Friday, July 30, 2010

First pair of running shoes

I got my first pair of running shoes when I was a freshman in High School. As I ran in the 10K last weekend in Snowflake, I kept thinking about how much better I am at running now than when I was in High School Cross Country. I remember just dying at meets. Sure I was running a little faster then, but I have a lot better stamina now. I was really happy with my time of 51.55. I was hoping for something under 60 min. I think when I run with my double stroller (about 80 lbs total) I go about 11 min. miles, so I was pleasantly surprised I could run almost 8.5 min. miles by myself!! Between miles 2 and 3 I felt like I was going to puke big time, but once I hit 3 I burped and I felt so much better. The second half of the race I kept thinking "I'm just now starting to run" to make it feel like I was only running a 3 mile race. I think it helped. I wonder if I could have run even faster/better if my mp3 player had been working...

I really wanted to kick it up the last 2 miles and I focused on catching "gray shirt" in front of me. I caught him with about 1/2 a mile to go and we sprinted in together. I finished a split second behind him. I think I was about the 6th woman in, which isn't bad, but I didn't medal because the other women before me were also in my age group (20-29). I nearly puked when I came in, but boy was I happy with the race when all was said an done. I didn't drink enough water, though, so I felt pretty darn crappy a couple hours later and the rest of the day. I need to get a fuel belt for sure. That happens every time I run 6 mi. or more.

The other day I saw the cutest little pair of new balance running shoes at Kid to Kid and they happened to be the perfect size for Dean. So I bought them for a whopping $6. So worth it.

We got a video of him jogging with them, but the cutest thing about it was when he ran out of the shade into the light and noticed his shadow. The rest of the video he watches what his shadow is doing.

Walt's birthday party at home

Chocolate zucchini cake with a chocolate butter cream frosting. It was really quite delicious and made a fabulous mess.

For these first two videos, I suggest you watch without sound! Too much going on. Dean's toe gets smashed at one point. I don't know, I wish I could edit these. The audio drives me nuts. I almost didn't post them, but there are really cute moments in the videos I figured I'd put them on for the grandparents if no one else.

Walt's shirt from Grandma and Grandpa Bras(s)

Opening Walt's present.
Dean was so excited about the present he kept shouting "Go Walter! Go!!"

Here are the boys playing with Walt's water table. Dean got some potting soil from the garden before I was out. They were having a ball, but I decided potting soil was NOT the best type of dirt to be used in this application, so right after I took the video I cleaned it all out. Don't want Walt to be eating fertilizer...

The first step

Tonight Walter took his first step all by himself. He stood himself up in the middle of the living room without holding on to anything, stood there a few seconds, smiled at my coaxes, and stepped. He only made it one step, but he was excited. We repeated the process a couple of times. It was cute.

Here's a video of him walking with a push toy about 2 weeks ago.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Walter's first birthday

Happy Birthday to my little Walter!

We had a fun double birthday party for Walter and Charlie (his cousin who is 2 days older) while we were in Snowflake. We had originally planned on making cakes, but by Saturday we were pretty burned out, so we picked some up from Bashas' bakery. When we mentioned it was for 2 babies turning 1, the woman from the bakery got all excited and gave us 2 free cupcakes with cute dogs piped on top. It was perfect so they could dig into their cupcakes without ruining the cakes we bought for everyone else. They also had a cousin turning 9 tomorrow so we were celebrating 3 birthdays.

Here's another video where you can see the other birthday boy, Charlie. His sister Molly is holding him.

Tonight we had a "party" for Walter here. He got to open his one present from us (a water table/sink thing), a card from his great grandma Bras(s), and a card and shirt from his Bras(s) grandparents. I also made a chocolate zucchini cake for him. Dean was SO excited for both the present and the cake. Dean spontaneously started singing happy birthday and cheered Walter on as he was opening his present. He wanted to feed Walt the cake. It was all very cute and fantastically messy. Our camera battery died during the party, so we didn't document everything, but I"ll post the pics and videos we did get once the battery is charged again.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

The rest of the...clothes

Ok girls. Here are the rest of the clothes I purchased in the last 3 weeks! I hope you enjoy your virtual fashion show. =) Overall I got 20 pieces of clothing, 2 pairs of shoes, and 5 necklaces for around $300. Considering I heard on the news yesterday that the average parent spends $450 on EACH child at the beginning of every school year, I think I did ok. I mean, c'mon. I've never really shopped in my 29 years of life. Hopefully now that I have some staples I shouldn't have to purchase much long as I can keep this shopping monster under control!! =) The only outfit I can still take back is the brown patterned skirt and sweetheart neck brown shirt. The rest are mine for keeps.

White shirt and dressy brown shorts
Brown Asian inspired top (with same brown shorts)
Maroon Shirt and black pencil skirt
Turquoise skirt (and shirt, though you've seen that before)
Yellow and green shirt (this was purchased on my own. I wasn't so sure of it, but it was kind of fun and bright, and I wanted something not so dark)
Brown Shirt and Patterned skirt (Too old lady?? This is the one I'm on the fence about. Matt says he likes it.)
Black and green paisly shirt and black dressy capris (one of my favs)
Purple and black shirt and black pants (my favorite of all the outfits I think)
Black blousey shirt (gray capris purchased earlier this year)
Royal blue shirt and black casual capris (I think I might use this for family pics...what do you think, this or the turquoise shirt?)
Purple dress and black shoes (pictured in previous post)
Hot pink skirt (pictured in previous post)

Wednesday, July 14, 2010

My fashion progression

I've never really considered myself a fashionable person. Cute, but not quite fashionable. In high school I kind of did my own thing. As far as I remember I didn't really dress like my friends. Maybe I did, and I just think I was "original". I did, however, wear make up at that point. (1999)

In college I started toning it down a bit. The fantastic thing about college clothing was living with 5 other girls!!! The cutest outfits I wore were rarely owned or purchased by me. The bad thing about that was the [lack of] clothing shock when I got married! I never really recovered from that.

Right before Matt came home from his mission, I remember going shopping with my sister in VA at Kohls. It was the first time I'd heard of that store. Anyway, I bought myself some orange plaid capris. When Matt saw them, he told me that they looked like pajamas and that it was almost embarrassing to be out with me while I was wearing those. Ouch! haha. I got rid of them pretty quickly, and honestly, I think that was the beginning of the end of colorful clothes. (Looking at an old pic of them, they were pretty ugly, so don't judge Matt too harshly. I was trying to be fashionable, but just didn't know how, so I basically just gave up the notion.) Oh, and once he mentioned that I looked better without make up and I stopped wearing that! I figured it was cheaper and easier, so I was on board!!

In the last few years, I've ended up going with the most very basic of basics. Solid, fitted knit shirts from Target or Walmart. Kahki capris and shorts. I'm talking basic. The only dress/skirt purchases I've made in the past 10 years were during pregnancies. And when I bought those I got nice and stretchy dresses so I could wear them when I was not pregnant!

When I went to Phantom in Feb. with my friend Kirstin, I realized that I didn't have one decent shirt. Not one. After that I bought a few shirts from Target (all the same shirt in different colors!) and slacks from Old Navy to tide me over.

It wasn't until a week before our scheduled family pictures that I realized that even those weren't quite cute enough to be professionally photographed and documented for posterity's sake. So, as part of a trade for piano, I asked my friend Kary (who loves fashion and helps mainly frumpy mothers find a style) to teach me to shop.

Being from rural Snowflake where we don't even have a Walmart, I've never really known how to shop. I didn't know where to shop. I honestly don't think I've ever known what size I am. I couldn't ever find pants that fit both my waist and legs. I've always felt like the women's section was too "old lady" and the juniors/miss section has just gotten uglier and uglier every year (um, maybe that's a sign that I'm not a 'junior" any more and that I'm out of touch with the young kids now a days. hahahaha.)

2 days before our pictures we went shopping for 3.5 hours straight. We hit 6 stores. She had lists of things I needed. We were in and out. No messing around. Most importantly, I found out what size I am, what sections and stores to shop, and general ideas of what looks good on me. Pencil skirts. Wedge shoes if I want some height. Skirts just below or in the middle of my knee or to my ankle, but nothing mid-calf. I'm generally a size 4 petite in pants and a small in tops. It's nice to be able to go into a store and grab a wad of clothes and have the majority of them fit properly! Oh, and I found that when you shop a little higher quality than Old Navy, Target, and Walmart, pants actually fit me properly! We got me make up, jewelry, shoes, dressier shirts and pants and skirts. I felt like I was channeling my maternal great-grandmother when I bought my hot pink skirt.

So, in the past 2 1/2 weeks I've purchased:
2 black capris, black pants, dark brown dressy shorts, hot pink pencil skirt, black pencil skirt, purple dress, a patterned skirt, 8 or so shirts, black wedge sandals, light brown strappy wedge sandals, 5 necklace/earring combos (from the dollar store till I figure out what kind of jewelry I actually like), 2 eye shadows, mascara, lip gloss. Am I missing anything? It feels like it...

These aren't great pictures. I had Matt quickly snap them when I got home from shopping so I could see what photographed ok. I wasn't smiling in any of them, so I cut off my head! =) I've been trying to photograph my other clothes, but Matt's been working tons and I don't have a tri-pod, so I've been pretty unsuccessful. My shirts are where all the pattern is lest you think I got all solids...

I didn't feel like I'd quite gotten what I wanted for pictures, but I felt more confident in my ability to shop, so the next day I went out by myself. I felt like a contestant on What Not to Wear, trying to follow rules and find things that were out of my comfort zone but cute. I found this shirt and I felt happy enough with how it worked with the clothes I got for Matt and the boys. Paired with a cute necklace and dressier capris it makes a pretty cute outfit.

Our pictures got rained out and rescheduled for August. But that was fine. I felt like our outfits needed a little fine tuning anyway. I went shopping again. For a person who hasn't done much shopping at all in my life, I have been a shopping maniac the last few weeks!! I actually want to go again tomorrow to find a few more casual, yet cute tops that I can wear on a daily basis.

I have to admit, I am kind of liking wearing a little make up again (mascara and very subtle eye shadow and lip gloss), and I've really enjoyed (*gasp*) shopping. It's fun looking cute. I hope I don't start enjoying it too much!! Being a plain Jane has definitely been kind on the pocket book.

Sunday, July 11, 2010

Cold Turkey

Well, Walt has pretty much weaned himself cold turkey. Last night when I tried to feed him it was immediate chomping. I let him try both sides, but all he wanted to do was teeth. Same story this morning when he woke up, at church, at nap, and again this evening. I refuse to be a teething toy, and he obviously is not interested in nursing. Luckily he's 2 weeks from 1 year so I'm just going straight to cow's milk. He's been stealing Dean's sippies and sucking down his left overs for weeks now. I hope it will make it a little easier for our trip to AZ that's coming up soon here.

I didn't do this with Dean. I did a VERY gradual weaning with him, and it was after I was pregnant with Walt. I think I was 8 weeks pregnant with Walt when I finally weaned Dean from his night and morning feedings. So, I had no pain when I stopped nursing him. Not so with Walter.

Ouch. Cold Turkey is definitely more painful. I think tomorrow I may bust (pun intended) out the cabbage and give it a try depending on how I feel.

(The black mark on Walter's head is soot from playing in our fireplace. He LOVES it in there.)

Sunday, July 04, 2010

Land of the Free

I'm grateful I live in this country. I think my appreciation for America and personal freedom skyrocketed after having lived in China for 6 months. It's been 9 years, but I still remember how grateful I was to come home and be able to do things like go to church without meeting clandestinely and to come and go as I pleased without military personnel watching my every move. Oh, and it's also nice to be able to give a speech without a party member writing or rewriting it. I think Americans often forget or don't realize what we have.

As I see it, this freedom comes from at least 2 sources:
  1. A promise from God that if we obey his commandments and are faithful, we [who live in this Promised Land] will prosper and be kept safe. If we turn from God, this promise is void. So, let's be good little boys and girls and remember to whom we are indebted! I personally prefer the protection of God to the protection of a government who removes God from the equation.
  2. The men and women who give their time and their lives to serve and protect and maintain our freedom. It would be unimaginably difficult to be a military family, but I am forever grateful for the people who are willing to give their lives that we might live a life with freedom from oppression.
And to celebrate tonight, I will leave you with some pictures and videos of my cute boys.