Sunday, July 29, 2012

Fun Golfing

After my 100 mile hammer fest in Wisconsin, today was a day off which meant the boys and I headed over to Lowden to hit the links. Last time we came we only played 9 but today I thought we would give a whole 18 a try. Before we for there I stopped at the gas station and let them each pick out a pop as a treat for spending the next 4 hours golfing. I let Clancey do most of the cart driving at the course which keeps him pretty entertained, even though he does crash into stuff from time to time. Marshall likes to get out and hit the ball when we get close enough to the hole. We had a really fun day together, even though I was golfing like total crap. Any day spent in the golf course with the kids is a good day.


Saturday, July 28, 2012

Training In Madison

Today I drove up to Madison to ride the Ironman course for the second time this year. Today I was riding with a friend who lives and breathes Ironman training so it was a hammer fest. When Ironman competitors get together there is no such thing as an easy ride. You start saying its going to be an easy ride but it doesn't take long until someone starts pushing the pace. We got about 10 miles in when we started going crazy. We ended up pushing around 210-220 watts for 100 miles. For those who don't ride trust me when I tell you that is hammering it. Once again some jerk in a Lexus buzzed us probably got within 8 inches of us on an entirely empty rode. I'll be glad when I'm done training for the year because I have been buzzed on my last two rides and it is a bit unnerving when it happens. Just like everyone I get frustrated when I get stuck behind bikers, especially when there are hundreds of us on the rode, but people need to understand if they hit me they could kill me. Experiences like that are the reason I like to train indoors. Anyways now that im done training its time for a shower and large amounts of calories, im thinking ribs. ;-)

Headed To Madison

For the second time this year I'm making the early morning trip up to madison to ride the bike course. There is another training camp so I expect the roads to be full of bikers today. The plan for today is to ride two loops of the bike course and then follow it up by a 5 to 6 mile run. Should be a fun but tiring day.

Headed To Madison

For the second time this year I'm making the early morning trip up to madison to ride the bike course. There is another training camp so I expect the roads to be full of bikers today. The plan for today is to ride two loops of the bike course and then follow it up by a 5 to 6 mile run. Should be a fun but tiring day.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Boy Night

This afternoon I took off from work a couple hours early so I could go to Iowa City to pick Marshall up from college and Jen could have a girls night. On the way home the boys and I stopped at Dairy Queen to get some supper and ice cream. After this in not sure what the plan is but I'm sure we can think of something.

Sunday, July 22, 2012

McDonald's Play Area

After we got done at the golf course we headed over to DeWitt to grab some lunch. I wasn't planning on finding a play area but it just so happened that they had one and it wasn't full of every local hee haw kid in the town. In fact it was empty so the boys had the whole place to themselves. I'm not sure I'm going to be able to convince the boys to leave because they are having too much fun. So far we have had a great day.

Golfing With The Boys

This morning Jen had to head out to Miss Effie's farm to help with a library fund raising event so that meant the boys and I had the day to ourselves. With a full day I thought it would be fun to take them out for their first round of golf. Last time I took someone out I took them to the hardest golf course in the area, well this time I took them to Lowden one of the easier courses. At first Clancey didn't want to go but once I told him he could drive the cart he was in. He only had one accident, drove us through a pine tree, so he did pretty good. Both of the boys had a great time golfing and want go back soon.

Saturday, July 21, 2012

50 Days Until Ironman

Its hard to believe but as if today I am only 50 days away from my next Ironman. After my failure to finish at St George in May I'm really looking forward to redeeming myself at Wisconsin. So far my training is going well and I feel confident in my ability to PR this year in Wisconsin. This morning I got up and did a 60 mile ride before the boys and I went out on our trip. The ride went well except for the jerk who buzzed me and ran a car off the road right outside of Clarence. Tomorrow I'm planning to do a 40 mile ride and possibly a short 4-5 mile run after.

Boy Day

With Clancey back home from his week with mema and papa we decided to give Jen some time to work on signs and head out for a boy day. Since Jen is a not a big fan of Wild wood we decided it would be a good day to head down and have a meat filled lunch. After this the plan is to go play a couple rounds of bowling, maybe hit some golf balls and then head for home.

Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Morning Training

For months during the winter when training first starts you are slogging away in the cold dark basement. At that point the novelty of getting back into training is alive and well and it isn't so bad. About late February early March though the constant indoor training does start to take its toll and you yearn to get outside. At that point you think its never going to come and you continue to train in the basement but mornings like today are what make it all worth it. I got up and 5:30 it was nearly perfect weather out, 71 degrees, somewhat humid, no wind and not a cloud in the sky. About a half mile into my ride I was taking it all in and decided I had to take a picture of the sun rising. You don't really get many mornings like this so it really deserved to be captured.

Jen and Her Baby

I'm sure I've posted about a billion of these pictures but I can't resist posting another one. The dog, who was originally going to be for the kids, has pretty much morphed into Jens new baby. The dog constantly begs her to pick him up, which of course Jen does, and wants to be carried around. As you can see Jen has even adopted the butt on the hip carry technique that you would use with a real kid.

First Day Of CHESS

Yesterday was Marshall first day doing the CHESS program at the Belin and Blank Center for Gifted Children.  After pouring over the class in Marshall's very analytical way he decided that he wanted to do the class on colonizing Mars.  When he first signed up he was really excited to get to do it but early in the week Marshall was pretty nervous and was acting like he didn't really want to do it anymore.  Jen talked to him about it in the way only moms can over the past few days and got him excited about it again.  Well after doing the first day of class he had a blast and couldn't wait to go back today.  In fact he told us that he even made a friend on the first day.  I think it is probably just nice for him to get to be around other kids that are like himself.  It's not like he is an outcast at school but being so far ahead of this class the teacher has him always going off and doing a lot of stuff by himself which does set him apart from the other kids.  Today Marshall was telling us that they are going to build a terarrium in a 2 liter pop bottle which should be pretty fun. 

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Clancey Headed With Mema and Papa

With next week being Marshall's first week of college mema and papa thought it would be a good week to take Clancey. This will be the first time that Clancey has ever went to mema and papa's without Marshall being with him. They are planning to drive up to Deluth Minnesota for a small vacation and to see all the boats the float through. Hopefully Clancey follows the rules and doesn't get homesick without his brother.

Awesome Ride

This morning I headed out on my weekend long ride and was worried about how it would go. Yesterday I was up at 5:30 to go golf 18 holes in a best ball tournament which took about 5 hours by the time it was all said and done. When I got home about 2 the whole family piled in the car to head to the pool. Before I could play with the boys I headed into the indoor pool to get a 2000 meter swim in. When I got done there I headed outside and played with the kids in the outdoor pool until nearly 6. When we got home we put the kids in the bed and settled down in our chairs to relax well recently Jen and I got addicted to Words With Friends and ended up playing that until nearly midnight. All that meant this morning I was tired as hell when the alarm went off at 5:30 am. Much to my surprise I managed to drag myself out of bed and get on the road by 7 am. I don't know what it was but I was feeling it today. I averaged 19.8 MPH over a 60 mile ride and cut 20 minutes off my best time for this route and when I got done I could have easily went further. With Ironman only 56 days away I'm feeling like my preparation is going well and I should PR Wisconsin.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

At The Pool

After spending the morning golfing in a memorial tournament with friends I got home and we all headed to the pool. I got a mile swim in and then headed to the outdoor pool to swim with the kids. Both of the boys went down the water slide for the first time and had a great time. I'm probably going to be going up and down the slide all day now. Not sure how long we're going to stay but we sure are having a good time now.

Sunday, July 08, 2012

Golf Today

Today I decided to take Jen out for her first round of golf and Cedar Valley golf just south of Tipton. This golf course is known as the Badlands which should have been a warning that neither Jen or I were ready to play the course but being a naive new golfer I didn't know any better. We planned on only playing nine holes so I thought it would be a good idea to walk the course. When I told the front desk guy that he looked shocked at me and asked if i had played the golf course before. I told him I hadn't and then he told me it was really hilly and no one ever walks the course. I assured him I am a 3 time Ironman and was training for my fourth so i could handle walking a couple miles with clubs on my back. He said OK but since I was walking the course he would give me a discount. Well it was a pretty tough walk but nothing I couldn't handle. The golf was damn hard and I was clearly not ready for a course that tough. Jen did alright considering it was her first time ever golfing. At first she had a hard time hitting the ball, just like I did the first time, but after a few pointers she started to actually contact the ball and do pretty good. Overall it was a fun day and I think Jen and I will do it more often as something we can do together. 

Saturday, July 07, 2012

Still Hot As Hell

For about a week now it has been insanely hot and today is following suit. This morning I was feeling pretty tired so instead of getting up at 5 like I planned I slept in until nearly 9 which meant it was already getting really freaking hot. With a 3 hour ride ahead of me and knowing I likely wouldn't get out the door until 11 I made a game time decision and just rode in the basement. Jen on the other hand braved the heat and headed to an auction for most of the morning. She did say that while it was hotter then hell it did keep the attendance down at the auction resulting in her getting a lot of good stuff. I myself didn't brave the outdoors until about a half hour ago and when I got in the car it said it was 107 out. They are saying the heat is going to finally break tomorrow which would be awful nice cause I'm getting sick of sleeping downstairs in the couch trying to stay cool at night.

Fancy Dinner

Last night I got home from work early so Jen and I decided to take advantage of our kid less status and go out to dinner. With it being dreadfully hot still we really didn't want to go to far but it just so happened that I new barbeque place opened up in Tipton which we decided to go check out. We were worried that it was going to be crazy busy being it is the only decent place to eat in Tipton but we were able to get right in. Jen ordered the pulled pork and I ordered the ribs. Let me tell you the the food was absolutely spectacular. The ribs rivaled those that I get at wild wood and Jens pulled pork was mighty tasty too. It is great to finally have a decent restaurant close by so we are not always in the position if having to drive an hour if we want a decent meal. I'm thinking we will be frequent visits to this new place.

Wednesday, July 04, 2012

Home

After spending the night in a crap hole motel in the middle of nowhere last night we got back on the road this morning. Since we were in the middle of nowhere and our motel didn't offer any continental breakfast we were left to hit the interstate to try and find some breakfast. We looked and looked but the fact it was a holiday kind of left the options fairly limited. We ended up driving all the way to Des Moines before we hit the machine shed for what now was more of a brunch then straight up breakfast. Once we were done there we headed for home. I'm sure glad that we were in the car today because it was insanely hot out. I have a 2:20 tee time for 18 holes and it is suppose to be 102 so I'm thinking it may get a bit hot on the course. If nothing else it should be pretty dead. Wish me luck.

Concert Over

The concert is over and we are on our way home. Being the play it by ear kind of people we are we decided to drive until we found somewhere to stay. Well what we found was the Underwood motel off the interstate just east of Council Bluffs. This place is a motel / extended stay place. Well the extended stay side looked a bit shady, large groups of people hanging outside on the front walk smoking cigarettes kinds playing in the drive at 11 pm quite the place. The motel side on the other hand didn't look horrible so we decided to give it a try. The rooms aren't that bad and it seems to be quite enough to do for the night. A little more expensive then I hoped for, for a little crappy motel but it will due for the night. Time to shower up and sleep for the drive tomorrow.

Tuesday, July 03, 2012

In The Gates

Here we are enduring the 95 degree temps to see the Avett brothers. Actually to be honest it isn't all the humid so it isn't too bad sitting out here. We have about an hour until the concert starts so Jen and I are just sitting here enjoying the evening and chatting. The people watching at these concerts is always quite interesting.

In Council Bluffs

Well after spending half the day on the road we made it to Harrahs in Council Bluffs for Jen's concert. Its 100 degrees out right now so it is going to be a scorcher for the outdoor concert. When we were coming in the door the band was on stage warming up and as you can see Jen had to stop and take it in for a bit. I told Jen that it was hot as hell and we are going to see them later so lets get in the air conditioning.

Lunch At Hickory Park

Here we are at Hickory Park for lunch after meeting mema and papa in Ames for the transfer. The boys are pretty excited to get spoiled for an entire week and we are excited to get a little adult time this week. Now we are back in the road to Council Bluffs.

On The Road

Here we are on the road to the western part of the state for Jen's concert. We are meeting mema and papa in Ames to drop the boys off for a week, going to have some lunch together at Hickory park and then we are headed to Council Bluffs. Going to be a long couple long days of driving but not as bad as the drive to St George.

Sunday, July 01, 2012

Family Pizza Night

After Marshall and I went to hit golf balls and Clancey and Jen went to see Brave in Mt Vernon, we all met at Pizza Palace for supper. I've had a really busy weekend so it was nice to just be able to sit and chat as a family. After this we are headed home to get some bathes and do some much needed relaxing.

Long Bike Ride

Since I decided to sleep in this morning I had to wait until after jen got home from church to go do my bike ride. The bad part about that was it was getting really hot by the time I got on my bike. Plus I was still kind of tired from yesterday's big day so I wasn't all that enthused to get on my bike and ride 60 miles today. The first 50 miles were too bad but the last 10 that he was really getting to me. I figure that I'm going to need to learn to ride in heat because wisconsin's weather can be anything on race day. I'm just have to be done and back in the cool house. Not sure what the plan for the rest of the afternoon is but I may take the boys out to go do something fun. If that is the plan though I better stay away from my chair.;)

Bowling

Last night after we went to the bookstore I never got a chance to blog about our big bowling adventure. At first Clancey didn't want to go to the bowling alley at all, all he wanted to do was go to the mall and play in the kid area. After a little arm twisting I managed to convince him that bowling would be fun and we should go. Turns out that was a good decision because Clancey had an absolutely great time. If fact after the first four frames of the first game Clancey had three spares and was crushing me and Marshall. I ended up pulling it out in the end but both the boys had a great time. I think they really wanted to get out of the house and do something besides trying to stay cool. I'll say this for me though after a 40 mile bike ride, 18 holes of golf and a bowling trip I was done in. In fact this morning I slept in until nearly 9am.