Nature Bust

Yesterday morning, I decided to take the kids on a little trail/nature walk. Why? Because I enjoy struggling and testing the boundaries of my anger management coping skills. Innocently enough, I thought it would be a fun way to get our steps in, burn off some energy and tire out both dog and children.

We have a trail in our neighborhood that runs along the river and until they finish the trail, literally ends in our backyard. Apparently, the trial contains rare flowers which is news to me because that joint looks like it’s overrun with weeds. Like seriously, they put up signs about NOT picking the flowers because it’s a crime to humanity and a felony or some shit. They’re very serious about these wildflowers, guys. The town will literally take both of your kidneys if you dare harm those no-one-cares-about flowers.

After sharing these death threats with the children, we began our journey into the “forest.” I usually refrain from going into the woods alone because as a woman, I WILL get kidnapped, murdered, butchered and dumped into the river. That’s just fact. Just a part of being a female.

However, I figure my preschool aged children who have been known to lick shopping carts and a blind diabetic dog would be enough to heed any potential threats. Power in numbers!

We looked for fairies, elves and wolves, but didn’t find any. INSTEAD, Caroline yelled “Mom! Come here!” I figured she wanted to make me aware of a pressing issue like her ponytail being crooked, but instead she pointed to this:

What. The. Actual. Fuck. Is. This.

There I was trying to expose my children to the beauty of nature and what do they find? A skeleton and detached bones of a dead animal. Caroline looked at me with big wide eyes asking what happened.

Me: Well, whatever animal that was…it died.

Caroline: How?

Me: I mean, if I had to guess…it was killed.

Caroline: That’s TERRIBLE!

Me: Well…you know…food chain and all.

Caroline: What’s a food chain?

Me: Um…when animals kill each other to eat.

Caroline and Oliver: :::stare blankly at me:::

Me: Um, well, okay…so everything in nature has predators and stuff, I think. They hunt to eat. So maybe this animal was hunted and killed by something? I don’t know. But look! It still has hair on its tail! That’s cool.

Caroline: That’s awful. Everything gets killed? Do we get killed?

Me: Ughhhhhh. Um…..nature walk is over, guys! Let’s go home and watch “Paw Patrol.”

 

I slept throughout every science I ever took so me explaining the environment to my children is like Donald Trump explaining space in front of an actual astronaut.

What a bust. I ended up with 89 mosquito bites and Caroline acted like the titular character in “A Princess and the Pea” by having an epic meltdown every time a rock was felt in her shoe. Oliver, on the other hand discovered a caterpillar and found some precious joy in throwing stones in the river so maybe next time I go to Target, I’ll just drop him off by the trail for a little bit. He can keep himself occupied while I shop.

Now back to this:

I’m thinking of sending the picture in for an episode of “Forensic Files.” I want trace DNA, blood spatter, an age and occupation of the victim and a profile of the murderer. Caroline says we need a paleontologist, but I don’t know. Whatever it is, let’s take a moment and pour on out for it…RIP to the thing that forever traumatized my daughter.

I’M GOING TO THE OLYMPICS

Saturday I ran my 5th(?) half-marathon located about 50 minutes from me along the shores of Lake Ontario. Despite being called “The Shoreline Half Marathon” you never actually run along the shoreline. I mean, you see it from a distance, but if you go into this race thinking that you’re going to have be swept up in lakefront breezes and cheered on by drifting boats then you are WRONG.

What you will see are several ranch-style homes with pick-up truck occupied driveways and “TRUMP” lawn signs. Oh. And corn. Lots of corn.

This race is commonly referred to as the “half that you love to hate” which is very true. It’s usually hot, sticky, lacks shade throughout and is very little crowd support, but we still run it anyway because what else is there to do on a Saturday in mid-July? (The answer is anything else. Literally, anything.)

Like most things in my life, I committed to this race under the influence of alcohol. It took two beers on a Sunday afternoon for me to hit “register” and once the beer exited my toxicology report, I immediately regretted it.

I brushed it off that it would at least be a good way to get my miles in and I wouldn’t put any pressure on myself to race it. Just run through the beautiful “scenery.”

Sure, sure.

I woke up on race morning and was immediately hit with the frigid temps of a Rochester “summer.” It was barely 60 degrees and drizzling. I was dressed in a tank top and shorts and arrived to a parking lot full of people who actually read the weather report and had dressed appropriately. It was like I had shown up for a Christmas party in a bikini. You is so stupid, Allee!

However, once the gun went off, I warmed up rather quickly. My expectation was to run a 10:30/mile since that is my long run pace, but I looked at my watch and it was 9:30. Instead of slowing down, I just tried to maintain it. Every time a new, completed mile showed on my watch, I figured the next mile would be the one where I would crash and burn.

And bitches, I NEVER DID.

13.2 miles at a pace usually reserved for 5ks for me. I ended with an 11 minute PR! It was one of those rare “runner’s highs” where I got quantitative proof that I’m stronger and faster than I give myself credit for.


Also, I’m going to the Olympics now. It’s inevitable at this point. My inbox is flooded with sponsor requests. Nike is saying that I’m the “next big thing” which is both humbling and accurate.

Two Days in a Row! Miracles!

Well yesterday I made the commitment to blog more regularly and with that, comes the pressure of “what do I write about when all I do is check Facebook and play cars with my son?” Well clearly the writing gods were listening because as Caroline and I were snuggling in bed this morning, fighting the internal pressure to wake up and start our day, she turned to me and yelled “MOM THERE’S A SPIDER IN YOUR HAIR!”

Bitches, I have never heard anything scarier come out of her mouth. I would be less scared if she was 16 and announced she was pregnant.

 I shot up like someone detonated a firecracker between my legs. I saw something move towards the top of our headboard, but because I didn’t have my glasses on, I didn’t know where to channel my flailing arms.

Caroline and I sat at the end of the bed waiting for this vicious creature to reappear, but it never did. We talked smack to the hidden spider for five minutes with Caroline brilliantly announcing that “this day you will die in your life, spider!” — that’s some powerful shit, right there.

You all know that the spider is behind my bed laying eggs and by tonight 459 baby spiders will be released into my home, overtaking us and making our certain deaths look like suicides.

Anyway, last night was the second race (of a 3 series set) that takes place once a month in June, July and August. The race series is called Run585 (that’s Rochester’s zipcode, folks) and last month, we did a 5k and this month was an 8k.

The entire ride to the race, I kept wondering “why an 8k? What a random ass length” and then it occurred to me that an 8k represented the 8 in “585” and next month is another 5k. I know, I know. I can’t believe the damage blonde highlights have caused my brain either.

It was exceptionally humid last night with bouts of light rain, but overall, it was a really pretty course. All of the races run along the Genesee River which is apparently more than just a place to dump dead bodies in– the trails and waterways are actually quite pretty. My coach wanted me to run 9:30 miles and not overdo it because I have a half-marathon on Saturday. I hit my mark and didn’t even feel the need to puke afterwards so that’s a mark of success.

They had a loaded baked potato bar post-race which is literally like a carb-lover’s wet dream. The potatoes were as heavy as newborn babies, I’m not kidding. I took one for the road and came home to eat it PLUS two slices of reheated pizza. My diet is going well, thanks for asking.

Well, I’m off to spend this day with my kids cooped up in the house. There are thunderstorms until 4pm (it’s only 11am!) and it’s currently down pouring. I have no idea how to keep these kids occupied in the house this long. I’m letting Oliver have pretzels for breakfast and Caroline informs me that we should “do crafts all day!” **

** When is too early to start drinking?

Hola, Bonjour, Ola, Guten tag

{As seen on my Facebook page, this site is a work-in-progress. Everything was lost because the writing was too good and The New Yorker felt threatened. I’m working on it! }

Let’s just pretend that it hasn’t been 486 years since I last wrote because I genuinely don’t know how to properly address my blogger laziness. I have no excuses other than ensuring my kids aren’t playing with knives or becoming burdens on society. Children + work + trying to grow my nails out has taken up the majority of my time lately. But I’m back! I’m on summer break and since writing in here beats watching another episode of “Sophia the First” with Caroline—hopefully this isn’t a one-time thing.

So before we go forward, let’s get the necessary updates out of the way, shall we?

How are the kids? Well, Oliver learned the mass appeal and comedic factor of potty-talk in all situations and places. He was recently denied for speech therapy because they said he was “too smart” and “just needed time to find the right words.”

He found them, all right. You know the old rule of “don’t end a sentence with a preposition?” Well, if Oliver could stop ending his sentences with “butthole” that would be great.

Caroline ended her second year of preschool and begins kindergarten prep in the fall. She can write her own name and knows how use a loofah in the shower so I think my job with her is almost done.

How is the husband? They just announced that they’re re-releasing the Super Nintendo console in September soooo…he’s happy and well.

Are you still obsessed with baked goods? Great question, reporter. The answer is “yes,” but with far more thought behind eating them. In March, Ryan and I completed “Whole30” which is this crazy drastic diet that prohibits booze (OMG), sugar (WTF), pasta (MY HEART), bread (SWEET LORD) and anything in the grocery store that looks genuinely appealing. We basically survived on Larabars, avocados, sweet potatoes and uncured bacon. I ended up losing nine pounds and gaining a new appreciation of what I put into my body. Will I still eat an entire cookie cake if you leave it on my counter? Yes. Will I regret it more and then follow it up with a bowl of fresh fruit? Yes.

Do you still run? Obviously. An Olympic athlete doesn’t just end her career because she’s “busy.”

Actually, I hired a real coach for the summer. His full-marathon time is close to my half-marathon time so it’s basically like LeBron James training Roseanne.

I’M GOING TO BE SO FAST.

What are you going to do this summer? Well, you’re looking at it. Actually, you’re reading it. My goal, however lofty, is to blog everyday (or like every other day. Or twice a week. Or a month) of summer vacation even if it’s just a picture of my cat eating Doritos (she loves them!) or a story about how I found a ziplock bag of almonds on the side of the road (true story. Almonds are expensive—who is so rich to just lose them?)

Get ready, folks! Summer blogging 2017 has commenced!