Wednesday, October 2, 2019

A fun evening at the beach

a few weekends ago, we gathered the chillins and pack up our beach gear and headed from the lakefront.  The idea was to meet up with some old runner friends for a reunion of sorts.  The reunion didn't happen for various reasons but we kinda knew that going in.  That's' why we designed the trip as a make good on our promise to take the kids to the beach all summer instead of a catch up with people we haven't seen in ages thing.



The weather was perfect.  The beach was not too crowded but not empty.  There was even a party going on a 100 yards or so from us which provided some background music that blended well with the serenity of the evening.



The kids had a blast.  My only wish was that we left just as it was getting dark because it is hard to gather everything when there isn't enough light and the beach seems to convert to a single peoples' place after dark when families generally go home.





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Tuesday, October 1, 2019

100 Miles to go

We are in the final quarter of 2019 and I am doing okay with my MPD goal.  Not as good as I like but
not terrible either.

If you look at my Strava September stats, you'll see 11 activities for 29 miles.  however 2 of those were junk entries to adjust for time and distance.  Because Strava won't let you adjust your miles or time.  So if you didn't restart your timer too bad.  There is also no way to see your totals for the past month because I suspect they want you to pay for the fully meshed version and I see no reason to do that.

By my calculations, we have 92 days to go and I have 100 miles left.


  • Oct  31
  • Nov 30
  • Dec 31


and I trimmed the mileage deficit down to 8 miles.  That leaves 100 miles to go.  I ran today (Oct 1st) instead of yesterday (Sept 30) because it is slightly less humid but I'm gonna pretend like I got that 3 mile run in on Monday.

During the week there are two good windows for me to go get a run.  Either way before 10 am if it's quiet, or just after my 10 am call, usually at 11 which equates to noon Eastern Time, when my colleague would be at lunch.   But if I don't get out the door by 1pm on a weekday, the run likely just isn't happening.
And some days there are just more important things to do

There are days I just cannot get out to run.  Either they are too hot, I am too busy or both. Sometimes I have other smaller projects I need to get done during the span of time that I have daylight and no kids in the way.



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Wednesday, September 25, 2019

September MPD update

As of today, Wednesday, September 25th, I have run 258 of the required 268 miles for 2019.  Once again I took a few too many days off from running which caused me to try to catch up just to September's requirements and not give me much hope of chopping into the 10 mile overall deficit from previous months.



Tomorrow I'm off from work because we have to take Moose and Squirrel to their annual checkup (they turned 5 last weekend!).  I don't suspect I'll get any running in, which is a good thing because I need a rest day.  On Friday I should be able to knock out at least 3-4 miles.  If  I don't run over the weekend, again I'm rested for Monday which can be another 3-4 miles.  That means I would have chipped 1-3 miles off that 10 mile deficit!


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Tuesday, September 3, 2019

Labor Day Fun

This was perhaps one of the best Labor Days I can remember in a long time. That's not to say the last
few have sucked or anything but this one had the right combination of just enough to do to keep busy but not too much to be overscheduled.

Nightingale had taken most of last week off in an attempt to get the house better organized and work on some pet projects and also maybe engage in some personal she-time (massage, pedicure, etc).  However, Boris and Natasha decided to get sick and couldn't go to Daycare on Wednesday and Thursday, which blew a lot of that out of the water.

They were healthy enough to go to Daycare on Friday and Nightingale managed to purge a bunch of toys from the attic and other play areas.  We dropped off a big load at the Salvation Army on Saturday on the way to Taste of Polonia.



For once, the weather was just right for this event.  Not too hot, not too cold, no rain (well a little late afternoon once we decided to leave).  We put our kids in the bounce house and they spent a good combined 3 hours there burning off energy.  Last year it was too hot and it had rained the day before so the houses were a little waterlogged.

The other thing that made it easier as it was just us.  While we love meeting up with someone, the downside to that is balancing agendas.  Since it was just us we didn't have to worry about seating for a lot of people or who wanted to do what.  We just took turns looking at things and then spent a boatload of money on Polish food. 

I did run into a pseudo-friend from the No-Name Software Company.  This was a person who I thought we were better friends but I overestimated my value.  A couple years ago at the annual event, we were chatting and she asked if I was staying for dinner.  I wanted to catch up and get the backstory and company gossip but didn't realize that she was just making conversation.


Sunday it rained in the morning so it wasn't conducive to go outside.  We let the kids stay in which was more for our benefit than theirs.



On Monday we met Katness at a pool in Wilmette and even though it was colder than normal, we managed to make it until about 2:45 pm.  Then we went back to her place and had a cookout for dinner.

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Monday, August 26, 2019

Monday Monday Monday

I've been working on projects around the house all year (and last year) in order to put the house on the market.  We made the decision to wait until Spring to list.  While I think the major items have been addressed, there are still some smaller items that need looking into. 

By then we should also have better answers about my job uncertainty and where we want to live.  If a miracle that allows us to stay in Chicago doesn't occur, we ship the kids off to grandparents in the Memphis area and stag the house for selling.  With the money we save on Daycare we should be able to not only buy a nice home but put a sizable down payment so that we pay it off quickly.

Meanwhile, we are both going to explore some lateral job moves that might allow us to stay here.  I'd love a setup where we have homes in both places so we get a good school system on the cheap but also the amenities of a blue city.



I just got back from the Post Office.  We ordered a Hugglepod stand which should have arrived on the 15th.  It didn't and I contacted the USPD.  Setup re-delivery for the 21st...didn't happen.  Set up re-delivery for the 24th, didn't happen.   I decided to go in person since our local PO is just down the street from our kids daycare.  wouldn't you know it that today is raining so bad, they had flooding and were not taking customers!  I kinda threw a fit and someone asked what I needed.  Told him and he found someone to look for me.  After about 25 minutes they found my missing package.  I asked what happened and he said, on the sly, that it must have been a female carrier who didn't want to lift the heavy (32 lbs) package.

Whether that is true or not, we have had both male and female carriers delivering over this span.  Surely someone could have delivered it by now?

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Monday, August 19, 2019

August MPD update

I had this sorta but not so crazy idea that for the month of August I would try to run 2 miles a day every day.  This would theoretically bring me to 62 miles for the month which would not only get the 31 miles needed for August, but would also knock out the 18-mile deficit and give me a 13-mile surplus going into September.

Life doesn't quite work that way but as of right now, I have 23 miles for 19 days of August.  With 12 days left in the month, I need 26 more miles to break even.  Given that I'm not getting runs in on the weekend, it is more realistic that I get the remaining 8 miles for August and chip away at the 18 mile deficit, perhaps halving it.

July was hot, hot, hot.  My beautiful green lawn is now a burned yellow hay patch.  I also had some knee issues so I took a strategic week off to see if that would make a difference.  I ended up with an extra 7 mile deficit that I probably could have made smaller just by doing 1 mile per day on the treadmill.


Month      Goal Actual
Jan-Feb 59 59
March 31 25
April 30 18
May 31 38
June 30 30
July 31 24
212 194


Why I think I'll succeed:  If I can go into September only being 9 miles behind, I should be able to catch up.  I run more during the fall when it's cooler and I don't have yard work or outside chores to compete with my free time. 

Why I think I won't:  I hate having to follow a schedule and there are days when I just want to kick back and not go out for a run or do anything. 

I'm averaging 28 miles a month so I should at least pass my usual 300 miles per year.


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Tuesday, July 23, 2019

Stage 5: install quarter rounds on the six steps

I finally got around to buying, painting and installing the quarter rounds for the front porch.  I wasn't in a rush to finish this project, but I didn't think it would still be technically going on this year.

To be fair, last summer every day was either brutally hot or very wet.

Anyway, I bought the quarter rounds but didn't get around to painting them until this year.  I was pleased to find that the local Crafty Beaver not only had them but would cut them to size.

For a while, I thought my nail gun was broken.  Turns out it was just a faulty battery and I had a spare.  But the nails kept jamming.  Turns out that while nailguns prevent you from putting the nails in upside down, they cannot prevent you from putting them in backward.










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