Crohn's Walk + Pearl Jam

photos: Sue, a noise maker and my niece.

My sister Sue has Crohn's Disease. Last weekend was the third year we've walked as a family as a show of support and hope for a cure for Sue and the 1.4 million American adults and children suffering from digestive diseases.

We met at Warner Park in Madison for about a two-mile family-friendly walk. I'm impressed with the Take Steps, Be Heard for Crohn's & Colitis Chapter and the event: great route, energy, food and music.

Our family really enjoyed the time walking together through a pretty area of Madison and the kids raced ahead the whole way. After eating celebration cookies, the kids tossed sticks into the lake as we kicked back and enjoyed the view.

photos: Warner Park, my niece and Warner Beach.

photos: Warner Park, and the group at the start (even though this side of the sign says finish).

- Pearl Jam founding member and lead guitarist Mike McCready recently donated his time to create a radio public service announcement (PSA) series on behalf of the Crohn's & Colitis Foundation to raise critical awareness for Crohn's disease and ulcerative colitis. He's had Crohn's for 24 years. Listen to the clips here.

Questions for You:

- What causes are important to you or your family?

- Have you heard of Crohn's?

- Have you been to a Pearl Jam concert? (I saw two.) "Black" is one of my favorites.

photos by me

Spring Flowers - Outside Explore: Tune in or out?

(tulip photos by me)

From's Daily Kick in the Butt:
"Every day, I stop halfway through my run for five minutes, look around, and enjoy the surroundings. I'm reminded of why I do this and why I love it so much."
-- Anita Ortiz

(tulip photos by me)

And from, Leslie Goldman's feature on distance-runner Diane Van Deren.
Van Deren processes time differently as a result of a lobectomy she had in 1997 to help with Epilepsy. Learn more about this incredible athlete, her success with distance running and how she uses sticky notes to find her way.

Questions for You:
- What do you notice while training outside?
- Do you stop to take things in while on a run or ride? Or are you all business?
- Thoughts on distance running and the ability to tune out past miles?
- What's your favorite use for sticky notes?

Endurance + Creative: FUN!

As endurance athletes, we may be quiet pre-race, but once we cross the finish, we like to talk about our race experience, reliving the good and bad. We gather in circles with our race buddies, talk with our families, take notes on the drive home or call up our friends and family.

Our experiences matter
, so let's extend and celebrate them.

Last fall, as part of my triathlon manuscript project, I helped my friend Kim brainstorm image ideas for triathlon and endurance-themed stamp sets.

There are few resources for scrapbooking or card-making triathletes and I knew Kim's company Raisin Boat would come up with a final product worth talking about!

Talking about triathlon creatively was SO fun! I dragged out gear, tri magazines, books and demonstrated all the crazy fun that goes with our sport! I gave her concept ideas, style suggestions and talked about current trends and demographics within triathlon. It was awesome.

I also gave her a disc with nine million pictures from my families' 15+ years of triathlon events and experiences. Check the sample cards and scrapbook pages.

No more boring seen-it-already clip art--or stick people--now you have endurance-specific images to wish someone luck or preserve your own training and racing experience.

all samples designed by Kim Ziehr or Bobbi Lemanski

Check out all four Endurance sets:

Raisin Boat is the first company to offer online stamp rental, like a netflix for stamps. You can rent or buy stamp sets. Kim and her friend Bobbie created Raisin Boat, you can read more about them and the company here. Special note: I think Kim is awesome & she is my friend. But it's important to clarify that I am not getting money from sales. Like Raisin Boat on facebook.

Questions for You:
- How do you preserve your race experience? Save the bib? Take notes? Photos?
- What's the best good luck/well done endurance card you've received or given?

A Run with Mom & Little Fockers

I was about six in this picture, but I remember my run with mom pretty well. After wrapping up this classic runner's stretch we walked through our garage and onto the sidewalk good to go.

Because our house in Minnesota was at the bottom of a hill it didn't matter what direction we turned, we would start uphill. But, we were ready. We had on sweats, my hair was in a bandanna and we were wearing shoes with laces.

... Read my entire post here within GOTRIbal, an organization created to empower and connect women through the journey of endurance sport. I flew to San Diego last fall to attend GOTRIbal's conference & retreat, what an awesome weekend! See related posts:

In honor of Mother's Day weekend, here's a snippet of our life:

  • We actually replayed the vomit scene during Little Fockers this week, laughing away ... and then life pressed rewind from upstairs as our 6-yr-old projectile vomited on & out of his bunkbed and onto his brother's bunk below ... vile bile.

  • Our youngest son (3) debates most everything. But in this recent conversation with my husband, Orry was repeating everything Ken said ... well not everything.
    the scene from Orry's firetruck bed:
    Ken: "I am an elephant."
    Orry: "I am an elephant."
    Ken: "I have blue feet."
    Orry: "I have blue feet."
    Ken: "Mom is the hottest mother in the world."
    Orry: " .... no she's not!"

  • And, I saw this book title on facebook recently (thanks Vanessa) and laughed away.
    FYI: I love being a mom and it is a blessing ... even so sometimes this book title is exactly how I feel!
    The book is titled "Go the F@#k to Sleep." A sample from this TODAYMoms article:
    “The cats nestle close to their kittens.
    The lambs have laid down with the sheep.
    You're cozy and warm in your bed, my dear
    Please go the f@#k to sleep.”

    Questions for You:

  • - How are you celebrating Mother's Day?

  • - Did you like Little Fockers?

Photos: guess who?