Thursday, November 25, 2010

Are you this hard core?

I've never considered myself a hard core runner. In fact I often berate and belittle myself for taking it a little lightly. I run because I enjoy it. I run because it's fun. I run so I can eat whatever I want. I'm not a true racer. Just a recreational runner. But this morning's Turkey Trot made me feel just a little bit hard core. When I lined up at the start line in a temperature of -2 F (and a wind chill of -15) I wondered if I was just a little out of my mind. To be fair, the turkey was probably the warmest guy out there.

Fortunately I wasn't the only insane person out there. There were a couple hundred others out there. All of us dressed in so many layers it was like a running herd of bloated sasquatches. (Sasquatches? Sasquatch?)

Actually it was the volunteers I felt the most sorry for. Especially the 80 missionaries who were out there, giving up part of their holiday to stand in the frigid weather and direct the race. As for me I had on two pair of socks, two pair of running tights, sweatpants, a long sleeve shirt, a technical tee, a sweat shirt, a coat, two pair of gloves, a headband and a hat. Frankly I got so hot around mile two the coat ended up tied around my waist.

But the race was slow going. First of all we were running on a lot of ice and packed snow. It was treacherous in quite a few places, but we managed even though we had to slow down to a walk at several spots. My lungs were burning. I'm not going to lie, it was one of the hardest races I'd done. I kept having to remind myself that I've run a marathon, so I could easily manage this short distance. But it was tough. There were times when the only reason I kept running was the knowledge that if I stopped I'd freeze to death. The highlight of the run came at a corner around the 2.5 mile mark when one happy elder (bouncing around to try and keep himself warm) shouted, "Happy Thanksgiving Y'all! Good Work" I spun around and asked him what part of Texas he was from, "How did you know I was from Texas?" "Honey it takes a Texan to know one." Turns out he was from McAllen which is basically Mexico. He admitted this was the first time he'd ever seen snow. Anyway that little exchange gave me the boost I needed to finish the loop strong. Still when I reached the moment of truth, I decided I'd been as hard core as I needed to be for one Thanksgiving morning. Instead of taking the turn around and going back for another lap (and an additional 3 miles, as I'd been originally slated to do,) I took the fork to the left and headed for the finish.

I tried not to beat myself up for doing only a 5K, instead of 10. But my lungs were on fire, my body was heavy and my eyes were burning and watering from the wind. I did what I always do at the end of the race and kicked it into high gear in the home stretch. I started to feel great when the 30 or so missionaries at the finish line started yelling and cheering. That is until I completely wiped out 10 feet from the finish line. It was humiliating and for the first time I was grateful that no one I knew was there to see it.

Here's me at the starting line. By the end of the race I had frost on my hat and gloves. I saw people with frost on their hair and eyebrows. But I'm glad I did it. In a small way, I feel like a hard core runner and a total rockstar for pushing myself to do this while everyone else was still in bed. And besides, when I was stuffing myself full of turkey and pie some 5 hours later, at least I felt like I had earned every bite.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Where to Begin...

It's been so very busy! What a whirlwind weekend! Seriously my head is still spinning! So on Friday we had a little birthday party for Gavin who turned 2 on Saturday. The boys had a good time eating cupcakes and Gideon was super excited to give Gavin his gift.

Speaking of my super sweet baby boy, he's entering this new cowboy phase where he wears daddy's hat, his boots and runs around yelling "YEEHAW!" Actually I think he's being Woody from Toy Story. What's really fun is when he's Woody and Buzz both. He'll wear his Halloween costume and then put on his boots and hat with it.

Travis came home Sunday afternoon. We had a birthday dinner with family that evening. It was fun.

Even Princess P seemed to enjoy everything. She sat comfortably in grandpa's arms and watched everything going down. She's so fun being so alert and awake lately!

A super yummy ice cream cake from Cold Stone! I know there aren't 39 candles on the cake, but don't worry, next year there will definitely be 40!

Daddy, of course, had help blowing out the candles and unwrapping some gifts.

So my mom made a comment the other day about Trav's favorite meal. I told her it was macaroni & cheese and hot dogs. So what did she give him for his birthday?

Monday Travis and I went on a date in the middle of the day. We went to a matinee of Harry Potter (which was incredible) and then had hot chocolate. After that, we had a family date with the judge. Parker got hungry waiting for our turn in the courtroom.

So Nana fixed her up with a little snack.

Parker was so cute during the proceedings. She just sat quietly on my lap and watched everything with a happy smile on her face. After it was all done we visited with our caseworker, Dale and case manager, David from LDS Family Services.

We somehow failed to get a photo with the judge or our attorney, but that's okay, we got a family photo in the courtroom where we became a family legally.

Anyway, last night less than an hour after we left the courtroom, Travis and I jumped in the car and headed toward Utah. He flew out at 6:00am this morning, so we drove through the storm and got a hotel room by the airport. (There was a bonus, though, we managed to get a room at an airport hotel which had a shuttle, so I didn't even have to get out of bed to take him to the airport at 5:00am.) However, I got a very worried phone call from my mother at 7:00am asking what time I was headed home. Apparently there was a huge blizzard hitting the area. I got up and out of there, but still drove right into the teeth of the thing. I hit it at Inkom, just south of Pocatello. The roads were bad, but the blowing snow made the visibility almost nothing. It was just white, white everywhere. It was a grueling drive home but I finally made it. But let me tell you, I was exhausted when I finally got here. I'm so happy to be home, by my fireplace with my babies right now.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

She Smiles!

Princess P has really been smiling and "talking" a lot lately. She's becoming more alert and beginning to react and really interact. But every time I grab the camera to capture one of her precious smiles I'm left with a face that's somewhere between confusion, surprise and "I have to poop."

Regardless of whatever this aversion to smiling for the camera may be, the fact is that she's wonderful! According to the Dr. she's growing beautifully. She now weighs 9 lbs. 14 oz & is 22 3/4 inches long. She still has a cough, but the Dr. explained that she's not actually sick. It's a combination of acid reflux (which all babies have and in Parker it's causing excess mucus production) and small airways which haven't grown fast enough to catch up to the rest of her development. So she has coughing fits sometimes. Fortunately it's not life threatening and she will begin to grow out of it within the next couple of months.
Aside from that, all else is going along perfectly. I spoke with the attorney yesterday who confirmed that everything is in order for Monday's hearing and there were no bumps in the road anywhere. I almost feel guilty at how easy both of our adoptions have really been. We have a wonderful drama-free birth mother who has made this process such a breeze for us! Plus our caseworkers and attorney have been fantastic at getting all of the red tape stuff done, so all we've had to do really is sit back and enjoy the ride. It's really been a dream! And I'm almost afraid I'll wake up someday and realize that it couldn't really have been this easy!

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Dear Daddy

A note to daddy about how we celebrated his birthday without him.

Daddy I woke up so happy and talkative this morning. I wanted to wish you happy birthday, but since I don't know any words yet, I wore this shirt which pretty well sums it up. (I had a diaper explosion all over it later in the day. But that's another story.)

Mommy bundled me up all nice and warm so we could go someplace special. Everything looked so yummy, but she didn't even let me have a taste!

I ate a cupcake for you, daddy. It was really yummy! (Especially the frosting!)

After the cupcake we went and played with Emily and Camden for a while. Then when we came home mommy watched basketball (she was happy cause her Tarheels won.) And then some guys came over with big hoses and cleaned the carpet. I got to help. I was very wet when they left.

We went some place with a lot of Christmas trees and way too many people. But everyone thought I was adorable!

Mom was being kind of mean and wouldn't let me crawl under the rope and play with the Christmas trees. I just wanted a cowboy hat and stick horse to take home! But I mostly hung out with Nana and grandma.

Mommy's tree looked very pretty and it already had been sold!

I got to meet Santa Claus for the first time. He was very, very interesting.

I liked Santa better than last year, but I wasn't too sure at first. Finally grandma made me smile.

And that's how we celebrated your birthday. Maybe next year you can be here with us!
Gideon and Parker

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

not going to believe who we ran into at the truck stop near work

Monday, November 15, 2010

Chubby Cheeks, Gid the Kid and Something I'm Not Talented Enough to Do!

Wow nearly two weeks since my last post! Where did the time go? Can you believe Princess P is already 8 weeks old? She's really starting to fill out, especially in her cute chubby cheeks. I'm excited for her two month check up this week to find out how much she's grown.

Gideon still adores her and actually since she's awake more and more these days has begun taking it upon himself to entertain her. It's very cute.

The other thing he's suddenly interested in is cowboys, horses & trailers. I think it must be the Woody influence from too much Toy Story but he always wants to wear a cowboy hat and go for horse rides. And he shouts a very cute "YeeHaw!" I'll have to try and get video of it.

Earlier this week I got a call from my dear friend Sara asking if I'd like to help her decorate a tree for the annual Festival of Trees. I've never done this before and I love all things Christmas so I didn't even have to think twice. Plus Sara is one of my favorite people in the world, so getting to hang out with her for a couple of hours without kids was a huge bonus.

So I already knew she was talented, but Sara just blew me away with what she was able to do. I just didn't get that kind of creativity. I can't look at all of the random parts and pieces she brought and visualize what the finished tree is supposed to look like. Still I was excited watching it come together. I was the official photographer and other than that I just did whatever I was told. When she said, "Put these red branches like so..." that's what I did and so forth. For the record, there is a photo of Sara and I standing by the finished product, but it was taken by her husband, Sam, so I don't have a copy of it yet.

I wasn't sure what she was doing with the star at first. But I'm glad I kept my mouth shut because eventually it looked great.

This is the almost finished product. I'm taking my mom and mother-in-law to the Festival on Thursday, so I'll try and get some more pictures of it when the display is all put together and everything. I think it turned out lovely.

I snapped a few pictures of other trees I thought were fun or interesting. I'll get more on Thursday when they're all done. The thing I love about this festival is that you see a little bit of everything. Victorian, Elegant, Funky, Patriotic, Classical, Children's, Characters, Whimsical, Homemade, and even one that was decorated with the cases of Christmas DVD's and bags of popcorn and candy. It's incredible.
This doesn't seem very Christmas-y to me, but I absolutely love it!

This green and white might just have been my very favorite. I don't know why. It wasn't the most elegant, or beautiful or striking. But something about the white tree with the bright green & hints of red just really speaks to me. It's simple and understated yet it grabs your attention too. I can't wait to see it lit up!

And this one I had to take pictures of for future reference. I think I want to decorate Parker's room like this with fairies and butterflies. It's just darling.

Anyway I'll let you know how it goes on Thursday and be sure to take more pictures. And I promise I'll update after Parker's Dr. Appt. as well.