Thursday, May 29, 2014

Star Wars at Disneyland

After Tuesday's announcement, what are y'all's thoughts?  I wish I could say I'm excited about this race because I love Star Wars.  Well, New Hope, Empire and Jedi, not that other crap.  Side note: I'm waiting on Disney to release the original movies on DVD.  Han was the only one who shot!  Back to this post... I really wish I was excited, but I need to take a runDisney break for quite a while.  Not only to make sure that the cortisone shot works and I can start back with 5Ks, but just to get away from the whining, frenzy and drama.

That being said, of course I'll be following along to see the running costumes and the bling Disney designs.  I'll give them this, they can design some pretty special bling for their races.  Which character(s) will go with which races?  Or if not characters, perhaps ships?  One could be the Millennium Falcon and the other could be a Star Destroyer.  The design team has plenty of options to chose from.

Wednesday, May 28, 2014

Where in the World: Normandy and Colleville-sur-Mer

These "where in the world" pictures are courtesy of my parents.  After my cousin and I were in Paris in 2008, my parents took my grandfather to Paris and to Normandy to celebrate his 80th birthday.  My grandfather was not quite old enough to be part of the European invasion, but if WWII had gone on any longer, my grandfather's military service would've been needed in Japan.  After WWII, he transferred to the navy and patrolled the Northern Atlantic.  He's got some good stories too about missions and, at times, bailing out his petty officers.

Tuesday, May 27, 2014


I love Sangria.  It's a serious weakness, and if it's on the menu, I'll order it.

1 lemon
1 lime
1 orange
1 1/2 cup rum
1/2 cup sugar
1 bottle dry red wine
1 cup orange juice

Have fruit, rum, wine and orange juice well chilled.  Slice the lemon, lime and orange into rounds and place in a large glass pitcher.  Pour in the rum and sugar.  Chill for 2 hours.  When ready to serve, crush fruit lightly with a wooden spoon and stir in the wine and orange juice.

Sunday, May 25, 2014

Random Sunday Musings 5/25

Happy Memorial Day weekend y'all!  Anyone have any fun plans?  I'm making spaghetti sauce since it's not too hot still and I'm almost out of my last batch, and I'm still trying to kick this cold.

I went in Friday to get a cortisone shot and I'm waiting to see how it feels.  Once the topical numbing stuff wore off, the area really felt sore.  My PT did some massage work on my IT Band Wednesday so between that and the shot, I wasn't surprised it was sore at work.  They said I could use ice packs when I got home, but I had to get home.  The injection site felt so much better yesterday, still a little sore, but now where near the soreness on Friday, and this morning I don't feel any soreness.  I'm still taking it easy, following my PT's advice and letting the shot work its magic.

I've taken this entire week off because of my cold, but I need to get back into Pilates at least and tighten up my core.  I did 20 minutes core Pilates Saturday morning and if the injection site continues to feel good, I'll head back to the weight room.  I won't test out running until next weekend.

Saturday, May 24, 2014

Soccer Post: the Exclusion of Landon Donovan

With the World Cup coming up, I'll have occasional posts about the US team and the tournament.  So today's post isn't a typical running post.

We are 36+ hours after the US roster was released for the World Cup.  30 players in camp have now been whittled down to the 23-man roster.  The biggest name left off the roster is Landon Donovan.  He's played in 2002, 2006 and 2010 and I had to process the news.  The signs were there but I didn't expect the coach, Jurgen Klinsmann, to actually drop Donovan.  He obviously has the support to drop the best player in US history, but it's obvious to me Donovan is not the best player now.  The question is is he truly no longer in best 23?

Yes, Donovan scored a world cup-saving goal in 2010 against Algeria.  We were on the way out of the tournament and going home until that injury time goal.  An opportunity he created by pushing the counterattack when he needed to.  But he hasn't been in that kind of form for a while.  He took a self-imposed sabbatical early in 2013 because he said he was tired, and I understand that.  But how many professional athletes take a sabbatical?  I can't name one.  The coach made it clear he was not happy, to say the least, with that sabbatical, and made Donovan earn his way back.

Donovan's form of course has been in question.  He hasn't played well for his club this season, his fitness was rumored to just be "good", and my take with that is "good but not good enough."  I was in Kansas City for the Jamaica qualifier in October, and Donovan did not look good in that game.  He was subbed off at halftime for Graham Zusi, who scored the first goal of the game on the US's way to a 2-0 victory.  What does it say when the coach takes off "the US's best player" and another player sparks life into the game?  He also did not start the friendly against Mexico in April because the coach called him out for sluggish practices.  That's just one month ago.

My big point is Donovan keeps saying he's getting older and he can't train the way he used to and his body doesn't recover.  He's 32, so I get that, but the US has a grueling travel schedule in Brazil.  This isn't Germany 2006 where an easy train ride or bus can take the team to games.  This is BRAZIL.  They'll train at base camp, travel to the game sites, train, play the game, and travel back.  Our base will be in Sao Paulo but our games are in Natal, Manaus, and Recife.  I read that's almost 9,000 miles in the group stage.  If Donovan can't recover now for MLS games, think about traveling 9,000 miles for 3 games.

He also has a tendency to disappear during big games that aren't against Mexico.  He disappeared in the 2006 World Cup games when then-coach Bruce Arena needed him to step up and be a leader.  If he were to be used a sub, would he bring his A-game, or would he disappear once he was on the field?

In the end, I agree with this decision.  It's funny because my dad and I always seem to see eye to eye on soccer stuff, but he doesn't agree with the decision.  I certainly don't find any joy in this decision, despite thinking it's the right one.  Donovan has done so much for US Soccer, and he is the best player in our history.  But careers always end, and sports is brutal.  Sentimentality never guarantees games.  The world does not expect the US to advance out of the group, but even so, I think the coach feels he has put together the best team, and that's the most important thing.

"I'm not looking for the best players, Craig, I'm looking for the right ones."
~ Miracle

Thursday, May 22, 2014

R&H's Cinderella

I know there are several versions of Rogers and Hammerstein's Cinderella, but the version I grew up with is the one with Lesley Ann Warren.  I absolutely love that version.  It's my favorite version of Cinderella, and it far exceeds Disney's movie (IMO).  I grew up with both versions, but as I grew up, I stayed with R&H's.  I was named after a different actress named Lesley, but I like Lesley Ann Warren - anyone seen Victor/Victoria?  She steals the scenes she's in.

The blue stepsister is Pat Carroll, who voices Ursula in the Little Mermaid.  And I do still call her Blue Stepsister, even though the sisters have names (Prunella and Esmerelda).  Blue Stepsister and Pink Stepsister.

"In My Own Little Corner" inspired the new name for my blog, but I love all the songs in this movie.  I really don't know why I didn't stick with Disney's version, but there are some Disney movies I just haven't watched in years.  Blasphemy I know, but I confess, Pinocchio, Dumbo, Cinderella, the Fox and the Hound, and Aladdin are on that list, and I haven't even seen the Black Cauldron, Atlantis, Dinosaur, and anything between Lilo and Stitch and the Princess and the Frog.  These are just Disney films.  I've seen every Pixar filmed made.

Wednesday, May 21, 2014

Where in the World: St. Petersburg

The cruise, 2005: we were in St. Petersburg for 2 days.  My mom signed us up for 3 tours the first day: morning, afternoon, evening.  You'd think I'd sleep through the night after that but nope.  2:30am in July is quite sunny, and the ship didn't have blackout curtains.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Chicken Milanese

I wanted to try something different this weekend and on Friday I decided on Chicken Milanese.  I made is Sunday, just in time for this cold to take hold and give me a queasy stomach.  Despite that, I still felt the dish turned out quite well.

Flattened chicken
1/3 cup flour
2 eggs
1 1/4 cup bread crumbs
1 t dried thyme
2 t dried basil
2/3 cup shredded Parmesan cheese
olive oil
salt and pepper to taste

In one bowl put flour, 1 bowl put 2 eggs beaten, and combine the bread crumbs, thyme, basil and cheese in the third.  Salt and pepper the chicken, then lightly dredge in the flour, beaten eggs, and breadcrumb mixture.

Heat olive oil (the recipe calls for vegetable oil, I went with olive oil) in skillet on medium heat, add chicken.  Cook 3-4 minutes each side.  If cooking many chicken pieces, place cooked chicken on a baking sheet and put in the oven at 150 degrees to keep warm.

There was a sauce with the recipe which I skipped.  I didn't want sauce adding weight to the chicken.  Instead I did what CPK does and put the chicken on a bed of arugula.  I also bought a loaf of rosemary and olive oil bread, which was quite tasty.  I threw in some fruit to have a serving and voila!  I have two big pieces of chicken remaining so I have leftovers for two meals this week.

Sunday, May 18, 2014

Random Sunday Musings 5/18

First, happy 34th anniversary Mom and Dad!

This past week was a little different as most of my focus was on strength training.  I didn't end up running because 1) a cold front came through Monday and brought with it something that my allergies did not react well to, and developed into a cold, and 2) Friday my friends and I went to see Avenue Q.  I'd never seen it, but some of them keep singing the songs so when we saw Avenue Q was coming, I jumped at the chance.  It was put on by a local theater troupe, and now I know all the references.

I thought about doing yoga even with my cold, but then I figured my sinuses wouldn't appreciate things like downward facing dog.  I slept in both mornings so I took that as a sign and decided to rest both days.


Sunday: weight lifting

Monday: core Pilates

Tuesday: weight lifting, 1 mile bike

Wednesday: core Pilates

Thursday: weight lifting

Friday: rest, blog re-name, Avenue Q

Saturday: rest, cold

Friday, May 16, 2014

New Title!

As you can tell with the new website address, my blog has a new title :)  I'd been thinking of doing it, even all the way back last summer, but I never committed.  It's been on my mind lately and I just decided to make the change.  It's In Lesley's Corner, and if y'all have seen the R&H Cinderella, the new title's inspired by one of the songs "In My Own Little Corner."  I decided to change things up because I post more about life than just running, especially right now.  Blogspot switched all the URLs to the new name which made it pretty easy.  I've edited some posted links on FB, back through mid-April, but the ones with the old names won't take you to my blog anymore.

I still like the layout of my blog, so that won't change (at the moment :-p).   It's still me but the blog's title doesn't peg me as "just a runner" anymore.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Soundtrack Music

Are there any movies y'all love the soundtrack to and just can't get enough of?  I'll admit, Mamma Mia! falls into this category.  I know I've mentioned the songs before, but it's a staple on my iPod.  I have the whole soundtrack on its own list under my workout playlists.  When I start, either running or even driving, I can listen to it on repeat.  When the movie's on, I'm always singing and dancing along to the songs that I miss the actual scene of the song.  I haven't seen the Broadway play, but the movie is just so much fun.  It's the kind of movie I go see at the theater.  I don't want preaching or politics.  I just want F-U-N.

Tuesday, May 13, 2014

Mother's Day

How was everyone's Mother's Day?  I called my mom Sunday afternoon, but the entire day was just lazy.  I was out with friends to our CHL team's final playoff game and didn't get to sleep until after 1, technically Sunday morning, not Saturday night.  The Allen Americans repeated as CHL champs and, unlike NHL teams, we were able to go down onto the ice to celebrate with the players.  Don't mind my friend photo bombing the picture.  A few of my friends were doing that.

So Sunday was a recovery day.  I don't bounce back like I did in college.  Of course, I could actually sleep in when I was in college before having to dive into homework.  I woke up with a headache over my left eye, went to lift weights with said headache, and it didn't go away until I took an Advil and a Benadryl at the same time.  The headache was from lack of sleep, or my sinuses were active (I only drank water Saturday night).  Either way, it worked.

I also remembered my sweet Allie is also a mama.  All 8 of her babies were adopted last year, but here is a family picture I got from Allie's foster mom.  Allie was also being VERY cute on Mother's Day.  She wanted to snuggle a couple times.  She knew it was Mother's Day.  It was a nice low-key day for us both but I did give her some cat treats to help her celebrate.

Sunday was also the Once Upon a Time finale.  Anyone catch it and can't wait for next season?  Who should they cast?

Sunday, May 11, 2014

Random Sunday Musings 5/11

It seems my funk has passed, at least I hope so.  By the end of the week I'd done 1.5 miles and yoga on Saturday morning.  I ended up doing a mile straight during that run, which felt great, but then I had a slight twinge at the end of the 1.5 miles.  I'm trying to stay positive because it did feel so good to finally do a mile without intervals.


Sunday: weight lifting

Monday: rest

Tuesday: weight lifting

Wednesday: rest

Thursday: rest

Friday: 1.5 miles

Saturday: 30 minutes yoga

Thursday, May 8, 2014

The I-Don't-Wanna's

Yes, after writing about my frustration, I hit a case of the I-don't-wanna's.  I didn't wanna do yoga and I didn't wanna workout.  I was keeping up with weight lifting but that was it.  I'm in a sleeping pattern right now where I wake up at 3 or 4, and my cat has nothing to do with it.  Oh, she'll try to get breakfast early, but I don't cave.  She's not going to get breakfast that early and then think that's the way it'll be from now on.  No.

Maybe it's the sleeping pattern, maybe it's the frustration.  Or maybe it's just the freedom I have right now by not training.  If I don't feel like working out, then I don't have to.  I feel like resting this month too would be good because I have a busy June coming up.  Anybody going to watch the World Cup?  I sprung for a new Dutch jersey, and since I don't look good in orange, I went with the away jersey.  If Nike was capable of making a good-looking US jersey, I'd buy it.  But the last one I really liked was for the 2002, even before we made it to the last 8.  But I didn't buy it, so this is what I have for 2014:

So be warned.  I will be blogging about the games.

Wednesday, May 7, 2014

Where in the World: Oahu

Lauren guessed last week's post.  It's Oahu, specifically Honolulu from the top of Diamond Head.

My dad and I went out to Hawaii in 2006 and when you wake up the first morning, after traveling from Boston, it's "wicked" early.  My sleeping pattern, and stomach, were 5 hours ahead of Oahu time.  McDonald's provided breakfast, and a big sign I was in Hawaii, provided pineapple as part of the breakfast I ordered.  We hiked Diamond Head that first morning, before I failed at snorkeling and succeeded at surfing that trip.

Tuesday, May 6, 2014

There's a Wall There, Trust Me

Remember Emperor's New Groove and Kronk saying there's a wall (though different topic)?  Well I hit that wall last week.  Despite me enjoying the weight lifting and yoga, sometimes all I want to do is run.  My run two weekends ago was 1.25 miles and I didn't feel comfortable with my knee doing 1.5.  Then when I was at the grocery store after running, my knee tweaked a little bit when I was walking in one of the aisles.  I almost lost my composure when I got home.  I'm trying to do everything right to correct my ITBS, and I know it was only April, but I was ready to scream.  I've hit that frustration wall.

Luckily I have my trusty Rock Tape.  I've tried not to use the tape when I've been running because I don't want my knee to get used to it and the support it provides.  But I did 1.5 miles on Thursday with it on and I may have to compromise in that regard.  All I know is I lost it on an email to my mom and vented my frustrations.  She vents to me, I vent to her.  Mostly about injuries due to running.  I know summer will put a lid on my wanting to run because it'll be so bloody hot, but right now I just want to enjoy the nice weather.  It won't last much longer now that it's May.

Sunday, May 4, 2014

Random Sunday Musings 5/4

My friends and I needed a quotable movie during our watching party for FCD.  They were losing 4-1 and we lost interest.  Someone suggested Monty Python and the Holy Grail, which I had, but it was at home.  Next time.

It got me thinking about great quotable movies.  Holy Grail is obviously one of those.  Also the Princess Bride.  I warn people, don't try to out-quote me on the Princess Bride.  I'd also consider the Birdcage and Pirates of the Caribbean: Curse of the Black Pearl, and my friend Liz would be adamant that I have Miracle on this list.  What about y'all?  Any movie y'all can't sit through without the absolute, torturous need to quote it?

Edit on 5/5: I watched Star Wars last night, and it's totally quotable.  "Red 5 standing by."  "He feared you might follow old Obi-Wan on some damn fool idealistic crusade like your father did."  "
That's no moon. It's a space station."  See?


Sunday: Weight lifting

Monday: rest

Tuesday: weight lifting

Wednesday: 35 minutes yoga for stress release

Thursday: 1.5 miles

Friday: 35 minutes yoga for stress release

Saturday: rest

As you can tell, I needed the yoga for stress release twice this week.  It was the first week I tried the routine, and it did a good job at pushing out the stressful thoughts.

Thursday, May 1, 2014

Good-Bye Boston

I know I personally said good-bye to Boston when I left 5 years ago, but now my parents are leaving.  As long as they were living there, I had reasons to go back and visit, free room and board.  Family vacations are now in Colorado and the last time I was in Boston was Thanksgiving 2012.  For the first time since 1997, not a single one of us will be living there.  I don't know how I feel, to be honest.  It doesn't feel weird right now since family vacations shifted west a few years ago, and my home is in Dallas.  It may hit me later, but I don't know when I'll be back to visit Boston.

Alpaca farm in Colorado