Wednesday, August 31, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Defying Gravity

This song is my new mantra.

A Funny thing happened on the way to my friend Karin's house last week. She had written on my FB page that if I wanted some company on a walk, she'd love to go a couple times a week. She was going to have a couple gals over to her place last Thursday to do it. I thought, sure, ok. I've stalled out on our MOPS group's Biggest Loser contest, after 14 pounds, I just couldn't lick that stupid 15th pound, and I was the bloat princess for drowning my sorrows in carby goodness. Walking regularly might be just the jump start I needed.

I went to Karin's and there were a couple gals there I didn't know, all dressed to Run. Yes. Run. Ipods, stretchy shorts and little tops. Oh yeah. Not frump goddesses like me, these gals were ready to run.

Only I don't run. I have said for decades my body is not built to run. My boobs are too big, we joke if I run, I'll end up with two black eyes. Plus, the actual jiggling....hurts. Gravity literally drags me down. So ever since puberty, running has not been the sport for me.

Then again, I don't really have a sport.

I asked Karin for the scoop, and apparently we were starting the C25K (From Couch to 5K plan) from nonrunner to runner in 8 weeks. And here's the kicker, when I tried to balk, she asked if I'd ever run. No. Well then you can't say you can't do it if you've never tried. Stick with it for the 8 weeks, and she swears we'll see a change.

OK. I'm no quitter. So I tried. I can do anything once.

Only it seems I didn't suck at it.

I didn't pass out. I didn't die. Felt like I might there for a while, but I didn't.

I was Woman. Hear me roar!

Karin has this bloggy mantra of her one, Sweat once a day. Check us out 3.12 miles with a warmup walk of 5 minutes, then alternating running 60 seconds and walking 90 seconds. Oh yeah, we sweat. Sweated? Whatever, we were dripping.

I must confess I was really surprised I didn't die. The next day I was not flat on my back all day. I was having a little trouble walking. I'd been cooking all day Thursday and Friday, I think the hardwoods disagree with my heels. So my feet hurt more than anything. But I hopped on the scale Friday morning (weigh in day for Biggest Loser) and I was down 2 pounds. In one day. Really? Maybe there's something to this running insanity.

I returned for more torture on Sunday night, did the same pattern, in 55 minutes, plus to cool down a bit more I walked a little further. 3.25 miles. Not too shabby. I will confess I got a little dizzy at one point, and was worried I might pass out, but everybody slowed WAY DOWN to stay with me, and when I caught my breathe, I found I was able to run again. It's weird.

Really, It is the weirdest thing. I hurt like hell, but it's a non-specified pain, achy, not the specific muscle spasm I'm used to. This I can recover from. And I can still go.

Last night I went back for more. We kicked it up a notch, we did the 5 minute warmup, then ran 90 seconds, and walked 2 minutes. It felt hard, I hurt more when I started than at the end. Weird.

So, I think I'm going to stick with it. "I'm going to Try Defying Gravity."

Freezer Cooking

Last week we had our August meeting for our Freezer Cooking club. At my house.

And Sam had a ton of fun helping me cook.

We did a bonus bread exchange on top of our regular meals, and I got all domestic and crap, making crescent rolls from scratch.

The first batch was a little tricky, but once I got the hang of it, the second batch flew by. Turns out crescent rolls aren't that hard after all. And they smelled so good, all sweet and yeasty. Can't wait to try them!

My main meal was Chicken Lasagna Rolls. And this was my first time making lasagna of any kind. The last time, I did florentine rollups in MOPS as one of our day things, the noodles were already done for us to save time. In real life, making lasagna noodles is kind of a pain in the butt. I never realized, but none of my pans are big enough for them, so I have to stand there, watching and holding until they cook enough to bend, so I can fold them into the pot. Little inconvenient when I'm trying to do other things too.

But they turned out great. Sam even ate a mistake noodle straight up for lunch. This was the first time I had tried new recipes out on the girls. So this time I made these chicken lasagna rolls. After tasting, I think they need to be a little lighter on the broccoli, and they need more cheese. But hey, can you ever have too much cheese? I don't think so.

If you are interested in some of the recipes we use or anything, our group just started a blog. Enjoy! Bon appetit!

Tuesday, August 30, 2011

A Fair Day, Part 2

Hello again from the Indiana State Fair! I took a bazillion pictures of the boys, they had such a wonderful time.

My sweet little farmers gave gathering eggs and other goodies a try. Love the hats.

Chris and Sam ride on tractor trikes. (OK Daddy's pushing Sam, but at least his legs almost reached.)

The boys meet a sheep and her little lamb in the old barn.

Chris spies a catfish as big as he is.

Sam was more fond of the trout.

But the exhibit of snowmobiles was a Big Hit for both boys!

Chris told me he wanted a tattoo from the lady giving henna tattoos. Sure, I let him.

I even joined him. I love henna tattoos!

Then off to the midway to ride some rides.

It was great that Sam was tall enough to ride some of the kiddie rides!

Chris and Sam picked the bumblebee ride. No big surprise.

Boys go wild on the ferris wheel.

RAWR! is Dinosaur for I Love You.

Say Cheese!

Somebody thinks he's all set and ready to be a Boy Scout. Personally, Mommy can't wait either.

A Fair the year of the Soybean.

Sunday, August 28, 2011

A Fair Day, Part 1

Last week, Chris had a Riley day. He'd had a couple bumpy days at school, and then he had a couple appointments at Riley, just checkups and that sort of thing. But we had won free tickets to the State Fair. And Frankly, we've been under so much stress, a little half day off sounded right up our alley.

So yes, I was that parent, that took a mental health day (or half a day) the second full week of school. Don't tell Chris...or his teacher.

So First Stop after Riley (because I'm a dork) was the Zoo Gardens. Apparently, they had a Victoria Lily that was blooming. They only bloom for 24 hours and are really rare, so since we were in the area, we popped over for a photo opportunity.

The lilies in the water gardens were especially gorgeous that day.

Check out that dragonfly landing on the storks beak. So cool.

This is the Victoria Lily.

And some sweetboys you may know.

One good family picture, but it's hard to expect much when setting the camera on a bench and letting it take the pic itself.

Next up, I hope to actually tell you about making it to the Fair. But no more time to blog now.

Wednesday, August 24, 2011

Wordless Wednesday

Tuesday, August 23, 2011

Girls gone wild

This past Saturday night, we got a nifty opportunity. We had my sister and her family over...for a slumber party. Chris affectionately calls them "The Beths" because my sister is Elizabeth, and my niece Annabeth. He calls my other niece CharlieBeth. Not sure what he does about Uncle James. But anyway, Uncle James was in town ever so briefly before heading back to the Army. They are shipping him to Afghanistan next month. And he had to report to the airport at dark thirty the next morning, so we got to keep the girls for their first Slumber Party at Aunt Cathy's new house!

Not exactly a happy occasion for them, but we made the most of it. After some dinner and the kids needed to run off some energy. I swear we offered Lisa and James the opportunity to make a date of it, but somehow we just ended up having a heck of a good time playing around our place. The kids went outside. Ever try to put 4 preschoolers in 1 picture, yeah, wasn't going to happen.

But Uncle James and Aunt Lisa enjoyed tossing a few kids in the air, and we tossed back a couple Summer Shandys.

The kids decided they wanted to take a walk around the block. Ironically it wasn't the kids who actually did any of the walking. They Rode. In. Style.

Chris and Annie took off. It's kind of a scary sight, a picture of things to come, when the older (not necesarily wiser cousin) brings his car over to take his young cousins out for a spin. Oy.

Leaving the jealous youth behind.

So, about, halfway around the block, we swapped the passengers in the car.

And Oh My, Charlie went from 1 to 15 in 0.5 seconds!

Check out little miss rico suave putting her arm around Chris. She had the other one hanging out the side of the car. Oh yeah, she was Cool. And I don't think cousin Chris could've gotten anymore cool in their eyes.

Jealous siblings dash forth while the Daddys bring up the rear.

And yes, I know, it's breaking like 18 rules to have a couple kids riding in the trunk. However, the weight limit in the trunk is 50 pounds. And Sam and Annie together weigh about 44. See, there are perks for having dainty children. Driver and passenger can each be like 100, and there's not even 100 pounds of kids in there all totaled.

Chris was a super safe driver. See, he was doing the driving, while we were doing the drinking. It was a good night. But the kids were great. They only fought going to bed for about an hour. We started with all 4 in the kids room. Then bumped Charlie out to the Butler bedroom, and Sam in his bed with Daddy and Chris in the snore room. Ironically Annie was out cold first.

But morning came and brought much cuteness and more time for play. The girls played hard. Chris just wanted to watch cartoons that at first scared Annie like Transformers and Batman, but we found some Veggie Tales that she enjoyed much more.

And Charlie chased us all around. Love this girl's hair, she uses whatever she's eating as ultimate moisturizer. So precious.

Charlie and Sam are so alike in temperament, mostly pretty mellow, but when it gets ugly it gets very ugly. And Annie and Chris are Lisa incarnate, crazy feisty, but such lovers you can't enough. And we couldn't. I didn't think I'd say this, but I'm actually really looking forward to them all coming over again soon. Maybe Aunt Lisa would stay over too next time. ;)


A friend of mine posted this on FB and it got me thinking.

The girl you just called fat has been starving herself & has lost over 30lbs.
The boy you just called stupid has a learning disability & studies over 4hrs a night.
The girl you just called ugly spends hours putting on makeup...hoping people will like her.
The boy you just tripped is abused enough at home.
The girl you called "Jesus Freak" spends hours in prayer for you.
Put this as your status if you're against bullying.

I didn't. I'm not for bullying. I'm against Judgement. I'm against judging before you get to know a person. I'm on the other side, now, I get called a bully myself for speaking my heart. I have a kid they call a bully. But they don't have one that says, that kid that chased you around the schoolyard that you think is a bully has been through more medical procedures than anyone should ever have and doesn't understand that you are scared, he thinks that you're playing together, and just wants to be your friend.

Blessedly my son has a wonderful team of teachers and helpers, and they are so on top of it, they don't let anyone get a chance to be bullied. God Bless the Schools!

Back in my day, all this stuff just got ignored. And though it's directed at bullies, and back in the day I was that fat ugly girl that got teased. But now, I am a parent. And my son uses fat to describe a big person, dark to describe a skin color, not as cruel, but just as simple descriptions. I know, he's only in kindergarten. We try to focus on things but he doesn't get it. Will he ever? I don't know. It hurts my heart to think that there are people out there that may think of Chris as a bully. Are kids even going to give him a chance, are they even going to try to become his friend?

People could miss the opportunity of getting to know my Miraculous son. He's so amazing, I am so Blessed by him. Anyone that bothers to get to know him is Blessed by him. But I get angry at people that turn down the opportunity to get to know him and be loved by him. Not that it hurts Chris, I don't think it does, he is loved by many, but it hurts me. And that makes me angry. Angry at stupid people that would judge him as a bully and not listen to what he's been through, or what he's thinking, or not even bother to give him a chance to see the loving person he is. I suppose it's their loss. They don't get to feel the strength in his hugs, or his infectious laugh. Chris is a Gift from God, and anybody that doesn't bother to hear his story or get to know him is seriously Missing Out.

OK, I'm off my soapbox now.

Friday, August 19, 2011

Just keep Swimming

I'd love to say that we are doing wonderfully after moving into the new house. But we just can't seem to shake these problems that keep coming our way. We thought when we moved in mid-July, that we were mere days away from closing on the construction loan and finishing up the finished plumbing.

Not yet. Not on either. The banks have been having us send paperwork, and all kinds of craziness for weeks. It's been so long, they had to have us reappraised, and when the appraisal came back different than the original estimate, that opened up a whole new can of worms. Eric's a superchamp and keeps on sending, checking with the bank, and mortgage broker every other day. But he's working full time too. And while we thought that in moving in, it would be better, easier on him, it's really not. There's a lot of cuteness to distract. We've had 3 different plumbers now work on it, who have said it's all so easy, so close to being finished, but they only spend a day or two, and keep bumping into problems, stuff won't work like they though, they want us to buy new stuff, and we just don't have the money for it. So it waits, we buy another part, it doesn't work. Sure we could probably have finished this weeks ago if we had unlimited funds, but the bank is holding our last draw hostage until we close the construction loan. I'm so sick of being stressed about money, tired of fighting, and sick of having things unfinished all over the house. Sure the house is amazing, beautiful, breathtaking, and wonderful. But if I sit in one place too long I see all the things left undone; nails in the trim that never got covered, the doors don't match the trim, showers undone....etc. So now what? I think Eric and I look around and there's so much to be done, we forget and don't know where to begin.

However, just when I think I'm going to go bonkers, we get a ray of sunlight. Or hot running water anyway. Last night Eric got the boys bathtub screwdriver. We still don't have functioning shower controls yet, but the basics are done, and if Eric uses a screwdriver he can turn on/off the water. They took a bath in it, thrilled and ecstatic. Grandma bought them a whole bunch of Toy Story stuff to decorate their new bathroom, they've been so antsy to use it. They ran through the house dressed in Woody and Buzz towel ponchos. So crazy happy I forgot to take pictures. Then I got my first bath there too. How wonderful to be able to bathe in our own new house, after a month of coming back over to the old house for bathing and internet. We get internet on Monday. Maybe we've turned a corner.

So, like this turtle that we found at the zoo the other day: We just keep Swimming.