Saturday, November 30, 2013

Black Friday and Race Recovery

Today is recovery day from black Friday and all the racing you did around the stores and oh if you did run a race than today is a nice little day to just sit back and relax and rest. See you on Monday with a race recap! I love the holiday weekends to spend with my family!

Friday, November 29, 2013

Black Friday

How many hours have you been awake shopping on Black Friday??? I am like my mother and really don't like this day! I hate how crowded stores are but yes, I agree that there are some amazing sales. We might just go out for a couple of hours to get some kid stuff for Mace and baby #2.

Thursday, November 28, 2013

Happy Thanksgiving 2013

Hope you guys are having a great Turkey Day today. Good luck if you are running in a turkey trot this morning! We have our 8k that we are running in. SUPER COLD Conditions for me to be running in but I think that will be motivation to hurry up and get back to nice toasty warm house smelling like super yummy holiday feast!

Hope everyone has a safe and happy holiday today!

Wednesday, November 27, 2013

How Wonderful Life Is- vol. 4

Last installment of my Thankful Wednesday for the month of November. I hope you guys have been able to reflect on what you are thankful for too this past month.

My home: I am so thankful that I have a roof over my head to keep the cold out and shelter me from the storms of nature and of life. I consider my house a shelter from the outside world. The world is a crazy place and whenever I return home I know that I am safe and can guard those inside by the things I watch and listen to. I try to keep our home filled with love and yummy smells from the kitchen.

Over the next few months with the cold weather I love the warmth our home feels from all of us cuddling under a blanket together, watching a movie and just enjoying these winter months spending good quality time together. Or sitting by the fireplace and feeling the warmth spread through the room. Something about winter just makes me think of more family time. (yes it is because of the holidays mostly but in general we just hang out more) It is too cold to go outside so we just spend all our time inside, together.

My trials: Yes I am crazy but I often find myself thinking about the hard things in life that I have faced. Going through them has sucked, sucked, sucked but on the flip side of the trial I know I have learned something. Throughout our marriage our trial has mostly been about having children. Since it took us 8 years, 3 fertility doctors, 54 shots in my belly and 2 IUI's to get Mason I would say that is a trial. We went through a lot as a couple through those 8 years. A lot of heartache, yelling, and just wanting to give up, but I knew we had to keep trying. Since having Mason, our trial, regarding this topic of having children, has been sustaining the pregnancies. We had 2 confirmed miscarriages, (I think 3 just never confirmed I was pregnant July of 2012. Didn't think it could happen.) Then with this one, I didn't want to believe it was true. The last miscarriage really put me through the ringer! It was hard. I lost my faith in God for a few hours. I was lost and angry. But I now believe that it was my 2x4 to the head to get me moving and stop moping. Cause after that miscarriage, I tried to stop feeling sorry for myself and started to exercise again. And look at me now, running, while 16 weeks pregnant, with our little miracle. (and yesterdays run was overall a faster pace in general than I have done in awhile. So getting better WHILE pregnant! WAHOO!!!) I feel very blessed for our little miracle and the trial I had to go through to get it.

Please don't think we don't have any other trials in our life right now, OH BOY DO WE EVER! But I know we have them for a reason. They will make us stronger, even when we feel like a weakling while going through them. But look back when you have crest over the hill of your trial and see what you learned, and went through and you will know, this is why I had it. You will learn a lot about yourself and what you need to do. It is pretty amazing actually. If you haven't read this poem Footprints in the Sand by Mary Stevenson, check it out! One of my favs to read about going through trials. Again, sucks while going through a trial, believe me, but when you can see the flip side it is pretty amazing knowing that we are not the one in control. Big guy up top is!

QOTD: What are you thankful for the most this month?

Tuesday, November 26, 2013

Travel and Weather

Hmmmm. It is looking like it is going to be some bad weather today and Wednesday on the busiest travel days no less. We are supposed to be getting some snow by now, hasn't happened yet. But good news for the kids in my city, school has been canceled for today and if it is like this again tomorrow it could very well be canceled tomorrow too, meaning an extra long Thanksgiving break. Here is hoping that we can travel safely when we are leaving! I have some friends leaving town today during the main part of the show/ice storm. So to all who are traveling over the next few days stay safe and Happy Thanksgiving.

Just an FYI, I have some scheduled posts during the break, but they are small and short messages as I won't have my computer with me when we travel. But follow me on my Facebook, Instagram, or twitter for my latest updates. I will have the race recap and holiday recap when I get back! HAPPY THANKSGIVING! See you on the flip side of turkey day!

Monday, November 25, 2013

Good Eats- Spinach Salad


I know, I know what you are thinking. Spinach salad, blah or I already have a ton of those how is yours any different or special. Here is this AMAZING recipe! It is also REALLY GOOD! The kicker for this salad is the HOMEMADE DRESSING that is TO DIE FOR! Seriously! In my house, it is not a holiday without this salad. So I thought I would bring this out to you before the big day so just in case you want to try out this AMAZINGLY Yummy salad you can!

It is easy. Yummy and everyone will like it, unless they really don't like to eat salads in the first place. Like my husband. It's a lost cause.

Spinach Leaf Salad with Homemade Poppy Seed Dressing

Salad:
~2 bunches fresh spinach leaves, stemmed and washed (pat dry with paper towels.) OR 2 bags of baby spinach leaves

~1/4 lb fresh mushrooms, sliced

~1/2 lb bacon (8 slices), cooked and crumbled

~1/4 lb swiss cheese, grated

~1/4 red onion, thin half moons

~6 boiled eggs, sliced

~croutons

Dressing: Combine in a Blender
~1 cup salad oil

~1/3 cup cider vinegar

~3/4 cup brown sugar

~1 tablespoon dry mustard

~1/2 teaspoon salt

~1 tablespoon red onion (from the salad)

~1 tablespoon poppy seeds

Assemble salad in a large bowel. Combine dressing ingredients in the blender and blend together. (If you pre make the dressing store it in the fridge and blend it together just before serving because the oil will separate.) Just before serving, pour dressing over salad and stir well. Top with croutons. 

There you have it. Super simple and super yummy! Here are some changes that I have made over the years. I buy the bags of spinach, the pre-sliced mushrooms, pre-grated cheese, use the egg slicer thing to slice the eggs and I don't use bacon or croutons in it. Super no-fuss. I also tend to use a smidge more apple cider vinegar and a little extra brown sugar. I like it sweet but tangy! Play around with it and make it your own. Enjoy these good eats. This salad is great anytime but it has become a holiday tradition in my family! Maybe it will be for yours too!

QOTD: Do you think you will try this for one of your Thanksgiving sides? LET ME KNOW IF YOU DO AND WHAT YOU THINK!

Saturday, November 23, 2013

Can't Do Them All

Today I couldn't run with my training program. I actually had rehearsal for a gig at a church with a performance tomorrow! So how did I get my long run in this week??? Yesterday! I did my 4 miles yesterday. I have my 8k next week with the hubs and know that I can do 5 miles. And next week would have been 5 miles anyhow so I am feeling great for the race. I did do more walking than running yesterday as I realized how much I love to run outside. I find it easier to run outside. Our bodies were meant to be outside. We love the fresh air, we need the vitamin D. Also, I guess focusing on getting to the top of the hill then when at the top I get to just go and let the hill take me down seems to make it more fun and interesting.

Running the treadmill, or the hamster track at the gym can get boring. Even if I am watching the food channel salivating over all the yummy looking foods, especially all the Thanksgiving specials they have on there right now. So how can we make treadmill work more fun? Make it a game!

1. Intervals of running and running faster. Push yourself. If you are comfortable running at a 5.0 on the treadmill for 1-2 minutes try running at a 5.3 or 5.5. Then go back to the 5.0. I have been doing this, for me though I jog at a 4. When running faster speeds I go up to a 4.5. I have noticed that my new comfortable speed outside is now 13:30ish which is about 4.5 on the treadmill. Pretty neat.

2. Add hills. Add the incline on the treadmill. Be careful though that you don't add too much so you don't injure your self. Make them short splits too. Just do a few to work your quads a bit. That's all you really need.

3. Good music, or a movie if you have an iPad in front of you. If you have a movie or show to watch you are more than likely not watching the time on the treadmill. You loose track of time and realize that your interval run of 2 minutes was over with 2 minutes ago and you are still going strong! (That has happened to me a few times, pretty neat.) We become dependent on the clock and distance. Try covering it up or put on a good show.

4. Always do try to fit in an outside run at least 1 time a week. Outside running is different than treadmill running. Treadmill, you are being pushed by the treads. Outside you have to do the pushing. A few years ago I was purely a treadmill runner. Could not run outside for the life of me. I just did treadmill and was ok with that. Now I am the other way around. I love running outside!

Just have fun is really what it is all about. Running in a gym is convenient because, it is climate controlled. No bad weather. Great for super hot or super cold times of the year. No dogs. No ice. No bugs in the teeth. But make it fun. Enjoy it and do what you have to to stay in shape!

QOTD: What do you do to pass the time on the treadmill?

Disclaimer: I am not a professional trainer. The opinions listed here are of my own through my own personal training exercises. Find what works for you. If you have any questions on exact training or running programs consult a personal trainer at your local gym or a running trainer through a local track club. 

Friday, November 22, 2013

So Needed This

Oh my goodness! This has been my calming grace lately. Eden's Garden Relaxation. It has lavender, marjoram, patchouli, mandarin, geranium and chamomile. It has helped me sleep better. Feel more rested in the day and just plain feel good. I love the power of essential oils sometimes. They are just what the body needs. I went searching for this in the house because I felt stressed yesterday and man it just helped me, ahhhhh, take a nice deep breath. I put it on, just the tip of the bottle to the hollow part of my collar bone that way I can smell it easily, just before yoga today to help me forget about the life issues we are dealing with right now, and I just let the stress melt off of me.

I might smell like an old woman but on the inside I feel amazing!

QOTD: Have you tried essential oils? What are your favorite combos?

Disclaimer: I am not a medical professional. The use of these items are from my own research and are of my own opinion. If you have any questions about the use of essential oils contact your medical professional or an essential oils expert. 

Thursday, November 21, 2013

Thursday Turkey Day - 1 Week Away!

~Mason and his cousins will be making these Turkey Cupcakes next week when we go to visit. Fun activity for children to do while waiting for food to cook!~

Next week is Thanksgiving day! YEA! I love this holiday because it is a day for me and my family. I remember going to Grandmas house for Thanksgiving when I was a little girl. All my cousins would be there. We would all sit at the table in the kitchen, wishing for the day that we could sit at the grown-up table in the dining room. (I actually inherited said grown up table and it is in my dining room.)

Grandma made her famous rolls that would be so yummy and Uncle John brought his homemade jelly. Mom made her yams and later added the spinach leaf salad to the mix. (MY FAV! And sharing the recipe next week!) I remembered watching Grandma getting the turkey and taking the innards out (EWWW!) and do all the fixing to that bird.

Sadly it seems that Thanksgiving is just another day sometimes. Or Black Friday is "the real holiday." This year so many stores are opening or staying open on Thanksgiving day. Where back in the old days, my days, everyone got the day off or most of the day off. The occasional grocery store was open for those who forgot something for their meal. Now stores are opening at 6pm and staying open over night and through the next day. If you want that deal be in the store at 6pm on THANKSGIVING!

Next week don't forget to just take a moment and really say thanks to all you have! Enjoy your family, whether you are with your entire extended family, traveling from one family to the next and having multiple Thanksgiving dinners in 1 day, we have done that, it is a very filling day. Or if it is just you and your sweet. Enjoy the day. Make a new tradition. Do something new this year and try to stick to it next year! Mine is running in my first turkey trot. With my hubby. I am super excited to do this and cross the finish line holding hands! It is a healthy activity and burns some calories that I am sure I will be eating later!

1 more week. Make it a special day.

QOTD: What do you plan on doing with your family on Thanksgiving?

Wednesday, November 20, 2013

How Wonderful Life Is-vol. 3

Wednesday wonderful life day again! So here it is!

This pregnancy. I am so delightfully happy that we are pregnant and were able to stay pregnant. After 8 years trying for our first, and that was with the help of fertility we thought that we would always have to go through fertility to get pregnant. We had heard the stories of people getting pregnant, who had my condition of PCOS, on their own after a first successful pregnancy. "It jump started their system" is what were were told. And we were told that it could happen to us but we never thought that it would. Well, it did. It is kind of a weird feeling knowing that I am "fixed." 3 pregnancies in 1 year is pretty good. I am just glad that the third time was the charm because honestly, I didn't know if I could go through what I went through last May. I mean if I had to I could, because what was I really going to do to save a pregnancy, but I certainly didn't want to.

It took me a while to accept the fact that I was pregnant and to celebrate it, just in case. But today I am 15 weeks and things seem to be going well. I am not sick. I have my appetite back (not such a good thing because I feel more hungry now, ALL THE TIME!) And I am still able to run pain free. (I pray that I didn't just jinx it!) I am so thankful for this pregnancy. And for the blessing of adding another little one to our family in oh about 6 months now!

My parents. My parents are awesome. I know I just said they are awesome. I am not a teen anymore so I can say that and mean it! I call them everyday or almost everyday just to talk to them. Or if I haven't called, they call me. We check up on each other. I have a relationship with them that I love. We are friends. I love having them visit and visiting them. It is really hard because they are so very far away from us, that we only get to see them a couple of times a year, but I am thankful that we DO get the couple of times a year! 
~Mason (5 months) and GMA~
~Mason (2 years) and GMA~ 


Mom is coming out next May before the baby arrives to spend some time here with Mason and will help out with him while I am in the hospital. That means so much to me. When I had Mason she stayed an extra 2 weeks to help me out because I didn't have anyone else. And that was seriously the best thing I have ever experienced. She helped me with her experience with a crying baby (since I did that a ton when I was a newborn) but she also let me figure out a lot of things on my own too. I was so sad when she left because we bonded in a different way than we had before.  It was quite amazing and I am so thankful for that.
~This is how Mason would look as a newborn screaming his head off. Pretty scary for a FTM who didn't know what the heck to do!~
~Mason (3 days) and GPA~


My daddy. Yes I am such a daddy's girl. He is awesome! He is a big bear. That's how I described him to all my boyfriends who were going to come calling at my home. He might be a tall guy but he is cuddly and nice! I call him and tell him about all my rehearsals and performances. He is so glad that I am keeping up my horn playing! I wish they were here to do their silly wave at me from the audience. It is really hard not having anyone for me in the audience but I know that if they could be here they would. I love the way Mason laughs at my dad over Facetime because my dad does a silly face or something and Mace gets this little grin of, yeah I think I like you. I love how involved they are in my life and I wouldn't change a thing. 
~Mason (2 years) showing off his jammies that GMA and GPA got him in Alaska~


There you have it. My 2 things this week! More to come for the last and final installment next week!

QOTD: How wonderful has your life been this past week?

Tuesday, November 19, 2013

Girly Girl!

I am, like totally, becoming a GIRLY GIRL! I am so excited and thrilled for my new find that I found the other night. I have known for awhile now what I and my teammate were going to wear for costumes for the Disney Princess Half Marathon. We are named team Brave Belles. Me as Merida (from Brave) and her as Belle. I also knew that I wanted to venture out wearing a tutu. I read that it can give you an extra little berth when running Disney races as the tutu's are so puffy and the races are so packed. I talked K into wearing a tutu, and actually just ordered hers the other day. Well, due to my pregnancy I have to wait to get mine until my belly is bigger and such.

But to top it off, it looks like I am starting the tutu thing a little early. When finding my friend's K tutu and my future tutu I found this amazing beauty!
I will be sporting it at my upcoming turkey trot on Thanksgiving morning!
 ~LOVE THE BACK PLUMAGE!~
 ~Side view~
It is the TURKEY TUTU! I love the back of it. SO CUTE! And for a top my shirt will say, "huffing for some stuffin'" I am really excited. I am so excited for my race and to run in my TUTU! Seriously, though, these are the things that get me excited now, running a race and what am I going to wear in it! So many tutu's to choose from now! 

Check out Angelina's website at Etsy: https://www.etsy.com/shop/RaceJunkie. She is super nice and so fun to talk to. (I sent her a couple of messages asking how do I measure my pregnant belly, do I have to pin the tutu to me to stay up, and such.) She had prompt response and was so nice and is very willing to work with you for you!

QOTD: Have you or would you ever run a race in a TUTU? And what was the theme if you did?

Monday, November 18, 2013

Good Eats- Vegan Baked Ziti


First off, we are not vegans, or vegetarians. We are carnivores. We like our meat in this house, but every now and then I will throw in a meatless meal. Not always a hit but this one was not a miss.

Don't let the name fool you. Vegan. Yes, Vegan. Vegan does not mean that there is no flavor and that you won't like it. Trust me! YOU WILL LIKE THIS! Because of this recipe I have found a new herb that I like to throw in various dishes now because of the black licorice taste and deep flavor it gives. Who knows what herb I am talking about???

Fennel seed! It is actually a really cool herb to use. So this recipe I found almost 2 years ago. (Still trying to find the website where I originally found it. When I find it, it will go here. Sorry!) Try this recipe out. Super healthy and super filling!

Vegan Baked Ziti w/Roasted Vegetables

  • 1 lb. eggplant, peeled or not, cut into 1" cubes
  • 1 large red onion, cut into 1" cubes
  • 2 yellow peppers, large pieces
  • 1 Tablespoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon sea salt
  • 16 oz. ziti pasta, cooked
  • 1 bunch fresh spinach, chopped ~( I used a small spinach container)~
  • 1 cup non-dairy cheese, Mozzarella, grated (I like Follow Your Heart) (parm cheese works too)
FOR THE SAUCE:
  • 1 teaspoon extra-virgin olive oil
  • 1 cup onions, fine chopped
  • 2 teaspoons garlic, minced
  • 1/4 teaspoon crushed red pepper
  • 1/4 teaspoon fennel seed
  • 2 pounds tomatoes, crushed
  • Sea salt and freshly ground pepper, to taste
  • 1/4 teaspoon organic sugar
  • 1 pinch thyme
  • 2 Tablespoon fresh parsley
1. Heat oven to 450F. Toss eggplant, red onion, peppers, oil and salt in small baking dish. Roast 30 minutes, stirring once or twice until vegetables begin to brown.

2. TO MAKE SAUCE: Heat oil in saucepan. Add onions and cook covered over med-low heat 10 minutes. Stir in garlic, red pepper and fennel seed; cook 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, salt, pepper, sugar and thyme. Bring to boil, reduce heat and simmer 15 minutes. Stir in parsley. (Makes 3 cups.)

3. Reduce oven heat to 400F. Toss ziti pasta with vegetables, sauce, spinach and cheese in bowl. Spread in shallow 3-quartbaking dish. Bake 20 minutes or until bubbly.

Serves 6. (we actually got closer to 9 servings because it was so filling)
Per Serving: 427 Calories; 2g Fat (5.1% calories from fat); 23g Protein; 79g Carbohydrate; 7g Dietary Fiber; 0mg Cholesterol; 429mg Sodium.


Saturday, November 16, 2013

SAHM Weekly Exercise Tips- Cleaning

Alrighty moms! How many of us clean our house? (you don't have to raise your hand if you don't want to.) Do you know how many calories you are burning while cleaning your house? It is quite amazing actually to see that yes cleaning does burn calories. I hate cleaning. I hate having a dirty house even more so my dislike for cleaning is overruled.

So I teach piano lessons out of my house 2 days a week which means that for those 2 days a week that 3/4 of my house actually have to be clean. The main living floor: foyer, 1/2 bath, kitchen and living room where I teach and the basement need to be cleaned (that is where all the family members hang out while I teach since there are lots of toys for siblings to play with down there). I don't do a deep clean every week but I vacuum every week sometimes more than just 1 time depending on how messy Mason has been that day.

I just looked it up here a that if you weigh 165 lbs and vacuum for 60 min you have burned just shy of 200 calories. I know that doesn't seem like a lot compared to the gym and all but that is just vacuuming. Combine that with doing an in home walking DVD for 3+ miles and you are doing 500 cals a day alone in just a short amount of time. Need a little extra boost in cal burn. Run your stairs a few times too, try carrying your kid up the stairs a few times, or race them up it (as long as it is safe for you child). That will get you burning. These are all things we can do at home. Involve the kids. Make it fun. But don't stop moving!

QOTD: What other activities can you do with your kids to exercise?

Friday, November 15, 2013

Breaking The Stereotype

(source: Active.com)

One thing I have noticed over the last few weeks and this week in particular, now that I am showing, is everyone is SHOCKED that I am still running while pregnant. At the training program last Saturday people were so amazed that I could still run while pregnant. People at the gym are the same way. They all ask, "Is your doctor ok with this?" "How are you feeling?" "How long have you been running for?" And such. For so many years it was so taboo to do exercise without just sitting in a chair but to get out and actually run was FORBIDDEN!

Even recently doctors have changed their tune with what to watch for while pregnant and exercising. It used to be don't let your heart rate get above 140 bpm. But that is all done with now. Doctors say that if you have previously been running/exercising you may continue to do so. Their main concern now is with overheating and dehydration. Especially while running. And the other day I read this article here about the benefits of exercising while pregnant. And here is another great article about running while pregnant.

I think it is just so funny when I am running or exercising now to just get these looks of shock. Just you wait peeps until I am HUGE and still running. The 1/2 marathon will be an interesting sight to behold because I will have a very "out there" belly!

Rule of thumb about exercising while pregnant. TALK TO YOUR OB/GYN! Seriously. Ask them what they think. And listen to your body. You will know if something doesn't feel right. If it doesn't stop, slow down and/or try again later. 1st trimester is hard to exercise in because you are sick, sick, sick. 3rd trimester is hard to exercise in because you are huge, and getting huge-r (still walk or run though it is great for you)! So use the 2nd trimester to get back into it and just walk if you have to. But LISTEN to you body!

QOTD: What is your favorite exercise to do while pregnant?

Disclaimer: I AM NOT A MEDICAL PROFESSIONAL! I have talked with my own doctor about what he wants me to do and continue with. These opinions are purely mine and the sites that I listed. Talk with your doctor or medical professional for help and advice on medical questions.

Thursday, November 14, 2013

My Second 5k- Forest Lakes July 4th 5k

Here is another throw back Thursday. I never got a chance to recap my second 5k race.

July 4- 2013.
(Pre-Race. Not sweating or red)


OH MAN IT was hot and humid. Just heavy feeling. I was sweating before we left the gate! I had a hard time sleeping the night before again due to fears of getting lost and being the last one. When we arrived we were like the first ones there. (Great parking spot because of it but a lot of waiting around.) I saw a ton of people running and walking around. I didn't know what the heck to do. I had been in my training program for a couple of week now. Hadn't quite run 3 miles yet but I could do it. I was considering this as my long run for the week.

My friend and her husband were running in the race too, but they are speed demons and I didn't expect to run with them. My friend's hubby went out and ran 1/2 the 5k for a warm-up before the race began. My jaw hit the ground when L told me that because I thought that was crazy. But he loves to run! I had some other friends running in the race too from my training program. Janet, who is now a good friend of mine was there but she is a speed diva! (she ran with me on my 10k if you remember.)

It was time to get lined up. I milled around the back because I knew I would be in the back. Started talking to those around me. One nice lady said that she was recovering from an injury and would run with me since I was a slow runner. Thus began another great friendship. This would be Jen, who also ran with me on the 10k. She did the whole race with me. Gave me tips and pointers to do better. Encouraged me, pushed me and helped me come in at the time I wanted.

The course was beautiful. It is in this beautiful neighborhood. The hood that we wanted to live in when we first arrived in VA but couldn't afford the prices of the homes. The course took us on a footpath near one of the many lakes and rivers. It was covered in silt and shaded and very slippery. (there was a fall at the beginning of the race right next to me. and I hoped there wasn't another later.) Not too many hills to worry about except for coming out of the footpath.

My favorite part of the race is the end though. Because you know you are close to the end and you can push yourself just a little harder. I also feel like the horse going back to the barn. I feel that pull of, I am almost done, almost done. I can sit down and rest if I just get there a little faster. Jen pushed me up till the end having me run a longer split at the end to cross the finish line. I was pouring sweat, tired and I had done it. Came in the at the time I wanted to. Knocked 10 minutes off my original time from the month before! I was faster. Stronger. And crying. Yes, I cry at the finish line because I am doing something I didn't think I could do and wasn't strong enough or courageous enough to try. But I am now!

~My new running friends!~

Wednesday, November 13, 2013

How Wonderful Life is vol. 2

I really am enjoying this. Week 2 of writing what I am thankful for! It really is fun and therapeutic. Here it goes:
My health- I am so thankful for my health. That I am strong enough mentally, emotionally, and physically to be able to push myself harder than I have before and accomplish something that I once thought was impossible! I am not the typical looking runner. But is there really a "typical body type" that is only able to run? My body is doing it. I am doing it. It is hard, but man it feels so wonderful to cross that finish line and look back at what I have done and say, "I DID IT!" But seriously when I heard people say, "If I can do this, anyone can." I always thought, yeah right. BUT IT IS TRUE! Because I am the one that would rather sit on my couch watching TV and relaxing and not doing much. But where is that going to get me in life. We have to keep pushing ourselves and DO IT! YOU CAN DO IT!
My Studio- I love teaching! I LOVE IT! I knew in 8th grade that I wanted to teach. I thought that I wanted to teach JR. High Band. YEAH RIGHT! In college when I helped teach at a local high school, I realized that it was not the right type of job teaching multiple kids who really didn't want to be there. I was called more names and bad words than I knew existed at the time. I didn't have that "thick skin." I realized that I worked best one on one with kids. Not huge groups. So I decided that I would only teach a "studio" when I was in a place long enough to make a difference. That started in 2007. I began teaching. It was amazing. I love seeing the wheels turn in my student's head and then they finally get it! I have taught hundreds of students now and I LOVE IT EVERYDAY! Now that we moved to a new city, and having Mason, I knew I would have a smaller studio. I only teach a couple of days a week and it is divine to be a mommy and still be able to teach amazing kids piano!

(IF YOU ARE IN THE C-VILLE AREA AND LOOKING FOR A PIANO TEACHER LET ME KNOW! ACCEPTING NEW STUDENTS TO BEGIN JANUARY 2014! Click here to go to my studio web page! )

I had to do a little plug for the upcoming openings! I hope all of you have a wonderfully fantastic day. Keep on Moving!

QOTD: What are you thankful for today?

Tuesday, November 12, 2013

One More Step!

~I will be adding this to my running wardrobe soon! For Two fitness~

I'm getting stronger everyday that I run or even walk, walk quickly that is! Exercise while pregnant is hard business! It takes extra dedication to go to the gym and get your butt moving. Well that is how I feel because my butt doesn't want to get moving most days. It would be so much easier to just stay at home and rest, and let my body make a baby and just not push it to work any harder. But you know what the amazing thing about our bodies are. THEY CAN DO IT! Women used to work out in the fields up until they had the baby, and would be out working again in a few days. That happens still now! Women work up until they have the baby and are back at work in a week because they need to support their family. Those women are strong, and powerful and amazing! I couldn't do it. HONESTLY! Well, I guess if I had to I would do it but I sure wouldn't want to. I am so thankful to my husband in supporting me in our decision to be a stay at home mom, with an at home teaching part time job. I'm am doing the 2 things I love!

The cool thing I keep thinking about though when I am exercising now is, how much more easy this will be when I am not pregnant. How much more I will be able to push myself and yes, I might be able to run without stopping. This is a for seeable goal of mine now because I am pushing myself during the hardest time in my life and it will just be easier after this! (at least that is what I am thinking.)

So here is to one more step and getting stronger. Feeling empowered! And making great choices for me and my family in choosing to exercise!

QOTD: What did you do today to be one step stronger?

Monday, November 11, 2013

Veteran's Day

Today is my wonderful husband's day. He is a vet, well he is still in the military but this has always been his special day to spend with the family. This is the first year of teaching that I haven't taken the day off to spend with him. But that doesn't mean we can't spend the morning and most of the afternoon together.
~Matt leaving for his Iraq deployment when Mason was 3 days old.~
There was actually a time where I thought about joining the military. I thought about joining one of the army bands. (A good friend of mine from college is actually doing that now, way to go Kristen S.!) But my fear about joining the military was, I could NEVER run the 2 miles PT test. I could do the minimum number of pushups and the sit-ups but apparently I could never learn to do the run. I made excuses and didn't even really try. (In college Matt and I were in the ROTC PT class in the morning and I had a hard time running with the groups, we were living in Flagstaff, AZ at the time at 7,000 ft elevation, of course learning to run at that altitude would be hard!) So the idea just fizzled out. (at that same time I saw my first advertisement in a magazine for the WDW Marathon and the beautiful medal.) I wanted to run but I was too scared to really try.

Well now 7 years later, no military but I AM RUNNING! I am a runner. I will be running in my first Disney race next year with my husband and kid cheering me on!
~Matt having a little fun at training many, many years ago when he was a Private~
I am so proud of my husband and for his amazing choice and decision to join the military and remain in the military for nearly 13 years now. He has accomplished so much, gained great respect from his fellow soldiers and protects and provides for our family!

Matt's opinion of Veteran's Day:
My wife has dealt with the frustrations and pain that being an army wife can bring. From multiple deployments to raising our first son without me. Being an army wife is not easy. I thank all the Army Wives (spouses) out there for their continued support! I'm grateful to have a companion that actually stayed and supports me in my choice to serve our country.

I'm grateful that we have a day to remember all the people who have sacrificed for this country. I'm lucky to have a Grandfather and Dad who are vets. One who served in WWII and the other in Vietnam. I wonder if my children will follow in my footsteps and join the military one day.

Becky here:
Thank you to all the veteran's and spouses for all you have done and sacrificed! So proud to be part of such a strong community of military families in my town! Post your comments below to show your support to the military!

QOTD: Are you doing anything special to celebrate the day?

Saturday, November 9, 2013

Baby It's Cold Outside!

(Disney and New Balance will be announcing new running shoes next year. This weekend at the Wine & Dine race weekend is the last chance to snatch up these beauties!)

Ooooo! BURRRR! It was cold, cold, cold this morning! Morning run was in the upper 30's when we finally set out. That kind of cold just burns your lungs awake!

This morning was the 3rd week of the training program, 1st week for me though. There was a ton of confusion though with which training group to join and such. The program has us broken down into 6 different groups. I was put in the 2nd group. (I was hoping for the 3rd but I run/walk and don't run straight.) I do have to meet a certain mileage by January and the 3rd group is where I need to be.

I met my running captains for my group and one of them happens to be a Labor and Delivery nurse at my hospital. We had a bit of a talk during the run. She is going to tell my doc that she will watch over me and keep me safe and such. She gave me pointers on what to "listen" for with my body if I pushing too hard and when to back off. She did say that it is ok the whole time to just do run/walk intervals because my focus right now is for health for me and my baby and keeping up good exercise habits, not breaking personal records. She was very helpful, and I will probably do the mileage for group 3 next week because the 2 miles today just wasn't enough. I felt ready to go and it was time to stop. 3 miles is my base amount during the week. Anyhew. I will figure it out.

QOTD: How did you transition to run/walk to run all the time?

Friday, November 8, 2013

Dinner vs Cookie?!?

Oh what a dilemma we have in our house tonight! I made 14.5 dozen cookies today for a church activity tomorrow. 14.5 COOKIES! That is a ton. Needless to say we are on a bit of a cookie high right now!

Mason now knows how to move a chair to an area to climb up onto it and grab the something he wants. (Smart little cookie). Well, tonight was no different. He wanted a cookie. He only had 2 earlier today. (They are small cookies, and he doesn't eat a lot of sweets because I don't want him to be addicted to sweets like I am.) Anyhew. Dad ate a cookie while I was heating up left overs and Mason wanted one too. So I gave one to him, but I said he had to eat dinner. When dinner was ready to eat we took away said cookie, tears did ensue, and I told Mason, you may have your cookie back after dinner but you need to eat at least 5 bites. After oh, about 10 minutes of fighting, tears, and crying we walked away. While I started to write this he went back to the table all on his own and took his first bite. Then another, and another. He ended up eating 6 bites. Then he was done. I gave him his cookie and I asked, "What do you say?" He grabbed my head and gave me a long smooch right on the mouth! I would say that that was a thank you if I ever did get one!

So Mommy won the war tonight. Dad was super impressed. We worked on what is important, that dinner comes first over cookies, and worked on our counting! (I even did silly little songs to show what number we were at. He loved it, and it worked)

QOTD: How do you enforce healthy eating habits for your kids when there are little temptations in the house?

Wednesday, November 6, 2013

How Wonderful Life Is

So in November the popular thing on Facebook to do is post everyday what you are thankful for. As I think this is a great idea, I just don't keep up with it in the month. So here are a couple of things in which I am thankful for today! I will do some more next week. How about that just a couple every week! That works for me!
1. My hubby. I love my husband so much! He is an amazing man. He goes to work super early in the morning just so he can be back earlier in the day to spend more time with Mason and me. He has been deployed 4 times overseas and has sacrificed a lot of time with me and Mason to help take care of us, and to serve our Country with honor! He treats me like a princess when half the time I don't deserve it. I am so glad that we had the 9 years together to have fun and play and now we have started our "next phase of marriage". Having kids! We make sacrifices for each other and have grown stronger everyday! So glad to have him in my life! Best choice I ever made, marrying my hubby!

2. Mason. It might have taken forever to get him, but there is a reason for all things. I got to spend wonderful years with Matt, now I get to spend some wonderful years with my children and Matt. It is just a different stage of life. You make me frustrated, work on my patience,  confused, worried, and scared all in one day, but you make me love you, smile, laugh, play, and just show me how much love you have for me all in the same day. Parenting is hard. It is a trial. but it is oh, so worth it. Just to hear you laugh because I made you. Or when you had your first smile, because you thought I was being silly. When you come running up to me pointing to your hand or foot for me to kiss it better and after 1 kiss it is magically healed. I love being a mom! I love it. I love being Mason's mom and look forward to baby #2 joining our family.

Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Getting Back To It

So I really have taken a couple of weeks off from serious training. I wanted to rest. I hadn't really taken a "rest" since before I started the W4MTP in June. I needed one.

Well, rest time is over! This week I am back into it, seeing in how I have my first long run scheduled this Saturday with the 10 miler training program, I really ought to run prior to that. So Today and Friday are my short run days. Yesterday I did a 2.5 miles walk and cleaned, cleaned, cleaned. Wednesday is my swimming class and Thursday is my yoga class. And Saturday, long run. No idea how many miles but thinking at least 4 miles, maybe. We will see what group I get placed into.

Also, we did see our little baby yesterday! Healthy and happy and squirming around all over the place! Every time the Doc tried to get a good profile pix it would move around. But the one below is pretty good! This one is going to be a super active little baby. It will be interesting to see if it is more active than Mace was when I exercise. That was when Mace would go crazy.

Monday, November 4, 2013

SAHM In Home Weekly Tip- Legs

Alrighty moms! Here is a healthy tip to keep in peak condition! While in yoga on Thursday, my instructor talked about the one area that has a hard time getting back into shape after baby. What is that area? The inner thighs! OK I know that there are other areas that have a hard time getting back in shape after baby but really do we really work our inner thighs?

I am not the kind of person to just jump out of bed and start doing squats and lunges but sadly those are the exercises that our inner thigh muscles need to get back to it.

Realsimple.com has 5 easy tips on how to strengthen your inner thighs, actually it will work your whole leg too but main focus is for inner thigh. They are easy and short. I tried them out a few times since Thursday and my legs already feel stronger. I feel ready for my short run tomorrow! Yes they are a little sore, but they feel strong. Give them a try!

On another note! I get to see the baby today. We are doing a 12 week screening today. I'm adopted and we don't know my medical history so this gives us a peek inside to make sure everything is developing great! I am sure it is but I like to know, know. Ya know!?!

QOTD: Would you like to participate in a November challenge with me??? Like the squat challenge?

(source for photo)

Saturday, November 2, 2013

Halloween 2013

I know we are in November already but I wanted to show everyone our Halloween getup this year. AND this year is THE first year that I actually convinced my husband to "dress up." He hates to dress up but I guess the idea of just a hat was fine by him. I have got my foot in the door now so we shall see what I can talk him into for next year! Buwahahahhaha!!!
Oh, and apparently I look good in a super bright blue wig as my friends on FB keep telling me. What do you think? Should I go blue more often???
~Here is what my shirt looked like~

QOTD: What do you do with your kids Halloween candy? Do you eat it, throw it out, save it for bribing? I need ideas!

Friday, November 1, 2013

My Future Bling!

Run Disney Facebook just announced/showed the pictures of the new medals for the Princess Half Marathon, Enchanted 10k and the glass slipper challenge medal. Also the new Tink medals for the Disneyland race in Jan.

I am so excited to see that beautiful piece of hardware that in a few months will be swinging from my neck. Ok I know this is silly but I first got interested in running a Disney race because it was, well, Disney but I saw the Disney World Marathon Medal with Mickey on it and I WANT IT! Someday I will get that medal. But for now, I am a princess in training to get my royal princess medal!
~Here are the 3 medal you can get in the 2 days of races. Not doing the Glass slipper challenge this year. Kind of glad seeing how I will be near 30 weeks pregnant!~
Pick up training with a vengeance next week! I have been walking more but next week back to jogging, slowly. Then a week from tomorrow I will finally be able to begin the 10 miler training program. (Hubby had military duty last weekend and this weekend)

Oh, and I did find a race in NC for Thanksgiving day. They are offering an 8k and a 5k. I think I am going to do the 8k. Just trying to talk the hubby into doing it with me since he can speed walk as fast as I jog.

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