Once more unto the breach, dear friends, once more.

Young Wade and I shall set sail for Boulder, dark and far too early Friday morning. Years of anticipation and preparation, disappointment and frustration, all culminate to this weekend. My stomach is full of butterflies and my legs are bouncing with nervous adrenaline.

It's been an emotional week as I've reflected on the path to this point. I'm tired and changed in ways I hadn't anticipated when I first set out to prepare for an Ironman in 2011, totally ignorant and without an accurate sense of the respect this process was due. But I've carried on, and gained that respect, at a great cost, and now I'm pretty proud of myself for paying it.

Feel free to follow my progress on Sunday on the Ironman Boulder website. I'm number 1574.

Until then, enjoy some Pictures and Distractions:

Mr. Pants, majestic. 

Chilling with the nieces and nephews. 

Hannah Rose

My Pioneer Day watermelon. 

Somehow FOUR dogs ended up at my house on Pioneer Day.

Matthew and Mr. Pants celebrate the pioneers. 

Hiking through the wildflowers with these fine folks.

Picked up the wetsuit!

*****Stranger Picture of the Week

Q of C spotted at the SLC Farmers' Market! Thanks, Jennifer

Crap to distract you from whatever you're supposed to be doing:

Beautiful Ukraine in 27 photos. Thanks, Chad.

Cat running for president. Thanks, Haley.

Celebrity heads on pedestrians. Thanks, Margee.

Mysterious, abandoned Church shaped like a giant chicken. Thanks, Juniper.

Chicken legs. Thanks, Juniper.

Just go to about 12:35 on this video. You won't regret it. Thanks, Eliza.

Pooping cyclist started foothills fire. Thanks, Lauren.

Upside-down poem. Thanks, Kimbally.

I don't know what the hell I just watched. Thanks, Julie and Stephanie.

How I accidentally inherited a stranger's entire home. Thanks, Cara.

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If you would like to have something included on Pictures and Distractions, please email me at itjustgetsstranger@gmail.com.

~It Just Gets Stranger