Thursday, February 23, 2012

I wasn't expecting 6 inches

I can hear my brother all the way from Texas saying, "That's what she said."  I thought about baiting him and putting that as my Facebook status...but it seemed too easy.   Well, what I am actually talking about is the 6 inches of snow we woke up to this morning.  It was nowhere in the weather report the night before.  "A light dusting" and "no accumulation" were the words I remembered.  But I am looking outside to yet another winter "wonderland."  This storm pushes us into first place for snowiest February on record. 
Public Enemy number one in my opinion.

The other thing that accompanied this storm was intense winds.  We had wind gust 80-100 mph last night.  It literally felt like an earthquake when you went upstairs.  And I have lived through quite a few earthquakes so I should know.  We get strong winds often due to our drastic temperature swings, but this might be the strongest wind I can remember.  My friend's husband is the manager of a Target and she said the doors blew off!  Crazy!

Anyway, our doors didn't blow off but this was the scene in our backyard this morning.

As you can see we have a tree down and a fence to repair....and more snow to scoop!  Our neighbors also lost one of their pine trees (at the top of the picture).

In other mundane news, my kids are still sick.  They both have colds but my son also has pink eye.  As far as a serious illness, I would give it like a 2 or 3 on a scale of ten.  But as far as being a hassle, I would give it a 10 plus!  Have you ever tried to put eye drops in a kid before?  If so, God bless you.  If not, I will try to explain how it goes down.

First of all, the nurse will tell you on the phone that it is a piece of cake.  This is a lie.  The only way it would be a piece of cake is if they also gave you one of these:

 Or even better some of this:
They instruct you to have your child calmly lay down and close their eyes.  Simply squeeze some drops in the corner of your child's eyes and when they blink they will slide right in.  Easy Peasy! 

Your kid is not going to be fooled with this propaganda.  They know why they are laying down.  They know you are going to stick something in their eyes.  They will have a flight or fight reaction because, let's face it, natural selection has left our gene pool full of individuals who will go to great lengths to protect their eyes.  The fools that stuck stuff in their eyes went blind and got eaten by saber tooth tigers.

This primal fear will lead you to chase your child through the house all while shouting alternating bribes and threats.  "I will give you some ice cream!  I 'm going to burn your video games!  How about a cookie!  You are going to get a time out!"  This only increases the fear in your child and is highly unproductive. 

You finally resort to guerrilla warfare.  When your child thinks you have finally given up, when it seems safe to emerge from hiding, you let them and then you hide.  When they least expect it you jump out and tackle them to the ground.  This seems cruel, but so does letting your child's eye fall out due to extreme infection.  You then use a move that you probably learned while watching The Macho Man Randy Savage on WWF.  With your child pinned to the ground, and obviously screaming, you aim the drops at the wildly moving object.  Did some get in?  You don't know and at this point you don't care.

Repeat 4 times daily for 5-7 days.  You are convinced they have you do it 4 times a day in the hopes that at least one of those times drops actually get in.  You are also convinced that all the people who tell you that "these years just fly by" never had a child with pink eye.
To my fellow Coloradoans, I hope you didn't wake up in Oz and that there wasn't too much damage to your houses.  To everyone else, how's your weather?  Hope it is better than ours!! 

Who has some good sick kid stories??

Wednesday, February 22, 2012

Under House Arrest

I have finally (I think) nailed down my racing schedule for the summer.  At first I only wanted to do one triathlon and that's it.  But in true racing addict fashion, I changed my mind and wanted to do everything.  I think I have settled somewhere in the middle with this schedule:
  • 3 triathlons-mini sprint, sprint, and oly (aka, the variety pack)
  • 1 10K (Bolder Boulder)
  • 1 Century(?)  I am little apprehensive about this one.  I have no idea how to train for it or how hard it will be.  Julie, you better help me out here!!
My pre-training schedule is going to be 3 days running, 2 days swimming, 2 days cycling, 3 days lifting.  So basically, I need to find a calendar that contains 10 day weeks...or double/triple up I guess.  Okay, are you still awake?  That was pretty boring stuff.

With my plan in place I printed out a calendar and filled in the schedule with all my workouts.  It was beautiful and I felt in control and confident that my pre-training was off to a great start!  So every mom knows this, but once you have a schedule in place your kids get sick and throw you completely off.  It is one of  Murphy's Laws of Motherhood (Hmmm, I smell a future post there).

Training plan out the window!  Kids were home from school (no outside workouts), couldn't take them to the gym (infecting others is frowned upon), and husband had to work (someone has to pay for all the races I'm signed up for).  It was time to improv, and I am notoriously bad at this....but I was determined to at least get in some sort of workout.

I scoured the laundry room for my hand weights.  They were found!  I completed an at home weight workout that I am actually still very sore from!  I learned a few things along the way.  One, I really need to vacuum my floor.  Two, even when you say, "don't get on my back," your children will try to ride you when you are doing a plank.  But it got done.  Success!

Cardio was more of a challenge.  I tried running up and down the stairs.  After I tripped a couple times I decided I didn't want my kids to see me snap my neck in half.  I think that would cause some long term trauma.  So I tried running loops around my house.  We have a loop that goes from entryway to living room to kitchen to dining room to formal living room and back to entry way.  Since I live in a house and not a mansion, this loop takes approximately 10 seconds to complete.  You think a treadmill is boring?  That is really boring!  Plus, the angle was messing with my feet and one of my dogs was chasing me around nipping at my heels and one of the other dogs was barking incessantly.  Have I ever mentioned how much I love those dogs?  The old lazy dog slept on the couch completely unaware of the hoopla.  She is perfect, by the way.

So I was striking out and had to resort to trainer.  Blah.  I don't love the treadmill but really it is not that bad.  Of course I would much rather run outside.  This sentiment goes quadruple for cycling.  I love riding outside and despise riding inside.  That said, I think I could stomach an indoor date with my bike if I had a trainer that was a little more up to date.  But I don't, I have a trainer from (and I'm guessing here) the 70's.

Why on earth would I have a trainer from the 70's?  Ah, here is where you get a little insight into my world.  My husband's official job title is "Antiques Dealer."  Sounds very PBS doesn't it?  But in actuality he rehabs furniture and repurposes stuff, very little of which is actually antique (if you are so inclined to see his work, this is his website).  He kind of does what the guys on American Pickers do, except he deals more with furniture and instead of driving all over the country he just goes to local garage sales.  He also sells stuff on ebay and flips houses for us to rent out.  It is a really hard job to explain to people and it kinda sounds made up.  I'm pretty sure everyone thinks he really sells drugs...he doesn't.

Whenever I need something, I will say, "hey, I need such and such."  The upside- it shows up.  The downside- sometimes it is not of the standard (or era) that I would have chosen for myself.  And this is what happened with the bike trainer.  It is so old, in fact, that my road bike doesn't work on it.  I have to use my mountain bike.  Also, it is so loud that even with the TV on volume 100 (no lie) I still can't really hear it.  But we do what we have to do, right??  Cardio done.  Success!
My antique bike trainer
Check out the logo.  70's?  Early 80's?  60's???

Hopefully my kids will be better soon and I can get back to my regular schedule, but until then I will be making due at home.  I have been promised boot legged copies of P90X from my best friend so as soon as I get those I will be adding that to the at home repertoire as well.

What is your favorite at home work out?

Anyone else have a hard time explaining their significant other's job?

 Is P90X going to kill me??

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Conversations Animal Mothers Would Never Have

I have often thought what strange creatures us human mothers are.  We like to think of ourselves as more advanced, but sometimes I think the animals are the ones that have it all figured out.  This made me to wonder what animal moms would talk about if they were as neurotic as humans are.  Then of course I made some pictures.  Here are "Conversations animal mothers would never have:"

Okay, that one was baaaad. 

Go call your mom and tell her thank you for being so neurotic!!

Thursday, February 16, 2012

Runner vs. I run

For a long time I couldn't call myself a runner.  I would say, "I run," but not "I'm a runner."  I don't know why really, but I guess I imagined a runner was way more hardcore than I was.  A runner had completed marathonS.  A runner was a professional.  A runner didn't jiggle so much.  You know, stuff like that.  I finally decided to change the way I thought and I started to call myself a runner, jiggle and all. 

So what's the difference?  Is there a difference?  How can you tell if you are a "runner" or if you fall into the category of "I run."  Here are a few things I have observed:


I run


I run
First thing you think of when you hear Bart Yasso:
I run

First thing you think of when you hear "lube"
I run

The place your GPS goes:
I run
First thing you think of when you hear "Negative Splits:"

I run
 Thing you do immediately after you say fartlek:

I run
That was for you Tricia ;)

Designer Clothing:

I run
Easy Day:

I run


I run

Thing you describe as cute:

I run


First thing you think of when you hear "The Dreadmill:"


I run

I run

How many miles in a marathon?
I run

I'm of course just joking, but I do think there is a difference between someone who runs and someone who is a runner.  I don't think it has anything to do with how fast or far you run, but rather your attitude about running.  If you love it, if it energizes you, if it is something you look forward to doing, I think you are a runner.  If it is something you have to make yourself do, put off doing, make excuses not to do, or dread, you just run.  I am proud to say that even though I don't drink spinach smoothies, that I am a runner! 

Are you a runner or do you just run?

Have any other differences you'd like to add to the list?  I'd love to hear yours!!!!

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

The post where I share way too much...

When you are chubby, have bad skin, excel at science, and have a tragic sense of fashion, Valentine's Day is not ever your favorite day of the year.  It is, in fact, your least favorite day of the year.  It is the day that SCREAMS nobody loves you, you are alone, and maybe that isn't going to change.  It is the day that makes it blatantly obvious that you single and you don't want to be.  You want to get the roses, and the cards, and dinner, and especially the chocolate.  You want to feel special and you can almost forget it every other day of the year, but this day will not let you forget it.  You hate this day and you kinda feel like Hallmark invented it just to torture you.  You dress in all black as an informal protest, kind of a metaphorical middle finger to all the happy couples out there.  You end the horrible day watching When Harry Met Sally with your dates for the evening: Ben, Jerry, and Jose.  Yup, Valentine's Day SUCKS!

When I finally did have a special someone on Valentine's Day, you can only imagine how important it was to me.  All those years of torture were finally over!  I was engaged and the rest of my Valentine's Days would be fabulous!  Happily ever after indeed!!

 And that first year it was fabulous.  We were engaged after all and I could still back out of the deal, right?  The next year was our first year of marriage and that is when Kevin dropped the "I think Valentine's Day is over commercialized and I'm not into it."  Ummmm, what now???  I waited a long time to have this day not suck and now my husband was telling me he didn't want to do the cards, flowers, dinners, etc.  I wanted the etc.  I wanted him to express his love in big romantic gestures.  All the Valentine's Days I had stayed home watching Rom Coms had taught me that big sweeping romantic gestures were everything I always wanted.  But that is not who I married.  He is not a big sweeping romantic gesture kind of guy. 

As you can imagine this has been a struggle.  Whenever two people in a relationship show love in a different ways there is going to be a bit of conflict.  Kevin thinks he is being practical, which he is, but it leaves me feeling unloved.  Although I know my husband loves me and would be very offended that I feel unloved, when he doesn't do something on special days it really hurts me.  I am that chubby girl with the bad skin all over again and it sucks. 

Valentine's Day was coming up and I of course prepared myself to be underwhelmed with the bare minimum.  We have settled into a give each other a card and go out to dinner routine so that is what I expect.  I brought up going out to dinner and my dear husband responded with, "Going out on Valentine's is so cliche?"  My response back to him was, "So is having sex on Valentine's Day."  I felt I had made it clear in my own smart ass way that he better be doing something to celebrate how much he freaking loves me.  I am a delight after all!

So yesterday came and no mention of dinner plans.  So I thought I would make a special dinner at home.  At least I would still get a card, right?

It was a beast of a day.  The kids were crazy, I had a horrible headache.  I managed to pull it together and make our dinner and put the kids to bed.  I then hand my husband his card.  He responds with, "Oh I forgot to get you a card."  And we have hit a new low for Valentine's Day.  I pretended I didn't care.  I have a wonderful husband who does a lot of things right.  He is faithful, and kind, and respectful to me.  He works soooo hard for our family.  We have fun together and we are a great team in so many ways.  But guess what??  None of that matters if you forget to do something, anything on Valentine's Day!!!!!! 

So this is my special plea to all men (specifically my husband).  Do something super nice for your lady on Valentine's Day.  It is a big deal to us!!  We have been brainwashed by Hallmark and Hollywood to want these things.  We totally care if we don't get them!!!  Men, guess what?  It is more important than ever to do something for your gal because we have Facebook!!  All day long your girl's friends will be posting the romantic things that their fella did for them.  They will be bombarded by photos and stories and check-ins at romantic hotspots.  If your wife sees all this right after she made dinner, put the kids to sleep, and did the dishes, she is going to be pisssed, but mostly just hurt.  Valentine's Day is an over-commercialized made-up holiday.  We know that!  But it doesn't matter, we still want to feel like we are the most important, special person in your life.  We still want to be swept off our feet every once in awhile.  We want this:


How do you feel about Valentine's Day??

Any other husbands/boyfriends in the dog house because my husband can use the company??   

Favorite Rom Com?  Mine is obviously When Harry Met Sally.

Monday, February 13, 2012

Finishing Is Winning

Whether you know it or not, your children are watching you.  The first time I truly realized this was in the car.  My son was 2 at the time and we were sitting at a red light.  The light turned green and my little guy yelled, "Go moron!" Ummm, I'm pretty sure he heard this from his dad...because of course I'm a classy lady who would never say something like that.

Yes, whether you want them to or not, your kids are watching...and apparently listening to you.  Our actions shape our kids more than we know.  This can be a good thing, this can be a bad thing.  I'm sure both of my children will have road rage issue, but hopefully they will pick up on some of my good habits as well.  Being a runner/triathlete, I of course want one of those things to be a love of physical fitness.  I want them to find activities that they love and if running happens to be one of them, well of course I'll be thrilled.

I have been talking up racing to my son for awhile and finally looked up some kids races.  This is Colorado, we like to recruit em young here, so there were a lot of races to choose from.  We picked the Valentine's Day race at Wash Park and signed him up.  He was super excited...until the race started getting closer.  He began having fears about the race.  What if I don't win?  What if I can't finish?  What if I don't win?  Do you think I will win?  He was very concerned with winning and really wanted nothing to do with this race if he couldn't win.  I think it is an oldest kid thing (said the middle child).

Well, what are we suppose to do as parents here??  I want my child to try his best and know that in life you need to work hard to get rewards, but at the same time I don't want him to be so paralyzed with the fear of failure that he doesn't ever try anything.  How do we push our kids to succeed without stressing them out?  Basically, how do I not screw up my kid here?  Therapy is expensive, y'all.

I sat down with my son and explained that in a race like this, finishing is winning.  Every kid that crosses the finish line is a winner.  Everyone was going to get a ribbon, no matter how long it took them.  Mommy never crosses the finish line first...ever!  But every time mommy crosses that finish line, she has won.  I told Mason that the only way he could lose was if he chose not to go.  I kept emphasizing that finishing is winning.

Motivational speaking is apparently NOT my calling because the day of the race came and my son said he didn't want to go.  He was sure that he couldn't do it.  I looked at my husband with complete frustration.  That is my pet peeve!  I HATE when people say, "oh I can't do that," especially when they have never even tried!  I hate it!!  And here my own son was saying it!!  This was worse than the time he said he loved snow!!  So in a moment of awesome parenting, I said, "Oh yes you are doing it.  Get in the car."  Feel free to nominate me for mother of the year.
Can't you see how thrilled he looks?  I am pretty sure that is the "I hate your freaking guts" face.  And if I do my job right, that will not be the last time I see it!

We made the trek out to Wash Park and lined up for the kids race.  Mason was still nervous and wasn't saying could have also been that he was frozen because it was only 12 degrees.  I know if he had it his way he would be at home where failure was not threatening him...but that just wasn't okay with me.  I think sometimes you need to push your kids out of their comfort zone... because if you don't, they will never move out of your house.

Again, can you see how thrilled he looks??

The count down started and then we were off.  He ran, he had fun, he finished!  He got his ribbon and we high fived and cheered together!  Then we got out butts back to the car because, like I said before, it was 12 degrees.

I told him how proud I was of him and asked him if he wanted to race again.  He said no.....well yes, but only if it was warmer.  That's my boy!!

The way home was filled with lots of questions about how many people were ahead of him and how many people were behind him.  Still being very concerned with his rank, but not devastated that he was not the first kid across the finish line.  I'll take it!

This race started out completely about physical fitness.  I wanted my child to gain a love of a sport I am passionate about.  But it turned into so much more for me.  I don't want the fear of failure or lack of perfection to rule my son's life.  I hated hearing him say, "I can't do it."  Those are the ugliest words to me and I know we will be working on not saying them for many years to come.  He is cautious and sensitive and I need to respect that about him, but I think I also need to "encourage" him to get out there and conquer his fears.  It is a balancing act.

Here is one last picture of Mason with his ribbon.  It very appropriately says, "Finishing is Winning."  Well how about that!