Chez Lynne

Sunday, October 22, 2006

What I Did on My Summer Vacation

Twilight 8K Posted by Picasa

It's about friggin' time! This is my attempt to get back into my beloved blogging world. This title is a little late but oh well.

One of the main things I did this summer (other than teach and work on my thesis papers) was run. I ran a lot in an attempt to train for a half-marathon. This is one of the first races of the summer that I participated in. It was actually fun despite the horrible heat. I ran it with my friend, Diane and it was a blast. And we finished! and survived!!

Ghosts of Gettysburg

Ghost Tour Posted by Picasa

This is a picture from the fabulous ghost tour we took in Gettysburg. Even though we didn't catch anything on our camera and didn't have a ghostly experiences the stories told during the tour were so interesting. It was a good tine.

Best. Day trip. Ever!

Gettysburg Posted by Picasa

In June Zak and I went to Gettyburg, Pa. and it was so much fun!! Here's me in front of one of the canons that marks one of the battlefields. Gettysburg did make me realize that I now NOTHING about American History. I can recite the ins and outs of the French Revolution but How did I miss all this great gorey American history?

It was such an intersting place. We ate at a supposedly haunted Inn/Restaurant and went on a ghost tour. So much fun!

I'm Cursed

Lurray Caverns Posted by Picasa

It never fails. I always have the worst 4th of Julys and this year was no different. Zak and I had a long holiday weekend and decided we'd travel to Richmond, VA as well as Leesburg, Va to check out some of the haunted tours. We started out on our took us about 4 hours to go 60 miles so we gave up and came home. So instead of Richmond and Leesburg we decided to visit the Lurray Caverns instead. Luckily this allowed us to avoid a lot of traffic but the Caverns were still packed!! We waited in line forever to enter just to be stuck underground with droves of people and then waited in line forever to exit. Oh well. It was still kinda cool and now I can cross this tourist spot off my list.

But this horrible weekend did seal my thought that I am always cursed on the 4th of July holiday. Next year I'm ordering take out, renting tons of DVDS, and spending the whole weekend in my apartment in front of the air conditioner.

Mackinac Island

Mom's B-Day Posted by Picasa

I also drove to Michigan for my Mom's birthday in August. I hadn't been home in a while so it was a nice drive and a fun time. Except for the fact that my mom now has birds...noisy birds...that woke me up at 5 AM every friggin' morning with their cheerful chirping. Stupid Birds.

Luckily we spent the rest of the week at Mackinac Island-my Mom's favortie place on earth. It's this Island near the Mackinac Bridge that has banned all motor vehicles. So it's super quaint and we stayed at a cute bed and breakfast and rode bikes and ate tons of ice cream. I also ran around the Island as part of my training (8 miles). This picture was taken a couple hours after. My mom and sister are actually holding me up but the pic still turned out nice.

After this I travelled to SW Michigan to my sister's run some more.

Worst. 10K. Ever.

Wayland 10K Posted by Picasa

As I mentioned I did A LOT of running this summer to train for my half-marathon (pictures of that to come soon). This is a race I ran with my sister and brother-in-law (old running pros) in their town. I ran by best pace ever this race (10K in 1 hour and 5 minutes) but it was because I knew I was dead last and I was trying to bust ass to the finish line the entire time. My finish time would have been better but I got confused and lost a couple times-not because it was a confusing course but because I was delerious with fatigue. It was horrible.

So that was my summer in a nut shell. The rest was pretty uneventful. I worked on my thesis, started teaching again in August, and ran my half-marathon in Spetember.

Tuesday, April 18, 2006

Accidental Blogging Hiatus

Well, I'm not dead. Maybe some of you thought the poodles finally did me in but, nope, I'm still here and ready to jump back on the blogging band wagon. I can't beleive I was gone so long! It's been so busy here that I really let my blogging slide-but no more!!!
So here's what been keeping me MIA for so long:

1. Running. I'm just too tired do anything after my runs. Not even type. I've upped my usual route to 5 miles. Last week I ran aver 20 miles!

2. Work. It's nearing the end of the semester, which is always the busiest time for me. In addition to the usual lectures and preperations there are Quizzes, Finals, and papers. Just as much work for me as it is for them. I'm pretty sure I put more effort into grading these things than the kids actually put into studying or writing.

3. Trip plans. I've decided to plan a study abroad trip for my students so that's causing a lot of extra work too. Lots of hoops to jump through and all that.

4. Visits from family. Right after Zak's parents left my sister came for a visit. Atleast this is a fun distraction but a distraction none-the-less.

5. Thesis. Yeah, I'm still working on that and trying to get done by August. Keep your fingers crossed!!

Really, now that I've written this it doesn't seem like so much. Pretty much I'm a blogging slacker and need to get my act together.

5 days and I still don't look like Jessica Simpson

So I've finally succomb to all the celebrity endorsments and commercials on televesion and purchsed a trial sample of Proactive-that skin cleaning stuff. I've always had a love/hate relationship with my skin...when it looks good-it looks good. But most of the time it's ruddy and I'm forever breaking out. So, I thought, hey, if it works for P-diddy, Vanessa Williams, Jessica Simpson, and all those poor people with severe acne that it should work for me right?

Well, I don't think I'll be added to the list of success stories. First, even though it did seem to clear up my skin slightly after the first couple uses, it dried out my skin, A LOT, and made it really tight and itchy. So, I decided I would only use it a couple times a week. Well, I tried to use it again on Sunday and it burned so bad that I had to wash it off. Alas, I guess I wasn't meant to look like Jessica Simpson.

I've Always Depended on the Kindness of Strangers

A couple of Fridays ago (actually the Friday before my 6K race)I was doing my usual run around my neighborhood and suddenly a minivan stopped right in front of me. A lady hung out the window waving her arms and signaling for me to take my ear phones out. So I obliged, thinking she need directions. Instead she told me how she lives down the street and that she's me out running everyday and goes on and on about how proud she is of me and how much weight I've lost. Then she finshed by giving me a cravy thumbs up wave and drove off.

I was amazed. First I didn't realize people were starting to recognize me around the neighboorhood and second, I really don't think I've lost that much weight. It was probably just because it was a warm day and I actually got to wear a t-shirt and light pants rather than the snow pants, sweatshirts, and ski-mask I had to wear during the winter.

But either way, it's nice to get recognition and it was really nice of the lady to stop and give a complete stranger kudos. I wish I had someone around me that noticed all the hard work I was doing like a boyfriend or a hus...oh wait...

Sligo 6K

6k6 Posted by Picasa

Here are me and my good friend, Diane before starting our 6K. Look how cocky I look...little did I know...

Worst Part of the Race. Ever.

6k5 Posted by Picasa

This was the worst part of the race because I thought I was almost done and then Zak yelled at me that I still had another full loop to go. He's lucky he was so far away or I would have kicked his ass. Plus it didn't help that by this time I was being lapped by the real runners and that the speed walkers and the 90 year old were about a half mile ahead of me. I really though me and the 90 year old were going to have a battle royale to the finish but no...he kicked my ass.

Why I should carry a Diffibulator with Me

6k4 Posted by Picasa

After the race...this picture is kind of a joke...and kind of not. And no jokes about my big fat ass please, that's just too easy.

Endorphins not kicking in fast enough

6k3 Posted by Picasa

We're Cute-In a kind of sweaty, tired, disgusting kind of way

6k2 Posted by Picasa

This is the moment that I finally forgive Diane for talking me into this and decide that I won't egg her house after all.

Feeling Cocky Again

6k1 Posted by Picasa

See, this is what is wrong with running. After 10 or 15 minutes the pain starts to go away, you're able to breath again, and the endorphins start kicking in. You think you had a good time...BUT YOU DIDN'T!! And then you sign up for something else and the whole ordeal starts all over again until your true friends have an intervention and take you Chipotle. If that's not a cry for help I don't know what is...

Wednesday, March 22, 2006

Car Troubles-Now Over

zoom,zoom,zoom Posted by Picasa

After all my complaining about my recent car troubles I wanted to let you all know that they are officially over. Zak and I got a new car! We're still in panic mode from spending such a big chunk of our budget but it's worth it...especially since this means we won't be spending the big chunk on fixing a crappy car but instead put it towards a new shiny one.

It's also our first new car...ever. Our parents never bought new cars either so it's kind of weird. After tons of arguments and weeks of searching and test driving and having to beat over zealous salespeople off with sticks we decided to go with a black Mazda3. It gets great gas milleage and has a nice warranty. Which means no more car blog posts for about 4 years. Whew!

Tuesday, March 21, 2006

Tag-I'm it

I've been tagged by AB and Stacy so I guess I'd better get crackin'.

The rules are, once you've been tagged you have to write a blog with 6 weird things/habits about yourself. In the end you need to list 6 other people to tag and list their names. Don't forget to leave a comment saying "You've been tagged" in their comments and tell them to read your blog.

Here we go:

1. My OCD tendencies rear their ugly head at night. Before I go to bed I have to check the door lock at least twice, the stove, and all the burners, and then I usally make Zak go check them again anyways just to be sure. We've never left the door unlocked and the stove was left on only once for about an hour but for some reason I think each night is going to be the night that the crazy neighbor across the hall comes into our apartment to torture us and it will only end when he switches on a light and the apartment explodes from one of the burners being left on.

2. I have an extremely loud laugh and it only gets louder when I'm nervous. We went to a party the other night and I was insane with the laughing. I'm pretty sure I got some weird/dirty looks but I just can't help it.

3. I like to set my radio stations according to specific numerical codes that, for the most part, only I can understnd. For example, 101.1 is the #1 setting on my radio and 95.5 is set at, of course #5 but 107.3 is actually set at #2 because if you add 1+7+3=11 and 1+1=2 and 106.7 is set at #3 because 6+7=13 and 1+3=4 and then you minus the 1 and it's 3...yeah, crazy weird...I know. There's a movie loosely based on me,you's called "A Beautiful Mind". I say loosely because I'm not smart like the main character but everything else is pretty close.

4. I like to set my groceries in catogories when I place them on the conveyor belt to get scaned. Such as all frozen food together, all boxes together, all produce together. I say it's to be nice to the cashier bagging my goods (ha! bagging my goods-I'm naughty) but really it's because I'm weird. And I'm starting to think my OCD is rearing it's ungly head other than at night...

5. I don't think I can live without cable anymore. I've been without it for the the majority of my life but recently I've become addicted to watching reruns of my old favortie tv shows. I follow The Gilmore Girls, the X-files, and Little House on the Prairie on a regular basis even though I've seen all the episodes about a million times already.

6. Okay, last one. Gotta make this a good one...I don't know how to walk in heels. Well, walk in heels and not look like a total idiot that's struggling to walk in heels. It's too bad because I've recently bought a couple pairs of really cute shows with heels but I rarely wear them because I hate wobbling around like a newborn fawn.

7. I decided to add an extra one for shits and giggles: my closet is color coded. Is that strange or do other people do this too? I got the idea the first time I went to Europe and all the cute boutiques were seperated into colors.

I tag anyone who wants to copy this...sorry, suddenly got distracted...must go organize shoes in planetary alignment...

Spring "Break"

It's spring break for my school and, as always, I'm totally wasting time that should be spent drunk and shirtless on a beach. I never did the spring break thing-even when I was a student-so I'm thinking next year I'm going to make up for lost time...

However, this year it's the same old, same old. I put the word break in qotes since I'm not even considering it a real vacation. Sure, I didn't have to teach this whole week but instead I just spent 10 hours grading exams and calculating mid-term grades and now my in-laws will be here in about 24 hours. Which means mad-dash cleaning, stocking up on pain-killers, and practicing smiling through sideways insults and complaining. Keep your fingers crossed that it won't end in a bizarre murder, murder, murder, suicide.

Ahhhh...good times.

Sunday, March 19, 2006

Happy Birthdy Christine!!!

It's one of my favorite blogger friends' birthday: Christine!!!

I hope you have a great day and someone makes you a Bonney Butter Cake and you give yourself a day off from your healthly lifestyle and that Isaac takes you to a fancy concert in New York and you go to a fun restaurant and eat lots of weird food that I would never eat and then tell me all about it...

Happy Birthday!!!

Saturday, March 04, 2006

Temporary Insanity

Well, it's finally happened...I've finally had my most serious bout with temporary insanity and signed up for a half marathon in Virginia Beach schedule for Labor Day weekend.

My good friend (and I'm beginning to think bad influence) talked me into it. I keep trying to tell myself that it's going to be fun and that it'll be worth the pain but those thoughts are often broken up by fits of panic about dehydration, overhydration, and not being able to finish in the maximum 4 hours. Yikes, I'd better. I don't want to be running/walking/crawling for 4 hours. But it sounds like we signed up for a good first 1/2 marathon. It's advertised as a flat course and they have rock bands set up every couple of miles so I'll get to hear music and won't get bored even when my friend leaves me in the dust when I collaspe at mile 5.

Okay, I might even be able to long as the race is devoid of the following things:

1. Dogs. I usually love dogs but I've always had trouble with dogs on my jogging routes (see this post)and this year has been no exception. I have recently lengthened my route to include a large black, wolf-looking doggie that looks like he could totally jump over the fence that encloses his yard. In fact whenever I run by he makes sure to lunge at me right when I'm least expecting it and then dangle his paws over the fence. I know he's thinking "you're lucky lady. I could get over this fence if I really wanted to but I already ate someone today. But next time you come around here you'd better hope you can make it home without a neck." And of course I still run past the demented poodles. Right now they're content with barking at me from their doilleyed couch but I know, one of these days, it won't be enough. Again, I repeat, these poodles look crafty and I'm pretty sure if they ever get ambitious enough to come outside the authorities won't ever find my body.

2. Rolled up newpapers. I trip over one at least once a week. I'm starting to think it's the same one that's stalking me and positioning itself right where it knows I'll step. There's one that is especially dangerous-it's been rained on, frozen, and baked in the sun for so long that it's hard as a brick and is now totally camoflagued into the grass. Luckily the last time I tripped on it I was on my 3rd mile so I wasn't going fast enough to actually fall and hurt myself but I'm's going to happen soon.

3. A Chipotle. 'Cause I can't friggin pass one of those places without stopping.

4. Hills. Hills are the devil. They defy space and time because it takes me twice the energy and time to get up one but it's actually half the distance. Sadly, I have about 5 hills the size of Everest on my route. The last one feels like it goes straight up.

5. Wind, heat, or severe cold. All three happened last week and I've decided I just can't take it. Tuesday it was such a warm afternoon and I couldn't tell that while in my apartment so I totally overdressed and had to strip while I ran. Then I just gave up and walked the rest of the way before I had heat stroke. Then Friday morning it was so cold that I couldn't feel ANYTHING except for the copius amounts of snot running out of my nose. I've resorted to carrying a handkerchief because the last time I carried mere Kleenexes they had been blown to bits the first half mile. And today, well today it was so windy I think people confused my attempt at excersice for a Marcel Marceau bit. Again, I had to give up early than usual because I wasn't actually running anywhere!

So as long as it's perfect weather and someone carries me I should be all set...

Night Watch ++++

Okay, my plus sign mean nothing because I really just put however many I think look good rather than relating to any kind of real rating system. Plus I just want to copy Stacy because she's a movie rating hero of mine.

I went to see this movie last weekend and even though it got horrible reviews from real movie conniseurs, I, of course, enjoyed it a lot. The story is a basic one about good vs. evil but the visuals were great, and again, it was about vampires and that kind of fantasy crap so I ate it up. It's also part of a trilogy so that is fun too since in the next movie it will be from the "evil" group's point of view. Oh, and it was Russian, so there were subtitles but I actually enjoy that sometime-especially since it's so much better than when they dub over it with English.

So if it comes to an artsy movie theater near you check it out.

Friday, February 24, 2006

Adventures in Awkwardness

Well good new everyone-my car is working fine (despite the engine manifold leak that has yet to be fixed) and after only two more freezing showers the hot water in our apartment was finally fixed (and it was really only bad until the second to the last since my rage kept me warm for the last one).

However, I realized that I forgot to relay one last story from my car trouble week: the story about hitching a ride with one of my kind co-workers/new friend. In retrospect I feel really bad for the guy because I was the most awkward, boring lump for the hour ride to work and the hour ride back. He was really very nice to put up with my monosyllabic answers to questions and awkward mumblings that I tried to chip in to the comversation.

It's times like these that make me really question my social skills-why do I air on the side of slug whenever I feel a tad nervous?! I honestly wish I was the type of person who rambles crazy fun stories when they are nervous because at least they're interesting, dynamic, and funny. I on the other hand get very quiet and avoid eye contact. And of course, I always think of funny things to say 5 minutes after the moment has passed and use up half my brain power that should be put towards social functioning and instead use it to mentally kick myself for not having a quicker wit.

Like when said co-worker was telling me interesting information about DC real estate and how my husband and I should look into buying rather than renting a funny thing to say might have been "Oh, I don't expect our marriage to last that long...". Sort of funny...right? At least better than "hmmmmm...yeah...........". Or when he inquired about the car troubled couldn't I have gone into one of my favorite childhood stories about the time that I skipped school to drive to the mall to buy a homecomming dress and ended up having to hitchhike my way home in a blizzard because my truck broke down. That's a pretty good story. Or when, while passing a lawn in rural Maryland that was filled with plastic lawn crap, we laughed about how you can tell a person from the lawn decorations, I should have said, "Yeah, I can't wait until I can have one of those Marys in a bathtub and so many cats littering the yard that walking up to my porch will be reminicent of the last scene of The Birds."
Wait....know that I read these things in print, they're really not that funny. Maybe it's actually a good thing that I kept my mouth shut. Ugh. I'm so bad at this!! I need social and/or electroshock therapy. Hey, I bet that would make a good story.

From Bad to Worse

Beware, this is a post of just complete bitching...

It's been a rouch couple of weeks in Lynnville. Especially with anything mechanical.
First, on the way home from work last week the check engine light came I take it into the shop and luckily it's just a computer problem that, even though still expensive, is easily fixed. However, while they're fixing that problem they find a crack in the lower intake manifold (wow, I kind of sound like I know what I'm talking about even though I don't) and it's going to cost about $1300 to fix. That's about half of what the car is actually worth.

Luckily, I talk to my dad and he says he can fix it no problem and just bring it back to Michigan when I get the chance. Problem solved, right? Or so I thought. On Tuesday I go grocery shopping (and of course stock up on frozen foods and a large chicken) and the stupid car won't start. So I'm stuck in the Giant parking lot with a trunk full of food. So I hoof it to the shop, again, and find out they have to tow the friggin car. The guy was nice enough to drive my to my car to get some of my groceris so I could metro them home...I remembered the frozen stuff but accidently left the chicken.

So here, I'm thinking, fine, I'll just have to pay the whopping amount to fix the manifold but atleast it will be done and I'll save both my dad and me the trouble having him fix it in Michigan...wrongo! It's something totally different, that costs an additional $500 plus towing costs plus the cost of the stupid chicken I left to stink up my trunk.

So now, I still have to take the car home to fix the manifold problem and pray that it doesn't break down on the 12 hour trip.

And to make matters even worse, we haven't had hot water in our apartment for two days. yup-cold showers for two friggin days. Today was esepcially bad. I went for a nice run to get myself all hot and sweaty so the shock of the cold water would actually be refreshing rather than murderous but it backfired. It was actually cold and windy today for my run so instead of the cold shower being a blessing it was horrible. Plus, the longer the water ran the colder it got-it was so bad that my finger nails were actually turning blue and it made me feel physically ill. Especially when the water hit my back. For some reason it was okay for all the other body parts but when my frozen hair hit the small of my back I swear I almost passed out.

Whew...that's it, enough bitching. Thanks for listning.

Brokeback Mountain +++++

I finally saw Brokeback Mountain and I have to say I enjoyed it. It was really sad though, which is usually not my kind of movie.

Now I really don't know what to vote for in my usual Oscar competition with my sister and her husband. Normally there's one movie that I totally love over all the rest but not this year. And now I cna't even fall back on voting for the cutest. Do I vote for the eye cnady of Heath Leger and Jake Gyllenhall? Or my new celebrity crush Eric Bana?

Yet Another Addiciton...

Oh which I forgot to mention in the last post-I've recently become addicted to the TLC show Miami Ink. And it reminds of the fact that I really want a tatoo but I'm such a wimp that I don't think I could ever go through with it. It's not that I'm worried about the pain, but more the fact that I'd probebly get sick of the thing but I'd be stuck with it the rest of my life.

Plus, getting a tatoo seems like a complicated process...first what to get? I don't think I'm bad ass enough to get anything with barb wire or a naked chic, which seems to be the typical choice. And I'm not girly enough to go with butterflies, flowers, or a chinese symbol for inner peace. Hmmmm...I could choose something that is associated with my hobbies or career but for some reason I think a portrait of Harry Potter or the Mona Lisa could get really old really quick.

And most importantly, where to get it? The lower back area seems to be popular but I'm not really pleased with the way my upper butt looks plus I don't wear low rise anything (and the world breaths a sigh of relief) so I wouldn't be able to show it off. There's the ankle, but that seems so early 90s. And the butt and boob are totally off limits-too tender. And the shoulder blade seems a bit manish...

Alas, I guess a tatoo is not in my future. How sad, because the thought of a huge dragon circling a heart with the name of my cat in the middle tattoed across my ass seems fun in theory.