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*sigh*

You may remember my most recent running shoe conundrum….. if you can’t bring yourself to read the blather, here’s the nutshell: My Vibram Five Finger Bikilas got a hole, and it was time to replace. I hemmed and hawed, eventually getting two new pairs; the See Ya Lses and the KMD Sport Lses.

Back in March, I had posted that the See Ya Lses were not wearing as well as I hoped, and to stay tuned. So. Here we are. :/

Much to my dismay, I have had to change to my backup pair after only 500ish miles. I’m disappointed. I was only about 100 miles in when, after washing, one of the toe pockets was sporting a small tear. As time progressed, the hole got bigger. But I still ran.

My last visit to Hunny, I seriously debated about whether or not to take my backup pair, leaning heavily to leaving them home. Boy, was I glad I took them! I don’t know if it was a combo of the hilly terrain and temperature, or just the high road heat, but they are trashed. My last day, the one toe was all bruised, not to mention black from the road grime. BOOOOO! 😦 😦 😦

VFF1

VFF2

VFF3

VFF4

VFF5

Since I had to retire the See Ya Lses, I’ve moved into the KMD Sport Lses. It’s a heavier shoe, which I could do without. But if it wears better, it might end up being ok. I’m hoping the toe pockets will stretch a wee bit, because a few toes hit the end more than I’d like.

Anyhow. That’s that, and now I know.

Bottom line= ok if you don’t mind replacing your shoes earlier than you want to. Lightweight= yes. Durable= not really. Would I buy again= probably not. I find myself really wishing they hadn’t changed the Bikilas…… meh.

At least Queen rocks on {even though Freddie can never be replaced!}!

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2014


Alrighty then. Clearly, I’ve been slacking. It seems the combination of farm life and absent Hunny kills my motivation for writing. Here’s my lame attempt to get sort of caught up….

My mileage stunk for last year. I was trying to bribe myself to finish the painting before I allowed myself to run. {snort) At some point, I said, “Screw it!”

Last year, I only managed to run 332.21 miles. Seeing at I’m already at 108 and some change for this year {which is still sort of dismal} you can see that running was more or less ‘meh’ last year.

And I was dealing with some leg issues. Seemed like I’d get over one sore spot and find I had another. I finally broke down and got some compression calf sleeves, which really seems to have been a huge help. Hopefully, I can ditch them completely before summer hits, because I HATE HEAT.

You may remember that I logged over 1,400 miles on my previous pair of VFFs and had to get a new pair. I’ve gotten just over 304 miles on the new pair, and they are not wearing nearly as well as my others.

While I have the spare pair, they are heavier. Heading into the heat of the summer leaves me wondering if the See Ya Lses will get me through so I don’t have to wear the others when it’s hot. We’ll see. I’d really rather not have to order another new pair, seeing as the Vibram website got hacked and my information was compromised. {Yes, I know there are other places to buy them; I just always start there- and they were on sale!}

Not only are the soles starting to wear, but several months ago, one of the toes got a small hole in between the toes. I don’t think these are nearly as well made as the Bikilas. If they ever go back to the original sole {and not the beefed up one for transitioning folks}, I would be inclined to buy the Bikilas again.


Did I mention I had to get new ear buds? AGAIN?! If memory serves, this was right around the time I had to get new shoes, so that piece of stunning news might have gotten lost in the shuffle.

Anyhow. You know I’m seriously picky about what goes in my ears when I run…… I was nearly distraught when I discovered they no longer were offering my Nike Vapor ear buds. I nearly gave up running. *sigh*

But, because I am a trooper and decided I needed to deal with this horrible, life-altering news, I bit the bullet and got myself a pair of YurBuds. Because I was a former behind-the-ear fan, I got the ones that go behind the ear. You are shocked, I know.  focus-100-for-women

Did you see that ^^^^^ there? You know, that part where I said a FORMER fan? What changed my mind?

The YurBuds. I hate the over-the-ear model. HATE. THEM.

Sure, they swivel. But they also come completely apart. And trying to get them in and over the ear without popping them off requires a mirror and tweaking, etc. Seriously? I want to put them in and GO.

What I have discovered, however, is that I don’t need the over-the-ear feature. Nope. I don’t. YurBuds actually stay in the ear like they are supposed to, so the next pair will not have that boat anchor feature. Besides that issue and the one ear piece cover trying to come off all the time, I am actually quite impressed with them. They are ok. And they actually don’t fall out, which is good.

Fortunately, I don’t need to use them a whole lot, courtesy of my new treadmill, which has an mp3 port. My old one finally died after almost 20 years and thousands of miles. Given how much it rains here and that summer is coming {eventually}, I knew it was time to pony up and make that investment. I don’t have a non-blurry picture of this stunning piece of equipment, but I found a good NordicTrac with the same size motor as my old one. Motor size does matter, kids. Don’t say I didn’t warn you.

Lest you think all I’ve been doing while non-writing has been avoiding painting and running, I will let you know right now, mister, that I HAVE NOT. Well, ok, I have been avoiding painting. BUT. I’ve done a lot of knitting. And, I have more peeps. 😀

So, let’s recap. Running in 2014 was pretty sucky. Not a total loss, but this year will be better in that regard. Unless my man comes home, it will likely be as stressful. I am not a good single parent, I’ll tell you. But running will be better, and darn it, there really is stuff outside that has to get painted soon, nevermind everything inside……. stay tuned. Or don’t. 😆

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You may recall that it was time for me to get new running shoes….. I really don’t like it when I go to replace something I love only to find out it’s no longer available and things have changed. BOOOO!

So I ordered not one, but two pairs of Vibram Five Fingers shoes. I had read reviews on See Ya Lses seeyalsesthat indicated they weren’t the best for cold weather running. To cover my bases, I also ordered the KMD Lses.

Let me just say that the US sizing is not accurate. I much prefer the UK sizing where your foot is actually measured. If you’re a girl in the US, you will no doubt know that shoes {and jeans, and tops, etc etc} vary wildly depending on shoe. It would have been nice to have had the option to order the UK sizing like before.

When the See Ya Lses arrived, they were entirely too big. They are shaped differently, too, which made me worry about the higher heel digging into my Achille’s. I sent them back.

In the mean time, the KMD Lses arrived, so I wasn’t totally dead in the water. I got 15 miles on them before the other pair arrived in the right size. kmdsportlsKMDs were fine. The toe pockets seemed a bit snug, but I’m sure they will stretch out just fine. I love the lower, padded heel. I think I prefer this lace system over the See Ya Lses. They also feel like they have a thicker sole, which is good to keep in mind.

I’ve been running pretty regularly in the See Ya Lses, and have around 50 miles on them. The toe pockets are looser. The second time I wore them, I ended up with a bloody toe. There must have been something in that toe pocket, because after that, I had no issues running in them. I’m not sure I’m real keen on the lace system- these are actually tied like regular shoes. It doesn’t seem to be any wider than the KMD LSes’ lace system.

My concern about the shape of the fabric on the heel to this point is not a real issue. I can feel it on the back of my foot, but the suede is actually pretty soft. The color on mine does bleed, but it washes right off.

The one thing I really like about both is the insole is yellow. The white insole of the Bikilas always bothered me because it never really came clean with washing. Both will wear better in that regard, I think. I also appreciate that they aren’t removable, like my older Komodosport Lses are. I always worry that they’ll come out when washing and then never go back in the right way. It hasn’t happened yet, but I don’t wear them the same as I do the others.

I am really eager to get back outside, but I do have to say I still dread having to weave through the gravel. Even with new shoes that aren’t worn as much, I am NOT loving running on rocks. If things stay calmer around here, I’ll give it a shot. {As it turns out, both of the bulls are still loose– will update on that deal in a bit.}

Anyhow. For what it’s worth, I’m giving them both a total thumbs up because I’m on the road again……………

[youtube:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Gdlyi5mckg0%5D

 

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I’ve been hearing Sarah Brightman {with Andrea Bocelli} in my head this last week; ya know, because life is a soundtrack and all that jazz.

If you’ve been reading along, you’ll remember that I hate shopping.  I hate shopping so much I’m seriously thinking about making a category, just so y’all can kvetch with me. Erg.

So anyhow.

June of 2011 brought me to a critical point in my decades of running when, thanks to my chronic illness{s} and my plantar fasciitis, I realized something serious needed to change if I was going to not only walk without pain, but continue running. I spent a boatload of time researching, as I do with all things. I am not prone to leaping into fads, and do what I can to avoid them. By the time I got around to ordering my hobbit feet,  aka Vibram Five Finger Bikilas, I was pretty much at my wits end, and at the end of options to try. Bikila VFFs

I knew there would be a period of time to transition into them full time, which I wrote about. I also promised periodic updates, which I managed to keep up with up to the point we moved. My last post about my VFFs was in May of 2012, when I hit 1,000 miles. I am sad to say, my running tanked when we moved. It was sporadic at best, and it’s taken me over 2 years to log close to another 500 miles. 😯

There has been SO much to do on the farm; not just chickens and horses, but painting the whole house, including doors, windows, and all the miles of moldings. I haven’t gotten a whole lot finished, but I did manage to get the really bad blood spatter painted over. I still have curtains to make for every room but one. And that’s just inside. I have a ton to paint outside, too.u

With Hunny away for work and me basically single-parenting day-to-day, I reached a point where it was time to get back to my running. In many ways, it’s been really tough to have to build my mileage back up. I started at 4 miles and worked my way back up to 5 miles {and some change}. Hah!

I think I’ll prolly have to hold steady through the summer, unless it cools off, because wow. I left late this morning at 7:15 and it was 80 degrees when I got home, with a 90 something % humidity. Coming from the desert, the humidity while running takes some getting used to. I make a point to leave early, but overslept today.

Over the course of the past week, I’ve noticed spots on the bottom of my shoes getting really thin. I am not a fan of gravel, which my road in either direction is, for nearly 1/2 mile in the one direction I regularly go. I had been looking online periodically for my next shoe, and have been extremely disappointed to see that my beloved Bikilas are not made any more. They have the Bikila Lses, which have laces. And then they have the Bikila EVOs, which have a thicker sole and are for folks transitioning into minimalist running shoes. Ugh, ugh, ugh.

I briefly thought about turning my Komodosport LSes KomodosportLS into my running shoes, but honestly, I’d rather save them for wearing for the rare occasions I’m not wearing flip flops or boots.

In a mad dash, I got online and ordered what I could find that looked like it would work. I ordered the See Ya Lses from the Vibram website. I was really excited when the See Ya Lses came today. I put them on, and then got really disappointed. seeyalses

Vibram has changed their US sizing. Instead of measuring your foot as before, now they ask you for your shoe size. I don’t know about you, but I notice that with traditional shoes, like clothes, the size is variable to the shoe. Frustrating! 😡

They are too big. Like, by at least a size. I tried them on and wore them around the house. Not only are they too long, but they are too wide. Any Vibram that has the laces are made for slightly wider feet, which I have, but the fit on these was just plain wonky.

Perhaps the most concerning feature was the heel. If you look at the pictures, you can see how the heels on the See Yas are pointy. That part right there is much taller, and digs into the back of my Achilles. I had them on for not even an hour and had a pressure mark on the back of my foot when I took them off. My plan is to return them for a smaller size and see if the right size makes a difference in that part of the fit.

Another thing I had read in some of the reviews, is that because they’re largly mesh {aka, “breathable;” and  is hard to see from these pictures, but is pretty clear on Zappos.com}, folks have said they are not good for winter running unless you wear socks. And we all know what my sock situation is like!

Earlier this eveing, I spent several hours online looking for other Vibram models; thus, my conundrum. I went back to the Vibram website to see what else they had. Right now it’s slim pickins’ because they just had a huge sale and are out of stock on numerous models. After hunting for hours, I ordered another pair from Zappos.

The Vibram KMD Sport Lses are, as near as I can figure, the updated version of the Komodo Sport Lses. kmdsportls How ironic is that?! I figure, if I still don’t like the fit of the See Ya Lses, I can send them back. If I like them, I can wear the KMDs during the colder months if I don’t want to wear socks. At the very least, they have the notched heel like I’m used to, with a bit of cushioning there, too. And, if I love the See Ya Lses, I can hang onto the KMDs and wear them when the others need to be replaced.

Of additional concern are the reviews that say all of these models wear out quickly. We’ll see.

My original Bikilas, as I mentioned, have lasted just over 1,425 miles. By the time the others get here, it will be close to or over 1,500.

1426miles.2

 

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The foot bed in the right shoe has started to rip, and in that same shoe, the whole foot bed is wrinkly because the adhesive is shot. The upside is that it didn’t really bother me. Two days ago, I ran the last mile with what I thought was a pebble in one of the toes, only to discover it was actually a little black beetle that was still alive!

And then today, the gravel got me hard in the middle of my foot.  rockSeeing as that is not part of the foot that generally comes into hard contact with the road, you can tell I was distracted by one of the dogs who I to run back to the house because, as a border collie, she wants to run circles around the cars that pass us on the road. :/

So, as much as I hate to, it’s time to say goodbye. I am hopeful that I actually can find another pair of VFFs that I like as well, and is as well made. There is something really fantastic about not having to change out your running shoes every 300 miles!

Here’s also hoping I can get this song unstuck from my head…. 😆

 

[youtube:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=khznWuH3VTs%5D

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Yep. I think I might be certifiable. chickencuckoo

I spent yesterday in bed. I am pretty sure old people like me are not made to bounce off the ground. I’m going to be really bruised, but the upside is that I didn’t break a collar-bone or an arm or a leg or my spine.

I can say that not only am I not cut out for getting bucked off horses, I may not even be cut out to ride them. We’ll see.

We did a change in strategy over the weekend. I just didn’t have it in me yesterday to fight.

So, because I didn’t sleep last night worth a hill o’ beans because I was too sore, I did what most people would assume I would do: I went for a run.

After nearly 6 months off, I figured I was so pea pickin’ sore that I might as well tackle it now, so the new soreness will be absorbed by the stuff that’s already here. I’m pretty sure the turkeys across the road could have lapped me had they wanted to, as slowly as I was going.

Nonetheless, I got 3 miles in. While I’ve had a have a hard time lifting my arms the last two days, I figured my legs should be ok.  Any new aches I’m going to get will just have to join the others……………

Ya. Pretty sure I’m crazy. 😯

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Yep. I am. Now I’ve said it out loud and you know.

I really didn’t intend to end up like this. I’m hoping I don’t stay this way for long, either.

I have entirely too much do and I’m feeling overwhelmed.

I’m feeling overwhelmed by the amount of painting to be done. I’m overwhelmed by the amount of blood spatter in this house. Seriously. {Kids, this is a prime example of why not to do drugs- you’ll lose your house and the new owners will be totally grossed out when they clean and paint it to make it livable……..}

I haven’t really run since we left. I feel like it’s a guilty pleasure that I can’t allow myself to indulge in when I have so much other stuff that needs to get done.

Honestly, I’d be happy to stay curled up with a book and look out the windows……

I did, however, make my son some curtains. He was tired of having to change his clothes in the closet because he didn’t have curtains. At some point, I’ll take pictures of the whole room, once I get the last set of curtains made and he’s gotten it painted. In the meantime, here they are:

curtains3

curtains2

curtains1

You may remember me complaining about the bird nesting happening when I was making my girls their sundresses last spring. I’m glad I didn’t pitch my machine. It worked just fine. Hmmph. I’ll have to diddle with it some more when I get back to the dresses.

Once we get things painted, I am not sure how much time I’ll have to be online. Life is changing, and in a really good way.

Have you ever been somewhere where you know that’s where you were meant to be? Like deep down in your soul you knew you were where God wanted you to be?

Ya. It’s like that here. If I have to be buried somewhere, I’m changing my mind. I’ll forgo Tin Cup, Co, for being buried on the farm here somewhere. {Which is legal here, too- one of these days, I’ll write about that, because it’s fascinating!}

Anyhow. What’s taking up my time? Life is taking up my time; mostly in the form of creatures.

We had been here for about a week before we realized that the 5 horses in our front yard were only being fed by neighbors, sporadically. And they had no water.  th_rant

You can see where I’m going with this…… not only are we feeding them, we’re rehabing the mama horse that was near death from starvation. Turns out, she’s a champion barrel horse. As in, big $$$$$. Out of the 5, she’s the only one saddle broke{n}, so we’re starting with her.

She’s an {American} Quarter Horse. There’s another out there that we know he paid $10,000 for and never broke. Ya. She’s an American Saddlebred- you know, the high-stepping show horses? Ya. 😯 Her son is a Saddlebred as well, and then the foal {colt} and the filly are both a Quarter Horse/Saddlebred mix. Boo.

One of these days, I’ll write the whole thing up, with pictures. Mama is now as happy as a clam out there, with her blanket on and in a separate pen so she can eat undisturbed. Baby is eating solids and is weaning, so that’s good.

Besides the painting (seriously, I have gotten two bathrooms finished, and that’s it- while 12 ft ceilings with crown molding is beautiful, it’s a pain to paint…..), we’ve got chickens to set up for, in addition to our own horses {yes, you’re reading that right} and still get things unpacked.

Kitchen appliances came. Turns out, the ovens are too tall, so the cabinet guy needs to come back out. I didn’t get any Christmas baking done. I’m hoping he can come and get that done so I can get some of my breads made soon.

There are SO many loose ends at this point. I lose an entire day going into town for shopping. So far, I haven’t been able to not make two trips in every week, because there is always something urgently needed. Yesterday, it was horse food. Today, it’s groceries, since the big winter storm blew through and it was pouring rain so I just got horse food and came back home before the worst of it hit.

There’s a schedule to keep to, too. Horses are fed at 8 am and 5pm; mama gets lunch as well until she’s gained the last 300 lbs; and most days, I take the girls to feed over at our “neighbors” house in exchange for their weekly riding lessons.

And then, there is the steady stream of visitors. I’ve decided that I’m going to give it another month, and then after that point, we’re going to start handing out paint rollers to visitors. 😀 We absolutely LOVE the company, but it’s not conducive to me getting the painting done.

On top of all of this, we’ve got a new puppy. That means someone needs to supervise her until we can count on her to go to the door every time she needs out. I had no plans for more pets, of course, but when a friend posted a picture on FB of a purebred border collie pup who was being given away because as the runt, she was going to be too small to work with cattle, I couldn’t say no. 😀

Big dog, you may recall, is a{blonde/red merle} border collie as well, so we are very familiar with the breed. Had this been any other breed, I would have passed, because we don’t have time right now to deal with stubborn doggies {like little dog, for example, who we LOVE to bits and pieces, but is really quite stubborn :lol:}.

But, having lost out kitty a month ago, and seeing her cuteness, I couldn’t resist. So, here is our little Oreo.  oreo1

When I can get out of my slacker mode and get more painting done, I’ll be back to write some more. In the meantime, don’t forget me! 😀

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That’s what I keep thinking. Yesterday, I was pretty much hating things.

Today? Not so much. Not everything sucks. 😀

I’m consciously making a point to remind myself of specific things to be grateful for.

Let’s see….. you know about the awning crashing down on us in the wee hours of the morning. It took me long enough {and really, this was because I needed some time to fortify myself for bad news}, but I finally got off my rear and called insurance.

I was very pleasantly surprised. Because of our ‘vanishing deductible’ and lack of claims, it’s going to be 100% replaced with $0 out-of-pocket. Yay!

I have heard horror stories about Progressive insurance, but let me say this: I have *never* had an issue with them. We’ve had a total of 3 claims in the last 11 years we’ve been insured with them. 2 have been RV claims; the other for my truck when we had a major storm blow through.

They had their CAT adjuster come out, and within something like a week, we had a check in hand for damage on the trailer. The truck they arranged for and we paid our deductible and that was that. These claims were *considerably* easier to deal with than with the home owner’s insurance to replace the roof. {That was the year where most everyone in town got a new roof- really!}

So, that’s a good thing. The lady I talked to said it would take about 2 weeks. They’ll order the parts, drop-ship them here, and then send out a mobile unit so we don’t even have to pack up and take it to them. In my opinion, you can’t ask for better service!

And, each time I talked to someone, the first thing they asked was “Is everyone ok? Did anyone get injured?” And- it was like they really actually were interested in the answer, and then relieved when I told them we were all inside sleeping and were ok.

So, that was good. I spent the bulk of last week on the phone and computer gathering information. That work, combined with the rain, meant no running at all, which never helps my mood. You don’t know how dependant you are on those good endorphins until you don’t get them for a while.

A cold front blew in yesterday. {I’ve heard there is snow in Denver already!} It’s deliciously nippy, and I can’t wait to get out and run. I’m keeping my fingers crossed that the rain will hold off long enough for me to get some kind of run in. If not, I need to head back into town for- you guessed it- milk. *sigh* I have to go regardless, but I was hoping to postpone that until this afternoon.

Another thing to figure out is Halloween. The little girls want to go trick-or-treating, but not only do I not know where to take them, the thought of buying costumes and then having to store them afterwards is slightly irritating.

We brought our fiberoptic witch, but alas, I have no idea where to put her. Nonetheless, she needs to come out and spread some cheer. I need a plug, though, and those are scarce. I figure, if we have camped during Christmas and had a lighted tree, I should be able to accommodate a witch. 😆

Anyhow. That’s my ramble for this morning.

Because life is a soundtrack, and honestly, I’m tired of it being stuck in my head, I’d like to share with you a classic we’re probably all always tired of hearing: Tomorrow, courtesy of the show Annie. 😆

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Yop62wQH498%5D

If that’s not your cup of tea, listen to this version, as done on Korea’s Got Talent. 😀

[youtube:http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wA78bIG3ogI%5D

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