What the Family Learned this Week

Wednesday, October 23, 2013

"I'm running and I'm running and I'm still running"

By Lauren LaClare

So last week I ran the Chicago Marathon.  I trained for 18 weeks...running hundreds of miles over 4 1/2 months...with the hopes of being able to run 26.2 miles on race day.  This is my 4th time running a marathon but my first one being the big 4-0! 

The beginning of my training went fine...I ran...and ran...then about week 15 of the training my body was like, "hey old lady you are too old and not really the right body type to be running as much as you are." I was having hip pain, calf pain, foot pain, pretty much my left side of my body was really mad at me. A doctor told me I had tendonitis...pretty much muscle tears were causing the pain.  He said with rest and time it would heal...but with only 4 days before the race he said a whole lot of medical strategic taping would have to be good enough.

So with lots of prayers, my tape in hand...(well actually on my foot) a whole lotta ibuprofen, and caffeinated power gels in my pocket I crossed the starting line.  In running this marathon you get to see the best in people.  Everyone is so excited and happy and supportive of this crazy (yes I know it's crazy) race. People are lined up the entire way cheering, singing, high fiving, or passing out Vaseline (ya don't want to know) or candy for a little sugar boost.   There are lots of funny signs...my fave, "Run Random Stranger Run." Or..."This is the worst parade EVER." Pretty much I had a smile on my face the whole time.

I was slow and steady and finished feeling great.  My motto was I am not here for a good time...but here for a GOOD time." And like in life sometimes all you can ask after doing something hard is that you finish and still have a smile on your face. :)

Saturday, October 12, 2013

Deep Thoughts About Ethan Turning 13

Small children disturb your sleep, big children your life.  
              ~Yiddish Proverb

It kills you to see them grow up.  But I guess it would kill you quicker if they didn't.  
             ~Barbara Kingsolver, Animal Dreams

I have never really liked teenagers. I didn’t like them when I WAS one. And I was permanently scarred when I student taught high school to earn my secondary teaching certificate my last year of college (did I mention a fight broke out on our last day in the classroom?) It’s one of the reasons I went to graduate school, since I loved teaching history, I just hated the teenagers. Even today, when I see a group of teenagers walking down the street, or approaching me in a store, I tense up, like I have post-traumatic stress. I’ve poisoned my kids’ minds too, so much so that any time they see a group of young people they automatically say “Look at those punks!”  I served in the Young Women’s once at church, but it only lasted six weeks.  

So imagine my horror as the day approached that my first born, my baby, would be turning 13. Even just saying it out loud made me throw up a little bit in my mouth.  But we are trying to have a little fun with it. I like to tease him by singing the theme song to a puberty video that he watched at school -“Just Around the Corner.” It’s fun to see the amount of food he can put away, and he’s been fighting ordering off the kids menu for more than a year already. It’s nice to have a home-grown babysitter who only occasionally forgets to not abuse his brother and sister.  We already have a no slamming doors policy. He’s not exactly Mr. Talkative about his day, and I’m afraid the divulging of details will only get worse.  

As I complained to those around me about Ethan reaching this milestone, one of my friends shared this analogy about kids getting older. She said that teenage children are like astronauts who are orbiting the earth. For while they will go radio silent as they are making the journey, but they will make their way back around. Oh I hope so!  And I hope that I will learn to love teenagers, at least the ones that live in my house!

Sunday, October 6, 2013

Learning From Humor, History, Television and Song Lyrics

By: Kent and Marilyn Granat

1.  We learned, once again, there are glimpses of truth in most humor.  Dan Naturman, a comedian on Letterman, recently joked, “I was talking with a Canadian girl who mentioned a person named Steven Harper who seemed to her to be a pretty important guy.  I said to her, ‘who is that’?  She said to me, ‘you got to be kidding me, you don’t know who the prime minister of Canada is’?  And I said, ‘I’ll do you one better, I didn’t know Canada had a prime minister’.

2.  On August 28th the country commemorated the 50th anniversary of Dr. King’s March on Washington.  Marilyn and Kent taped six hours of C-Span (hard to believe), to capture a fast forward version of what happened on this seminal anniversary at the Lincoln Memorial.  Due to the length of the ceremony, the number of speakers seemed, and was, endless.  The highlights for us were:  John Lewis (current Congressman from Georgia) who had a fireball speech at the March on Washington 50 years ago;  three living Presidents (Jimmy Carter, Bill Clinton and Barrack Obama), reminding us how each got elected in the first place;  two daughters of departed Presidents (Caroline Kennedy and Lynda Bird Johnson Robb);  and some cool celebrities (Jamie Foxx, Oprah).

However, with all of these prominent folks, the speaker who touched our hearts the most, was NBA Hall of Fame player, Bill Russell (Boston Celtics).  He explained in his short speech that he was at the March on Washington 50 years ago.  In fact, the night before the event he met Dr. King, and was asked to be with Dr. King on the steps of the Lincoln Memorial, but he declined saying, “he had not done anything to warrant such an honor”.  In closing his remarks, he advised the large mixed audience to follow the adage he grew up with in the projects, “keep on, keeping on.”

3.  We smiled when attending the October 4th Utah State - BYU football game, and reading, in large block letters, along the northwest cement base of the Romney Stadium (not that Romney) and Merlin Olson field, ‘BE CAREFUL OUT THERE’.  

Everyone in the Granat home, and most everyone in America over the age of 40, knows that this phrase comes from the iconic Hill Street Blues TV show, when, Sergeant Esterhaus would say in the squad room, at the start of every episode, in at least forty different ways, “let’s be careful out there.”  You can revisit the memory, or learn something new, at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T2QApwtE8zQ 

4.  We observed, once again, you can learn from song lyrics.  Ray Wylie Hubbard, a Texas legendary country blues singer-song writer, has a marvelous tune called Mother Blues, that captures his life story in one song.  It ends with him saying, “and the days that I keep my gratitude higher than my expectations well I have really good days.”  It is worth watching at www.youtube.com/watch?v=E7x-80GA1jk