Sunday, June 27, 2010

A belated Fathers' Day post

We spent Fathers' Day with Ed's family in Connecticut. First we started the day off with homemade challah french toast (Elliot was very good during my quick early-morning grocery store run for bread). I got Ed an enlargement of this photo:

And also, at Ed's request, I got a year's worth of bananas for a mine-sniffing rat. :)

After breakfast, we headed down to CT for Ed's cousins' graduation party. Katie and Greg just finished high school.

Here are my guys in their matching outfits:


Aunt Liz!

Cousin Katie!

A super-fun time was had by all, and we were lucky enough to enjoy the leftovers all week.

Saturday, June 26, 2010

Training camp

I'm not complaining, but having Elliot around has made it tough to get in many miles on the fleet of bikes. Last week, I had a work-related conference to attend, Enterprise 2.0. (Excellent write-up here.) I spent way too much time figuring out the best way to get to the hotel, the Westin Boston Waterfront. All options were bad: driving, driving to Alewife/T/walk 1 mile, driving to Wilmington/commuter rail/T/T/walk 1 mile, get dropped off at bus stop/bus to Alewife/T/walk 1 mile. All were 90 minutes+. So, I decided to ride. Ed got my Redline ready for action and gave me a great route.

Here she is, many years ago in San Diego:

I went through the backroads of my town to Horn Pond (where I rode on the bike path), then on to the Mystic Valley Parkway where I learned to sprint when I was in grad school, then past a couple of places where I used to live in Medford and into Cambridge, over the Charles River by the Museum of Science, around Boston Garden, onto Congress Street past Faneuil Hall, on to Summer Street over the Fort Point Channel.

Getting back to the title: I ride so infrequently now that 4 days of 2x18-mile rides is a "training camp" these days.

I really enjoyed the ride, though it hurt to get up early enough to feed Elliot and then ride in, as I was pretty slow with the backpack and then needed to get cleaned up at the hotel. The bellhops all got to know me, as the hotel suggested that I keep my bike in the bell closet. :)

On the first day, I randomly saw Rachel walking around with her baby on my way home. We had a nice chat.

After the second day, I put a bell on my bike because of a few close calls with drivers, pedestrians, and cyclists. It really worked well on days 3 and 4.

If I go to the conference again next year, I am pretty sure I will ride again. Training camp paid off: I went on the NEBC women's ride earlier this week and was not last up Strawberry Hill or Page Hill (I should also note that I was not in the fastest group). So, progress!

Friday, June 25, 2010

Waffle Cross 3.0

I am seriously behind. This happened almost 2 weeks ago.

Waffle Cross 3.0 was super fun. It was a little drizzly out and Andy was joking about all the people who texted him to say they weren't coming because of the rain. "Um, this is cyclocross!"

The super awesome shirt, available soon (I hope!):

The ride was excellent. I was feeling much more in shape than I did in April. We rode some 'cross-friendly trails in Rock Meadow before heading on to Battle Road. Unfortunately, large sections were closed (some kind of sand/clay mix had been freshly spread), so after Ed S. got two nails in his rear tire, we called it a day and headed back to Wheelworks for waffles.

Two Wheelworkers pioneered the waffle with fluff. The fluffle, if you will.

Can't wait for next month's ride!

Monday, June 7, 2010

Big Ring Rumpus

I did my first race since October 2008 today, the Big Ring Rumpus. It's a mt bike race with a cyclocross category. Several of my Hup teammates came as well. The forecast looked awful (thunderstorms, tons of rain), so Ed and Elliot stayed at home. (Despite the name of the race, I did not use my big ring once!)

Chip, Hup New Belgium coordinator, set up a tent with his Lion of Flanders flag.

(photo by Chip)

My new Hup bottles! (photo by Chip)

There were 5 women racing cyclocross. The start was pretty fast and I did my best to hang on to the wheel of Christine from Quad Cycles. I was having a hard time staying on but went to the front to take my turn toward the end of the first 4-mile lap (of five). The course was super flat and fast (perfect for 'cross bikes) and the mud didn't slow things down much. Although we had gotten clear instructions beforehand that the finish chute was to the left and the way to to course for more laps was to the right, in my anaerobic state I went left (as did some mt bikers) and lost a lot of ground to Christine at the start of the second lap. I burned some matches trying to catch up and was with her for a little while, but it was only a matter of time before she rode me off her wheel. I kept getting passed by mt bikers from the sport category and hoped that I could hang on with one, but I didn't find any good candidates until halfway through the last lap. I got a little complacent sitting on and got passed by Michele from ECV very close to the finish. She had already raced the novice category on a mt bike earlier in the day! There was a twisty cyclocross-style chicane at the finish to make it easier to pick finish order, so as soon as Michele passed me I counter-attacked to stay ahead. There was no point in trying to cat-and-mouse the twisty finish (especially since I have no idea if I can sprint -- my sprinting muscles are TINY now). To my surprise, I stayed ahead of her and finished 2nd. Super fun and a great course!

(photo by Chip)

All my stuff was muddy, of course. As I spent an hour cleaning everything up and moving my things in from the car and trying to find something to eat (I was ravenous for the rest of the day) I remembered why we don't do this so often anymore. Racing is sooo much fun, but takes sooo much time. :)

I miss it though. It was so awesome to see many old friends (Jeff G, Eric M, Carl R, Mike/Cathy, Thom P, just to name a few). To get an idea of how fast the course was, check out out the second video in Thom's race report.

Sunday, June 6, 2010

Happy early birthday, Ed

We had a few friends over for dinner last night to celebrate Ed's birthday a few days early.

Babies! Elliot, Eva, and Elijah, in order of age.

Yum! Birthday cupcake.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

Enjoying my camera

I've been having lots of fun trying to get better photos with our DSLR. I was relying too heavily on aperture-priority for a while, so now I'm trying to branch out. But I'm still using the different auto settings.

A new high chair and sweet potatoes:

Some flattering late-afternoon light:

Wednesday, June 2, 2010


On 5/14, our close friends Rachel and Josh welcomed a beautiful baby boy, Elijah. We went to his bris on 5/21. We feel so lucky to be part of this little guy's life and look forward to having lots of adventures with him!

3 days old.

At the bris:

Me and Elliot, Rachel and Elijah, Cara and Eva.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Visit from Po-po

I am woefully behind on blogging. We recently had Elliot's Po-po (Chinese for "grandmother") and his Grandpa Roy come to visit all the way from Hawaii. We had so much fun with them. My mom is so great at getting Elliot to laugh! She is a baby comedian.

Elliot took his first subway ride!

And then his second, when we met up with Brad and Silas for a trip to the Harvard Natural History Museum. They were in town for Fiona's grad school reunion.

After the museum, we had Vietnamese food.

We did the Burlington Education Foundation 5k run/walk. Ed, Brad, and Kris ran, while Mom, Roy, and I walked. Elliot protested against the infant seat, so we had to take it off and spend some time reconfiguring the stroller after the start of the walk, which meant we were just about DFL. You know your "athletic career" is in trouble when you're worrying about whether or not you can complete a 5k walk in under an hour. :)

Mom discovered that Elliot thinks sideways people are HILARIOUS.

It was a wonderful visit. We hope Po-po and Grandpa Roy come back soon!