Mad Anthony Mud Run | 4.5 snowy miles

28 02 2015

My coworkers invited me to join their team on a local 4.5-mile mud run, so I signed up back in early December. Over the past few weeks, we accumulated approximately 18″ of snow, so the mud run logo was appropriately changed from:

runthevalley1

to

RuntheValley

We shuttled from a shopping center to the park… the bus took us off-roading into the snow!

IMG_1722 IMG_1723

We tried to warm up by the fire before trekking to the starting line, but our toes were already frozen. HURT.

IMG_1727

The race started out COLD, but luckily the sun came out in full-force just as Corral 2 was called to approach the starting line. Our official race results said it was 9 degrees at the start, and there were 391 finishers.

IMG_1720

IMG_1728

We started by running uphill through the snow. It felt like trying to run in a swimming pool. Or really deep sand. The course was interspersed with a number of obstacles, most of which were really fun! I didn’t take any pictures, although I wore my phone in my SPIBelt (in a LifeProof case, in a Ziploc bag.)

Battle 1: Tire pit
Battle 2: Tunnel Underground
Battle 3: Hay bale climb

Battle 4: Wall Climb
Battle 5: Under /over logs
Battle 6: Swamp run, river crossings & tunnel
Battle 7: Net Crawl
Battle 8: Mystery Obstacle
Battle 9: Tube crawl

There were also a bunch of slushy/icy wooden balance beams over the river, but the scariest obstacles were the concrete tunnel “aqueducts” that run at an angle under both directions of the interstate and the grassy median, both full of knee-deep rushing water. You trudge through one, run around the park, and return via the other. They are LONG:
IMG_1757
The race official on the bus assured us that we could bypass these obstacles due to the cold temps today, but there was no way to bypass them. We had to step off a snowy bank, down into the tunnels. From the website: “Hopefully you survive the fence and river crossings in one piece before making your way to safety through our darkened tunnel.  Prepare to meet your match!  Prepare to get wet!
First of all, the tunnels were mostly pitch-black. I couldn’t see the people around me, so I held onto the wall with my right hand and sloshed through. We were knee-deep in water and I was very careful not to splash any higher than that for fear of my wet clothes freezing later. When we emerged, soaked, the cold water actually acted as an insulator, and my feet warmed up! On the return trip, we entered a different tunnel, and there was a small concrete ledge running the length of the tunnel, so I walked on that, walking my hands along the roof like monkey bars. (It was still pitch black. I was terrified of slipping and falling in!)
Most of the race route consisted of watching my footing as I ran through the snow. Where it had been trampled by hundreds of runners, there were icy stretches, and I fell twice into the deep snow. Every so often, we’d bottleneck into a fun obstacle, mostly testing our upper body strength. For all the crawling obstacles, being short actually helped me because I didn’t have to army crawl or put weight on my knees for any of them.
I did have one really scary mishap.
While trying to bypass getting my feet refrozen in one very wet, swampy area, I was sucked down into the springs like quicksand, engulfed in freezing water up to my chest! Luckily I was able to think fast to pull myself out, only then noticing the warning cones that had fallen over, floating around that area. I was soaked to the bone, through all 4 shirts, 2 pairs of pants, my leg compression sleeves, and 2 pairs of socks. My fleece pullover was quickly frozen stiff. For the rest of the race, I had no choice but to run to stay warm, for fear that my pants would freeze if I slowed down.
Runners who were around me when I sunk gave me hugs later, assuring me that, “we would have pulled you out!” There is nothing like the camaraderie of the running community. They were really scared for me!
Right after that, I thumped a deer crossing sign and then saw a deer scampering through the brush in the snow. Reminds me of that radio show call-in segment. You know the one?
One obstacle required carrying a cinderblock up the hill and back down. I opted to answer a trivia question and received an exemption! So that’s where my running buddy and I parted ways; she wanted to do the carry to practice for Spartan. I decided to save my back, since I had my spine fused when I was 17.
There were several fun parts of the course, like sliding down muddy-snow hills or grand jete-ing over the river onto slush.

Somehow I missed the memo that the race was 4.5 miles (I thought it was 4), so once I passed the 4-mile marker I started to question just how many miles I had signed up for! 5? 6? 10? 12? I finished and accepted the mylar emergency blanket that every finisher received, along with my medal. I had so much mud on my shirt and sleeve from where I had to pull myself up out of the springs. Being able to do 10 pullups in high school certainly came in handy! Although one sufficed in this case.

IMG_1758

IMG_1732 IMG_1733

I changed every piece of clothing behind the porta-potties – I wasn’t waiting in line for the restroom:

IMG_1724

In another near-scare after the race, I choked on my bagel quarter and almost needed the Heimlich. I remember trying to rasp something to my husband while it was lodged in my throat. We finally warmed up by the fire in dry clothes – so happy!

IMG_1734

We caught the very last shuttle back to our car and walked around Target in our race getup. Of COURSE I ran into a coworker… oops!

I’m SO sore now – hopefully this kid will give me back my foam roller soon!

IMG_1752

***

Other blog reviews of past years:

Obstacle Racing Media





Five on Friday | Messy Hair, Don’t Care

27 02 2015

Linking up for Five on Friday with DarciChristinaApril, and Natasha, and oh hey, Friday with Karli and Amy.

one | Picture day is coming up, which meant E was due for a haircut. The first place I took him was closed, and at the second place, our favorite stylists had both moved. Oh man. E was a trooper on the 3rd attempt. Gave her the stinkeye the entire time, even during his (FIRST EVER) salon shampoo. The first go-round, she barely cut anything and left his hair a curly, shaggy mess. I made her start over. And then had her recut the sides. And front. And back. And then I just gave up.

IMG_1644 IMG_1648 IMG_1650

two | I finally made Sage another pair of baby leggings! It’d be fun to squeeze in more projects like this, but I spend all my free time with my boys these days… (SEE #4-5).

IMG_1564

three | This little guy turns 5 months today! Can I just keep him in my pocket, always?

IMG_1541

four | On a recent snow day, I took my toddler on a Mommy-and-Me date. We enjoyed Toddler Time at a local bounce house, where admission was half-price and parents got in free and were allowed on all the equipment with their little ones. E enjoyed the giant koi pond, toddler area, inflatables, mural, slides, and climbing areas.  Afterward, I took him out to lunch and had the best time just sitting across from him in a booth, talking to him. When did he turn into such a big kid? Later, we perused Trader Joe’s, and he insisted on pushing the cart as he pleased and even helped the cashier unload and scan everything.

IMG_1633

five | We got about 18 inches of snow at my house this week, so we met up with the neighbors for some sledding and snow tubing, even building a sweet jump!

IMG_2061 IMG_2085 IMG_2096

As always, so happy it’s Friday!





Oh hey, Friday

20 02 2015

Linking up at the last minute with Five on Friday with DarciChristinaApril, and Natasha, and oh hey, Friday with Karli and Amy.

one | Valentines Day! We enjoyed a Parents’ Night Out on Friday as a fundraiser for a mission trip at church, so my husband and I went to our favorite restaurant downtown while the kids did all kinds of fun activities. Later that weekend, we exchanged small gifts – I gave him chocolates and a bag of TJ’s chia seeds, and he gave me Russell Stover chocolates and a gold Nate Berkus Swingline that I’ve been stalking. LOVEBIRDS I tell you.

IMG_1508

We traveled to New Kent, VA to run a frosty 10k “Race for the Chocolate” on Saturday, then visited with a lot of my family. Race recap here!

IMG_1433

two | On Monday, I took my infant to his routine 4-month checkup before the snow began falling. His health and stats looked good (once again, 98% for his head – you’re slipping, kid – brother has always been 100%…). The pediatrician had one concern and is referring us to a specialist before he’ll need surgery around his birthday. Trying to be brave about this.

IMG_1442

three | I planned all sorts of indoor activities for our snow days this week, some wins and some fails:

IMG_1459

Painting – WIN.

IMG_1467

Indoor snow tray with sand toys – WIN. And I didn’t have to take the baby outside!

IMG_1476

Paint in a bag – FAIL. He was excited until I started pouring his beloved paint into a bag and sealing it. MELTDOWN.

IMG_1479

Watercolor coffee filter snowflakes – BIG WIN. Plus, I enjoyed this, too!

four | We played out in the 4.5″ of snow, too. E had no interest in tray sledding, but the baby enjoyed it – he had no choice, since I was wearing him and I wanted to sled!

IMG_1484

IMG_1494

IMG_1495

IMG_1497

IMG_1499

five | In addition to my newfound love of finding cute hand-me-downs on Instagram, The Baby Gap outlet in my hometown is one of my favorite places for kids’ clothes. The clothes are cute, soft/stretchy, and fit my kids really well. I can find good deals (as low as $1.50 on some pieces). I spent my last snow day organizing closets and tagging all their baby clothes to consign for a sale in March to make room for the next sizes up!

IMG_1445

Happy Friday! :)





Race for the Chocolate 10k| Recap

16 02 2015

After a late night out on Friday out at one of our favorite date spots, it was time to pack up and get 4 hours of sleep before traveling to New Kent for the “Race for the Chocolate 10k.” We almost didn’t go, but I got a good deal on my registration through a Black Friday sale and was promised lots of swag at the finish line: a long-sleeved tech shirt, an etched wine glass, wine, chocolate, race medal, and even a rose!

IMG_1416

 | via |

We were racing the clock to make it to packet pickup, and about 30 minutes before we arrived, my son threw up in the car. And of course, it was bitter cold out. Sub-freezing temps and high winds.We would have turned around and driven the 2 hours back home then, but we were so close and had made lots of weekend plans to see family.

My husband dropped me off near packet pickup in time, but I forgot my ID in the car. Luckily he was able to text me a photo of it from the car, and the race people accepted that for my wristband. They ran out of t-shirts in my size, even though I preordered it in November.

IMG_1427

By that point, I desperately needed to nurse the baby, so I ducked behind the winery on a porch stairwell, the only place not populated with tons of runners.

The alternative:

IMG_1430

 

IMG_1429

As I was nursing Sage outside, someone invited us onto the enclosed porch that had standing heaters and sofas everywhere. While hundreds of runners were crammed in the open-air front porch, we thawed alone on the enclosed/heated back porch! We stayed there until the race began.

IMG_1386-0

IMG_1381

IMG_1385

The 5k runners had a delayed start because of a medical emergency before the race, but our 10k began only 5 mins late.IMG_1431

I started to get a little worried that I hadn’t really trained for this 10k (6.2 miles), just having run 2-3 mile stretches here and there since the baby was born, with only one 5-miler in December.

Nevertheless, the first mile was a breeze. It felt good to warm up and run after riding in the car all morning. It was crowded at the beginning and the dirt path had lots of grooves I had to be careful about.

IMG_1432

Then it switched to pavement as we wound through the winery property, roundabouts, and ritzy neighborhood. After the first mile, I actually felt pretty hot and regretted the extra fleece I was wearing and the handwarmers I had tucked into my gloves.

The first water stop had one man hurriedly filling water cups, but he was so behind and had no help!

I hit a slump around Mile 3-4 but picked up again at 4, knowing we were almost finished. I passed the second (and final) water stop, but they were out of water. I was upset about this because I am a nursing mommy who needs to stay hydrated! I didn’t carry water with me because the course promised 2 water stops. I texted my husband at miles 4.22, 5, and 6 to let him know my whereabouts.

IMG_1388

I remembered that a 10k is actually 6.2, and those last .2 miles seemed to take forever as they stretched uphill around the winery building in the bitter wind.

IMG_1387

I texted my husband, who was still on the covered porch with our boys. Someone had offered their Lexus to my husband and the kids to sit in during the race to stay warm, which was super sweet, but he stayed on the porch, and E watched me finish from the window:

IMG_1447

I sprinted through to the finish and felt dizzy for a few moments after crossing. It was all very anti-climactic after that. At least I was smiling as I was handed my medal, still in its Ziploc package from shipment.

IMG_1433

I had to search for water and finally found abandoned pallets of mostly-frozen bottles.

Chocolate 1

I immediately got in a line for what I assumed was the rest of our race swag and overheard pretty quickly that they had run out of roses and chocolates. I stayed in line anyway, just in case. Most of these photos were taken by the race officials:

Chocolate 6

Chocolate 7

It was while waiting in the first line that I met someone who recognized me from my blog! It was definitely the highlight of the race for me – I was so excited to meet someone who’s been following my blog since my Disney guest post on Running at Disney recapping the 2014 marathon. I just wish I had asked you your name… and where you’re from… and how you liked your first Disney Marathon! (Feel free to answer in the comments!) I hope you are all thawed-out from Saturday’s race, just in time for the snow. Brrrrr…  

I picked up my tray with almond Biscotti, 2 chocolates, and some heart-shaped marshmallows. The rumors were true; there were no more roses for finishers.

Chocolate 3

Chocolate 2

Chocolate 4

The wine glasses were printed with the name of the winery, although the race advertisement featured the 2013 race glasses etched with the name of the race. Once I passed through the line, my husband joined me in the second line with the boys for wine-tasting. My infant was in the Ergo, nice and warm, but my toddler was miserably cold. I handed him the marshmallows.

IMG_1391

IMG_1392The wine-tasting was sooo brief, but it was in that tent that we found the bananas. They were so cold that biting into mine made E cry and throw it to the ground.

Chocolate 5

We wanted to get the wood-fired pizza and crepes from the food trucks, but it was too cold to be outside any longer, so we trekked all the way back to the car, E sobbing loudly the whole way.

IMG_1436


IMG_1399

There wasn’t much out there, but we followed our GPS to a local BBQ place. We were excited until we realized that it led us to someone’s private residence – they owned a BBQ catering company. So we found a Subway and then headed off to see family. My parents made us BBQ and fries for dinner, coincidentally!

IMG_1403

I will not be running this race again. Not until they figure out how to order the right number of shirts that people signed up for months in advance. And roses. And water. And chocolate.





Five on Friday the 13th | Lucky in Love

13 02 2015

Friday the 13th doesn’t scare me. My mom was born on Friday the 13th, she was due with me on Friday the 13th (but I came on Friday the 6th), and then I was due Friday the 6th with my own son. Did you follow all that? It’s okay, I’ll wait.

All that to say… I’m looking forward to all that this weekend has in store, between a REAL DATE with my husband, a mini trip, and running a wine and chocolate 10k. But first… linking up with Five on Friday with DarciChristinaApril, and Natasha, and oh hey, Friday with Karli and Amy.

one | Valentine Blogger Exchange

Did you get a chance to read my recap of the Valentine blogger exchange I did with the boys? It was fun seeing all the blogs I love come to life as we received packages from all over the country!

IMG_1299

two | Spring Teaser

We had a couple glorious days of weather in Virginia (66 degrees!) that necessitated a trip to the playground, a walk outside in balmy rain, and lots and lots of rocket launching in the backyard!

IMG_1943

IMG_1316

three | Children’s Museum

We celebrated our nephew’s 5th birthday at a local Children’s Museum over the weekend and had the whole place to ourselves!

IMG_1333

four | Brixx

We found a loophole at one of our favorite wood-fired pizza places. They offer a free item off the kids’ menu for each adult entree purchased (as long as you have the children to match), so we ordered a pizza for our toddler… aaaand a dessert s’more pizza for our infant. Sooo yummy. And hubby, if you’re reading this, don’t even bother looking too hard for the leftovers. 

IMG_1954

S’more pizza

five | Valentines Day!

I finally replaced the Christmas print in our entryway with a fun gold foil-ish Valentine printable. My littlest also brought home a cute craft he made at school!

IMG_1329

IMG_1257

Happy Valentines Day! And… I’ll leave you with the Angry HoneyBear love nugget my husband left for me to find.

IMG_1330





Blogger Valentine Card Exchange!

11 02 2015

I recently participated in a Valentine Card Exchange with other mommy bloggers. I’m just going to say THANK YOU to them right now, because as a mommy I know how incredibly hard it is to pull off something like this! Thinking of an idea, actually making the crafts or shopping for small gifts, addressing all those envelopes, and trekking to the post office in some cases… things that take a million times longer now that we have kids. And you took the time to do it for my little boys. Here’s my recap of our recent mailbox adventures!

Before the Valentines arrived…

My boys were asked to prepare 40 Valentines to take to their daycare friends for a party last week, and for this exchange, we made 13 extra sets to send to other kids all around the country – California, Pennsylvania, Florida, Texas, Wisconsin, Indiana, and more!

I brought back a few old favorites this year without spending any money. First stop, Big Box Home Store for paint samples. I tried to find colors with love-y themes or my kids’ names.

Valentine Card Exchange 3

E broke up a grab bag of old crayons. He loved his job, and I’ll probably spend the next year UNbreaking him of that habit. We mixed up the colors and melted them in the oven (with the light on so we could watch). These made pretty bars of recycled crayons.

Valentine Card Exchange 2

Valentine Card Exchange 1

The hardest part was peeling the wrappers off the crayons (I used a toothpick, my husband used a knife. E used his fingers). I punched heart-shaped holes in the cards and bound them together with ribbon. I wrote notes to a few of the mommies. For the blogger exchange, I tied them with baker’s twine and wrapped them in tissue paper to mail.

Valentine Card Exchange 4

Once sent, it was time for cards to flood in from all over the country! And they did! It was fun to see all the creative ideas and far away zip codes. It really made the blogs I read come to life. Here are some of our mailbox goodies!

***

From Amy@lukeandamysmith.blogspot.com – Amy, can I just say that our life timelines are so similar??
IMG_1303

***

From Ashley@wordsaboutwaverly.blogspot.com:

IMG_1299
Can you even.
***

From Chrissy@simplejoysblog.com, one of the exchange hostesses:

IMG_1313
***

From Colleen@colleenandkeith.com – a beautiful pennant cutout Valentine with painted hearts!:

IMG_1340

***

From Courtney@sweet-turtle-soup.blogspot.com

IMG_1349

And yes. I have a gazillion BoxTops I need to turn in to my school. Yikes.

***

From Emma, another hostess for this exchange and a real-life friend of mine – love bugs in mason jars!:

IMG_1306
***

From Erinn@strawberryswingandthings.com – Minion tattoos in hand-painted envelopes!:

IMG_1304
***
From Nina@thejonijourney.blogspot.com – cards to match her son’s DIY painted Valentine mailboxes, and stickers are always a win at our house!:
IMG_1341
 ***
From Sara@runninglawyer@blogspot.com. Your email still cracks me up. These are too cute!
IMG_1342
***
***
I loved finding new blogs to follow after participating in this exchange!




Day in the Life | Mommy – School Counselor

7 02 2015

I recently posted a day in the life while I was home on maternity leave. I read a post about how we should capture pictures of everyday life so that one day, when our kids grow up, we’ll remember things like what we looked like sitting around the dinner table. How my son’s bedroom is arranged, since it changes often. Things I think I’ll remember, but I probably won’t. So here’s a snapshot of how differently things look now that I’m back to a different kind of work – this was Wednesday, February 4, 2015. E is 2.5 years old, and Sage is 4 months. (My husband and I are both 30.)

Sage typically wakes up between 4:30 and 5 AM to nurse, weekday or not. Today, I nursed him at 5 and showered at 5:30. By 6, I woke up big brother E, packed pump parts and bottles (they dry overnight) for pumping milk at work, and grabbed several cloth diapers out of the dryer to pack in the baby’s diaper bag, since those were also not dry last night. E is required to wear Pull-Ups to school now that he’s in a potty-training class, so I only had to pack them for Sage. At 6:30, I changed Sage’s diaper, got him dressed, and finished bagging up the 40 Valentines we had to take to school for the kids’ Valentines parties Friday. (The glue on them had become ineffective, so I had to put them in Ziploc bags last-minute). 6:40 meant time to fire up the Keurig and nurse the baby while eating my cereal. I aim to leave the house by 6:45 to get to work by 7:40 before I’m late and the buses arrive, blocking the parking lot.

IMG_1206

I like to pretend I have Starbucks every day. It’s the little things.

We are already running late b/c of the Valentines, so at 6:50 I quickly loaded up the car and the kids and drove to daycare. To get both boys and all their stuff inside, I wear Sage in my Boba 3G, carry his diaper bag on my shoulder, carry a separate bag that contains baby milk, E’s water bottle, a cloth diaper wet bag, and E’s lunchbox – all things that go to different places once at school. Elijah usually carries his homework, and today he carried his Valentines and the juice boxes for his class party. I have to leave daycare by 7:20 to get to work on time, so I hurriedly dropped off E with his stuff for the day, kissed him goodbye, and headed to the nursery with Sage. I hung up his diaper bag, put the wet bag in his cubby, put his 4 bottles of breastmilk in his tub in the fridge, and fill out a BabyGram about how his morning has gone so far, noting when he woke up, ate, and got his diaper changed, and any other instructions for the day. All of this happens in separate parts of a room with lots of baby gates, so I open and close at least 8 baby gates to get everything and everyone situated.

Back in the car, I took my first sip of coffee at 7:20 and listen to my favorite Christian radio station – the commute to and from work is my only quiet time during the day, weaving in and out of tractor-trailors on busy interstates.

7:40 – I arrived at work, bypassing the donuts a local church had set out for teachers. My hubby and I pinky-swore that we would go a whole year without eating a donut. LOL! Today, teachers got free FitBit Zips in our boxes. This never happens. So excited to use mine.

IMG_1230

My office was a mess with school supplies someone dropped off for our students – I’m so grateful for the community support we have, and I love opening new school supplies and distributing them! I think it was from the donut people, but I sent a quick email to our secretary to be sure, so I can mail a thank-you note.

IMG_1233

I had sidewalk duty at 7:45, spoke on the announcements because it was National School Counseling Week, and prepared for the day. The morning flew by with teaching all my classes, and by lunchtime I was more-than-ready to pump – 5 hours after I last fed the baby. I had to wait so long that I overfilled one bottle and spilled. After spending my own lunchtime pumping, I had cafeteria duty.

IMG_1136

After 40 minutes of opening sticky food containers for kids and managing the overall volume of the cafeteria, the rest of my day is spent putting out small fires – meeting about students, meeting with parents, counseling students, making phone calls, and facilitating small groups. We have lots of other projects on our plate, like designing the school yearbook, coordinating Career Fair, organizing parent volunteers, etc., but I enjoy all of those tasks. Every day is truly different.

I carve a few minutes in my afternoon to pump once more. I don’t have any staff coverage, so my pumping schedule varies every day, and I get interrupted every now and then mid-session despite my efforts of locking the door and hanging a “Do not disturb” sign COVERING the door handle and lock. I normally have to ask my coworker to leave the room, but on Wednesdays he works at another school. After a frigid car duty outside, I pack up my things to leave – school bag (nautical), pump bag (stripes), lunch bag, and some lesson plan materials.

IMG_1234

This was the first Wednesday I didn’t have an after-school meeting, so at 3:40, I left work and was finally able to eat a snack in the car. Nursing makes me so hungry! Chick-fil-a is doing a free coffee promotion all this month, so I swung by at 3:58 and picked up an iced vanilla coffee from the drive-thru before getting my kids. Four minutes out of the way for me-time before our marathon afternoon.

IMG_1235

At 4:05, I arrived at daycare. I’m getting much more organized about pickup now that I have a system, and by 4:25, I am heading home. By 4:40, we arrive home with everyone and everything unloaded from the car. That has to be a record – usually it’s around 5 or later.

IMG_1236

BREATHE. For a split second, we’re all safely inside.

And then the NEEDS begin.

Both kids are usually crying at this point from NEEDS. Daycare sent a full bottle home, so I gave that to Sage at 5:04 – he crushed it (E insisted on helping), then comfort-nursed at 5:11, which was good for both of us.

IMG_1238

While we nursed, E hid  in the bathroom upstairs while he was supposed to be picking out a diaper because he poops his pants as soon as we arrive home. Every day. Like clockwork. I changed both boys’ diapers and made it funny for E this time by cramming both of them together in the pack ‘n play.

IMG_1244

I started the process of unloading all of our bags, just to wash everything and get them reloaded for tomorrow. I fill up four new bottles for tomorrow from bottles I pumped previously. I always aim to send 16 ounces to school. Luckily, Sage took to simple Avent bottles, which are easier to wash than the Playtex VentAire bottles E used.

IMG_1245

IMG_1246

I folded more diapers from this morning’s laundry, and my husband came home and started dinner at 5:45. Sage fell asleep at 6. I unpacked his dirty diapers from the wet bag and started a load of laundry – that whole process took less than 5 minutes. On Tuesdays and Thursdays at this time, I sneak in a run on the treadmill.

IMG_1247

We ate dinner together – lots of getting up from the table –  and Sage spit up at least five times from the milk overdose. E doesn’t eat much dinner and read books beside the table despite our best efforts to entice him back to his food.

IMG_1248

IMG_1249

I nursed Sage again at 7:00 and gave him a bath while my husband washed baby bottles and used pump parts downstairs. At 7:30, I set out the boys’ clothes for tomorrow and enlisted E’s help in cleaning the mess he made the night before.

IMG_1250

I zipped Sage into his HannaJams and played with him while my husband gave E a bath.

IMG_1253

IMG_1254

At 7:50, I nursed Sage again and finished folding the morning’s laundry. Sage was asleep at 8:25 in his rock n’ play sleeper beside our bed. I finished snapping all the diapers and repacked the diaper bag for tomorrow. At 8:45, I went in E’s room to get him to sleep, and he fell asleep at 9:45, when I finally snuck out.

IMG_1256

At 10 pm, I responded to some emails that were desperately overdue, ordered a birthday gift for our nephew (thank you, Amazon Prime, because the party is Sunday), setup my new FitBit to use the next day, and paid some bills – another task that I sometimes do during my lunchtime at work. I’m usually in bed between 11 and 12, and tonight it was 11. Small victory!

I am so blessed with my two sweet boys and my amazing husband. I hope that this post will help me to remember that the days are long, but the years are short.





Five on Friday | Growing Like Weeds

6 02 2015

Finalllllly back for a Five on Friday. Last week I fell asleep tucking my son into his new bed EVERY SINGLE NIGHT. I literally got nothing done but had endless toddler cuddles. That’s okay with me. This week, I was more on top of things. I picked up free CFA iced vanilla coffee every day after work and hopped on the treadmill once we were all home and settled in the evenings – thus keeping me awake.

one | My kids had a sports-themed jersey spirit day at school last week in preparation for the Super Bowl. I love their theme days! And any chance to dress them alike. My husband made their bracelets.

IMG_1150

two | We set up the bunk beds and finally decided on bedding – jersey knit sheets with arrow prints and the softest quilts known to man. For a pop of interest, I’m going to make pillows and a throw-quilt for the end of the bottom bunk. Ignore the wall art, that’s all leaving.

IMG_1173

three | I sewed this little guy a beanie to match his Valentine leggings, which he is quickly outgrowing. IMG_1103

four | And speaking of outgrowing, I’ve been making piles of baby clothes and gear to consign. I’m entering about 200 items into the computer for tagging and have my dropoff scheduled in a few weeks. I bought most of it secondhand, so it will be nice to return the favor for my community.

five | For the next size up, my friend let me look through the clothes her son has outgrown before she consigns them. I was able to purchase tons of cute pieces for next year. Win-win! And they’ll eventually fit Sage, too.

IMG_0988

Happy Friday!





Sage | 4 Months

27 01 2015

IMG_1043

Oh. Your little dimple. Blonde hair, blue eyes. We spent all day together yesterday while I had a snow day and sent big brother off to school! And just like that, you’re 4 months old.

Sage - 4 month collage

You breastfeed like a champ. Exclusively. Except for chocolate ice cream. Every now and then, we put a tiny dribble of chocolate ice cream on your lips and you work so hard to slurp it in. Maybe that’s why you weighed in at a whopping 16 lbs., 1 oz. at 15 weeks, when I took you to the pediatrician for your upper respiratory infection.

The ladies at daycare love you and brag about how you love tummy time, smile all day long, and are SO ticklish. They were quick to learn that you roll over as soon as you are put on your belly, so they prop you on a Boppy for tummy time and you LOVE it! And sometimes, you take 4-5.5 hour siestas. It’s true. About once a week, you take one super-long nap, and then you are good to go on tiny catnaps for the rest of the week. Somedays, you drink one bottle at daycare, and somedays, you drink 4, depending on whether it’s hibernation day for you. I never know how much to send, so I keep their freezer well-stocked! Your big brother gets to visit you throughout the day at school, although he usually comes home and reports that you were sleeping when he stopped by. He loves to read with you at home! We nicknamed you “Savory,” so he’ll either call you “Baby Sage” or “Savory Sage.” You love the swing at school but hate it at home! (I don’t blame you; theirs is MUCH fancier!)

IMG_1086

You LOVE diaper changes. And baths. You’ve long outgrown your newborn cloth diapers and wear mostly BumGenius cloth diapers (Freetime and 4.0), as well as Blueberries and FuzziBunz. So you’re currently sharing diapers with your brother. You’ll never let us live that down.

You refuse to take a bottle or nurse if something or someone around you is loud. You unlatch, swivel your head around, and glare at the disturbance. You HATE being startled, even for a sneeze, and you quiver your bottom lip for a long dramatic pause before losing it. It really is the saddest, cutest thing. Sometimes while you’re nursing, I catch you sneaking a peek at the TV.

You’ve been sleeping through the night, although lately you might be up one or two times to nurse. You’re pretty consistent about waking up around the five-o’clock hour to start your day, which works well with my work schedule since we’re out the door by 6:45.

You are pretty solidly in 9-month (Carter’s) clothes and are busting out of your Gap 6-12 month clothes. Even though you get a lot of hand-me-downs from your brother, I’ve bought you some “new-to-us” pieces from Instagram shops that are the right season, plus a few new clothes at the BabyGap outlet, justifying these by tagging the clothes you’ve already outgrown to consign. I also gave away a few bags of your baby clothes. Sad!

I’ve put your amber teething necklace on you a few times, because yours hands and fingers are constantly in your mouth. Sometimes while nursing, you’ll make enough room to sneak your fist in there as well. You also like your Wubbanub pacifiers, although you could probably take them or leave them.

You understand buzz words, like “bath,” “diaper change,” “milk,” “mommy,” “daddy,” “Brother Bear” and “hungry” because those words make you flirt, kick your feet, puff out your chest, and drool. I’m pretty positive you say “hi” on a regular basis, too. Oh and you are obsessed with anything Taylor Swift sings. You can laugh like no other and make all kinds of gooey sounds with your voice. When you cry, you go rigid, squint your eyes, and cry big tears.

Your carseat is officially too heavy for me to carry (according to my chiropractor), so I wear you everywhere, even into daycare each morning. You usually fall right to sleep. You even come to church in the carrier and last about 45 minutes in the service with us before needing maintenance. You filled a diaper so loudly on Sunday that 3 rows around us looked at us half laughing/half sympathizing.

Mommy is finally back to her pre-pregnancy weight (and 5 lbs. lighter than my pre-pregnancy weight with E!!), thanks to the stomach flu over the holiday break. I run about once a week for an hour, but it must be the nursing that has helped the most. I feel like I have a long way to go to feel “normal” again. I am running a 10k on Valentines Day and a mud run 4-miler right after, so I really need to get back into consistent training. But it’s so much more fun to snuggle with you in bed!

You sleep beside our bed in your Rock n Play sleeper, although I’d say we need to retire that ASAP after you spun facedown while I was eating lunch with you the other day – yikes! Big brother E has been sleeping just fine in our guest room (queen) bed, so once we get his bunk bed all set up, the crib is yours! I’m not ready for you to leave our room though, so maybe we’ll start buckling you in the Rock n Play.

IMG_1055

IMG_1084

Happy 4 months, Savory Sage!





Five on Friday | Knots and Knits

16 01 2015

Finally linking back up with Five on Friday with DarciChristinaApril, and Natasha, and oh hey, Friday with Karli and Amy.

one | Tying the Knot

My little brother got married on Saturday in Williamsburg! I loved getting the boys all GQed up for the big day. Full recap here. So happy for my brother and his WIFE!

IMG_0776

two | Recipe Keepers

Last week, I tried out a French Onion soup casserole and a strawberry grilled chicken salad. I also made a week’s worth of black bean/veggie/lime salads to take to work. And spur-of-the-moment gingersnap ice cream sandwiches. My husband made a crockpot lasagna, and I made a few large braided spaghetti breads, which I’ve made before. (I don’t like spaghetti, but I like this!) All yummy recipes – all keepers.

1-15-15 new recipes

IMG_0869

three | Pregnancy & Postpartum Fitness Class

On Monday night, I went to a postpartum fitness class, which was basically a demonstration by a personal trainer. She was helpful, but I was overwhelmed with the amount of stretches she showed us. I wish there had been more space so that we could try out the stretches, but we sat in chairs and watched her.

four | Fun Mail Day

Through Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library program, my kids get a free book each month. In January, they got “Meet Me at the Moon.” And then out of the blue, my husband’s aunt sent the boys matching pajamas. How did she know?

1-15-15 fun mail

five | Sewing Machine

I’ve been wanting to try out my new sewing machine, so I ordered half a dozen knit fabrics and downloaded several free patterns to print. On Wednesday we had a snow day, so I spent the kids’ naptime setting up my machine and getting everything together to make the boys some clothes! I started with Valentine’s leggings to pair with Sage’s mocc collection, and I’d like to make matching knot beanies, too.

IMG_0861

1-14-15 leggings

Happy Friday! It’s a teacher workday for me!








Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 84 other followers