Sunday, December 21, 2008

Lists

I am living my life on lists right now. They are keeping me on track and completing my tasks. So, I thought I would make a list to catch up on my blogging......

* Noah tells his teacher, "The Bible tells us it is not nice to tease" after she tells him she is going to hang him up by his ears if he gets three strikes that day.

* I am busy playing Santa and Santa's elf

* I have about 4 projects going on at church (one would be the planning a military appreciation banquet and everyday I wish Tracy and Courtney were here!)

* My mom is here for 23 days! It is nice to have a babysitter at my beckon call!

* Kevin's mom gets here Tuesday - another babysitter at my home! YAY!

* I am attempting a snowboarding lesson on Monday to hopefully not repeat my you-tube worthy performance of last year

* Kev and I went cross country skiing - I LOVE it. I am not sure about this downhill thing on Monday

* Caleb is becoming more of a talker than Noah. Oh yes, his vocab is quite extensive and very funny at times.

* I look at our Christmas tree and realize how blessed we are that we have so many presents for each other and others we know and more blessed that this time of year is when most of everyone is cherishing the birth of Jesus

* I have pics of the boys to post soon. Hopefully, I can find time to sit down at the computer upstairs and get it done.

Merry CHRISTmas and Happy New Year!

Wednesday, November 26, 2008

What the......

Ok, I have deemed it, that today someone is out to get me. Here are just a few events of the day

*On the way to Noah's school this morning, the car in front of me slams on the breaks, so I must quick stop on ice glazed roads - so I veer to the side and into a snow filled embankment. All this to miss a moose. Ok, whatever

*I had to get a shot of penicillin - yeah that's nice. I have a sore bum now. I also have this stuff I have to gargle that numbs everything: your tongue, throat, esophagus, etc. If you have really bad heartburn, let me know I'll ship you something that will for sure take care of it.

*On the way to pick Noah up from school, on the same ice glazed roads, the guy in front of me, his tire, rim and all, comes off of his car. Yep, completely off and he is scrapping pavement. So, here we go sideways down the road, to miss his crummy tire.

I am thankful the car is in one piece and my children are safe.

On an upbeat note...
I am doing laundry and I dump a load on the bed to fold. Noah asks is he and Caleb can play in the boat (aka the laundry basket). Sure. A few minutes later I hear Noah say, "Hold on Caleb". I go running to the top of the stairs. Too late. Caleb took his first and hopefully last boat ride down the stairs. He looked a little confused after his topple on the landing. That is where I found them, thank goodness we have a landing, and there is Noah saying, "You don't have much more to go, come on Caleb". Yep, the laundry basket is now put up in a very high place.

Saturday, November 22, 2008

Jet Lag

Whew! 6 fun filled days at Disney, in combination with 2 days of flying with a little bit of a lingering cold, can really tucker a girl out! However, I can never get enough Disney! Seeing the kids experience things for the first time, and find the Disney magic is just so cool.
For most of the "big" rides you have to be 40in tall. Noah is 39. I was going to try and sneak him through. They stopped us on them all, and their measuring system is a little off. Their bar was well 2in over his head and I measured him just before we left and I know he did not shrink on the way to Fl. Well, when we got to Kali River Rapids, the requirement was only 38in. We walked up, Noah stood proud and tall at the measuring bar. The guy working the entrance then said, "ok little man give me your hand for a stamp and you need to wear this bracelet". Noah's eyes got so big, and in his loud booming, full of pure Disney magical excitement, he says, "Does this mean I get to go?!!" I reply with the confirmation, and boy did he look like he was walking 4 inches taller. He loved the ride so much, we rode it 4times in a row. Yes, the crowds were light, and we didn't even get off the ride. 4 times around the rapids. He was in heaven. His first "big" ride. Later I saw a shirt in the star wars area that read on the front, "Measure me by my size, do you?" and on the back was a pic of the measuring bar with mickey ears hanging on it. I almost bought it for Noah, but unfortunately they didn't have his size.

Caleb was so funny. He loved seeing Mickey, Minnie, Donald, and Goofy (which Caleb says OOF-ee). He would squeal with delight but would only get about 1ft away from them. He didn't want to hug them like Noah does. Caleb just handed them his autograph book, and squealed! It was so cute. Mickey and Buzz were by far his favorite. He danced when the parades came through and kept a huge smile on his face. I have to say the kid is so cute that the characters and performers would always find him, come over and just entertain the kid! He was a pro at the Crystal Palace, where we dined with the characters. He joined in the parade and walked around like a champ. It is hard to believe that just a year ago, he was at Disney, only three months old, wearing his brace, and not crawling or walking, just slobbering! WOW!

Not only did the kids have a great time, but Kev and I did too. We got to have some great company to join us (some of a great great friends from SC met us there) and we got to catch up over a nice game of farming fury! HEE HEE!! If you have never played The Farming Game, well you are missing out on a heated game of hard core sarcastic threats over cherry crops, cows, and hay! Love it!!

The first couple of days were great; welcoming warm sunshine and humidity. However, this quickly turned south, when a cold front moved in and gave us temps in the 50's! I packed tank tops and shorts - not long sleeves, pants and jackets. This just gave me a good excuse to get some really cute Mickey gear!

On a sour note: We were 3 days into our vacation, at Epcot, seeing "the world". I am doing my usual, snapping pics. When something happened. I don't know what happened, but something did, cause it made me move my arm in a very quick downward motion. Well, the wrist strap on my camera, which was attached to my wrist, very securely I might add, was no match for the force of the downward motion of my arm. The camera flew off of my wrist and yes, yes, it smashed into the ground. I have only had this camera for 3 months!!! I pick it up. YES, it is still working! It worked fine the rest of the evening. The next day however was a different story. Giving the camera a break was what it needed to finish it's job and completely break. BOO camera BOO! Thank goodness for disposable cameras and my iphone. It helped us finish out the vacation with somewhat passable pictures. At least I have memories somewhat captured, right?

So, now we are back in AK. Watching the snow pile up, and getting ready for the holidays. Thanksgiving is HERE??!!! Wow!
Just a few things I am thankful for:
my God, my husband, my kids, my health, my husband and kids health, my family, my friends, where I live, and so many more abundant blessings God has bestowed on me and my family.
This is such a great time for reflection and appreciation. Remember what this holiday is about and give thanks and be thankful.

I would be VERY thankful if someone would help me clean my house! Any takers??? :)-

Happy Thanksgiving y'all!

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Some of my favorites


Little brother in on the action


Noah's 4yr old portraits. Can you believe it, 4 years??!!

Sunday, November 2, 2008

Lately....

*Noah turned 4

*Caleb learned to count to 5

*I have had photo shoots almost every weekend and am booked into December!

*We are preparing to visit DisneyWorld

*We had a birthday party for Noah with firefighter Kevin (aka Daddy)

*I learned to knit, somewhat, I finished a hat for Caleb, but it was too small.

*Noah now uses the big people seat belt in his new booster car seat

*Caleb says "cool"

*Kevin has been flying like crazy

*I have been swimming at least 2-3 times a week - learning to swim efficiently is tough

*Caleb is asking to go potty and has succeeded at the "poo-poo" (once) - I know you all love to read about bathroom experiences!

*Caleb was a zebra and Noah was a dragon for Halloween

*maybe, just maybe pics will come later.

Friday, October 24, 2008

In a flash

My October has been insane. I can't believe it's gone, almost.

I'm still check my blog. I just never have a chance to just sit and write my thoughts.

Have a very busy weekend.

I will not say that I hope it slows down, cause let's just face it. Every time I say that, life speeds up.

Goodbye Oct.

Thursday, October 2, 2008

Sporadic

Here I am again....yep no regularity. Just when I can. I really don't have time to be typing this out but I will forget some funny things if I don't.

Noah ran into the living room last Friday night yelling, "There is a deer in our tree! There is a deer in our tree!" There is a tree that is right in front of the window in the front yard. I reassure Noah, that there are not typically deer around, but then WAIT, IT'S A MOOSE! Kids run to the window! There it was a baby moose, yes a baby, eating the branches out of our tree. Let that run by you again.....a baby moose eating the branches out of the tree. Yes, the babies are huge! So, we were wandering, if that is the baby, where is the momma? Hmmmm. We walk to the back of the house, oh and look. There she is. She was right at our back yard. If we didnt have a fence she would have been in our yard.
Well, we were watching Murphy, Krista's dog. She was there picking him up taking in the moose watching as well. Then the light bulb goes off over Krista's head - I will let Murphy see the moose. uhhhmmm, yeah. It took Krista and Kevin pulling on Murphy to get him back in the house, cause ya see, those moose looked like fun for chasing and Murph was going fetch one.
So, ya know we went in the dining room to watch out the back window to see mama moose. Well, Kevin goes in the back yard, closes the door - Murphy stays in the house looking out the window with me, the kids, and Krista. Well in all the excitement, Noah left the window and went out back with his daddy and DID NOT close the door. So, Murphy saw this and darted out the back door. Krista and I were so wrapped up in Caleb's excitement at the mama moose, that we freak out when we see Murphy - flying through the back yard, jumping on top of our four ft fence, to get him some mama moose. Then we see Kevin sprinting after Murphy all while mama moose looks like the fence is small potatoes, she is going have some labrador. Well, mama moose decides she is going get baby moose instead of Murphy, since Murphy is being pulled back by a mud covered Kevin, cause you see, it is the rainy season here and our backyard is a swamp, and sprinting in a swamp, well that just gets messy. Oh the excitement random moose bring to our lives. Krista now knows, Murphy and a friendly romp with a moose just don't mix. :)

I have my first girl's night coming up. I am so excited!! No husbands, kids, just the girls. Now all my friends back in SC know how important we take girls nights. This is my first one since SC! I am very ready. The hubbys are going to men's retreat, so we all thought, no better time than this to take advantage of girl time.

Our new nephew should be arriving any day now, hopefully today. Noah and I were making a Christmas present for Andrew. Noah kept saying "but I don't know him". Finally he starting getting it and saying, "William is going to be a big brother like me?" and "I will be older than Andrew", and lots more things. It was sweet. He is wanting to meet him really bad, so let's get on the ball Jillina! hee hee. UPDATE: Baby Andrew arrived safely Friday morning Oct 3. He and parents are doing great. Can't wait to meet you little guy!!!

Noah is still loving school. I have pictures where they had a little party for Johnny Appleseed's bday. They had a little parade and had an all out apple day. It was cute.

Caleb has become quite the talker (big surprise!) and all around meanie. He got put in time-out 3 times last night in his bible class at church. Apparently, his teachers are letting his cuteness get in the way! Looks like Caleb is going to present to me some parenting challenges I never had to face with Noah. Yay me. Yipee. Woo hoo. seriously. Right now I am the mom of the 1.5yr old bully. :(

I have pics to post but not today, I am already running behind. So later.........

Monday, September 22, 2008

Where have I been?

As soon as I got back from Hawaii I hit the ground running.

Meetings at church, craft project hell, and now a speaking engagement. WHAT!

So, I agreed to be on a committee at church and thought I would help out this program by making a wall organizer to help them out. No big deal. Jo Ann's is a crafter's friend. So, for 3.5 days I channeled the craftiness of my SIL and BFF to get this out like it looked in my head. Sometimes I get these great ideas, and um yeah, they don't turn out looking like what my brain imagined.

So here it is......

It looks way better in person. The pockets are on a denim background. I think I actually did a good job this time. So, after I finished this I had to start working on the topic to be discussed at the ladies night out, which is tonight, the same night this wall dealie-o had to be completed.

I have never spoke at any function, so please pray for me. I am gonna need it. Sheesh.

So, I am starting to feel the busyness of life. Noah has school 3 days a week, I try to fit in the gym while he is at school, the ladies functions, squadron functions, teaching at church, and trying to make time for kids, husband, and miscellaneous items to make for school, church, and home. Oh and I met with a personal trainer today, cause I am gonna do a triathlon. Yeah, that's right. I have gone crazy.

However, this personal trainer is exactly what I needed. I have hit my plateau and I have tried and tried to get over it, with no success. He and I worked together for about an hour this morning and I feel like I fell down a mountain. Ya know, like on tv, when folks go tumbling down a mountain and they just keep flipping, and pounding into the ground. And when the tumbling is over you know that person is gonna be in some serious pain. That would be yours truly today. URGH! However, I asked for it.

So, I will try to get Skinny Tuesday back up and going. Hopefully after tonight I can get back into a groove. It is bad, when my BFF calls me and says, "uhm, are you ok, cause you are not updating your blog". Ok, my bad. I am the blog pooper here lately and I won't promise but I will try to get a little better.

Friday is out, cause that is Johnny Appleseed's birthday and we are having a party! hee hee. Seriously, we are!

Monday, September 15, 2008

Hawaii

There are not enough words for this vacation. Our room was terrible, but hanging out with my boys on the beach can make up for anything. Kevin had to work all but a day and a half, but we made the most of it. I love Oahu. Noah learned how to use a boogie board, and Caleb did a little body surfing with his momma. I am sufficiently sunburned, hopefully enough to avoid skin cancer but give me a little color through the Alaskan winter. I can't wait to go back!
Here is a little summary of all the fun we had and places we visited:

Honolulu Zoo
Dole Plantation
Matsumoto Grocery - best shaved ice in the world
Waikiki beach
North Shore beaches
Duke's - great place to eat
Hanging out with the Cosme's
Snorkeling on the North Shore
Luau at Paradise Cove

The boys gave it all they had and are sufficiently worn out. We got home about 2am this morning. The boys and I were waiting for Kev to bring around the car to load it up and when Kev drove up N had a break down. Apparently, N loved our rental car soooo much he was devastated that we did not have it in Alaska. Amidst all the tears he told us he wanted us to sell the van and by a SUV. It was so funny! Bless his little heart, he loves those rentals.
We can't wait to go back!

Laid Back

Usually I am laid back when it comes to politics. I never force my issue and if someone disagrees with my position I do not argue with them or try to change theirs. However, I read an article this morning that just fires me up.
Why is it that celebrities are stupid and selfish enough to blast a candidate over ONE issue. This particular celebrity is just completely unintelligent in her argument because it is selfish and based on ONE issue, her homosexuality. Lindsay Lohan is speaking out against Palin and if she was arguing on something more besides her gayness maybe she wouldn't look so stupid. Seriously, what about our economy, taxes, iraq, pakistan, iran, education? No apparently for some in the Hollywood area, abortion and being gay is the only important issues and the health of our nation is really not that big of a concern. Vote Obama cause he is for gays and abortion? GIVE ME A BREAK! This just goes to show how seriously dumb the celebrity scene is, it does not matter about the nation, just what is good for the celebs and their insane lifestyles.
Just because God blessed you with a mouth does not mean He blessed you with intelligence. And BOO on the media for putting out such crap. Seriously, what impact does lohan have on the political scene? Yep, none. Just another pretty face spewing her dumb-ness.
I would seriously like more news on J-Lo finishing the Malibu triathlon than a highschool dropout letting crap fall out of her mouth.
ok...I am done.
Well, not yet. lohan says, "Is being gay a sin?", well, as a matter of fact, yes it is.
Now, I am done.

Monday, September 8, 2008

First Day of PreSchool

Well, like so many of N's family and friends, he too started preschool today. N has really shown a need to be in a more structured learning environment despite my best efforts to keep a "fun" learning environment at home. He has partially sprouted wings to total independence. He was so excited this morning and got out of bed an hour before he was supposed to. He carried his backpack with pride and was so happy to be the first one to school this morning. There were no reservations about mommy and daddy leaving him there, he went right on in met with his teacher and began his day at her instruction. I had to press for his attention to get a hug and kiss goodbye. C and I took advantage of N's preschool time and ran lots of errands. When we went to pick up "bubba", Noah looked at me with sad eyes and said, "Are you here to pick me up?" There were more tears shed at leaving school than going! His teacher was impressed with N. She has made N the class cheerleader cause he was so excited and got the others going with his excitement and overall loudness. So, after day 1, preschool is a hit.

First day pic before we left home

N in front of his locker - he shares with 4 others

N in his classroom with one of his teachers Ms. Ivany

Following the leader - end of day activity - that's his other teacher Ms Thea - he walked right by me and did not see me taking the picture - that is how much fun he was having!

N at his locker at the end of the day - we are picking up his craft he made today - it was a hand print with a poem about all the things he did on his first day of preschool.

To top off this day of complete excitement and fun, we let the kids know that we are leaving for Hawaii in the morning!!!! YAY!! Here we come surf, sun, and FUN!!!

Thursday, September 4, 2008

I just have to say.....

God has blessed me with the best kids in the world.
Last entry I mentioned about being able to pass on the love of being outside to my kids. Well, this year we were able to go to Midnight Sun Bible Camp. This is a camp that is owned by our church and is used all summer long for youth to learn more about God and fellowship. One weekend is Family Weekend or FamCamp. It kinda marks the end of the summer season since Labor Day is when most everyone closes up and prepares for winter. It was a great weekend. We camped in a cabin with several bunks built in, no electricity, water, etc. Pure Bliss! I know you are thinking I am crazy, but this was heaven. We hung out with our friends, cooked for one another, had fun together, and let me tell you, my boys were made by God to be outside.
We canoed, walked, picked blueberries, relaxed, sang, worshiped, and we just enjoyed every minute we had out there.
One big shout out goes to the Hewlett Family. They let us borrow their 4x4 jeep. We would not have made it down the dirt road in our minivan to the camp, so THANK YOU!!!!
Ok - back to the boys. I needed to walk to the jeep and it was going down just a little bit on a steep grade, so I asked Noah to stay at the top of the hill, I would run down and back and we would walk on together. So, I am coming back up and he is lying down with his arms outstretched, eyes closed, completely relaxed, and I say, "Noah what are you doing?" He says, "I was born to be in the woods." I love it!
Both boys went nonstop while at camp. This is already on the calendar for next year.

Time with Family

My dad was able to come up for a solid week. It is really nice when family visits and they can stay long enough to enjoy this HU-MONGO state. I was able to take my dad camping at one of our fav places, Seward. Camping with my dad is always fun cause he was one who took me camping as a little girl. I have been camping my entire life thanks to my family and I get to pass that on to my boys, which I LOVE. Among the numerous things we got to do here are the highlights: watched salmon run the streams, glaciers cavving, moose in the wild, glass melting (hee hee!), native alaskans dancing, catching lures instead of fish, and my boys love on their "paw paw". For a moment I thought my dad was going to move into our garage!! Anyway, here are some of my fav pics from his visit.
Me and Dad at the Aialik Glacier



Watching the salmon run


yeah, that's not a fish

It's our stick we used to get us loose from hang-ups!!! hee hee

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

Skinny Tuesday

Sorry about last week folks, family was in town, and well you know how that goes.

First and foremost I think I need a "high-five". I got the results back from my physical and I dropped my cholesterol by 60 points! I went from 208 to 147. The drawback is my bad stuff, LDL is now in the average zone, but my good HDL is low. This could be because I stopped lifting weights for 5.5 weeks while training for the marathon and/or a lack in monounsaturated fats. It is probably a combo. I am super happy my hard work is paying off.

So this week is about the importance of having annual physicals. My personal story is this......
I never had annual physicals before. You know, I had done them in school to play sports and it never occurred to me to keep up this routine throughout my life. I maintained what I thought was a healthy weight - I did not own a scale till now - so this weight was based on how my clothes fit. My entire family takes medication for high blood pressure, high cholesterol, etc. and I thought this was going to be me too, it's hereditary right? So I ate what I wanted and exercised enough to make it satisfactory. I gained weight while pregnant and didn't loose it all after Noah. Oh well, that is just part of life. It happens to everyone. I went through my twenties telling myself I would do it when I was 30. Another baby came, more weight came along too. I still went around with my head in the clouds. I'll get the weight on sooner or later. 29yrs of age and I finally decide to have my first annual physical. I find out that I have high cholesterol, and the doc says he doesn't want to start me on medication, yet. The word "yet" was enough for me to say enough. I don't want to take pills. Period. I will give up whatever, and do whatever it takes, to prevent taking medication. Another factor that played into my decision to start having annual physicals was what happened to a loved one. One December day Kevin gets a call and someone we hold dear finds out they have leukemia. The only way they found out was through an annual physical.
There is so much talk about prevention and early discovery that we should take annual exams more seriously. Sure it takes time out of one day to go to the doc when you are not sick. You know what, is it worth not knowing something that could seriously impact your LIFE? For me, I think quality of life is way more important that having to sit in a doctor's office for ONE morning.

So, I urge all of you to start having those annual physicals. Almost all insurances pay for one annual a year. Take advantage of this benefit, after all you are paying for it and you are worth it!!

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:

To the core folks!! Core strength plays a huge part in overall health. I can't stress that enough. So here it is...

Standing Side Bend With Towel - See Demo HERE


TIP OF THE WEEK:

Breakfast is very important. We have heard that our entire lives. Well, do you really know why? Try starting out your morning with a breakfast low on the glycemic index. It will help keep you full and will help you lose weight by stabilizing insulin. I'll go more in depth on this next week. Give it a try this week and see if you feel better! GOOD LUCK!

Ragin' - Dont use Proflowers.com

Do not, DO NOT order from Proflowers.com

If you do, you run the risk of EzSaver, Ez Savings. Easy saver, etc attaching to your bank account and charging you for 14.95/month! Hugmongo S-C-A-M!!

Once again I am a first hand example of this SO DONT USE PROFLOWERS!!!!!

These thieves have taken about $77!!!!! ARGH!!!!!!

Monday, September 1, 2008

Lack of Sleep

The past week and a half has went by so fast and with little sleep. The crazy part is that Labor Day weekend marks the END of the summer season for Alaska. Most stores and shops, that open for the summer, close. Folks start winterizing their cars and campers. Even the trees think it is fall here and have begun changing colors. Our camping is over until Memorial Day, boo hoo. On the other hand, I am looking forward to slowing down enjoying our saturday mornings on the couch watching game day. I am so ready for college and NFL football and am so glad it is here.

For the past week or so, my dad came up for a visit. It was superfun. We camped, went on a cruise of Alaska'a coast, hiked a little and watched the salmon running, fished, panned for gold, and went to the fair. I took a million zillion pics so these may come over the next few days.
My dad left sat morn and we then hit the road for family camp at bible camp. It was so much fun. the camp is set seven miles back on a dirt road. We had to borrow someone's 4x4 so we could go, the ol' minivan wasn't going make it. We would have been stuck in the first half mile.

The kids are getting so big and have thoroughly enjoyed the summer. Noah starts preschool next week. I think Caleb and I are going to miss him while he is there. I have some great videos of the kids to post. I can't believe they are growing up so fast!!
Here is just a sampling of the pics.....



Tuesday, August 19, 2008

Skinny Tuesday


Can I get a WWWOOOOHHHOOOO!!!
I ran 13.1 miles in 2 hours 29 minutes 51.8 seconds
I finished 293 of 440 women

Us after the race. L to R: Dwight, Me, Mike, and Lori


Lori never ceases to amaze me she finished 168th with a time of 2 hours and 7 minutes
Rock on Sista!!
This was probably one of the hardest mental challenges I have ever faced. After mile 10 I hit a wall, the mind starting convincing me of my weaknesses and the muscles started to follow suit. My legs were so tight I could barely pick them up off of the ground. However when the 57yr old passed me on the final hill, somehow I managed to get those knees lifted!! The grandma beat me to the finish, but I thank her for the motivation she gave me to not walk!
Monday I really felt the result of those tight muscles - sore quads and glutes, with several inflammed tendons. Despite all of this, I COMPLETED A HALF MARATHON!!!!
The best part of the race was the reaction of Noah. See, we have been really wrapped up in the Olympics. Noah knows all about Michael Phelps and his gold medals. Well, at the end of the run we were given gold medals - see the group pic. Noah's eyes were as big as those Olympic golds when he saw that around my neck. "Moooommmmm! You got a golden medal! Oh my gosh Mom you are so awesome, you have a golden medal just like the Olympics! Mom, you are my best friend. I am so proud of your golden medal." Ok - I would have cried but I had no more to give - I had sweated out everything I had in those thirteen miles. That was one of the best days I have had as a mom. My boy thought I was an Olympian.
So Skinny Tuesday this week is all about rewards. I know y'all have been working hard. Reward yourself. Have some frozen yogurt. Take a day off from the gym. When you meet your goals you should give praise to God and give yourself a little love!!
Thank you God for giving me a strong body and getting me across that line!!!!!

Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Skinny Tuesday

Ok short and sweet this week folks.

Just to sum up my last week.........

Only one training run happened, the one on tuesday Aug. 5. Then that was it. I got some kind of something that killed me for a WEEK. At first I was blaming Eve, but then I went to the thought of kidney infection, kidney failure, to meningitis. Needless to say I still feel like crap today, but with the race looming only 5 days away I forced myself to the gym and forced out a 35min run. I thought I would DIE! Sweat pouring off my face, heavy breathing, and just a poor poor run. I then realized how dehydrated I was. This is going to be a struggle on Sun.

On the upside the compression band around my knee helped. I just need rest, fluids, and good food. 3 things that have not happened the last week.

I have plans to run 2 more times this week. I am going to push a 45min run on Thursday, a 15min run on Friday and the meet the beast on Sun.

I have not had time to research tips or exercises, cause all I have wanted to do was curl up and die for the past 7 days. Next week, hopefully, we will pick it back up and I will have news that I am not on the front page of the paper for dying during the marathon, but news that I made my goal - finish without walking and hopefully make it in 2.5hrs. Wish me luck and please PRAY for me. I am gonna need it.

Also, on another front. Keeping your heart healthy is so important. My mom is having surgery this Thursday and is having a pacemaker/defibrillator combo implanted. Please PRAY for her as well. Women are hugely impacted by heart disease and this should be on our minds at all times. Strong HEARTS!!!!

See you on the other side of the finish line!!

Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Skinny Tuesday

A little reflection......
If you noticed last week's list of training runs, you noticed I ran three days in a row. This was stupid on my part. I knew better, but my desire to run with friends took precedence over my need to stay healthy. That third day of running resulted in shin splints. I had to ice my shins two-three times/day Tues, Wed, Thur, and Fri. They were sore when I started my monster run on Sat but the soreness went away and they seemed to have recovered well. My knee is the newest concern right now and I am wondering if it is directly related to me improperly resting my legs.
I am putting heat on my knee and taking ibuprofen for inflammation. This is not my idea of running for fun. Lesson learned.

Let my mistake be your reward. Don't work your muscles several consecutive days in a row. It can result in injury. A healthy runner is better than any injured runner, 100% of the time.
Be smart while training, use self-discipline.

I am anxious to run tomorrow to see how the knee is going to work.

Ok - now that the poopy smoopy part is over. Let's give some *claps* to those runners in the heat wave of summer!!! I am cruising along with superb weather: highs of low 60's and overcast skies with no humidity. My fellow runners are in heat indexes close to triple digits and humidity that can smother a mosquito. I think my running skills would seriously falter in those conditions. So you all get *high-fives* and know that YOU ROCK!

I think most of you who read this have children, even if you don't, these websites are loaded with info and fun to read.
*Moms that Run* - CLICK HERE and *Marathon Mommies* - CLICK HERE

Moms that Run just had a piece on gels. My piece was small so, check it out. Good stuff.

I never thought in my life that I would ever be a runner. Accomplishing 10 miles in one day just has me amazed. Our bodies are so much stronger than our minds allow us to think. Sure, about mile 7 I was thinking I wasn't going to make it, but I did not allow my brain to talk me out of it. I just kept telling my muscles to keep going, knowing that if I stopped, restarting was going to be much tougher than just keeping myself going. I don't think those prayers for help went unanswered, they carried me on through!!!

I must take a minute and give God all the praise for my achievements as of late. On those longer runs all I am doing is asking God to help me push through the pain and not to quit on myself. He is the only one providing me with the strength and motivation to see this through. Without His help I wouldn't have done this:

- Lost 16lbs
- Able to run for almost 2 constant hours
- Learn to eat better
- be in tune with what my body wants and does not
- seek Him when I want to quit
- praise Him for what He has given me - the strength to do this!!
- the desire to pass on this to others whether you want to read it or not!

The LORD is my strength and my shield; my heart trusts in him, and I am helped. My heart leaps for joy and I will give thanks to him - Psalm 28:7

My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. - Psalm 73:26

He gives strength to the weary and increases the power of the weak. - Isaiah 40:29

Training Runs this week

Thursday - 45min pushing the stroller - thought I would die!!
Sat - 115min
Tues - 60min
Wed - 45 min
Fri - 40 min
Sat 60 min

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:

Because of the my injury I am going to stress the importance of stretching. Stretching feels good and helps muscles to be not so sore after a good workout. I do a great 15min stretching routine after every regular workout and most of my runs (I know, I need it every time!!)

See some great stretches and their demos HERE

TIP OF THE WEEK:

If you don't know ASK!! This is so important, even for me. How did I learn about all this stuff?? Reading, asking, watching. If you aren't sure what to eat, ASK. Don't know what to ask? Define some goals. When talking with friends and family they always say "meal plans don't work for me" That is fine. Find some where you can plug in what you eat on a day-to-day basis and look at how many grams of fat, carbs, protein, cholesterol, sodium, you are eating. Every label on food gives you a standard qty to consume based on a 2k cal diet. This is a start. Start somewhere. Next week, but skim instead of 2% milk. The internet is a great resource, and can help you learn some basics. Knowledge builds STRENGTH!!!

Monday, August 4, 2008

A long show


More from the beginning of July

Sunday, August 3, 2008

Ouch

Sat 9am

I ran and ran and ran and ran

10:55am

I am home

10 miles, a sore knee, feeling of accomplishment, screaming quads - calves - glutes, and the confidence needed to face the half marathon in 2 weeks.

I'll take it and do it again - in two weeks.

Fourth of July Seward - Part 1


I said it was coming. More later

~mj

Wednesday, July 30, 2008

Skinny Tuesday - Recovery Part 2

Part 1 is HERE


Now you know what I do before a run, what about during and after?

This is new to me to replenish during my run. I am learning about this cause running for 2.5 hours straight is going to take plenty away from my muscles and I need my endurance to stay up. I am trying out different sports gels. I call them gel shots. These are little packages filled with gel and in the gel is a hefty dose of carbs, salts, and minerals (some have protein) to replenish your muscles and yet fit conveniently in your pocket. Some gels come with caffeine, but I am not trying those cause caff cuts my energy instead of giving me pep. I have used a couple now, and I can tell the difference after my run. My muscles are not screaming quite so loud. I took the gel 30min prior to my run with about 4-6oz of water. The first time there was more gel than it looked like could fit in the pkg, and at the end there was some forceful swallowing. I guess my mind then realized the delightful caramel flavor was not so delightful.

So for the marathon I will plan to do a gel shot 30min prior, and 2 during. One shot after every 45 min.

I am finding that the citrus flavors of the gel, GU brand, are the best for me while running. The citrus flavors, lemon, orange, etc, don't taste like a wad of sugar forced down my throat. And this brand seems to work best for me on my long runs.

What I do post run:

I like to drink a little bit of water just to quench the parchness. It is usually about 4-6oz. For me, a lot of water immediately afterwards kills my tummy. On long runs, I am doing half watered down gatorade and water. Throughout the rest of the day I drink A LOT (at least 64oz) of water. After my 80z of fluid I down 8oz of protein drink. I am liking the Odwalla Super Protein Vanilla Al'Mondo drink. It gives me 10g of protein in 8oz! I can down that really fast and it sits well on my tummy despite that it is made with soy and oatmilk. Added bonus is it is packed with lots of vitamins and minerals that aid in faster recovery. Bad news - it is loaded with sugar - 19g. I can look past that. :) After the marathon I won't have this drink. :(

Stretch, stretch, stretch. This is so important for me. Keep those muscles loose!

Completed Training Runs for the Half:
Mon - 1 hour
Wed - 1.5 hours
Fri - 1 hour
Sun - 35min
Mon - 70 min
Tues - 1 hour

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:

I have stopped strength training for the next two weeks. However, unless you are training for a marathon, DONT STOP!

Back to the core, it's my favorite place. You would think I would have washboard abs by now, but I dont. Just goes to show you how hard you have to work to get a flat tummy.

Modified Plank. See demo HERE

Start out holding the pose for 30sec. Then move up your time as you progress.

TIP OF THE WEEK:

Feel like your diet is going nowhere? The pounds are not coming off? Keep a food journal. Write down everything, EVERYTHING, that goes in your mouth. Then review it after 5 days. A handful of M&M's here, crust of the kid's pb&j's, and an extra roll at dinner will add up! This is a great way to help you WAKE UP and take notice to what you are eating. Take it from me......I am notorious for eating 3-4 goldfish at various times throughout the day. Those goldfish can pack a punch if I don't stop NIBBLING and I must make my food calories and nutrition COUNT!!!! Good luck!

Tuesday, July 29, 2008

Who Fished Like A Champ

I swiped this off of my friend Lori's blog. Who rocked it like a champ catching the silver salmon? Yours truly and my gal pal Lori. How strong are we bringin' it?!

More details and pics coming........I promise.
And Lori is one of my gal pals running the half with moi.

Skinny Tuesday - Recovery Part 1

A topic I mentioned last week but did not delve into was recovery.

Everything I have read says you should take a day off in between long runs/intense workouts for rest and recovery of your muscles and joints. However, when training for a marathon and there being an odd number of days during the week I find that sometimes I have to run 2 days back to back. It is very important to rest your muscles after each workout/run. When you push your muscles you deplete the muscle energy stored. Your muscles recover quicker when you can eat/drink easily digested foods soon after depleting them. I can not eat directly after running 5-8 miles, therefore I need an alternative way to replenish my muscles fast without making my stomach queasy. This is especially important when I do my back to back days. So I am finding that recovery is a combo of three things: what I load into my muscles prior to my run/workout, what I load into my muscles after I run/workout, and a hydration strategy.



Part 1 --

What I load into my muscles before I run/workout:

Of course this is helpful for those who have established a routine of regular intense workouts. Intense workouts can be of varying degrees based on the person. For the sake of confusion, I am going to base this at my level while training, which I think is intermediate intensity. I strength train 3 days a week for 45-50 min and run 4 days a week, anywhere from 40min to (as of now) 1.3hours. A good baseline is that you burn 100cal for every mile ran. So when I take on a nice 8mile run, I am looking at burning at least 800cals, plus vitamins and nutrients.

So, I need to be sure that I am feeding my muscles right. Right now I am eating about 55-60 percent of my calories from carbohydrates. Not 'bad carbs", but complex carbs from fruits, veggies, pasta, bread, rice - I eat A LOT of long grain brown rice. Bad carbs come from the sugars: fructose, glucose, sucrose (table sugar). Another 20% of my diet is protein. I usually eat about 70g of protein/day. Lastly, fats. You need fat. You just got to find the good fat to eat. My diet is about 20%fat. Mostly, my fat is from some dairy, red meat, instant oatmeal, power bars, etc. I roughly eat about 30-50g of fat/day. Because I have high cholesterol - hopefully not much longer-, I keep a watch on my saturated fats, which are in a lot of dairy. My pantry and refrig now carries 98% reduced fat or fat free products. Remember too much fat and your muscles won't use it, instead your body will STORE it - hello...muffin top! I am a creature of habit. Most mornings I eat instant oatmeal, cereal, or a fiber bar. Before a marathon (my only 5.6 miler under my belt) I eat a bowl of weight control banana bread instant oatmeal (loaded with protein and fiber), 4oz of fat free milk(more protein), and guzzle 16 oz of water 1-1.5hours prior. I then for some carbs eat a piece of whole grain wheat toast 45min prior. Also, the night before a run I carbohydrate pack. I will eat a big pasta dish and drink lots of water. The idea is to load up on carbohydrates a few days prior to competition to give energy stores the chance to fill up. "Carbo loading" meals contain 65-70% carbohydrate by calories.

This week, Skinny Tuesday will continue on Wed as well. I have a lot to say this week!

Monday, July 28, 2008

Our First Summer in Alaska



I think this speaks for itself. Click on the pic to make it larger.

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Some recent thoughts........

I am thankful for a God who answers prayers. Kevin lost an engine on takeoff today out of Hawaii and was able to land the plane safely. Praise God that he and his crew are safe.

I ran for 1.5 hours today (yes my quads and calves are screaming!) on the treadmill and only God carried me that last .5 hour. He has given me the endurance and capability to be able to achieve some really awesome goals.

Last night, I saw a streetlight come on for the first time in about 4months. It was neat to see some darkness, but that also means summer is coming to an end and the snow will be here soon.

Why do children wake up at 530am? We are going on 3 consecutive nights. AND they refuse to take naps..............yaaawwwnnnn.

Latest phrase on the lighting store marquee:

"May the best day of your past be the worst day of your future."

Too Sweet

As I have previously mentioned my sweet sweet C is no longer the sweet angel baby, but has transformed himself into a toddler tyrant. He comes complete with full on, in your face, arms and legs flailing, able to crack windows screams, and body contortions of another dimension. He tries not to take no for an answer, but can be so sweet when he asks for things he can't have.

Since birth he has been a swatter. He has always taken things and seen what he could hit at his stubby little arms reach. He has swatted so much that he can become reasonably good with his aim. So, when he hits something now, you can see the intentionality (is that even a word?) in his action.

So, while I am balancing the checkbook he decides to swipe the calculator. It has buttons! He walks around aimlessly with it, for a while. I turn around to try and coax the little bugger into bringing it back to me, and I notice his has his sights set. N is putting together a train track and his head is angled down exposing the top of his head, which to C looks like a target. C's eye take aim, stubby legs quicken their pace, arm raises above his head, and I am on the move as the arm makes it descent to hit its mark. I am too late, and I hear the greatest of screams come from boy #1, Noah. C is there with a look of, "Yes! I did it! Whatcha gonna do about it?" I snatch the calculator from C, while holding N, and begin the verbal discipline. Now, for the sweet part. I tell C he must apologize to N for hurting him, C goes over and says "ahh-ree, O-ah" then gives sweet hugs and tries to kiss N, but N does not like C's kisses on the mouth, so N grabs C's face and plants a sweet one C's cheek.

These boys are so awesome!

Tuesday, July 22, 2008

Skinny Tuesday

Ok, first week down. Just a few things done. Here is what I have discovered so far.......

Good running shoes are a must. I would say that if you are going to seriously take up running, this is a very important topic. I think for the casual runner, a good pair of cross trainers work great and I have had many of those by nike and have always been satisfied and happy. However, for the serious runner this is a topic of serious business. I have researched and researched shoes. Not sure what I needed. Pronation, orthotics, etc. seemed so confusing. Knee pain and shin splints were supposed to be a part of running, so I thought. Insert good shoe store into my life.
So, I find a store that has a whole section dedicated to running. Running savvy folks, who actually know something. Running shoes galore! Even better, they have a treadmill and a camera. Explanation is coming, hold on.
I am greeted by a very knowledgeable salesman who asks me questions like, "How much do you run", "Do you have any prior injuries?", "What shoes have you tried before?". He then measured my foot and knew alot about my arch. I try on several pairs (selected by the running specialist) and each one goes for a test spin on the treadmill. After each short jaunt, he then shows me my feet running on the treadmill, which was recorded by the small camera. Some cause my foot to pronate, while ONE pair gave me a flat landing and a bonus for me, more room in the toe area.
What is pronation? Pronation is to twist the foot so that if walking the weight would be borne on the inner edge of the foot. Basically, your foot is landing at an angle. Meaning joint pain and shin splints would much more easily occur. Making running not so fun.
While talking with said savvy salesman, I was telling him about me taping up my feet to run. I would get blisters and chaffing, so taping them in moleskin was my solution. Well, I been brought into the new modern age of running (for me anyway) and was told about SportShield. It is some sort of roll-on liquid slick-er-upper that prevents chaffing and blisters. Well, I tried it out and it works! I was so surprised and so totally happy. You can use it anywhere, like between your thighs (which is so great when you go on long bike rides in shorts), your arms to protect your skin from the ipod armband while running a lengthy stretch, etc. This may become a new sport staple in my home.
Total cost for the shoes: $120 well spent.

Hydration. Another important topic. For me, I need a lot of water when it comes to a good run. This goes as far as watching sodium intake because if I eat salty foods the night before I run, it directly affects how far I can go and how much water I need to drink. On a normal day, I usually down about 16-24oz before I get in the car for the gym. After my run I usually have about 24-32oz more. This helps in recovery as well. I am still working on that topic. I am learning that when it comes to running and training I want to watch my caffeine intake as well. I still have not given up my morning cup of joe, but sodas are becoming a fading memory. Something about it affects me and reduces my energy, which I need all I can muster. I am now understanding the importance of 64oz of water a day. The body can only really use like 16oz of water/hour. So don't go overboard if you are on a run. Drink, drink, drink!!! water, that is. :)
I am going to look into sports drinks, but I will cover this in recovery. Usually, I don't drink the sports drinks before a run, just during and after. Anyway, I will cover that later.

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:

I will rotate to the upper body this week. We all want to see those triceps firm and strong. Who wants "teacher arm"?? NOT ME!! These burn, but are sooooo worth it.

Tricep Dips with Bent Knees. See demo HERE.

TIP OF THE WEEK:

New found favorite of mine is edamame (ed-uh-mah-mae). They are just baby soybeans still in the pod. They are so yummy yummy. Let me give props to my SIL for the mention of these that drew my curiosity, and has caught my taste buds by surprise! Let me go ahead and present the nutrition for these tasty little pods.....
Click HERE
Fiber-rich carbohydrates such as edamame help prevent mood fluctuations by keeping blood-sugar levels steady. Edamame also contains protein, which further helps stabilize blood sugar, and omega-3 fatty acids, which have been shown to combat depression - thank you soybeans!!!
I find them in the frozen veggies section of my local grocery.

Oh, and these are especially good dipped in soy sauce. I hope you give them a try!!

1/2 Marathon Training Runs
Miles for the previous week - 17
Mon - 4.5, 45 min
Wed - 3.5, 30min
Fri - 6, 1.2 hours
Sun - 3, 30min

Monday, July 21, 2008

Alphabet Tag

I really don't know why I keep on doing these things.......but let me indulge you....

A. ATTACHED OR SINGLE? bound by marriage to the old man :)
B. BEST FRIEND? the old man ref. above - KJ
C. CAKE OR PIE? seriously, I am a sweets addict, so do you even have to ask? I'll take both
D. DAY OF CHOICE? the days where the kids sleep till 9am
E. ESSENTIAL ITEMS? chapstick, tieback for my hair, gum, and BE lipgloss
F. FAVORITE COLORS? anything really
G. GUMMY BEARS OR WORMS? uhm, not a candy person, give me cake!
H. HOMETOWN? New Hope, Sweet Home Alabama
I. INDULGENCE? Dark chocolate fondue
J. JANUARY OR JULY? HELLO? I live in Alaska. I'll take July please
K. KIDS? 2 wonderful boys
L. LIFE ISN'T COMPLETE WITHOUT? a 3yr old screaming from the bathroom to come and wipe his butt!
M. MARRIAGE DATE? April 12, 2003
N. NUMBER OF BROTHERS AND SISTERS? 1 brother, AND 2 SIL's I consider to be more than that
O. ORANGES OR APPLES? Both
P. PHOBIAS OR FEARS? uhm, never really thought about this. I guess I just face it, whatever it is.
Q. QUOTE? Never stop _______ . Insert verb as needed.
R. REASON TO SMILE? waking up to see my hubby beside me
S. SUPERMAN OR WONDER WOMAN? Wonder Woman. Oh yes I remember the days of running around in my WW outfit.
T. TAG 5 PEOPLE: I shall not.
U. UNKNOWN FACT ABOUT ME: I will leave it unknown
V. VEGETABLES? all of them
W. WORST HABIT? easily de-motivated
X. X-RAY OR ULTRASOUND? Ultrasound - it's how I saw my babies for the 1st time
Y. YOUR FAVORITE FOOD? oooooh, thats a toughie. I love a lot of food.
Z. ZODIAC SIGN? Aries

Sunday, July 20, 2008

More of Anchorage

The boys, Becki, and I had a couple days left before she leaves so we drive down to Portage to see another glacier. While on the way we see some dall sheep on the side of the mountain which is right beside the road. How cool! I love living in Alaska.

Lucky for all of us this boat ride was only an hour on a smooth as glass lake. The lake was made by the glacier as it went through the valley. The water was gorgeous. A huge piece of the glacier was up by the visitor center and the color was awesome. Becki went and got a new camera so we wouldn't miss all this beauty. This past winter while the lake was frozen, an avalanche came down and hit the lake. It did not break through the ice but caused an underice wave. It broke through at the visitor center bank and it was 30ft high! CRAZY! Because the glacier made the lake it is a dead lake. There is not any vegetation or fish in it.

We also walked around downtown and the flowers are amazing! The crazy amount of sunlight we get causes things to grow really big and have very vibrant colors! The color of the flowers were so bright that the camera could not do it justice.

Saturday, July 19, 2008

More Camping Fun

So, Kevin and I get a real bad wild hair to catch a king salmon. Well, the last weekend to fish for kings was this past weekend. The run is mostly north of here now, and most of the streams are now closed for king fishing because the season has been slow due to the cooler weather.



We make a last second call to load up and go camping/fishing for the weekend. We go to one of the last places open to fish for kings. The campground we wanted to stay in was full - big shocker - so we drive on up the road. Surely we will find a place to stay right?



We chose this little place close to the "fishin hole" where there are other campers as well. Gotta be ok right. It is just for a couple of nights. OH MY AIKEN!! We end up in 4-wheeler H**L!! We were obviously the sore thumbs cause we did not have 4 wheelers to ride around like crazy ppl, since the rest of them were DRUNK driving these 4 wheelers! I could go on and on about the worst place in Alaska to camp. I will spare you any further bad details that may spew from my fingers.



For most of the day on Sat. we were away from the 4-wheeler madness and sat down on the river bank fishin for the last of the king run. Supposedly in the land of the salmon run you are allegedly able to just drop your line in the water and before your lure hits the water fish are jumping up and hooking themselves. Well, not so much. Apparently these not-normal temps are taking its toll on the salmon running. We saw them jumping in the water. We would cast our lines right in front of them, and to no avail. They decided the nice water was better than our freezer. Grrrrrr. So, no kings this year. I have my sights set on next year.



We are loading up and going back to Seward, LW(lord willing), at the end of this month. The next run of salmon are coming through and we are going to start fishing at the BEGINNING of this run. We need more fish in the freezer!

Thursday, July 17, 2008

Kenai Fjords National Park Cruise

115 Nautical Miles of wildlife and beautiful scenery. This was a 6 hour cruise of pure bliss. Despite Kevin getting yelled at by a crew member for endangering his children, Me ralphing off the back of the boat, actually spending most of my time at the back of the boat, and we broke 2 cameras. I would do it again in a heartbeat!


We were surrounded by about 12 humpback whales at once. Everywhere you looked you saw spray, flukes, and arching backs. It was incredible. At a tidewater glacier we actually had a humpback whale breech the water directly in front of the glacier. It was very cool! We also saw sea otters, puffins, eagles, glaciers, sea lions, seals, bird sanctuaries, and just incredible views of Alaska's coastline. I really can not believe how beautiful this place is.


So the crew warned us that we could not carry Caleb on our hip near the rails. He had to be secured in a backpack or secured on our body somewhere other than the hip. They were freaking out that if we hit a bump in the water, well over the rails C would go. After 3 verbal warnings, Kevin got threatened and was told to put C in our backpack or he would have to see the captain. We kinda giggled cause it was like he was going to be sent to the principal. However, they were just lookin' out for our kid. So, in the backpack he went.



So Becki and I broke our point and shoot cameras. yay. Thank goodness it wasn't my 20D. I would be in the corner balled up and sobbing, still. Now the hunt is on for a new point and shoot. Any recommendations?



Pics are coming later. We have like a buh-zillion to go through.

Tuesday, July 15, 2008

Skinny Tuesday

Ok, ok, ok. We are going to take a break from the paradoxes, myths, etc. I have some news. I am not real sure how I feel about this news. But here it goes. I am gonna go ahead and insert foot in mouth cause I have agreed to do a half-marathon! WHAT! hold the phone, cause sista has gone mad.

I know I said that a halfer would never happen. So I will go ahead and say that a full is definitely NOT happening. A full sounds like torture. After my last run in June, at the finish, I felt as though the half was doable. Well, some of girlfriends are doing a half in Aug and asked if I wanted to run too. Well, the inner runner/workout freak started jumping for joy while my legs were screaming at me "WHAT ARE YOU THINKING???!!!" So, you know the answer, I said yes.

So, if my math is correct, it took me 1hour to run 5.6 miles, which means to run 13.1, it will take me about 2hr and 20 min. WHAT?!
Oh yeah, I start training tomorrow. Training for a halfer in 4 weeks, while most take 12 weeks! How strong. This is going to happen after coming off of two camping trips, a family visit,
GI-normous eating hiatus, that has left me, well how should I say this, a big fat blob of pudge.

Well, now I need to learn about hydration, recovery, gel shots, etc. So, guess what Skinny Tuesday will be about for the next four weeks? That's right, running and training.
AND, since one of my bloggy friends has started running for the first time in her life (Go Court!) I hope she benefits from this info as well as the rest of you. Even if you are not going to run marathons, hopefully the info will help you learn how to take care of those muscles after sufficiently working them out and feeding those muscles right so they keep on going STRONG!

EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:

Even though I am training for a halfer I will not give up the strength training just yet. I am going back to the core this week because it is so important in overall health. Getting the weight off of the middle is important not just for our figure but for high blood pressure and high cholesterol and heart disease. (drumroll)...........

Reverse Crunches with Ball. See demo HERE.

If you do not have a ball, use one of your kids, you know, the $2.50 ones that they sell in the main aisle at wal-mart. Every kid has one. If not, go to walmart and get the biggest one. It will work in a pinch. Eventually, invest in an exercise ball. It is great. Trust me, good investment.

TIP OF THE WEEK:

Can I just say the importance of eating right??!! I get off of my meal plan and boy can I feel it in my workouts. Having a balanced diet really does help with stamina, energy and endurance. So, if you are not sure how to start go to http://www.sparkpeople.com/. They can get you started. Already on a meal plan? Check out how you are doing. Plug in your diet and it will tell you the important percentages of carbs, fats, proteins, etc.

C'mon people, it's not about being skinny. Let's get healthy!!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Random catch up

I find out later this week if Noah is getting into the preschool we want. He has been on the waiting list and they are releasing the class lists this week. Please pray he makes it in.

All of this outdoor biking and running has rubbed off on Noah. This weekend while camping he set up his bicycle where his training wheels were set up on rocks, making his back wheel lift off the ground a little. He then blocks in the front wheel and goes to town on his stationary bike. He would then do 10 laps around the pop-up and then ride some more. He told us he is training for his triathlon.

Kevin leaves for a trip on Friday. Please pray he is safe and makes it home safely.

I am sorry if I have not called some of you. You are on my to-do list this week. We have been putting camping before everything else, sorry.

Caleb has completely lost his angelic personality and is now in the throws of toddler terror! I have no idea how to handle him, cause Noah NEVER did it like this. **Disclaimer** his sweet smiles in the photos I post are in between raging tantrums. He is the the true definition of roller coaster.** He had his 18-month well baby and is right on cue. 23lbs and 29.5 inches. Right on.

I plan on posting pics but I am a little sad at being a camera down. And I have a million zillion to go through.

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Seward Alaska

WHOA MOMMA! Seward is AWESOME!! I am loving me some Alaska in the summertime (despite the unseasonable cool temps)! We drove down on July 3rd and stayed until the 6th. Kevin's Mom came in for the fun. She was a trooper considering we drug her into the wilderness for 4 days AND this was her FIRST time camping!! We enjoyed the local scene by watching the fisherman bring in their catch for the day. We saw a 174lb halibut. WOW-SA! I was wishing that was going in my freezer! We saw the running of Mt Marathon. A 3.2 mile race that reaches over 3000ft in elevation in those 3.2 miles. The folks running come down the mountain tumbling! The cross the finish line beat up, bloody, muddy and broken. The amazing thing was the youth that ran it. Some of the kids looked 7,8,9 yrs old. They were crossing the line with muddy faces and dragging feet. KUDOS to those very brave kids. They ROCK! We ate our first Reindeer dog. YUMMY! We had dinner at a local joint whose motto was "Stop Here for Cheap Beer and Lousy Food". Can I say that it doesn't get much better than that. We made a short hike to the Exit Glacier. Noah walked the entire almost 3 miles. He mentioned on the way back that he missed his hiking buddy, Cole. We miss you Stice's! The glacier was "cool", pun intended. Har har. The scenery here is unmatched. We took a thousand pics. We also broke 2 cameras on this trip!!! Urgh! We had a moose walk through our camp, how cool?! One of the great things I love about camping in AK is that you can bike into most towns from your campsite. So you avoid the horrendous traffic and get to things easily. Added bonus is you can work off some of those smownies, smores, and our new creation, campfire fondue. Campfire fondue is what happens when you have two choc-o-holics (me and Krista) who have too much chocolate and time on their hands late at night around a campfire! yuuuuuummmmmm. While in Seward we did more than just eat. We visited the SeaLife Center. It's like a big aquarium that also rescues AK's injured wildlife. The kids loved the puffins and the salmon. Caleb was daring and actively participated in the discovery zone where you could touch all kinds of starfish, anemone, and crabs. Noah wouldn't touch the water! HA! The entire walk through the place was filled with resounding echos of "Hey guys over here!" by Noah and Caleb's "ish! ish! ish!!" We also took a sightseeing cruise. That deserves a post of its own. It was a busy weekend but it was a blast.

Tuesday, July 8, 2008

Skinny Tuesday

Last week was paradoxes and this week I am going to talk about one HUGE myth.

MYTH: Lifting weights makes you bulk up not toned.

Lifting weights IS the way to tone your muscles. Since muscle takes up less room than fat, women tend to lose inches when they strength train. So in addition to the physical benefits (increased metabolism, decreased risk of osteoporosis, increased strength), strength training will help you slim down too! Women, in fact, are more likely to tone up from strength training rather than bulk up. Research shows that women can add up to 30% lean muscle and end up looking thinner, feeling stronger and being firmer. No matter how many repetitions you do, you should be lifting a challenging weight and feel muscle fatigue by the end of each set. Change your thinking - Lift weights to be THINNER!!

EXCERCISE OF THE WEEK:

Forward lunges with dumbbells. See demo HERE. I always have to remind myself that I can hold more weight while doing these lunges. Your legs are usually stronger than you think. However, if you are concerned about using a heavier weight, start small. Just remember your want your muscle to become fatigued for a good workout.

TIP OF THE WEEK:

Remember to reward yourself. Give yourself one day a week where calories and working out don't matter. Instead of rocking it in the gym, take a bike ride and enjoy the scenery and fresh air. Set a goal - like doing 5 extra minutes of cardio - then reward yourself with a long aromatherapy bath. Find a way to make yourself worth it!!

Tuesday, July 1, 2008

Zoo, Arctic Thunder, Bird to Gird



The Alaska Zoo. Kevin had an off day and we opted to visit the local zoo. It is small but packs in all of AK's cool animals. Noah named several animals after family and friends. Aunt Katie is the snow owl, Tracy and Cole are the 2 black bears, and I am the snow leopard since she was having babies just like I had Noah and Caleb. Noah's fav was the polar bears, it was Caleb's too.




Arctic Thunder. Airshow here on the base. We saw the C-17 maneuver and the awesome F-22. The Thunderbirds also did a show, that was really cool. The night before the show Wynona did a free concert and her mom sang too. So it was like seeing The Judds, which I grew up listening to. We waited FOREVER for a must-have funnel cake and got a cool pic of us in the cockpit of the C-17. Fun times.




Bird to Gird. This is a 14mile out and back, bike ride that is the most beautiful ride I have ever been on. I put the kids in the bike trailer and headed out with some girlfriends. The gears on my bike were giving me some trouble, but this cool guy at a bike shop in Girdwood patched them up enough to get me home. I ran off the trail several times cause I was looking at the scenery. AWESOME!! Despite this cold I have, I made it up and over the 3 mile gradual climb that almost killed me!! It was all worth it.




We are off to Seward this weekend for a camping trip for the 4th. I can't wait. I just hope I am not stuffed up and feeling like poo from this cold. It always seems to hit when we are going camping.


Hope you all have a great 4th!


Skinny Tuesday

***I need a proverbial swift kick in the butt. I ran around the neighborhood last week, one day, uhm yeah, that's it. For the week. One run around the neighborhood. AND did I mention the amount of calories I allowed myself to eat. I had a cheat week, not day, cheat week. sigh. I will not stop brushing my teeth, I will not stop brushing my teeth.......***


This week I am talking about paradoxes for health and fitness. A paradox is defined as: a statement that contradicts itself.

Here are a couple that I read about on SP and when talking with friends these are usually brought up.


PARADOX: You can get more results with less effort.



Opposite of everything you’ve ever been told, how is this possible? Simply put, as you build yourself a strong foundation, you don't have to stretch as far to get what you want. Pretend you're collecting walnuts from a tree by throwing rocks into the branches. At first, you'd have some success, but the effort outweighs the results.

Now, suppose you started to build a ladder by grinding the used walnuts into a woody pulp, a ladder that grew as you collected more walnuts — a cycle of growth begins. The higher the ladder grows, the closer you get to the walnuts. The closer you get, the easier it is to hit and collect more walnuts for your ladder, your foundation. Eventually, you'll reach the branches. Then, just by shaking the branches, you can collect hundreds of walnuts in just a few seconds. Ta-da! Results outweigh the effort. You'll also be in a perfect spot to go after a higher tree.


PARADOX: Perfectionism does not lead to perfection.


Excellence is a good thing.

So is working as hard as possible to create, build, and perform to the best of your abilities. But what you may not realize is that trying to be perfect can actually hinder your chances of being excellent. The pursuit of perfection comes with an ugly flip side: a fear of failure, or fear of making a mistake.

This fear keeps a lot of people from trying something different or learning a new skill. They'd rather not try than go through the anguish of not doing it perfectly. The perfectionist likes to stick with things she knows that she can do. To succeed, you need to grow, learn, and expand your world. By erasing your opportunities for testing the water, perfectionism limits your growth, and takes away your chances of finding a more excellent path. That's why your physical foundation is so critical. It gives you the confidence and support you need to take those chances, to recover from mistakes, and test the limits of possibility.


New addition to Skinny Tuesday will be a suggested exercise of the week. I will be doing this exercise along with my regular workout. Just give it a try and have fun with it.


EXERCISE OF THE WEEK:


Lower Back Extensions - You can find a demo HERE


Our core is very important. Having a strong core helps the rest of the body move and balance more efficiently. For all us with little babies, having a strong lower back helps when lifting those baby carriers and wee ones after a scrape on the knee. Our lower backs undergo a lot of stress when lifting because most of use do not lift with the legs. Added bonus, having a strong lower back helps with those crunches to tone the tummy. Never underestimate the importance of a strong back!!


TIP OF THE WEEK:


When possible, to help portion control, cook your meal in the size portion you want. For example, when making meatloaf use a pan with several small loaf slots, or when making a pie, use ramekins instead of a pie plate. Do not be afraid to use measuring cups and ration out your meals ahead of time - that is why we have tupperware! It is surprising how much 2/3c rice really looks on your plate.

I do not use the "rule of fist" when it comes to portion size. I can make my fist several different sizes. So, I feel as though this leaves me room to eat more of something bad - a built in failure. If you like this rule I would recommend having a portion 1/2 the size of your tightened fist. Always better to start small, in my opinion.

Sunday, June 29, 2008

Fearless Freedom


He has succeeded! Noah has conquered the bicycle! He decided to show me this one afternoon out of the blue how he could fly down the sidewalk. He was so proud of himself and it was just beaming in his little face. He has been working on pedaling. This has been his major obstacle. It was a little tricky for him to push the pedals all the way around. He would press down and skid because he was hitting the brake instead of pushing forward to complete the revolution.
He still presses down occasionally and the brakes will get him, but he is now going on his own.

WOOOOOOHOOOOO!

This is wonderful news for me cause this means I will now only haul around 25lbs in the bike trailer instead of 60! My legs are going to be so happy!
As we are out scooting around the neighborhood, Noah asked I make a video. Enjoy the show!

video

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Pics from Marathon

Ok, so go ahead and say it. I am so hot when I am running!! HA ha ha!!! That's me, there in the back with the gray tank and black arm band. Um, yeah.





Oh did you say you want an up close pic?








As my husband and his best friend would say, "How tight!"
I look like I am dying or walking. I swear I was running!

And here is the proof. If you want a good laugh at my back side you can watch me run to the finish. Let's all thank Kevin for the flattering view!

video

At least the kids look good with the moose. Don't ask me, I don't know why he was there! The kids wanted the pic! Well, Noah wanted the pic. Caleb did not like the big stuffed antlered moose.