Tuesday, December 20, 2011

Versatile Blogger?

So I must finally be making it into the "inner circle" of bloggers as I received my first "tag" the other day.  Susan from Rock.River.Run. tagged me for the Versatile Blogger Award (a major award no less - nod to The Christmas Story here).

I'm not sure I fit the category of "versatile", but since the only thing I'm supposed to do is post random things about myself - and given I usually don't struggle with writing about this topic - we'll give it a go!  She didn't assign me particular number of random items or categories of random items so I'll just divvy it up the best I can think of.

Random Things About Me (aka "Deep Thoughts"):
  1. I struggle with identifying myself by my roles.  I actually spent time with a life coach last year about this topic.  If you ask me about me, I tell you that I am a mom, a wife, an engineer, a friend, etc.  But that isn't really me - just the roles that I play.  He challenged me to think of myself in how I would want others to describe me: "Honest" (though often to a fault), "High Integrity", "Fun", "Generous", "Loving", "Passionate" (scary, but my first thought is that I'm passionate about my work - but hopefully my husband would say I'm passionate in just about everything I do...ahem).
  2. I really miss my dad.  I'm glad he is no longer in pain and watching him be sick and die was the most brutally awful thing I've been through.  But I miss his advice and counsel.  I miss the way he constantly teased me about not becoming a lawyer.  I miss the way he told stories.  I miss the fact that he always tied the appropriate lure on my fishing pole (and never really taught me which one to use when and for what).  I miss his mustache (I called it my caterpiller when I was little).  I miss the way he pushed me to excel (though I don't miss feeling like I never lived up to his expectations).  I miss the way his hair was so thick and soft even in his mid-60's.  So many things.  I think that as I'm finally nearing the end of what has become termed as the "probate nightmare", I'm finally starting to really grieve his loss.
  3. I sometimes think I take being a mom for granted.  I was moved to tears by another blogger's post about not being one and how it pained her that she never found the right guy and the right time to have children.  First, I found the right guy the week before my 18th birthday and have been with him ever since.  He is a truly awesome dad and I am very blessed to have been married to him since the day after my 22nd birthday.  But I think I get so caught up in the day to day craziness of juggling four people's wants and needs that I forget to take time to truly appreciate how fantastic these two beings are in my life.  I remember not enjoying parts of their early years - those years are just tough for everyone and I think I had other issues compounding my difficulty in coping with it all.  I can't believe I've been a mom for nearly 11 years.  It has gone by SO fast.  And, God willing, I may only have about that many more with one or both of them living at home.  Then I will have to figure out what to do with all that space that their absence will leave.
  4. I really do think this year has been life changing.  I actually felt a little itchy to run (well, ok - jog/walk) a week or so ago when I hadn't gone for a few days.  Can that be real?  My sister corrected me the other day saying that I was the one that suggested signing up for the tri in WI - that she didn't coerce me into it, but had just mentioned that she was doing it with her husband and a bunch of his family.  I'll still "blame" her a little for planting the idea.  Not sure why setting a big hairy ass goal was so important to me, but I am pleased with what it has turned into and am looking forward to 2012's BHAGs.
  5. How's this for totally random (and less deep):  My next "big" trip is to Las Vegas at the end of February to be a speaker at the International Erosion Control Association Environmental Connection (EC'12).  This is an international conference.  It will be the first time that I am speaking to more than a regional group.  My presentation is "anticipated to be popular" so they scheduled me to speak TWICE!  It is entitled "Stormwater Pollution Prevention: Beyond the Dirt" - Pretty exciting stuff, eh? LOL  Four days with no husband or kids.  Now THAT is exciting - no marathon with puking or anything, but you know.  Looking forward to the warmer temps too as Feb tends to be "colder than a witch's tit" here in MO.
OK, so now I have to try to think of folks to tag.  Is this like those email chain letters where people get annoyed?  I don't know if I am enough in the "inner circle" to actually get people to do this.  Hmm...I loved some of the recent spins on this sort of thing that other people have done.  So here goes:

I want to hear at least 5 random "deep thoughts" from the following folks:

1. Mike at Mike's Triathlon Journey (because I love that he stole my Santa hat idea for his JBH run)
2. Kate at Superkate (because I love that she has ridden bike trails near my house though we've never met - I'm betting 2012 we'll fix this)
3. Keith at Keith's Odyssey to Planet Fitness (because he was the first person to ever comment on my blog and it totally made my year)
4. Christi at Pedestrian Runner (because she hasn't been writing enough lately and I miss her)
5. Big Daddy Diesel (because he posts the best weekly ramblings in the blogosphere)

Really hoping to learn something deep (or at the very least that they write something random and attribute it to me asking them to).  Thanks, Susan!

Today's notes in brief:  I made a new soup recipe that was "ok".  It called for canned chicken and my house stunk all day from it.  Next time I'll use fresh, but with some tweaks it could be "better than ok".  I ate it for breakfast and lunch (it did have veggies in it).  Dinner was tater tot casserole (husband's pick).  I was seriously sore today from last night's workout.  Made me wish I had a foam roller or The Stick.  I did finally go join the Y so tomorrow I will drag my ass over there and get in some mileage of some kind (though the stupid pool is down for maintenance through next Tue - the #1 reason I joined - grr!)  I hope I can get my family going regularly so we can all be more active.  Almost done with my Christmas shopping and wrapping.  I used to never cut it this close.  Of course, I also used to do long (embarrassing even?) newsletters and send them with cute photo cards.  Standards have been lowered.


  1. I was your first? Oh, wait, that didn't come out right. I really was the first commenter on your blog? I wonder how I did that. Anyways, 5 deep thoughts. I will let that gestate a little bit. Who knows what could come out? Those who know me are quivering in anticipation. Or horror.

  2. "thanks" for tagging me :-) (I'll work it in over the holidays). I guess I deserve it since I did totally steal the hat idea from you. When I got back from my run my wife said "why is that hat all wet?". Umm, because I wore it running in the woods?

    Very cool this year has been life changing for you. Also cool you are presenting at a conference! Curious what your thoughts are on climate change. I'm hoping to bike all winter in the future :-).

  3. Thanks for calling me out! I will post this morning!

  4. Regarding your comment in my blog on veggies, I'll do a post on veggie recipes in the near future. I have some really simple things I do that everyone I cook for loves, so I should be able to help. I like to document recipes for myself anyway.

  5. Ooh, I love doing these! :)

    I'm sure we'll manage to meet this summer. :) I used to have issues with identity. Like, if you asked me about myself, it would be I'm a teacher, or X's mom, or Y's sister/daughter/wife/etc. What do you like to do? "uhhhh...I like to read...". Pretty much my whole image of myself was defined in terms of someone else. Running and riding have really changed that and made me feel more alive and myself than in a long time.

    I'm with you on the kids, too. I had my oldest at 19, so I've been raising kids my entire adult life. Sometimes it takes hearing about someone else's fertility struggles to make me appreciate how easily my children came to me. My struggle was in how it changed my life and how difficult it was to be a young, poor mother.

    Your conference (if not necessarily the topic, lol) sounds like a fun trip!

    I'll try and get this done tomorrow. We're wrapping presents tonight...and I'm still not done shopping. Which is NOT anything new, unfortunately.

  6. Posted my Deep Thoughts. http://keithsodyssey.blogspot.com/2011/12/deep-thoughts.html

  7. Haha, thanks for playing along with me! Sorry I'm just now following up here - been a hectic, travel filled holiday season :)