Lil’ bit Similar, yet So Dissimilar

This past week I got to experience the very different experiences of alpine downhill skiing and Nordic cross-country skiing; and sometimes on the same day. Cross-country skiing can divide people into a group that loves it or hates it. Which one are you? So, the kids are on spring break and we headed out to Vail, Colorado this week. Beautiful Gore Range Mountains Kai and I try to take the kids skiing when we can...

Hate to Admit it, but…

Stretching has always been one of the most undervalued components of my workout routine. It has been this way for years. I was an athlete as a child and through my young adult life, and not to finger point, but my basketball, soccer and tennis coaches in the 80’s did not exactly consider stretching an important part of our practice time. We held poses for a count of 20, and got through the simple, rushed...

85th Anniversary

A disease without a name is a disease not on the map. 85 years ago, this year, Dr Asbjørn Følling put phenylketonuria, aka PKU, on the map. Følling’s Kennedy award It may sound like a small thing to describe and name a disease, but with a name comes discovery, understanding, and a future. People who live with undiagnosed disorders spend a large amount of their time searching for answers and help. Once a discovery is made, a...

Here is How it Goes

Below is a typical and very personal exchange of questions when two PKU parents meet for the first time. I learned this week that this happens in America OR in Norway. It is unusual to get so personal with a stranger, but there is a bond that parents of rare diseases share. I felt this in Norway. It was automatic, even across cultures. You get real, and you get real fast. There is no reason to...

Updates from Oslo!

Norway rocks! Oslo is beautiful, especially the architecture and waterfront situation. Norwegians love their cross-country skiing, so I’m excited that they are excited about my project. My friends Kristie and Ida had told me several times before I came on this trip that Norwegians love skiing. It took about 48 hours in Norway to confirm that the love is real. Here is my proof! On my first afternoon walk around Oslo, I counted 3 people walking down...

Formula, Formula, Formula

Tia had some tough moments on a recent trip to Montana. Traveling can be hard with PKU. Traveling can be hard with many restricted diets and health concerns out there, but traveling with PKU carries some unique challenges. Take her formula, for example. Tia drinks a prescription based medical formula 4x a day. Ideally the formula is refrigerated. This formula is everything. She has had it since birth and it gives her 80% of...

Can this Extrovert Embrace Solitude?

I skied for about 3 hours yesterday on the pristine cross-country ski trails around Big Sky, Montana. If you haven’t been there and love to downhill or cross-country, I HIGHLY recommend it. There are miles and miles of the best groomed x-country trails I have seen anywhere in the US to date. Kai and the kids said the downhill skiing was stellar as well. I’ve been getting into podcasts lately on my cardio days. I...

Positivity + Resilience

Kai and I took the kids down to our grad school alma mater, UNC, this past weekend to go to the Tarheels basketball game and walk Tia around the campus. The reality that Tia is just over 2 years away from heading to college is crazy. How is this even possible?! The mental count down is ON. How many holidays do we have left together? How many spring breaks all together as a family?...

Ibuprofen please!

A big part of my adventure to cross Norway is the journey to get there- the 12 months leading up to my departure from the border of Sweden. My number one job, besides fundraising, is to get my body ready. My friend Jonathan Terrell who did the World Marathon Challenge introduced me to his ultra-fit trainer, Tiffany Nesfield. Tiffany is an inspiration from the minute you meet her: besides being in incredible shape,...

Crossing Norway

Join this adventure to help fund a cure!

This February, I am mounting cross-country skis at the Sweden/Norway border, crossing Norway west in nine days. Hauling a sled, I will ski nine hours each day and sleep on the snow at night. I am doing this for my daughter Tia who was born with the rare disease, PKU.