Monday, March 07, 2011
First, Happy Birthday to my boy!! My oldest turns eight today...can't believe it...I am the mom of an eight year old!! Little family party tonight and a bigger friend party on Friday after school so fun stuff and lots of pitfalls ahead. We have made a few good decisions. Fresh strawberries and angel food cake for dessert tonight. Son picked spaghetti for dinner, so no problem there. For his party we picked a cupcake cake...if you haven't seen one it is just a bunch of cupcakes organized into a shape and decorated similar to a sheet cake. We like this choice because not only is it easier to serve, but portions are already set. Unlike a sheet cake, there is no rationalizing and going back for seconds because "I got a small piece the first time" or some other such nonsense-lol! We are putting out the standard chips, but also some healthier Cheez-it type crackers and Sunny-D instead of soda, which is only slightly healthier overall, but has less sugar and is fortified with a few vitamins and kids will still drink it-lol! It is a kids' party after all and I don't want to be the mom who serves "health food" at her kids' parties thus forever alienating them and causing them to be friendless the rest of their lives ;). So, a took a few steps in the right direction while still trying to meet the needs of the group.
So, tired of eating....I am, for the most part, sick of food. Sounds strange, I know. Not that I don't want to eat, I do. I get hungry and know I need to eat something, but nothing sounds good. Nothing sounds interesting. Food has become BORING. Yep, I'm stuck in a food rut. I look around my kitchen and it is all the same things I've eaten for the past 5 months. There is nothing interesting, nothing fun, nothing even particularly healthy. Even as I walk past the produce section nothing is jumping out at me and saying "eat me, I'm delicious".
I'm in a food rut of epic proportions. I think part of my problem is I haven't been trying anything new, but even there I'm kind of stuck...I need to get out the ol' cook books and do some searching. I need some inspiration.
I need spring and the new produce. Winter produce doesn't inspire me much I guess, even the gourds are harder to find right now, although I haven't looked for a butternut, might be able to find one of them if I looked, or an acorn...maybe I'm afraid I'll get my heart set on one and the price will be unreasonable since they aren't being advertised right now.
I cook the same things over and over and over I need some new material.
I did do one thing today. I was looking at a magazine (Women's Health if it matters) and there was an ad for sweet potato fries seasoned with chipotle. MMMM, sounds delicious to me, my family will probably hate them, I think I will like them. So, while we were at Wal-Mart I sent my husband off to the next section while I hit the frozen foods. I know Wal-Mart carries the brand so I was hoping they would have them and sure enough there they were. Along with the regular sweet potato fries and some other bags of potatos mixed with vegis that looked intriguing. So they all went in my basket. I caught up to my husband carrying 5 bags of frozen goods-lol. I also grabbed one bag of standard fries for the kiddies in case they really do hate the sweet potato variety, also not sure how the chipotle will go over with the younger palate. My kids get some spice in their diets, but I've never had these before so they might be a touch too spicy for their young tastebuds. So, I guess I am off to a start anyways...now I just gotta think of something to go with the fries.
Maybe I need a day with the cook books AND a trip to the grocery store all by myself...yep, sounds like a plan :).
What do YOU do when you are in a food rut and/or what is a suggestion for something new to try?
Saturday, March 05, 2011
Today was supposed to be a long run day, the run I actually did was just shy of 3 miles, just over if I count the cool down walk. My shins were not happy this morning. Many of you are familiar with my shin issues and today we were revisiting those problems.
It took me longer than normal to work out the kinks and start feeling good enough to just enjoy the run. But, once I got there it was fine and felt good to be out.
So, what made the run overall better than it actually was, is that the run did what running does so well and got my brain working on how to get back to where I want/need to be. So during the run I formulated a new running plan, pulling my amounts back and slowly rebuilding them. For the next month/six weeks or so I will focus just on building distances again and feeling good during my runs, trying to reduce the amount of warm-up I need to get in the groove.
Before anyone starts in with "you need a warm-up"...I know...I am referencing the additional time I need running to work out the kinks, stop and stretch some more, etc. before I feel good running. I know there is a warm-up "window" that everyone needs and that it varies from person to person. I'd just like to shrink my window from the extra-large portrait window to a much smaller kitchen window :). So, I am not back at square one, square one was a long time ago, but I have taken a few steps back and that is okay because from here on out it is forward movement again. I am looking forward to the many great runs I have ahead of me :).
So, I also "test drove" my Nathan pack this morning. It's the Nathan Intensity Women's Hydration Vest...here is a picture-
Let me just say...I LOVE it!! The pack itself is cute, the drinking tube (straw?) wraps around in a very convenient way. There is a clip on the chest strap that holds the straw where it is easy to access. It has a bite valve that includes a lock to prevent unintended leaks, although I tested with the valve open too and did not experience any leaks, not really a concern it all I'm carrying is water, but I would be more careful and use the lock if I was carrying something other than water. It is a simple twist to lock or unlock the bite valve, very easy to use. The pack carries two liters, which I really love because I consume ALOT of fluids during long, hot runs. Heck, I consume alot of fluids during short, cool runs-lol! I enjoy having something to sip on during my runs and having the pack will make that so much easier. The pack has a number of straps that allow you to adjust the fit in great ways. Today I put the pack on and adjusted the chest strap to comfortably snug, but as I started running the pack felt a little jiggly, so I reached to each side and adjusted the side straps a little tighter with a simple tug and problem solved. The pack settled in closer to my back and no more jiggling. Even loaded with the full two liters the pack was not heavy and felt very comfortable on my back. It has two different pocket on the front straps perfect for gels, beans or blocks and easy to access. An additional pocket on the back is ideal for keys, i.d., cash, and bars, etc. I definately give this a 5 out of 5 after my first outing :). LOVE IT!! Definately a worthwhile investment.
Oh, almost forgot, I also test drove my new sports bra-lol!! Well, that shows you what a great sports bra it is!! I got the Moving Comfort Fiona. I LOVE it too. So comfy and does the job very well. I love that it has a hook closure, just like a regular bra. No more Houdini imitations trying to get into or out of my bra. Also the straps are adjustable-from the FRONT. Yep, no more Houdini trying to adjust straps in back or having to take the bra off to adjust them. They adjust with velcro so that minimized "slippage" after adjusting too. One feature I also enjoy it that it employs both the compression and encapsulation methods helping to reduce the "sports bra uni-boob". I seem to be particularly prone to this issue so even this bra does not eliminate it, but the girls did a much better job of sharing the space than they usually do :). This bra also does a great job of holding in all the "side and back spillage". Yep, a costly bra, but again well worth the investment, my cheap-o Champion bra is being demoted to second chair. Starting a savings account now for the next Moving Comfort I am going to buy :). Here is a pic of the Fiona- . I ended up with white because they didn't have pretty colors in stock in my size, I'm watching for pretty colors to show up in my size, or I'll just reduce until I fit into a pretty color :).
So, today was a great run...got lots to do today so TTFN as I bounce off to do some housework and school work before the day ends :).
Thursday, March 03, 2011
Wow! I can't believe how busy I've been this week. And with so many different things. Monday was practically non-stop, Tuesday a little less busy, Wednesday insane again and today is Hubby's birthday. Tomorrow is Family Fun Fest, Saturday "long" run and Sunday is finally a day to relax , after church of course. Monday is son's birthday. So it isn't letting up anytime soon either-lol!
Monday was fun, PTA in the a.m., a quick (very quick) trip to Temecula (next town over the hill) to a book store, then back again so I could go back to the school and paint a sign for the school's book fair next week. That was actually really nice, the principal set up the sign in the empty library and except for the occasional staff member short-cutting to the staff lounge, it was really quiet and peaceful-I will gladly paint more signs under those conditions :). Monday was also more gardening. We have such mild winters it is actually time for us to start planting things here. If you are starting from seed anyways. So we bought and started alot of our garden for the year.
Tuesday was fairly busy too, but just with all the little life things. Grocery store, cleaning, etc. Tuesday my main package from Running Warehouse arrived-whheee!! Nathan Hydration Pack, Brooks running hat, therapy roller (not the bigger, thicker foam roller, but the smaller, hand-held, roller that gets deeper into the muscles) and Shot Blocks :). Everything was blue, even the shot blocks-lol!! So far I LOVE my hydration pack. I tried it on and checked it out. It has multiple straps for adjusting the fit so I think after some monkeying around I've got it in a good spot. I am going to "test drive" it on Saturday's run. The run won't be anywhere long enough to justify a hydration pack, but I figure that is actually best because if there are any issues I can resolve them during a short run instead of finding a problem during mile 6 of a 10 mile run :). So, can't wait until Saturday to give that a try :).
Wednesday, I volunteered for spring picture day at school. That took all morning and was tons of fun :). That was said just a teensy bit facetiously. All I did was stand with the photographer and remind kids to take of sweaters/jackets before getting their pic taken, comb the occasional wayward hair, and kept the kids moving through the line. If my line ran out of kids I would borrow a few from the line across from me until my next class arrived. So, nothing too exciting. I did get to send my son's class through the line and my daughter's class came in across from me so I borrowed her from that line and had her take her picture with me. My kids thought it was very exciting to have Mom at picture day. I was glad I did it when they gave me vouchers for free pics when my kids' pics come in-Yay!!! Those school pics get expensive...if I'd known about this perk before I'd have been there at every picture day-lol!!!
Today was a nice, little, short run :). Today is also Hubby's birthday so we'll have a little family celebration tonight. :)
Also, I've signed up for two classes to work on the next little bit. My program gives me a full year to finish each class, but I want to finish them faster than that so I will stay on track to get my Bachelor's degree by 2014. The classes are College Algebra (required for the Statistics class which is required for graduation) and The Italian Renaissance. Guess which one is my "fun" class. :) The textbook for the Algebra class arrived yesterday and I immediately freaked out...eeeek!! It has been maybe a bit too long since I've done math. It starts with graphs and I'm looking at some examples and thinking "I remember x-axis and y-axis, but how did that parabola get there?" Yeah, not feeling too confident about that class right at the moment. So I did something to help out and ordered "Algebra 1 for Dummies" and "Algebra 2 for Dummies". For real, no joke-lol!! If those books don't refresh my memory nothing will and I will be taking Introduction to Math at the local college while trying to pass College Algebra through my University program. I might be looking for a good tutor-lol!! Fortunately, the class comes with an online program. I am doing the Review section and it is helping alot. It is refreshing my memory on somethings and on others is giving really good examples of how to solve the problem. So far, so good. But I've only done 10 of the 80 review questions-lol!!
I'm really excited about the Renaissance class :). History is my niche so this will be a good thing :). Still waiting for those books to arrive.
So, with PTA, college classes to study for, 3 kids and summer break looming just around the corner. I really need to get good at this goal setting and schedule making thing.
Any suggestions? Anybody have one of those Staples "Easy Button" thingies? Time machine? That time turner necklace Hermione uses in the Harry Potter books?
How do YOU accomplish everything you need to do in a day?
I'm still trying to catch up on all my spark reading I let myself fall behind on-lol!!
Hubs just took youngest to the park, that is going to be a big help...I better get busy while she's gone :). Hope everyone is having a great week :).
Also...tips on the Hydration pack...what do you put in yours? Freeze or no-freeze? Straight H2O or additives? Questioning minds want to know :).
Monday, February 28, 2011
Some people might be able to guess where I am going with this because of the Labor Day weekend shout out. Figured it out yet Kristen?
I get to go to Disney!! The one down side is that I am only doing the 5K not the Half, which remains my dream race to be completed another year. Still can't quite afford that one this year.
But, the major upside is my kids, all three of them, get to run the kids' races. Matthew and Kaylie, my two oldest will run the 400 meter dash. Rebekah, the youngest will run the 200. So, I am gladly passing on the half in order to spend that morning running and then watching my kids run and get their medals.
I really cannot wait for September to come :). It's okay though, because I ordered my shirt a size too small so hopefully by September it will be too big
So, even though it isn't the half, I'm counting it towards my racing wish list for the year :). So that is two down and two to go. Leaving me to find a half, or repeating the torturous route of last year's half and signing up for my 10K in June. Then I might throw a couple 5K's in here and there, maybe a Turkey Trot or Jingle Bell run and a couple others like that.
The race plan for this year is finally coming together. :)
Sunday, February 27, 2011
Hello all, well, I can't believe it's been more than a month since I've been here.
Life is an interesting thing.
I kind of got run over by life for a bit there. For the past month I've been fatigued. Not just tired, but actually fatigued (don't worry this is not going anyplace tragic), I just haven't felt "right". So, of course, since I wasn't feeling "right" I stopped doing all the things that helped me feel better-lol!! I can be really dense sometimes, but in reflection, it was probably what I needed. Way back in December the sickness started in my house. There has been this horrible illness making its way around our area, probably your area too, it starts as a flu and morphs into a cold that refuses to go away. I had this last year, it was awful. It started in December with oldest daughter and took its sweet time working through the family. I thought I wasn't getting sick because I had it last year and I was sure it was the same thing. I still think it was the same, but I think that I was only partially immune. I think my fatigue was my body fighting off the renewed attack. I did a pretty good job, but finally came down with an extremely mild version last week. Now that I am over it I am actually feeling much better. I woke up at 6 this morning and didn't want to go straight back to bed until 8!!
So, I did what I said I wouldn't do, and totally let everything slide while I was feeling down. I still kept with a few things but I didn't keep with most of my routine. So now it is time to start again, tomorrow-lol! Yes, I am doing the "I'll start tomorrow". Only because today is Sunday and I don't want to start a Sunday exercise habit I know I won't keep. We observe the Sabbath and Jillian Michaels just doesn't fit the "day of rest" theme :).
On a much happier front, it is amazing how motivating a few new toys can be-lol!! The IRS decided to grant our request to return some of the money we loaned them last year and I've been happily shopping away at my favorite on-line running site-www.runningwarehouse.com. Free shipping, lots of fun stuff, I've been enjoying myself-lol!! I can't go too crazy, but I've gotten some good stuff. Some arm warmers (for those of you asking "what the heck is an arm warmer" it is a knit sleeve that slide over your arm....yeah, think leg warmers from the 80's, only much sleeker and for your arms-lol-they come in handy as the seasons change for running. Not sure whether you should wear your short sleeve or long sleeve running shirt? Problem solved-short sleeves with arm warmers, then if you get too warm they just slide off and tuck into your pockets or waist band.), oh, fun toe socks for running-Injinji socks-I've been wanting a pair for awhile-wish finally granted-can't wait to see if they are as fun as they seem :)...another short description-socks with toes so that each toe is in its own little sock-supposed to reduce friction (ie: blisters) and help your feet maintain a more correct form-yeah, we'll see if reality lives up to hype, but they look pretty fun anyways :). A new pair of shoes and a hydration pack are on the way too :). Trying a move from Motion Control to Stability...way back when I got my last pair of shoes (August I think) Karvy09 sent me an article detailing injury rates, etc. and it indicated that Motion Control shoes might not always be the best choice and while I've done well with my Motion Control and have definately had a decrease in injuries, they are really heavy and I'm hoping a lighter, cushier pair of shoes with some stability built in will still work for me and maybe even be better-here's the link: peakperformance.runnersworld.com/201
s-most-likely-to-cause-an-injury.html . The hydration pack is a 2 liter capacity Nathan backpack. And, yes, I'm ordering without trying it on, but running warehouse has a good return policy so I'm okay with that :). It is really cute (important, I know) and apparently my color for spring is going to be deep aqua (kind of like the stone on my background pic), because that is the color of the trim on the backpack and I just picked up a new running shirt and jacket in the same color-lol!! Does anybody else find themselves doing that? As the new colors for each season come out you find yourself gravitating to the same color over and over? Last spring/summer it was raspberry for me, this spring it seems to be aqua :). And, I finally got my Road ID-yay!! So now, if I do happen to run into a car driven by a blind 90 year old, someone will be able to call my husband. I know, that sounds horrible, but the whole reason Road ID got started is for that exact reason and truth is that as careful as I am when running there are alot of idiots out there so I will actually feel more comfortable going out on those runs with my bracelet on. Even if I am with someone else and something happens the bracelet give the responders and doctors important information to help me, things like my blood type, which even my mom and sister probably don't know, and probably wouldn't remember in an emergency even if I told them what it was ( O positive by the way). So, very, very happy about that purchase. The one I'm maybe MOST excited about though...prescription sports glasses. Yes, now I will be able to run, see and keep the sun out of my eyes all at the same time!! I am very jazzed!! The "dispensing optician" kept trying to steer me towards the pretty, fashionable, sunglasses, but I bucked the trend and picked out extremely sporty, silver framed, cycling style glasses that wrap almost all the way around so they will stay put..they look like something a real runner might wear and nothing at all like something I've ever worn-lol!! I will probably look like a total dork wearing them, but I wanted something that wouldn't slide down my nose like my regular glasses and would be comfortable while running. So that's what I got :). I have to confess that I felt really awkward even looking in the "sporty" section of sunglasses and almost went for the really cute brown tortiseshell, square frame glasses the lady steered me towards at first. I felt like a poser looking at the "sporty" glasses. I almost talked myself out of them saying "they are too "boyish", just because they look kind of like my husband's off the rack sunglasses. But, I knew what I wanted and needed and decided to heck with convension, so what if they don't have little diamond accents on the side, who cares if they are "boyish", they are for the purpose of protecting my eyesight during daylight runs (cateracts run in the family) so I got them. When they are ready I'll put on my new shirt, my arm sleeves and my new glasses and take a pic :).
I also signed up for........my very first MUD RUN!!! It is local (yay), a little on the high side ($45) for a 5K distance, but for a good cause here in town. It is in May, so now the training has to begin in earnest again. Not so much for the distance, I've had the 5K distance down for awhile (just want to get ALOT faster), but I need to work on strength for obstacles and flexibility for injury prevention. This is going to be FUN. I think it will be the last outing for my really old running shoes that are still in the bottom of my closet, the first pair I bought as running shoes. It'll be a good send off for them :). And I will be doing it "blind" because there is no way I'm taking my new glasses in the mud-lol! So, now that I have some new gear and a purpose I am ready to meet tomorrow head on again, but maybe with a little less vigor than before so I don't crash and burn :).
Time for me to get ready for church, but I'll be stopping back in soon to catch up on a million blogs I've missed. Sorry everyone, I'm gonna try harder (plus, I'm almost done with a really huge project that I've been working on and has been taking up most of my "extra" time). Happy Sunday everyone, or whatever day it happens to be when you read this rambling mess of whatever it is :).
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