What are we talking about today?

I'll get back to theme days once I find a groove of posting regularly. In the meantime, most of my posts are about some variation of books, bikes, buses, or Broadway. Plus bits about writing, nonprofits, and grief from time to time.

This blog is mostly lighthearted and pretty silly. It's not about the terrible things happening in the world, but please know that I'm not ignoring those things. I just generally don't write about them here.

30 June 2008

Saturday: The Party

So I woke up Saturday morning, all ready to run. Yes, even on a party day, I still had a seven-mile training run to do. I drove out to my parents' house, to run around their block. I had been looking forward to conquering that block for two months, and I am happy to say I did it. I had one of those moments of wishing I had taken advantage of long, straight, lightly-travelled county roads while I lived on one. But in junior high & high school, it never occurred to me to run outside of track season. And once I stopped running track, I only ran very occasionally. So there you go.

Anyway! Dad & Mum had to go to Shelbyville to get some links removed from her watch, so I went with them. On the way, we stopped at The Gathering Grounds so I could get a cup of tea (I hadn't had one yet) and say good-bye to the people there, because we spent a ton of time in that place that week. Chad and Billy went to The Gathering Grounds for breakfast. Denise went to Party City to get another tablecloth. Grandma stayed home to make punch (and, it turned out, the queso, because I hadn't melted the cheese yet).

So the party itself went smoothly. Billy had a nasty headache, so he went off to lie down in the auditorium for a while (causing everyone to think he had left). I had a very amusing conversation with Aunt Glenda, Gertrude & Amanda. Dad and Aunt Vicki tore down the balloons to pummel each other with them (thus proving true Denise's prediction that the kids would tear the balloons down). Chad led the singing of "Happy Birthday", after I dripped wax all over the place lighting the candles. And the '60s music delighted me, if no one else.

After the party, we had an evening of chitchat, card playing, movie-watching, and finally, packing and a bit of sleeping. My kind and faithful brother came to pick us up at 4 AM on Sunday morning to take us to the airport. Flying on Sunday was a new experience for me; I kept forgetting what day it was. But I was very glad the next day was Memorial Day, so I could rest.


Nearly made Grandma crazy. Decided to let her make punch. Got some last-minute things at Wal-Mart. Decorated the church building. (I had to stand on the tables, which worried Grandma to no end. About the tables, I think, not my safety.) Checked out '60s music from the library.

Friday evening pretty much warrants its own post. We had decided we wanted the younger crowd (Chad & I, Billy, Denise, and Amanda) to go out to dinner and have fun without the benefit of any middle-aged people around. So we went to Applebee's, which we are very fond of.

Now my sister has been a teetotaler for the last four years. The rest of us have all had a drink (or few) since turning 21, but Denise has been holding out on us. Until that fateful night. She tried my strawberry daquari and Billy's Bud Light (and I'm surprised the taste of that didn't completely put her off alcohol forever), before ordering a banana daquari (and getting carded in the process. Heehee!). Amanda took a picture of all of our drinks. I was afraid she'd be bored, hanging out with a bunch of people 10+ years older than herself, but I think we kept her pretty well amused.

So, after we finished dinner, we went out to Opal's house to collect Mum's cake. Denise managed to get her hand stuck in the handle on the seat back in front of her, then fell off her seat altogether (while wearing a seatbelt, mind you) when Chad swerved. I would say that this is the result of the alcohol in her system, except she acts like that all the time. Amanda also got pictures of both those events.

Then we went back to Grandma's house and played Uno, until Aunt Glenda came along to get Amanda home safely. Well, it was after 11, and she is still a new driver.

29 June 2008

I guess my TV will just gather dust for a month.

So, that's it. Well done Spain, you certainly deserve to be the European Champions.

One more week of Wimbledon. Tomorrow, all the players I am keeping an eye on (Federer, Williams, Nadal, Murray, and Williams) will be playing, so I suppose I should grow an extra pair of eyes. My ideal finish next weekend would be Williams v. Williams on Saturday, and Federer v. Nadal on Sunday. Two great days of tennis. Of course, I want Nadal to defeat (but not too badly) Andy Murray to get there. In other words, Andy, please win tomorrow.

And after Wimbledon is over... nothing. Well, one more weekend of televised Olympic trials, but other than that, I have nothing to watch until 08.08.08.

I suppose it might be healthy to be away from the telly for a month.


Yeah, I don't remember. Went to the gym with Grandma again. Went to Applebee's to celebrate Mum's proper birthday (Tuesday). Dad got in a huff, so we just ignored him. Went to Party City, went to Gordon's, went to church. Caused Grandma stress.


Went to church. Had a potluck. Went to Circle Centre to find Mum a new outfit. Horrified Grandma at the stuff we were picking out. Terrified Denise on the glass elevator. Had to leave to get back to Greenfield in time for evening church. Took issue with some of the things said in Bible class.

Prayers Urgently Needed

I think everyone who comes on here knows, or has heard of, Billy & Belinda Moore. I copied this note from their daugher Amanda & son-in-law Jacob off of Belinda's blog. Please lift them up in prayer.

From Jacob and Amanda

Hello to all,

First of all we would like to thank you from the bottom of our hearts for your prayers for Noah. He is a strong, little boy and is in good spirits. His test has come back positive for Tay-Sachs, and we will be keeping you posted on news as we know it. Here is a web-site that we have been looking at and would like to share with you if you have desire to look at it. http://www.ntsad.org/ We are still praying for Noah's healing and continue to ask that you join with us in this prayer. Please share this letter with others.

Thank you,
The Henderson's

Jacob & Amanda were among my aim classmates, then small group-mates after I moved back (and the first few months that Chad & I were married). They have been faithfully serving the Lord in Mexico for several years now.

28 June 2008


(Yeah, I fell behind in my recaps. Sorry.)

So I woke up at 2 AM to phone Dawn and wish her a happy wedding day, only to get Karen (Dawn's sister) instead, who told me she wouldn't be waking Dawn up until 8. I puzzled over this for a few minutes before I finally remembered that Indiana is 5 hours behind Glasgow, not 6. So I turned on the TV, woke up Grandma (oops), and finally phoned Glasgow at just past 3. After a nice conversation with Dawn, I went back to bed.

So when I woke up for real, I came out of bed at a run (almost literally) to get ready for our race. Oatmeal and orange juice were first on the agenda, followed by putting on my warm-weather outfit, going outside, coming back in, putting on the cool-weather outfit, going outside, then coming in and compromising on the cool-weather trousers and both shirts. This turned out to be a good idea later on.

I wasn't running with the iPod, because I didn't know how serious the organisers were about the no-headphones rule (because it is a USATF rule, race organisers are obligated to say it, but thus far most races aren't enforcing it. Thank goodness.). So I had all my running songs on the iPod to get me into pregame in the car. We loaded up in the van, then had to stop at the first grocery store so the family could load up on doughnuts.

We had to take a detour around the racecourse, so we didn't go quite the same direction on Saturday as we did Friday. We pulled up to a light to go to the parking area in time to see a huge pack of runners taking off, and after I started to come down from my panic attack I realised it was the half-marathon start, not the 5K.

So, we got parked, Chad and I set out to walk to the start line, and the family headed for a shuttle bus. This was the family's first race to witness, and I think they had fun with it. We had to stand in the start area for ages before taking off, because the last of the half pack had to clear our course before we could start. However, that was plenty of time for me to decide that it was too warm for my long-sleeved shirt, so I took it off and gave it to Mum. (She hasn't gotten to hold my stuff for a while, so I'm sure she was happy about that. ) I had worn that particular shirt with the idea that it wouldn't be a great loss if I had to take it off and leave it on the side of the road somewhere.

So, the course was hilly, but really nice; people were standing in front of their houses cheering us on the entire way. I had my splits written on my hand, but all the clocks were ticking away the half-marathon time, and I hadn't seen our time as we crossed the start line, so I wrote on my hand for nothing. However, I did manage to keep track of our time between miles, since I had nothing better to do than mental arithmetic while running.

There were lots & lots of kids on this race. I really was delighted to see that, because I think running is a great sport for kids. If nothing else, it is something that can be continued for one's entire life, long after high school letter jackets are shoved to the back of the closet and the only football game you can get is vs. the rest of the family at Thanksgiving. We passed a couple of girls right before the end of mile 2, and one of them was asking, "When is the second mile going to be over?" I giggled and told her, "Really soon," and they both looked surprised (I don't think it occurred to them that someone might be listening), and then the girl who had asked smiled and said, "Thanks!"

So, one mile later, we were crossing the bridge and I could see the crowd at the finish line. I knew by the clock that we had run mile three in around 10 minutes (which was my goal), and then as I rounded the corner, the clock at the finish said 30:18. No kidding. That alone was enough for me to dig really, really deep and sprint the last .1 as if my life depended on it. I shouted to Chad (before running out of breath), "Look at the time!" but he didn't understand me. Just before I crossed the finish line, I heard Dad yelling my name, so I waved.

We got through the finish chute, returned our timing chips, collected our medals, water, and bananas, and met up with the family on the other side. Chad took advantage of the free massage booth, while I headed straight to the results tent. On the way, Dad told me he didn't know my time because the clock had stopped at 30:18. I stopped walking and asked, "Are you serious?" He said yes, so I told him that it was the sight of that time that helped me pour on the speed at the end.

So, here are our official results from our first "big" race:

Chad: 31:44, 24th in his age group, 279th out of 614 men, and 443rd overall.
Susan: 31:47, 18th in my age group, 168th out of 1027 women, and 448th overall. There were 1641 finishers in the race.

After the race, Grandma wanted Denny's, so that's where we went.

Saturday, Part 2

So after such a glorious race, we were all set to go to my second favourite place on earth; which is, of course, Spring Mill Bible Camp. Grandma's side trip to Denny's put us an hour behind when we should have been heading out, but alas, that happens sometimes.

The trip from Indianapolis to Mitchell is quite a nice one, with plenty of trees and hills to look at. Some things (businesses and whatnot) along the way haven't changed a bit since the first time we went down there 19 years ago. (Wow, when I put it that way it sounds like a long time.) When we arrived, we had missed pretty much everything, although the camp was still open, so I took my husband on the grand tour.

We went through the boys' side, so we could show him Billy's first cabin (possibly his favourite, although I can't be sure about that). In the course of this little walk Denise told us it was her first time over there. Well, her first time was probably the aforementioned first trip 19 years ago, but I can't imagine she remembers that. But during camp sessions, boys and girls keep to their own sides and are not allowed to venture into enemy territory. Denise, being a well-behaved camper, kept this rule impeccably (Billy did too, actually). But their older sister was, um, less well-behaved. So I've actually been to the boys' side a few times.

The path through the boys' cabins comes out on the ballfield, so I showed Chad the site of the softball-to-the-head incident, and we discussed how freaked out Denise was when she saw me being led to the infirmary with an icepack on my head. She claims not to remember that, either.

So after all that, we strolled around the paths at the back of the campgrounds. We looked for my rock, and Billy and Denise and I all agreed that it was certainly gone. This rock was where I used to go when we had "alone" time (meant to be used for Bible reading, praying, reflecting, whatever), and it became well-known among those who spent two or more weeks at camp every summer to look for me there if ever I couldn't be found. I wanted to show Chad where it was, but it was not to be.

On the way home, we stopped at KFC (yuck), and then when we got back to Greenfield we went to the new custard place (yum). Dad took us home via the scenic route, so we could see some new stuff that's gone up in the 10 years or so since I last drove around Central Indiana.