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Christmas Meltdown!!

Thursday, December 10, 2009

Yikes! Is that really me babbling, about to cry for no reason, feeling tense and ready to bite a hunk outta someone????
Yep, that's me stressing out over the list of things to do around the house, the list of things to finish up so I can mail out to family, the items to be baked for the employees, the cards that need to be addressed and mailed so they get to the USA before 2010! Should I go on??! No, it's not a pretty sight and not worth describing.

This is what happens when I work without a plan, without putting my goals to paper and my to be finished by notations!!

So how do I regroup at this late date? How do I salvage my frizzing fissling overflowing mind? By taking things one at a time and make that list NOW and follow through with it.
Prioritize what I need to have done and work through that list. The gifts to the employees do not have to be finished today as they aren't getting their goodie bags till next Thursday, BUT the gifts to the grandkids need to get finished as they need to be in the post so they arrive BEFORE Christmas!!
BREATH....take some time to do AHHHHHHHHHHHhhh and get out of the house for a bit of exercise. The time spent away from the to do things is well spent so that when I return I have clarity of mind to get back to the next thing on my list!

Yes, I was fraying off at the ends yesterday and I may again before all is accomplished, but at least I won't puddle up on the floor and sit babbling in that puddle!! I'm getting through one day at a time!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Love you Mary!!!!

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RHYNIC 12/12/2009 11:25AM

    I thought you had a picture of me at the start of this blog. lol

Today I am having a great day. I made myself a list yesterday and got all that NEEDED to be done, done. Wow what a weight off my shoulders. I still have lots to do, but now I can make a new list of priorities.

Make a list girl...and make the things that are stressing you out happen so that you can feel better and enjoy the holidays.


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RAIDERMOM2277 12/10/2009 3:58PM

  Why is it that as women we all panick at he prospect of not getting everything done and done perfectly?! Enjoy your exercise time and when you come back, you'll be rejuvenated to finish off your to do list. emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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JILLWILSON2102 12/10/2009 10:27AM

    Mary I just cannot imagine you puddled up on the floor, but we all have our moments, my friend. I, too, have a list that overflows. Just reminding myself that in two weeks this stress load will be alleviated helps. And knowing that what you are doing is from your heart - you can't give anymore than that, Mary, so as you said - BREATHE - and then power on!

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CAZ_NR_HEATHROW 12/10/2009 8:17AM

    Hi Mary, yep that time of year has most women frazzled LOL.
Good luck with getting it all done; so far so good this end
Have a great Thursday hun

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THERESEMB1 12/10/2009 7:55AM

    I second that LOL good luck and happy holidays!!!

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NUTRON3 12/10/2009 6:56AM

    LOL Good luck

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Celebrate With Me!!

Thursday, November 26, 2009

Not only is today Thanksgiving... but it's my 58th Birthday! YIKES!!! Just saying that almost makes me gasp! But the excellent news is, I am a much healthier 58 year old than I was a 48 year old!
Being over 3,000 miles away from my US family and friends doesn't mean I don't take time out each Thanksgiving to celebrate and today won't be an exception. The day is extra special because I am thankful for it being my birthday.
I've thought about how I want to get the day started this morning and thought how cool it would be to celebrate it with you reading this. Let's do a bit of a challenge...why not celebrate the day with me? OK, I know you can't physically get yourselves over here BUT we could do something healthy to celebrate!

Yes, it's a busy day, yes you have tons of things to do and yes the day will just zip by. But, why not give yourself just 58 minutes to join me in a run, a walk, a sport of some kind? How cool to spend the time together being thankful, celebrating a birthday, and being good to yourself all at the same time!!
I'm heading out for a 5.8 celebratory run on a favourite route of mine this morning. I will most likely get rained on, but while out there, I'll be giving my thanks for the ability to do this, for my friends and family near and far, and for all of you fantastic folks here on SP!
May each of you be blessed today and let's celebrate!!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RHYNIC 11/26/2009 7:41AM

    I will celebrate with you. I am not exactly sure how right now. Running 5.8 miles in 58 minutes sounds like fun, but today I had already promised a buddy that I would join her in a run. I am not sure that she will be able to run 5.8 miles at that pace. Our longest run together is 6 miles, but at a much slower pace.

SO I will wish you a happy birthday. And later tonight I will send you a note to let you know exactly what I did to celebrate your birthday.

Have a great day.


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CAZ_NR_HEATHROW 11/26/2009 7:39AM

    Have a wonderful birthday Mary

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SOOKIE 11/26/2009 5:05AM

    What a wonderful way to celebrate ... HAPPY BIRTHDAY!

Although its my scheduled rest day, I will join you by staying hydrated.

Have a emoticon day!


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Twenty years ago today

Monday, November 09, 2009

It was 1989, and the world changed.
Being the first full generation born in the USA, I have always been interested in the Europe my mother and grandparents left behind. It is no wonder that I found the event of that 9 November so enthralling. The wall had come down, lives were no longer going to be lost by attempting to tunnel, climb over, swim accross a river, to reach freedom in Berlin. (I am not German, but of Polish heritage)
Freedom is something so very precious that people will risk their lives to achieve. I had the opportunity first hand to see the new Berlin of today and relive a bit of history from 20 years ago.

My husband and I were in Berlin not even 2 months ago for the Berlin Marathon and took time to go to checkpoint Charlie and see the momentos of a time when a city's cement and concrete wall seperate it's people. Near the Brandenburgh Tor I stood infront of crosses, markers and signs in honor of those freedom seekers who lost their lives attempting to cross the barrier. I was awed by their sacrifice and saddend by the life lost just days before the wall came down.
There is much to ponder and I am thankful and grateful for the freedom that I enjoy. The link below takes us back to what lead up to this moment in history and a chance to remember. A warm Happy 20th Anniversary to the people of Berlin and Germany.

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

NANCY-GIRL 11/9/2009 11:44AM

    Wow, Mary. Thank you for posting this & for posting that video. The Barber Adagio is even more moving w/ those images & those images are even more moving w/ the Barber Adagio. It amazes me that just 20 yrs & 1 day ago that our "modern," western civilization still upheld those conditions & beliefs, & it makes me, for one, more aware of the tyranny & oppression that still exists to this day in other parts of the world. May God bless the people of Berlin & may He grant peace & patience & endurance to those who are still under political bondage.

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JILLWILSON2102 11/9/2009 11:30AM

    Mary it is true that we take our freedom for granted. Thank you for the thoughtful reminders of how blessed and fortunate we are. emoticon

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CAZ_NR_HEATHROW 11/9/2009 11:18AM

    Mary it was all over our news bulletins yesterday and I recall it so well.

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Why run?

Monday, October 26, 2009

I was asked to write an article concerning my running for our village newsletter. This is my submission:

I was never an athlete, never thought myself capable of doing long distance running or any type of running for that matter. All that changed in 2004 when I signed up for the Race For Life and got hooked. With 6 marathons, 8 Halves, several 10 milers, countless 10ks, 5 Miles and training runs, I now say: I AM AN ATHLETE!
You might wonder why someone would brave the cold, the uncomfortable heat, brisk winds, pelting rain, early Saturday morning long runs, additional longer distances, muscle aches, bruised toenails, and all the other trophies running provides. What could possibly be the motivational force that would propel them onward day after day, mile after mile?
My journey along this trail began as a tribute to my motherís battle with Cancer and the honour of her memory. I pay her homage each time I run and remember her 2 Ĺ year battle with a disease that has probably touched all of our lives. Once I completed that race I wanted to find out just how far I could run and how strong my body was.
As if stepping stones I set myself goals of turning my run/walking outings into further and further running only distances. I began exploring the various routes available in and around my village. I thought of which hill I wanted to return on and that helped me to decide which exit path I would use. It didnít take long for me to learn much of the geography of the area as I didnít limit my excursion to just the roads. Great cross county footpaths criss-cross this beautiful area and are a joy to explore.
I began finding extensive information on internet websites, magazines, and from other runners. I was reading all things running. The Ribble Valley 10K hosted by the Blackburn Road Runners was my first race of that distance. It was freezing cold, icy and glorious! I had achieved a goal I had worked months for. So the obvious question was: Whatís next?
Again I wanted to see what I could achieve and the next logical step up would be to run a Half Marathon to celebrate a year anniversary of running. I prepared myself by entering races of shorter distances and working myself up to the 13.1miles of a Half Marathon. A blistering hot, hazy June 2005 Sunday in Blackpool was my testing ground. Despite the smouldering oppressive noontime completion, I smiled as I approached the finish line to receive my event medal. Again it was time to ponder that question: Whatís next?
Could I take that huge leap from a half marathon to a full marathon in a year? Could I celebrate my second running anniversary with a 26.2/42K mile glory run? If I truly wanted to see what I was capable of and how far I could push myself then the answer had to be YES! There would be hundreds of training miles to complete, hundreds of hours of time to prioritize for training, and hundreds of pounds to set aside for shoes, running events, clothing, assorted gear and nutritional needs. Yet even after considering all of that I eagerly signed up to run the June 2006 Edinburgh Marathon.
Preparation for Edinburgh included the Cardiff Half Marathon where I watched my husband complete his first of now eight outstanding marathons. I saw firsthand a glimpse of what 26.2 miles could do to an athleteís body; the grimace from hours on oneís feet and the intense soreness that makes simple walking up stairs a hardship. I also witnessed the immense pride of accomplishment that radiated from his face and those of the other marathoners when they crossed the long toiled for finish line. I wanted to experience that. I wanted to forever have that memory and carry it with me into the years ahead.
So it was to be; June2006 in the beautiful city of Edinburgh, on another hot and steamy June Sunday I ran with my heart the 26.2 miles of my very first marathon. Even though I prepared well, trained hard and was mentally ready, I didnít know on the day what I would experience. Although there were thousands of racers out there on the course, I was alone in my thoughts. It was me putting the miles to the road. It was me feeling the body aches and stings of sweat in my eyes. It was me that was for the first time running over the 20 mile mark. And it was me seeing an arch of deep blue balloons hovering over the finish line at the foot of Arthurís Seat beckoning me onward until I too crossed over the line; arms outstretched and tears streaming down my face. I was now and forever a Marathoner! I have the joy of replaying that moment anytime I wish.
For someone who isnít a runner it may be hard to understand the reply to the question, ďWhy would you put yourself through that again and again?Ē I could start by saying that I love travelling to cities such as Dublin, London, Edinburgh, New York, Berlin, or Boston; of meeting and/or watching elite athletes strive for perfection in their encounters . I could add that itís a wonderful hobby that my husband and I both share hence the hours we converse, plan, and support one another at various events and training. I could add that I enjoy perusing over the thousands of race/running photos we have taken and, the scrapbooks I have put together that chronicle our achievements. I could show you the dozens of event shirts, race mugs, coasters, and various other mementos that we have collected as awards for a job well done.
Those are all tangible reasons why I run, but not the real reason. For the real reason why I and perhaps many others run lies deep within us. It is a force that urges us outside, to pit ourselves against the elements, our inner thoughts, our doubts, our ambitions. To allow me to feel the exhilaration that occurs when I finally crest the hill and look to my right and see the immense expanse of the Ribble Valley. To feel the rush of wind in my face and hair as I push just a little bit more, a little bit faster, on the downhill towards my village.

I savour these moments and events. For I know that there will come a day that I wonít be physically able to do these runs. They will have become collectables to adorn my memory. But for today, I run. Because I can!

What about you? Why not lace up and make some incredible memories!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

RHYNIC 11/4/2009 8:10PM

    what a great blog. Loved it.

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JILLWILSON2102 10/27/2009 10:11AM

    Awesome story Mary!!

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NAJEAN 10/26/2009 7:25PM

    What an awesome blog entry! I just began running a couple of months ago and one day I hope to get to where you are.

You rock!

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MARKAMURKA 10/26/2009 11:19AM

    Beautiful blog. And congrats on your achievements. You are both very lucky sharing the same passion for running.

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NANCY-GIRL 10/26/2009 11:15AM

    Another awesome blog, Mary!
You inspire me.

One day, I will take that 1st jog-step of faith & transition from walker to runner again ... one day...

(ps, I read this after reading a blog about "what are you afraid of" - Indeed!)

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BRIAN36 10/26/2009 10:54AM

    The last paragraph says it all. Someday I won't be able to run. When that happens, I don't want to be there thinking, "shoulda, coulda, woulda" I want to be saying, "been there, done that".

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    Mary...it is your words and your inspiration that has helped me become the runner I am today!!! The reasons I started were very much the same was your...my race progression and training mirrored yours in so many ways!!! And although we run our training runs and races alone...you my friend are with me every day (just like my mother is with me on every run)!!! Thanks you so much for sharing your joy with us!!! I am still hoping and partiently waiting for the day we can run together!!! Love you Mary!!! MissyJ!!!

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ALEXSGIRL1 10/26/2009 5:25AM

    thanks for the great blog. you have a great way with story telling. emoticon

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MINNA72 10/26/2009 5:25AM

    You had me almost in tears reading this. I wanted to say: yes, THAT. That's why I run. Because I can. Because it makes me feel strong, capable of enduring hours of fatigue, pain and soreness. Because it gives me a pause in the hectic everyday life. Because it gives me time to think, to ponder. Because it's therapeutic.

I am training for my first marathon in June (Stockholm). I ran a half marathon a few years ago, then had two babies in quick succession, but am now back to doing what I love; running.

Thank you for this post, it was beautifully written.

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GIRLTRUCKIN 10/26/2009 5:23AM

    Great blog. I hope to be a "runner" some day...I am training for a 5K now.

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CAZ_NR_HEATHROW 10/26/2009 5:01AM

    Mary I wish I had your way with words that was amazing.

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Gotta Gear Up

Thursday, October 22, 2009

I have been slowly putting my mind into "marathon mode" these past couple of weeks. My marathon running hubby and I have decided that we plan to register for the Chicago marathon when the registration opens up in late January. I know the Marathon is a little less than a year from now but I needed something to focus on and put my mind in the right space. Well now I have even more reason to shift gears!
I am so excited I'm jumping up and down inside and just going to have to take a celebratory run today! My running club has come through for me again!!! I didn't get a place in April's 2010 Virgin London Marathon in the ballot, BUT since I got rejected from that and the club received 4 spaces, I GET ONE!!!

Yes I am a bit nutz and you might agree (esp if you read my Berlin Marathon blog account) to be so excited about putting my body through another 26.2 miles and over 500 training miles but I am like a Cheshire cat!! SOOO thrilled!

So if all goes to plan, that will be TWO marathons in 2010: London (April) and CHICAGO (Oct!)
Now, gotta go lace up and hit the road, I've got a run planned!!

  Member Comments About This Blog Post:


    Mary...I'm sooo excited that you will be running London again but a little disappointed that you will be running Chicago instead of Long Beach with me...oh, I guess I didn't mention it but I will be running the Long Beach marathon again next year...but it just happens to be the same day as Chicago!!! At least we will be running a marathon on the same day on the same continient...we are getting closer to running together!!! Smooches!!! MissyJ!!! emoticon

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RHYNIC 10/23/2009 5:05PM

    there is a bunch of road runners who are thinking of running chicago in 2010. I don't expect to make it there since I am going to New Orleans this winter. But maybe in 2011 we might be able to connect during a marathin some place in the world. gail

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JILLWILSON2102 10/22/2009 10:10AM

    emoticonMary you are a running diva!!

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CAZ_NR_HEATHROW 10/22/2009 10:05AM

    Good luck hun,

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