First of all, I’d like to share with you the fact that I ran over seven miles yesterday. Seven miles! IN A ROW. And the crazy part was, I wasn’t even dying at the end. I didn’t finish that seventh mile with half a lung protruding visibly from my right eyesocket or a giant splatter of barf down my shirt or ANYTHING! I felt—and here is where shit really gets fucked up—like I could have kept going. With the exception of my hands, which had frozen into aching, immobile claws thanks to Seattle’s recent sub-30 temperatures and my previously-fine, now woefully-inequate lightweight running gloves, I felt . . . fine.

It’s almost like this weekly training is actually working. Which I know, total no-shitter, and yet I am here to tell you I secretly did not believe I would ever get any better at running, no matter how often I tried to do it. I knew I would commit to the New Orleans half marathon no matter what, but I sort of thought I’d end up maybe running four or five miles then walking the rest of it.

Now I’m actually starting to believe, like full-on believe, I’m going to run thirteen miles in February. Thirteen miles! IN A ROW. And when that’s done, man, what will be next? Oh, the world is just filled with finish lines, friends.

In other weekend news of the far more exhausting sort, I took Riley on an overnight trip to a Great Wolf Lodge. A few months ago I was offered the opportunity to check out the resort under a reduced nightly rate, and thinking back to the wonderful time I had with Riley in D.C. last April I planned for a just-the-two-of-us outing.

I know, I know: total dick move to leave my other son at home, right? But it’s so rare that I get any time alone with either of them, and I figured Riley would appreciate it a lot more than Dylan would. Plus, selfishly, I knew it would be lots easier with just Riley, so.

It was kind of a hassle getting from our house to our hotel room—there was an hour and a half drive, a parking lot the size of Texas, then a check-in line that took over 30 minutes to navigate, but once we were settled Riley was super geeked. He picked out his bed and immediately chastised me when I absentmindedly dumped a bag on HIS covers.


We got into our swim gear and made for the main attraction, which is a giant indoor waterpark. Of course, Riley wanted nothing whatsoever to do with the eight million waterslides or the lurching wave pool, but he loved the kiddie pool area and the (non-moving) jetskis which you can use to shoot water at other kids.


After we’d pruned up nicely and were generally reeking of chlorine, we got dressed and checked out the arcade. It was kind of hard to find a game he could get into, but skeeball was a good choice. We played that until the machine pooped out an obligatory string of tickets, which he was able to turn in for a cheap plastic car and OH MY GOD THAT TOTALLY BLEW HIS MIND.


The entire lodge was decorated for the holidays, and it was really pretty amazing.


I’m not really sure he’s in the intended location for this bucolic, Lodge-branded photo, but what the hell.


At around 8 PM there was an advertised story hour, which for some reason I had pictured as involving a nice older lady with bifocals, reading from a beloved childhood classic. Riley and I got situated in the midst of a large crowd of kids and parents and then this mildly terrifying animatronic display chugged to life, with various animals saying various robotic things and, worse, singing, and we sat there for a while before I whispered, “Hey, you want to go do something else?” to Riley and he said “Sure!” with no hesitation and I loved him just a little bit more.


The coolest thing we did at the lodge involved buying a plastic wand which could be used to wave at various things around the hotel and trigger them to light up or open or make noise or whatever. If you pointed your want at enough of a certain group of objects (treasure chests, painting, etc) you completed a quest, and I guess there are several quests you can try and finish. We mostly just walked around “looking for magic”, and you know, it was oddly satisfying. Riley really loved it, and judging by the teeming throngs of other kids we saw wielding their own sticks, this seemed to be a hit for most age groups.



If I have one complaint about the lodge, it’s the cost. I paid $100 for our room, which I assumed was at MOST half the going rate. Checking their website, though, I see that our room—the smallest, cheapest you can get—is currently $300. The waterpark is included, but there are lots of extra costs. The wand ($15, and that was for the basic wand. Oh, you could get fancier wands, if you wanted to), the kid-friendly activities, the arcade . . . it all adds up pretty quickly. Plus, we had dinner at a buffet and it was about $30 for the two of us. Ouch, especially since Riley basically ate a piece of pizza with the top scraped off and a handful of crackers. The room did have a little fridge in it, and if we go back I’d make use of that. There isn’t any room service, so unless you bring your own meals your choices are the buffet, a Pizza Hut, or a Starbucks.


I wish the rates weren’t quite so high, or that at least they’d be more flexible with check-in and check-out times. This isn’t a gripe specific to the Great Wolf folks, obviously, but when you can’t get to your room until 4 PM and you have to check out by 11, that $300+ night cost for less than 24 hours really irks. On the upside, you can use the waterpark before and after those times.

Overall, though, the whole thing was fantastic, and I’m really grateful for the just-us time we got to spend together. One of my favorite moments was right before lights-out when we were both lying in our respective beds with our books, and I said, “I had a great day with you today,” and he said “Me too, Mommy. I had a good day with YOU.”




Notify of
Inline Feedbacks
View all comments
PHP Booking Engine
9 years ago

Good post. I learn something new and challenging on sites I stumbleupon every day. It’s always useful to read articles from other authors and practice a little something from other web sites.

9 years ago

This site was… how do you say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something that helped me. Many thanks!

9 years ago

It’s hard to come by well-informed people in this particular topic, but you seem like you know what you’re talking about! Thanks

std testing
9 years ago

That is a good tip especially to those new to the blogosphere. Short but very precise information… Appreciate your sharing this one. A must read article!

mac eye makeup looks
9 years ago

The other day, while I was at work, my cousin stole my iphone and tested to see if it can survive a thirty foot drop, just so she can be a youtube sensation. My iPad is now broken and she has 83 views. I know this is entirely off topic but I had to share it with someone!

9 years ago

Where do I purchase phentermine online?

9 years ago

What unlocked phone can work for boost mobile?

tree removal
9 years ago

An intriguing discussion is worth comment. I do believe that you ought to write more on this subject matter, it might not be a taboo subject but typically people do not speak about such issues. To the next! Best wishes!!|

luxury home builders
9 years ago

Hi there, simply become aware of your weblog thru Google, and found that it is truly informative. I’m gonna be careful for brussels. I’ll appreciate should you continue this in future. Numerous people shall be benefited out of your writing. Cheers!|

Investment realtors
Investment realtors
9 years ago

Hello there! I know this is kinda off topic but I’d figured I’d ask. Would you be interested in exchanging links or maybe guest authoring a blog article or vice-versa? My website discusses a lot of the same topics as yours and I think we could greatly benefit from each other. If you’re interested feel free to send me an e-mail. I look forward to hearing from you! Superb blog by the way!|

car donation tax deduction

I know this web site provides quality based articles or reviews and other data, is there any other web site which presents such things in quality?|

alcoholic rehab
alcoholic rehab
9 years ago

Awesome article.|

miele vacuum reviews
miele vacuum reviews
9 years ago

I was curious if you ever thought of changing the layout of your site? Its very well written; I love what youve got to say. But maybe you could a little more in the way of content so people could connect with it better. Youve got an awful lot of text for only having one or two pictures. Maybe you could space it out better?|

rural internet
9 years ago

I know this web site gives quality depending articles and extra stuff, is there any other site which presents such things in quality?|

satellite internet
9 years ago

I was suggested this blog by my cousin. I am not sure whether this post is written by him as no one else know such detailed about my problem. You’re amazing! Thanks!|

best acne treatment
9 years ago

Today, I went to the beachfront with my children. I found a sea shell and gave it to my 4 year old daughter and said “You can hear the ocean if you put this to your ear.” She placed the shell to her ear and screamed. There was a hermit crab inside and it pinched her ear. She never wants to go back! LoL I know this is totally off topic but I had to tell someone!|

best digital slr camera

This blog was… how do I say it? Relevant!! Finally I have found something which helped me. Cheers!|

satellite providers
9 years ago

It’s really a cool and helpful piece of information. I’m satisfied that you shared this helpful info with us. Please keep us informed like this. Thanks for sharing.|

brownstone houses
8 years ago

This is a topic which is near to my heart… Thank you! Exactly where are your contact details though?|

addiction treatment center westlake oh

Excellent post. I was checking continuously this weblog and I’m inspired! Extremely useful info specially the final phase :) I handle such info a lot. I was looking for this certain info for a long time. Thank you and best of luck. |