Thursday, February 27, 2014

Winter into Spring

I'm taking a few minutes to break from planning during violin lessons to mess with blog settings and Amazon links. They seem to be working, which means I'm already collecting a little bit towards next year's school materials. This is very exciting. Feel free to use the links below and to the right, and to share like crazy.

The weather has been generous the last couple of days. Sunny, highs in the low 50's, and the garden is responding accordingly. Tulips noses have  been out of the dirt for a few weeks now, and have just shot up. The Sarcococa is still smelly as can be - it saves February from feeling like  an irretrievably dismal month, garden-wise. There are baby cresses still ready for us, and a collection of gorgeous red lettuces in a raised bed. K trimmed back the Munstead lavendars while I snipped dead stuff off the bleeding hearts and freed their new burgundy shoots from the already budding vinca. The sweet woodruff is fluffing up again, and the bronze fennel is throwing feathery copper shoots. Snow is in the forecast for the weekend. Heh.

The girls have decided to put some of their Christmas money toward a 10K in April, this time with Q. So we're training a little differently, because that first 10K a year and a half ago was tough, and that was without pushing the giant boy. Last week we hit 5 miles in intervals, this week we should hit 5.5. It's kind of nifty to be out in the weather this time of year. Aside from the explicit, distracting meanness in a pounding, sunny, 22 degree wind, there's been something rewarding in each of the varying runs over the last couple of months. We pushed a tree off the trail after a couple of big wind storms went through. There are little green shoots in the swampy areas, and ducks appearing on the river again. We've discovered that the girls easily outrun me in the early parts of any given run, while I (usually) end the run at a faster pace than they're running. Except for S, who is faster than all of us, almost all of the time.

The packing of Q for cold weather runs has had it's own learning curve. He wears thermals under a layer of fleece, fleece mittens, hot towels or Hot Feet (the sticky version of Hot Hands), and a fleecy hat and maybe scarf. Tucked around him then is a fleece blanket, a down throw (stolen from a sister) when it's below 30, his fleece-lined black windproof stadium blanket, and then his velcro-ed vinyl enclosure to keep the breeze down even further. It's always interesting trying to keep his face dry (drool) and warm, and unchapped. Olive oil, Eucerin, Traumeel, and Aquaphor have all been helpful with that over the course of winters. We tuck an extra towel into the back of the Wike, too, in case we need to switch out on longer runs. I feel like we've sort of got a handle on this now - which means something is about to change, no doubt.

I guess that's us in a nutshell. Q will have some procedures toward the end of March, combining needs for anesthesia to his advantage. More about that and music and school later.

Hoping you can see some cherry blossoms where you are. If not, find some cherry ice cream or something instead. Here, I'll make some ganache to go with it. We'll share.