Spring Break

Keith is wrapping up tax (busy season) so it was just the girls and I for spring break. It is quite a challenge to keep two preschoolers busy for over ten days. By the time I finished dinner/bath/bedtime routines by myself, I felt like I had just run a marathon.

We stayed busy over the break with school Easter egg hunts, a play date with friends from our gymnastics class, a trip to the dentist (Olivia has her first cavity), multiple trips to the library for books/books on CD and an insect talk, and a few trips to the nursery to plant Spring annuals and attempt a vegetable garden

It was a great break and I enjoyed a break the daily carpool duties but by Monday morning, I was happy to be back into our school routine.

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I also ran my first 5k in over a year. I love participating in Baton Rouge’s annual Fat Boy 5k. I finished in 20:30, just 8 seconds slower than my 5k last year. Despite being a little slower than last year, I felt so much stronger at the finish. I can tell the marathon training has helped tremendously with my endurance and ability to finish races strong. Summer goals include keeping up my weekly mileage and incorporating more strength/yoga/pilates into the mix. I am just hoping I can keep up some sort of fitness routine once the two little ones are out of school for the summer.

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Has it really been a year?!?

I am obviously not good at keeping up with a blog since it has been over a year since my last post:( Eeek, it has been a great year but I really would like to get back into posting things regularly so I can remember the early years of our family and life as a young mother. It has already gone by so fast and I am holding back the tears after paying my registration fee for Olivia to start kindergarten. What happened to my baby? Motherhood is such a strange mix of emotions. At times, I am at my wits end lacking in patience with my children. But then they will do something so sweet and my heart just melts. I am so thankful for grace because I certainly have my faults in parenting but by the grace of God my children so wake up loving me every day. Despite my doubts that I have as a parent and mother, my daughter still thinks I am the “best mom ever!”

I won’t even attempt to recap my past year in one post so a few pics will have to suffice…

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And yes, after an eight year hiatus from the marathon, I finally got my BQ..3:24 and some change:) So excited about Boston 2016.

New 10k Pr

I ran the Mardi Gras Mambo 10k last month and came out with a 10k pr.  Granted, I have only run a non-pregnant 10k once in the past 10+ years, I was happy to at least beat my time from 2011.

I had a very busy Friday (company in town for Valentine’s Day), kids who refused to rest/nap, and lots of chores to prep for visitors, so when I started off the race Saturday morning, I just felt tired. But, the weather was perfect (despite the hills on the course), and I just settled into a fast pace and tried to hold on for the race.

My splits were (6:51, 6:56, 6:53, 7:07, 7:04, 6:53, 1:52/6:42) for the last .28. I actually told myself to hold the pace back a little because after running the first three miles fast, I was scared of crashing and burning on the last mile. I was very tired in the last mile but I think with more training, I can hold onto the faster pace for the race. We’ll see:)

Total: 43:35/6.28 miles/6:58 pace and third female overall (all my fast friends ran the 15k).

I do think the longer runs and more rest now that Audrey consistently sleeps at night helps. I have a 5k and 10k scheduled in April so I’m hoping I can improve a bit on those times.

Now…if I can just survive the rest of busy season. Alright, off to finish coffee and fold some more laundry.

18 months and counting

A few weeks ago I celebrated my 34th birthday and registered my baby from preschool. Time is passing very quickly. So much that it has been since December since I’ve written anything. Once school started, life has been a flurry of trips to the grocery store, carpool lines, meal/snack prep, play dates, cleanup, laundry, and just adjusting to busy (tax) season now that Keith is working longer hours and Saturdays.

I can’t believe my baby is already 18 months. She is such a joy and a happy, easy baby. She has been prone to ear infections, something which never really plagued Olivia. So, I feel like I still rarely get into a good sleep cycle where so does not wake up during the night. Added on top of that a toddler who always has to wake up to be escorted to the potty and I still don’t feel like I am 100% back to normal and past the sleep deprived phase. But, I can see the light at the end of the tunnel.

Now that she is 18 months, she is all over the place!! For some reason, she seems busier than Olivia. She has phases where she climbs on tables and is into everything. She loves to pull everything out of the drawers, hide keys, lose remotes, and throw items in the tub. So, I will often head back into my bathroom and find a stash of keys, towels, toothbrushes piled in the bathtub. She is such a ham but a happy baby. We are definitely going through a separation anxiety phase. She is not too happy when we leave her with a sitter and cries every time I leave her in the gym nursery at the Y. Part of me feels so guilty but she is quick to calm down and it is so nice just to be able to squeeze in a quick workout during the day instead of my early am runs.

Olivia is doing so well too. At 4+ years of age, she is a happy, spunky, creative little girl. She loves to pretend, play on the playground, visit her friends at school, and just generally loves life. She is my social butterfly and always loves to be out and about.

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Grateful

I am sitting in my kitchen with my coffee. It is just after 7 am. I woke up early for a quick five mile treadmill run, hopped in the shower, dried my hair, and put on some comfy clothes and slippers. It is Christmas Eve and the house is quiet. I love these quiet mornings where I can sip my coffee and have some quiet time. I’m thankful that we don’t have to rush out the door this morning to head to carpool. I am thankful that I have the freedom and ability to enjoy Christmas with my family.

I did some baking earlier this week and I’ve noticed lately that I feel very grateful and content with my life.  I have spent years either wanting things I don’t have or stressing over small things that don’t really matter. As I was preparing a dish for our family dinner, I realized that  shifted my focus towards an attitude of gratefulness rather than looking at the things I don’t have.  And as expected, I actually actually feel more content and at peace with my life. I know this sounds so simple. But, when you are constantly bombarded with images on Facebook/Instagramof friends or family members who may have more, travel more, do more, etc., it is so easy to have an attitude of discontent where you feel like the grass is always greener on the other side.

A few things I am thankful for:

  • Family – both my own family and extended family. I’m so thankful for my hardworking husband and two beautiful, healthy girls.
  • Faith – I’m thankful for my church and for my bible study moms who have taught me so much and shared so much about their faith life.
  • Financial Stability – we are able to live a comfortable life and my husband has a job where I am able to stay home and still provide for the needs of our family.
  • Running – I’m so happy to have found an early morning run group. I love having time to meet friends for early morning group runs.
  • Coffee, music, sunny skies, cool fall days, lsu football, our home, good food/wine, martinis….

I read that the season of Advent, much like lent is a time of quiet preparation for the arrival of Christ. Although we tend to focus on the joy and festivities, it is also a time of reflection. I suppose I don’t always take the time for this preparation, but I do think that  pausing to reflect on things we are grateful for is a good exercise. And of course, realizing that Advent is the time to reflect on one of our greatest gifts/blessings, the birth of a Savior.

 

Catching Up

Fall and winter have been a blur this year. It seems I have been so busy just trying to keep up with life, that I rarely take the time to sit down, write, and reflect on my days. Olivia is a flurry of activity and emotion. She is so full of energy and emotion. I am learning to balance her personality. The meltdowns aren’t as traumatic  and she is growing into a little girl. The preschool days will pass by so quickly, but I love this phase in her life. She still wants to spend time at home with mommy. She loves playing pretend, running outside, taking afternoon bike rides, and baking in the kitchen. I love her sweet ways.

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Audrey has gone from a crawling baby to a busy toddler. She is full of life and is into everything. She loves hugs, her baby dolls, bath time with her sister, and snuggling at night before I put her to bed. Her laughter is so sweet.

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I love this phase of parenthood. I am finally starting to feel like I have life a little under control. I know it will all change soon. But for now, I’m just enjoying the fact that my Christmas shopping is complete and hoping to take some time this week to enjoy Christmas with my family. Hopefully, I can stay focused on the true spirit of the season despite all the holiday frenzy and hustling. Busy (tax) season will ramp up again for my husband in January.   Now that I am finally past my lower leg/shin injury and have recovered from my wisdom teeth removal, I can take this time to finally start building my mileage base and work on some running and personal goals in 2014. It is going to be a wonderful Christmas and hopefully an even better New Year:)

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I’m Out

After my workout in the dark last Thursday morning, I attempted an easy morning run with my running buddy, Katy. I always enjoy our easy morning runs and chats.

I have not run two consecutive days all summer because of my shins and I took the first step on the run and was once again in pain. It always hurts when I start and put pressure on it.

So, instead of attempting to let it heal by taking a day or two off and running when I only feel a little pain at the beginning of the run, I’m going to strengthen, ice, ibuprofen, and stretch until I am able to START a run without any pain.

Needless to say, I get stressed when I don’t run. I’ve eaten all the chocolate in my house. I think I naturally have a bit of an anxious, worrisome personality and running/exercise has always been my therapy of choice. My husband has been working all holiday weekend to get ready for his fall filing deadlines. My house is a wreck, the kids are a bit stir crazy. But it is so hot to be out in the heat of the day and after a few weeks scheduling fun activities/playdates/outings, I’m not in the mood to do any more planning.

Thankfully, school starts tomorrow and a new routine will begin. I don’t do well without structure so I’m excited about having a schedule and more to do’s. If I have too much free time, I tend to push everything off and plan on doing my chores another day.

Hopefully, by this time next week, I’ll be able to run again, school will be in full swing and all will be right in the world:)

Meanwhile, youngest is doing a great job of organizing my kitchen. She loves to take everything out of the cabinets, drawers, boxes and looks at me with her cute face, fully expecting me to clean it up for her so she can take everything out all over again:)