Tuesday, October 28, 2008

a reason, a season, or a lifetime

first off.  not sure if i like the new way the blog title is set up with the photo... what do you think? 

so, i got this off of a prodigal's musings. great quote from CS Lewis.

“To love at all is to be vulnerable. Love anything, and your heart will certainly be wrung and possibly be broken. If you want to make sure of keeping it intact, you must give your heart to no one, not even to an animal. Wrap it carefully round with hobbies and little luxuries; avoid all entanglements; lock it up safe in the casket or coffin of your selfishness. But in that casket—safe, dark, motionless, airless—it will change. It will not be broken; it will become unbreakable, impenetrable, irredeemable. The alternative to tragedy, or at least to the risk of tragedy, is damnation. The only place outside Heaven where you can be perfectly safe from all the dangers and perturbations of love is Hell.”

i have thought that it was quite applicable to everyone's life.  and, it hit my life, today.  love that quote.  anyway, one of my co-workers recently gave me the "rhyme" which is the title of this post.  and, it is in regard to people.  she believes that people come into your life for "a reason, a season, or a lifetime."  and, to me, that is a good word.  i recently have had to evaluate that in my life, and i believe that it is a reason, in some cases.  maybe a season, but we shall see.  and, i am glad for those reasons, cause i have experienced so much. there is nothing, nothing at all, that was wrong, or that i regret about the past 3 months.  in fact, i raise a glass of wine to it, and am extremely thankful for it.  i just need to continue to figure out what i have learnt with it.  

as well, i wanted to post a few of photos from the fall. these are taken when a good friend from college, Katelyn Jones, came to squamish to climb, in mid-september. I took them up my favourite local torture hike, the grouse grind. Thanks KJ, for the photos of the day! come and visit anytime.  I will hold your down hostage until then... ;) 

love this photo.  the timberwolf at the refuge at the bottom of the mountain...

Yay!  Done and done!!! 

Stoked to be done, and on the 5$ tram ride down the mountain.

At the top of the grind.  Did it in about an hour.  pretty good time for first timers... 

these little chipmunks are gutsy!!!!  
This was post-hike.  making blackberry margaritas.  they failed miserably, as you might be able to tell...

Tuesday, October 21, 2008

UBC apple festival

so, this past sunday was fantastic. i love the fall. and, what a perfect thing to do, other than spend time with friends, and do fall activities like "Apple festivals"? these are some photos from the event, which i went to with my friend and co-worker, Joanna. She is 6 months preggers, and her baby is due at the beginning of Feb, right on her own birthday! Hot mama! yay!

however, by the time i got there, the 10 million pounds of apples were all sold out, but i was able to do such things like:

pose by nice fall scenes with water and trees, and 
of course, apples!

jumping into random john deere like tractors: 

competing in apple peeling contests: 
overall, joanna's was longer than mine, by about 1 cm or so...
and eating things with apples in them.  like pies.  and hot apple ciders.
and taking pictures of the leaves, and the water droplets.

TERRIFIC!  (thank you joanna for the photos!)


So, this video is pretty neat.  I watched it on Simon Whitfield's blog.  i love reading other athlete's blogs.  cause, it is soooo inspirational.  it is neat to read about people doing the things that they love to do.  but, winning the ironman world championships?!!?  now that is a great feat.  and, i love how he sounds so non-chalant about it.  

for the last couple days, i have had a hard time getting out of bed, and to make myself have a productive day. all i want to do is lay under the covers all day long.   something is just wearing a little thin on me these days.  my motivation. inspiration. drive. is at quite a low right now.  

i want to run this 1/2 marathon.  not for any reason, but to give myself a sense of accomplishment this fall.  running is so hard for me.  out of the three bits of a tri, it is the one i enjoy the least.  i just think that when you have to carry 174 lbs of weight by yourself, it is hard.  and, for some reason, i find it more boring than the others.  i read recently about how easy it is to run 20 minutes a day.  and, that seems reasonable.  so, maybe that will be my goal for next week.  run at least 20 minutes a day, and get the long run(s) in.  just to give my legs the feeling.  just to get my mind through this slump.  

last night, after a wine and cheese party with some of my friends, i missed my bus by 3 minutes.  and, at the time i was going home, the bus runs every 1/2 an hour.  i sat there, in the cold for a while.  

so, i dug into my bag, and i pulled out my journal, and started writing.  

and, you know when you just write.  whatever is on your mind.  and, i wrote about connection.  and, i asked what is it that i want from connection, and what i am scared about with connection.  and, sometimes i wish i were a better writer.  a writer to whom people could find inspiration, and connection.  but, meanwhile, writing is such a great outlet.  especially when you allow yourself to be completely honest in your writing. 

 the thing about connection, is that i truely believe that you can have a connection with someone who lasts a short time, and is unexplainable, and amazing.  and, then, you move forward from there, celebrating the connection, but continuing forward with a slightly changed outlook, but pretty much the same way that you were previous.  trail angels.  but, i wonder what happens when you want that connection to last longer, and you have no idea if it will, and you don't know what to do, or how to act and react? 

what happens then? how the heck do we go forward, not knowing what to do next?

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

2.5 months till the end of the year...

it shocked me today, that it is Oct 15th.  what does that mean?  i will tell you what it means.  in two short months, it will pretty much be christmas.  and, in a blink of an eye after that, it will be new years.  and, so, while recently reading an old journal entry of mine, i realized that it is time to re-look at my new years resolutions from this past january, to have a check, to see if i have accomplished them.  

so, it was on this post that i told you about my desires for the new year, and the amazing christmas break i had.  let us evaluate. 

Get back to personal journalling again. to find the extraordinary in the mundane.
  • not so bad.  not great, either though.  as of late, I have had more of a ambition to journal privately.  especially since i have had so many personal changes going on in my life.  so, this is not a fail.  but, not a total pass, either.  
Get a better grip on my finances; pay off my bicycle, and my credit card.
  • check.  done and done.  WOOT!
Travel to the eastern states. Maybe hitchhike.
  • not done.  subsituted with a trip to washington state with the rowing girls.  a trip to the eastern states though, may happen in december.
run another half marathon, and do an olympic distance tri.
  • four 10km races, and 3 olympic tris.  i would say this is almost more than that goal.  1/2 marathon? perhaps.  ask me again in 3 weeks.
Talk to makayla at least every 3 weeks.
  • big failure here.  but, i did bring her to see me in june. 
graduate from my masters. Take the MCATS, apply for medical school
  • graduation: on track to finish in Dec/Jan.  MCATS: done.  application for medicine: well. nope.  but, i am okay with that. 
Organize the youthgroup at St Johns
  • put a good effort into it.  sticking with it, and meeting with the new family minister at church tomorrow to brainstorm more ideas.
do yoga, and african drumming again.
  • check and check.  want to be more consistent with both of these though. 
Love & be open to love.
  • working on this one.  but, love is in a constant flux, right?  hard to figure this one out.  and, it makes me wonder if i will ever figure it out.  probably not.  

... i don't normally blog about politics.

but, it was election day yesterday.  I got up bright and early to go to the polling station down the block, right when it opened, at 7am.  'x'd my little circle, and proceeded on my way.  then, waited.  

and, since i am not super savvy on politics, and i do not choose to create conflict via a blog, i will stick to a few minor points that made me interested in an election that there was not anything to be excited about.  and, also, i would like to highlight the note that I am a 25 year old, attempting to live as greenly as possible, student, who is passionate about underpriviledged populations.  so, it is not all that hard to determine where my political spectrum lies, and how my vote is cast.  
  • First, why the heck did stephen harper even call an election? i think it was early.  and, the fact that we still have a minority conservative government proves to me that not much has changed over the last 2.5 years.  
  • having been away from Canada during the last 2 federal elections, I felt priviledged to go and cast my vote.  sure, i "understand" if "you haven't paid attention" or "our vote doesn't make a difference anyways, politicans are all liers." or whatnot. wait a minute.  no, i don't understand.   there is absolutely no excuse for (the lowest turn out ever) only 58% of the canadian population going out to vote....  it might be the lack of voter turn out was due to a few things.  leadership of the parties.  maybe they are not the strongest possible leaders.  the electoral system. timing of the vote. lame youth skipping out on the vote.  
all i know is that i have traveled to countries where people fight for the right to vote in a democratic, safe environment.  people die for the right to vote. and, yes, we have a lot of problems with the democracy in this country, but, it is still one of the best in the world. we have one of the best countries in the world.  so, voter apathy should not be one of the problems of democracy in our country.  if you "didn't know what party to vote for" find a website like: voteforenvironment.ca  it will *tell you* how to vote, if voting strategically is what you want to do.  

  • i am happy to currently live in a riding, Vancouver Kingsway, where my vote made a difference.  my riding is one that has been liberal, since 1997.  However, in the last election, when David Emerson ran as a liberal, our riding got a conservative.  2 weeks after being elected, he crossed the floor to the conservative party.  since then a "de-elect David Emerson" campaign has been running.  so, the liberals had a hard fight.  turns out that they didn't fight hard enough around here.  NDP painted the community orange, with a 35% win, over the 29% liberal vote, and 27% Torie vote.  finally, i live in a NDP riding.  
  • I would also like to make note that Edmonton-Strathcona (where i grew up) is also NDP for the first time in ages.  It has been conservative for years.  but, i wonder in the university students actually got out to make a difference.  that makes me happy.  that community needs an NDP. 

anyway, that is probably about it for now.  now, we turn to the south, and anticipate the result in the obama-mccain situation.  it could get nasty in the next few weeks, and i will be glad when it is over.  i am curious to see the voter turnout for the US.  hopefully it will be better than the canadian turnout.  

in a final note.  i am on the "leaning up" frame of mind again.  i have successfully dropped about 5-7lbs since the end of the summer.  however, it is easy to get fat over the winter.  I am hoping to be lean and fit and hot for christmas, to lead me into the spring season.  however, i don't know how to do it.  i know it seems strange for a "fitness professional" to say that. but, as a student who eats out of her house at least 2x per day, i need a strategy.  cause, there is only a limited amount of room in my backpack.  a friend of mine is doing a raw diet.  maybe a possibility?  but, that can get soooo boring.  

strategies, anyone?!  advice? tell me a "easy" way to cut calories, but still be alert enough, with enough energy, to do school work, and work work, and workouts. 

also, i do think i am going to do that 1/2 marathon on Nov 16th.  but, don't tell anyone, cause i don't want anyone to have any expectations.  i am not going for time, i am just going for distance.  

Sunday, October 12, 2008

happy thanksgiving!

i love love love thanksgiving.  and, it is tomorrow.  I celebrated last night, with friends of mine, both known and [previously] unknown, by a potluck thanksgiving dinner.  it was amazing, and so much fun.  good food, good laughs, good wine, good dessert, good people.  

and, tomorrow, I will run the Turkey trot  Gotta love throwing in a 10km race on thanksgiving morning, just for the fun of it.  and, at least there will be a man dressed up in a turkey costume.  in fact, that might be the highlight of the day.  the 13 degree, rainy forecast will definitely not be the highlight.   but, nevertheless, I am excited :) 10k's are so much fun!

so, race was great.  it was pretty funny, it reminded me of swimming in a triathlon, where aroud the corners, it get so tight, and on the straights, you try to find a line, or someone to stick behind in order not to get trampled down...  Try putting about 1700 people on a 20ft wide path, around winding corners, with small pilons in the way, and telling them to run as fast as they can.  then, throw a dog into the mix, who is trying to navigate his way with a stick, to the water. then, mix in the rain and a bit of wind, and the clouds and coldness.  it all amounts to a great start to thanksgiving day! i just about died laughing at one point about how hilarious this whole thing was.  i mean really.  don't we have better things to do with our lives?  and, can someone explain to me why i just can't get enough of racing!?

  :D  love it!

    final chip time, 52 minutes.  not so shabby for having run only about 3 times in the last 4 weeks.  the whole thing felt good, and then the 4 hours warming up in a coffee shop, and reading my book was a great way to spend a good part of the day.  

now, i am going to get all cozy again, in my bed, and finish off my book.  

Wednesday, October 8, 2008

new seasons

this is in West Virginia. the place that was created for autumn. Not my picture though.

Someone once told me that God created seasons to remind us of life. and, to remind us that in order for new life to occur, death must happen. and, as awful as that sounds, it rang true to me today.

I rode my bike through the roads of Vancouver, and noticed how much the season is changing. the air is cold. the trees are yellow and red and purple. it is raining more often. and, it is dark early. and, often, people get sad when the fall comes, because it means that the grey winter is on its way. but, i thought about the leaves, and how they have to die, in order for the new life to happen in the spring. those days when the trees turn pink with cherry blossoms, and then green. and, i gotta admit. i like the fall. i like how it is so crisp, and fresh. but, a different fresh than spring.

i think that my life is finally feeling.... well. i am not 100% sure of how to explain it. maybe finally i am starting to feel happy again. feeling like i am enjoying life. realizing that for now, death has occurred, but new life will soon arrive. a season of change. and, i am kinda excited about it. admittedly, it is hard to leave a dream behind. because change can be scary. but, there are so many things to look forward to. so many things to be in anticipation of. and, i like that. i like that a lot. and, it feels good to have PAX. finally.

edit: today, while at work, i had an interesting conversation, and also received an interesting email, from a friend of mine.

the conversation was about some fears (for lack of a better word) that i have about trying to figure out how to [re]act in the present, because of how it might impact the future. i think i tend to react to situations, with somewhat of a natural instinct, based on situations of the past. however, to me, one of the most freeing points of life will be when you acknowledge how the things of your past influence your actions and thoughts today, but they do not define who you are. in many ways, you have the power to change your situation. and, we talked about if i am a "past-dweller" or a "future-dweller." and, i think, that i am a little of both. i used to be more of a past-dweller. so, today, i was reminded of not letting things of the past define me, and to just go with it. try to resist the desire to ask questions, and know answers, or how everything will turn out.
but, sometimes that is hard. cause, i want to know. but, i suppose that is all in the excitement of figuring it out. and trying not to be scared if something doesnt work out the way you might hope it will.
and, this email. well, this is some of what it said: "The other night I asked God to speak to me in my dreams. What did I dream about? You. You were getting ready to run another race but you were exhausted and I told you that it's okay to take a break and that you couldn't save the world by running seven miles in the pouring rain. I don't know what that means. Probably nothing at all. It was just you and the fact that you run incorporated into my subconscious and probably wasn't God at all." and, you know. i think it was God. now we both just need to figure out what it means. what it means to take a break.

i think i might run a 1/2 marathon on November 16th. just for fun. and, also to achieve a new years resolution that i made for this year. i will decide after the turkey trot on monday. but, it would be a lot of running, in a short time. i would do a 4 week build up, increasing my long runs by 3km each week, finishing with a 19km on the 2nd of November, and a 15km on the 9th. then, a week long taper down to the race, and 21km on the 16th (race day). so, we will see. might actually be do-able...

Tuesday, October 7, 2008

my Mama bear

so, this past week, my mum has been in town. The last time she came to Vancouver, it was on a trip with Makayla, out for thanksgiving, 2 years ago. Needless to say, lots has changed for me in this town since then. The occasion for this trip, was that her youngest (living) sister was getting married, out in nanaimo. So, she stayed on Thursday, Friday, and Monday nights.

Time was passed with swimming, home cooked meals, meals eaten out, sushi, and movies. It was a great time to catch up, seeing that I have not seen her for about a year. Here are a few photos that she took with her camera.

My Mum, Uncle Don, Auntie Kathleen, Auntie Maureen.
i am always shocked at how similiar they all look to eachother.

My Mum, Uncle Don, and Myself, at "The flying Beaver" for Lunch.
i would like to mention, that Don has done 7 triathlons (sprint distance) this year.  to me, that is just shocking.  he also told me how he has a friend who just completed his 100th Ironman. This has been since 1988. Ridiculous.

My Mum and I outside the UBC pool, where we had a shockingly beautiful fall day today.  
I am mourning that the outdoor pool will be closed as of next friday.

Self Portrait!

Wednesday, October 1, 2008

conflict of interest....

So, tomorrow night, there are 3 things that are occuring, simultaneously, that will have my attention drawn towards...

1) Canadian Party Leader debate 9pm, EST
2) Vice presidential debate, 8pm CDT
3) Grey's anatomy, episode2.  9pm PST.

#1 is entertaining because it deals with my future.  #2 is entertaining because it will be about foreign policy, and that might be laughable.  i am curious about how Palin will perform.  #3 is entertaining, because it is entertaining.  and, patrick dempsey is a hot man. ;)

today's outward bound quote of the day.  Not 100% sure that i agree with the first part, because we need to learn to believe in ourselves outside of other people's valuing us, but i still kinda like it.  especially the second bit...

"We do not believe in ourselves until someone reveals that deep inside us is something valuable, worth listening to, worthy of our trust, sacred to our touch. Once we believe in ourselves we can risk curiosity, wonder, spontaneous delight or any experience that reveals the human spirit. "
- E. E. Cummings