Tuesday, March 31, 2009

Bad Dog

Oh, Russell...

Even after stealing all of the french toast off the counter before breakfast...

and Even after chewing up all of Cal's crayons...

and Even after taking the last loaf of banana bread...

and Even after knocking Elle to the ground with your love...

We still adore you!

It's the Peterson Curse

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Always Near

On Friday night, I went for a long run.

I am a morning runner,
but because of a busy weekend ahead, the evening seemed to be the only time I'd be able to get my run in for the week.

I don't consider the evenings quiet and peaceful. Mine usually include rushing from practices, scrambling through homework and dinner, and battling little ones who don't want to wind down. I've always sort of been grateful for my hectic nights. "Stay busy." If I just immerse myself in daily life, I just won't have time to think about it. I won't have time to miss her. I fill my life with appointments, obligations, and deadlines. It is denial in action. I know this and this is how I cope.

It is no coincidence that we call the difficult times in our lives the dark periods. Coming out of the darkness...we've heard it many times. There is just something in the evening, when our bodies and minds relax, and our thoughts become pensive and introspective. I think of it as the emotional part of the day. It's when that sadness that I shove deep down in my heart all day becomes more difficult to repress.

So, at eight o'clock, I find myself running near the orange groves. It is silent and so dark that I can no longer see the path in front of me. My thoughts immediately turn to my mom and even the overwhelming aroma of orange blossoms can't distract my mind. I miss her... I want to talk to her... If we just had another... Wouldn't she have loved...the thoughts run through my head like news scrolls across a television screen. And, then the tears come. Running and crying. No noise, just a steady stream rolling down my face. When my mom died, I didn't lose her all at once. I lost her in pieces over time. It is the blessing and curse of disease. Once she was gone, her presence slowly began to disappear. I saw less of her friends. Her scent gradually faded from her house. The kids stopped saying her name. And, suddenly... all of her... gone. Every now and then, it happens and the realization that she is gone forever is overwhelming.

I had one of those moments on the pavement along the orange groves. I pulled myself together, wiped the tears, and ran home.

The next night, I received an email message and slide show from my Aunt Wendy. She included a note, "Hope this doesn't make you sad." It came just when I needed it and it didn't make me sad...made me smile.

The final slide read,

Your mother is always with you...she's the whisper of the leaves as you walk down the street; she's the smell of bleach in your freshly laundered socks; she's the cool hand on your brow when you're not well. Your mother lives inside your laughter...And she's crystallized in every tear drop. She's the place you came from, your first home; and she's the map you follow with every step you take. She's your first love and your first heartbreak, and nothing on earth can separate you.

Not time, not space...not even death.

Friday, March 27, 2009

Another Trip to the Dentist

This poor little boy.

Another extraction at Dr. Miner's office today.

I can't imagine this can go on much longer.

He only has a few good teeth left.

(Have I mentioned that Cal has been unable to chew meat since his last big dental appointment?)

Tuesday, March 24, 2009

A Princess She Will Be...

Elle enjoyed her first pedicure and manicure yesterday.

We walked in the salon and the sweet lady at the desk quietly asked Elle if she wanted her nails done.

Elle, in her raspy little voice responded, "I WANT PINK!" ...and pink she got.

She asked if we could go back today.

Apparently, Elle could get used to this!

Sunday, March 22, 2009

1 Down

This little guy lost his first tooth and got a whopping $5 from the ToothFairy.

We'd be so much better off if he'd lose the rest. He's got a mouth full of sterling silver and I'm sure she pays top dollar for those puppies, even in this economy!

Keep 'em coming, Cal!

Monday, March 16, 2009

I love it...

You know it's gonna be a long run when you have to write down the route so you don't forget where you are going!

On Saturday, I went out for a 14-mile run, one of many long runs ahead of me on this road to the marathon.

There's alot of preparation to go out on a long run. See, I am a "stasher." I hate running with anything on me... no watch, jewelry, and certainly no water/gel pack. So, before my run, I drive to a few locations and "stash" my water and gel. Then, I wrap my bad knee (I'm sure a result of getting older), charge my ipod (it died at mile 2 of a 12-miler I ran recently...not fun!), and fuel, stretch, and hydrate.

Then, I'm off.

At about mile 6, I head north on Val Vista and find myself running in sand for a 1/2 mile. I am immediately taken back to my high school track days. Once a week, our coaches would take us out to Usery to run sprints through the sand. This felt totally unnecessary. If you were on track and competed in a field event, you know what I'm talking about. Running sucked! I can still hear Coach Robinson shouting behind me, "Faster Peterson!" Exhausted, I would respond, "I'm NOT a runner. I'm a high-jumper!" Oh, how I dreaded those Usery days.

17 years later, running through the sand, I am wondering, "Why am I choosing to do this?"

That's an easy one.

Because I love it.

And, Coach Robinson, thank you...
Bet you never would have guessed it, but

Today, I AM a runner.

Saturday, March 14, 2009

Celebrating 60

Last night,
We took my dad out for his 60th birthday!

Carolinas for some burritos and then onto the good stuff...

F1 raceway for some serious speed and sweet fashions!

I pulled off the jumpsuit alot better than I pulled off the whole racing thing!

Thursday, March 12, 2009


Happy Birthday, Dad!

We Love You!

Monday, March 9, 2009

Happy Birthday, Lance!

Happy Birthday...

to one of the kindest,
most selfless,
dedicated and passionate

people I have ever known.

Thanks for da goosebumps.

Saturday, March 7, 2009

Derby Day!

Max's (and my) first Pinewood Derby experience came and went this morning,
and I am breathing a sigh of relief.

I have spent the last week studying up, sanding, painting, drilling, weighing, and becoming completely obsessed with all things Pinewood Derby!

After a DISAPPOINTING first race, I got nervous and Max shot me a "What did you do to my car?" look from across the room. This was going to get embarrassing.

I knew something had to be done.

At the table where all of the participating cars sat, a gathering of dads were graphiting wheels as fast as they could. I knew if we had a shot, I had to get in on this.

So, I joined the derby dads and began adding as much graphite as possible to those little wheels I had spent so much time sanding and prepping! (Filthy job, I must say!)

Next race...much less humiliating. We shaved almost a whole second off our time. Max's mood lightened and I knew I was out of the woods. The rest of the races we came in first or second.

Not bad for these first-timers, huh?

We'll get 'em next year!

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Spring is Here!

Spring is here.

Tree climbing,

Flip flops (can I hear an "amen"),



and Cadbury Creme Egg eating...

Ahh, I couldn't be happier.

Sunday, March 1, 2009

Party at Fiddlesticks

On Friday night, Max invited some of his closest buddies to Fiddlesticks for a little "boys only" shindig. Miniature golf, video games, bumper boats, and go-carts...everything a bunch of eight-year-olds would love! Happy Birthday, Max!