Today Alistair’s school held their Memorial Day celebration – a couple of poems and a bunch of songs, performed by the students.
Usually I make him wear a polo shirt and chinos, but this year he decided he wanted to wear a flag shirt to honor the soldiers, and he would not be denied.
Larson wanted to wear a flag shirt because Alistair was, and he could not be denied either.
As always happens at these things, the people sitting in front of me are too tall, or I’m too short, and while I filmed the performances, you can barely see Alistair in the video. I took about 60 photos too, and this is the only one where he can be seen clearly. Such as it is.
I hope you enjoy your long weekends, and take a moment to think of those Memorial Day is meant to represent.
At last week’s guild meeting we hand-dyed some yarn under the guidance of the lovely ladies from A Hundred Ravens. Their method is different from the one I’ve tried in the past, and of course their color sensibility is their own. Nonetheless I’m pretty happy with the outcome of my skein.
Can’t wait to have the headspace to decide what to knit with it…
In the middle of last week things got warm enough to buy a magnetic screen for our back door. (We haven’t quite gotten around to buying a screen door…)
And not a moment too soon, because work has begun on our new back deck.
Saturday morning I ran a 5k race. It was local, but we found out about it almost by accident; unlike most of the races in our town, it got zero mention in the local papers or on facebook. It was a glorious morning, probably about 70 at the start, and sunny. The course didn’t cross any roads and it was pretty flat. I wound up getting a 5k PR, even.
The race (the 2015 POTS Walk and 5K) was a fundraiser to benefit Dysautonomia International, which I’d never heard of. It’s an organization whose goal is to raise funds and awareness for POTS, which I’d also never heard of.
From the website:
POTS stands for Postural Orthostatic Tachycardia Syndrome, which is a disorder of the autonomic nervous system. The autonomic nervous system is responsible for regulating many systems in our bodies including heart rate and blood pressure. When POTS patients stand upright their body is unable to regulate heart rate and blood pressure properly. This leads to an abnormal increase in heart rate. Because the autonomic nervous system is responsible for controlling many bodily functions, POTS brings along a whole host of other symptoms including nausea, fatigue, sweating, lightheadedness, tremors etc.
POTS is a disease that is estimated to effect approximately 1-3 million Americans, mostly young women. Despite its prevalence, most people have never heard of POTS. Even most doctors are unfamiliar with POTS, which makes getting a diagnosis and proper treatment extremely difficult. There is little that doctors understand about POTS and a tragic lack of funding for ongoing research.
In short, a worthy cause. I’m so SO glad we ran this race and supported the cause.
(The Sunday Globe ran a piece, too. http://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2015/05/09/walk-and-raise-money-for-pots-little-known-illness/wUqk81MSiyrcN6NjQvh9cJ/story.html)
Once I got home and cleaned up, it was off to the Smith family races. Larry and Alistair had tickets to go see Avengers 2, and Larson and I spent the afternoon next door to the movie theater, at the Legoland Discovery Center.
Since we have family passes, Larry and Alistair met us inside Legoland after the movie. Alistair claims Legoland is for “little kids”, but he has his moments there, too.
And then Sunday was of course Mother’s Day. This is my 10th one, actually. And I can say with confidence that although the expensive and beautiful presents are always nice to receive, it’s the handmade ones that come home from school that are the ones that make me tear up. Every. Single. Time.
This past weekend was Somerville Open Studios – it’s one of the largest citywide open studio events in the country. Alistair and I spent the afternoon with a friend and his mom, happily walking around town and checking out the amazing array of creativity – between gardens, photographs, interactive electric lights, and murals, there was a lot to take in.
Even the weather was perfectly cooperative, 60s and sunny, and according to my fitness tracker we walked 5.8 miles through the course of the day.
On Sunday the four of us went on a geocache walk. We parked right outside Larson’s preschool, and within a 1.6 mile round trip we found no less than three caches. I am continually amazed at how many of them are right in my town, I think we’ve found 8 so far and we aren’t done yet. Also continually impressed by just how much wild space our city has, four miles outside of Boston.
After that we just puttered around the house and the yard. Our pear tree is blooming…
Last year we grew two pears, but the squirrels got them both. We’re hoping to be able to sample some ourselves this year.
I think I’ve mentioned here before that I’ve set myself the goal of running a 10k this year. I haven’t gotten that far yet, but I’m still working towards it. I did my first five-mile run last weekend.
A few of my running friends and I have signed up for a 10k in late September, so I have plenty of time to reach that distance and get used to it. I hope.
In a related story, Larry got my a fitness band for Christmas. Given the awful winter I didn’t do much with it in the way of goal-setting, but at the end of March I set myself a few targets. I wanted to meet my daily-steps goal 20 days out of 30, and I wanted to have a monthly average of 10,000 steps a day.
Here we are on May 1, and as I look back on the month of April I see some positives and some things to continue working on.
As you can see, I made my 10,000-step average goal, but only made my daily-step goal 15 days. So I’m going to continue both goals into the month of May.
The BAA race kicked off school vacation week. That Saturday also happened to be Science Week in Cambridge, with all sorts of activities and free events. Larry’s mom took the boys to one of the venues, and Alistair ATE. A. BUG. I wish I had been there to see it, but I’m so proud of him being brave enough to try it. He says it tasted like an unsalted roasted almond.
The Middlesex Fells posted another Story Walk for vacation week, and we went and did it on Sunday. A nice easy half-mile stroll through the woods, what could be better for a recovery day.
Around here the Monday of school vacation is Patriots Day (also Marathon Monday). Paul Revere’s famous ride went right through our town and every year there are reenactments all over the area. Given Alistair’s Paul Revere project earlier this year, it was a can’t miss opportunity for us.
Unfortunately it was a cold and rainy day. We had expected to be outside for 20 minutes, tops, but we quickly realized we weren’t properly dressed for the weather.
Nonetheless, we saw some of the speeches, heard the bugler play Taps at the colonial burial ground, and marched with the high school band from the burial ground around to the spot where Paul was headed.
Where we waited. And waited. The boys gave it a solid 45 minutes, then my dad (who’d also given it a go) drove them home. I gave it another 10 minutes, but when I began to lose feeling in my fingers, I gave up and started walking home. And of course who do I see?
He gave me a hearty “The British are marching!” as he passed.
I promised the boys we will dress properly next year and stay for the whole thing…
Larry and I had to work Tuesday and Wednesday, but on Thursday we headed southeast for a short family getaway to Cape Cod.
Where it was also 45 and windy. But at least it didn’t rain! And we did manage to hit the beach…two beaches, actually. I wanted to show the boys the difference between bayside beaches and outer cape beaches.
We stayed at a family-friendly resort, complete with a year-round outdoor pool and an indoor wave pool. And Alistair, who first protested he was too big for a balloon hat, ended up with the most intricate balloon hat I’ve ever seen.
Not that Larson’s was any sort of slouch.
But – did I mention the wave pool? We were on the Cape for about 40 hours, total – they were in the pool for probably 8.
And here we are, back to reality. Thud.