Thursday, March 29, 2012

It's like Christmas

Unpacking after this move has been like Christmas. After my things being in storage for 14 months I had forgotten so much of what I had!

I am lucky in the sense that most of the decorations I have come to me with really great meaning. I have things from trips, paintings by my Brother, art from my best friend in High School, presents from friends and family. Everything has meaning, everything has a story.

I can honestly say that unpacking has been a real treat. I have rediscovered so many things that are dear to me. Like the artwork hanging in my living room. I love it. It's special to me for it's own reasons. My living room also includes the stained-glass lantern that I hand-carried all the way back from Morocco.

My bedroom has a painting done by my brother. My living room has a beat-up Tonka Truck dump-truck that has been mine since I was a toddler. It still has dirt on it from Indiana, Colorado, Washington and now Utah.

Yesterday I unpacked my diplomas and certificates to hang on the walls in my office. One of them is a cross-stitch from my Grandma Voris (who passed last year) with my graduation dates and a great quote.

I unpacked all my team photos and signed photos from athletes yesterday. Those will soon hang in my game room. All my athletic memorabilia brings back floods of memories.

Yesterday I cooked myself dinner in my new kitchen. The radio was playing, the sun was shining in through the french doors and the dogs were sleeping on the rug.

As I unpack this house I am blessed to be surrounded by love and memories. It makes this house my home... and that is so special it brings tears to my eyes.

Wednesday, March 28, 2012

New Career Idea... Athletic Team Analysis

So, I was in San Diego all of last week with the track team.

Let me start off by saying, I can't complain at all!! We stayed in a gorgeous house 10 ft from the beach and I got to run on the beach trail every morning. We watched dolphins all day, cheered on surfers both novice and advanced, watched a seal play in the waves and made dessert in the campfires on the beach. A lot of it was sooooo fun.

But I will tell you this. After being in this business for over 14 years I know a thing or two about athletic team dynamics, and this trip was very interesting in this regard! It wasn't what I expected. Some I did expect, but it was a lot deeper than what I anticipated. Some I didn't see coming.

Spending five days with 25 people, living in the same house. You really get to see what is going on. How people feel and what they think. Dynamics and interactions come to the surface in spades.

Maybe I'll write a book....

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

My dogs might as well be celebrities

The other day I am sitting at a stop light. After a few minutes I realize that the mini-van next to me (complete with Mom, Dad and four kids) are all pressed up against their windows waving, kissing and smiling at my car.

It is then that I notice that Porter is standing in my lap with his face pressed against the window, tongue out and his tail going a million miles a minute.

Ike has his head hanging out the back window, trying his darnedest to slobber all over those kids and his tail is thumping on the ceiling faster than ever.

I can't take these two dogs anywhere without people GUSHING over how great they are!

If I take Porter by himself I get how cute he is.

If I take Ike by himself I get how gorgeous he is. (especially on runs... people can't get enough of him when we are on runs!)

If I take them TOGETHER -- Holy cow!! People freak over how great they are, how they are the Big & Little, Tiny vs Huge, etc, etc, etc.

These two are celebrities.

And they are getting along famously. This morning when we woke up Porter crawled out from under the blankets and Ike promptly licked him upside the face. Precious.

Wednesday, March 21, 2012

Ocean, for as far as the eye can see...

Oceanside, California with 25 athletes and coaches from the Westminster College Track team.

Coach knew he wanted to come to a track meet in San Diego and asked me awhile back if I had any secrets to traveling cheap, the only way we were going to be able to come is if we could get it to fit the budget.

I told him that I try to find rental houses, that way we can save money on food... we got back to campus and I went to work. Right away I found a house that was right on the water. It could sleep all 25 of us and it was relatively close to our competition. In the pictures I saw a kitchen that faced a huge half circle of floor-to-ceiling windows that looked straight out on the ocean. I told him that I would cook every single meal for us if he took me to that house....

Well, here we are.

I just got done cooking dinner for 25 people... it went surprisingly well. I actually like cooking for people like that and it is fun to work in the kitchen with some of my athletes.

Today when we got here it was in the 70s, warm!!! We ran outside, waited for vans outside, went to the beach.... and now they are all sunburnt. Some worse than others, and some really bad. Today at the store I bought spf 50 and aloe... we are going to need it.

I am lucky to have a job that allows me to do fun things like this. I am lucky that I have a family at home that takes care of my house and dogs so I can leave for a bit. I am lucky that I have found my niche and that that niche has a future for me. 

So, tonight I sit on the roof-top balcony and listen to the crashing waves, stare out across the pitch dark ocean. Tomorrow I will wake up and cook breakfast for 25 athletes and spend all day in the sun wearing shorts and sandals. It's a good life.

Here's the surprising part.... To date, these track athletes have been the team that eats the most per person!! They beat snowboarding, hockey and football.... crazy, no?!?!

Saturday, March 17, 2012

MUSCLES are meant for MOVING!

 Closed on the house on Wednesday, took the first load of stuff over on Thursday night, took the second load on Friday morning. So, it's all there.... now I just have to unpack.

I hate asking for help, I am sure you all know that by now. But I put the word out and my awesome friends responded. I had great help and we pounded out that move in two easy trips! I didn't expect it to be a hard move, but it honestly went a lot easier than I anticipated.

I spent yesterday afternoon trying to get things unpacked. The refrigerator was delivered and the kitchen and my bedroom are at least half way done. The biggest dilemma so far is where to put the TV. Don't be surprised if that debate shows up for a vote on facebook. It's turning out to be a troublesome decision.

I had the pups with me at the house yesterday. I love how comfortable they seem to be there. They are so calm and peaceful there, it makes me feel like we definitely chose the right place.

Thanks to everyone for all the support. I felt the energy and excitement from everyone and I really appreciate it. I am also incredibly grateful for all those that have lended muscles and organizational skills to the moving and unpacking process. I am always amazed by how supportive and helpful people are in my life. Loves to you all!!

Housewarming party is scheduled for sometime the beginning of May, to coincide with my birthday... so, be prepared!! As soon as I secure a date everyone will know! I have high hopes for this house to be a mega-center of entertaining and playing! So dust off your party hats... we have some fun ahead of us!

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

If only there were catnip for humans...

I went and picked up my new dog, Ike, on Sunday. He has been with his foster family (they fostered him from the shelter where I was lucky enough to find him) and they have been wonderful enough to keep him for me unitl I get into my house.

Well, after dropping him off after our last playdate and both of us having serious emotional trauma with having to leave him there I decided that when I picked him up on Sunday it was for good, no taking him back.

So, you can imagine how this started changing things when I didn't close on my house last week and realized that me, my little dog, and my new huge dog would all be at my parents house for the next week.

Now, this wouldn't really be a huge issue, except this new huge dog of mine loves to chase cats. My brother has a cat. They had met once previously and it ended with Chief (the cat) not coming out from under my parents bed for five hours.

How do we solve the problem? Chief has been locked in my brothers and parents bedrooms since Ike came home. Chief gets to come out when Ike goes for a run, but that isn't much. I have felt awful about this, so as a peace-offering I brought him home some toys yesterday.

This little guy below is one of the toys I brought home. It's called a Show-Gull and has huge plumbs of feathers that come off it's butt and head. Apparently Chief LOVES it and has been playing with it all day.

The other toy I brought home was a small little squirrel that you can fill with loose catnip. Mom filled the squirrel and presented Chief with both the toys. Porter (my little 9-pound dog) stole the squirrel and spent the next couple hours rolling on it and drooling all over this catnip squirrel! Then he spent the next couple hours passed out in bed.

That's correct. My little dog is really a cat. Shhh, don't tell Ike.