Sunday, September 28, 2008

Doing Hard Time

Here's a picture of me doing some hard time at the anamosa prison museum. Those cells are pretty small I'm glad I get to go home tonight.
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Anamosa Prison Museum

The family and I decided to check out the anamosa prison museum today.
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Lunch Time Antics

Trying to get Marshall and Clancey to eat can be a trying expierence. They both sit and make each other laugh and neither one does much eating. We threatened to have them eat in different rooms so that they will both actually get fed. I guess that's the hazard of having two rambuncious little boys.

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Saturday, September 27, 2008

Marshall Enjoying Some RC Racing

Marshall and I found a place in the mall to race radio controlled cars. I suspect I'm going to have a hard time getting him to leave ;).
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Enjoying the Train at the Mall

Marsh and I decided to hit the mall to hang out for a bit. After we threw every bit of change I have into the fountain Marshall decided he wanted to find the train. I think Marshall is really enjoying finally getting to spend some time with me after all of my busy weekends.
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Fun Day for the Boys

After weeks of daddy being away on the weekends Marshall and I went out for a fun day together. First we went to Pancheros and then Coldstone and then we may go buy a video game. I guess we will see where the day takes us.
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Silly Clancey

Clancey woke up early this morning and is being silly. He has been sticking his tounge out and laughing. Clancey is quite the little ham.
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Friday, September 26, 2008

First Day Back To Work

Today was my first day back to work after my long Sweden trip. Last night about 1:00 am I woke up and was ready to get out of bed because it was 8:00 am in Sweden. I had to force myself back to sleep so I could get back on Central Time. Today I'm really not feeling to bad but I suspect here in a couple hours I'm going to start to get tired because it would have been my normal bedtime for the last week. It would be hard to imagine traveling back and forth to Europe on a regular basis because the jet lag would do you in. While I enjoyed being on travel I'm happy to be back but not so happy to have to did through the hundreds of emails that stacked up over the last week.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

In Detroit Airport

Here I am on the last leg of my trek home from Sweden. I've been traveling for about 14 hours now and are just a couple from home :). I do have to say that traveling business class and hanging in the NWA airport lounges makes it a bit easier but traveling that long does suck.
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In Amsterdam Again

Here I am in Amsterdam again on my way back to the states. Traveling can be quite tiring especially when you let the Swedish take you out parting until 2:00 am the morning of your 6:00 am flight. I have to say I'm glad I'm in business class so I can lay my seat out and get some badly needed sleep. I'm looking forward to getting home so I can see the wife and kids. Only 14 hours and I'll be home :)

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Sweden Trip Day 2 Pictures


Since I was at Saab almost all day today I didn't get a chance to wonder around the town and take pictures today. I did neglect to update the rest of my city pictures from yesturday though so I guess I can get credit for a blog update even though the pictures are a day late ;) The picture I've attached to the blog is a sign I saw outside of a store in downtown Linkoping and of course being an idiot amercian I had to take a picture. I found out today that "fart" in Swedish means "speed" so the sign makes sense but in English it's pretty funny ;)

http://picasaweb.google.com/lvanoort/SwedenPicturesDay2#

Am I Staying In Ikea


When I first got to Sweden I walked into my hotel room and I had a bit of dejevu. I knew that I had been in a similar room in the past but couldn't quite place it. Then finally it hit me, my room looks like it is right out of the Ikea showroom. I had forgotten then Ikea was a Swedish owned retail store and I have to tell you my hotel room looks just like it. I've uploaded some pics so you can see for yourself.


Monday, September 22, 2008

More Sweden Pics

Here are some pictures that Tony has taken while we've been in Sweden. Some of these pictures include more images of me.

http://picasaweb.google.com/tnlyne/Sweden#

Swedish Lunch

After going to Burger King last night for supper (I haven't eaten at Burger King in over a year so it did take me going to Sweden to eat at one) I thought I probably should eat traditional food for lunch today. We stop by this place, called Bar BQ. (ok, ok you got me, I thought I was going to get more american food) The menu was entirly in Swedish, with no pictures, and our waiter did't really speak English very so I took a chance and just pointed to something on the menu. Turns out it was Swedish Hash, potatos cooked with chicken and onions, it was damn good.

More Cathedral Pictures


Last night when I called home I had a request from Marshall that I take more pictures of the cathedral. So today I walked back up to the Cathedral, which I can see right outside my hotel window, to take more pictures. When you are walking around the cathedral it's amazing to think it was built without any modern machinery or tools. Now it did take them 300 years to build but still the enginuity of early engineers is astounding to me.
http://picasaweb.google.com/lvanoort/CathedralPictures#

Sweden Pictures Day 1

It's morning here in Sweden on the second day of the trip. We have one more day to hang out before we have to be a Saab actually doing work. I have to say that Linkoping is a very nice little city. Everyone bikes or walks everywhere and pretty much everything is within walking distance. There seems to be no such thing as the huge retail stores here, everything is the small specialty shops which is nice. There are pedestrian walkways everywhere and places just to hang out and socialize. I have to say I really enjoy this city, maybe someday I'll have to bring Jen and the boys here. It does appear to not be a major tourist destination I haven't seen any other americans here. I've asked most of people I've meet and most say they don't see many americans. I do have to say that most people here speak english fairly well so I've had no trouble communicating with anyone. I've uploaded pictures from the first day for everyone to check out.

http://picasaweb.google.com/lvanoort/SwedenTripDay1#

Sunday, September 21, 2008

Enjoying the Sights in Linkoping




After we got settled into our hotel we all decided to hit the streets of Linkoping to do a little sight seeing. We found both an old cathedral and fort built in 1200. The cathedral was very impressive Marshall would have liked it a lot because it looked just like the one in his book. After we were done there we went and toured the museum. Turns out at the museum you could dress up in old time clothes and you know me I never miss an opportunity to be a clown.

In Linkoping Sweden


After right around 12 hours of travel and losing 8 hours in the process I made it to Linkoping Sweden. Linkoping is a nice town not much bigger then Cedar Rapids. I will say one thing though it is quite a bit cooler here then it is at home. I'm stay in the Scandic right in the downtown district of Linkoping. I'll be sure to take some pictures of my afternoon exploring the city.

In Amsterdam




Well I just landed in Amsterdam and my first trip over seas. It is going to be quite the expierence I suspect. I did get special treatment at Dutch customs having a Dutch last name and all. You know "If you ain't Dutch you ain't much" ;)

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Flying First Class


Here I am on the plane flying first class. I have to say this quite the expierence, the seats are roomy, they serve champaigne, I could get used to this. I got right on the plane and the people in coach are in an hour long line ;). I may be ruined for travel now.

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Headed to Sweden

Our small group is sitting in the CR airport getting ready to head to Sweden. We fly from CR to Minneapolis to Amsterdam to Linkoping. We fly business class the whole way so it will be a treat.
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Friday, September 19, 2008

Supper at the Pizza Hut

Tonight after I got home from work we decided to head to the Pizza Hut for supper. While Clancey isn't quite ready to enjoy pizza he does enjoy being out in public. It was also good to go out and do something as a family before I headed off to Sweden, meatballs not chocolate, for those that are getting it mixed up with Switzerland.
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Thursday, September 18, 2008

Being Exported

Looks like I'm being exported to Sweden for a week. Today I walked into a meeting to find out that I'm being sent to Sweden for a week for business. So apperently Rockwell thinks I'm a good representative for them, I have to question their judgement ;). Seriously though I'm going to miss the family but I am happy that mema and papa will be here to help out while I'm gone.
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Tuesday, September 16, 2008

What my wife does during the day?!??


Apparently while I'm at work slaving away my wife hires male strippers to stand on top of our tree in the back yard and take their clothes off. She told me she had the tree cut down because she was afraid it would fall on the house during the winter but now I know the truth ,it was meant to be a stage for her men. I have to wonder what the neighbors think while this is going on ;)

Monday, September 15, 2008

Cutting Down the Big Tree

In an effort to avoid getting our house crushed this winter by our huge tree, we're having it cut down. They are going to leave the stump for a treehouse for Marshall and Clancey so we will have some remnant of the tree left. It's sad to see it go being it is so old and big but it will be nice to not have the worry.

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Saturday, September 13, 2008

Good Ducks Eat

Marshall has been seriously talking about the restaurant he wants to open. Today he is working on his menu but he did say he had to get the plan complete before he could open the business. He says he has to paint, fix the windows, and fix the inside before it will be ready. His plan is to have open while he is still 4 so he has a lot to get done in the next few months. ;)
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Clancey Learns to Drive

Clancey and Marshall hatched a plan to let him take the car out for a spin. Clancey crashed into a lor of stuff ;)
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Friday, September 12, 2008

Getting my M Dot

You can hardly finish an Ironman without getting an M Dot. So this afternoon I spent some time at Neon Dragon Tattoo Parlor getting my ink.
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Wednesday, September 10, 2008

More Bathtime Fun

Clancey really loves to sit in the tub and splash. By the time he gets out of the tub mommy is generally soaked from head to toe.
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Monday, September 08, 2008

Ironman Finish Line Picture


Awards Banquet

After one the hardest and greatest days of my life today is the awards banquet. It's so great to just relax and be part of the new group of Ironman inductees. After this I have no doubt that there nothing I can't accomplish if I put my mind to it.
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The Ironman Expierence

Yesturday was probably the hardest day of my life. Both the bike and the run nearly doubled the longest distance I had ever gone it a single day. And the day was 13 hours longer then I had ever continuously worked out for in my life. There really was only one time that I considered dropping out of the race and that was mile 65 of the bike. My legs were cramping so bad I could barely climb gently rolling hills. It is also very tough to head around again on the bike when so many people are headed to town.

Most people say that the marathon is the toughest part of the Ironman I whole heartedly disagree. Now granted I wasn't very fast on any portion of the race but the marathon was the easiest part of the day for me. I would have to say the bike is the toughest event in the Ironman. Although I do have to say I am not a biker either.

Bottom line is I personally think anyone in reasonably good shape can finish the an Ironman. Now, granted, you will be slow and barely make the cuts but you can finish. My training plan included a week training regiman of around 6-8 hours a week. So I was by no means in "Ironman" shape but the finisher T-shirt is the same color for the people who finish at the very end as the people who finish up front. The key to finishing the Ironman is working through those tough time when you really feel like quitting and taking care of yourself all day. I said to someone before this race that I really didn't think the Ironman was really about fitness and stand by that comment. Obviously fitness helps but you can be an nearly any physical condition if you can just "gut" it out when the times get tough.

Sunday, September 07, 2008

LEVI IS AN IRONMAN!!!!!!!

Sixteen hours and thirty minutes of nonstop effort and HE MADE IT!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
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The long road home

Mike and I just caught a glimpse of levi as he rounded the bend toward his second lap of the marathon. I ran alongside for a block and got an update. At mile 65 of the bike he thought he was done....his legs cramped up and he fell off the bike. But u all know Levi...he got back on the bike....and now we're less than 13 miles from having an I3 Ironman in the family!!!!!! He just needs to maintain a 3.5 mile per hour pace to finish!!!!
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Relief

I can't begin to tell the anxiety that goes along with the ironman.....anxiety for the athletes AND families. Levi came through Verona a tad after 4 and the cutoff is 4:30. I worried about him until I saw him....not knowing if he was still riding or hurt or had bike troubles. I can't wait to see him at the finish line!!!!!!!
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He made the cutoff!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

On to the run
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Halfway to being an Ironman!!!!!

Levi looked great after finishing the first half of the bike!! Michelle and I cheered him on as he zoomed past. He was smiling and gave us a wave.
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Verona

I found my way to Verona! The pros are going through right now and are starting their second loop. It will be a bit before I see Levi.
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Finally on my way to Verona

Ironman is about a long swim long bike long run and LONG LINES!!:-)
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Headed for the bike

Still looking fresh in swim to bike transition.....now can anyone tell me where the heck to get on the verona bike bus!!?? :-)
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He's out of the water!!!!

The leg of the race that worried Levi the most is finished!!!! He was smiling and looking good!
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Start

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Ready to go

This is jen reporting....as u can see levi is focused and ready....wow can the time already b here?
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The Water

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On our way

We're on the bus, ready to start this crazy adventure!
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Race Day

Well today is finally the day. After all of those training sessions for the last year in 3 hours the gun goes off. I have to say I don't think I slept much last night all iof my dreams were centered around my various anxieties about the race today. I have to say I'm ready to go.
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Saturday, September 06, 2008

Resting the Rest of the Day

The rest of the day is going to be spent hydrating and resting in preparation for my race tomorrow. My left knee is a tad bit sore sore I hope it can hold out through tomorrow. It's going to be cold and rainy tomorrow so the warmest part of the day may actually be the swim. Let's just hope the downpours stay to minimum. I can't wait to get started and I certainly can't wait until I cross the finish line :)
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Bike Transition Area

Here is my bike in the bike transition area. I have to say I am feeling a bit out classed with my borrowed bike eith no airo bars but its really to late to worry about that now. All I need to focus on is using my chariot for make the cuts. Cut times are 56 miles at 1:30 and 112 miles by 5:30. Assuming things go all right I should make those.
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Setting up Transition

Less then 24 hours until the cannon goes off for the start of the ironman. Today is spent setting up all of the stuff for transition. It is quite a hectic day. I feel ready but I'm nervous.
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Friday, September 05, 2008

Ironman Welcome Dinner

They are amazingly efficient at getting people out of crazy long lines and into the banquet hall. I thought for sure it would take an hour or better to get in. It only took 5 minutes.
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Ironman Line

Not only do Ironmen go a crazy long distance during the competion they also form crazy long lines.
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View of the Swim Course

Here's a picture I took from the top of monona terrace of the swim course.
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Taking in the Ironman Expo

Today I'm relaxing and taking in that which is Ironman. It's going to be hard to wait another full day until the race starts.
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Morning Swim

This morning I got out into Lake Monona for the first time and it went well. The swim in the murky green water wasn't as intimidating as I thought it would be. Now granted there also wasn't 2500 people in the water kicking me and swimming over the top of me but I do have to say that I'm a little less nervous now. I do have to issue one complaint about downtown Madison though there is absolutely now where to park.
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Thursday, September 04, 2008

Levi and Mike Eat Mexican

Mike and I decided to hit the mexican resturant across from his house for supper, proper ironman food ;).
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The Swim Course

Here's a picture of the swim course start. Sunday morning 2500 people will all be in the water for a mass start. Let me tell you it is quite a sight to behold. Go to www.ironmanwisconsin.com for pics from previous years starts.
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Number 558

Well I'm signed into the Ironman and I'm number 558. I'm glad I came up a day earlier then everyone else because there were absolutly no lines. Now is just a whole lot of waiting around until the whistle blows at 7 am on sunday. I'm rather nervous but I feel ready. I will finish this race!

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Tuesday, September 02, 2008

First Day of Preschool

Well the summer is officially over and Marsh is headed back to preschool today. Marsh is just about beside himself with excitement. He has been running around the house singing and dancing just jonesing to head out the door. Let's hope he stays this excited about school.
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Monday, September 01, 2008

Labor Day Lunch at Raine's

We decided to head down to Iowa City to grill out with Raine. We also got the opportunity to meet Raine's new dog Hank. Raine has never been a dog person so it is surprising that she got a dog. He's a nice little dog though so they are a good match. Clancey seemed to like him too, since he chased him around the whole time while he wasn't getting into touble getting into everything he shouldn't.
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