Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Kevin Black Memorial Training Camp

over the weekend, we over packed our trusty westphalia to spend three days at west beach resort on orcas island. our team, alki-rubicon, holds a training camp there every year in an effort to get our winterized butts (soft and pear shaped) in gear for the up comping race season. we do put in a good effort on the bikes...but really, our efforts are more about beer and bonfires than anything.

i love this tradition and spend a great deal of time fretting about what kind of shape i'm in, and whether or not i'll be able to hang with the boys. this year, however, i found myself in a grim post partum state, and i scaled back on my goals. it was a nice to not stress while riding, and i found that the rides i did do where challenging enough! what i missed the most, however, was grandma erbeck's presence....her grandmotherly skills tend to make the weekend a lot easier and aaron and i had some serious slack to pick up.

first of all...let's talk about extreme packing. extreme packing occurs whenever you're packing for a family of four plus a dog, multiple sports (and two disciplines within one of the sports), and you live in the northwest (it could rain, it could snow, it could be warm...you must prepare for all weather conditions regardless if it is january or july).

here's a brief summary of our extreme packing:

5 bikes (mountain bike for me, road bike for me, road bike for aaron, road bike with fenders for aaron, scoot bike for true)

3 skateboards (regular board for aaron, long board for true and aaron, regular board for true, plus a bag of pads, etc, all necessary for riding at the skate park)

5 helmets (cycling helmet for me, cycling helmet for aaron, skateboard helmet for aaron, skateboard helmet for true, cycling helmet for true)

1 suitcase (for aaron, full of cycling clothing....jerseys, shorts, knickers, jackets, arm warmers, leg warmers, socks, shoes x 2, pain killers)

1 soft bag (for aaron, full of his civilian clothing...remember, this is the northwest and requires packing for all conditions)

1 messenger bag (for me, full of cycling clothing....see aaron's list above, duplicate)

1 duffel bag (for me, full of civilian clothing, in full preparation for ANY event, in ANY weather..plus shoes to go with it all...this was a BIG bag)

1 large plastic tub (for true and luca's clothes...3 changes of clothing a day, plus jackets for any weather, mittens, hats, a bazillion socks, diapers, pjs)

1 small backpack (or *packpack* as true calls it....crammed with books and toys for the kid...you never know what he can or can not live without for the weekend. and yes, i failed. i forgot to pack his shovel, his chika chika boom boom, his cement truck, and his red wheel, as opposed to the yellow one which i DID pack)

2 canvas bags (packed with groceries, including every snack known to mankind. and yes, i failed again, i forgot the blackberry jam)

1 cooler (filled with beer, barely enough room for milk and yogurt. we do, after all, have our priorities)

7 blankets (true's two must have blankies, aaron's must have wool blankie, my must have down comforter, luca's must have fleece swaddles)

2 pillows (my must have, and true's must have that grandma erbeck made for him...we can't leave home without it)

2 diaper bags (one cute one for me, one plain one for aaron)

2 baby carriers (a sling, which luca prefers for when he's fussy at night, a bjiorn which i prefer for his daytime outings)

2 car seats (one for true, one for luca)

1 white noise machine (absolutely vital if i am to get any sleep at all....otherwise luca is up every two hours demanding to be fed)

1 high res expensive camera (that we did had to dust off to bring and that we did not use....hence the single photo along with this post, taken at my instance with aaron's i-phone)

i think that's it....keep in mind it took us longer to pack than it did to arrive at our destination, which included a drive in full traffic and a ferry crossing! aaron took a good look at the van and declared that 1/3 of everything we own was in the van. i recolied at the thought but that had to concur.

the weekend was worth the effort and it was great to catch up with all of our team and their families. we're pretty lucky to be on a team that recognizes the importance of significant others and kids. it's not all about the bike!

*** note about the name of our camp, Kevin Black Memorial Training Camp. Kevin was on our team, and a good friend to both aaron and myself. he was recently killed in a collision with a van while riding his bike to work. this leaves two young girls without their father, and a sea of people without their friend. we miss him dearly, and it feels right to name a great tradition in his honor. i'm certain he would approve of weekend festivities, especially the beers and bonfires.

here's to you Kevin, wherever it is that you may be.


To Blog or Not to Blog said...

I think I'm speechless! Wow....... There aren't really words to express my amazement at the packing adventure. I did note that the cement truck is still in heavy rotation, though maybe not as good as the red wheel.

James m. Erbeck said...

Grandma and Grandpa Erbeck say we are happy that True and Luca are "shovel ready" for any stimulating big adventure that Mother and Dad can think up.