Saturday, November 27, 2010

oh Gracie!

Oh Gracie!  This girl, she dances to the beat of her own drummer. 

She loves her sisters, but mostly enjoys playing independently.  She is on the brink of becoming a little girl, but still holds on to some of her baby/toddler ways.

The things that come out of this girl's mouth!  They make me laugh.  And they scare me.

"I don't want to wear the striped tights {ribbed}.  Tigers like stripes on their backs but little girls don't like them on their legs."

The other day Gracie whacked me on the bum out of the blue.  I said, "why did you do that?"  Her response was, "Well, I like when I hit my own bum."  At which point she stuck her bum out and slapped it.  Oh boy.
 

Last night we celebrated my youngest sister's birthday.  Don't all 24-year-olds want to dance to "Whip My Hair" and "Single Ladies" with their nieces and nephews?  It was a paarr-tay!  After saying goodbye to some family, we walked back into the house.  Gracie pointed to my sister and said, "can we keep her?"  Melt.Your.Heart. 

Oh, and tonight.  In the midst of another dance party (we're doing a lot of this lately) Gracie stopped and came and sat next to me.  She looked at me and said, "I need a break.  My nipples are sore."  WHAT?

I have no words.  Well, two words.  OH GRACIE!

I'm afraid this post might become a regular series.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

thankful

I have many things to be thankful for.  Wonderful children, a great family, awesome friends.  Our house is in the midst of renovations that are mostly *free* (once we live here 10 years).  We have a brand new automatic garage door, a new pantry and cupboards and drawers and more to come.

But, I'm dedicating this Thanksgiving post to my husband.  For whom I am extraordinarily grateful.

Bean is an amazing husband.  He contributes so much to the family.  He makes dinner about half of the week.  And he always does the dishes because that's what he loves.  He does all the yardwork and landscaping.  He does a lot of household and children's laundry (I fold and put away).

I almost never have to get gas in the van.  Bean willingly does almost all of our store runs.  Even when it's 3 times in one day.  Because he'll go for one thing.  And then we'll realize we need something else.  And then I forget to have him get milk, so he goes one more time.  Luckily the grocery store is two short blocks away!

He is a great support to my ministry.  It's impossible to be in vocational ministry without the support of your spouse.  He always is on kid duty on Sundays.  Getting three girls to church isn't always the easiest thing.  Bean is a fantastic father.  The girls love him so much.  When we are driving home after work they always want to know if he's home already and when they see his car, it's like we arrived at Disneyland.

As a working mom, in a not always traditional job, I need the help and support of my husband so much.  I rely on his involvement.  It's one of the reasons I haven't had a nervous breakdown.  Bean talks me down when I'm on the edge.  He listens.  He prays.

I am so thankful for the husband God blessed me with.  He is everything I wanted, and so much more.  Sure we banter and bicker.  We get annoyed with each other.  But in the end, there is no one else we'd rather share this life with--the ups and the downs.

These are the words to the first song we ever danced to.  Bean catches me, every time.

can you sleep as the sound hits your ears, one at a time?
an unspoken balance here,
unabridged for so many years
that i should stare at receivers to receive her isn't fair
don't worry i'll catch you
don't ever worry
your arms in mine, anytime
i wouldn't trade anything
you're still my everything
to my surprise, before my eyes, you arrive
don't worry I'll catch you
don't ever worry
i'm still breaking old habits, habits when you pulled the wool over me
i can see everything, everything remembering "jinx removing"
don't worry i'll catch you
don't ever worry
no need for reminding... you're still all that matters to me

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

let's get it started!

Tonight is the first night of my holiday!  I decided to take tomorrow off from work.  It would have been a half day, but the energy required for waking, readying and feeding children, dropping them off and getting to work just wasn't worth it!

This way I can have a relaxing morning, get my house in order, shop for baking and cooking and just soak in my kids.  Because that's what I love to do on my days off. 

I started my holiday with a fabulous run.  I got started a little later than intended, so I was under the gun to finish before it was pitch black and before my husband and/or children imploded.  Well, really they do fine without me; they just like when I'm there too.

My legs were feeling spry and springy, so I decided to take off at a faster pace than normal.  Then I decided to just push it the whole run.  If I can run 4-5 miles around 9:00/mile on a treadmill, I should be able to transfer that to the road.  There were a few times I had to slow down because I was getting a side-stitch, but mostly I was booking it. 

As it got darker and darker, that was even more impetus to be speedy.  I usually run on the street because the asphalt is better than concrete sidewalks.  But it got too dark for me to feel safe since I really wasn't dressed for night running.  I had to be careful on the sidewalks because there are uneven breaks and bumps from tree roots.

I was pretty happy when I finished to see that I ran almost 3.75 miles and my pace was 9:30.  I just need to keep pushing myself.  I have been thinking it would be fun to run the same half marathon for the next few years just for the sake of trying better my time each year.

It was a good start to what should be several great days.  No one is sick or injured as of right now.  family is coming in.

There are days that I'm overwhelmed and discouraged.  There are things I wish were different, and maybe one day will be.

But overall, I truly love my life.

Monday, November 22, 2010

running through my head

I see that this is my 500th post.  Had I noticed I was nearing that mark before, maybe I would have planned something special.  Let's be honest though, I would have had great intentions, but it probably still wouldn't have happened. 

So much in my life seems to be low priority right now.  High priority is just living, loving my kids and paying bills.  Well--loving God of course is the highest.  I have projects I'd like to complete, ideas for decorating and organizing, books I want to read.  But most days all that falls to the wayside for sake of survival.  It's a good survival, don't get me wrong.  I just wish I had time to do more than survive.

Last Wednesday night I dragged myself into Bible Study.  I was tired at the end of my work-week as I always am.  I saw an empty seat and dropped into it asking if it was free.  In jest one of the ladies said "yes, but it's going to cost you."  Sometimes I can come up with some witty in a situation like that.  Not that night.  All I could be was brutally honest.  Without even thinking about it I said, "it's the end of my work week and I have nothing to give."  Which was true.  We laughed about it.  But I must say I caught myself off guard with the exchange.

I've been thinking today on my optimistic spirit.  I guess it's good to be an optimist.  But that also means you trust too easily and aren't as cautious as you should be in some situations.  And it's so hard to understand pessimists.  I find myself being too judgemental.  And I repent and ask God to help me with my attitude.  And then I pray for those I have trouble understanding. 

God seems to be sending a lot of pessimists my way.  I don't really appreciate this learning experience.  I struggle with knowing how to relate to others who approach life differently.  Usually I just want to scream.  But I don't.  My other instinct is to climb inside my bubble and close out most of the world.  If I don't hear it or read it than it won't affect me.  But that's not a healthy approach either.  I'm still figuring it out I guess.

I'm really looking forward to the holiday this week.  I decided to take Wednesday off from work.  I have a lot of vacation time built up.  Which means I'm not using it.  I probably should use more of it.  I plan to get organized for cooking and baking and having my sisters in town.  They know my house is usually messy, and I think they have grace for me, but I like to pretend I keep things better organized when the come to town. 

I desperately want to experience the holidays this year.  Two years ago we were closing on the house during the holiday season and work began to ready it for us to move in.  I was also large with child.  It was a stressful time.  Last year we were more settled and we did have some special family moments, but Lily was still under a year old.  I was nursing and pumping which takes time and energy.  I had some intentions that were never realized.

This year, I want to put up Christmas lights outside.  Even if it's just a few strands on our porch.  I want to make Christmas goodies to share with family and friends.  I want to read the Christmas story as a family.  I don't want this year to pass by. 

My babies are growing and that makes me a bit sad.  Next year Lily will be leaving toddlerhood and talking in complete sentences.  There is something so precious to me about celebrating the holdays babies and young children.  It's especially magical for me.  In fact, had God not sent Lily in his timing, my timing would have been a babe born between September and November.  A snuggly newborn to photograph in a stocking for Christmas.

I digress.  I could talk about babies forever.

I am such a work in progress.  My brain is working overtime lately to figure me out.  To figure out what God is doing with this mess.  To him I know that I am a beautiful mess, but most days I can't see the beautiful part.  I see my flesh and how far off the mark I am.  There are so many paths right now I don't have the courage to travel down.  This hanging in the balance though, isn't so great either.

I need about two solid hours of loud, intense worship and a good cry.

Saturday, November 20, 2010

Pumpkin SURPRISE

I write a lot about fitness and running. 

But I strongly believe in balance and enjoying life.

Such as holidays.  They should be enjoyed.  With good food.

For the past few years, I have a tradition of burning a lot of calories on Thanksgiving morning.  It started sisters extended, with a homemade Turkey Trot we called the "Pie k".  You ran as many "k" as you could for the sake of eating pie later!  We even had tank tops we wrote our favorite foods on.  The next year it poured rain and our Pie k got moved to the gym.

I haven't quite decided what calorie burn I'll have on Thursday, but one of the reasons is this.

Pumpkin SURPRISE

It's a different take on pumpkin pie and it's so yummy.

1 lb can of pumpkin
1 12-oz can of evaporated milk
cinnamon
clove
ginger
(in whatever amount you like.  you can use the amounts on the can of pumpkin for pie--or use pumpkin pie spice)
1.5 cups sugar
4 eggs

Mix together and smooth into a 9x11 pan

On the top of the pie mix sprinkle 1 yellow cake mix
Melt 2 sticks of butter (1 cup) and pour evenly over the cake mix.
Top with pecans.

You can use whole pecans and lay them across the entire pan or you can chop them up as chunky or as fine as you like.  Or you can do half and half.  Or you can skip the pecans.

Bake at 350 for 1 hour.

Skeptical?  Give it a try early this week.  Bring it to work.  Send it with your husband to work.  Or you may just keep it for yourself.

Happy pre-Thanksgiving weekend!

Friday, November 19, 2010

Fit Friday: Race Wrap-up

I promise, this is the last time I will blog about this race!  Obviously, it's been pretty consuming--in a good way.  Just a few more things I want to process, and then I'm moving on!

I realized through this process that there is a lot of science and wisdom behind training schedules.  As I've said before, this was the first time I'd followed a training schedule.  For my birthday in June, Bean got me a subscription to Runner's World.  One of the first issues I got was all about Half Marathon's.  One article had several training schedules based on specific time goals.  I chose to do the training schedule for a two-hour half.  I felt that it was good goal because my typical pace was similar what I run.

I feel like the training schedule played a huge part in my ultimate time.  I knew from my speed days and tempo runs that I could run 8 and 9 minute miles.  I learned what my body felt like at different paces, which helped me gauge where I was at during the race.  Especially after I did my 13 mile training run.  It wasn't the greatest run and so I knew I could finish the half marathon in less time.

I haven't been able to run all week though, which has killed me!  My toe is very tender and I haven't want to subject it to shoes yet.  I think I may give it a try tomorrow.  My body and soul are aching to run.  I miss sweating.  This experience makes me thankful I haven't sustained any major injuries while running.

Up next, I want to keep running but also work on strength and toning. This takes much more discipline for me.  I have a three month membership to 24-Hour fitness that I can activate at any time.  I also have several boot camp sessions I've bought at major discounts, so those will help too.  I think strengthening my upper body and core will help me perform better in running--and feel better too!

Miss Rose is dying to play some computer games, so I'm done here for now! 

Happy Fitness!

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Tuesday, November 16, 2010

family photos

I feel a bit schizophrenic when it comes to family photos.  On the one hand, I want the picture perfect shot with everyone looking and smiling, every hair in place, with personalities shining through.  On the other hand, I'm all about reality.  Reality is, Miss Rose doesn't care for taking photos most of the time.  Gracie gets very goofy and we are lucky to get Lily to look at the camera and smile at the same time.

It's been a few years since I sent out Christmas cards.  Life has just been too overwhelming.  But this year, I am determined to do it.  I love receiving photo cards in the mail and I want to be on the giving end as well this year.

We have two shots at getting a good photo this year.  Opportunity #1 actually went really well.  I kinda want to share it today, but I haven't decided if I will.  I might save it for later :)

Shutterfly is giving bloggers the opportunity for 50 free photo cards this year and I'm so excited!  I've used Shutterfly for years for many things!  Photo prints, enlargements, photo books and calendars.  They are fast, easy and great quality!

Some of the top runners for our card this year are:

I love the classic, polished look of it!


This one is great for sharing multiple photos...if I have that many decent ones to share!

Another strong contender!

Check out all the photo card options here! There are also folded cards.

Too busy or overwhelmed this holiday season?  Then check out the Valentine's Day Cards!!  These would be so fun to send out.

Once I choose a photo and create a card, I'll share it here.  So, you'll just have to wait :)

Are you a blogger who'd like to get 50 free cards yourself?  Go here and sign up with Shutterfly  It's that easy.

Monday, November 15, 2010

I ran my heart out

This was a good weekend.  I achieved two goals, realized two dreams in my life.

I taught my first course.  The whole reason I went to seminary for my Master's degree was because I had an interest in teaching at the college level.  But things like marriage, jobs and babies have put goals like that on the back burner.

Our church recently began hosting a School of Ministry for those seeking ministers credentials.  I taught the first of a two-part Old Testament class.  I love the Old Testament and I loved teaching this class.  I've had some incredible, intelligent professors (as in: one's name is in many NIV Bible's).  Compared to them, I know so little.  But I have the heart for it.  And I think I was able to stir the student's hearts as well, and that was my goal. 

And of course, the update you've been perhaps waiting for.

I ran the race.  And for me, I ran it really well.  And I'm really happy and proud.

When I crossed the finish line, the clock read 2:12.  I knew it had taken me a few minutes to cross the start, so I was anxiously awaiting the chip results.  And they read:

2:12:21 2:09:25 9:53
I ran13.1 miles in less than 2 hours and 10 minutes and I my average pace was UNDER ten minutes an hour.  This is a BIG deal for me people.  That 10-minute mile has been a wall I couldn't break for a few years now. 

But I couldn't have done it by myself.  So, here are some shout-outs.

To my husband who has endured my 5:30am wake-ups for months now.  I know you rarely go back to sleep after I get up, but you never complain.  And you put up with me taking a few hours out of our only family day to run double-digit miles.

To my children, who don't like when mommy leaves on Saturday mornings, but are good sports.

To my sister, who invited me to go running for the first time 6 years ago.

To my high school friend, who I haven't seen since high school, but had her mom deliver her old treadmill to my house, when I put a silly plea out on Facebook (not thinking I'd get a response)

To my friend, who helps me find and get the right shoes.

To the Shredheads and those who Run Like A Mother for always inspiring me to be like you.

To the many blogs I follow written by running moms.


To the friends and family who registered for the race too.  It was a blast to see you before, during and after the race.  Let's do it again soon.

To the guy with spikey hair and the girl with the blonde ponytail who were my muses during the race.  I don't know you, but I got to know your backs pretty well.  I liked your pace and tried to stick with you.  I'd lose you, but then I'd speed up and find you again.  And when I had to stop at mile 10 and use the bathroom, my whole goal was to catch up to you again.  Which I did, and I finished right behind you.

Thank you.

I ran my heart out.  And almost ran my legs off too, judging by how I'm hobbling around today.  My blister got bigger (I think I'm going to have to drain it).  And I almost ran my toenail off.  Gracie finished the job tonight by pouncing on my foot.  My toenail was seriously hanging by two threads of skin, which I cut off.  Bloody mess, but not gushing.

I'm still so tired today.  But it was oh so worth it!

(yes, this photo is a microcosm of my life.  no child actually smiling at the camera.)

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

mommy days

It's Wednesday night.  By this time of the week I'm pretty exhausted.  Four full days of work and life.  Add in a sick baby girl this week--which means a little less sleep and interrupted sleep--and it's been a week.

Wednesday night is also a great night because it means "mommy days" are coming up.  When Miss Rose was little she always wanted to know what the plan for the day was.  Somehow I started identifying the day by who she would be with--especially since her week has always been split between different family members and a daycare for a while too.  The days I was home we called "Mommy days.'

This title has carried on of course, and now Gracie often asks if "today is a Mommy day".

I love Mommy days.  They love Mommy days. 

Tomorrow will be extra fun because Miss Rose is off school for Veterans Day.  I think we're heading to the Children's Museum.  I recently scored a family membership for 1/2 off.  We haven't ever been before, but I hear it's lots of fun--very hands on.  I'm sure it will be kind of busy since it's a holiday, but we'll give it a shot.

Over at Work, Wife, Mom....Life it's Working Mommy Wednesday and Julia wants to know about lunch habits!  I'm sure this is just going to be fascinating.

Well, I'm in the office three days a week.  I usually bring lunch two days and buy out one day.  Tuesdays are our staff meetings and we always go out to lunch afterwards.  I try to keep my meal at $15 or less.  Sometimes I wish I didn't spend that money each week, but it's an important time for fellowship and relationship with my co-workers.

When I bring my lunch, what I bring often depends on how much time I have to prepare it.  Peanut butter & jelly is a fan favorite.  Seriously.  I love that sandwich.  A great mix of protein and carbs, sweet and salty and I usually have it on whole grain bread.  A new favorite is using sandwich thins, toasting them and putting egg salad on them.  I also love this recipe--so easy and tasty.  I haven't made it in a few weeks.  I think it's time.  I also usually have a piece of fruit, and maybe something crunchy.  More often than not, I have a few small pieces of candy too, if I have to be honest.  I don't bring it...but one of the offices is always stocked and I have a hard time not going in there!

That's what's for lunch! 

Monday, November 8, 2010

sweetest days//cyber baby book

I've been terrible about keeping a baby book for Lily.  I have one.  And I will fill it in someday, using the things I've recorded here on my blog.

Lily has a pretty extensive vocabulary already.  Perhaps my memory is fuzzy, but it seems like she is saying a lot more at 22 months than the other girls were.  I'm sure much of that comes from being the youngest and trying to keep up with her big sisters.

Here are many of the things Lily says.  And the way she says them.

Hold you
Button--butt-y
Milk-miik
Water
Baby
Yes, yeah, no (often she says these in a sing-song voice...so adorable!)
Brush (for brushing teeth)
C'mere
Help you
Mine
Hi
Hello (usually refers to the phone)
Sprinkle (Sunday, in reference to a donut)
Baby
Dog
Stop
Mine
Names of about 8 family members and several friends too
Hug
Kiss
Happy to you (happy birthday)
Rocka-baby (Rock-a-bye-Baby)
Buckle (in the carseat)

There are so many more too!  She repeats most anything and adds it to her vocabulary.

  Lily loves to help push the stroller.  It's a lot easier when I have the smaller umbrella stroller.  But she insists on bending down to find something to push on the jogger too.

She is still incredibly attached to her Wubby.  That's the brand name.  But she calls it the Wee-Ooo.  It's pretty much the cutest thing.  I need to get it on video before she stops saying it that way.

How you see it in this picture is the ideal placement of the Wubby.  She wants the tag, close to her nose while she sucks her two middle fingers on her left hand.  Miss Rose and Gracie love finding her blanket for her because she gets so happy about it! 

Lily and Gracie fight over babies every day.  Whichever doll one has, is the one the other one wants.  Even though we must have like 20 dolls.  Seriously, I had like three dolls as a kid.  Which I still have and the kids play with.  But my kids have SO many already.  Only a few were actually purchased by us.

Lily is absolutely precious with the dolls.  She cradles them or puts them over her shoulder while patting their back and saying "shhhh."  She rocks them, wraps them in blankets, carries them in a sling (as pictured above) and feeds them bottles.  She sways and bounces.  It's incredible how much she has picked up on how a baby is cared for.


I am in denial that my sweet baby is going to turn two in just a few months.  I'm in denial that soon I won't have a baby any longer, I'll have a toddler.  I'm in denial that these last few months are my last months having a baby at all.  I'm such a baby-junkie.  If Bean wasn't snipped, I'd probably be talking him into another baby at this point.  Just one more, I promise.  Sigh.

I may just go pick her up and cuddle her while she sleeps tonight.

These are the sweetest days.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

on achieving balance (hint: impossible)


Earlier this year I had the pleasure of speaking at a mom’s group that a college friend helps lead.  While there, I also met another blogger.  I had come across her blog not too long before meeting her and was intrigued because she is a mom to three girls and I knew of her husband and their band from my college days also.  Check out her blog.  You’ll keep going back.

Anyhow, I digress.

Back when I spoke, I intended to share the content here on my blog.  But time got away from me, and then I couldn’t find my notes.  I thought I had it typed up on my computer, but all I could find was an outline with blanks.  And I couldn’t remember all the fill-in’s.  But last week while reading one of my Bible’s, I found my original notes!

So I can finally share them here with you.  I’m going to break it up though into a few days of posts because otherwise it will be too long.  I get wordy.

As moms, I think we often strive for balance in our lives.  We want to have all our ducks in a row.  We want to have a clean and organized home, homemade meals, laundry clean and put away, time for ourselves, time with our husbands and to be showered would be nice too.  All in the same day. 

When was the last time that happened for you?  Oh, and for me and other working moms---add in working to that balanced day too.

But honestly, it’s not realistic. 

Balance, is defined as a state of equilibrium or equipoise; equal distribution of weight, amount, etc.

This sort of balance, where there is equal distribution is almost impossible.  As a mom, as human being living on earth, things are always changing.  You can’t predict which day your baby will take that glorious three-hour nap giving you plenty of time to catch up on the housework as well as your favorite TV show.  Because it could just as easily be the day your baby is teething and refuses to nap more than thirty minutes at a time.

As a working mom, illness is what often throws the wrench into my “perfect balance.”  When my kids or my caregivers are sick, it often means I lose time at work.  So I’m trying to work at home.  Or trying to get more done in less time.  And the balance goes out the door.  Because then I get stressed, and I have anxiety over what I’m not getting done and because I’m caring for a sick child, I’m not getting anything else done.

The list goes on for what disrupts balance; car trouble, weather, broken appliances, or fill-in-the-blank.

I prefer a different definition of balance when it comes to motherhood.

Balance does not necessarily mean equal.  If your life were represented by a pie (mine would be apple crumb if you’re wondering), you are not going to be able to cut that pie in equal pieces each day.  Some days, one piece of the pie will need to be bigger than the others.

Three days a week, when it’s all said and done, about 11 hours of my day are devoted to work.  It begins when I wake up—and maybe run on the treadmill—and get myself and the kids out of the door (with Bean’s help too), work and then pick the kids up and get home.  Even once we are home, the time goes quickly and I’m tired from a long day, and trying to maximize the time I do have with my kids.  Housekeeping is usually low on the list—the smallest piece of the pie.

The days that I am at home, balance swings more towards housework and quality time with children.  The hardest days for me are those where I truly need downtime and I don’t push myself to accomplish much.  I feel guilty, selfish and lazy. I want to have that perfectly put together home and fully homecooked meal ready for dinner.  But the pace of my life catches up with me sometimes, and I need a semi-catatonic day to reboot.

Instead of feeling guilty that you aren’t getting it all done in one day, look at the big picture.  It gets done, when it needs to get done, when you can get it done, when what’s most important has already been done.

Balance is individual.  I am amazed at the status updates I read on Facebook from a college friend of mine.  She never stops moving!  When her kids are napping or sleeping at night, she’s doing laundry and housework.  When my kids sleep, I sometimes don’t do anything!  But obviously for her, as a stay at home mom, cleanliness and organization and completion of tasks are important to her. 

We all have our priorities.  We all have those areas of our house that need to be clean or organized, lest we go crazy.  We also have those areas that aren’t as important. 

My balance is extremely individual.  I am a working mom in a position where I am the only one who can do most of my duties.  Sundays are workdays for me.  Yet, I’m off two weekdays.  Sometimes my job requires evenings or weekends.  It’s not just a job, it’s a calling, a lifestyle, it’s emotionally demanding at times.

I get in trouble when I compare my life to the life of a stay-at-home-mom, or a mom who can leave work at work.  My life is unique.  Thus my approach to my life must be unique.  And the balance I must achieve varies from week to week and I am the only one who can determine it.

We all have different personalities.  Our priorities and needs in life are individual.  And how we cut that pie each day will be different.  And that’s okay.

Own your own sense of balance.  Don’t judge another mom for her sense of balance. 

Take a deep breath and live your life, according to how God made you.  Just like it says in Ecclesiastes, there is a time for everything.  It does not specify how much time for each thing.  Because it’s different for each of us.

Just to recap…
Balance is almost impossible
Balance does not necessarily mean equal
Balance is individual

More tomorrow!

Saturday, November 6, 2010

rough run

Most of my runs are pretty enjoyable.  It takes me a mile or two to find my groove, especially for longer runs, but I find it.  I may have minor discomfort or difficulty, but I push through and overcome it.

Today, I'm a mess!  I guess it's better that it's today, one week before the race, than on race day.

First of all, I just really wasn't feeling my run this morning.  But I knew that meant I needed to get it done sooner rather than later, so I began my slow preparations.  Finally I was on the road.  Just got to get 'er done was my mantra.  I didn't need to try to run fast, I just needed to get those 11 miles in.

I had a couple hot spots on my toes that bothered me off and on while running.  My stomach also kept cramping quite a bit, but I pushed through.  I'm telling 'ya, that 10 mile mark is my magic place.  I was still feeling decent at 10 miles.  That last mile to 11 though--I felt like I was running in quicksand, or wet cement, or water jogging.  You get the picture.

The worst was once I was home.  My stomach was not happy.  I have a ginormous blister on the inside of my left big toe.  I have a couple other small blisters on my right toes.  I chafed on the inside of my arms, at the bottom of my armpits.

My stomach has not let up.  I was somewhat functional, but not a "feeling great" functional.  I did make it on one errand this afternoon, but that's it.  I had to cancel plans I had tonight because of this darn crampy stomach.

I think the main culprit was milk and cereal.  I don't think I've had milk before a long run, and a few people said it can upset your tummy.  I haven't really been able to eat and drink today like I normally would after expending over a thousand calories.  Luckily, eating and drinking doesn't make me feel worse--but since it doesn't make me better, it's not too appealing.  I've still been doing it though.

I am just hoping that after sleeping tonight, I'll be all better in the morning.  This has not been a fun day.  And I need that blister to go away by the weekend.  Should I pop it?  Usually they dry out or pop on their own.  I may be questioning someone at the running store later this week.

Speaking of rough...we've had to say goodbye already to our dog.  Such a bummer!  We had him for all of three days.  But he was oh so sad because he was raised with other dogs and he was not ok with being the only dog.  All he did was lay and sleep.  He didn't want to play or interact with us at all.  He had a major case of depression.

Luckily Bean knew of someone looking for a companion for their dog--and it was love at first site today for them all.  So Lucky aka Reggie aka Tucker is in a new home now.  The girls are bummed, but they understand.  They were disappointed that he didn't want to play with him.  He was such a sweet, well-behaved dog.  But he's much happier now.

We're going to wait a bit now, to figure out it we want to find another dog or not.  We found out the day we were getting Reggie that we have to move out of our house for a week in December while they do lead abatement.  Yikes!! 

Here's hoping tomorrow is smooth all around!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Fit Friday: you are what you eat

Well, that's not exactly what I'm going to write about, but at 10pm at night, it's the most creative thing I can come up with!  I'm not going to be long-winded today.  I was looking back at previous Fit Friday posts and man I love to write long.

A local trainer shared this today on Facebook.

To keep Holiday pounds at bay... "Eat like a king for breakfast, a queen for lunch & a starving college student for dinner. 

Basically saying--eat a big breakfast, a medium lunch and a light dinner.

I don't know about you, but that's kind of opposite of my instincts and habits.  I want to eat a lighter breakfast so that I have as many calories left for later in the day.  Lunch is usually quick, while I'm working at my desk or while I'm rushing to feed the kids.  Dinner and late night is when I'm more relaxed and have more time to enjoy food.


But these last several months, I have realized the truth to the above statement.


When I eat more during the first part of the day, I am noticeably less hungry later in the day.  On Tuesdays I eat lunch out with my co-workers.  I do my best to choose items that are reasonable in calories and nutrition, but it's usually still a "big" lunch.  And on Tuesday nights, I'm rarely very hungry for dinner.  In fact, often I don't eat a full dinner--just something light.


If I have protein as part of my breakfast (eggs, plain yogurt or cottage cheese) I don't get hungry until lunch.  Protein is a must for lunch too, or else I'll eat my way through the afternoon.


My goal during the holidays is always to maintain my weight.  I don't deny myself holiday foods or meals.  I'm sure I'll eat seconds (or thirds) of desserts and things I don't always indulge in.  Life and the holidays are for enjoying and I have no desire to deprive myself.

When I know there is a special meal or event coming up, I make a point to eat well the rest of the day.  Dinner out isn't a reason to eat crappy the other meals of the day.  



Let me clarify though, I don't eat great 100% of the time.  Maybe not even 75%.  That's one reason why I love running--it counteracts the handfuls of kettlecorn I ate today, or the dips into the kids candy yesterday.  I eat a donut about once a week and Bean usually talks me into ice cream one night a week.  When I bake something (which I love to do) I'm in big trouble, because I love homebaked goods!


We should enjoy life.  Which means enjoying food.  But not to the detriment of our health.  Because giving our bodies the nutrition and activities they need is enjoyable too.


What's your plan for making it to the holidays without losing the ground you may have gained in 2010??

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

honest

How often are you honest with yourself?  With others?  I spend a lot of time being not honest.  Mostly with myself, but that bleeds over into my interactions with others.  It's not that I want to be dishonest.  It's usually that I don't like my emotions or opinions.  So I pretend they aren't there.  Or that they aren't that big of a deal. 

But I know that's not healthy.  And so I've been trying more to be honest.  Mostly with myself.  I'm finding that when I'm honest with myself, God can speak to me more. 

If I'm being honest, being a working mom is really hard.  And it breaks my heart to leave my babies, even though I have an ideal work situation.

If I'm being honest, I know that I'm supposed to be a working mom right now.  If I wasn't working, we wouldn't have been able to buy our home, which also provides a home for my parents. 

If I'm being honest, I hope and pray that by working now, someday in the future I'll have the opportunity to not work.  I firmly believe that God gives us the desires of our heart as we delight in him, and that desire is as strong as ever, so I know it will be fulfilled one day.

If I'm being honest, I'm thrilled that God has provided for us to have thousands of dollars of renovations on our house, that we won't have to pay for thanks to grants.  I know that's one of His blessings, and a sign that we are right where we are supposed to be in life.

If I'm being honest, my kids are rather disrespectful with their speech and attitude towards us.  We are trying so hard to correct this, but are at a loss sometimes.  It's embarrassing.  I blame myself.  I blame my fatigue from such a full life and laziness too.

If I'm being honest, I'm not good at "playing with" my kids.  I feel like I should be.  But I'm not.  I love having them around and interacting with them.  But I feel like I need to play more.

If I'm being honest, I am richly blessed.  Rick Warren has said "no matter how bad things are in your life, there is always something good you can thank God for."  Things in my life aren't bad.  Sometimes I get overwhelmed and I feel like they are.  But I have so much to be thankful for.

If I'm being honest, I am a work in process.  I will always be.  I just want to love God, love my husband and raise my children to love God too. 

I like being honest.

**this is linked up with Julia for Working Mommy Wednesday.

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

running through my head

It's that time again!  Where I share all the things currently running through my head.

Tomorrow is a big day in our household.  We are finally signing paperwork for the housing grant that will help us finish our house.  I've never done a full blog on all we've done with the house so far.  Someday I will.  We've been in the process for this housing grant for a year or something now.  But, if we live here for 10 years (which we will) it's free money and I'll wait as long as necessary for it.  We'll finally have updated windows (instead of the original 1954 single pane glass), an automatic garage door, perhaps new tile in the bathroom and kitchen, some landscaping and irrigation stuff--along with more. 

We are also getting a dog tomorrow.  We finally decided to just do it.  We have an opportunity to get a 2-year old Golden Retriever.  Bean and the kids really want a dog, and I'll enjoy it too.  Bean and I both feel a bit of panic and excitement over it.  If for some reason it doesn't work out, we'll just have to find the dog another home and move on.  But we think it will.  We want it to.  We are currently searching for a new name for the dog.  Bean has naming rights (since I had veto power with the kids).  So we'll see!

Last night I slept 8 solid hours.  Which was my first night of solid sleep since last Wednesday night.  Lily has been waking and crying every night and has ended up in our bed for at least a period of time.  My solid sleep was so good that for the first time in weeks I turned off my alarm when it went off for my run.  This was one case a little more sleep was more valued than a few miles.

I'm excited for the coming holidays.  I love the family togetherness and baking.  I finally feel like I'll be able to decorate and enjoy them all now that Lily is almost 2.  I have felt so scattered the last few holiday seasons.  Two years ago I was 8 months pregnant, packing up a house, buying a new house that needed renovations before we moved in.  Last year my parents had just moved in, and I still had a baby and a toddler.  This year I have a toddler and a preschooler, which feels more manageable. 

I won a 90-day membership to 24-Hour Fitness today!  One of my favorite blogs is Money Saving Mom.  I also follow her on Twitter and Facebook.  She posts a lot of freebies and deals and great coupon match-ups.  Everything is really simple to follow and a lot of the freebies come with coupons.  I happened to catch a tweet today (while I was in a meeting, ssshhh) about some great giveaways.  I happened to click on the 24-Hour Fitness one at the right time and was one of the first 1,000 (I think) entrants.  I went back to try to get one for Bean, but they were gone by then.  I am super excited about this because it will take me through the holidays and give me something new to do after my training and half marathon.

We recently subscribed to Netflix.  I love it because we can watch stuff on the computer as well as the TV.  We stream videos through our Playstation 3--finally a good use for it, since Bean rarely plays it and only uses it to watch Blu-Ray (which is really the reason he wanted it years ago in the first place).  The kids are enjoying watching new movies and it was great while Lily was sick last week. 

After work when I picked the kids up from my mother-in-law's, they were in the van waiting for me (I drive her car to work).  As soon as I opened the car door there was a chorus of excited girls yelling "mommy".  That is the best sound in the world.  My three girls, so excited to see me and be with me once again.  They are my world.

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