Today is Alex's birthday. It seems almost impossible that he is now twenty years old. It just isn't right. I still feel like I'm twenty years old and now my fifth child is that age. It seems like he's having a great time on his mission and that is great. There are so many reasons that a young man should go on a mission and personal growth is just a small part of it all.
So we had a bit of excitement this week. Serene came down with her girls on Thursday so that Grandma could take them to the zoo. Sydney has been looking forward to this trip for some time. Thursday night I was driving home from the temple when I received a rather panicked call from Lisa. Apparently Serene had put her girls to bed in Alex's room and was walking down the hallway to the guest room when she felt something grab her shirt. We have some boxes of Alex's stuff stacked in the hallway waiting for me to haul them up into the attic and Serene was next to the boxes so she looked over at the boxes expecting to see Sheba sitting there but what she saw instead was Tom. That stupid snake had escaped again but this was the first time he'd actually attacked anyone (not counting Alex of course). I guess I have to take some of the blame because it's been a while since he's eaten but that snake is becoming annoying. Pretty soon we won't have any more guests come to see us. I arrived home and put Tom back into his living quarters but I was concerned about him getting out again. It was late so I couldn't go and get a mouse for him and checking out the bowling ball I could see where Tom had actually bent the wire mesh on the side of the lid. I guess the snake is getting big enough that he can actually bend the lid. I'm going to have to make a stronger lid or we're not going to have many more guests come and visit us.
I was afraid that Serene was going to pack up her girls and go home and I was also worried that Lisa might go with her so I decided I'd better find a solution to keep the snake in his cage until I could make a stronger lid. I went out into my back yard and brought in a concrete block. It was heavy enough and held down the edges of the lid better than a bowling ball would so I hoped it would work. Serene was hoping the entire brick would fall into the cage and kill the snake.
Friday was Grandma's day at the zoo but today was my day with the girls. Lisa took Serene and Sarah to some church meeting and guess who got babysitting duty. That's right, Grandpa. I let them mess up the house good and proper but when the started going a bit crazy I figured they needed to burn off some steam at the park. I loaded them up in the stroller and jogged up the park. Sydney thought the stroller was very cool because it was going so fast. We had a ton of fun at the park on the slides, dinosaurs, climbing things and the swings. After a while at the park I realized that my head was beginning to sunburn so I told the girls we had to go. After about five "one more pushes" on the swings we headed home. We tried to chase down some crows in the field and then headed home. I really hate to see them go.
After Serene and the girls left I had to get my four mile run in. I've been running shorter distances during the week but on the weekends I'm trying to build up to five miles because that's what I've got to do in the race. Next week will be five miles but his week was four. I actually ran four and a half. It's really kind of cool because I'm really starting to enjoy the running. I as enjoying the running before my knee surgery but I haven't gotten back to the that point for fear of ruining my knee. I then read that cool book, "Born to Run" which got me excited about running again but I messed up my foot when I ran too far on feet that hadn't built up the strength yet. This time I started very carefully and I'm really enjoying it again. Part of the fun is that a choose running routes that are fun.
Most of my running is still on boring old roads but on the longer runs I can go down into the canyon. It is so beautiful down there that sometimes I feel like I could run all day. I decided to stop and take a few pictures to share with you. This first picture is one of the fields I run through every morning on my short runs. You'd hardly know that the free way is about a hundred yards from where I'm standing.
This next path though is down in the Penasquitos canyon and it is quite a ways away from the free way. Finally the last pictures is directly underneath the freeway and only a few hundred yards from our house. We are really lucky to live right on one of the most beautiful canyons in the area. I love it. Wish me luck on this race, it's only a few weeks away. I'm definitely going to keep on running after the race is over. I feel a whole lot better than when I wasn't running.
In the first week after the beginning of daylight savings time there is a 17% increase in traffic accidents, a 5% increase in heart attacks and an increase in suicides.