And the Numbers are In!

2020 total miles: 318.25. 2019 was about 140 miles higher, but since I only ran one half marathon the entire year I’d say it was a success. Granted that one half marathon was 14 miles long – must have been the wet and wild adventure we took off course.

Nothing like a new pair of running shoes to put you in a good mood! I recommend it for everyone. My toes are splayed out like they should be, ankles are inline, and quad load is below normal. Sounds super sexy, right? My little lady calls new shoes ‘go fasters’; I couldn’t agree more. They make you want to sprint!

Run the Rail, New Boston, Texas, Oct 9, 2021. Race numero dos on my list of three. This one is near my parentals so maybe they can support my need for homemade cooking. I should ensure they read this. One more race added to the list then I’ll have a full plate. Of course nothing is official until I all-caps-it and post it here. Sometimes it still doesn’t happen even then. Whoopsies!

Relatedly unrelated, I have a confession. A short time ago, I was feeling dissatisfied in my work life. A position in a prior career field was open and I was seriously considering making a big move. After crunching some numbers, praying, asking for advice from others, etc. it became apparent this wasn’t the best option for me. Hello, Kel, you only spent 4 years trying to get to where you’re at now. The silence of what I had asked for was more telling than any answer I could have received.

Suddenly a different opportunity appeared. To be the storyteller I am at heart. Even before I could complete that mission, more people reached out for help with their own personal goals. It took a minute, but I soon realized I wasn’t feeling dissatisfaction with my job. I was feeling as if something was missing from my purpose in life. I asked, He obliged.

Funny how purpose shows up in the most unexpected ways.

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I ask you –

Do you get excited about new shoes? What’s your favorite pair?

Do you go through periods of feeling unsatisfied with your work?

Tell me your advice when going through a low period in life.

Mary, You May Call Me Martha!

The 5am wakeups have been… something. At first it’s exciting, then by day 3, it’s a ‘oh lookie, 5am again’. I love the mornings, but pre-sunrise takes some getting used to when you haven’t done it in awhile. Practice makes perfect, right?

Streaking is going well, too. Much to the benefit of my neighbors, I have been dressing appropriately for each run. The only person to complain was that one guy. The weather has been quite cooperative with my goals!

wayyyyy too much going on here

While helping a friend with a job search, I came across a listing for a “Laundry Manager” at a nearby maximum security prison. Cue the hysterical laughing. Truly funny to me was the fact I made jokes about my own title; motherhood is full of little quirks. Needless to say, I don’t think my friend was interested. Entertained, yes; interested, no. I understand.

Do you know how hard it is to submit for a copyright? Perhaps hard isn’t the correct word; try tedious, overwhelming, nerve-wracking. Don’t mess it up because you pay a lot of money for it! Hopefully it will be worth it. Just another step toward a dream. What’s the worst that could happen? Resubmit? Ok, so that really would be the worst.

For more than a week, the phrase “Who Am I?” circled around me. First, I noticed it during the course of a conversation. Then, it was spoken in a song. Finally, I read it in print. Unsure of its context – question or statement – there is much meaning to some very sincere questions I have had lately. Maybe this happens to you, my dear reader, at points in your own life when you’re unsure of the correct path. Or maybe it doesn’t and I’m just weird.

It’s nothing short of miraculous hearing about a chance encounter between two people that turns into the opportunity of a lifetime. No spoilers. The Courage to Run is a profound and inspiring documentary about the late Gabe Grunewald and Chip Gaines. You may have no desire to ever run 500 feet much less a marathon, but watch the show anyway. Bring Kleenex.

As I’m currently lacking in fun catchphrases to round out this messy post, hope you all have a wonderful day!

P.S. It took nearly 6 1/2 hrs for my computer to update and restart yesterday. If ever there was a license to be able to own electronic devices, mine would surely be revoked.

________________

I ask you –

What time do you typically wake up?

Copyright, or of the like, advice? Patience, perhaps?

Name something you’ve watched lately which really inspired you! And then restart your computer. Don’t be like me.

Say ‘I’m Sorry’, Now Say It Again

What if we lived our life knowing there’s not a single word we say that doesn’t matter. Note the lack of a question mark; this is most assuredly statement material. Profound! And if you knew this, would it influence the words to exit your lips? I dislike conversations where “it doesn’t matter” is used flippantly, in a disregard type of manner. To me, it’s basically saying I don’t care what you think or say. At the least, it’s extremely hurtful. At most, damaging.

Lifting people up should be a common goal; however, it seems this isn’t so. We waste a lot of time tearing others (or ourselves) down rather than being a part of growth. If you lose your why, you will lose your way. Full disclosure: I didn’t come up with the previous line on my own.

foot prints in the…snow

This world is a crazy one, but there’s not one reason to be unkind. A few nights, maybe weeks, ago, my little love bug was sitting on the couch. She asked me to lay my head in her lap so she could run her fingers through my hair and massage my head. This was at the end of the day I’d given her a foot rub. (She tried to return the favor but I’m too ticklish; a calamity of errors!) Her kind gesture really got me thinking: how often do we dismiss another’s kindness? All those doors you’ve held open, all the polite words you’ve uttered, all the cars you’ve yielded to on the highway. Small examples of something huge.

tread lightly, oh mean one

A few (more) nights ago, I snatched up my phone as it began to ring and yelled “Stop calling me!” to whomever was on the line. An equally angry woman yelled back “You stop calling me, lady! You called me at 10:27 this morning!” As I prepared my retort, she hung up on me. I realize yelling at someone sounds nothing like me. Full story: for days in a row, I kept receiving phone calls from numbers with the same area code and prefix as my own. Never answering, the voicemails would be exactly 22 seconds long with a social security scam schpill. I blocked the numbers but it continued with a final digit difference. I’d had enough. But after what the angry lady said, it dawned on me she was most likely receiving calls from my number with the same garbage message. And, of course, my little child overheard this debacle. Ugh. Not my finest moment. Even after my explanation, she calmly stated I must call back and apologize. Which I did. The other woman didn’t answer; I don’t blame her.

Recently I was told “You never have an opinion. And, if you do, you don’t share it.” Partially paraphrased but the gist is there. If it had been appropriate at the moment, I would have laughed and maybe not stopped. My opinions are everywhere! Hello! Do you read this blog?! I am opinionated to a degree; I just choose not to argue. A discussion is one thing, but if the other parties are only able to express their opinion in loud, overbearing voices, well, I don’t have anything to say. End of story.

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I ask you –

What are you opinionated about?

Do you have a flippant phrase?

Recount a time you were not proud of your phone behavior.

Looking Forward

What’s next in 2021? I steer clear of the word resolutions because it gives me anxiety. Goals is the preferred noun.

the one that started it all

My planner states “find 3 races”. I used find instead of run because what if we’re at the same impasse in 2021 that we were in before. Can’t even imagine.

Soooooooooooo istartedlookingatdoctoralprograms. I have to write it fast because I’m a little in shock myself. Before my mini was born, I made a silent promise I would fulfill my own dreams while ensuring she could have a strong future, too. It’s hard to quantify the importance of our young people seeing their parents/family members/peers succeed. Granted a doctorate isn’t a single year goal, but the planning phase has commenced. I’m narrowing down schools, examining financial requirements, and viewing time tables. Oh boy.

best be bigger than this!

For one, I can’t believe she’ll be 5 this year. Secondly, let’s rearrange our whole lives for me to get (another) advanced degree because I’m a career college student. Lastly, wait… she’s going to be 5?! But she was just born yesterday!

at 7 months old

I’d also like to complete my book. Yes, really, this time. Even with so much time on my hands last year – you, too, right? – it got pushed to the back burner. Not by design but by priority. I think I needed to focus on a lot of other things, like recovering from an unexpected car crash and making a significant job change, in order to appreciate where this book has taken me. Rightfully so, a publisher may also state I have to break it into two books. Humble brag hahaha That sounds like such a terrible problem to have; however, it would mean quite a bit of re-write on my part. This is a ton to think about.

Of course my plans change about as fast as the weather in Texas so we’ll see what happens next. And if 2021 is half as crazy as the previous year, there’s really zero telling. Stand back everyone!

___________________

I ask you –

Do you prefer “goals” or “resolutions”?

Care to share one of yours?

Anyone want to guess how much a doctorate costs these days? How does gofund me work anyway?!

20/20 of 2020

As I was falling asleep one night, I began thinking about the general consensus on 2020: it sucked. But I’m no bandwagonner. That’s a word, right? It didn’t really suck for me. Sure, some parts were more difficult than others, but to be expected.

the look says it all

When I first moved back to Texas, I felt like swiss cheese. The shape seemed to be what everyone wanted; however, some important parts were missing. Speaking of swiss cheese, why does it cost the same as cheese without holes? Like shorts. Why do they cost the same or more than pants? Nevermind.

2020 has been a turning point. The holes represented what I was missing spiritually and mentally and I’ve made incredible strides in these areas over the past year. Suddenly it seems like things are finally coming together. I’ve seen others close on their first home, be promoted at work, celebrate the turn of a presidency, find more time with their families, and the list goes on.

Ladies of Lakeview

I’ve always wanted to host or be a part of a cookie exchange. I was born for cookies. This year was primed for it until, you know, 2020’s issues. So when invited to a small gathering of other cookie-loving, child-rearing, incredible women and friends, I said yes before I even knew what was expected. Really should have done more research. And not one to venture off without my trusty sidekick, we had an amazing night! Next time, I’ll bring individual bags for cookie sharing. And a shopping cart. Apparently you leave with nearly the same number of cookies you arrived with. Who knew?!

No, I didn’t finish my book. Yet. Completion was a goal in 2020, but writing here on the blog has expanded my growth in so many ways. I’m lucky to have witnessed others grow, as well; it’s incredible. Related: why don’t adults get praised for growth like children? You know, people always fuss over children – Look how much you’ve grown this year! Us? No one says a word. Well I’m praising you! We made it. It was lonely, dark, and, frankly, sucked at times yet growth has happened.

Maybe it’s just how you turn the mirror as to what angle the past year is visible.

_________________________

I ask you –

Describe 2020 in one word. Go!

What were your 2020 goals? Did you complete them?

Have you ever been to a cookie exchange? Next year I’m hosting my own and you’re all invited!

Welcome Back!

we have arrived

If you’re reading this, then it’s the very first post of 2021! What a lucky bunch of readers I have. Sound the alarm, wake your neighbors, go to work, do whatever you do best.

Let’s chat about the New Year. Most likely we’ll all be writing the wrong year for awhile, maybe even the wrong month, and still wondering why there’s so many sweets around the house. Oh, just me? Liars. I’m that girl who gets excited about a new year; a new page in our lives and, honestly, if you made it out of 2020 alive you’re doing better than a lot of other folks. Bring out the champagne!

January used to be the busiest month of the year for me. Working in a gym is fraught with resolutionists (definitely made that one up) and many eager to buy their health no matter the cost. Quite sad really. What about the other months, you ask? As expected, I say. Not to be outdone, I’m starting off my year with extra coffee and a 5am wakeup for 21 Days of Fasting and Prayer. Disclaimer: I’m not fasting; I’m de-sugaring. Again. Without my lady love home for the month, I’ll surely succeed at entertaining myself.

a girl and her shadow

Oh! And I’m run streaking! Pay attention to my words. I’m doing a run streak, as in running every day for a whole month. With clothes. It’s January! Then we’ll see where it takes us. Figured since my mini me is gone for another Tennessean adventure I should pack my calendar so full she’ll be home before I know it. Looks like I have the right idea.

Stay tuned for more from 2021!

___________________________

I ask you –

Resolutions? Please share!

On average, how long does it take you to write the correct year? At least until March.

Have you participated in a run streak?

Culinary Masterpiece

Maybe in my next life I’ll be a well-rounded baker who can do more than just amazing cookies. Not that there’s anything wrong with “just amazing cookies”. But seriously. Is it a practice issue or a skills issue? Please don’t answer.

Not too shabby, but they weighed as much as a large cut of beef. At least 5 lbs. Popular opinion: they didn’t rise long enough. The fix: let them rise longer next time. Too easy!

Also, I took a page from a fabulous hostess I know and created a breakfast ring. This was my Christmas breakfast recipe.

Since then I have made a taco ring, too. Just Kelly Crocker’ing it up over here.

_______________________

I ask you –

Am I doing this right?

Yeast and other bread-leavening ingredients: tips?

Let me know if you’d like my non-award winning recipe I so kindly borrowed from someone else and will gladly take the credit for if you like it!

Mistake? I hope not. + Find Me!

It’s scary putting yourself out there for others to really see.

About a month ago, I removed the privacy settings, applied to be a Brooks Running ambassador, and let the chips fall where they may. Fast forward some. I didn’t get the part. At first, I was really bummed and a tiny bit hurt. What did I do wrong? Answer: nothing. I just wasn’t the right fit at this time.

too much

But it’s got me thinking nearly constantly about other ways to be in the limelight. I don’t want to nor am I driven to be an “influencer”; however, I do strive to grow my blog audience. If I can do fun things along the way, like represent my favorite shoe company, then even better! So, in sharing all this, I decided it was time to – drumroll, please – return to the dark web. Facebook, that is.

My reasons for previous deletion still stand, although it was 99% fault of my own for the life implosion. Let’s not, shall we? This time I’m abandoning the secrecy, the constant contact, the drama that tends to enfold everyone in its path. My blog will grow, dammit! And I will continue being my typical hilarious self right here, same as always.

But, if you feel so inclined, you can find me there, too. You know the way by now.

______________________________

I ask you –

Am I rushing things? Are my expectations too high?

Any pointers? Please help!

I still remember when Facebook was only for college students. Those were the days.

When There’s Only One Way from Down

…the conditioning of society to “make” us feel sadness is wrong.

https://getpocket.com/explore/item/on-the-benefits-of-a-blue-period?utm_source=pocket-newtab

Several weeks ago – perhaps even months – a dear friend sent me the above link after reading one of my many rants and raves here. I saved it because I just knew it would come in handy, most likely sooner vs later. This time it was later. Surprise! I don’t know the history behind labeling a rough spot ‘blue’, but I like it better than other phrases used.

When my tiny shadow cries or gets frustrated or doubles down on attention-seeking behavior, the soft mom in me wants to cuddle her and give her everything she wants. But I can’t. Shouldn’t. These times are so important to her development because I won’t always be there to rescue her. By allowing her to experience pain, rejection, and other normal life emotions, I’m nurturing a strong, independent, healthy young lady. It still hurts.

Reflecting on my own life, which I’ve shared some about, I can see how mental and physical health are intertwined. Exercise goes out the door during an aptly named blue period. It can be tough just to put on socks. However, sometimes the only hindrance is myself. Moral of the story: screw what society says you should be feeling and focus on what makes you happy. Like baking.

And always remember if you need help, please ask. Reach out to anyone. Please don’t battle alone.

___________________________

I ask you –

What do you call the feeling of being sad? Down. PMS. In a mood.

Do you have a go-to ritual or activity to cheer yourself up?

Share your thoughts.

Race Recap!

Picturesque scenery

First, we’re pretty lucky to have been able to participate in a race this year. Nearly everything except trail races were cancelled and some road races may not even be returning until 2022. Originally my childhood best friend and I had our sights set on Rock ‘n Roll San Antonio the first weekend of December. Until about 2 weeks before the scheduled start, everyone was saying it was a go. Thankfully, by that time, Morgan and I had decided to swerve right a little in order to register for the Stars at Night Half Marathon near the Natural Bridge Caverns in NE San Antonio.

post-run, pre-pain

Allow me to disclaim as I sit here the morning after reflecting on this race, I need to up my game. Hills. Ugh. I’m a big dummy for not considering if we run in Hill Country there will be…hills. Kel, really? Sadly, I was not prepared, but, thankfully, Morgan was. My hips feel like I tried to smash them between plywood in order to create something new, something altogether too small. Mid-race I made jokes about walking like two old ladies. HaHA, joke’s on you.

Deer kept us company

There were a few sketchy stretches on course: we felt lost once; had to navigate a flooded portion which took us through a large culvert and across pallets and one large rock; and ran alone in a winding, wooded forest for approximately 2 miles. Now we know why headlamps and lights were required. Overall, it was a lot of fun and running with Morgan is always a pleasure.

Sunset photo ops

The resort hotel was beautiful; although I didn’t get any photos of the swimming area, suffice to say it was also gorgeous. A much needed racecation!

Snow globe medal!

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I ask you –

Do you regularly train for hills or elevated surfaces?

What’s been your craziest off-course moment? We weren’t technically off course, but it sure felt like it.

Thoughts on racecations?