Kid: “What did you get for your running?”
Me: “A pair of two-pound gloves and an eight-pound weighted vest.”
Kid: “You are going to kill yourself!”
Me: “I’m not going to wear it all NOW. I have to train for it. Like Dragon Ball Z.”
Kid: “So, it’s going to take you two seasons to train?”
This kid is savage… XD
I was going to just throw this up on Facebook and forget about it but I figured this was also a good time to talk about where the running is these days.
I did indeed get some weighted workout gear but if you have been following me on Instagram, you may have seen me complain about getting to 2 miles in under 30 minutes in an effort to have a complete 5k take less time. If I can get to 5k in 30-45 minutes, a 10k becomes much more feasible from a time standpoint. I can’t imagine cramming 2 hours of training into every day. I’m lucky to get 1 hour between reading for reviews, writing, needlework, working full time (and overtime), and kicking ass as a single mom.
Currently, I am hovering around the 31-32 minute mark for 2 miles. I get disappointed but I try to remember that its a process and I’m not doing too bad if I’m getting back the speed I had before my surgery and after being sick for a month. Heck, I’ve even lost a pound. I am used to beating myself up over my “failures” but I am forcing myself to see this as a journey and I am perpetually taking steps forward. I want to be faster and stronger and I am absolutely going to get there.
Now that this story has been edited (and bless all your hearts for not pointing out the copious and sometimes hilarious typos in the posts) and has a cover, I’m seeing about posting it around to sell! 😀
As for what project I’ll finish next? Er… I have no idea. I’m just GOING. But look for Winter Boot in the coming days! As soon as I figure out this file conversion nonsense…
“Leave the phone under the table and hide. When you hear me say so, blow the whistle in the bag!”
Rabbit dives into the bag and I push the phone under the scary mirrir where it disappears into the darkness. I can feel Rabbit squirming to find the whistle as I search for a big enough patch of shadow to hide me.
I crouch behind a giant pot that stinks of rusty ice. I can feel the cold seep through my mittens as the skittering grinds into the room and the Cold One drags herself near me. Her toenails on the floor hurt my ears and I fight really hard to keep from whimpering in pain.
The Cold One scuttles over to the table and leans on it so hard it groans. The small weight of the whistle is suddenly in the palm of my hand and fear steals more of my breath than the cold. I watch her curl her spindly hands over the edge and press her face right against the surface. I think for a second about wet tongues getting suck on poles but I bet the Cold One doesn’t stick to anything.
A horrible sucking sound makes me clap my hands over my ears. Frog and Rabbit burrow deeper into my coat and all I want in the world is to scream for her to stop. When I peek, I am instantly sorry I did as I watch jagged spikes grow from the bent back and hunched shoulders to make her look like a great big, scary, ice porcupine. The house shakes and groans as the noise stops and I swear it’s even colder; so bad my throat hurts when I breathe.
“Do it NOW!” I hear Marsalla scream and I take a deep, burning cold breath and blow on the whistle so hard, my face heats up. I’m exhausted and panting when I stop just in time to hear the little phone I left under the table say; “Run like hell! Don’t forget the necklace till help!” before it explodes in a burst of orange light.
When the bits of toy phone hit the ice, black goo leaks out and the Cold One roars. I don’t stick around to see any more and I do exactly what Marsalla sais. I hold the glowing candy out in front of me with Rabbit in my other arm and run as fast I my shaking legs and flopping bag will let me.
It’s seconds before I hear angry growling and scratching behind me and I dare to look back. Black ooze splatters around the Cold One as she runs after us, making such a mess, she slips in it, stumbling to the ice floor as I flee around a corner.
The candy jewel flutters when I make a wrong turn and gleams bright in the dark when I’m right. I nearly scream with joy at the sight of the front door but I feel a snag on my hood.
“Cheater!” The Cold One screams. “Sneak thief! Tresspasser!”
I hear the cricking whine of ice forming on my hood and pull hard to get away from the leaking ice monster. My hood doesn’t rip, it snaps where she touched it. In my panic, the candy necklace gets so hot, I have no coice but to throw it at her.
When it hits her in the cheek, a huge black mark of rot forms. I don’t watch it spread, I yank hard and run away from the wailing. The house is shaking under my feet. The wail becomes a howl when my mittens hit the door knob. I don’t even have to pull; the door crumbles to shards of frozen wood. I jump over them, side stepping the trap door, and reach the gate trembling all over. I don’t trust looking back anymore, not till I’m off the sidewalk and halfway into the empty street.
I hear Frog and Rabbit gasp as we all watch the house fall in on itself. Steam rises from the black ooze creeping over the whole thing. A blackend, clawed hand reaches out of the doorway, scraping at the wood. She screams louder, hissing and spitting under the rubble. I take a step back and bump into something soft. I hand hands on my shoulder and I look up to see the frozen prince smiling down at me. He gives me one calming pat before gliding around me.
His feet leave no prints as he passe the gate and walks silently up to the scratching hand. He looks at the Cold One, watches her try and crawl from the junk and I can see his skin glow golden brown. Light pours from his skin and with one final scream and a blinding flash, I’m pushed back by the force of a warm wind so hard, I pass out.
If you saw on my Facebook and Twitter, I finished another short story! Winter Boot was it. There’s probably typos but hey! Here’s the next chapter! 😀
The room around us is filled with the same light eating fog that surrounds the house, the floor so cold, I can feel it through my boots as I hurry to the dim outline of a door. I don’t wait long before squeezing through it and I don’t think about getting cought until I hear Rabbit’s horrified gasp.
“Sorry.” I whisper and my blush of embarassment is so warm, I’m sorta glad I goofed.
“Just be more careful!” She scolds me.
Being extra, super quiet, I follow the tug of the hidden candy around my neck. When I slip on the icy floor and catch myself, I find the walls sticky; groianing umder the press of my mitten. I look down at my two friends and we all share the same look of stomach rumbly nastiness.
The jewel leads me down the squishy hallway to a grey, dirty cersion of Marsalla’s warm and pretty kitchen. A pot boils on the stove, way too small to fit the three of us inside it. I would snoop to see what is in it but the jewel shivers around my neck and pulls me around the corner.
Frog hunkers down deep in my pocket. Rabbit squeeks and pressed against me. I don’t think I’m breathing. My eyes tear as I focus on everything the three of us thought we would fine in Masalla’s home because of how people talk. But it’s here. All of it. Jars of creatures, most not moving and others wishing they weren’t, bones littering the floor, some with meat still on them, and a black table with a mirrored top covered in tiny animal skulls and dripping candles. And the smell… How could it just be in this room? How did we not smell it from the hallway? It smells like something the dogs rolled in that made Auntie throw up.
When the jewel urges me inside, I can almost feel it apologize.
Downy feathers fly up, disturbed by my steps as I move and forcing me to look around. I see my poorly repacked bag and rescue it from the floor. With it on one shoulder and Rabbit on the other, I move to the table. I feel the jewel heat up when I look down into it, wax smeared and dribbled all over the edges and a wet, red handprint in the center. The glass shimmers with the frozen man’s face, the handprint making the blue features look wobbly.
“What should we do?” Says Frog in a shivering whisper.
Before I can guess, a low beep comes from the backpack. With Rabbit watching for the Bone Woman, I pull out a tiny cellphone toy. Blinking in confusion as it beeps again in my hand, I hopd the pastel plastic up to my ear.
“Boot?” Marsalla whispers through the toy.
I sputter a minute before answering. “Yes?”
“A real phone won’t work there. I bet whatever is sucking up the warmth is sucking up all kinds of energy so I rigged up this toy.” Marsalla fumbles with the phone on her end. “What do you see?”
“It’s a mirror with candles on it.” I lean forward and shiver. “I can see the Prince’s face but there’s a red hand on him.”
Marsalla gasps. “She’s sucking the life right out of him. Don’t touch the glass. Don’t touch anything, actually.” I hear glass bottles being moved through the ear piece of the toy. “What else did you see?”
“Not much. The walls are sticky and the Bone Lady had us in cages.”
“Ugly, hunched, skinny old bat.” Rabbit huffed. “I bet she would eat me.”
“Boot, be careful! That’s the Cold One!”
I hear skittering heading towards us from the hallway, like the dogs sound when they run around the kitchen, nails clocking on the tiles.
“Get out of there! Whateve ryou do, don’t let her touch your skin!”
“I don’t understan-”
She’s draining the life from the Prince through his blood on the mirror! If she touches you directly, you’ll die!”
Last Saturday I went with my friend MisfitLibrarian to Maker Faire; a tech nerd’s paradise! 😀 It was really cool but alas, it would have been cooler if I could have brought the kiddo. There were so many stations where things could be assembled:
That’s me making a button. ^_^ One of the few stations not PACKED with people. @_@
I haven’t ridden in a school bus in… At least 15 years. 0.0 These were the “shuttles” going from the faire to the parking lot. It made me feel old… ;_;
But it was worth it because there was a man in a metro card suit with a robot metro card dog… A robot dog. Very awesome. 😀
The theme of the place was so techie, I was very disappointed to find this beer garden was not in fact some kind of garden powered by beer. That would have been too cool for words. Alas, they only sold beer.
This is why it would have been so awesome to get the kiddo here. These were butterfly bikes you could ride in!
And a giant felted t-rex… Because life needs more of those. 🙂
All in all, it’s a really cool place and I wouldn’t mind going back next year. Unfortunately? There is jack my library can do with any of the tech I saw. Sure, if we were a huge library with money to burn and unused space I could see having a maker center with kits and 3D printers and such. But us? We’re lucky we’re here after Sandy. I’m lucky to have a job!
Besides, if the library has any extra money, they need to buy that giant dinosaur.
Ahh, the joy of back to school. I am blessed that my child is at the age where she’s excited to go back to school because she gets to see all of her friends again. To be honest, she hasn’t seen much of her friends over the summer. Partly because they’re busy too and partly because I shun playdates like a mofo.
Why? Am I some sort of antisocial malcontent who hates spending time with other people?
Well, partly. >D Give me a good book and a glass of wine any night but that’s not why the demon seed hasn’t seen much of her friends in a setting outside of camp or the daycare.
Reason #1 is that I’m a single working mother. I don’t have a lot of time to be schlepping my kid all over creation just to see her friends. A lot of her friends mom’s work at home or part time so it’s not easy when I get out of work when our respective offspring should be eating dinner already.
Reason #2 is (and this is the most important) is that I’m a single working mother. What little spare time I have I want to spend it with my kid! Sorry to disappoint fellow parents but I don’t think real quality time is spent running errands and doing chores. It’s awesome that your kid wants to play with my kid but aside from rushing her to eat, get clean, get to whoever’s watching her, rushing home, rush to eat, get clean, and get to sleep, I’d like to play with her! Damnit, I made her so I should get first dibs!
So, with the first Saturday I’m not working looming ahead and about a dozen or so invites from various parents to come see them on Labor Day weekend, I have holed up like a crazy person hiding from the Black Plague. It’s MY weekend, for gods’ sakes; the LAST weekend. And I aim to make it count. 😉
I wake up to the sound of my bag being picked through and the painful creak of rusty metal. First I see the metal bars of my cage, them a small glass bottle sails towards me. I flinch when it hits the ground but doesn’t break. Turning to the source of the noise, I see a shuddering, hunched body of dancing colors. All the color the darkness ate or the snow covered glimmered on the creature’s skin.
The moment I move, it’s eyes are on mine, dingy yellow and squinted at me in suspicion. “Where is it?”
“What lead you here.” I think it’s a she. The wobbly voice sounds a bit like a girl. “I know Marsalla gave you something from the prince. Where is it?”
I feel the candy pulse under my coat. “I was just walking with my friends and we fell into your house.” I look around for Frog and Rabbit but only find Rabbit in a smaller cage hanging next to me. Everything in the room around me is flat, painted a furry gray except for puffs of white from my breathing and Rabbit’s. She looks at me before looking back to the skinny, bone woman.
“Liar.” She growls, and turns back to the mess she’s making.
I look down and there’s only a couple of inches between me and the floor but I don’t dare reach for the little glass bottle. Everytime I breathe, the metal cage creaks. I don’t know what the bone woman will do to me if I move more.
I feel a poke in my side and see Frog’s glittering eyes in my pocket. He gives me the froggy version of a thumbs up and I smile.
Bone Woman finds nothing useful to her in my bag and she skitters away in a huff, ragged clothes dragging on the ground. I think of Auntie telling me not to be seen looking raggedy. For a moment I miss her.
“Maybe hunger will loosen your tongue.” Bone woman rasps and a door slams somewhere in the gray mess around us.
I hold my breath. By the time my body forces me to gasp, Bone Woman hasn’t come back. Frog crawls out of my pocket and hops up to my knee, shivering in the cold room. “Don’t worry, Boot. I saw where she hid the key, I can get to it and we can get out of here.”
“Be careful!” I call after him as Frog jumps to the floor. I worry about him since he can’t warm himself but I am relieved when Frog is bouncing back to me with a tiny gold key. I pick him up to take it and put a grateful and proud little Frog back in my warm pocket.
I don’t hesitate once my door is open, running right to Rabbit to let her out. The candy jewel pulses happily as the three of us repack the bag and leave the cages behind.
Happy “All I Really Want As A Gift Is A Nap” Day to my fellow mom’s! 😀 My kid (and by proxy her father) got me these lovely gifts. The card has a recorded (slightly garbled) message from the kiddo saying how she’ll love me forever no matter where I am; which is so sweet that I think it rotted out a tooth. 🙂
Today will be a (hopefully) fun filled day with my 2.5 foot reason for living on this earth. We’ll have lunch, walk around, and if she’s well behaved; she’ll get ice cream.
I can do without the high temperature but I sure am glad the weather is nice.