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Camping…do you love it or hate it?

I have always joked I will hike all day long with you straight to the door of a Holiday Inn. I like bathrooms. Bathrooms and showers.
That’s not really a joke, I really do like bathrooms and showers.

Oh man did I want my hair washed.

Lesson #1…dry shampoo. Why…WHY did I not think of dry shampoo?
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There’s really no help for the restroom situation. I have a disease that requires clean normal bathrooms to maintain  any sense of comfort and dignity.
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It makes for great small talk.

So on that note…let’s discuss the pros and cons of camping:

Pros:
um…Colorado. duh…

Great hiking!
Get away from the city
Mostly no electronics… (my phone had some limited service for which I was grateful. I don’t love the #noscreens trend. #buckingthesystem)
family time
fishing
#greatoutdoors #alldaylong
new experiences
pretty sure most of that is redundant and boils down to Colorado is awesome and that’s reason enough.

Cons:
the bathrooms (a polite word for them. yuck yuck yuck). 
You need to limit what you carry in
Bears (you can’t have anything but clothing at your campsite. Nothing. Not even a bottle of water. Everything has to be               packed up to a bear proof food lockers)
It’s so very very cold at night and in the morning
the dirt in the tent which can be unavoidable sometimes (we had Malachi with us)
no shower (that didn’t bother me but…my hair. Oh man my hair)
and really…sleeping on the ground isn’t comfortable…those pads aren’t fabulous. They say they are but they aren’t.                       Don’t take mine though…it’s better than nothing. LOL
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Eleven Mile State Park Review
This is our experience with Eleven Mile State Park.  The good the bad and the ugly. Overall I would say we really had a great time but I don’t want to gloss over the unfriendly parts of it.

Shaughnessy made the reservation online but I’ve done a quick trial and it seemed fairly user friendly. The cost is $18 a night plus a $10 fee for the first day registration because they can. So for two days it’s $46. A reasonable price for sure.

We reserved two back country sites and they were very near the water and the water sites were an oasis. It was so beautiful. The site says the back country camp sites can be 1/2 mile to up to 3/4 of a mile from the parking lot. They had very easy trails to follow, there were restrooms (so gross but I’ve seen worse) and of course the bear proof food lockers. Those were all up at the top of the hill from the campsite. It may not be the favorite way to camp but it’s safe and they go out of their way to provide these options so you can safely camp there.

Sean and I went early to get the lay of the land and we were glad we did because we couldn’t freakin’ find the site to save our lives. In the end this was to our benefit because it was kind of a hidden site and we weren’t bothered by other campers.  The first site we got to had the previous campers name still on the reservation stick and number of the site. It also had trash all over it. The final straw was a small pile of little chipmunk corpses under a tree. Like…five of them. This did not look like an animal did it, it definitely looked human and it was pretty awful. We were horrified and refused to stay at this campsite. We traveled next door to the secluded nearby site that did happen to have our name on it. This site was much better (and pretty gorgeous) however it also had some trash in it. Considering the high bear warnings everywhere it was concerning. We cleaned up the small bits in the second campsite, the worst part being (TMI here) a used feminine hygiene product. Yeah, that was tough to clean up but it also called the bears.  And I didn’t need my grandson to see it.
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grossgrossgross

Knowing someone comes by and changes out the names for the sites…it’s pretty disappointing they don’t do a quick sweep and clean up trash there. It wouldn’t take anything to get the names of the people that were there before and charge them a trash fee on their credit card. Put that in large letters on the website as they are checking out so they know it’s going to be there. If I have to acknowledge a box before I can “pay now” you can bet I read it. When people pay money they are more inclined to behave accordingly.

Our neighbors included college kids  on one side and a family on the other. The college kids were there with beer and a need to socialize. They didn’t really bother me but I know they kept Shaughnessy and Adam up with their talking. The family on the other side kept all their stuff at their campsite encouraging bear activity. They also had two dogs who were sometimes on the leash and barked if they saw you. They rarely saw us so that was fine.

I’m actually pretty scared of dogs and on the last day when I went up to use the restroom one of their dogs rushed me and jumped on me.  When this happened I freaked completely out and screamed my ass off. The owner gave a “sorry” in that “I’m only half sorry” kind of tone that says I’m making way too big of a deal about it and then she insisted loud and terse that “he’s friendly..he’s not going to hurt you.”.  You have to say that like you’re irritated with me. ha. She clearly was. I had some minor scratches running down my legs (I was wearing shorts) and I was shaken up. Again, people that feel like they don’t have to follow the rules. We had Malachi with us and he was on a leash 99.9% of the time. If he wasn’t he was in the tent. We were always completely aware of him.

We would totally go back to this campground. We liked it a lot. The upsides definitely outweighed the bad and no place is going to be perfect.
EDIT:
We passed probably ten campsites and they were clean and beautiful and just as perfect locations.  And every campsite we hiked around seemed clean and beautiful and totally up to standards. Of the probably twenty plus campers in our area I would say there were the two who were slightly difficult and all the others were quiet and polite.  I do not believe you will always run into this. I actually believe the opposite is true. I would definitely not judge camping by our run in at this one campsite. And we will totally go back to this campground and we want the same campsite even…it was lovely, secluded and so close to the water and fishing. It was perfect. We just ask for better monitoring of the campsites so everyone gets to walk into clean beautiful campsites and not what Sean and I walked into.


Mountain Quotes | Looking for some inspiration? Check out this mountain quotes article to inspire you to move and go on an adventure
this is so me.
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Run on…

 

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There was no warm fire but otherwise…it had everything promised.

We got back from camping today. Yes, you read that right. I went camping. And I survived.

I know. I haven’t been camping since MT was like..5 years old. MT. The Marine.

Yeah, that was a long time ago. Don’t remind me.

We went to Eleven Mile State Park and it was really beautiful. We chose a back country camp site which required a half mile hike to get to it. We took Malachi with us and I think if we had known the full situation we might not have. He’s older now and has a harder time with the hike in and the cold at night.  It was very hot during the day and it was pretty freaking cold at night. He struggles with the cold so we would bundle him into the tent and try and keep him warm. He did okay though did have a pretty good time. He chased chipmunks, played in the lake, fell in the lake totally upside down-legs straight up (that was hilarious and scary) and slept in the tent like he owned it.

The trail to the tent was pretty technical. It wasn’t difficult but it was technical and I would not take heavy coolers or strollers to get to it. We saw both of those things happen.

We had no idea it was so much of a task to get back into the campsite so none of us were prepared but we were more prepared than other people and we had four grown adults to pack stuff back and a six year old who could walk on his own. Reluctantly but he could.

Once we got back there and settled in with tents up and things put where they need to be we had time to really recognize where we were and how lucky we were to have this place.

By the end of the weekend we had completely fallen in love with the place, it was so secluded and beautiful and just what we needed. I take that back…there was a fire ban so we couldn’t have a fire but other than that…it was perfectly lovely. We ate s’mores. We drank wine. Okay, they drank wine. I watched them drink wine. We laughed a LOT. Theboy explored and fished and played and got dirty and was a boy camping which is what is supposed to happen. It was a really great weekend.

I did not run. I hiked a lot the first and second day and got my time in but running would prove to be too difficult.  There wasn’t a really great place to run that wasn’t a direct trail to someone else’s campsite. I figured that would be awkward. The rain poured the second afternoon and by the third morning even my second pair of shoes were wet so I just gave up on the whole running thing and called it good. I have three layers of dirt on me at least. I’ve used the campground facilities more times than I ever wanted to in my whole life (gross gross gross) and oh my gosh I was cold.

Camping.

My next post I’ll talk about the camping a little bit more. This post was a good “oh my gosh look how beautiful it is” post and also..you can totally be jealous. We passed probably twenty campgrounds at least on the way up to this one. Welcome to Colorado. I’d like to say this is special but this is just us on a regular day. We’re always gorgeous.


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Run on…

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Rumors of my death have been greatly exaggerated…

Wild ponies have inhabited Assateague Island for hundreds of years. Some have suggested that the wild ponies of Assateague trace their origin to horses released to forage on the Island by early settlers. However, the evidence strongly sugests that they are the descendants of the survivors of a Spanish galleon which wrecked off the coast of Assateague. This story, which has been passed from generation to generation on Chincoteague Island, is stronger than fiction. source

More history of the Chincoteague ponies…

When I was little I read this book called Misty of Chincoteague. There was actually a series but this was the first. It’s a true story based on the ponies of Chincoteague Island. I loved it immediately. I loved the idea there was a pony island and these beautiful ponies lived there wild and free. It made me so happy and like all little kids, I used to dream I’d get to go visit the island.

The book was written in 1947 so that dates me a bit (not too much, I was born twenty years later) but I still loved it even with its age.

When we decided to go to Virginia I somehow got a twinge of…I wonder??  And I pulled up Google to see if Chincoteague Island was anywhere near where MT was stationed. It was four hours away.

Four hours was totally driving distance OR it could be really really far away depending on who you’re asking. MT is definitely up for an adventure and didn’t hesitate. He dove right in and said we could totally go.
~~~~~
Day 3 started  innocently enough. I threw a quick dress on and some sandals with a little heel because I was going to be riding in the car instead of walking everywhere. It was super comfortable and easy.
I chose to ride in the back seat, I’m shorter and I figure for long distances it’s just more comfortable for the tall people to be in the front.
If you guys recall, Sean plays a game called Ingress. In DC it’s an opportunity for new portals and whatnot (I kind of know what I’m talking about and kind of not). Just off base there was a trail where they were going to go “just a little ways on the trail, just a few feet” and I said okay…no problem. I’ll just stay in the truck.

I mean I’m in my dress and little sandals. Who goes hiking in that??
So I stayed in the backseat, turned myself so my feet were up on the seat and I was leaning against the door and I played on my phone. MT left the truck running for air conditioning and I waited. and waited. and waited.
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they were gone like…a half an hour (that’s a long time). While they were gone there was a woman standing in front of the truck for a while on her phone. It was kind of random and I watched her for a minute but whatever. I just went back and forth. Phone…random woman. Phone. Random woman. Eventually she left and I stopped caring.

Nearly a half an hour later MT comes back without Sean. He’s sitting there waiting with me and a police officer pulls up with a base MP. He comments that they aren’t here for us. Then they walk up to the truck…

“Maybe they ARE here for us”, he says…

The officer looks in the truck and says, “nevermind. We got a report of a truck with someone lying down in the back. We check these things out to make sure there aren’t any dead bodies but everyone seems fine here”.

THE CHICK ON THE PHONE

Yes. The chick on the phone who ACTUALLY LOOKED at me. I LOOKED at her. I WATCHED her on the phone with the cops. What a twit. I was leaning against the door and my feet were up on the seat but I could see straight out the front window and I could see her on her phone! What did she think I was doing? Head up…head down…head up…looking at her. We LOOKED at each other.

I can’t even. Seriously.

He took MT’s information so he could have it for his report and then he and the base MP left. So…

that was exciting.

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You can imagine Sean’s confusion when he came back to us with all the police cars. Ha. I always was a trouble maker.
~~~~~
We left from there to head to the island and things got better from there. I mean, they would have to. I was dead and then I wasn’t. It was tragic and then it wasn’t.

I died and then I didn’t.

Reports of my death and all that…
It took four hours and LOTS of heavy traffic but we eventually got to the island and then I really did die of sheer joy. It was an incredible feeling. Driving to the island…over the bridges (the bridges!) and the water (oh man the water!) so incredible. Our hotel room didn’t suck. That’s so happy! Parking was awful. AWFUL. But we went out to dinner at the ONLY place open at a ridiculous hour of the night and ate outside in beautiful breezy ocean air on a sandy beach and had crab legs. IT WAS SO AWESOME.

Then we sat around the fire and enjoyed the evening and thought…this is the best night. It cannot get any better than this.
And then it maybe did.
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Day four:

Day four we headed down to the docks to meet up with Captain Dan! (please say that like a super hero. I’m sure he doesn’t but that’s how I say it in my head… CAPtainDAN!) We took a lovely boat ride that was several hours long that took us all the way around the island and over to Assateague island where the ponies are kept now away from prying annoying people.
It’s well known I don’t love being wet but I love the water so much. I could live on a boat and Sean and I have dreamed many times of boat living and sailing around the world. We would do that in a heart beat. So those hours on the water were incredible.

    

     
Assateague Island is a national park now and could not be more lovely. The ponies are on the island and protected.
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We went from there to the beach where Sean and MT played in the Atlantic Ocean for a couple of hours and had an amazing time. I could watch that forever. I hated to leave. It was the fourth of July weekend. Apparently the island’s busiest weekend of the year. An insane time to be visiting and the beach showed it. But it didn’t matter. There were people everywhere but people were great and we had a wonderful time just playing on the beach, in the water and having so much fun. Day four was the best day.
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Travel Quotes | Travel checklist: complete.
Run on…

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We need to come to Georgetown more often…

Holy Hot Batman…it reached 103* in Aurora today. That’s nuts. I do not appreciate that kind of heat and I’m a little upset about it. I would like to point out it’s 6pm right now and it’s DOWN to 100*. Thank you climate change (global warming…whatever).
MT’s girlfriend, Allie, stayed at the house pet sitting (side note: Skosh fell in love with her and may have tried smuggling himself out in her bag) and we were so grateful. We just totally relaxed and trusted they would be taken care of. Skosh is pretty easy but Malachi is definitely a little more difficult with his anxiety (thank you Shiba Inu puppy genetics) and life in general.
We flew #Southwest We loved nearly every bit of the experience. We didn’t love not getting to sit together and we each got kind of not great seats but in the grand scheme we would get terrible seats with any airline so there you go. Every single employee we ran into was not only cheerful but had a great sense of humor and seemed happy to be there. What is #Southwest doing right? While we waited we were originally told there would be a four hour delay (gasp!) then they stepped it back and said half an hour so actually they apparently fly like I parent.

We headed out at noon and ended up landing in Virginia at 8:30pm to like…90* heat and 147% humidity.
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No no. It’s possible. Totally a thing.
I loved it immediately. I mean, I couldn’t do a thing with my hair and if I lived there I would totally go super short again like I used to. It was awful and hung super straight the whole time. NOT my most flattering for sure. But my skin…oh man. The moment we landed my skin said, “so this is where all the moisture is!”
yes. Yes it is. And you’re welcome!

I loved every minute of it. It was delicious. NO ITCHING FOR FIVE DAYS!

For me, the Itching Celiac (#weirdblognameideas) that was a big deal. I mean, I moisturize like there is no tomorrow. I keep lotions and oils and everything in the house. I am a moisturizing fool. It does me no good.
MT hates it. To his defense, you do feel sticky and hot 90% of the time but really…it was so worth the trade off to me.

Whenever I trip plan I live in fear with each step of the way.  It’s the worrier in me. Did I screw up the flight? I panic until we’re on the plane. Did I screw up the hotel room somehow? I panic until I’m in the room.  What about tours or events? I panic I panic I panic. Finding hotel rooms for the four days was seriously difficult. I got the last ones, no joke, all over the place because it was the fourth of July weekend. Each room apparently only had one bed and they threw a rollaway in the room or there was a pullout. I offered to sleep on one of those for him but he would have had to sleep with his dad and well, there’s not enough love there. Whatever.  Next time I do this I’ll totally upgrade and my kid gets bonus points. He suffered. His bed was thisclose to the air conditioner and he froze his ass off. I OFFERED. I offered many options. He stayed.
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I didn’t really have a whole lot of control over this one. It was just too tightly booked and no give. But I still felt bad. I wish there was another option so he’d have somewhere more comfortable. I would have considered a second room just so he could be comfortable. He suffered through it. I was bummed. It wasn’t about me though, it was about him and we really didn’t want him uncomfortable.
~~~~~
I don’t sleep well when I’m out of town and definitely not when this much stuff is in my head so I woke up at like…4am. So when I woke up I decided to go for a walk in incredible cool foggy Virginia morning air. I should have run but I thought I’d run later. It never happened so I’m glad I got my four miles in earlier. Then we walked all over DC so I at least got exercise that day!
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On our first day we headed into DC to “see the monuments”. Only we didn’t really want to see monuments because we’ve already seen them before so we kind of wanted to see stuff we hadn’t already seen before and if we walked past monuments then…that’s cool. They’re monuments. Who doesn’t like those? We spent a very VERY hot day in DC with 8,476,300 people who also happened to be in DC at the same time. People were nice and polite and patient considering how crazy it was.  We used to play a game at the dinner table “give me your highs and lows for the day”. So I asked the guys for their best moments of DC…here’s what we came up with.

  1. Exorcist steps. The steps the priest fell down in the movie The Exorcist. I don’t watch horror movies (well I for sure don’t) but this movie I did. Sean and I watched it many years ago when we were really young because the whole world watched it and it felt like it was important. The steps are in Georgetown and I could live there it’s so beautiful. I loved Georgetown so much. As we pulled in to our parking spot just down the street from the stairs, three darling girls walked past the car. MT silently watches. Then says quietly, “I need to come to Georgetown more often…”. I’m sure Allie would disagree.
  2. Arlington National Cemetery. An event in and of itself because it’s so lovely. We loved the Tomb of the Unknown Soldier and the guard change. I don’t know how they do it. It was so unbelievably hot and muggy and they were out there in those heavy dress uniforms my own boys have a love/hate relationship with. It’s beautiful in all it’s dedication and tradition.
  3. We wandered from there to the White House. I can’t link it, the page has Trump’s face. I might explode. Full disclosure I did not want to go there. I’m not exactly feeling super patriotic  and I could care less about the White House right now but we were within a half block of it really so we kept going and check it out it was smaller than I thought. Huh. It always seems so blessed huge. While we stood there, we took note of the many uniformed secret service surrounding the building and watching the crowds. Also, MT and I took note of the running vehicle with the two plainclothes officers sitting in it across the street. Totally not average citizens due to the vehicle being in such close proximity to the White House. At some point a guard realized someone had left a backpack behind. Upon much LOUD questioning, no one claimed it and we were all hastily evacuated out of the area. The two guys in the car were suddenly very much involved and right in the center of things.  The guards kept moving the perimeter further and further back…street upon street upon street. Bomb squad people came in. It was pretty damn exciting. What happened then? Oh, yeah…we don’t know. Wasn’t on the news and we didn’t stick around but it was still cool.
  4. We finished the day at GCDC Grilled Cheese Bar which absolutely was the best place we ate at the entire time we were in Virginia. Gourmet grilled cheese, tater tots, beer, tomato soup…I died and went to heaven. SO GOOD> All Celiac friendly. Seriously…amazing. The servers were soo great. They helped Sean out with his soy allergy and were just overall a total “10”.

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The world is yours for the taking...will you stand in the way of YOUR LIFE?
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Let’s talk shorts.

Sean and I just got back from Virginia where we went to visit our sweet youngest kid, MT…a Marine who loves to be called a kid, while he’s at school. He got a “96” which is 96 hours off. He asked for “special lib” which is special liberty, so he wouldn’t have to hang out on base the entire time and we went and did our own thing.
How cute is he?

I have much to talk about but it’ll take me a bit and since I’m sitting in the airport.

Instead I’m going to share my “prep” for the trip which entertained me for sure, if only me.

Okay, I’m really only going to share my hunt for shorts.

I needed shorts. Nothing fits me, I’m shaped weird.

I have a short waist.
Truthfully I have no waist.
I have runner’s thighs (not elite runners…sadly). They are thick and always have been.
I have a bum.
Places I need work… (all of the above)
I need to whittle in that little waist…
those thighs could use some …fine tuning…
And the bum. Oh the bum. Well let’s not go there.

What I need:
I prefer a low rise but not too low and I can handle a mid rise but not too mid. (could I be any pickier?).  I have a scar smack across the middle of my stomach that looks like a centipede that is from an emergency appendectomy during my last pregnancy, at least one Marine ago.  But when pants rest on it, it’s very itchy and sore. So I prefer low rise. One of my sisters once told me she loved low rise, the lower the better because then she could get a smaller size! Good Lord the things you remember.

So I needed shorts. I’m stuck somewhere between an 8 and a 10 because of the no waist and the bum thing. It’s quite sad. So I shop and I shop and I shop (oh my Lord the stores I went to) and I even tried clothes ON. I never do that. I buy things, bring them home, if they don’t fit I return them. Unfortunately I’m having such a devil of a time I would have lived at the store. So I started trying them on.
I shopped at:
Goodwill (success! Two pair!)
TJMaxx (so much love…my perfect shorts)
JCP
Dillards
Target
Ross
ARC Thrift store
A couple other thrift stores…
Old Navy
Nordstrom Rack
And probably a few other random stores I can’t remember.

So here’s the deal…as you can see I had great success at the thrift store and at TJMaxx. At TJMaxx I found a pair of American Eagle shorts that were so freakin’ comfortable I could hardly stand it they felt like pajamas. I was on a mission. Off I went to two more stores to find them but no…I had bought the only pair in existence. So I dove in and headed to American Eagle…the teeny bopper store. The store for children. The store for young people who wear no clothes. The store that sells a “sweater” that is in fact…a tiny halter top type thing.
I walked in the door and was immediately assaulted by someone asking if they could help me and I showed them my shorts and said I must have more. She pointed to the display in front of me and said these were the same shorts. I bought two pair immediately.
When I got home, however, I discovered they were totally NOT the same shorts.
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Not gonna lie, I was sad.
So I hopped online and found what I was looking for.
Now at this point I only have about five days before we’re leaving for our trip and I’m getting pretty nervous. So I ponder my choices and sweat about it for a while (overnight-truth be told) and finally bite the bullet and hit the “overnight” button which is in fact…$20 extra. I had free shipping so it just made it $20. I KNOW> JUST.
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I gasped, too. I’ve NEVER spent that on shipping before but I was pretty worried.
l bought them on Sunday which would deliver them to me on Tuesday. I used a card I used to have attached to PayPal but just the week before it had been hacked. Since I’m constantly online I had caught it very quickly and they had cancelled the transactions and issued me a new card. This is important later.

Tuesday came and went. Wednesday it crosses my mind…huh…where’s my shorts?
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I hop online to chat with them and I get Aric. Aric says “yes!” He sees my order! It absolutely will be delivered in ONE BUSINESS DAY! As soon as the payment is verified.
Um….what Aric?
As soon as we have processed and verified the payment we will “totally ship your items to you in one business day!”
Seriously…what Aric? What does that mean? He just kept repeating it. I finally asked for a supervisor which he would NOT GIVE ME> Because he wanted to see my HEAD EXPLODE with frustration.
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l started screen shotting his conversation and then I TOLD him I was screen shotting his conversation and I INSISTED on speaking to a supervisor and also I got on the phone to the customer service people who were really REALLY nice.

I got Matt. I told Aric and the supervisor he had finally produced that I was done with them and had moved on. I told Matt what had happened and that~ Dude..I need my shorts. He laughed and said, “let’s find them!”
He immediately figured out that my new card had not been verified on PayPal yet so they weren’t shipping the items because they thought the payment was hinky.  I gave him a different payment. Thanked him profusely. Asked him why they didn’t CALL ME. He said yep…they should have. That was totally the problem. Also, he said Aric had attitude and that was not okay. He was REALLY sorry and took half the cost off (free shorts!) And gave me free overnight shipping!

Matt does customer service right. We like Matt.
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Also, I had a lovely chat with him and know most of his life story.  (Hey Matt!)

This turned out to be a really good experience and I am glad I did it. Yes, I have American Eagle shorts but I love them so who cares. I have three pair. One pair of white (I love them) one pair of black (I love them) and one pair of khaki and they’re not bad. They go with everything but they aren’t the most flattering color on me so I’ll wear them but they won’t be my first choice. But they fit great and that is definitely the most important thing.
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We had the best time in Virginia with MT so tomorrow I’ll tell you guys all about it.
Meanwhile I’ll d a HIIT workout today or some strength because it’s been days without strength and I long to remember what muscles are again.
Inspiring Pre-Workout Quotes | POPSUGAR Fitness
Run on…

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Birthday Week…

We returned theboy to his parents on Saturday after he stayed with us for three days and then came home rest because I’ve been Celiac ill  for two weeks and oh my gosh the ITCHING>
I mean, I’ve done a million other things, too, but oh does my stomach hate me. It just does. I finally yesterday took some more Glutenease and a heavier dose of probiotics and some prayer to see if that helped. And I slept. I’ve also definitely started restricting the FODMAPS foods which is new for me but I figure why not…better safe than sorry. Fortunately I don’t eat a lot of those anyway so it’s not much of a cut back but a few of them are definite summer foods. They are off the list just in case they are contributing to my misery. Summer fun only!
~~~~~
Sunday morning we got up early to go on a birthday hike with Shaughnessy and theboy. It was a GORGEOUS day for being out and we picked Bear Creek Trail at Lair o’ the Bear Park. 
When it’s that fabulous of a day you can bet you aren’t going to be alone but when we got there Morrison was PACKED with some random event we weren’t expecting. Cars were everywhere. It was crazy busy. People milling about, no parking available.What the hell? And then we saw them…the runners…

It was the Revel Rockies Marathon/Half Marathon!!!

If you can’t be IN a marathon the next best thing is to WATCH one!

We were beyond excited. Shaughnessy rolled her window down and waved and I yelled in my head because otherwise  would have scared everyone from the wrong side of the truck. It was the end of the race so it was VERY inspiring.

Shaughnessy and I both wanted to be there (she’s run the half before and said it was a really fun race). It looked SO beautiful. And we both wanted to go straight home and sign up for a race.
Running Humor #22: I am never running again. Oh, look, a race! - Nemo:

~~~~~

Bear crosses through Colorado race, stunning runners

The runners were running the Garden of the Gods 10k and the bear needed to cross the road…~there’s an obvious joke there but you know that’s so not my style~ he politely waited for an opening and took his chance. Only in Colorado.
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~~~~
photos from yesterday~ because I forced them all to let me take photos.

They.were.thrilled.
(well…theboy will always pose and loves selfies and loves to pose and loves to put his “I’m cool” fingers in my face…smart little thing)
  

      


~~~~~
This is the start of my birthday week! I love my birthday week. Shaughnessy and Adam gave me these vintage Pyrex bowls for my birthday/thank you gift for watching theboy and even though I told them no gifts she does know I have a weakness for pretty bowls. I also have no cupboard space so I acquire something, something has to go. It wasn’t too difficult of a decision this time but I see issues in the future due to my aforementioned weakness. These bowls are gorgeous. And I love pink.

~~~~~
it’s going to be 90* today (so unfriendly) so I’m going to try and run later tonight. Plus, oh the Celiac makes me exhausted. So I’m going to lift this morning, and I have many many errands to run. I’m going to run down to Castle Rock and do the incline (yay). Yes, even in the heat. Because we keep the work going even when it’s hard.And we encourage even when it’s hard.

motiv8ionteam compete competitor athlete fitness motivation motivationalquotes fitnessmotivation motivational motivationmonday motivated gymmotivation weightlossmotivation staymotivated bodybuildingmotivation goals:

 Run on…

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Is this what “Snakes on a Plane” is like?

Sean and I had the perfect day. THE PERFECT DAY.

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I love those. Don’t you seriously just LOVE those?

I finished my work pretty early so I mentioned offhand that I was going hiking as he was walking out the door and he said, “you’re going hiking? I’m totally skipping work…” and he did.

We went to Enchanted Forest Trail because …hello Beautiful and because Sean hadn’t been there before and I really wanted to show it to him. And oh man it did not disappoint. There were a ton of bikes out (who knew so many people wouldn’t be working today? Slackers) but I didn’t care because they were all really nice and we have to share the trails, this is Colorado and everyone wants to be here.
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We met a darling girl named Chelsea who just moved here in January with her husband and son because they just wanted to. No job, no family, they just wanted to. She’s hiked as much in the last five months as I have in the last five years I think. It’s totally crazy.

We had to stop a lot for poor Chelsea and her asthma (I tease, it was totally me stopping to gasp). We also shared the trail with these bull snakes…

he was upset and actually striking at people


and these guys were fighting with each other. That was incredible!
A little over five miles (the map said 5.6…my steps said 5.3) gave us a really good workout. We were sweaty and tired and it was a crazy workout.

We went from there to have amazing Mexican food at our favorite place in Morrison and holy cow I’ve never had fish tacos THEYWERESOGOOD. I’m a convert. I will always have them. They were delicious. I’ve died and gone to heaven. Mango salsa. I want to go back right now. Well…maybe another day. I’m really full. But yum.

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When we got home (after what seemed like hours and hours and HOURS of traffic thankyouDenver for rush hour traffic) I had RUNNING SHOES waiting for me!
You know you’re a runner when you cheerfully, willingly, even ask to pay a ridiculous amount of money for a pair of shoes that are the ugliest most beastly color of green and you do a little dance and shout for joy when those suckers show up.
Yes…you cringe when you see the color. I mean…you’re not an idiot. But still…NEW SHOES!

You should know…this is not a true depiction of the color. They are a way truer green and they are ten times brighter and more offensive. They’re pretty bad. Sean said people will definitely see me coming. It doesn’t help that green is not my favorite color but still…yuck. Do I care? Kinda but hell no. I needed new shoes. Newton’s are hard to find right now so I’ll take what I can get.

~~~~~
Walked the puppy and back home again. I was hoping for dessert but it’s pretty late. Time flew by.
~~~~~
Today…HIIT for sure because yesterday I skipped it to go hiking.

I’m feeling the need for some strength.

Sometimes this is all a Wild Woman needs... - Shikoba - Photo Credit: Shikoba - Springbrook National Park, Northern Rivers, Australia WILD WOMAN SISTERHOOD™ #WildWomanSisterhood:

Run on…

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I was supposed to live in Boulder, I’m sure of it.

I drove to Boulder yesterday (that place is so beautiful, why can’t I live there??) for a meeting and I figured while I was there I could pick up some new Newton’s and have lunch with my beautiful daughter. She takes selfies but I get eye rolls if I ask. So I steal them. 😉

Traffic did not love me and I ended up truly stuck in the middle of the morning for far too long. Late to lunch and enjoying my kid’s time for a bit too long and before I knew it I had run out of time to stop and buy shoes. Sad, too, since I was just a block away from the store. I was so close! I waved to it as I walked by.
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We enjoyed our lunch at Shine, as usual, because it’s healthy, gluten free, amazing food and really great service. Okay, today the service was kind of iffy but hey, it was bound to happen,right? Also, I forgot to say plain burger so it came loaded with fried onions (yuck yuck doubleyuck) so I had to take those off. It was not a crisis. I spent my childhood scraping things off food.

Don’t let anyone tell you ketchup and mustard can just be “scraped off”.

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It cannot. I am totally on your side.

~~~~~~

Then I used my new iphone to find the address of the meeting I was supposed to be at. Except my googlemaps said…address doesn’t exist. Now I’m ten minutes late, I’ve been working through this phone for twenty minutes and address doesn’t exist.

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Yes, that’s right. I was talking to the little man inside the iphone. No, I don’t talk to Siri. I talk to the little man I’m CERTAIN is inside the phone NOT ANSWERING ME.

I spent another few minutes playing with it until it finally randomly decided it did in fact know where the address was.

It was not stressful at all.

By the time I got home I seriously had to use the restroom, I had been lost more than I had been found and I did not feel good. I slept.

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~~~~~
Today we are having a blizzard.
yes, you heard that right. A blizzard. So I’m not sure what I’m doing. I thought today would be a great day to start a plank challenge…

You know you want to. Doesn’t everyone start plank challenges on the 18th of the month?

I think a 5 minute plank sounds like a whole lot of ouch but hey…I’m willing to try. The longest I’ve ever gone is 2.5 minutes so I’d like to give it a try and at least get up to 3 minutes.

Planks.
Wall sits.
Push ups.
Squats.
All things that need a good amount of work. I think I’ll work on that today.

start where you are:

Dream big.
~~~~~
Image result for workout motivation
Run on…

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Tuesdays with Michelle

I spent the morning with Michelle (no photo…I did not feel good, sorry. Here, look at this one to remember us by. It wasn’t that long ago….)

hiking at Red Rocks (insert amazing picture of Red Rocks here so everyone will be appropriately jealous because they so don’t live here…SO sad)


photo by Michelle because her phone is ridiculously better than mine. Now I’M sad.
We did a hike that was nowhere…this bears repeating…nowhere near as painful and mean as the hike Sean and I did on Easter Sunday. We were able to hold a conversation nearly the entire time with me only stopping a few times to gasp…again…I’m woefully out of shape so please do have mercy before you pick on me too much. And it was hot (nearly 80*!)
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name that movie! ::swoon::

I was smart enough to put sunscreen on part of me…the facial part of me (ha!) and my neck…but I stopped there apparently and didn’t think to do the rest. Why? Ladies and gentlemen, we are sponsored by ADHD week! I’m relatively certain I was working on it and then…

What’s that??

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yeahhhh.
So my upper back looks pretty damn red.
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Let’s be real here…my skin is far more freckle (thanks Daddy!) than lily white but it is in there somewhere. Now it’s pretty in pink.
Meanwhile…Miss Michelle said she read my blog and saw the photo and said, what the hell is Ingress. She googled it and it didn’t tell her anything! I thought that was odd. I’ve googled it before and it told me exactly what it was but whatever. I’ll update the blog because I do talk about it. So here you go for everyone that has forgotten how Google works. 😉

Ingress is a location-based, augmented-reality mobile game developed by Niantic, a company spun off from Google.[4]The game was first released for Android devices on November 15, 2012,[2][5] and later for iOS on July 14, 2014.[3][6] The game has a science fiction back story with a continuous open narrative.[7][8] Ingress is also considered to be a location-based exergame.

Unlike many other MMOGs, the competition in Ingress is primarily between the two opposing factions rather than between individual players, and players never interact directly in the game or suffer any kind of damage other than temporarily running out of “XM”, the power that fuels all actions except movement and communication. The gameplay consists of capturing “portals” at places of cultural significance, such as public art, landmarks, monuments, etc., and linking them to create virtual triangular “control fields” over geographical areas. ~source

I totally understand this is confusing but suffice it to say, it’s a computer game, Sean travels on his bike a lot, on foot and in the car and he loves it. Shaughnessy and Adam play it, too. They all find it really interesting and engaging. I think anything that keeps them that interested obviously has some value and the fact that it includes learning with interacting and also exercise well, it all kind of combines to make the best scenario for me. I don’t mind if he plays it.
~~~~~
Here’s a randomly dumb story.
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And just for the men that read the blog, it’s about underwear. Sorry about that. There’s a particular style I like and I can find it in two brands at two stores. No big deal. I’m very simple.  It’s the OCD in me. I stopped at the store the other day to pick some up and they have changed the sizing. If you know me, you know I don’t care about sizing, I wear whatever fits me.  I have size 11 in my closet and size 4 (well probably not a 4 anymore…ha! yeah…it’s been a long year). But now the new sizes are as follows:
size 5=S
size 6=M
size 7=L
size 8=XL
size 9=2XL
And that is as big as they go. Anyone else think that’s random? Also, the cut is way different, so I usually wear a size M and there was NO way they were fitting me anymore.
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I just looked at them, shook my head and walked away. What genius thought they should resize underwear and make it SMALLER??  

Because women don’t already need therapy for body issues. Honestly.

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~
~~~~

I have to take my car in and get some minor work done. See, I’m hoping to not jinx that by saying it’s minor…I should just say “work done”. Hm. I’m finishing up here at home quick, then to the store, then back home quick and then I toyed with dropping the car and walking home.

Now to be clear….it’s six miles. That’s quite a walk. But in the grand scheme it’s not that bad and I can always take the bus. Oh! I should totally take the bus. Hm. I’ll think about it. I mean…city buses are an experience..personal space being invaded, possibly mugged, minor sexual assaults..hey now.

Just kidding Mom. Just the personal space thing.

So Sean has turned into me. He’s headed out the door this morning and I reassure him that I’ll take care of it. He hesitates and then kisses me goodbye. At the door he says goodbye again and then stops and turns and says…

“how are you going to take care of it?”
Ha. I said, “I just am. Go to work”.

Such a mom moment.
~~~~~
Incredible artwork by US Outdoor Store employee @kettmckenna with a message very dear to our hearts: always #packyourtrash adventure lovers! . . . #leavenotrace #art #sketch #mountains #johnmuir #hiking #quotes #humor #wonderlust #pnwonderland #upperleft #oregonexplored #oregon #pnw #usoutdoor #snowwaterland

The Writer's Ink. "Take a Risk" || God has something amazing for you! Take that risk! :) www.thewritersink.com.au

Run on…

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Filed under hiking, Migraines, Motivation, Tess

I have a love/hate relationship with hiking this trail. Mostly love. Well…

It’s Boston Marathon Day! And if your job lets you then it’s ~watch the marathon and wish you were running it while also witnessing Meb’s FINAL BOSTON RUN!~ I mean…damn. He’s so good. I could watch him run anytime and I am sad to see him retire.
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My job ~self employed and run your own business Heyyy~ does not let me watch the marathon because NBC won’t let me. I don’t pay for that channel. Bastards. Yes. I’m bitter.
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~~~~~
On Easter Sunday we went hiking. The kids all went their separate directions so we chose to head to the mountains. Sean, as usual, picked a hike and then read the description to me so I could decide yay or nay. Well this was a day I wasn’t paying a great deal of attention so I just said…SURE. I’ll totally do five miles on a trail that some people rate moderate and some people rate difficult and it has a 2200ft elevation climb that starts at like…8000ft.

That sounds FUN.

Not moving for three months means I”m completely out of shape. I got a pedicure right before my surgery on February 2nd and my feet are still baby soft. It’s so wrong. Every step my poor toes just protested with pre-blister.

This trail was unbelievable. Technically it was four trails. We started on Gregory Canyon, then Ranger, then EM Greenman trail, then finally Saddlerock. 

It was definitely work.
It was technical. Which means there’s going to be rocks and obstacles, sometimes steep elevation and possibly scrambling or using your hands.
Yep, yep and yep. We did it all yesterday. Definitely technical. My knees are a little achy today but otherwise I’m pretty good. Sean is going down stairs funny. Ha. I was really careful to stretch a lot yesterday.

We could have taken any number of combinations of the trails to get us back to the bottom. We chose the most difficult I think which also happened to be the shortest. The trail that got us to the bottom was the one with the ladder. We were met by someone coming up and he saw us reading the map and immediately asked if he could help us. Well, no. We’re just reading the map. I did ask him how technical and steep the trail was and he “suggested” we really would be better off taking the “easier” trail down. This one was a bit more difficult.

Officially my first ladder…on a trail.

We were royally insulted and determined to prove our hiking prowess and pushed on. The bottom half of the hike was no harder than the first half which isn’t to say it was an escalator or anything. But we did it and we survived and I LOVE technical hikes. They take forever (like four hours for five miles plus at least a half hour at the top to look at the view) but still…it takes time.

A milder section of the trail…my terrible camera. Don’t worry, replacing it this week!


This was at the top…

It was amazing and crazy and seriously a lot of work. I need a little more time to built up my fitness to tackle this kind of trail. I spent a lot of time gasping and stopping. Sean, meanwhile, was his usual self and marched on with no issues like he does this every weekend. I was fully marathon trained and he had no time to run or workout or anything and we headed out to hike the Appalachian Trail for a week thinking..I’m going to totally fly past him.

No. That did not happen. I had to stop and gasp consistently as he flew up the inclines and I watched him. It was so rude.
Yesterday was a total flashback. Jerk. He is so freaking awesome. He hiked really really reeaaallly slow just so I could keep up with him. It was sweet. And annoying.
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Sean took amazing photos but he forgets to share them with me so they are just for his own self I guess.

I don’t feel comfortable taking my really good camera while scrambling and such so I just take my phone and we keep it in the pack.
Getting a new phone is pretty damn important. I’m over these bad photos. I think they’re getting worse!
Michelle said she’d do the trail with me but who knows when that’s going to happen.

At the end of the day we treated ourselves to an amazing burger and sweet potato fries at Shine in Boulder. I die when I eat those burgers. They are so good. Totally worth it.

~~~~~

Takin’ it a little easy today after yesterday. I got zero sleep last night so I’m going to pick up groceries, make some appointments, run some errands and hopefully get a baby run in…if I’m up to it. As if I’m up to anything longer than a baby run!
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Here’s what we’re NOT going to talk about today because we’re taking a news break. We’re all reading about it so we don’t need it here.
North Korea
China
The White House Easter egg hunt (eyeroll)
Sean Spicer
United Airlines
~~~~~
Nature of Love, Love of Nature

My favorite.
Run on…

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