Garmin Heart Rate Monitor

I finally caved and bought a Garmin GPS & Heart Rate monitor yesterday. My wonderful husband took time out of his birthday weekend to calibrate it and get me up and running (literally). Below are the results of the maiden voyage with the device (short as it was), Ben riding alongside me on his bicycle. I love my new toy! More posts to come.

Spring has Sprung

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Winter is over, at least the worst of it is here in Texas. February closed out the season with several icy blasts and various snow “storms”, several of which caused concern for the tender plant life.


Now that all traces of snow and ice are gone, new life is beginning, at least in some areas.


Daffodils peeking through happen to coincide with the beginning of tennis season. The weather toyed with us starting off the weekend and Friday night league with a balmy 70 degree victory. Saturday morning dawned brisk and gray reminding us that winter is not quite over (40 degree tennis … brr … at least it was another victory).


Life will continue as new flowers bloom and older flowers move on. How many more buds will great us home from wintry Indiana?

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Note: To see additional spring yard photos, clicking on any of the above should take you to the parent album.

Jacob Creek bed, culmination of a busy Thanksgiving!

Thanksgiving 2010 has proved to be a wonderful affair of staying put. Of course, that does not mean staying put on the couch. Wednesday morning dawned bright and early and after being home for several days for a change, we’d finally had a chance to regroup (slightly). Ready to tackle the next project with the remaining days home before we hit the road again, I quickly researched mulch and rock delivery options. Dismayed that last minute plans may be disrupted by holiday schedules, I did not give up. At 8:30am on Wednesday morning I hit the jackpot. Good prices, great selection, not so bad delivery fee, and best of all, same day delivery! By 12:45 pm we had 1 ton of 2″ – 8″ Colorado Cobbles and 6 cu yards of hardwood mulch sitting in our driveway. Apparently 6 cu yards is a hefty amount.

Taking Wednesday afternoon off to begin the exciting yard rejuvenation project, I dug right in, literally. After 2.5 hours, one side of the house was safely tucked away for the anticipated morning freeze; there was a minimal dent in the driveway mulch pile. I decided it was time to tackle the next task of Christmas shopping and pie baking before I broke my back.


Smart decision considering I had the 10k Ft Worth Turkey Trot to run the next morning. (Side note: Megan and I beat her personal record despite frigid, windy, wet conditions Thursday morning. Go team! Having a good running partner makes all the difference in the world. Thanks Megan for the entertainment, looking forward to our continued runs! See my running tracks to follow along.)

Friday the pile of mulch laughs at me daring me to begin again. Day 2 gets off to a slightly slower start overshadowed by the need to pull all the droopy, brown annuals that didn’t fare so well in the season’s first freeze. Not to mention the mounds of red ants that seem to find me wherever I go and needed to be addressed first. Die, ants, die! Several hours later and I only succeeded in completing the new tree beds. Darkness begins to fall and I move on to the task of advent calendar creations. My hour spent attempting to create a festive calendar was rewarded by a shocked and excited face. I think Ben is excited for December 1st 🙂 So excited in fact that he agreed to put up the Christmas tree. The morning spent cleaning and preparing did not go to waste!


The days home are slipping away, but two workers are better than one. Saturday we finish the mulching both front and back (with almost 2 cu yards left, oops…), and we made a great start on our new dry creek bed… 4.5 hours later. Luckily we had a pot of homemade vegetable soup simmering all day to celebrate a hard day’s work and to soothe aching muscles. Not to mention the recorded IU football game and Notre Dame live that evening, both victorious thank goodness. With football in the background, hot chocolate and tea, pumpkin pie and Christmas candles burning, we decorated the tree. Not a bad way to spend Saturday night if I do say so myself.

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Just when our backs are about broken, we finish the creek bed on Sunday morning. I hope you like the outcome. More pictures can be seen by clicking on those below.

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Last tournament of 2010

Another tournament down on the books, unfortunately it’s not a win. The Southlake tournament lived up to its standards of being chilly but beautiful, we both have rosy cheeks as proof. More notably, it lived up to its standards of long and numerous matches, resulting in two (three!) very sore individuals.

Kara played women’s 4.0 doubles with Teresa and lost in the consolation finals on Sunday morning.

Ben and Steve played men’s 3.5 doubles round robin and had many good points, they just aren’t quite reflected in the scores.

Kara and Ben played mixed 3.5 doubles and toppled from their #1 ranking.

Summary of Saturday & Sunday

  • Kara: 5 matches, 12 sets, 9.5 hours, 2 wins. Consolation finalist for Women’s Doubles, Consolation winner for Mixed Doubles.
  • Ben: 4 matches, 9 sets, 1 win (very sad.  I blame my partners of course).  Consolation winner for Mixed Doubles.

Better luck next time ….

Fort Worth Major Zone

We survived the heat and exhaustion over the course of 3 days last weekend. I think I played about 10.5 hours of tennis over during tournament. It was about 98 degrees Sat and Sun, but luckily neither of us got sick.

You can review the results by going to the Women’s 3.5 Doubles, Mixed 3.5 Doubles, and Men’s 3.5 Doubles in the drop down of the page that pops up when you click on results. In summary, Teresa and I lost in the semi’s on Saturday, but put up a fight. Ben and I lost in the Finals Sunday night, but should’ve won. We were up in the second set and then lost it! Oh well, we still got some cool glassware. We’ll take a picture when we get home on the wkd.

After wrapping up yet another third set, we finally got home around 10pm Sunday to shower, eat and pack. We struggled through a long and stressful week in Oklahoma, but there’s light at the end of the tunnel. We’re currently on route back home and so close to a restful Saturday (Ben’s driving, don’t worry, I won’t crash).

Basketball Dream Come True

Ben received his long standing wish for a basketball hoop at home. Apparently when he was first house shopping many moons ago, one of the criteria (which he ended up abandoning) was to have a driveway suitable for a basketball hoop. This desire was not specified during the more recent house hunting, and yet, his unspoken desire was fulfilled. Thanks to some Christmas money, we finally splurged and bought ourselves a basketball hoop of our very own. Since we can no longer just walk down to Parr Park and use that hoop, we decided it was time. (What Ben didn’t realize was that half the fun of “playing basketball” in Grapevine was the benefit of having him to walk to the park with me!) came through and our hoop that was supposed to arrive on Monday actually came this morning. After many hours of hard work, some pricked fingers, and sore backs, we now have a completed basketball hoop in our driveway. Word to the wise: Don’t try to put together a glass basketball hoop with high winds, and no houses to block those winds. We had some close calls! Luckily the hoop is up and in one piece, and we are both still standing and without injury. (Let’s see if I can get out of bed in the morning.)

Dad, watch out, we’ll be practicing!


Last Tournament of 2009

This coming weekend is the last tennis tournament of the year (for us… that we know of): Southlake Fall Classic. The seeds were posted yesterday and we discovered that some people up above must be a little confused.  Ben and Kara Jacob, ranked #1 for the mixed doubles 3.5 bracket. Craziness. Kara Jacob, ranked #3 for women’s 3.5 singles. Here’s hoping that we live up to the expectations! Think good thoughts this weekend folks and we’ll post the results when we have them.

To catch you up to speed, we are taking a hiatus this session from the regular Friday night mixed doubles league in anticipation of the holidays. Kara’s first season on a women’s USTA league ended on November 7th with a victory for the team’s first string doubles.  Stay tuned for spring league updates in March.


Our apologies for the delayed update. We won!! Sadly, no trophies to show for all our hard work, simply $15 to the Southlake Pro Shop per win, we’re up to $45… that should buy us some tennis balls at least. Kara won women’s singles, and together, Kara and Ben won their first mixed doubles tournament. A long and brutal weekend of multiple 3 set matches, with black toenails to show for it, but what a victory. The mixed doubles final finished 10 minutes before the thunderstorms rolled in. Victory will provide encouragement for future tournaments to come in 2010.