Sunday, June 29, 2008

a night without the kids ...

On Wednesday, J and I celebrated our four-year anniversary. And on Saturday night, we marked the occasion with a much-deserved and extremely rare night away from the kids. Now when I say extremely rare, I really mean almost never. We have only left the girls with a sitter four, count them, four times ever. Add to that the maybe half dozen times they've been left with their grandparents, and we are up to a whopping 10 dates in the last 37 months. That's an average of one date every 112.4 days!!

Yes, I know it's sad. But we actually really enjoy being with the girls and in most cases would prefer to bring them with us.

Anyway, last night we left them with a friend, whom I swapped babysitting with (who doesn't love a FREE sitter?!?!) and headed out to the Indy Car Race at RIR (also FREE thanks to J's company). And we had a great time (despite the brutal heat). The race was awesome, there were some amazing people watching opportunities, and did I mention it was free? We joked and laughed and didn't once have to tell anyone to "sit back down!" Then, after five relaxing hours, we had to return home.

I knew when we got back that we were going to hear how Dizzle was difficult at bed time, since she has recently been throwing out every excuse in the book not to go to sleep. And boy did she deliver. Apparently, she spent an HOUR AND A HALF, kicking and screaming to get out of her room. But our sitter was firm, especially since we told her to "take no crap." And it worked. Dizzle finally fell asleep. But not in her bed. Instead, I found her directly in front of her bedroom door (I literally had to squeeze myself into the room). And where was Doodle? Well, since Dizzle had vacated her bed, Doodle did too. But instead of the uncomfortable floor, Doodle just grabbed some real estate in Dizzle's bed. It was pretty funny. But the kicker was they were sleeping like this, with the LIGHTS ON!! Who does that? Really, how do you even fall asleep that way?

is running dangerous?

I'm sure there are people out there that think running is dangerous. Sure, you could get hit by a car, manage to get injured, overheat, dehydrate. But really, think about the alternative.

Tuesday, June 24, 2008

remember when you said ...

There are two main reasons why I write this blog. The first is to keep friends and family updated on the events of our household. And the other reason is to have a record of things the girls say or do that I might not remember years, or even months from now. It is a great way to chronicle our lives and to have loads of blackmail.

Dizzle just said something to me that made me think, "That's so cute," and "I hope she still feels that way 10 years from now."

We were talking about ways to help each other around the house. I mentioned that she already helps me a lot. She always does the laundry with me. She replied, "The laundry is fun. When I am grown up, can I help you with the dishes?" (so cute, right?) I said, "Yes, when you grow up." To which she enthusiastically shouted, "Oh, it's going to be so much fun when I grow up, tomorrow!"

It was so cute, optimistic (because growing up really is fun) and a great example of the innocence of a child. She really has no clue that household chores are not fun, but rather tedious tasks I'd prefer to ignore. It was also one of those moments that I want to put in my back pocket and save for when she's 13 and doesn't want to help out at all. At that moment I will be ready with, "Remember when you said ...."

and she's out of bed again ....

I'm pretty sure that I've mentioned once, twice or maybe a zillion times that Doodle is my little stunt woman. She climbs and jumps and scales everything. And that includes pulling her little behind out of her crib (or at least too close for my monitorless lifestyle - I really should invest in a video monitor, it might be easier). Anyway, in an attempt to keep Doodle from breaking an appendage AND to create space in an overpacked room (two twin size beds and a crib), we moved her to her big girl bed last Wednesday. And she's taken to it quite well.

J and I figured that we would try it for a day or two and see how it all worked out. Honestly, at 15 months, I expected Doodle to get out of bed constantly and sleep poorly. But that hasn't really happened. Sure, she gets up once or twice, but she always goes back and there was only that one time that she fell asleep on the floor after banging on the door to get out. (no one's perfect) And now that she's officially out of the crib, I was able to take it out of the room and put toys in it's place. And for the first time ever, the girls can actually do more in their room than sleep.

But like I said before, Doodle gets out of bed once or twice each night (before falling asleep) and in this time she has somehow found a way to torment Dizzle by simply showing her love. It usually goes down like this.

We put the girls in bed and close the door. Five minutes pass and Dizzle is screaming, "Get away Baby!" Doodle has either climbed into or stood next to Dizzle's bed totally freaking her out. Seriously. Dizzle, who is a good 8 inches taller and 10 lb heavier than Doodle, is afraid that her little sister might try to hug her. It's hysterical. We open the door and Dizzle is often sitting there with tear-filled eyes, while Doodle has the biggest smile plastered on her face. I really can't help but laugh.

Sunday, June 22, 2008

oops, i'm in labor ...

OK, let me just start by saying this post is not about me. Just about something I saw on TV last weekend called, get this ... I Didn't know I Was Pregnant. I'm sure you're laughing, even if you've never been pregnant yourself (seriously, how do you miss something like that?). Most of the time it's pretty obvious when someone is knocked up, at least in those last few weeks. But this show chronicled four women who swear up and down that they didn't know they were having a baby (and sometimes two) until the head emerged from the birth canal.

Yet, as crazy as I thought this show was, I could not turn it off. I just sat there trying to figure out how a pregnancy could go unnoticed. (Maybe I'm weird or something but the day I'm late, expect me to be peeing on a stick.)

Basically, all the women had the following things in common.

1. They weren't trying to conceive.
2. They had irregular cycles or no cycles at all.
3. They were overweight, but not obese.
4. They had a complete lack of pregnancy symptoms.

Apparently, those characteristics (in combination) were enough to "hide" a pregnancy. But still, it seems crazy to me. I had two nearly symptomless pregnancies (except the weight gain) with Dizzle and Doodle (OK, with Doodle there were waves of nausea - but no vomiting), yet even so, there were two telltale signs of pregnancy, a lack of a period and fetal movement. I swear at times I thought that my abdomen was going to explode like in that scene from Alien. There was no mistaking the movements for excess gas, as the show suggests (trust me, I've had a lot of gas.) I really can't fathom how this could happen.

Now, I mentioned before that these women had irregular cycles, but I'm pretty sure that while it is OK not to get a monthly period (from a health standpoint), I'm also as sure that there is usually a reason for not getting one (ie. birth control, stress, being underweight, being overweight, PREGNANCY.) Maybe I'm just being naive, but if my body was all out of whack, I would go get it checked out, at least to have some piece of mind. Or maybe I'd just take a pregnancy test.

Wednesday, June 18, 2008

so remember that trip I mentioned?

Well, we're back and now that I have FINALLY had the chance to regroup, here's how it went. Overall, really good. It was nice to see everyone back home. Most of them had only met Doodle once, and some, never. My grandmother gave us numerous examples of her craziness, Doodle became one with the Lord, and we sweated our way through G's graduation. I saw the perfect example of why disciplining your children is important and ate more crap in one weekend than I have in the first six months of this year.

So, let's start with my grandmother's craziness. The first afternoon I was there, Grandma was at my Aunt's house (which is on my mom's property) when she turns to her sister and says, "H, look at that blue car. It's Dad. He's slowing down to say hello." (Can I just mention Poppy passed away over 10 years ago?) H then replied with a confused look, "Who?" And Grams is like, "You know, Dad. Pop." And we all just kind of looked at her. No one was really sure if she was "seeing things" or if she was making some sort of joke. Either way, it was funny to witness.

Grams followed up this performance at Doodle's christening when she told me the story of the time she and one of her friends took my twin cousins (now 30) into the bathroom, turned on the tub, threw some water on their heads and said, "In the name of the Lord." And as she put it, "Baptized them on the spot." I laughed and thought, "Boy, she was even crazy back then." She followed her story with an offer to do the same for Doodle. She said she would even go home and get "her collar." Does anyone else see the coo-coo birds?

This is not to say that we didn't have our fair share of fun with the christening. We did. In fact, G, Doodle's Godmother, came up with this message for the cake.

Seriously, I sometimes wonder if we all aren't on crack.

On Sunday, we celebrated Father's Day (and G's graduation) with lunch at my most favorite Italian restaurant, Tony's Pasta House. For real, if you are ever in TR you need to eat there. The bread is to die for.

Then came G's graduation. With the threat of thunderstorms, and I say threat because they never materialized, the ceremony got moved inside our 118 year old, air-conditionless high school. This meant that G only got three tickets (we had to beg, borrow and steal two more so that the girls could come). Anyway, 800 guests and over 300 graduating seniors were shoved into a hot and sticky gymnasium for two hours just to see the graduates receive an empty diploma case. Apparently, you have to pick up the actual diploma later. But while it was disgusting and smelly in the gym, I was so happy (and proud) to see my baby sister receive that empty case and flip her tassel. It was worth every sticky second and the twelve bathroom trips Dizzle needed to take to witness it.

So all sweaty and gross, we headed back to the car for the six hour trip home. The girls fell asleep almost instantly and other than having to drive through one serious storm near Fredricksburg, the drive was rather pleasant. All-in-all, I would say the trip was a success.

Tuesday, June 17, 2008

are you a mom?

I took Dizzle to gymnastics this afternoon and was asked this very question. The daughter of the owner came up to me after class and said, "Are you a mom?" To which I replied, "Yes, this is my baby (Doodle) and the little girl in the pink leotard (Dizzle) is my baby." She then got a stunned look on her face and said, "Really? I thought you were a teenager."

She continued to ask me questions, including, "Are you sure?" and "Are you married?" I just laughed, and took her comments as a complement. Perhaps I just look REALLY young for my age. Either way, this is not the first time I have been asked that question. I have on occasion been mistaken for a high school student (after I had already graduated college, might I add) and more than once I've been asked if I was the girls' nanny. In fact, a few months back, a gentleman came to the door to ask if we wanted our lawn aerated. I said, "No thank you." To which he replied, "Well, can I talk to your mom?"

Seriously, I didn't think I looked that young. I just have to remember that while I may get carded for the next decade or so ... at least when I am 40, everyone will think I'm 25. That's how it works, right?

Thursday, June 12, 2008

my baby sister is all grown up ...

This weekend (well, actually Monday) is my baby sister's high school graduation. Yes, you read that right ... HIGH SCHOOL!! While I've been out of college for five years, gotten married and had two children, she's a fresh-faced 18 year old with the world at her feet. And I am so excited for her!

But to witness this momentous event, we have to road trip. That means packing two extremely active toddlers into the car and listen to them kick and scream (and laugh, if I'm lucky) for a minimum of five hours. Our past road trips have a sorted history. We've made 10 hour trips without a peep from the backseat. And we've heard ear piercing yells for two hours straight at the end of a drive. So really, you never know what we are going to get.

Either way, I promise updates and pictures when we get back ...

Tuesday, June 10, 2008

picking up habits ...

I like to think that I set a good example for my children. I tend to be active, polite, a healthy eater, eco-friendly. Overall, I would be quite happy if my children turned out like me (not to toot my own horn or anything).

This is not to say that I am vice-free. I'm not. I can not live without ice cream and I am flat out addicted to television. Luckily, I workout enough to counteract my "bad" habits. And my bad habits really are bad. I have ice cream (a good 2-3 servings) five or six nights a week (and if we kept it in the house, it would be every night). And my television addiction is even worse. I watch at least three hours at night (which is actually more thanks to TiVo), plus however much I take in with the girls during the day. And although I really don't want the girls to pick up these habits, I'm pretty sure (OK, quite positive) that it's already happening. And this is how I know.

On several occasions over the past few days, Dizzle has turned off the TV upon exiting the room. I thought, "Wow! She gets that we turn things off when we are done with them. Way to be green!" Oh, but this is not the case (at least not entirely).

This afternoon, when I took Dizzle to the bathroom, she turned off the TV. I then turned it back on, since Doodle was watching it. Upon doing this, Dizzle yelled, "Turn it back off. I'm going to miss it!"

She wasn't turning off the TV to be eco-friendly. She was doing it because she thought that the show stopped if she turned it off, and would resume when she got back. Like her mother, Dizzle is addicted to television (and she apparently thinks all TV sets have TiVo.)

And since I'm not giving up TV anytime soon, I don't really expect her to either. Now if I could just get her addicted to running ...

Monday, June 9, 2008

Sprint Tri, Take Two

So, last night I registered (as an Athena - yeah for being 150!) for the 3Sports Triathlon on July 20th. It's the same exact course as the Power Sprint, so at least I know what I am getting myself into. Will I train more? Probably not. If anything I would like to get in the pool a couple of times and see if I can freestyle without drowning. Because if not, I will be doing a 300 meter breaststroke yet again. But regardless of how the swim goes, I'm sure it will be a ton of fun and if not, at least I'll get a free t-shirt. Right?

So who else thinks I'm crazy? J is about two seconds away from committing me. But I assured him, this is my last race. Well, until the half marathon. But then I'm done. Maybe.

Saturday, June 7, 2008

i am too tired ...

I am too tired to ...

be witty.
type this blog.

Today's run (7 miles) kicked my butt, I ran more like 6.7 miles and walked the rest.

Dizzle and I spent the day together partying it up. Literally, we went from one party to the next. Doodle stayed at home with Daddy since she's suffering from a case of the spots!

And despite the fun filled day I had, I have very little to say. And it's mostly because I am so damn tired.

I promise, I will be back when one of the following happens:

1. Some crazy, wacked out thing happens in my life and/or

2. I don't need to go to bed before the sun sets.

I'm sure option number one is far more likely.

Wednesday, June 4, 2008

that urban edge ...

Much of today's youth (whoa, that makes me sound old) has been influenced by trends in urban culture, whether it be through personal style, music or vocabulary. And apparently urban culture is trickling down to three year olds. How do I know? Well Dizzle said this to me earlier:

"Mommy, Doodle is my baby sister and Daddy is your Baby Daddy."

So true, Dizzle. So true.

Sunday, June 1, 2008

my new favorite sport ...

So, everyone who has ever raced one told me this would happen. I was going to compete in my first triathlon and get hooked. And they were right. This morning K and I took part in the Power Sprint Triathlon and it was AWESOME! (More on K later!)

I arrived at the race site at 5:30 this morning (the only drawback to the race was the crazy early start) and grabbed myself a prime location on the rack. After setting up my gear for the transitions, I headed over to get body marked. That was the first surprise of the day. I assumed (wrongly) that they wrote your number and age on you with grease sticks. Nope. They were old school. My arms and legs were marked with super huge PERMANENT Sharpie markers. Seriously, I scrubbed and scrubbed and still have the shadows of 145 on my biceps.

Anyway, since this event was time trial (meaning you race against the clock, not the people around you) next came the long wait. My start time - 7:35:45. So I had about an hour and a half to stand around and freak out about how many people were going to pass me in the swim (answer - 4) and what was going to happen if I had to pass someone on the bike and totally screwed it up (I did it unscathed.)

So when 7:35 arrived and I jumped in the pool, I told myself to relax and remember to start my watch. And while I did manage to calm down, I totally blanked on the watch, which ended up being a good thing! (I never obsessed about my pace.) The swim, as I expected, was the most challenging part. I started behind three 12 year olds and directly in front of an 11 year old. I knew I was in trouble. Kids swim crazy fast. So, after just under eight minutes and four passes, I climbed out of the pool (way hard, since it was deep and my arms were tired) and ran to the transition for the bike. Just a side note: I did my one and only pre-race swim in a yards pool and finished in 7:14. This was a meters pool. 300 yards is less that 300 meters. And that would be the second surprise of the day.

Once I was in the transition area, I grabbed some water, ate some jelly beans, switched my gear, and most importantly - took a breather! When I eventually got moving again and mounted my bike, I quickly found my groove, pedaling effortlessly. The 20K bike was scenic, rolling and enjoyable. I felt good (with the exception of my completely numb butt.) And before I knew it, I was back at the transition area. I had hoped to finish the bike in 50 minutes, but to my surprise my official time was just over 41 minutes (surprise number three).

Again I used the transition to refuel and to catch my breath, then I headed out on the run. My legs were SUPER tight and I felt like I was running super slow, despite the fact that I passed 15-20 people. I just kept thinking, "I am going to be so happy if I just average 9:48 miles!" (I was convinced I was running around 11 minute miles.) About a half mile in, my legs were back to normal (mostly) and I just kept telling myself, "Keep going. You're almost done!" When I finally did get back, and crossed the line I was really happy (to be done and with my time). I looked at the clock and figured that I had finished in just under and hour and a half (which was my goal).

Once the results were posted I was even more psyched!!

My 5K split was just over 25 minutes. My fastest 5K ever!! (8:15 miles - surprise number four)

AND ... I finished 5th in my age group with a time of 1:18:48. That would be surprise number five. Just imagine if I had trained! Overall, it was a killer debut.

And speaking of killer debuts, I mentioned that I raced with K, who was also competing in her first tri. And if you were even slightly impressed with my performance, you will be blown away by hers.

K finished 1st in her age group with a time around 1:06:15. She averaged 21.2 mph on the bike and ran 7:05 miles in the 5K!! And the icing on the cake ... K was awarded the Top Rookie Award for best performance by a first-timer. K, I am in awe of you!!