEISMYSOUL 5/4/2010 5:47PM

    You can do this - you have a great attitude and it helps me, too!

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LUV_VICKIE 5/4/2010 3:37PM

    Hang in there Cat
You can do it
We are rooting for you
emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ZIRCADIA 5/4/2010 12:38PM

    *HUGS* You are such an inspiration how positive and goal focused you can remain with so many struggles. Keep rocking it! :)

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    And I am absolutely insane with excitement that you're coming!! I can't believe it's really happening...kind of one of those things that you always hope for, but don't ever really plan on. So the reality is fantastic and I can't wait!!!

I'm so impressed with how you're doing. Okay, so the weight loss has slowed due to health issues, but you're sticking to your plan! You're still doing what you know you should be doing, even though it's probably frustrating and painful. That is a huge victory, and one that I wish I could claim right now. I'm famous for giving up. But I'm going to follow your example and just concentrate on sticking to a plan for the next 100 days instead of focusing on that dratted scale. For what it's worth, you're one of my inspirations!

Here's to a super-successful next 100 days!!

emoticon emoticon

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    Oh hon. I wish you the best through your next surgery and I'm so sorry to hear about your diagnosis. Best of luck getting the medications you need!

As for your goals, they sound like great ones. Hang in there! Things have to get better soon!


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DISPATCH91 5/4/2010 11:24AM

    emoticon you are such a good mico mangager. You set great goals and are an inspiration.

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INDIE_V 5/4/2010 11:22AM

    Good luck with all your goals, Cat. All the best for everything! Huge hug and happy thoughts sent your way. emoticon

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SIXFULLERS 5/4/2010 10:47AM

    you are such an inspiration to me. :) Thanks

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ESBELL 5/4/2010 9:37AM

    I hope the diagnosis can help put an end to the pain. You have already been through so much, and have shown such strength & grace throughout your ordeal. Prayers for you!

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L*I*T*A* 5/4/2010 9:26AM

    what a truly amazing and inspirational woman you are to us all.............
love your goals...........
all the best with your next surgery and new goals....
blessings and hugs............lita

emoticon emoticon emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/4/2010 9:31:37 AM

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    Wow. You have been through so much. Your bravery and perseverance inspire others to dodge their slings and arrows. I celebrated my 40th with bad knees, a bad back, and half a million dollars in debt. But the only thing that matters is the day-to-day steps I take to enjoy what I can. Exercise, sleep, healthy foods, and medications make all the difference in the world.

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8THTIMEUP 5/4/2010 8:15AM

    Great post and great plan. Since you didn't include Eric in your goals I'm taking him! emoticon

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NIGHTSKYSTAR 5/4/2010 7:37AM

    You are of my heros. You are beautiful and brave and determined...everything i wish i was!!
You WILL reach your goals--i KNOW it!!and if you need a little shove now THAT i'm good at!
I hope you will hurry back to Hogwarts, you are missed there.
Remember, if you need me, i'm here!

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BRAVAH 5/4/2010 7:32AM

    Dear Cat!

What a wonderful blog!!! And how fantastic that you will be better at 40 than 30! How far away is 40 for you (I've only got a couple of months!)? What is your next surgery? Sorry about the connective tissue disease... but maybe having a diagnosis will be a positive turning point!

Keep up the great work towards your awesome goals!

.S. Thanks for your comment on my page. You are right... I know what it takes and will do it! And so will you!

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DEBULACLARK 5/4/2010 7:28AM

    Cat, these are fantastic goals! You will accomplish them, i have faith in you. You are an work through that pain and it amazes me! Love you, my friend!!!

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    These are super goals, and focusing on them in a realisitic way when you're in a little rut (without a time restriction) is sometimes the best way to go! I'm thinking of you lots, hope all your surgeries go well and you can get your hands on that medicine!

Keep being awesome Cat, even when you feel like your goals aren't moving, you're still an inspiration to me!!

Love ya lots! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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DANIMITE2 5/4/2010 6:06AM

    Wonderful goals, my sweet friend. You have such a healthy attitude! I know the weight of all these surgeries and their effects is a heavy burden, but please know that I'm hear to lend an ear! You will get through this Cat, and its going to be amazing on the other side! Can't wait til January!!!

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On a Spark break but still missing you all!

Tuesday, April 20, 2010

Hi everyone!

I'm on a Spark break, but I miss everyone and still check in whenever I have time. My knee is doing much better following this latest surgery -- I did a slow 8 miles today! My eye infection is clearing up although I don't see that well yet. Soon, I hope!

Although I am not online often right now, I love hearing from people and was saddened to learn that Casia-Anne has deleted her account. I don't know why but hope she'll come back one day soon!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

BRAVAH 4/28/2010 4:11AM

    I've been missing you, Cat! I'm so happy to hear that your knee is doing better! Best wishes for your eye! I was stuck in London (for an extra week after a planned stay - due to the stupid volcano). I was thinking about you and wishing that you and I could be stuck in London together sometime. Have a nice Spark break and talk to you soon.


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MSEMBERSTORM 4/26/2010 10:19PM

    Glad to hear you are improving. Miss you much! We will be here when you return. Take care of yourself and heal quickly. Hugs!

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FITTYTIF 4/26/2010 12:42AM

    Hey Missing you As well!! And am jealous 8 miles. Dang and I am just hoping to make the 5K sounds like you are doing great!

Comment edited on: 4/26/2010 12:43:35 AM

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DOTSLADY 4/24/2010 6:17PM

    Hi Cat - thought I'd stop by and say hello. I was wondering about the surgery. 8 miles already?
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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ZIRCADIA 4/22/2010 1:38PM

    YES on the 8 miles! So glad things are going well :)

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MDMNINA 4/22/2010 11:50AM

    I myself have cut way back on my SP time. I was spending way to much time on the computer. But I always enjoy hearing from my specail friends, like you. Hubby and I drove up to WDW on Tuesday. Thought of you!

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GINGER_LOSTALOT 4/21/2010 1:32PM

    I was wondering about your knee just the other day! Glad you checked in! How funny that you and I both did 8 miles! My knees are a little sore, but ok. Keep up the good work!

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SLCOLMAN 4/21/2010 11:54AM

    You are amazing! I hope that the knee and the eye get better every day!

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SHORTTOOTH1 4/21/2010 11:06AM

    Hi, this is still Casia-Anne. I'm still here, just with a different name. I put an explanation in my last blog post if you want to read it.

On to you, I'm impressed that you have been running 8 miles while injured!! Slow or not, that is a really long run.

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DISPATCH91 4/21/2010 9:54AM

    Girlfriend you are amazing, I am dying after doing more than 1 mile LOL

Take care of yourself, sweetie, you are one of a kind.

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FLORIDAFAN 4/21/2010 9:28AM

Take care of you Cat and healthy recovery! Miss you around here

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AMUNET_RA 4/21/2010 6:56AM

    Congrats on the 8-miles!!! That's 7 miles more than I can do!

Miss you loads! Glad you're popping in :-)


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LUV_VICKIE 4/21/2010 3:59AM

    I miss you, Cat. Your enthusiasm and support has brightened many a day. Get well soon and TAKE CARE OF YOURSELF!

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INDIE_V 4/21/2010 3:17AM

    We miss you, Cat! Hope you get better soon and that health problems stay far far away from now on. Well done on the 8 miles!!

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NEWSTART127 4/21/2010 12:29AM

    emoticonHere's to a speedy recovery! So glad that you're doing better.

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HPTHATBME 4/20/2010 8:11PM

    Good Luck with the recovery Cat! You will be missed!

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SUETINGE 4/20/2010 7:03PM

    We definitely miss you, too. Great job on the 8 miles. I think I need to up my distance the next time I walk.

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COLEISMYSOUL 4/20/2010 6:50PM

    Glad your knee and eye are doing well. Looking forward to your return!

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L*I*T*A* 4/20/2010 6:42PM

    miss you too.....glad to hear you had further surgery .........
sounds like you are recovering well............
all the best..................
blessings and hugs............lita

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CJBAGGINS 4/20/2010 6:29PM

    Hey Cat! I was thrilled to see that you had posted a blog!
Well done on the (slow) 8 miles. Good to know that the recovery is going well.
I hope the eye continues to get better as the days go by.

See you soon I hope!


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ESBELL 4/20/2010 5:37PM

    I'm so happy to hear that your knee is doing better!!! Eight miles is a long way on it - slow or not!! Congrats for getting that far!!!!

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NIGHTSKYSTAR 4/20/2010 4:11PM

    We miss you cant know how much!! so glad the knee is doing better!! hope you have 20/20 soon...
so good to hear from you!!

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    Great work on the 8 miles! I need to take a page out of your book and work harder and better than I have been. Lots of prayers going up for a very speedy recovery! Can't wait to see you in June!!!!


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MAPLELEAFMOM 4/20/2010 3:50PM

    Missing you but it sounds like you are doing great with recovery :) 8 miles is very impressive!! emoticon Can't wait to see you in January emoticon so keep up the good healing emoticon

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FIENDISHSARAH 4/20/2010 3:50PM

I am so lonelyyyyy!

Miss you!! emoticon

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    Ohhhh I'm so glad to hear from you!!!!!!!


I hope you get better very very very soon!!!!!!!!!!!!

So glad to hear about those 8 miles. I'm running my first 10 mile race this weekend! EEK!

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BEXTRESS 4/20/2010 3:19PM

    We miss you too, Cat! Great job on your 8 miles! emoticon

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900 Days

Thursday, January 28, 2010

One hundred days ago, I blogged about 800 days on Spark, covering what I think I've done well and what I need to do to turn my dreams into goals.

So after 100 more days, where am I?

1. Finances. Make a budget. Done. The credit card debt has been trickier. I injured my knees and am in fact undergoing surgery today. I'm cruising through money like I have it, and I have not paid down my debt like I'd wanted.

2. My home. Done. I unpacked all but once tricky set of boxes, decluttered a lot, and I'm turning my four walls and roof into a lovely little home. It makes a big difference in how I feel.

3. Complete the Tower of Terror race. Done! I'm especially proud of this one.

4. Health: I wanted to lose 20 lbs. I lost 10, but with not being able to exercise and walking with a cane, I still think it's a good accomplishment. I log what I eat, even when I'm not proud of it, and I have been serious in my commitment to getting enough rest and sleep.

4. Professional: I haven't done anything towards getting my test resat, and I need to, but I have taken a good hard look at my image and office situation and been proactive in managing my relationships so that I'm in a strong position in my office. My supervisors love me, and my subordinates are happy, and I feel that i'm doing a good job. So I'll give myself a provisional "atta girl" for this one.

5. Emotional: I have been focusing a bit more on my needs. I'm trying to learn to set boundaries and be a bit selfish. If I don't look after myself, who will?

The next 100 days:

1. HEALTH: I'm having surgery today. I hope to be up and around soon and have already mapped a fitness plan for myself. However, I do need to pay more attention to what I eat. I eat well for a few days and then go off the wagon for a few days, undoing my earlier success. I need to understand my body better and make choices that I can implement consistently.

2. FINANCES: These medical bills are killing me, but I need to ride that wave, and figure out a plan to allow me to mange my debt.

3. PROFESSIONAL: I will set up a study schedule to resit the exam by June.

4. EMOTIONAL: Being here in London right now, I realise how much I miss going to church and will find ways to nourish my soul more. In Beirut, Christians are Catholics, Orthodox, or Maronite, and their services never feel comfortable for me. Even if it's reading the Bible and quiet contemplation, I need more God in my life.

Thank you to everyone on Sparkpeople who has supported me, offered advice, and been a friend. You really are wonderful! I am looking forward to blogging about 1000 days and sharing my successes!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MARGOMCP 3/7/2010 5:49PM

    What a great idea! I see the doctor every 3 months, sort of use that as my health measuring period.

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GXROXY 1/31/2010 7:06PM

    Cat, you are such an inspiration to so many people, and my prayers are with you that you heal quickly from your surgery. God bless you girl!

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AIMEE_B 1/31/2010 5:26PM

    Hello dear girl!

All things in their own time, right? Of course, if we don't make the effort, then that's a bunch of hogwash. However, you are on the right track and doing just dandy!

Prayers are with you doing your recovery. Enjoy London!

Much Love,


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NIMAWEYGH 1/30/2010 12:25AM

    Oh Cat you are such an inspiration to so many of us. You are honest with yourself and that is so important in this battle we are all fighting to be a healthier version of our unhealthy selves.

You have done well Luke and the force is defiantly with you........... emoticon

You keep on truckin and like the rest of em I can't wait to hear what has happened in the next 100 days.

Love ya girl,

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FITTYTIF 1/29/2010 10:48PM

    what A great idea to reflect at 100 days.
as for your surgery I hope all went well. and your are doing what you can to recover well. I know you will probly be out for the count for a while but keeping track of your food will be a big help while you recover. I also suggest doing upperbody exercises. That is what I did during my recovery.
And 10 lbs I very good considering the knee and cane and all. SO CONGRATS And just think once you have this all fixed up how much you will be able to lose then!!!
Hugs!!! (ANd sorry I am behind in my blogs!)

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IZZYBUBBLES 1/29/2010 5:10PM

    I completely agree with Kim - you constantly amaze me!! You'll be in my prayers, I'm hoping your surgery goes really well and gets you back into doing something that you love soon!

You have the right to be selfish sometimes. We women don't always do a very good job of taking care of ourselves because we're so busy taking care of other people at times. Be good to yourself because you deserve it!!

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GINGER_LOSTALOT 1/29/2010 1:56PM

    You've made a lot of progress and have a lot to look forward to. Remember... progress, not perfection.

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MSEMBERSTORM 1/29/2010 11:47AM

    You are doing well with all the things you planned. I will keep you in my prayers for a successful surgery. Hugs gal!

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DDUNKIES 1/29/2010 12:39AM

    Cat- i love how you have mapped out your goals into segments- i wish you nothing but success in your next 1000 blogs- love ya donna

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RAVEN1025 1/28/2010 9:50PM

    You are doing so well! I am so very proud of you. I hope all goes well with your surgery! I am keeping you in my thoughts and sending many well wishes your way.

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    I think it's so great to go back and look at goals and how far we've come. You, my friend, have done amazing things that people told you you'd never do. That's the kind of perserverance that will win this battle. You have it in loads, and I so admire that! You're gonna go places!! I look forward to your next 100 day report!

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CJBAGGINS 1/28/2010 6:35PM

    Well done, Cat!
Taking the time to make your list of goals, and then reflecting back on them over time is a wonderful idea and one sure fire way to keep yourself on track and working towards meeting them.

Good for you!

Sorry to hear that you are not able to attend your church services (I hadn't realized there would not be any Anglican churches in Beirut). I know that would bother me as well. I wish you all the best in finding time to be with God in the next 200 days.

emoticon emoticon



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COLEISMYSOUL 1/28/2010 6:00PM

    Nice going on your goals! You take care of yourself, get that knee in working condition. In my thoughts~

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ELVENSONG1 1/28/2010 5:03PM

    Wonderful reflection on the past 100 days. Awesome goal setting. You have done well. ((((((Hugs))))))))

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MDMNINA 1/28/2010 2:19PM

    I love you honest look at your goals and accomplishments. You have indeed come a long way. Good luck on the surgery today. Keep us posted!

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KIMCATUS 1/28/2010 12:49PM

    I think you've done a GREAT job with your limitations and circumstances and and always, you amaze me with your great attitude and focusing on what you CAN do!!! *hugs*

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L*I*T*A* 1/28/2010 12:38PM

so great all those accomplishments!!!!
wishing you a quick and easy recovery........
sending positive thougths and prayers...........
blessings and hugs...........lita

Comment edited on: 1/28/2010 12:40:41 PM

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BEEHAPPY2 1/28/2010 12:17PM

    So proud of all you have accomplished while on Spark! You will come through the surgery with flying colors-just please take it slow and easy afterwards :) I am working on finances with a website called DebtGoal that has helped a lot with sticking to a plan. I have always wanted to visit London and am enjoying your stories about it! Take good care of yourself my friend Hugs, Bee emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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SLCOLMAN 1/28/2010 12:14PM

    I hope that surgery goes well for you!!
I think that your 100 day progress report is a SUCCESS!!
Always inspiring!!

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ZIRCADIA 1/28/2010 11:26AM

    Wow, you have made great progress in the past 100 days and I like your revised future goals as well.

Good luck with the surgery, Cat!!! I'll be thinking about you!

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ESBELL 1/28/2010 11:01AM

    You accomplished quite a lot in the past 100 days. I hope that your surgery goes well, and you can get up and around quickly!

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SUETINGE 1/28/2010 10:58AM

    emoticon You've accomplished a lot in the last 100 days! I know you will do great things in the next 100.

Praying that the surgery goes (went with the time difference) well and that you're able to lose the can and get moving again like you want to.

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FLORIDAFAN 1/28/2010 9:35AM

    I will give you an atta girl! YOu have done great. Best of luck with the surgery today. Heres to a speedy recovery!

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AMUNET_RA 1/28/2010 8:57AM

    You have done very well in these past 100 days and I'm wishing you all the best for the next 100! ((HUGS))

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BRAVAH 1/28/2010 8:47AM

    Hello gorgeous woman!

I am sorry that you are in such limbo-land of surgery! But at least you get to hang out in London!!! Okay, so now I'm the one that's jealous... which opera were you listening to in Covent Garden?

It really sounds like you've done a super job with your list! Good for you! I know you can continue to reinforce the progress you've already made and make even more!

I really hope your surgery went well and that you have a good recovery! You are n amazing woman and I know you can reach all of your goals!

Let us know how your recovery is going!


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RINOACHAN 1/28/2010 7:54AM

    emoticon on all your accomplishments!

Hoping for the best with your surgery!! emoticon

out of curiousity, do you go private? cos that sucks about the medial debt emoticon

Comment edited on: 1/28/2010 7:55:39 AM

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    All the best on your surgery today! Fast healing vibes are being sent your way! :)

I think it's pretty darn good what you've done for the past 100 days, especially considering your knee!!!! So I think the next 100 will be just as successful. Hang in there!


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DEBULACLARK 1/28/2010 7:05AM

    Cat - you've accomplished so much. Be proud and good luck on your surgery today!

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NIGHTSKYSTAR 1/28/2010 6:39AM

    I am SO proud of you!! i think you have accomplished HUGE things.
Prayers being said all day for successful surgery...pain free days without canes!!!
I am proud to be your friend!!!!
Love you!

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INDIE_V 1/28/2010 6:27AM

    Cat, you deserve huge emoticon for everything you've accomplished so far! You're definitely on the right track and I'm sure that the next 100 days will be as productive and successful, if not more so.
Reading your blog today inspired me a lot, so thank you for that. I started my own mini tracking challenge today, aiming to exercise for 10 min every day for 100 days.
I hope your surgery goes well and that you're on the path of recovery very very soon.

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