Wedded Bliss

Today I went to a wedding. It was sweet and beautiful and full of smiles and laughter. It went a little something like this:

Beautiful Buerge Chapel in the Pacific Palisades

Ugh too cute

My handsome date with cake in his mouth

she’s stunning

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Running On Empty

I used to despise running. In high school I thought I might be a successful runner based on the fact that my dad was an avid marathoner back in his day and still held his high school’s record for the mile. So I joined track, hoping to make him proud. I hated every minute of that sport, except for jumping off of the loft in the storage barn onto the high-jump mats. That part was awesome. But after 3 years that wasn’t even doing it for me anymore, and I quit. I didn’t run for fun again until a year and a half ago. And as it turns out, I’m not terrible. Not that you can be “bad” at running…which is one of the things that is so great about it. Anyone can run! And anyone can enjoy it! What I am referring to is the competitive side of the sport. I’m no Joan Benoit, but for not seriously training, I’ve crossed that finish line way before anyone thought I would.

And so here lies my frustration: I’ve been spoiled and running on flat roads at sea level since I began a year and a half ago. 3 weeks ago I moved to hills at 5500′.
IT IS REALLY HARD TO RUN NOW.
I have yet to log more than 6 miles in one outing, and I am running quite a bit slower than I used to. I am out of breath in minutes and exhausted for much of my jog. I feel like a diabetic chain smoker. While I have yet to puke, there has been more than one occasion where I was pretty sure I was about to. People keep telling me that the altitude is going to help me in the long run (pun maybe intended), but the fear that I can’t fully train to the best of my ability up here has me shaking in my Brooks. I am far from completely adjusted, and I have 2 races in the coming 7 weeks. My hope is to get down the hill to do a bit of training if I can, but that requires a lot of driving and a lot of time and, well, I’m just a sack of lazy. So, we will see. In the meantime, I am going to focus on the gorgeous roads I get to slog on [my new word for sloppy jogging]. No more smoggy Los Angeles streets for this girl!!

For what it’s worth, here is my Brooks endorsement: I LOVE BROOKS SO MUCH THEY ARE LIKE RUNNING ON CLOUDS. [Seriously, though, I will never run in anything else. Also, if you buy the sneaks right before the new models come out, they’re way cheaper! Bargains!]

For the first time, the first thing I see when I leave the house is not a traffic light.

The hill of death = Future thighs of steel!

The Dog Days Are Not Over

Meet Tilley

Tilley, my hermaphroditic dog, is the best and worst companion. She is the best when you want to go on a long adventure. She never stops, she keeps up, she’s happy to be out with you.
He is the worst when he sees anything that moves. Anything. A squirrel, a lizard, a duck, a leaf.

Today we saw most of those things. And it was the worst.
But I secretly still had a lot of fun.

First we stopped at the post office, where Tilley and the dog in the car next door shared a conversation I only wish I was able to decipher.

After jogging on the trail around the lake for a mile, we came across an empty beach. This is where I discovered Tilley’s motivation for swimming: ducks.

Why do dogs always look so terrified when they swim? Or is it just mine?

It is very important for all dogs to shake dry as close to their owners as possible.

Note to self: If ever I need headshots for Tilley, post-swim in the back of the car seems to be the best setting.

Royal Beauty

This morning I awoke to a coffee pot full of hot, steaming java. I was ecstatic. I stumbled down the stairs with a goofy half-assed grin on my face, whereupon I was told that I looked stunning. I am going to describe to you in detail exactly what walked down the stairs:

An oversized, self-styled (read: one day I decided to cut out a really huge neck) bright blue tshirt from freshman year of college with Super Mario on the front. Purple shorts. Hair 50% flat on my head and 50% everywhere but on my head. Unbrushed teeth. And a puffy face. (Am I the only one that wakes up with a swollen mug?)

“Like a princess.”
But I have a swollen face, I protested.
“Well if you say ‘swollen face’ fast enough, it sounds like a place. Swollenface. Now presenting – The Princess of SwollenFace!”

I am a real banjo player now!

Last night Matt and I drove into Los Angeles for Mystery Beers with the friend-family. I had some delicious brews and some delicious conversation. I then had some delicious In ‘n Out en route to the mountain and then a delicious glass of water upon our return at 2am.

I woke up this morning with nothing pressing to do except get my phone service reinstated. See, when you’re unemployed, you have to pick and choose what you pay for each month. Last month, I did not choose AT&T. Thanks to Gloria, however, we sorted things out this morning and now my mother can rest easy that I was not in fact attacked by a pack of coyotes. I’m just poor.

Next on my list of Things I Must Do Today was to go on Facebook. There I sat for a few minutes until I stumbled across the Avett Brothers’ performance on Jimmy Fallon last night. I just realized two of my favorite late-night hosts are named Jimmy.

I watched the video and decided it was time to learn the banjo. About 5 minutes into my self-lesson, I stood up and returned the banjo to its stand. About 2 minutes later I decided I was being really lame and so I picked it back up. After an hour and a half of intense youtube lessons, I am now proud to announce that I can play the first 10 seconds of an Avett Brothers song, with definitely notable pauses to switch my fingers into the correct positions, of course. That’ll do it for this morning, though. My left fingers are sore. Right now they are hot and kind of burning.

Anyway, due to the fact that I have weird banjo hickeys on my chest, dents in my fingers, and I now know how to use a capo, I have dubbed myself a real banjo player.

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my life, my cat

I just left the city and moved to the mountains.

This town is beautiful, quiet, and it smells like earth rather than car fumes and street-cleaning dust. People here are friendly and accommodating. They stop their cars when you want to cross the street, they take the time to learn your name and explain exactly how driving in the snow works up here, and when you are standing in the middle of the grocery store skeptically holding that miniature basil plant, they pause to let you know that theirs has been living on their windowsill for the past 3 years.

Living here is a dream. And therefore I should feel like this:

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But instead, around 1pm each day, I find myself feeling like this:

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I need a job. I am convinced that once my life has a bit more purpose (and money) to it that I will be able to FULLY appreciate this amazing place we live in. But for now, I have never had to work so hard to enjoy my free time. All play and no work makes me…insane. I am learning that about myself. Today, for example, I spent the majority of my time upstairs in the loft next to the pool table (see?? dream.) watching 4 episodes of Gossip Girl and sweating into the faux-leather couch from Goodwill that I made Matt drag up the mountain.

I love it here and would never give it up to go back to the city that stole my soul, I just…need something to do.

Thus, a blog was born.