Sunday, May 30, 2010

Family Adventures

Last Wednesday, my family jumped in the car and took off for the mid-Atlantic, like we've done pretty much the last two or three Memorial Day weekends. We visit MacTroll's oldest brother and his family. We love them to death and miss when we were only an hour away.

The first day of travel took us 8 hours to get to Wheeling, WV. We stole my Aunt Anne's idea from last year and wrapped some presents for him to open every couple of hours on the way out. I also set up an iPod full of family friendly songs. The big motivation though, was booking hotels with swimming pools. When we got to Wheeling it was 4 p.m. We immediately checked in and changed clothes and played in the pool for an hour. X-man also really liked that we were overlooking the Wheeling Jesuit University Track. Oh, if only there had been a way to walk from the hotel down to the facility to use it. Instead, I ended up doing a Zone 1-3 run around the Linley school and up and down the main road. (Cough, hack, cough.)

We left the next morning and drove through the mountains. We were in Pennsylvania for a few minutes then back into West Virginia, then Maryland... then West Virginia. No, we didn't get lost. The state lines are just a wee bit random up there. Finally, we pulled into our friend Rita's driveway. Rita has a slew of kids toys, so we visited for an hour and X-man got to drive the "forbidden" battery-operated jeep. Afterwards we continued on for an hour and a half to MacTroll's brother's.

Since we've been here, X-man has been in heaven playing with his cousins. They've put up with a lot of whining and fussing during his difficult periods. We've played baseball, had water fights, played Legos, investigated new Wii games, tried our hand at some new board games, camped out in the backyard, made s'mores, gone to the Port Discovery Children's Museum, went to the semi-annual sale at Nordstrom's, eaten at the Cheesecake Factory and P.F. Chang's, road a carousel, picked 22 lbs of strawberries at a local farm, given X-man his first taste of fudge, I ran my first 10k and right now, the gang is extracting gallons of honey from my SIL's bees.

Tomorrow morning after breakfast we'll be piling our stuff back into the car and driving to Columbus, Ohio. We got a room near the Easton Mall, so I can go for a long walk (i.e. window shopping) while X-man and MacTroll take a ride in MacTroll's friend's new convertible mini. There's a pool at the hotel there, too. :-)

Oh, and as for the 10k. It was hot. 85 degrees. I took along my heart rate monitor and it says I was between 175 and 193 beats per minute the entire 1 hour and 11 minutes that I was walogging along. Yes, I was walking for portions and it was that high, and I clearly wasn't trying to break any land speed records. But I finished and then promptly replaced the almost 1,000 calories that I burned with a giant vegetarian lunch at PF Chang's... I really should have picked out that meal before we went to eat there. But I was hungry, really hungry.

Hope all of your Memorial Day Weekend adventures were as fun as ours!

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

Missing the Miracle

I'm having one of those mornings.

That sentence is the precursor to this post. Just a warning.

I had a child four years ago, and I fought my way through a crappy postpartum depression to write about it. I'm happy I did, but I remember supportive words from people in the middle of it. Well, they were words they thought they were being supportive with, but really, they just made my body run cold. Now when I hear the same kinds of sentences, my body doesn't react, but my eyes squint together and my lips purse.

There is no doubt in my mind that X-man is totally my favorite person in the whole world. I love him in a way that I haven't loved anyone else. And when he decides on his own to tell me he loves me, I am floored that someone so fabulous could even consider me worthy of such affection. In other words, I love being his mom, even if the frustrating days and the awesome days are sometimes completely out of whack.

On the other hand, I am neither awed or wowed by reproduction. I don't think of being a mother as a some kind of banner of courage or awesomeness. I reproduced. It's part of the whole process of life. I don't feel like there's some heaven with a bunch of baby souls looking down picking parents. I don't think I'm better than other women who cannot or chose not to reproduce. I made a choice with my partner to have a child. We had sex. Upon fertilization a 3-year hormonal mess lived inside my body and then continued to wreak havoc after the birth. I champion surviving that much more than I champion my 24-hour labor and delivery. I champion getting a 4-year old who LOVES his friends, sometimes more than they want to be loved, and also strives to be independent while also being able to ask for help.

So when people say, "You carried a baby and gave birth to another human being!" and label me as some kind of warrior. I get confused. We aren't a small group of people. This isn't some great accomplishment. In fact, having a baby is a pretty mediocre achievement, unless you are one of the few who are able to beat fertility barriers (which is insanely awesome in your case!).

To have a child is to choose the giant likelihood that you will have no sleep; never be able to take a sick day again that's actually for yourself; have less money than you'd like; worry about money more than you'd like; enjoy going to places with other children who are running and screaming because you know other people's children will be having the same tantrums as your own and feel safe there; acknowledging your sagging breasts, stretchmarks, giant C-section scars, weight gain, weight loss, ugly hair, food on all your shirts, the unbeatable pile of laundry and the messy house... it all comes with the territory. You had a kid. (But I'm totally cool with the idea if you decide you want a cleaning service, lawn service, plastic surgery, babysitter, financial planner or if you feel an undying need to play the lotto... go for it. Seriously.)

Trying to turn that whole motherhood thing into some kind of giant girl club of miracles is insane. The "aren't I cool because I gave birth to another human being?" complex, at its core, seems like a giant poster of insecurity to me, but others see it as having an overwhelming sense of pride of their biological accomplishments. I don't understand that idea.

Mostly, I don't understand it when it becomes clear that being a Mommy (and what they hope is a good one) is their entire identity as a woman.

"X-man's Mommy" is one contributing identity to who I am right now. But it is not the identity I put all of my eggs into. It is not the only one that matters. It is part of the whole, but is not my everything.

I am still a strong supporter of the idea that parents and children make their way in the world the best they can. However a family needs to operate to do so effectively, and to the well being of everyone, is in the best interest of that family -- and arguing which parenting techniques or choices one makes is better than the other is insane to me, but so is forgetting how motherhood enriches who you are rather than allowing your identity of Mommy to be all you and the world knows about you.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Big Boy

My son had another stepping stone of independence today.

He WILL NOT let me go to the bathroom with him in a public place. He insists on going into the boys bathroom and going all by himself.

I stand around outside the door all nervous. But at the same time, is it wrong that I'm more nervous that the little man is peeing all over the seat or the urinal or the walls and floors more than I am that something will happen to him while he's in there?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

Slowing down the tortoise

Want to know a secret? It's hard to work backwards. I don't mean literally backwards. I mean it's hard to have knowledge about how to do something and then start all over -- at a slower pace than you're used to doing and paying more attention -- or having intention about it.

For example, eating. I don't really enjoy my food. I don't eat slowly. I don't savor every bite. Mostly, I act as if I need to consume what's right in front of me as fast as possible before it disappears. I don't know why. I was never a stray animal. I never had a point in my life where I was starving. No one has ever taken food away from me. But my dietician talked about slowing down at meal times. And I have yet to take part in it. You know why? Because I see the food and I forget. I just go-go-go. It's hard-wired into my brain. So, I guess I need to start unplugging it.

Another example, running. I've been running since September. I have two speeds: my pace and walk. Apparently, the heart rate I have at "my pace" is way, way too high to actually power my body in a good way. If I want to improve how my body works, how fast and how far I can go, I have to retrain it by starting over and going slower so I get more energy from my stored fat rather than burning carbs. This is hard.

I set my heart rate monitor and follow the 12-week cardio plan that iPower gave me. But today, as I'm doing intervals between zone two (heart rate 141-147) and zone three (148-156) my heart rate monitor buzzer is beeping at me pretty much the whole way that I'm either going too fast or two slow. It took me 25 minutes to finally get in the groove of it out of a 60-minute run with 5-minute warm up/cool down at the front and back end. And holy cow does slowing down take intention -- and humor. Because let's face it. I'm at a "moderate walk" at zone 2 and a "sorta jog" at zone 3. Because "my pace" which isn't fast at all has me at a HR between 165-180. And that whole time, I'm past my anaerobic threshold, which makes my body freak out.

Good times.

Know what else is hard? Repeating things 4,000 times each year for over 4 years hoping that it finally sinks through your kid's/dog's head that part of their behavior needs to stop.


So, I got over strep just in time for allergy season to start. Even typing the a-word makes my eyes water. And, of course, because of all the rain we've had, my yard projects have been put on hold. The one day we didn't have rain, X-man was home all day, and then -- I got strep. And then MacTroll came home -- and he got strep. Today, I'm feeling much better, except for the fact that we all just spent 2 hours out in the sun doing yardwork... and now I have hives up and down my legs because I'm allergic (see watering eyes again) to grass.

But the pepper plants are all in. The blueberry bushes are in. The strawberry garden is mulched, so is the pepper garden. I've got about an hour more weeding to do on the east side of the house before we can mulch that area. And then I've got to do the west side of the backyard and around the hot tub -- all before we take off for Baltimore on Wednesday.

It's supposed to be hot all weekend. I'll have my weeding tan. :-)


Friday, May 21, 2010

Testing Positive and other medical news

So, I woke up last night covered in sweat feeling like someone had shoved a lighter into the back of my throat. This morning I called into work, took X-man to school and then went to Convenient Care at Mega Clinic, where in 15 minutes I tested positive for strep and got sent out the door with a prescription for a Z-pack. (The nurse and nurse practitioner who saw me were awesome, by the way.)

The rest of my day changed at that moment, as has my weekend. I'm resting. Literally, I've been in bed since returning from the grocery store. I'm leaving in the next few minutes to go to Urbana to dog sit for Zoe and picking up X-man. He's supposed to get a haircut and pick up a birthday present today, but I think we're going to try to do that tomorrow instead.

I had to reschedule the CARE Tricycle race on Sunday. And I won't be going to Curious J's birthday party,  because I don't want to infect any small children (even though it will be exactly 24 hours after I started my dose and shouldn't be infectious by then).

In other news, MacTroll filed an appeal with his place of work regarding the hellacious issues I had with Evil Insurance and Mega Clinic last month. Apparently the two businesses couldn't agree on how to deal with their bureaucratic difference of opinion, so Mega Clinic decided the best course of action was to just keep billing me and make me responsible for their marital woes, while Evil Insurance looked the other way and twiddled his thumbs and whistled like he wasn't supposed to do anything in this case anyway.

I like my husband's place of work. Not just because they do fun, dynamic things and hire a lot of very lovely people, but because they have always walked their talk regarding employee benefits-- at least in our experience. The last time we had issues with Evil Insurance, my husband's company's review board stepped in and told the insurance company to pay what should be covered for my child's corrective helmet. Verbally, we were told, "You'll be getting a check. We're so sorry you went through this. We don't treat kids like that."

This time, they stepped in for me. It took them 3 business days to get done what I failed to be able to get accomplished after I spent two months going back and forth between both companies. MacTroll got the e-mail yesterday that my claim will be paid and we should receive a check in 7-10 days.

Seriously. If we're ever in Cupertino and I meet someone on their insurance review board -- I'm going to hug them. They make me believe that good, solid, helpful people do still exist somewhere in mega corporations. Giant thank yous. Giant, giant thank yous.

Thursday, May 20, 2010

From Tiger to All Star!

Today, I got the news that X-man will be moving to a four-year-old room on June 7th. He is going to be in All Star 2. He is so excited. I've been talking a lot about the big boy school (the 4 year olds are in a different building near the primary school) a lot. He apparently finds it very motivating because tonight, without a sheet of paper to copy the look of the letters, X-man wrote his name for the very first time from memory.

He was scribbling on a post it pad on my desk. I asked him if he wanted to write his name. He said sure. So I reached for the pen so I could write it on the paper and he could write it underneath it like he normally does.

"No, Mom. I can do it by myself."

He made his X, which he's been doing forever. Then usually he scribbles. But this time, he made an upside down V and then put the line through it. It was clearly an A. I reached out and grabbed KTDID's hand. Then he made an N. Sure, it was backwards, but seriously, who cares. Then he made a D, a very clear E and an R with a long stick, a short stick and a swirly circle in the right place.

I was ever so proud. He and I have been alone all week. And as far as weeks go, this one was superb. No tantrums. No freakouts. No hitting or biting. No screaming in my face. It was awesome.

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

I think I'm getting sick

I don't get sick much any more. I attribute it to having an immune system that gets introduced to craziness from a) working in a pre-school, b) attending a college classroom, c) having a child in pre-school and d) having a husband who flies all the time.

Truthfully, when I'm down it's usually for one day things like migraines or pulled muscles. Things you don't get from germs. I do get random fevers from time to time. But my body usually takes a nap and pulls through within 10 hours or so.

Yesterday MacTroll called from Northern Virginia. He said he had a sore throat, cough, headache and achiness. I told him I was sorry to hear that, but he had three days to get over it so he didn't bring it home.

This morning I woke up with a sore throat and the achy muscles. But my muscles normally ache from all the changing around I've been doing in my workouts lately. I should have known this wasn't the "Oooh, that hurts so bad it's good" feeling that comes with a good workout. This was a, "Really, can I just go back to bed."

And, of course, since it is X-man and Loosey spend the day together day, I had a whole fleet of stuff for us to do, and he was up and ready to start doing them at 6 a.m. Seriously, any other day I'm trying to haul my kid out of bed at 7:45 to get him to school before 9 a.m.

We played with his LeapPad. We watched this video of Spiderman, Ironman and the Hulk that I found on YouTube. Then we went downstairs and I made him breakfast. He decided he didn't want the pancakes I was going to make him, so I made him an Eggo waffle with strawberries and a piece of bacon instead. He ate the bacon and his Flintstone's vitamin and left everything else. Sigh.

Then we played the Eric Carle 123 game that he won from the Westview Fun Fest. He loves it. I got out the gold fish so he could use them as counters while we did some basic addition and subtraction together. Afterwards we played Super Mario Brothers until it was time to go to the gym.

Usually, X-man is in school when I go to the Fitness Center. But today, he went with me and we used the free childcare. I was worried that he might freak out that he didn't know the adults in there or any of the kids, but I knew Quigs was coming with at least one of her kiddos, so I used that as bait. The truth was -- he walked in, said hello and started playing. He didn't mind at all. I told him I'd be back when my class was over. He apparently did pretty okay. He said he even used the bathroom there. :-) Class went kind of crappy for me. I've been trying to keep my heart rate in certain zones, so I wasn't able to do most of the high intensity stuff I usually do in class so I could keep my HR under 148. It was hard. Hard, hard. It was hard because I knew I usually can do more and was restricted by the HR. But it was even more hard because I knew I was dragging. My body had no energy. So I was kind of happy to do the lower intensity options and I used lower weights than normal.

By the time we got to Touch-a-Truck, I was winning Mother of the Year. I forgot my camera in the car, and I was so tired I wasn't into dealing with X-man's wandering around. He did get to drive the crane truck, sit in the racing car, drive the minivan. He was shuttling me to the airport hanging out the window waving at people to get in the shuttle. Then he pretended to crash into the truck in front of us and go out to see if the kid driving that car was okay. If he could, I bet he would have volunteered to go over and drive the ambulance to the scene of the accident. His favorite part was sitting in the SWAT truck.

At 11:45 a.m., we walked back to the car and went to Zelma's for lunch. He was starting to get a bit grumpy, so food was an imperative. Plus, he wanted to know why the firefighters ran out of hats AND the pizza man was out of chocolate for chocolate milk. (See how the day was going?)

By the time we got home from lunch, I was pooped. We took Riley to the vet for his bordatella vaccination and then came home. We sat in the hot tub for 20 minutes and then got out. Now we're in the middle of quiet time.

A belated birthday present arrived on our front doorstep for X-man though. He got some Pez and some matchbox cars that he's playing with as he watches TV.

I'm hoping to feel better before taking him to the park for dinner and playtime tonight. I only have two more days of work, so I'm hoping to NOT be sick tomorrow morning.

And hopefully, everyone will be over it so we can all have a fun and busy weekend this weekend!

Monday, May 17, 2010

Inefficient body

I'd been getting a feeling lately like my body wasn't working right. It started around March and it's continued through May. I had reached my goal weight in February and found that at 154, my body hated exercise. I had no endurance and felt fatigued all the time. The weight range the impedance gave me as a healthy weight was 152-160 lbs. However, since running my 10-mile race Easter weekend, I've found that my body has leveled off between a 161-164 lb weight and really likes training in that area. I figured it was the extra fuel. And I was right -- to an extent. My body was craving a combination of protein and carbs. The weeks where I was high cardio I couldn't eat enough carbs. The weeks where I'd exercise moderately and would eat less, my body wanted protein. But the body weight would stay the same. So I was replacing all the calories burned with food.

This morning I had a New Leaf metabolic training test done at iPower. It's more tailored toward the athlete than a generic person, and I was hoping it would give me some insight into my body.

Turns out, sitting in a dark room for 15 minutes, hooked up to a VO2 machine showed that I am a fat burning dream. But, when I ran on the treadmill (even at my pokey 10:30/min mile) my body has issues using fuel efficiently. The test divided my heart rate into 4 zones. Apparently, my body either burns fat well in my warm up zone (zone 1 -- which is usually my walking speed) and then it pretty much goes anaerobic at my NORMAL PACE. The ideal is to get my aerobic base (heart rate 141 currently) and the point where my body goes anaerobic (heart rate 156) closer together. On the good side, my body doesn't just die in the middle. It fights. There are little sparks or jumps on the graph, but I have to fill those gaps in.

What does this mean? It means at my regular running pace, I'm burning 14.1 calories per minute, but only 1.2 of those calories is burning fat. The rest is trying to take it all from carbs, which explains my complete carb overdosing the weeks I have big cardio training weeks.

I knew buying that heart rate monitor was probably a good inclination. :-) The analysis not only tells me where I am, but gives me a 12-week cardio plan to follow to retrain my body that instead of going from zone 1 straight to zone 4 and not using fat as fuel, it'll actually take steps to go from zone 1 to zone 2 to zone 3 to zone 4... kind of like the transmission on a car.

Imagine if you only had two gears. One to start in and one where you had to drive at least 35 mph in. And any time you went over 50 it shouted in pain and anger for a fifth gear -- then you'll have a better understanding of how my body currently works.

So, we'll give it 12 weeks, see if my performance improves through the plan, see if my body is happier exercising at the lower weight again and I'll be best friends with my heart monitor. Another good thing that happened. Even though I was 6 lbs heavier than when I took my last impedance test, I had a lower body fat ratio using the pincher test. The accuracy really is about the same. I'm still healthy, but instead of the 24% I was before, I was down to a 23%. My goal is to be between 21-24%, so I'm happy that I'm maintaining. However, the extra six pounds, of course, dropped me back into the overweight line for the BMI. :-)

I'm taking the results to Carle today to see if my health educator can help me come up with a diet division (protein v carbs) that will help me out.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

Marvelous Michigan

Quigs and I took a road trip to see Minnie Mouse and her extraordinarily delightful parents in Grand Rapids, Michigan, this weekend. As usual, Quigs was an awesome travel companion. Keep her in Diet Cokes and don't mix fruit in her salads, and she's happy as can be. I love that.

We arrived a bit later on Friday that we thought, mostly because I forgot about the time change AND had to leave an hour later than I had planned. But for anyone traveling to Michigan and crossing the Indiana/Michigan border on I-94, if you need a place to eat take Exit 1 into New Buffalo and try the Stray Dog Café. It was an awesome little lunch/dinner place right on the water. If I ever take X-man up to the dunes in that area, we're so going to eat there again.

We spent the weekend exploring Grand Rapids, which is a pretty pleasant place with lots better shopping than Chambana (Nordstrom Rack, a rocking Jo-ann Fabrics and a number of quaint little gift and resale shops are all over the place.) My theme for the weekend appeared to be cherry. I came back with cherry preserves, cherry-based trail mix, we ate at the CherryDeli. We also had a snack at the Wealthy Street Bakery and checked out the Fulton Street Farmer's Market, which had some lovely flowers and lots of locally produced meat and baked goods.

We stayed with the Mouse family, and had fun catching up on each other's lives. I'm glad we went. It was ever so much fun, and I can't wait to hang with them again. Low key is always lovely.

Friday, May 14, 2010

In My Head

This morning I did something that I don't normally do. I got up at 5 freaking o'clock and went for a run. I aimed for 60 minutes or five miles, whichever came first. (5.25 miles at 10:23/mile) The streetlights were still on. First light was just cracking and sending a warm orange glow over the Prairie Fields subdivision across the street from my house and the temperature, after nearly a week of 25-45 mph gusts, was perfect.

I've had a lot on my mind lately. We're working on some household improvements. (And by we, I mean the flooring professionals at Flooring Surfaces in Champaign and Nusbaum Custom Carpentry in Mansfield) School just ended. X-man's been a constant 4-year-old neurotic puzzle. My husband seems pretty engaged as a father, but kind of tired and checked out and in need of a vacation otherwise. I have a number of friends with uncontrollable life drama happening at the moment. There are other things I know I should be paying more attention to, but I'm not.

Is it just me? Because I'm so distracted, I'm not sure my head is still connected to my body.

Thursday, May 13, 2010

Comic Adventures

In February I found X-man these two easy reader books that were "My first graphic novels." One was about an airplane trip and the other a train trip. He thought they were pretty cool, but each time I was at our "little library," the only graphic novels they had were for older kids. And I have to admit, I kept forgetting to look for more of them online to request them. For some reason when we're at the "big" and "medium" library, either X-man is always with me, so I have to stay close or I'm just so fascinated with the picture books my mind gets frazzled in happy land.

So, yesterday when we were at the "big" library, much to my son's dismay, (He's a big fan of the "medium" library and all of its play baskets.) X-man reminded me about the graphic novels. But instead of saying, "Hey, Mom, we need the train book thing." He said, "MOM! MOM look! It's Scooby Doo! In a MAGAZINE!"

And there in the magazine area were indeed Scooby Doo comics. I showed him how to lift the shelf tray, he chose four (because apparently three wasn't enough), sat down at a table and spent the entire 30 minutes we were there looking through them. Figuring the comic book part of our session was done (although I did find some hard cover Star Wars and Scooby Doo ones in the New Book section), I went in search of my new favorite readers -- the "Science Solves it All" series. It's a little bit like "Sid the Science Kid" on PBS, but it's a bit older and it's a first chapters book. X-man obviously can't read, but I got one a couple weeks ago about a  little girl the whole school was convinced was a vampire and a team of kids set to work trying to find out if it was true (and, of course, they just found a little girl who really liked bats). We came back with three of those -- and a handful of freaking Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles. I avoided the Power Rangers -- "But the green one has my name!" mess. Loosey is not a Power Rangers fan.

X-man likes uncovering mysteries. As we were going into the library there were some wet spots on the ground and then they spread out (like someone had dumped a drink out of their car as they were driving away). "Look Mom, there's a big puddle here and the water continues that way. It's a clue!"

So, yeah, he's not Sherlock Holmes -- yet. More like a mini Hardy Boy.

Monday, May 10, 2010

The sleep pee-er

Last night at 11:35 p.m., X-man made some loud sounds like he fell out of bed and tripped over his own feet -- twice. Then he struggled with his bedroom door. MacTroll got up to see what was happening. X-man stood in the middle of the landing with his eyelids closed.

When MacTroll asked him what he was doing, X-man turned and walked toward his bathroom. He couldn't get the door open, so he stopped, whipped down his pants and peed on the bathroom door. MacTroll threw it open, so most of the urine would land on the tile.

When he was done, X-man pulled up his pants and stammered back to his bed and fell asleep. He had no memory of the incident in the a.m., but MacTroll did -- since he spent another 15 minutes cleaning pee up off the floor.

Me, I could have gotten up to help, but it was 11:35 p.m., and I figured my Mother's Day card was still able to be played until midnight. :-)

Saturday, May 8, 2010


X-man has become quite the little athlete. Every struggle I have with him regarding his "learned helplessness" completely dissipates when we play sports. He's not the best or the fastest or the most coordinated. But he is the most interested. He listens. He attempts new things. He soaks up sporting terms and repeats them back (even though we still use his made up terms when we play baseball). And he seems to have learned that just by participating -- he wins, which to me is a good start to a lifelong choice of fitness.

So, he plays T-ball until May 22. We signed him up for Little Illini soccer starting in June. He ran the 1k.  He's like a fish in water at the pool. He's curious about tennis and basketball. This week he got introduced to the game of miniputting. MacTroll took him on Wednesday. They played 36 holes of miniputt and X-man still cried when it was time to go home.

After school yesterday, I took him to the Mother's Morning Out Garage Sale at Temple Baptist Church in Champaign. He jumped in the bounce house, examined the toddler toys and then I bought him some bake sale items and we left to go home.

"I don't want to go home."
"Where do you want to go?"
"Miniputting, please?"

I looked at the clock. It was 4:15 p.m. We had 45 minutes, why not? MacTroll met us at Old Orchard Links in Savoy. We played the front 18. MacTroll and I took much longer than X-man and his little kid putter. But he sat on the picnic table at the front office waiting, and then when he heard a song on the radio that he liked, he'd get up and dance.

He was ever so sad when I told him that we had to go home and have dinner. "But daddy and I played both courses last time!"

He got over it a couple minutes later.

Then as we're driving home he asks, "Mom, I think it's time we went bowling."

So I've been eyeing that Kids bowl free summer bowling pass at Old Orchard for $24.95. But I guess I better take him and find out if he really likes it first...

Tuesday, May 4, 2010

Bike to Wherever Day

Today is my community's Bike to Work Day. Since I don't have work today, I chose to bike X-man to Next Generation for school. MacTroll got back from his derm appointment (Believe it or not after 4 years he finally went about  his wicked dry skin!) early and I asked if he wanted to come with, since now we have two bikes. He thought about it and grabbed his 10-year-old bike helmet and off we went. We stopped by the Bike to Work Day pit stop at the Savoy Recreation Center, picked up a t-shirt and some grapes. I entered in a few contests. There was one other parent dropping off her pre-schooler on her bike when we got to school.

I had forgotten what a pain in the ass the trailer can be with a heavy kid and just a little wind. MacTroll pointed out a few times that I seemed to be working a lot harder on the Mommy Schwinn than he was on the road bike. But I got the child there and got home. But there are days when I think a Surrey would be awesome to get around town in.

But it's a gorgeous day outside, and I'm seriously thinking of taking the road bike up to Parkland. Except we have a 1:30 appointment with the flooring place re: replacing our toddler/potty training/cat vomited on/dirty feet that's been professionally cleaned every six months since we moved in with hardwood... And there's no way I can make it from school to Flooring Services in 15 minutes.

So, MacTroll is picking me up at 1:15 from class and then driving me and the bike over to the meeting, where then I can ride home down first street. I'm going to have to do some crazy calculations using Google maps to figure out my routes in order to accurately log my Moon miles for the U of I Extension Moon Walk competition and I'll also need enough "oomph" left to continue to weed and mulch the gardens. An outdoor project we started yesterday and it's amazing what $200 of hardwood mulch from Country Arbours can do to the look of your yard.

Tonight, KTDID and I are taking the first load of stuff to her new apartment. She moves on Saturday. I am both excited for her and sad at the same time. Does that make sense?

I guess I need to get all the outdoor stuff in that I can get in before my mid-May allergies hit (grass seed) and I am attached to a Kleenex box and Claritin for a month.

Saturday, May 1, 2010

Moving right along...

Last weekend was my first triathlon. This weekend was the marathon relay with Quigs, Special K and Special K's awesome sister, the Mighty Meg I had fun, but my most favorite part was running with friends rather than against them. I was happy to wait for Meg, and I was so happy to see Quigs.

I have three weeks before my next timed race. The Buffalo Trace is on May 22nd. It's a 5-mile trail run, so after school is out, I'm going to drive out to Lake of the Woods and check the trail out. My sister is coming down to run that one with me. And with my next MMO paycheck, I'll have some new trail running shoes, since I'm hoping to do the 7.1 miles at Lake Mingo again in June (we'll see how different it is from doing it for the Fat Ass in February).

Other things on the horizon include trips... the annual Memorial Day trek to see family out in Baltimore. X-man is so excited to see his cousins and play with the big kids. We miss them so much, so it's nice to get out to see them.

While we're there I signed up to run the McVet 10k. So, it looks like I'll need new regular running shoes soon too.

Must keep moving.