Thursday, December 17, 2009

Wasted Time

Last night I watched the most anticipated SYTYCD season finale (Yey Russell!!!) As part of the show, JLo performed a song about her shoes. Literally. For four minutes, she sang the same line about putting on her shoes (in her famous three note range). That's four minutes I will never get back. Yes, I am bitter.

-- Post From My iPhone

Location:University St,Seattle,United States

Monday, November 23, 2009

Holidays already. Really?

Happy Thanksgiving week, everyone! Can't believe the holidays are already here. And WHY do we say that every year? I guess as you get older, time passes more quickly. This year, I am amazed by a few things:

  • How ecstatic I was to see my son skip from house to house on Halloween, dressed as an adorable Harry Potter.
  • How annoyed I was to see several houses with Christmas lights on days after Halloween.
  • How crazy the world is right now (no explanation necessary. Think economy, random shootings, desperate people... you get the picture).

Things to contemplate... small town living, fresh starts, the importance of family.

Yeah, I am a sap around the holidays. We'll stuff ourselves on Thursday, decorate for Christmas on Friday and I get to run another marathon on Sunday. Yey!

Peace to all.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

What Matters

think I've always had a pretty good head on my shoulders. I mean... I forget where my car keys are, I sometimes forget where I'm going and head in the wrong direction. But when it comes to what matters most, I've got that down pat.

Sometimes though, we get caught up in the "stuff" of life. The expensive toys, trips, goodies. It's easy to do, especially when those around you are also caught up in the same stuff. Yeah okay, I'm being vague. But lately, life has reminded me that much of that stuff really doesn't matter. What matters is the family that surrounds me, the light in my five-year-old's eyes when he reads a book or wins a game, the hug from my husband when we've both had a difficult day. Stuff can't do that for you. I've also been reminded, by said five-year-old, that you can derive immense pleasure from the simplest things in life. The color of fall leaves, stars on a clear night, the innumerable uses of scotch tape.

Stuff doesn't matter. Love, family, fall colors, hugs. That's what matters. Who needs the car keys? For that matter, who needs the car? I think I'll go for a walk.

Thursday, September 3, 2009

First Day of Kindergarten!

We are proud, exhausted and smiling like crazy.

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Blog Fail/Summer Vacation!

I twitter, I Facebook, sometimes I even email, text or (gasp) pick up the phone! What I haven't been doing is blogging... obviously. Sorry. We had a WONDERFUL vacation in July. Two weeks on the road. Just Blaine, Brandon and me. Some people wondered why we'd choose to spend so much time in the car. Let me tell you, it was the best bonding experience we've ever had as a family. This vacation rivaled any of our Hawaiian trips, Disneyland, San Diego. It was the perfect mix of camping, hotels, staying with our wonderful cousins and then camping with them. I apologize in advance for not including all the photos I'd like (esp. of our Colorado family. As I blog this, I only have access to a small portion of our vacation photos).

Our itinerary looked like this:

First night: Drove to Spokane, stayed in a hotel

First full day: Drove all the way to Yellowstone and arrived after dark because we missed a turn in the park and took the scenic route all the way around the park. Oh well!

First three days: Camped in Yellowstone. Amazing experience. Saw so much more than I could possibly post. Wild animals, beautiful scenery, geysers, streams, waterfalls, more wildlife. At one point, the three of us pulled over, took off our shoes and just sat on a river bank, soaking our feet. Not a soul around for miles. It was incredible.

Off to Colorado: Via a night spent in Casper, WY. Interesting place. Visited my first Walmart. 'nuff said.

Arrived in Colorado: Spent two nights with our fabulous cousins in Erie (near Denver/Boulder). They showed us Rocky Mtn National Park, among other things. Probably one of the most beautiful places in the country! Climbed around at 14,000 ft elevation, saw the Stanley Hotel (Stephen King fans will know what that means).

Steamboat Springs/Steamboat Lake: Traveled here with our cousins (Julianne, Jim and the boys - Forest and Harrison). Spent a wonderful day with Julianne's mom (my dad's cousin) and and Poppa Russ at their ranch. It is here that Brandon earned the nickname "shooter" for his newly discovered target shooting abilities. Hmmm. From here we traveled to Steamboat Lake and camped for two nights. I have to say, Jim is the BEST. CAMPING COOK. EVER. Can we always take him with us camping? The dude's amazing in the 'kitchen.' They also rented a boat and we spent a nice day on the lake, catching big, beautiful trout.

Jackson Hole: It was hard to say goodbye to Colorado and our family, but we headed off to Jackson Hole and stayed at a nice little cabin on a creek. We visited the town, took the gondola up to the top of the mountain and watched hangliders literally jump off the mountain. Amazing! Of course, Brandon remembers the 'bungie trampoline' more than anything. Kid has no fear.

Teton National Park: And we thought Yellowstone was beautiful. Freakin' incredible. Just incredible.

Big Sky Montana: Pretty cool. We were winding down at this point. Almost at the two week mark and we decided to cancel our Glacier National Park camping and head home a bit early. We'll do Glacier another time.

Thursday, July 9, 2009

Blogging on the road

My sister suggested I blog from my phone while on our famous Griswold Family Vacation! So this is a test to see if I am actually technically saavy enough to do this. Geek alert!

-- Post From My iPhone

Wednesday, July 8, 2009

26.2 Miles Down and on to a Vacation

My sister gently reminded me that I have not blogged since before the marathon. So here are the highlights and lowlights from the Inaugural Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon as I remember them (some things I just block from my mind):

  • The picture to the right is a large bald eagle that calmly watched the 25,000 runners streaming by.
  • I think I trained well enough, but trail running doesn't translate well to reinforced concrete
  • Reinforced concrete is HARDER than normal roads
  • Running with 25,000 people is freakin energizing!
  • There were no bears on the route
  • The bands were fun
  • I had a sinus infection
  • I took a new antibiotic
  • Said antibiotic didn't agree with me and gave me stomach cramps
  • Said antibiotics made me dehydrated which resulted in muscle cramps
  • Salt packets from a bicycling medic solve muscle cramps
  • The Alaska Way Viaduct is veeery long
  • Completing a second marathon felt awesome
  • Seattle stepped up for this event!
  • At the end, ice was my friend and so was beer
This Friday, our little family is taking off on our Griswold Family Vacation... Yellowstone, Boulder, Steamboat Lake, Jackson, Grand Tetons, Big Sky and Glacier (pretty much in that order). It's the perfect blend of camping, staying with cousins, hotels and cabins. We are beside ourselves with excitement. This will be the first family vacation where we aren't flying somewhere or sticking to a certain schedule. If I can figure out how to blog from my iPhone, I'll post vaca updates here. I'll also be posting photos and status updates on Facebook at

Hope everyone is enjoying their summer so far!

Friday, June 26, 2009

26.2 miles with 25,000 of my closest friends

Tomorrow is the inaugural Seattle Rock and Roll Marathon. 26.2 miles of rock and roll, crowds, runners, tired legs, sore muscles, blisters and bleary-eyed smiles. Okay... that's just my personal experience. But... I'm looking forward to it. Okay, right now I am a nervous nelly and thinking about tomorrow makes me want to puke. I am looking forward to mile seven. That's about when the jitters go away and I find my groove. The crowd will be somewhat thinned out by then and my brain will find that happy place where I flit from thought to thought as my feet and legs take on a life of their own and just follow the course.

My mom and sister will be at the finish line cheering me on. They can walk on the ferry and then walk to the finish line to see me. I let Blaine off the hook because driving into the city and finding parking during an event of this size would be a sheer nightmare for him. There's a live band every mile along the 26 mile course and a huge celebration at the end, followed by a concert at Marymoor Park. I'm thinking that the one thing that will get me through the last three miles will be the free, cold beer at the end. Seriously, a cold beer at the end of a run like that is AWESOME.

I am incredibly proud of my friends Randi and Janet for running the half marathon, their first ever. They've trained hard (harder than me I think!) and they will be awesome. I am sorry I won't be at the finish line to cheer them on, since their finish line is my halfway point. I expect to see pictures, gals! The weather is supposed to be sunny and mid 70's. I am bummed about that. I was hoping for clouds and a few sprinkles. I run MUCH slower in the sun.

Okay, off to obsess over the course map and elevation chart a bit more.

Happy Friday!


Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Adventures in Running or... How Not to Piss Off Momma Bear in the Woods

I ran my favorite Beaver Lake Preserve trail loop this morning. It's a 1.2 mile loop through some really nice woods. I've always considered it a safe loop because it doesn't go too deep into the woods and you can see the backyard of a house and a golf course on part of it.

I was on my fifth and final loop when, through the music in my head phones I heard a very large snarl/growl. Right in front of me (about eight feet away at the most) was a black bear and her cub! DAMN! Thought I was a goner. The cub scampered up the tree right in front of me and the momma bear ran behind it but didn't leave of course, because she couldn't leave her baby. I slowly backed away then bushwacked through the woods to someone's backyard (I just happened to be at the part of the trail that was near someone's yard). Then I SPRINTED down their private road to the Beaver Lake road and made my way back to my car. My legs were all bloodied from bushwacking and my hands were shaking so bad I couldn't dial my phone.

Okay, so chances are slim I would have been attacked but when you are alone in the middle of the woods and you piss momma bear off, you never know, and there's no one around to help you!

So, I learned a couple of things from this experience:

1. When your life is in danger, your actions DO revert to Hollywood slow motion.
2. When your life is in danger, parts of your life DO flash before your eyes.
3. When you are running from a bear, you will not feel the pain of blackberry bushes shredding the skin on your legs until long after you are safe (and then you will be puzzled by the blood all over your knees. It will take several moments to put the pieces of that puzzle together).
4. You will definitely forget how to dial your iPhone.
5. You will sound like an idiot when you talk to the Department of Fish and Wildlife (Yes, I know now that there is a Website that documents recent bear activity and I know now that there were bear sightings in that area recently, but I'd just passed a woman and her poodle, for God's sake. I assumed it was SAFE, officer!)
6. Running with headphones in the woods is pretty stupid. Running without a bear bell and bear spray is even more stupid. Yes I own those items, Officer Wildlife, Yes I will bring them with me next time. Thank you Officer Wildlife.

I love wildlife and understand when I am in the woods, I am running in their territory, so I'm not at all incensed at this encounter. Just feeling a tad stupid for literally stumbling upon and scaring a momma bear and her cub. I DO know better than that.

I guess the silver lining would be that by the time I made my way back to the road, I had to run an extra mile or so to get back to my car. So maybe I can skip my run tomorrow?

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Does Writing Euphoria Exist?

So, I'm training for my second full marathon. It's easier this time (knock on big ol' slab of wood). My goal is to train injury free... meaning no tendinitis, sore knee, pulled calf muscle, etc. etc. All my long runs are done on trails in the woods, which has significantly helped to keep all the aches and pains at bay. I've also finally reached what some runners call "running euphoria." No, I don't hallucinate and see margaritas up and down the trail while I run (although that would be great!) But I have reached a point where I am no longer breathing hard and feel like I can run forever, or until my legs collapse. It's really quite cool. I can, after an 18 mile run, stop and NOT be out of breath whatsoever! Of course my body is exhausted, but it's still really, really cool.

So my question is... does writing euphoria exist? Can I reach a point where I can write and write and write and not become mentally exhausted? And how do I reach that euphoria? 'Cuz seriously, I'd sign up... pronto.

In other news, Max is doing very well. We are treating his Cushing's Disease and he has his energy back, is happy and doesn't want to drink 50 gallons of water a day. Our son graduates from preschool in June. They do caps and gowns and everything. I think we are all seriously ready for a vacation. Two weeks after the marathon (it's on June 27) we are taking a two week vacation. This time no planes involved. Pure road trip, which should be fun. Of course I'll bring the laptop and get some writing done, and probably blog about the sites. Yellowstone, Glacier, Grand Tetons, Jackson Hole, and all things Colorado. Yey!

Tuesday, April 7, 2009

My Name is Ingrid, and I'm a Facebook Addict

It started out innocently enough.

"Hey Ingrid," an overseas friend IM'd one day. "You should sign up for Facebook so we can keep track of each other more easily."

"Really? I'm not sure I have time to follow a new program. I can barely keep my blog updated," I replied, knowing that, in fact, my blog was NOT updated.

"You don't have to update it that often. Just every once in awhile. C'mon, it'll be fun."

Thus started my descent into Facebook addiction Sure, initially I only checked it a couple times a week. Added some cutsey photos and throw away status updates. It was kinda fun. Then along came the Facebook Blackberry app. I could update my status anywhere! The ferry line, my office, the grocery story. EVERYONE could know that I was buying red grapes instead of green, or that I was stuck in a traffic jam because a soccer mom's texting while driving didn't work out the way she wanted and she ended up rear ending her PTSA president.

But still, I had CONTROL. I could Facebook or not Facebook, I could stop anytime. I didn't NEED to do it. Then along came the iPhone, and with it, the iPhone Facebook App. Mobile uploads were a must. And I just HAD to know what drink I was, if I was truly a Pacific Northwesterner, and if I could be a shoe, what shoe would I be...

At some point... and I can't even remember when... my husband stopped complaining about my Facebook time and started his own account. I hear addicts can bring their loved ones down. Now we sit side by side in the evening, playing Facebook scrabble on our laptops. In this economy though, is that wrong?

Really, it's not so bad, being a Facebook addict. I've reconnected with classmates, become Check Spellingcloser to relatives I barely knew growing up, kept updated on friends overseas, and become a much better Scrabble player.

Now, about my Twitter habit.

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Another Marathon, Max Update and Silly Family Stuff

I am nuts, but I've registered for another full marathon. I guess it keeps me disciplined. And I still can't get over that I gained 15 lbs right after my last marathon. Oy.

Max had another complete round of tests last week. The chest rads and ultrasounds show he is still cancer free (YEY!!!!!!!!!) but he does have Cushing's we'll now be treating that and I'm not sure about the future of his agility career. I know he's ten years old, but he LOVES agility and LOVES running with me... so I will be sad if he can't do these things. Right now he has energy and is happy and jumps around and plays with his toys (and steals Brandy's hedgehog at every opportunity).

My five-year-old's favorite pastime, now that he's reading, is to read EVERY sign. Street signs, signs at the grocery store, etc. It's pretty cool but tends to make our trips out and about much, much longer. I don't want to discourage his reading but dang, Costco has ALOT of signs.

I just have to say, that if I had to pick one type of food to eat for the rest of my life, it would, without a doubt, be chinese food. Every. Day. Yum.

Thursday, March 5, 2009

Hey Seattle

Yeah, it snows. Get over it and drive. Sheesh.

Also, I'm wondering if I should have a black out day for Facebook, Twitter and blogging. Now with the iPhone, I am totally sucked in! I need a break! Besides, we are into serious TV right now. Lost, Amazing Race, Survivor (guilty pleasure), Hell's Kitchen, Grey's Anatomy.

Oh, and then there's the writing... and work...and the family. Can we had more hours to the day please? I may need sleep at some point.

Thursday, February 26, 2009

iPhone Apps, Vista Print and Twitter

Yeah, I tried to post this before, via iPhone. Didn't work. So, what's your favorite iPhone app? What is the biggest time waster (other than flashlight and level)? heh.

Also, how can Vista Print stay in business when they are offering me loads of FREE stuff every day? Seriously, this keeps me awake at night.

One more thing. I am WAY too into Twitter these days. It's just good fun. Did you know you can follow famous people's Tweets? Ashton Kutcher and Mrs. Kutcher crack me up. I found this Web site useful if you're just starting out:

Back to my Tweets, I mean my Facebook, I mean my...uh...WORK. That's it, WORK!

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Just Busy Writing

Yeah, I know mom... I am not blogging enough. I hear you! I just finished revising my synopsis for book #2 and wrote an outline of a synopsis for book #3. Where is book #1, you ask? My fabulous agent has it in submissions... so I will wait... and write... and wait.

By the way, will spring EVER get here? Seriously... I love snow but I can't run in it, can't drive my convertible in it and generally can't visualize spring when it is covering my garden.

Tuesday, January 20, 2009

A New Day

An excerpt from Barack H. Obama's inauguration speech (near the end). Today is a GOOD day. Today I am excited.

"So let us mark this day with remembrance, of who we are and how far we have traveled. In the year of America's birth, in the coldest of months, a small band of patriots huddled by dying campfires on the shores of an icy river. The capital was abandoned. The enemy was advancing. The snow was stained with blood. At a moment when the outcome of our revolution was most in doubt, the father of our nation ordered these words be read to the people:

"Let it be told to the future world...that in the depth of winter, when nothing but hope and virtue could survive...that the city and the country, alarmed at one common danger, came forth to meet [it]."

America. In the face of our common dangers, in this winter of our hardship, let us remember these timeless words. With hope and virtue, let us brave once more the icy currents, and endure what storms may come. Let it be said by our children's children that when we were tested we refused to let this journey end, that we did not turn back nor did we falter; and with eyes fixed on the horizon and God's grace upon us, we carried forth that great gift of freedom and delivered it safely to future generations."

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Enough Already

Ummm, it's Jan. 15...take your christmas lights DOWN already. And if you don't have time? For the love of God, at least don't turn them ON every night.'s been almost three weeks.

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Not Blogless in Seattle

My own mom has accused me of such :-) Well, we had a two week long snowstorm (totally unheard of for Seattle) and I had revisions to do. Oh, and then there was Christmas, New Year's, my son's 5th was in there somewhere too.

But now, on to 2009! I have high hopes for this year, globally and locally because yes, I am an optimist.

Counting down the days until Jan. 20. Are you?

Here's a picture of my pups romping in the white stuff :-)