For all the blossoming, warmth, and other beacons of the new season, it seems like this has been a rocky week for a lot of folks. Two of my friends are dealing with the end of their respective relationships. A family friend of Robin Hood’s passed away. And, though comparatively minor, I was on the… Continue reading Handling the Hard Miles
I knew the hills would be beastly. I knew this, and I still walked away from that finish line with renewed respect for them. Not to mention renewed humility. I had run Albuquerque’s Shamrock Shuffle several times. Unlike many of the city’s races, which are in the Rio Grande valley and mostly flat, this one… Continue reading Race Report: Shamrock Shuffle 10k
I’ve got some sort of inter-seasonal itch. I’m ready for winter to be over, but I’m not ready for spring to start quite yet, because that will require coming up with a garden-planting strategy, not to mention having to address all those weeds that are sprouting up like…you know…weeds. I’m unsteadily balancing between the seasons,… Continue reading Spring Cleaning
As a rule, my husband and I aren’t a fancy couple. We like our jeans and t-shirts, we’re okay with dirt and sweat, and we live, happily, in a home built in 1970. But, of course, there are exceptions to every rule. Earlier this year, we received an email from the Department of Game and… Continue reading Game, Fish, and Glamour
It’s the kind of vacation I want to cling to, one I’ve been reluctant to write about because that will mean it’s irrevocably in the past. I don’t want it to be in the past, especially not when I can still hear my aunt’s laughter, and see my youngest niece doing a toddle-dance around her… Continue reading Once Upon a Disney World Dream
I didn’t want to make a fuss over this 10k, but that proved difficult. This was my first formal race in over a year, and I couldn’t help feeling nervous and excited. I told Robin Hood that I had caterpillars in my belly — not quite full-fledged butterflies, but there they were, crawling around, rendering… Continue reading Ah, Racing, We Meet Again!
Ten years ago this weekend, I arrived in Albuquerque. That weekend, a light snow fell, I watched the Super Bowl with my brother and parents, and I had no earthly clue what the future had in store. I didn’t think I would stay for this long, but God loves surprises, and here I am. I… Continue reading Celebrating a Decade in the Duke City
To prepare for the 10k that I’m running in a couple of weeks — whoa, make that next weekend (!) — I’ve eased some weekend long runs into my routine. Come race day, I want to focus on the race, not whether I’ll be huffing and puffing at the 6-mile marker. How very far away… Continue reading Just Keep Showing Up
My yoga class was scheduled for 8 am on Sunday. After some working-backwards schedule calculation, I set my alarm for 6:45. Since I don’t often get up at 6:45 on Sundays unless I have a race to run, I laid out all of my gear the night before. I figured the less thinking I had… Continue reading Stretching, Sweating, Strengthening: My Return to Hot Yoga
Remember how I said that my theme word this year is faith? Well, this week I decided to take a leap of it. Two leaps, actually. I’ve been thinking for weeks…okay, months…that I’d like to get back into running local races. Nothing in the double-digit-mileage distances that would require an extended training plan, nothing with… Continue reading Here We Go!
I’m getting over a cold and it feels weird. Let me be clear that I am very thankful to be getting OVER said cold. A few nights ago, I could barely breathe unless my mouth was wide open (nothing says “cozy” like a big ol’ drool splotch on your pillow). Tissues littered the floor next… Continue reading When Life Hands You a Cold, Make a Popsicle.
First off: a very Happy Birthday to my friend Emily, and all you other New Year’s babies out there! Is there birthday cake with champagne-flavored frosting? There should be. Now then. How was everyone’s 2016? The end of the year always lends itself to a certain amount of navel-gazing, or in my case (and maybe… Continue reading New Year’s Eve 2016
Greetings from the couch next to our Christmas tree! I just got back from a run — the first one this winter that actually required a hat, brrrr — and I’m sipping nutmeg-laced eggnog as I sit here and steal a moment. Note: whoever says eggnog isn’t the ideal post-run refreshment is a fool. Robin… Continue reading Five Days Before Christmas
Unless you live in tropical climates, your exercise options these days are as follows: Skip it! There are cookies to be devoured and shopping to be done. Shopping counts as cardio, and stirring cookie dough makes for a passable upper-body workout. Do it indoors at a gym or yoga studio, accepting the crowds who want… Continue reading Running in the Cold: It’s Not All Bad, I Swear
Once upon a sunny afternoon, I got into my car and turned my key in the ignition, ready to head home and start the evening. Except nothing happened. The car wouldn’t start. After jumping it and taking it to a service shop, the diagnosis was: dead battery. Dead with a capital D. Thankfully, it didn’t… Continue reading The Battery Lesson
I’ve been thinking about lights lately. They’re pretty under-rated. They do a lot: they illuminate darkness so that we can see; they lead us in the right direction; they warn us of danger; they signal welcome; they bring cheer and comfort. I think about lights when I’m walking the dog in the early-morning darkness. Semi-darkness,… Continue reading Friday Morning Lights
I had no frame of reference for Red River, New Mexico before last weekend, other than knowing it was a mountain resort town in the northern part of the state, not far from Taos. But then Robin Hood came up with the idea that we should go, so we went, and now I have LOTS… Continue reading Off is the New On: Red River in November
That time is upon us, folks. On Sunday, we turn our clocks back (especially important to note if you’re running a certain 26.2-mile footrace in New York). Tuesday is, of course, Election Day. And as of November 1, there are radio stations playing…yes…24/7 Christmas music. While I love (LOVE) the idea, the dream, of putting… Continue reading Time to Break Out the Comforters
Yes, hunting trips can be fun, and are an effective means to a good, thorough mood cleanse, as I’ve noted. But other times? Other times, I just want to…not go. Because, folks, as much as I love the great outdoors and hanging out with my super-cool husband, being able to sleep in past 5:30 is… Continue reading Sometimes the Best Part of Hunting Season is Not Hunting
I used to participate on my friend Charity’s hot air balloon crew much more often. Now, for various reasons, I only do it during Balloon Fiesta. I’m just not willing to let go completely — there are too many memories and too many good people involved. When I do get out to crew, I’m reminded… Continue reading The Time I Saw Ballooning’s Nylon Ceiling Rip Wide Open
I had no intention of going hunting with Robin Hood last weekend, but circumstances changed and there we were, driving towards the Gila National Forest on Friday night. Gear was stacked in the back of the truck with a strategy to rival that of a Tetris tower. Ann was curled up on a blanket, and… Continue reading Fixing the Inside with the Outside
I don’t know about you, but by the end of most Fridays, I’m ready for a big ol’ nap, followed by a glass of wine and an episode or two of Parks and Recreation, followed by another nap. Today’s no exception. But rather than focus on things that make me tired, I’m going to focus… Continue reading Remembering to Say Thank You
We left Saturday afternoon and drove towards Socorro. In the truck we had packed an assortment of clothes, sleeping gear, plentiful water, a large cooler’s worth of sandwiches and snacks, and two shotguns. We were ready for dove hunting. This hunt wasn’t in the wilderness of northern New Mexico among tall pines and reassuring streams,… Continue reading When Doves Hide
It was one of the best yoga classes I’ve ever been to. A dozen or so of us sweated in the warmth of an Arizona August morning and worked through poses as patiently guided by the instructor. Many of us had barely known each other 24 hours earlier, but by the time the yoga class… Continue reading Bachelorette Party + Yoga + Dinosaurs = Yes, Please.
It’s been a heady week. Last weekend, we took Ann to a dog park for the first time ever. She’s been around other dogs when we visit or camp with friends, and she’s been fine (perhaps “ecstatic” would be a better word). But the off-the-leash, stranger-dogs, full-on dog park experience? New territory. I am delighted… Continue reading Oh the Excitement!
Our relationship with the Olympics has gotten complicated. Millions of people will watch the Opening Ceremonies in Rio de Janeiro tonight, but how many people will be whole-heartedly, unabashedly excited? With more and more tough-love scrutiny (read this and this), not to mention the banning of over half of the Russian team due to doping,… Continue reading Swifter, Higher, Stronger
When you exit I-25 at Las Vegas, New Mexico, drive through the town, and keep on driving, things get rural really fast. One minute you’re zipping north at 80 miles per hour; the next you’re doing 25 past forest-fringed fields dotted with horses and the occasional deer. It’s pretty cool. A group of us went… Continue reading Camping: Just Do It.
Forget frying an egg. Saturday was hot enough that you could have made a whole stinkin’ frittata on the sidewalk. Conditions were sublime for a trip to the beach, running through sprinklers, or just sitting in rapt stillness in an air-conditioned room. What did my husband and I do? We ignored all that sensible noise,… Continue reading Finding Beauty: the Los Poblanos Lavender Festival
Robin Hood and I celebrated our first wedding anniversary last weekend! I’ll get to the mushy stuff in a bit, but first the fun part. As you probably gathered from last week’s post, my husband and I take our celebrating seriously. This most definitely applies to anniversaries. First, we went to get massages. Roll your… Continue reading And the World Will Know…We’ve Been Married for a Year!
There are two ways to look at turning 35: 1) With gloom / mild panic, as in “I have officially entered the second half of my thirties and there’s still so much that I want to do with my life.” 2) As a reason to celebrate, and an occasion from which to wring every possible… Continue reading Those Times I Turned 35
Whew. For the last nine weekdays, I’ve been driving back and forth between Albuquerque and Santa Fe, with the result that my trusty Toyota is now way overdue for an oil change AND sports a lovely crack in her windshield. The reason? Jury duty. I got summoned to show up on June 6 at the… Continue reading It’s Not Just a Civic Duty, It’s an Adventure
Happy June! I hope you’re having a delightful start to this, the finest month of the year. Okay, my birthday’s this month, so I’m a little biased. My June’s going fine, but I’m even happier to report that my May ended on a good, adventurous note – the best way to end any month, no?… Continue reading Adventures in Oryx Scouting
I hadn’t picked up my bow, much less participated in a competitive archery shoot, in a year and a half. So going into the Sandia Crest Bowhunters Association’s annual traditional shoot, my expectations for myself weren’t high. I figured my main goal would just be to have fun and enjoy a Saturday in the East… Continue reading Recurve My Heart: The SCBA Traditional Archery Shoot
I’m getting to know my new neighborhood. It has friendly people, tall trees, at least two coyotes, and…hills. Lots of them. You can’t hardly walk half a mile without sloping downwards or upwards. I like it, though. Living with hills teaches you things. I’ve been toddling through a particularly…robust season, on all fronts: home, work,… Continue reading The Secret to Climbing Hills? Just Keep Moving.
I thought I had lost my running shoes. Days of planning, packing, unpacking, packing more, coordinating, frustrations, victories…and now this? It was a low point in the moving process. Thankfully, my concern – ok, mild panic – only lasted about 24 hours. I found the shoes, and all, for the moment, was well. And yes,… Continue reading The Emotional Roller Coaster Known as Moving
I had heard turkeys were wiley, and thought about that as I packed. I wondered if I would even see one, and if I did, could I get close enough for a decent shot? That concern didn’t gain much purchase – I was excited. Robin Hood and I hadn’t hunted since December, and we hadn’t… Continue reading Gobble! Or: My Introduction to Turkey Hunting
We bought a house. It’s ours! We closed on it yesterday. Now for a luxuriously long exhale…ahhhhhhhhhh. Or maybe more like “ooooffff.” “Relief” hardly begins to describe it. This is the culmination of a process that started almost four months ago, and I haven’t discussed it much here due to superstitious fear that something would… Continue reading Hey, We’re Homeowners!
Today I went for my first run in over a week. Why the hiatus? Well, let’s just say it involved a nice phlegmy cough that left me with energy for little more than slumping on the couch and finally learning the appeal of watching Netflix for hours. Speaking of Netflix, if you haven’t yet watched… Continue reading Motivation and the Long Arm of the Boston Marathon
It’s true: I had never been to Vegas before. At least not since I was old enough to remember. I wanted to go! I wanted to channel Clark Griswold, and to walk along the Strip, and to taste a “free” beverage (yeah, free, after giving $20 to the slot machine). So when our friends Kurt… Continue reading My First Trip to Las Vegas
Five. Five! Five years ago I claimed my own tiny corner of the Internet and started this blog. My first post looked like this: https://runningsunflower.wordpress.com/2011/04/02/zen-and-the-purple-running-shoes/. No, I don’t still have those purple shoes. Yes, I still inhale every new pair. If Running Sunflower were a child, I would be sending it toddling off to kindergarten… Continue reading Running Sunflower is THIS Many!
In Albuquerque, you know it’s truly springtime when there are blossoms all over…the ground. The wind. The wind has arrived. I don’t mean a brisk, refreshing breeze. This is the kind of wind that is the very definition of “blustery.” It whips blossoms off trees, it knocks over trash cans like they were toys, and… Continue reading Lessons From a Blustery Day
First, happy belated St. Patrick’s Day! If you’re like me and you’re attending a who-cares-about-the-calendar celebration this weekend, have fun, dance a jig or two, and may the luck of the Irish be with you. Now let’s get on to the bigger news: Ann, the redbone coonhound that Robin Hood and I brought home the… Continue reading Happy First Birthday, Ann!
What virtue do you find yourself continually working on? For me, it’s patience: patience with myself, patience with others, and, especially these days, patience with life. Too often, I see a bright glimmer on the horizon and I want to get there NOW. I tell myself, I’ve done the work! I’m doing the work! I’m… Continue reading Patience
The trees in my neighborhood are blossoming! Birds are twittering non-stop (without needing any hashtags, thank you very much) and warm weather has dog-walkers, cyclists, runners, and other outdoor-minded citizens popping up like weeds. Spring may not officially be here, but she’s peering around the corner pretty indiscreetly. Tennyson wrote, “In the Spring a… Continue reading On Spring and First Loves
I think I’m experiencing delayed onset hibernation syndrome. Maybe it has something to do with the weather, which suddenly got much colder and drearier after a week of lovely, spring-like conditions. I know, I know, it’s SUPPOSED to be cold and dreary this time of year, but that doesn’t make it any easier. Or maybe… Continue reading Leap!
I hadn’t really planned on watching the Olympic Marathon Trials. We don’t have cable, and while our Internet connection works fine for day-to-day stuff, for livestreams it’s…lacking. As fortune would have it, though, late Saturday morning I found myself at home with nothing urgent to do. I eyed my computer. Okay, I said. I’ll give… Continue reading The Women’s Olympic Marathon Trials
I know not everyone likes Valentine’s Day, but I choose to love it for the following reasons [don’t worry, they’re not all mushy. Several are downright crunchy.]: V – Vino! Red wine and Valentine’s Day go together like Bonnie and Clyde. Maybe that’s not the best example. Romeo and Juliet? Darn it…okay, chocolate and peanut… Continue reading Reasons to Love Valentine’s Day, Acrostic-Style
During my freshman year of college, the thing to do (for girls, anyway) was to make expansive collages. We would sift through magazines, looking for pictures and phrases that inspired or amused us. Then we would cut them out and glue them to whatever surface needed decorating: notebooks, binders, boxes, or good old posterboard for… Continue reading Never Underestimate the Power of a Tuesday Night
I needed a hilly run last Sunday morning, so to the hills I went. As I ran up and down along one of my favorite routes, I got to thinking (so easy to do on weekend runs, no?) about the “need” for hills. Why is it that on some days, I regard hilly runs with… Continue reading What Gives You Strength?
We all have projects that get shuffled to the side during the holidays. After New Year’s, when we’ve put away the decorations and we’re rubbing our eyes and re-entering the orbit of normal life, those projects inch back up the priority list. Then one day, the stars align in just the right way, and suddenly:… Continue reading Hanging Pictures