favorite things

Bowls of fruit. Lemons, persimmons, oranges, you name it. They are so lovely to me.

Douglas adams. I've listened to this book zillions of times and it never gets old. I need to get the rest of them. My heart runs deep with nerdiness.

This is on my fridge. Joey and I realized one day that he is Charlie Brown and I am Linus. On almost every level. It is good that we have each other.

Hope you're week is full of much more sleep than mine has been. Three cheers to re-establishing homeostasis!


carlsbad was conquered

Last weekend Joey, Kit, and Mark culminated 5 months of training and ran 26.2 miles in Carlsbad, CA. The four of us made a wonderful long weekend of it, spending hours listening to Jim Gaffigan, rocking out to Mariah Carey, and dissecting the nuances of middle school relationships and Jesus. We're fun like that.

We stayed with Kit's aunt, uncle, and cousin; truly some of the most wonderful people I've met. They are creative and articulate and open and warm and generous and so much of what I want to be. They are magnetic. I could have spent so many more days absorbing them.

Families came to cheer them on, and I had the greatest time waiting with Susan and Jimmie. There's something about a marathon that's so very inspirational. I mean, I know that's a ridiculously obvious statement to make; but when you see the thousands of people wincing their way past to finish the last .2 miles, and you're encouraging them on, you can't help but think of how much depth of meaning this experience has for them, and how odd and humbling it is to be a miscellaneous part of it.

The race was good, but discouraging on many levels for the runners. From changed routes to poor fuel, it just wasn't as supportive or friendly as San Francisco. Mark finished in the same time (4.12 I think) and Kit and Joey stuck it out together and finished at 4.55. Once Mark finished he ran back up the race and met the other two, so that they could all run in together, which was wonderful and tear-jerky for the rest of us. But we were so proud.

They're so awesome. And sore.

For the rest of the pictures from the race, go here. I'm not planning on 26.2 anytime soon, but the 13 in San Jose might not be too bad...


oh for indiana

this is one of my favorite things from this summer. i was singing it tonight. wanted to share. miss you mo and nate.


I know it's been a while since I've posted. Traveling to San Diego for the marathon was so much more exhausting than I thought it would be, even though I did absolutely nothing; it seems the medication is affecting me quite strongly. But it's all good. I'll be posting loads of pictures from the race and all sorts of other recent and fabulous things soon. I just wanted to let you all know that you haven't been forgotten. The blogging seems to really have stuck with me this time...

Anyway, I just developed my first roll of Holga pictures. They weren't quite as exciting as I may have hoped, but I greatly enjoyed a few. The one above is my most favorite. It's a dear, cozy spot on our porch that just calls out for a sit with a book and a cup of tea. It looks a bit lonesome in the shot above, but it seems like the whole roll is a bit that way. Anyway, there will be a legitimate update soon, my friends.




While touring a brewery with my dear family over Christmas break, I found myself leaning against a wall, distracted by the "Hazardous Condition Complaint Board." The two pics in this post are my favorites from that day. I can just imagine these wonderful, burly, testosterone-y men carefully scrawling out their warning and suggestions for the safety of the team. For reasons unknown, it cracks me up every time.

Needless to say, I am mildly addicted to the miscellaneous world of other people's secret lives. I think many of us are. As individuals I believe that we are incredibly more poingnant, humorous, and horrifying than we will ever give ourselves or one another enough credit for. Unless we are having a "crack open the ol' junior high journal" party (which I think would be fabulous when coupled with a variety of pop+rum concoctions), we don't usually get a chance to peek in at the everyday secrets and struggles of each others' lives.

Which is why I adore the internet for the two following things: found magazine and post secret. Found Magazine is an actual magazine (I received the latest one from Trinity for Christmas!) that is published... when they get around to it... People send in random notes, lists, pictures, etc. that they find about, and they get posted on the website each day. Fabulous. Post Secret is "an ongoing community art project where people mail in their secrets anonymously on one side of a homemade postcard." It's incredible to see the outpouring of pain and hope and hilarity that people of all ages create and share. Please keep in mind that neither of these sites are censored, and occasionally feature pieces that are explicit and inappropriate for children.

There is something so sweet and sincere and beautiful to me about what is often seen as the mundane details of our days. These art pieces are pictures of honesty and vulnerability brought forth from our very lives. It endears me to them. Plus, it's good to know that somedays I'm not the only one who feels like this:


the end to a very fuzzy week

Apparently not eating and sedatives have a rather strong effect on me. The middle of the week has faded into a fuzzy haze, so I'm trying to get my life back to it's regularly scheduled programming.

We finally went grocery shopping last night, which is one of my most favorite cheap dates evah. We had been living off of Top Ramen and leftover Christmas Tamales for far too long. Joey's been having basketball finals all week as well, so we've done a lot of catching up on our netflix and avoiding post-travel laundry as I come back down to earth.

I'm finally able to post about one of the projects I was working on for Christmas this year. I learned how to embroider when I was younger, and I loved it. However, it's been YEARS since I've even thought about it. Wanting to have something handmade with a few of my gifts this year, I decided to see if I could remember any of the old stitches. It was so fun to free hand a few of these dishtowels and I was pretty happy with how they turned out. Here's one:

I want to do quite a bit more, and I found this great blog that has some easy-to-follow tutorials for different stitches. Too bad I found it after I'd already finished the bulk of the work. I'm excited to reference it as I start more projects, though.

Some of my favorite things from this week:

We have a bajillion downed branches and limbs (25+ feet long!) from the storm all about the yard. I've been making piles while I talk on the phone for days now.

The post-storm light is beautiful.

Joey brought me a miniature calla lily plant since I made it through the "procedure" okay. It is lovely and lives next to my ancient typewriter in the kitchen.

That's all for tonight friends! Hope your weekend is spectacular!


colonscopy, schmolonoscopy!

I had my first of many colonoscopies today. Yes, that is a many. You may be surprised to learn, especially after my last post, that I am so very okay with this. A few reasons why:

1. I have the most fabulous doctor who not only let me watch on a very awesome flat screen TV, but answered my random questions DURING the procedure. Even though I don't remember what I asked because I was a bit drugged.

2. They already know what's wrong with me. Ulcerative Colitis. The Proctosigmoiditis kind.

3. They gave me a ton of great info on it and my treatment.

4. The treatment is for the rest of my life as it is a genetic, non-curable, chronic condition. It includes meds on and off and regular (every 3-5 years) colonoscopies for monitoring.

5. Bad stuff: Hugely increased risk of colon cancer. Escalation of disease. Fertility issues. Etc.

6. Good stuff: Very treatable. Very manageable. Caught now. Before it got really bad. Fabulous doctor.

Prep was icky. I had to take these pills that made me throw up more violently than I ever had before. Awful. And the liquid really really really cleans you out. No question. Blech. I was pretty loopy all day from the no-food, but other than that I spent my day chilling on the couch and dashing to the bathroom every 15 minutes. No exaggeration.

The hospital was so nice, as were the nurses (I got the "you're HOW old?! and married HOW long?!" bug-eyed looks a few times). I freaked Joey out by reminding him to pull the plug if something went horribly wrong. He hates it when I do that.

Drugs were great. I was awake the entire time and babbled about math patterns during observation. I don't know why. Ah, well. What can you do about being a nerd? I think I'm just as bad on drugs as I am without food, seeing that I could barely hold a simple conversation at a birthday party last night. My brain had literally hurled itself off of a cliff. Poor Gator.

I ended my fast with ramen and a chocolate. so comforting and delicious. mmmmmm.

Sooooooooooo... thank you all who listened to me freak out and prayed and were so encouraging. I have the greatest friends-family-community. I'm going to bed because my brain is still a little drugged and having a horrendous time spelling.




an afternoon colonsocopy for two

Actually, it's just for one. Me. Not 50 years old me. Now me; just nearly 25 me. Due to some... ahem... issues I've been having for, oh, 5 years now, I get to have my first Colonoscopy today. Contrary to popular belief I DID talk to a nurse a few years ago about it and she said, "No big deal, it's probably just stress/change in diet/etc." But now that Joey and I have fabulous insurance my new doctor said, "Yeah. That's not normal. I'm sending you in." Bah for a commitment to full disclosure. Sort of.

The lemon-lime flavor does not make it better. Just a heads up to the ol' Halflytely folks.

It sounds like an afternoon tea. Or ladies luncheon. If only I were so lucky.

Welcome to the new world of Gastroenternology. Hopefully I won't have to dwell here too long.


i heart my allen clan

I adore my in-laws so very much. They are warm and generous and kind and love their boys+wives so very much. We rarely get to be all together, so our early Christmas was lovely and exhausting this year. I drove down to the desert and back within a 48 hour period. Ca-razy! But so worth it. I was able to spend oodles of time with my very wonderful nephew-number-one, Layton. He is sweet and adorable and snuggley and my brother and sister in-law are excellent parents. I took manymanymany pictures, hoping to get some great ones to send the new little family. Unfortunately one of the most frustrating tragedies happended as I downloaded them. My computer decided to EAT around 250 pictures. 250 PICTURES!! Bah. The really irritating thing is that they're partway there... I can see them as I scroll, but as soon as I stop they disappear. Tragic. Here are some of my rescued ones though. Enjoy!


happy new

We are home.  For the first time this year.  It was kind of cool as we were flying into San Jose to think about how we haven't been in California yet this year.  It gave the arrival a much more weighted feel, set it apart from the eight hundred other trips we took this year, and brought forth some much needed, albeit cheesey, introspection.    

We returned to what is being referenced as "the worst storm since 1982" in our area.  A little bit bah and a big bit exciting.  As we listened to voicemails post-debarkation and waded through parking lot rivers to get to our car, we were encouraged to hear friends letting us know we had no power but that many beds were available to us.  Far too tired to be sociable, we decided to head home with the help of our Christmas Garmin, and pray that all the roads would be open, which they were.  We ended up having a lovely, quietly adventurous evening of candle-hunting, jet-boiled ramen, and Indiana Jones in front of the fire.  How I love laptops and Christmas chocolate.

Obviously the power is back, which is fabulous.  We took advantage of this great development and watched "The Simpson's Movie"  (funnier than I thought it would be), and made a yummy stone soup with the favorite Kit for lunch.  I'm off to shower for church.  Hope you're able to enjoy the last night of vacation!

p.s.  I'm having picture-uploading issues right now, so there'll be more later.  

Hope to you all!