Wednesday, December 29, 2010
Monday, December 27, 2010
- It's cold there. Sweaty people like cold places. (No really, we wanted to go somewhere cool in the summer when it's hot over here...and it's not THAT cold over there in summer).
- It's much closer to Hawaii/US than you'd think, and since Ryan is still pretty young- we're trying to limit our flight hours.
- Like the Pyramids of Giza, the waterways of Venice or bustling Tiananmen Square...I am drawn to the Blue Lagoon!
- Ryan has been learning Olde Icelandic and would like to test out his language skills.
2. Ice Bar.I'm sure we will also see the usual geyers and glaciers and whatnot (Hawaiians might be the only tourists in Iceland who turn up their noses at the active volcano), but we have plenty of time to figure that out!
Sunday, December 26, 2010
Because this was his third interaction with Santa this holiday season (once at Rich's company Christmas party, once more at preschool), Ryan was pretty comfortable with Santa on this go 'round! He still has no clue it's his daddy behind the 'many many hairs' (what Ryan calls his beard), but it's a far cry from last year when he looked down the whole time and refused to look at him. :-)
Here's Ry opening a single present on Christmas Eve (we wanted him to open up his disco ball from Uncle Joey at night so he could use it). Needless to say, he's enthralled by it. So am I.
We just came back from our final holiday season dinner with our friends Yuri & Mike and are officially porked up from the holiday gluttony. Hope you all had a wonderful Christmas!
Thursday, December 23, 2010
1. The correct pronounciation of, and definition of crudites. Around here...we call it a 'veggie platter,' and we tend to avoid them when there are oilier, saltier, more caloric options available. (Thank you Answer.com.)
2. The correct pronounciation of Reykjavik (Rake-ya-vick). Since we're going there next year (Ry's first international trip!) I'm trying to get some basics down. It's not going well.
3. Preschool is called 'play school' in Canada. Oh, and there are a lot of non-white folk in Canada. (Thank you, Caillou!)
4. People in Iceland eat such delicacies as sheep's brain, puffin, seal, fermented shark meat and whale. I'm not sure why they left out 'cute puppies' and 'young children' since they apparently aren't very discriminating. ;-) Just kidding, Iceland! Please don't spit in my food later.
Monday, December 20, 2010
That's Rich in the red Sesame Street Christmas shirt and Santa hat, and YES! YES! So glad you noticed! That IS my arm right next to him pushing the jog stroller (you can see Ryan's leg too!). Personally, I think this is the best photo of me all year! I look great! (PHOTO from Big Island Running Co...thanks Melissa!)
We finished about a minute off our pace in 2009 (I blame Ryan for gaining a few from last year...so he's already been put on a strict no carbs diet until he starts hitting the gym regularly), but solidly in the middle of the pack. Once again, Rich carried the weight of the team by pushing Ryan for most of the race! But I have to admit, it was a lot less painful for me trying to keep up with him after having done a warm up run earlier (my first ever...and last, since I'm not gonna do anything crazy like warming up before future races)!
I have to say, I'm always amazed at the speed of the runners in 'lil 'ol Kona! And Rani puts on such a great race for everyone! Here's what made the race extra kinda exciting- Chris Lieto (& his adorable son Kaiden) were there. Not only did Chris set a smoking course record for the 5k (16:18), but his son is no slouch either (he ran the 1-mile in 7:49, completely decked out in custom K Swiss children's wear)! We also saw Bree Wee happily trotting along the 1-mile race course holding her son Kainoa's hand. So it's a rare sport where amateurs get to say they (cough! cough!) got to "compete" with the pro's!!!! ;-)
Here's a pic of Ryan on one of his many days in the water (we had friends in town from TX so we went a few more times than normal) with daddy this week-
And here's a pic of Rich going SUPing with one of them at Kamakahonu!
Rich has gone paddle boarding 5-6 times now, so I'd really like to get him a used board, but I still need about $600-$1,000 to get a half-decent one, so I think we're gonna wait for awhile!
Thursday, December 16, 2010
This pic is in front of the Hilton Waikoloa Hotel (please note the half opened lens cap that yours truly must claim responsibility for). I took Ryan out to Waikoloa on Tuesday for a Mommy & Son Field Trip!
In the main lobby checking out their tree (it was fake...I checked).
Monday, December 13, 2010
But isn't this little grin worth it? Doesn't it just scream "Mommy all I want for Christmas is to dance to Freak Out [by Chic]?" Okay, well maybe that's my own voice inside my head, but still. I know Christmas shouldn't be about gifts, but in this instance, I can't help it! I just want to encourage him to be able to do what he loves best- which is to dance...and I really think this toy will rock. his. world.
On a humbler note...I gots schooled today! Because Rich got called in to work on Sunday, I missed my usual run yesterday, so I decided to make it up this afternoon. However, because of poor planning, I nearly killed myself. For starters, I ran in the afternoon heat (as opposed to the early morning) for the first time in ages...so I was totally unaccustomed to how hot and humid it was.
Then, because I had originally planned to do a really long run on Sunday, I had EIGHTY OUNCES of water on my back. This is more than double of what my 4-bottle Fuel Belt usually carries (32 ounces), so I don't know what the heck I was thinking! I definitely noticed when I picked up the pack that it seemed pretty darn heavy, but I figured my shoulders could handle it and thought nothing of it. And because the first mile of my run was downhill, I was mislead into thinking it was no different than using a Fuel Belt. But then once the road flattened out, it became very quickly evident that it WAS NOT. Suddenly it felt like I had WEIGHTS on my back! Because I basically did- I had the equivalent of TWO AND A HALF LITERS of water on my back!!!
I kept telling myself that I could stop and dump some of it out, but Ms. Hard Head wanted to see if I could handle it. I figured if I couldn't do a 10-mile run with that much water on my back, I certainly wasn't going to be able to do a 16, 18 or 20 miler. I won't lie- it was brutal. I took more walk breaks on this run than I have in ages. I felt pathetic. I was sweating like a pig and sucking down water like I had been crawling across the Sahara for days. I felt like I had NO energy the entire run and had to use all sorts of mind games just to finish.
Then, because I was in a rush to get the run over with (so I could join Rich, Ry and our friends from TX down at the beach), I forgot to put on Body Glide under the straps before I left. And I made it even worse by wearing my Zoot tank top (so I could swim afterwards)...so I chafed. I think the Camelbak is designed primarily for trail runners (who probably wear shirts with sleeves in cooler weather), not for sleeveless runners in the humidity. Thankfully, it's designed so well that the chafing was minimal, but as any runner with chubby thighs knows- chafing sucks.
And finally, as if the heat, accidental weight lifting and chafing weren't bad enough, I found the mouthpiece/tube a little awkward to use. I kept having to twist the tube to insert it in my mouth, and then biting down and sucking down water was just...different. I'm sure it's something I could get used to over time (I remember thinking my first Fuel Belt was awkward at first, I hated that it kept riding up my waist), but overall, I couldn't help comparing the Camelbak to my Fuel Belt and thinking I would just rather use the belt and refuel at convenience stores along the way than run with 2 liters of water on my back. Dean Karnazes I am not.
I also felt more than a little silly running along the highly populated Alii Drive carrying such a bright, heavy duty hydration pack...I kept wanting to tell the staring tourists that I was running around the island so I could justify the look.
On the other hand, I hate to misjudge something based on one rough day of poor planning and then miss out on being able to condition/strengthen my back to be stronger while also pounding out some really long, uninterrupted runs along Queen K. So the jury isn't out on the pack just yet...
In any case, as tough as the run was, I kept reminding myself along the way that the rough runs just make me appreciate the easier runs all the more, and that the satisfaction of pushing through is all the more sweeter once I'm done. So as miserable as I was, I still appreciated being out there. I just need to get more hardcore. Maybe get a tattoo. Spit more. ;-)
Saturday, December 11, 2010
And this morning at Target after we checked out, he ran over to an empty check out counter and declared, "I'm going to play cashier!" and then proceeded to ring me up (again). I'm pretty sure the Target staff really appreciates when parents let their kids do that sort of thing...still, I'm kinda glad he's started working there since we can really use his discount. :-)
At tonight's Christmas parade with the three amigos!
We had extra fun since we were there with four other families from preschool, so waiting for it to start passed by very quickly. I know he loved being there with all his friends and cousins (especially since they're usually in Japan by this time), so it's going to continue to be an annual tradition (it's his 3rd year!) for us.
I truly appreciate the effort people and local businesses put into hosting the parade...it's those kind folks and the people who do things like string a million lights across their home that truly make Christmas special for children. So thank you if you're one of those people!
And without further ado...I present to you Ryan's stirring rendition of "Jingle Bells." Please hold your applause (and open weeping) until the entire concerto is over.
PS- On an unrelated note, I just saw on my Feedjit live feed that someone from Plano, TX. stopped by earlier this evening. And um...hellloooooo, I know it's you Lance! Are you coming back to Kona to train soon and checking in on your woman?
Wednesday, December 08, 2010
However, once I had him try them on, I became overcome by guilt at the thought of such decadence for a 2-year old, so I took this photo to email it to Rich at work to see what he thought (because we all know if our spouses are on board with the purchase = NO guilt!). In the meantime, about an hour later, I got a call from my friend Yuri, who said she was at Macy's getting Ryan the pantsuit!!! :-) How amazing was that? Granted, I had mentioned wanting to get it for him to her the day before on our walk, but what are the odds that she would be standing at the same rack I was at minutes before?
So little Rizzle gets his snazzy flight outfit after all! :-) Now he and Ty can prowl around town like two peas in a pod, picking up chics!
Speaking of men about town, I was the lucky lady who got to take four of them out last night to Bubba's Gumps for some fun!
Tuesday, December 07, 2010
Anyway- in addition to Christmas parades, festivals, company parties and visits to Santa, we also get to busy ourselves with friends and family visiting from out of town (hello Mayer's & Krenitsky's!), going Christmas shopping and baking (yesterday the kitchen was humming from sun up to sundown baking 13 loaves of walnut banana bread, coconut macadamia nut fudge and pumpkin-spiced granola)! So all in all, the month goes by quickly, but blessedly full of life and good food. Because let's not forget one of the main attractions of the season- mint-flavored chocolate chips. Why those only hit the store shelves once a year is beside me, but face it, it's a cultural flaw in our nation's fabric. And I intend to fix that before I die.
One final thing that I really enjoy doing at the end of the year is figuring out our charitable giving situation. We've never had a set budget of how much we'll give throughout the year, but if there is a trend in our giving, I'd have to say it's that we tend to contribute locally (vs. internationally), to those that we know either directly or indirectly (vs. larger aid organizations), and to those in immediate need. As much as I would LOVE to donate to every friend walking or running for a cure, to the American Red Cross efforts in Haiti or the church bake sale...we somehow always end up giving it to honest, hardworking folk who've just come upon hard times. I have read of the wisdom of creating a goal and a budget for your charitable giving, and while I agree that it makes perfect sense...I would hate to have to say no to the sweet adolescent kid selling candy outside of the grocery store. :-(
We informally tallied up our annual giving a few days ago to see where we stood, and Rich and I were surprised to realize that we've actually already given three to four times more this year than other years. I guess it's just a sign of the times that there is just so much more need out there. (Sidenote: in the interest of honesty, we're far from philanthropists. We're not even close to being ten percenters...so this is not a sly way of throwing ourselves a shout out!) Nonetheless, we've decided that we'd like to do one more give this year...and we think we've identified who it is, we just have to do some behind-the-scenes research to make sure.
Ryan is still a little too young to understand the spirit of giving this year (he keeps asking me where certain toys are that have been donated and then says "Awwww!" in an exasperated tone when I tell him they are being shared with another little boy or girl). He then tries to guess which little boy or girl it is by naming every single friend he has trying to see if he can get it back! He also caught me trying to put two trucks of his in a giveaway box and quickly toddled after me pleading, "Please leave at home! Please leave at home!" So we have hope for next year- when we pray his cold little heart will be a little more sharing! :-)
Monday, December 06, 2010
Sunday, December 05, 2010
Look at that face! He's ecstatic!
Later in the day, it was time to get dressed up for Daddy's company Christmas party down at the Sheraton Keauhou (or as Ryan said in the car all the way down to the party, "I look fancy fancy!"). And because someone "won" a necklace filled with bubbles at the Winterfest (really, it cost us $2), he insisted on wearing it all night long! ;-)
Not to be outdone...in the spirit of the holidays, I too, decided to pull out all the stops for the big event. First, I made sure to use my expensive hair conditioner in the shower (and not my usual cheap one). Then, after my bath, I used my mini desk fan to dry my hair (I don't own a hairdryer). Since I didn't paint my nails and don't own any make up, I had also thought about applying lotion to my semi-dry legs to really gussy myself up, but opted against it because it would have made my hands temporarily sticky. Plus I was already too tired from doing all that other stuff. To be honest, I had hoped other partygoers would notice these extra special (admittedly only 2) preparations I took to look fancy fancy, but I never did receive any compliments... ???!!!
For some reason, Ryan ended up being the first kid on Santa's lap again (he was last year too). I love this pic since you can see him giving Santa the sideways "Who the heck is this dude?!" look.
And just like last year, our son came alive once the dance music and disco lights starting flashing! I think he clocked a solid two hours (out of the three that we were there) on the dance floor! The only time he didn't dance was when we were trying to eat, during which he kept trying to climb out of his chair saying "I just want to dance!"
Here's homeboy gettin' down on the dancefloor! This is about an hour and a half past his normal bedtime by the way... You can see his energy starting to flag here...ha ha. It was really neat that two of Ry's classmates from preschool were there too (since all three of their daddies work at the hospital together). So Ry got to run around with both of them (that's one of them, Landen, trailing behind him)!
I'm pretty sure that if Ry had his way, he would have stayed until the party shut down, but we finally dragged him away from the dance floor around 9:30!
Thursday, December 02, 2010
It's also birthday time! Last week we celebrated Riki's, next week we celebrate T Dizzle's & Grammy Kay's, and then the week after that it's my brother Jon's! Oh, and then that Jesus guy. ;-)
Oh, and on a separate note, we finally figured out why the bottom half of our tree never seems to have any ornaments on it!
Not that Ryan is opposed to ALL Christmas decor. Can you tell which side of the oven I let him apply our ornament gel clings to? Guess! It's a real doozy!
The Christmas cookie booty for Rich's coworkers!
What does an exhausted little 2-year old do to unwind after throwing ornaments all day? He relaxes at Starbucks of course! (We were actually there for storytime with some friends.)
Who needs a handyman to help string up their lights? Warning: He's not cheap (but he is kinda cute).