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When your race medals don’t even hit the wall anymore because your toddler loves to play with them

When your race medals don't even hit the wall anymore because your toddler loves to play with them. #blog #mylittlehumaniscrazy | June 14, 2016 at 12:18PM
When your race medals don’t even hit the wall anymore because your toddler loves to play with them. #blog #mylittlehumaniscrazy

Saturday, in photos

I’m thankful for calendar reminders that alert me when I forget to write something down on my actual planner. Case in point: I signed up for a symposium on data and journalism sometime in April. Then I kind of forgot about it. I knew, just knew, I had something going on this weekend, but I couldn’t remember what.

Queue emails sent from event organizers. And a Google calendar alert.

I’m so incredibly glad I didn’t miss it. I would have kicked myself if afterwards I realized it too late (or even worse, realized it as it started).

Sam actually was heading into the Bay Area on Saturday morning, so I hitched a ride to a BART station near Castro Valley to get to the University of California, Berkeley campus. The event was free to J-School alumni (super stoked about that).

I think all the walking I did qualifies as some sort of exercise. Yes?


The main entrance to campus. A powwow was being set up there. Later in the day, I accidentally walked into a Queer Conference while trying to navigate to one of the cleaner bathrooms on campus I know (most exciting thing about that was the bathroom I went into was designated a “gender friendly” bathroom, welcoming men and women, I thought that was pretty cool). In total, I saw three homeless guys napping on lawns. And I saw a drama open house/demonstration being set up at the base of a hall.

All those reasons? That’s why I love Berkeley.


I made my way up from the BART station in downtown Berkeley. There’s no real direct route up though campus, really there are no direct routes through campus in general.

So I slowed down a little and took in Berkeley’s park-like atmosphere.


I also got some walking hill work done. Berkeley’s campus has a lot of hills. Some brutal and mostly upward. Others rolling. I wasn’t much of a runner while I went to school here, but imagine the hill training possibilities on the campus?

It’s no wonder I used to see the ROTC programs running through campus.


The all-day long event brought out an array of speakers. There were six sessions, with question and answer periods. There was a breakfast buffet and a networking lunch, too.

The topics included a detailed look into policy in the afternoon. Questions of ethics were broached too. One of the things that came up a couple times was new ethical issues in data presentation and journalism that weren’t even considerations a couple years ago.

I didn’t go for credit at school or anything. (I filled my outside of class required time earlier this semester with the three-day journalism conference where I literally work all hours I’m awake.) I did it because some of the key concepts taught can be applied to my community college classroom. I’m already writing some of it into the curriculum for next fall.


Speaking of lunch, these cookies were served. I’m not sure exactly what they were (don’t worry, the green on the plate is from a pesto pasta), but they were delicious. It was a brown sugar, pecan melt-in-your-mouth kind of cookie. I’ll admit it, I ate two. I was tempted to grab another one. I really, really wanted to.

The event ended at about 3:45 p.m. I realized I likely couldn’t get back to the train to make the train I thought I would. So I decided to take a longer stroll through campus. That included taking in some of my favorite sights.


The Campanile is one of those landmarks that can be seen throughout the entire Bay Area. The first time I visited the campus in 2004, when I was considering applying for admission, my husband and I went up and got a bird’s eye view of the area. I remember going up again, right before I graduated and looking around. It was one of those capstones of my two years in graduate school.


Sather Gate is about as well known as the plaza in which is stands. Sproul Plaza was the center of the Free Speech Movement once upon a time. You walk through the area, even now with it’s fenced-in buildings and can’t help but feeling connected to history. But there’s a sense of history nearly everywhere you step at Berkeley.


I headed back down to the BART station and made my train. Despite sitting most of the day, I had kind of walked all over the place to get to and from the symposium.

The train ride back was less eventful than the one there, which involved watching a guy to pull ups on the overhead hand bars in a train car. By 5:30 p.m. I was back in car heading toward home.

That’s when Sam asked if I wanted sushi.

Of course I wanted sushi.


That’s the orders of Sam, her son and me. Her son ordered this roll called the “Titanic.” There was so much fish in it that it kind of fell apart everywhere. That’s why it has the name it does, Sam’s son told me. I got a deep-fried California roll because I really wanted something with a tempura texture.

After a long day in and around the Bay Area, it was glorious.


A little wine and a mini True Blood marathon later and I was in bed exhausted. I’m supposed to run mid-length to long run today, but I’m holding out until later this afternoon or this evening. I’m going to try to at least hit eight miles. I kind of feel like I have to do some sort of running today to at least put a dent in all the good food I ate yesterday.

The cookie isn’t going to burn itself off. Neither is the amazing sushi.

I’m kind of using this weekend as a rest for the next two. On May 11, I have the Mermaid Run Sirena 18. On May 18, I’m flying to Portland for the night with Sam to run the Rock ‘n’ Roll Half Marathon.

Then I get a week of downtime before three weekends full of racing.

Things are about to get very hectic.

My week, in photos

Because it’s been a long, crazy week. And I only ran 10 of my 15 miles on Saturday then worked all day. So I present, my week, in photos.


I woke up late Tuesday because I had turned down the ringer on my phone for some reason. I literally threw myself together to so I could be at school by my student’s 9 a.m. lab start. I was greeted, just before 9 a.m., to this site right outside my building.

Fire alarm.

We waited outside for about 20 minutes before getting the all clear.


Speaking of school, college students are a much more lively bunch than high school, middle school or elementary school bunches. Why? They are funny, in a subtle way.

I found this gem of a posting right outside my office. It speaks to my inner dork and brings me back to my original Nintendo playing days.

Who didn’t love The Legend of Zelda? I remember walking into the little caves to get the all impressive sword. With final weeks coming up soon (we finish the semester in mid May), I thought this was rather appropriate.


My Boston shirt came in the mail today. It’s HUGE on me, but I don’t care because all proceeds go to One Fund Boston. It’s also a crazy bright yellow, which means everyone will see me wearing it a mile away.

It’s cotton, so I won’t be wearing it at night when I’m running. But I love this shirt, if only because it represents runners helping runners.


I went to a spaghetti dinner hosted by my friend’s daughter’s school. It was only $5 a plate and it benefited all the cool things elementary school’s do for children (which essentially means I’m not 100-percent sure what the money is going to, but it’s a good cause I’m sure). The lovely item above is the centerpiece for the tables.

My trip to the small adjacent town next to where I live also included visiting my friend’s severely burned home. She’s not living there currently. But a cedar chest she was partial too was damaged pretty significantly in the fire. She was told to call it a loss.

I saw it and realized it wasn’t. In my ample spare time (ha!), I refinish furniture. Mostly all my own to this point. I told her all I need was some time with it and I could make it as good as new. Maybe better. New stain, new finish. So after we ate a plate of spaghetti each and stayed for a raffle/silent auction (she took away a nice entertainment-based basket for her children) we headed over to casa-de-crisp and picked up the chest.

I backed my Jeep onto her non-existent lawn. My husband got it in the car.

The good news is construction for the rebuild/renovation of her house started this week. The bad news is that it won’t be done until October.


My husband is back to working normal shifts at his job, which means he has more time on the weekends to do things like cook. And vacuum. And generally not be a zombie.

He’s pretty excited to go back to 9/80 schedules (five days one week, four days the next, making every other weekend a three-day weekend). I’m excited to have him back too.

He made steak and corn on the cob on his grill on Saturday night. It was delicious.


All that work I was doing Friday? It carried into Saturday. And will carry into today.

One of the things on my to-do list is FEMA-based training for school. In order to continue to be “eligible for employment” in the community college system I work in, I have to finish this mandated training. I’ve put if off a long time. It’s due May 9. I took a test for one of two lessons tonight. I’m waiting for the response in my work email.

I took a photo of this because the first “action” talks about “planned events” such as “First Night festivities” and “Fourth of July celebrations.” Both are really specific. In the middle of that it says “the marathon.” I know it has to be applied to all municipalities (this course focused on the National Incident Management System), but “the marathon” is so vague it’s funny.