Friday, December 31, 2010

2010: A YEAR IN REVIEW

A lot has happened with our family this year. Some I've blogged about, some I've FaceBooked about and some I did neither. The big highlight this year was our granddaughter, Maddie, was born and our son, Daniel, returning safely from Afghanistan.

Below are a few of the highlights from 2010: Happy New Year everyone!

JANUARY
Daniel is in Afghanistan and has been since November. We get an occasional phone call from him, which most of the time keeps getting disconnected. A devastating earthquake in Haiti. The heartbreaking photos touched most of us.

To celebrate a new triathlon training season I even tried my hand at poetry in honor of triathlon

IT'S A LOVE HATE THING
You o triathlon,
builder of egos and breaker of hearts ...

I hate it when you raise me up
I hate it more when you tear me down.

I hate it when you promise me glory
then throw me to the ground.

I hate your 5 a.m. wake up calls
and swimming in the dark.

I hate your freezing cold swimming pools
and when I see a shark.

I hate it when its time to ride
and ride and ride some more.

How your gale-force wind is always there
that ain’t no Kona lore.

I hate the way you make me run
I hate it but it’s cool.

I hate the way you challenge me
like I was back in school.

I hate the fact we cannot draft
Bike refs make sure of that.

I hate those cards of yellow and red
that whole penalty tent format.

I hate it when you make me laugh,
even worse when you make me cry.

But love that you made me an Ironman
then branded me till I die.

I hate it when you’re not around
after Kona’s race in the fall.

But mostly I hate the way I don’t hate you,
not even close
not even a little bit
not even at all.
(Inspired from the poem, "10 Things I Hate About You")

January was the start to a very long 10-month triathlon training season.

FEBRUARY
Daniel turned 20 years old in Afghanistan while patrolling, getting shot at and generally being miserable. Another tragic drunken driver fatality happened here in Kona. This time killing a high school girl on Queen K.


The big news for me in February is I met Lance Armstrong and had the chance to see him race against triathlon pro Chris Lieto.

A lot of Kona swimmers were riled up about the heat being turned off at the pool (it still is off. Plus they started closing the pool twice a month for furlough days.)

MARCH
My first triathlon race of the year, Lavaman took place. I actually made the podium with a third place finish. Something I never imagined would ever happen. Karen competed in her second Lavaman and did excellent.


Daniel is still in Afghanistan but healthy.

Lots of swimming, biking and running going on in Kona.

APRIL
A very busy month for our family. Three birthdays, Karen, our son, Jon (who turned 27), and mine. And our wedding anniversary - 31 years. You can go here: A BUSY MONTH to watch the video I made in honor of our anniversary.

MAY
May was a great month. Our first granddaughter, Madison Lynn Permenter, was born.


And here's a photo of Maddie at about 6 and a half months.


When Maddie was born I even had an urge to write some grunge poetry. While our daughter, Rachael, was in labor on Oahu I was on the Big Island running 10 miles training for Honu. Karen kept me up-to-date via cell phone. Poor cell reception from the hospital caused me to only get cryptic messages on what was happening. Thus the following was created:

LABOR OF LOVE
Water leaking, water gushing;
2 centimeters, 4 centimeters;

Dilation, balloon inflation;
IV fluid, amniotic fluid;

Stretching, tearing, new mom forbearing;
contraction, distraction, uterine inaction;

Tears of pain, tears of joy;
soon we'll say "it's a girl, not a boy."

Waiting, waiting our breath abating ...
a gift of God, new life creating.

Well, as I said, grunge poetry. That's what running 10 miles in the heat, combined with static-filled, staccato cell phone conversations yields I guess.

JUNE
Honu, the Hawaii Half Ironman was this month. The worst race of my tri career. But even so, I qualified for Ironman World Championship.


As you can see in this photo at the finish of Honu, I wasn't a happy camper. I thought I had lost my slot for Ironman but fortunately they gave us two slots in my age group.

Daniel is finally back from war safe and sound and came home for a visit. He was able to watch me race at Honu.

JULY
There were several fun races in July. The King's Swim (a 1.2-mile ocean swim) in which I got a PR and the Peaman Kaloko Run. A very steep 6 mile run. How steep? check this out ...


OK, that may be a bit of an exaggeration, but when you run it that's how steep it feels.

Also in July, Ironman announced the end of big Island and State "earned" slots for the world championship. From now on Big Island and state triathletes hoping to make it to the big show will be entered into a lottery. No more "May the best athlete win ..." Now it's "May the luckiest athlete win" So I made this shirt in honor of next years lucky athletes:


Go Team Lotto!!!

AUGUST
The dog days of training for the world championship. LOng rides, long runs and long swims. I got back in touch with my artistic side and created a few computer drawings from the Tour de France.


Of course my best drawing, Alberto Contador, is pretty much worthless now ...


SEPTEMBER
Ironman is only a month away and I'm hating those 6 and 7 hour bike rides. I have an ankle injury that hurts with every pedal stroke and riding a hundred-plus miles at a time is a real killer. I also rode over the Kohala mountains for the first (and last) time. The scariest ride I've ever had. Super windy. Nearly got blown off the bike and the road.

Ironman athletes are arriving in town. The dog days of training are over and the excitement of the nearing race is building.

OCTOBER
Ironman time!!! I met so many great people/athletes this year. If you click on October on the right side of my blog you'll see photos of many of them.


This was my second Ironman. I beat last year's time by about 9 minutes. But more importantly I finished and that's what counts for me.

I did another computer drawing in honor of our local professional triathlete, Bree Wee.


NOVEMBER
After five years of living in the same house, we had to move so we spent most of November searching for a house and moving. I kept up my running and had a couple of races. I also got hit by a car while running on Alii Drive. No major damage but I did suffer from a stiff neck and some damage to my spine that showed up a couple of days afterward. I learned to ALWAYS get information from a driver even if you don't feel like you are injured.

I also started writing my book. November is National Novel Writing Month, also called NaNo Wri. The goal is to write a 50,000 word novel in 30 days and although I wasn't writing a novel I gave it my best try. But with moving to a new house consuming most of my free time I only managed just under 11,000 words. But at least it's a start and I worked out some issues with the subject I'm writing about and progressed further emotionally than I thought I would. It's a tough subject to talk/write about and hopefully one day I'll get worked out and all down on paper.

DECEMBER
Our daughter, Rachael, and granddaughter, Madison, came for a visit before they move to Georgia.


I started turning some of my photos into computer paintings to decorate our new house. I kind of like the results. Once printed on canvas I'm filling in highlights with oil paint to give it that freshly painted smell and texture. I may try to sell some at some local markets as well.


Well, that was my year. If you managed to read it all, thank you. If you just browsed it thanks as well.

PLANS FOR 2011
I don't have a lot of plans for 2011. So far I'm not planning on doing triathlons this year. My ankle is pretty messed up and riding a bike is just too painful. I go to the doctor next week who will probably refer me to a surgeon and who knows how long all of that will take. My athletic plans are focusing on running (for some reason running is the least painful activity for my ankle. Walking and biking are the most painful.) I'll also continue to swim. I'm hoping to run in a few marathon and swim as many ocean races as I can.

A new hobby I just picked up, thanks to Karen's Christmas gift, is learning to play the drums. Karen got me a small electric drum set that is really just a toy but while trying to get down the coordination of moving your foot, and each hand at different speeds and times reminded me of learning to swim, I couldn't resist the challenge of it. Plus I love music with lots of heavy drums in it. So I'm hoping to overcome my lack of coordination and be able to at least play some basic drum beats.

I don't know, do you think 51 years old is too old to become a rock star?

Happy New Year everyone. Be safe and thanks for stopping by throughout the year.

Friday, December 24, 2010

MERRY CHRISTMAS FROM HAWAII

Wishing everyone a very merry Christmas. Thanks for stopping by my blog and hope you all have a fantastic new year.

Oh, and if you are reading this Christmas Eve and wondering where Santa is check this out:

"NORAD Tracks Santa now has a Twitter account, a Facebook page, a Youtube channel and apps for mobile phones, along with a website, noradsanta.org, and the phone line, 877-HI NORAD.
More than 13 million unique visitors went to the website last December. NORAD Tracks Santa more than 625,000 “likes” on Facebook by Friday and more than 49,000 followers on Twitter.
The phone line is still at the core of NORAD Tracks Santa. Volunteers answer calls in two-hour shifts from 2 a.m. Mountain Time on Christmas Eve until 3 a.m. Christmas Day."

So stop by noradsanta.org to track santa or give them a call. Michelle Obama is also answering Santa's calls from Hawaii.

Santa's stop in Hawaii.

Our house this year.


MERRY CHRISTMAS

Friday, December 10, 2010

'PAINTING IS JUST ANOTHER WAY OF KEEPING A DIARY' - Pablo Picasso



Henry Ward Beecher once said, “Every artist dips his brush in his own soul, and paints his own nature into his pictures.” If so, below is a glimpse of my own nature, or maybe my soul.

My pictures began with a camera, a lens and natural lighting that made its way to a computer, mixed in with filters, electronic brushes and adjusted pixels and finally printed on canvas and added oil and acrylic paints. A true mixed media of art forms and of ages (traditional and computerized painting). This is my hobby while I decide if I will continue in triathlon or on to something else. Maybe art, maybe writing or maybe back to triathlon.



Somewhere along the way before Ironman I lost my enthusiasm for the sport, especially the bike portion. Mostly because of an ankle injury that made biking extremely painful for the months leading up to Ironman. I was hoping taking some time off after ironman would allow my ankle to get better but it is still bothering me and is forcing me to go to the doctor and possibly have surgery.

So in the meantime, this is what's filling my spare time. It's hard to see the texture of the prints on the computer but I hope you like them. Who knows, they may be for sale one day.








Tuesday, December 7, 2010

JUST GRAND

Our daughter, Rachael and our granddaughter, Madison, are visiting us from Oahu this week. Next month they are moving to Georgia so it'll be a long while before we see them again. Rachael's husband, Josh, is in the Army and is being stationed at Fort Benning.
Here are some photos from this week:

Maddie at 6 months old

Who's the little princess?

Curiouser and curiouser

Mommy and baby sleeping

Proud grandma

Play time

Tasting grandpa's hat. Teething time

Santa's little elf

Friday, December 3, 2010

LIFE IS BUSY

It's been a long and busy past few weeks. We are still in the process of moving. Well, mostly we are finished except for a yard sale tomorrow and then getting rid of everything at the old house that doesn't sell. Then cleaning and finally we'll be finished.

One thing I've learned over the past month is that training for Ironman is easy compared to moving. I'm beat up, banged up and plain tired of the whole process.


(Maddie learning to sit up by herself.)

On a brighter note, Rachael and Madison are coming to visit tomorrow for a week. Tomorrow is also Aaron's birthday.


(Aaron the bell ringer.)

Life is pretty busy this time of year for us especially with the move. By January things should be slowing down I hope. I hope you all are staying warm. I've been having snow envy as I do every year at this time. Our temps are in the 80s for the highs and 70s for the lows.

When I get to really craving the cold I go out to Costco and jump into their walk-in refrigerator. That seems to do the trick for a while.


(A cool 32 degrees. Just what the soul needs in December in Hawaii.)

Well, take care and Merry Christmas. I'll post again soon.

HOW TO PAINT A MINION ON A ROCK

I've been pretty busy the past few weeks so I haven't had a chance to do much sketching. We've been taking the boys on "tre...