Friday, December 31, 2010

Reflections of 2010...

What a year. I say what a great year for our health!!!

1. I am 90% "cured" of my skin condition by ditching my dermatologists who just threw their hands in the air in "we don't know what else to do" and shot me with Cortisone. As a general rule, don't let doctors shoot cortisone in you. Really, it's like taking duct tape and fixing a leaking faucet. I was grateful to hear about a Natural path. doctor whom changed my diet, eliminated the tons of yeast growth in my gut, added vitamins and minerals which helped my restart my immune system, which ultimately healed my skin. Healing from the inside out. I have my life back.

2. The boys were not sick during this past year. Maybe one cold each. That's a lot considering they have gone "Public" as in public school. My kids never have had an ear infection, continual flu, or cold that seem to afflict a lot of young kids. People would tell me, "oh, they'll get it when they go to public school". Well. So far so good. Let's roll this into 2011. They are so impressed with themselves that they can make it across the monkey bars at the park, ran a 5K with me, and just play by themselves without me directing and participating in every event. I will be forever in debt to God for letting me have these two boys.

3. My lovely. He has had a chronic sinus infection for over a year. He has seen an ENT, had catscans, sleep study, been on the heavyweights of antibiotics. NOTHING HELPED. Then he went to my "witch doctor" as he calls my Natural path. doctor. His treatment started six months ago and now he is back to his pre-sinus self. I have my husband back. He went from popping Exedrin and allergy medicine every 6 hours to relieve the symptoms to nothing!!! One year ago, he would only have enough energy to make it to work and home. Then sat on the couch until he went to bed because his head hurt so badly. We are all thankful for lovely's return to the Saturday morning dancing, Logger Larry, and just fun guy again.

4. Marathon. Done.

5. 20 year high school reunion. I looked great, in fact better than I did in high school. The girls I grew up with were all there and we had a ball talking about our kids and husbands. All of the girls either stayed home with their kids or their husbands stayed home. How cool is that?

6. Finding vintage Fiestaware at a garage sale that I was going to pass up. Finding an ice cream maker with two extra bowls for $3. Highlight of my yard sale '10.

7. My lovely's sister got married. She has been dating the same guy for eight years and finally they got married. It was a big and wonderful wedding.

8. My grandma passed on in June. She was a hoot and I think...no I'm sure I get my big mouth from her. I miss her. I am thankful to know her. I hope she's finally getting to do all the things she was too fearful to do here on earth. She was 92 years old.

9. Got to intern with my mom for one week. She is awesome. So talented. She is an extraordinary semstress and she specializes in drapes, upholstery, and clothes. She is an artist. I got to spend a week with her and it was too short. I wished I could have been a better daughter to learn from her before now.

Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Slippers Part 1




Slippers Part 2
















My feet are cold. Very cold. So, why not make slippers?

Gingerbread houses...again




Once again, I made gingerbread houses. However, instead of 24 of them, I only made eight for a party for the kids at our home. This was done back in the beginning of the month but just came across these pictures without kids in them (I don't have permission to put other people's kids on this blog). Fun was had by all and my kids thanked me over and over for putting this on for their friends. The kids were pretty good at decorating and waiting until the end to dive into the candies.

more repurposed pillows

Cut a 14.25" x 14.25" section of the bottom of a checked dress (use the buttons as the center).



Sew all four sides together. Unsnap the buttons and shove a 14" x 14" pillow form inside. Voila!! Repurposed pillow.
Total time: 10 minutes.

Tuesday, December 28, 2010

re-upholstered kids' furniture








Koo's preschool asked me to make a slipcover for these kids' furniture. The fabric was free (see earlier post on fabric) leftover from a friend. The zippers I had from previous jobs so all in all it was free with my donated time. I love it when I can help bring new life to old things. I hate thinking this could be in a landfill somewhere because of wear and tear.
How was this accomplished? I cut out pieces of fabric to the exact measurements of the cushions plus 0.5 inch for seam allowances. Next, I baised the pieces fabric inside out directly on the seat themselves with the exception of the piece on the bottom. Then, I carefully removed it from the seat and sewed all the pieces together. Lastly, I attached the zipper to each bottom piece and attached it to the seat. Hope this wasn't too confusing.



Monday, December 27, 2010

Harry Connick Jr. - (It must've been 'ol) Santa Claus



I love Harry Connick Jr. My favorite Christmas song.

Tuesday, December 21, 2010

sewing projects







So when are you ever going to post any of your repurpose projects lady? Okay, so I've been making pillow pets and they are fun. Unfortunately, I can only make dogs. Sorry. So here's two I made.

Second, I repurposed this sweater that my mom would wear to church. It's in great condition but totally out of date. It was getting chucked so I saved it and turned it into a pillow. The pillow form brand new for $0.99. I'm giving to my friend for Christmas. If you have a bag of unique, out-of-date clothes that you don't think will sell at a Goodwill or any other thrift store...I will gladly take your goods.

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

Poppy Seed Yeast Bread

Hello bread. I came across this recipe in an old issue of Quick Cooking and since I had all the ingredients on hand and time to kill (not really). It's not sweet in the middle but I think the lemon juice/powdered sugar mixture might help. I made a lemon butter spread to help get it down. I haven't baked breads in awhile because I'm trying to stay in the 130's but I just felt like I had to try this out.

Poppy Seed Bread
3/4 cup very warm water
1/2 cup warm lemon yogurt
2 T honey
4 1/2 tsp butter, melted
2 tsp lemon extract
1 tsp salt
3 cups bread flour
4 1/2 tsp nonfat dry milk powder
2 T poppy seeds
1 T grated lemon peel
2 1/4 tsp SAF instant yeast

Combine all ingredients in a mixing with hook attachment. Blend until smooth ~5 minutes. Form into dough and allow to rest in greased bowl for 1 hour (covered). Punch down. Roll out using rolling pin and form into loaf shape. Place in greased loaf pan for 1 hour (covered). Bake at 350F for 32 minutes.

Glaze
2 T lemon juice
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Mix and drizzle over warmed bread

Lemon Butter
3 T butter, softened
1/2 cup powdered sugar
Mix until uniformed.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Snowed in

According to my son S.E., school has been terrible. Since we've been hit the mother load of snow of late, there has been no outside recess because of snow. The snow has been kind of obnoxious. It's blowing, wet, cold, with low visibility. Why go to school if you can't have recess? Where's the fun in school?! The only reason the kid loves school. Ask him anytime anyday what is his favorite part of being in kindergarten-RECESS. What an outrage! Suck it up baby boy, middle school is just around the corner. :-)

Saturday, November 27, 2010

At every important milestone in my life-any accomplishment, hard, and worthwhile in the forefront of my mind is my weight. When I was defending my thesis, I had a hard time finding a suit to fit my short and fat form. I recall going to several department stores and finally finding one-which had to be altered a lot to fit right. This is one of many, many stories. In addition, I had to stand in front of professors and other students for two hours explaining why I did the research I did and why I should be granted a masters in science degree.

When I was pregnant with both my lovely boys, I struggled to breath and move around due to my umpa lumpa form. I was really big. The pinacle of how large I got: 4' 11'' and 175 lbs. AAAGGHH. Poor feet. My feet hurt all the time throughout both pregnancies. Don't get me started on gestational diabetes. Having my children were the two most defining moments of my life. I am forever grateful to get to love these two boys. However, in my mind, I was struggling to hide how much weight I had not taken off and how I didnt' want to have my picture taken because I couldn't bear to look at how big I was.

Wedding. It was all I could do to workout twice/day for months to fit into my wedding dress. The wedding dress I found was beautiful but because of my rolls and frame, I had a difficult time finding a dress that would fit me. Again, I was scared to be the focus of attention because I was so big and in WHITE.

Fast forward to now. I am up 5 lbs. from last year and I am so scared to gain back all the weight. But like the cycle that has run throughout my life, the more scared I get, the more I mess up with my eating. That's where I'm at. I wish I could be one of those people who cuts back on the food as soon as my clothes feel tighter. I just get stressed out about how I let myself get big enough to not be able to fit into my clothes-it's just in a smaller size. I am tired of forever worrying about my weight.

I know this is a depressing and whiny post but this is where I'm at. It helps to get it out of my system.

Wednesday, November 24, 2010

I love the feel of a new pair of running shoes. I love the first night in my bed after changing sheets. I love to read. I love the first cup of coffee in the morning. I love the way I feel after a workout. I love living in this country. I love sewing machines. I love baking I love the feeling I get when anyone enjoys the food I've served.

I love the smell of my boys first thing in the morning (still warm and pliable) hugging me. I love to kiss the are from one's jawline to neck area on my boys' & husband's faces. I love the way my husband smells.

Lastly, I love everything about Thanksgiving dinner. I love the preparation, the cooking, the cleaning, the way it takes 20 minutes to devour everything you spent two days making. I love how family and friends rally together to share this wonderful meal. I love the leftovers for days.

I love it all and I hope no one is sitting about home by themselves and not having Thanksgiving. I hope anyone I know reading this who are by themselves to come over. I would love to share my abundance with you tomorrow and any other day. I am thankful. Very, very thankful.

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Thanksgiving is coming up in a couple of days and I've been cleaning, shopping, and prepping for a houseful. Well, maybe not. It has been snowing a lot in the past two days and what doesn't seem to help is there's no sign of stopping as the temperature is below freezing for the rest of the week.

AAGGHHH!! It's not about what I want, but I would like to have family around for the holidays. But right now, I'm just thankful we are safe and warm at home. I'm so thankful to not have to travel right now. Anyhow, I've been blogging M.I.A. because I've been recovering from my month-long skin problems which has made me bonkers. I've been itchy and uncomfortable in my skin for over a month now and finally this past week or so, it's subside to managable.

I hope everyone has a warm and loving place to spend Thanksgiving.

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

Koo had a friend over after school. She's a doll. While I was making gyros, the kids were playing and making forts with their blankets-or rather S.E. was making the forts. Once lunch was served, lovely husband asked Koo's friend if she liked being here and how she liked the boys. She proceeded to negotiate a trade, without missing a beat she says "I'll take S.E. and you can have my sister." When asked why? She said because S.E. builds really good forts.

With muffled laughter, lovely and I discussed how S.E. wins girls over with his nurturing and big ole eyes. I wonder why everyone says my lovely was such a sweet boy. His big ole eyes and easy disposition.

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Tamale Pie


I have not been adding enough recipes on this blog. Here's a wonderful recipe I've had since I was 21 year-old. I went to a potluck and this amazing dish was there. It was so tasty that I literally followed this delightful old lady to please give me a copy of it. She not only gave me a copy of it that night and I had feared I wouldn't get it but a week or so later, she sent it to me in the mail. I will always cherish the kindness of others who are willing to share their food and recipes. I want to grow up to be like her.


Here it is folks. It seems difficult but totally worth it.


Tamale Pie


1 to 1 1/2 lb. lean hamburger

1 cup finely chopped onion

1 cup finely chopped green pepper

1 can of petite diced tomatoes

1-12 oz. can of corn, drained

1 1/2 tsp salt

1 cup sliced black olives (divided)

1 1/2 tsp chili powder

1 tsp cumin powder

1 cup cornmeal (divided)

1 cup water

1 1/2 cup milk

1 tsp salt

2 TBSP butter

2 lightly beaten eggs

1 cup shredded cheddar cheese


Brown hamburger, onion, and pepper until hamburger is cooked. Add tomatoes, corn, salt, 1/2 of the black olives, chili powder and cumin powder. Simmer for 5 minutes.


In a small bowl, mix water and 1/2 cup cornmeal. Add to the meat mixture and simmer until cornmeal has thickened the meat mixture. Pour into a greased 9 x 13" baking pan.


In a saucepan, add milk, salt, and butter. Add 1/2 cup cornmeal. Bring slowly to a boil with constant stirring. Remove from heat once thickened and slowly add cheese and eggs. Stir to completely blend.


Pour over meat mixture and sprinkle with remaining olives. Bake at 350F for 30 minutes. Serve.
Feeling better today. Got five hours of uninterrupted sleep and am feeling like a million dollars today. I'm pretty grateful for my lovely husband and my kids. Thank you God for giving me three reasons to not sit around and have a serious pity party. Sometimes I look at my family and I can't believe God let me have them. Truly the best gifts I've ever. I'm looking outside myself and I'm going to soak in the deliciousness that are my boys and try to make my lovely's life wonderful today because he's pretty terrific to me.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Where I'm at...

What does being healthy mean?
This question was posed in a weight loss blog I was reading and I have been thinking about this because I think I've been losing my fight with the scale as of late. So I decided I would ponder about what being healthy means to me because that's why I got my act together almost two years ago to lose 30 lbs.

Since words are failing me at this moment, how about what does healthy look like? To me it looks like someone like Halle Berry. I'm no Halle Berry but I think she's not too thin or too muscular. She has a woman's body and when she bends over, her stomach doesn't have any rolls. There it is. The stomach rolls. I have them even though I weigh 25 lbs less than when I started (I have gained 5 lbs. in the last two months...even with running a marathon). I don't how I feel in clothes so I don't feel healthy. I feel like I'm a copycat. a fraud. I'm still in my fat state of mind.

Back to the question. Being healthy to me means not being out of breath due to physical exertion. Being healthy to me means not overeating. Being healthy to me means no Jelly Belly belly. Being healthy is doing the work to maintain a healthy lifestyle (exercise, rest, eat clean and lean). Right now, I barely push myself during my workouts, eat unhealthy foods everyday, and eat too much. I can't seem to stop myself. I need to respect myself enough to not eat garbage. I'm having myself a huge pity-party.

So, how do I get myself back on track? Keep working out even if I don't feel like it. Drink water. Stop eating before my stomach hurts. And give myself a break.
I have the worst insomnia. I can't get comfortable. My bed is too hot. The couch gets old. I toss and turn and I'm looking like hell. I have bags under my eyes and my eating is horrible. Yes, pets' heads are falling off today and I don't have a clue how to fix it. Tomorrow I've got an appointment with my allergist.

It seems I've written about this topic over and over again but in addition to my allergies, I abhor this time of year. Everything is changing too fast and it's too dark too soon. I'm going to stop writing so I don't have to subject you to my *!^$#*ing and moaning. Take care all and hope you have a better day than me.

Thursday, October 28, 2010

The Boys First Quilt







Today was another gloomy day where I was once again queasy and my lower back was cramped up for no apparent reason. So, it was looking like a long, long day trying to keep the boys occupied without playing the Wii or watching TV.

What to do? What to do? How about help the boys make an easy quilt? Yeah. I popped three Advils and took out my iron and huge stash of garage sale cotton fabric. Armed with my "new" $5 Euro Pro sewing machine (it's the only one slow enough for the boys to use) and this baby quilt pattern from http://www.neverenoughhours.blogspot.com/ , we made this fun quilt. The boys sew all the pieces together (I cut and ironed for them). They got this done in about one hour. Tonight I will finished the backing since their little fingers had a hard enough time hold two pieces of fabric together.



Wednesday, October 27, 2010

Peanut Butter Pie...

So, why does one make lean turkey chili and eat a decent portion size? To be able to eat this. Really, I'm not doing anyone favors by printing this recipe down because it's so good and easy, you'll have it inhaled before it can even set. But oh well...I like to share my discoveries and have been quite selfish about sharing recipes via blogsville. Something about me and peanut butter-I really don't care if I don't have it. I don't go ga-ga over the stuff-but this pie...dear me my I've changed my tune.

3/4 cup creamy peanut butter
4 oz. cream cheese (I used light)
1 cup powdered/confectioners' sugar
1- 8 oz. carton frozen whipped topping, thawed
1 graham cracker crust (I bet it would be even more irresistable with chocolate crust)
1/4 cup salted chopped peanuts

In a large bowl, beat the peanut butter, cream cheese, and sugar until smooth. Fold in whipped topping. Pour into prepared crust. Sprinkle with nuts. Chill until serving. Refrigerate leftovers (as if there'd be any left).

You've been warned.

Sick

I am finally over whatever was making me nauseous and lethargic. I just can't imagine how some feel this way all the time due to ear problems or upset stomach. I had vertigo for the first time in my life two years ago and I thought I was going to jump out of my body. Thank goodness the fix was just an over the counter drug. Another reason to be thankful for living in a country where I can go out and buy medicine that would help this. The only side effect was I was very, very sleepy. Now that I feel better, I can go and workout. My body definitely needs it.

Monday, October 25, 2010

Homemaker Ramblings

My job description on any application is Homemaker. I feel pride in this title. I have three bosses. Two assistant managers S.E. and Koo. One big boss Lovely Hubby. I get paid in hugs and kisses and the freedom to pretty much make my own schedule. What I've learned being a homemaker that maybe useful to others thinking of doing the same.

1) Don't forget to find time for yourself(for me it's exercise, reading, and sewing). One hour, squeeze it in. When I was new to this job, I felt guilty when I would take a break and felt like I was cheating my family for not being there. But, my health suffered and I was really short with the kids because I felt overwhelmed.

2) Be thrifty as much as possible because kids are expensive and I'm not just talkin' diapers. Everything is temporary except for the relationship you develop with your kids.

3) Don't forget to spend time with your love-the man who made it possible for you to stay home. Taking care and talking about the kids is not meeting all his needs. I'm only starting to be better at this. Date night. Budget it in.

4) Get a tough skin against negative/well-intentioned busybodies (like myself) on how you should raise your kids. You know what's best for them. Trust yourself. Even if what's best for them is uncomfortable for you.

5) Get up and get yourself ready like you would go to work. When you feel better and look better, life's just a little bit more manageable.

6) Your kids and hubby never get tired of hugs and kisses...really. I'm not a real touchy feely person and it was hard in the beginning to do this but now, I stop and just kiss them and hug them. Even if I spend most of my day with them.

Okay, so it might not be so helpful but I guess I needed the reminding.
Windy, windy weather. I know I don't have a thing to complain about regarding the weather because where I live, it's pretty cool for the most part. The only thing I detest is cold sideways rain brought on my heavy winds. The wind in these parts are out-of-control strong. Two years ago, 80 mile/hour winds blew down our Costco shed. Blew the top off. This probably wouldn't have happened if we had locked it. The wind pushed the doors open and voila the wind came in and in a matter of minutes took the top off.

Today is so windy, I am almost thankful my kids have this week off of school because I don't want to leave the house. The boys are playing I Spy and buliding houses with tape and construction paper. I cleaned my cupboards in my kitchen and rotated food. Hopefully, I'll get to sew for pleasure and go running at the gym.

Friday, October 22, 2010

My mom and dad are coming for a visit. Along with them, my younger sister and her three boys are coming too. I'll have a house full and am excited. In the past (about three years ago), I would fret and clean for a week straight before guests come. Now, I just walk around with a vacuum and suck up any dust, crumbs, or junk around the house. In addition, just making sure their beds are cleaned and made up and bathrooms sanitized. Along with a stocked fridge it took me almost two hours. So much happier with minimal cleaning and grooming. It gets dirty while they are here anyway. Why go to all the bother? I would rather save my energy and play with my nephews. Hopefully, if the weather permits, we will be swimming, walking to the park, and go to a corn maze. Should burn some energy out.

Thursday, October 21, 2010

I was thinking about what I would like my life to be like when I'm old. I mean grey-hair old. Given I reach this age range, I would like to be as it is now: being close to my boys, kissing my husband, and to be able to be able to have many people I love and care about near me. I hope to continue to be a good friend, wife, and most importantly mother (and grandmother I hope). I want to be the kind of grandma that attends all important and non-important functions of my grandkids. I hope my boys marry women who will allow me to overstep their personal space and can look at me wanting to spend as much time with them as possible-okay. I hope to be here long enough to see my boys turn to men. I don't know why I'm so sappy today. I guess I blinked and my boys are bigger, more independent and just too big for a lack of a better word. I've always said they are the sun and moon for me. May I always wake up and go to bed with both being present in my day.

Monday, October 18, 2010

Zumba

Zumba. Love Zumba. Equal to running, I love zumba. It's a hip-hop/salsa dance class and you dance for one hour straight. My arms are flinging. My pelvis is swinging and thrusting. I don't care if I look like I'm having a seizure. I just know my heart is in pure happy-mode in that hour I am dancing. My trainer thinks I should train so I can get lean and be in a rapper's video. The hot babes that dance around them. Yeah no. With Zumba and a full attire, I at least can dance better and have pure enjoyment in doing something that makes my heart laugh. Everyone needs to try Zumba. If nothing else, learn one move and show your husband. It's bound to make nightime rituals more entertaining.
My skin is looking better again and I'm healthy. In addition, my boys have been staying healthy and happy. My lovely husband has been having a lot of sinus issues for the past year or so and finally, he's doing a little better. Really can't complain about life. It's been really good to me and I wanted to take a moment to lament this because I don't want to take what I have for granted.

Thursday, October 14, 2010

Dear skin,
Please don't itch. Please stop breaking out in little hives. Please. Please. I know you didn't like it when I messed with raspberries and other berries and pitched a huge fit all over my body. I won't eat any fruit and will try to not be depressed over the extra pound or two I gained due to it. Not an apple. Not a banana. Nothing. Promise. Just let me heal. I'm tired of scratching all night long. I'm tired. Please.

Yours forever,
Me

Car talk

"Mom, do you think Koo and I will ever meet the real Santa or do mommies just go out and buy presents?" -S.E.

"Why do you ask S.E.?" -Me

"Well, I was thinking he's very busy trying to remember the little good kids and he might not have time to get it all done." -S.E.

Such big, big dilemma for a six-year old.

Opposites

Two boys. Came out of the same two sets of genes. But so different. S.E. is mild-mannered and clean. I mean the kid eats clean, plays clean, can go through a rough and tumble play in the woods and come out...well clean. This is the kid you want to get hand-me-downs from. His hands don't get sticky unnecessarily, his blanket and other personal toys are clean and in great shape considering wear and tear. The bottom of his white socks-stays white. And his shoes. No smell. None. Now, the thing about a clean and orderly kid is he is easily grossed out by sticky, itcky, smelly stuff. Enter Koo.

Koo on the other hand, is either happy or sad in a matter of three seconds flat. After he outgrows shirts and pants, they go the garbage pile. Stains. Check. Holes. Check. Unraveling of seams. Check. His place at the table after he's done eating is usually sticky and wet. If we are walking in a field, Koo will find the one poo pile left by dogs and step in it. I've have used sticks, water, soap, and paper towel combination many times to remove caked-on poo underneath shoes. Sometimes, I just give up and chuck the shoes. If there's stuck-on gum anywhere, he'll be digging it up to show me. What I love about him is he does all this and more whole-heartedly. He's more likely to go with the flow.

Two boys. Came out of same belly. Oh, so opposite. Both are the sun and moon for me. Thank goodness for opposites. If I had only one type I would not be as open-minded about how unique and special children are. The best lesson I've witness is tolerance for differences. The boys have had to adjust and accept each other's habits and try to make the best of the situation.

Monday, October 11, 2010

Thankfulness

I was remissed in mentioning all the hardwork of others around me and the sacrifice they've had to make so I could run. First and foremost, my lovely husband. Seriously, he has been patient and very supportive of me taking time out to train, bring me food, take care of the boys even when he wasn't feeling well, and to just have more faith in my ability than I had.

Next, my friends (and the boys surrogate aunt & uncle) Tia and Tio for taking my boys on a journey to Portland this past weekend so I could just focus on the race. My boys had an absolute fantastic time and they are ready to go next year. I'm not sure I can take another two straight days without my kids being an hour or so near. I will admit I had to look at a lot of pictures of them and called them way too many times during their time away but I missed their spirit in our home. Lovely and I spoke of how quiet it was around the house without them-and clean.

To my friends and trainers who only spoke of encouraging words and to support me when I believed I couldn't possible run a marathon. Also this may sound cheesy but whenever I was running a long run, I would think as I'm running along by myself, that I was actually being carried by God.

Now, this marathon didn't define me, what it did was a symbol of how strong I am to do something I never thought I could do. Whatever your "marathon" moment is, I hope this blog finds someone whose looking for that extra encouragement to push yourself.

Not bad for an overweight, pre-diabetic mom who two years ago couldn't make it through the day without taking six Advils just to do normal tasks.

Sunday, October 10, 2010

10-10-10 marathon.

My husband heard a saying "If you don't do something outside your comfort zone, you won't grow". Well, I was uncomfortable to say the least today. I ran my very first marathon. Full. I did it. I was scared. I hurt. It was extraordinary. I pushed my self to run straight for 5 hours and 18 minutes. No walking. No crazy speed. Slow and steady and I did it. Me. Former fat kid picked last in any sports-taking over 30 minutes to just run 1 mile. Like being pregnant, given enough time, I maybe could be talked into doing it again.

I had a great support team of friends and family saying I could do it and to my friend Ro for driving and just being a security blanket on race day in case I needed help. Last but not least, to my friend Mr. Beefcake for not only telling me I could do this but helped me train for this run. On top of it, he ran it too.

So what did I learn? Even when you want to give up-stick to your commitment and have the courage to do it-even when you are afraid to.

Monday, October 4, 2010

Priorities

I've been off-kiltered with my priorities lately. I am a stay-at-home MOM. But lately, I've been getting short with the kids and not having time to do things like read to them, wrestle with them, volunteer in their classrooms (like I've always wished my mom could do when I was little and scared to be in a school not understanding much English). I find I'm short with them, not really helping or asking them about their schoolwork or show much interest when I drop them off at school.
Also, I have not made time for studying the Bible and continuing my relationship with God. I mean a deliberate relationship with him. I'm finding that I when I'm helping the kids with their verses, I just want them to memorize them-not explain what those verses mean. Something has to give.

So I am halting my alterations-on-the-side job. I don't make enough for the time I spend on stuff and I'll pick it up again once both boys are in school for more than two hours. I thought I could do this but I'm finding that any extra "free" time at home is spent working on fixing clothes for others. While I enjoy this, I love my boys so much I don't want to miss what it means to be a mom whose job is to help raise well-rounded boys and to stare at my husband for more than 10 seconds without wondering if I can sneak a moment downstairs to work. He works hard enough for us...So, I'm finishing up the last of my obligations and I'm done. Only for pleasure and for fun. I hope you all understand. My boys won't stop growing-they need my full attention.

Sunday, October 3, 2010

Rice and Beans


AAAHHHH. I got home from church this morning to find these two tupperware filled with hot and yummy rice and beans. These are not your typical rice and beans. These are made by my Peruvian friend Tia P. She does amazing things to beans. I was never a big fan of beans-until I ate hers. Oh goodness. She was over last night and I told her I was craving her beans and asked if I gave her some Peruvian white beans could she make me some? Well...I am in heaven. So delicious. She is my favorite cook. She is not shy about using herbs and spices to turn up the flavor profile to "off-the-charts" goodness. I have to go now and pig out on rices and beans. Sorry hubby about the kickback tonight.

Saturday, October 2, 2010

26.2 miles on 10/10/10

Really. I'm actually going to do this. I think I've been in denial for awhile but I'm doing it. I may have to walk some of it but I'll go until I can'ts go no more. There's a lot of run around the country on this particular date but the one I'm going to is only an hour away in the nearest big city but I think the "cool" one is in Portland, OR. I'm hoping the one I will do will not be as crowded and I can drive home without sitting in a car for 6 hours. Wish me luck. I'm scared but like childbirth and public speaking, it's satisfying once accomplished. May God carry me when I am unable to carry myself. I won't be alone.

Tuesday, September 28, 2010

Fanny Pack

I ran 15.5 miles. How? Why? What was I thinking? I am two weeks out until my marathon and I finally did a long run by myself. I did this in 3 hours and 21 minutes. Not the best time but I kept on trucking along. I didn't hurt too bad and was able to drink water, eat electrolytes gels, bananas, and almonds. All made possible because of my fanny pack and family. My husband and kids drove out to the turnaround point and dropped off one banana and another one near the end of my run. I was elated and very tired. However, I had very minimal soreness because I drank a lot of water, stretched, and rested afterwards. I also ate a small peanut butter sandwich within 30 minutes of finishing along with 1/2 cup milk. I am scared and nervous for the marathon but I am doing it anyway. This is the same feelings I have when I defended my thesis and when I was in my eighth month of pregnancies. Very scared but prepared.

Saturday, September 18, 2010

Boys

My boys love biscuits and gravy. All three of them. Just made a fresh, homemade batch and the boys are screaming with excitement. The boys are at such a fun age and I feel a tinge of sadness because they are so independent and imaginative...so boy. They have spent a lot of time with their cousins this summer and have really gotten stronger as brothers because they've had only each other while lovely husband and I went on a little couple's getaway to Seaside, OR.

They love to practice play sparing, attack aliens that want to come and take over the toyroom, make paper airplanes, catch worms, grasshoppers, and catapillars. Pray they don't bring home a snake for me.

Lastly, they are continuing AWANA-which they absolutely LOVE! I love theys two boys so much and am grateful for every hug, every smile, cry, and laughter in my presence. It just goes too fast.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

I've been swamped. Totally swamped. Life's been chaotic with kids' schedules, doctor's appointments, traveling to see family, sewing, and trying to stay in shape. I'm not doing a good job of juggling. Things are starting to fall through the cracks...like this blog. I don't like this feeling like there's a lot of "stuff" hanging over me. I feel cranky when this happens and it's time to refocus on what's important: God, family, and health. I haven't been on my knees enough to give thanks and praise to God. Prioritize, prioritize...wish me luck.

Friday, September 3, 2010

Grandpa Bob

This morning, my lovely husband's paternal grandfather passed away. He was 85 years old. He was a kick and always voiced what was on his mind. When we visited him a week ago, I had a very nice long talk with him and telling me a lot of stories of when he was a young Navy soldier. It was very nice. One of my favorite mental pictures of him was when I asked Koo to sing to him and he did-boy the smile that came across Grandpa Bob's face was priceless. I'm glad in all his physical pain, he was able to find the strength to smile. I hope he is smiling again that he's with God.

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

Update

Where have I been? Why haven't I blogged? I've been dealing with treatment for my health and trying to keep my family healthy and happy that I've not been able to sit down to figure out what would help me serve my family, friends, and me better.

Here's the lowdown of the summer: lots of visiting family, my maternal grandmother passing's, two weddings, 20-year high school reunion, and most recent, my lovely husband's paternal grandfather is very, very ill.

Now here's the part that I'm most baffled by-I have not been inspired to run for hours. I don't know if it's because my good-for-my-skin diet has totally wiped out all the foods I love or I'm just not in a good groove. Add to that, my feet have been hurting-a lot so when I run, I've been overcompensating and so my knees have started to hurt. I'm trying not to panic as I write this.

The break I've given myself and believe me it took a lot of thinking, I will only run in the half-marathon instead of a full marathon. I'm just not ready and mentally and physically, I'm not as fit as I was in the spring. I don't know why I've lost my way...but I'm just going to run for running sake instead of trying to meet miles and time. I want to enjoy running again. I want to still run a full marathon...just not next month.

Friday, August 6, 2010

car talk

"Mom, can we have a chimney?" -Koo

"Why honey?" -me

"So Santa can bring our gifts to us." -Koo

"No Koo, he comes through our door." -S.E.

"No, S.E., he comes through our vents." -Koo

"Wow Koo, how do you know what vents are?" -me

"Dad gets mad when I put things down the vents." -Koo

"So, Koo you're saying Santa turns to dust to deliver presents? That doesn't make sense Koo." -S.E.

And off we continue to go to one of our favorite thrift stores.
I'm doing it. I've been following this man's blog www.imjustwalkin.com for several months. He has been walking since March from Rockaway Beach, NY to Rockaway Beach, OR (one of my favorite places in the world). Well. He is about 30 miles from PULLMAN right now. I am going to back some cookies, gather some sundries, water and pack my family into the car and will bring him some food and cheer. Why?! Because if he can walk across the United States from I can run 26.2 miles in one day. Very inspirational. I highly recommend you checking out his blog.

Tuesday, August 3, 2010

Things to do with the kids

Puzzles. We love them. Not the 1000 piece puzzles-too much commitment for 4 and 6 year olds. No. The 300 to 500 pieces that take about 2 days. Kids have fun. I have fun. We all have fun.

Oh yeah. I taught them to play Uno. They plotted against me and both ended up winning. So much fun to see the boys work together and be each other's friend instead of trying to plot against each other. Can we say we are phasing out of "that phase"? I hope so. Besties for life is what I tell them about each other.

Oh, and I should have pictures of them up but I'm so swamped with sewing projects-you'll just have to stop by for a visit.

Friday, July 30, 2010

Ba Ngoai

My maternal grandmother died on Monday and I have mixed feelings about this. I love and miss her and will always be grateful for having her in my life. She was in her nineties and have not been in her "right" mind the past few years.

She was one of my favorite in my heart. She was a very brave woman. She never learned how read or write but she was a very hard worker and did what she had to in order to raise her eight children. Back in the day when women didn't strike out on their own and were dependent on my grandfather, she did the best she could. I am so grateful to be where I am and not forget that learning to read and write is a privilege because of her. She would tell me stories of her life and regrets when I was around twelve so I didn't get a chance to ask her questions that linger now.

I miss her but what's hard is to see my mom miss her mommy.

Where's the Ramblin' On lady?

I'm back. We went on our annual weeklong trek "camping" at Lake Chelan. Have you ever been? The most beautiful lake I've seen to date. It's the best of the three C's of lakes for me: clean, clear, and cold. It's such a nice tradition to meet up with my husband's family and just relax, get a tan, and watch the kids explore and play in the water. Every year it gets better. I'm am thankful to have an opportunity to have this experience.

Thursday, July 15, 2010

What I did before kids...

I don't know if I ever mentioned what I did before I had kids. I've got a Master's Degree in Food Science. No, not nutrition. Food Science mainly focuses in three areas: food quality, food safety, and my favorite research of new and novel foods. I have worked in a spice company where I got to mix up herbs and spices to make specialized blends for customers such as Taco Time and Jack in the Box. Then I worked for Safeway Ice Cream and Milk division. Fun but fattening. I had to monitor and test the quality of ice cream and milk products coming off the production line to ensure that the products meet specifications and safety standards. All the ice cream I could eat was not a good thing after being there two months and gaining about 5 lbs.

Then, after college, I worked for a local Northwest flour company which made dry mixes of pancakes, brownies, cookies, and breads. I had to test new ingredients to see how they worked in existing products and make sure all raw materials going into the dry mixes still stood the test of shelf-life. And right before I started cranking out babies, I worked for the USDA in their wheat quality division. We tested wheat varieties for the Northwest taking it from milling all the way to the end product (breads, cookies, and cakes). Lots of lab testing and baking. Ultimately, the goal was to find wheat varieties which farmers can plant and get the perfect combination of high yield whiling making great cookies, noodles, or breads.

Funny how no one asks me what I did before kids...

Wednesday, July 7, 2010

Heaven

"Mom, when we go up to heaven, do we lose our skins and get new ones and come back down here again?" -Koo

"No, we get to stay up there with God." -Mom

"But what if we fall down?" -Koo

"I think once we are up there, we get to stay there." -Mom

"But I will miss my house mommy." -Koo
I've been waking up dreading working out. What?! What?! I love to workout. I'm not sure what's going on other than my diet has been so weird with trying to fix my skin problem that I am not as motivated to workout. I was suppose to run 5 miles today and I only ran 3.5 miles. Oh well, at least I did it I guess. I'm not sure how I'm going to run 26.2 miles in October.

Monday, July 5, 2010

4th of July

I love this country. I'm so grateful to be able to walk around, think my own thoughts, and raise my kids the way I feel is best without fear of being put away or death. Thank you to all the brave warriors who've made it possible for me to have this freedom. Coming from another country, I understand how differently my life could have been. I would not have all the opportunities I've had with being in this country. I am an American citizen for many years and I'm very proud to do my part to help not be a burden to the country that has embraced me and be a productive citizen. Everytime I watch the fireworks and hear the music, I just get choked up.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

I am still trying to get my house in order after our big trip and am planning our annual 4th of July bash. The boys have been getting along really well and we had a playdate yesterday for Koo. This is the first time where Koo has a friend over while S.E. was around. She was a lovely little girl and she got along well with both boys. They really enjoyed taking turns playing with her. Koo was very attentive and loved it. I'm happy for him because up until now, Koo has been the third wheel to S.E.'s playdates.

Tuesday, June 29, 2010

I am amazed at how wonderful men can be. I was cleaning up after dinner and my lovely husband and his bestfriend were downstairs discussing the yard and how they tend to depended on how the wives like it. This was after they installed my new front loader washer and dryer. So when I get frustrated about the little things, I've got to remember how much they do for us.
I'm back. 7 1/2 hours of driving. Boys were great. Husband drove the entire way (thanks lovely). Broken washer. UUGGGHHH!!!

Wednesday, June 23, 2010

What's up with the ramblin' on lady?

No kids. No hubby. Not even home. For one week. I'm back at my folks' home learning how to properly make professional curtains, upholster cushions, pillows, etc. And the quality time with my parents, siblings, and nieces and nephews. I've seen Toy Story 3 twice with different kids. LOVE IT. Also, I've got a fair amount of shopping in without interruptions and while it's been wonderful, my duffle bag is bulging so it's time to slow down. I've been able to take a total body bootcamp. Wonderful workouts. I'm enjoying my "vacation" but I am missing my husband and children. Oh, where are they you wonder? My kids are at my sister-in-law's (bless her soul) and my lovely is at home working and doing whatever he wants-probably taking apart some electronic device.

Wednesday, June 16, 2010

You Tube?

I have recently discovered You Tube. How country am I? I have been getting great advice on sewing and re-discovering my youth by watching old 80's music videos. Remember when MTV had music in it?

Boys Update

The boys are in vacation Bible school and are loving it. I think the boys like the time apart because they have been enjoying each other in the afternoons. I'm going to have to go to my experienced moms for advice regarding how to get kids to get along better. I know ultimately it lies on my shoulders if their lives go awry and they don't get along as adults. I'm hopeful today because I know there's a lot of other humans they can connect with.

As for Bible school, the boys have been calling a man "Dude". We were reading stories from their Bibles (given to them by the church) and they were telling me where "Dude" wants them to read. Had I not attended on Tuesday, I would have been confused. Well, they are enjoying it and getting up each day this week and going through the motions without much fuss. Now, if only I can get me to not fuss at them.

My goal is to try to go from Nagger-Drill Sergeant to Loving Mommy again. It's just too important.

Sunday, June 13, 2010

My Love's Birthday




Happy Birthday to my lovely husband. He turns 36 today (yes that's 2 1/2 years younger than me). He truly is my better half. I know I couldn't stay home with our kids without his hardwork and dedication to our family. In addition, he has so much more patience than anyone I know. He loves to cuddle, sing and dance to silly songs, re-wire, re-plumb, and teach a friend how to change his oil (that's what he has done just this week). Also, he loves with great generosity. Happy Birthday to my lovely husband.

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Cow Creek Race


Before and after the race.

The boys and I participated in a 2 mile fun run in a neighboring town's community days. The weather was perfect-sunny with a slight breeze. This is S.E. and Koo's first race. S.E. completed the entire race with half running and walking with a potty break along the weeds 1.5 miles into it. Koo started at the beginning at his bullet pace but burnt out early and by 0.5 mile, he was ready to stop all together. Thank goodness, lovely husband was on the sidelines to get him. We finished the run in 28 minutes.
In addition to the race, there was a classic car show so my lovely could check out the cars while he waited for us. All in all, a wonderful time and I think I have ignited the running bug into S.E. He is so excited to run another race but I think we will have to have more training. In ending, I just want to express how grateful I feel to be able to raise my boys in an environment where they are excited to go out and exercise. S.E. asked if there was a prize for running and I said "Yes, you get to make your body happy".

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Stealing

Is it considered stealing if you take an apparatus which your trainer really likes to make you hang from and do leg pull-ups? There are other ways to work your core. It's unnatural, painful, and I really look like a dork hanging off of it. Worse when trainer has to lift you up because you can't hang on to your own weight. It would be kind to rid the gym of this orture device don't you think? Really, I'd be doing everyone a favor. Only I did mention this to my trainer so he would know who the culprit was if this theft were to occur.

Tuesday, June 8, 2010

While I was home in the 'burbs of Seattle, I ran a long and steep hill which led up to my parents home. I had never ran up this hill in all the years I've lived over there because of its' steepness. I ran this hill at the end of my 5 mile run and felt great. Loved it. Another benefit to living where I do now, because there's hills everywhere. You can't run outside and avoid a hill.

Yesterday, I ran down to the gym and lifted weights for one hour and ran home. I'm tired and sore today. I hope I'll be able to get another nice workout in today.

Monday, June 7, 2010

We just returned from Seattle to visit family. It was to celebrate my mom's 60th birthday. She is an amazing and generous woman. She's a spunky lady. All of my siblings with the exception of my baby sister's famiy came to the party and my boys were in cousin heaven. Between us five siblings, there are eleven grandchildren. They all adore my mom. She's got a pretty special bond with each grandchild. I hardly saw my kids this weekend because they were running around with their cousins. They got to spend the night both nights with my younger sister. She has three of the most juicy and lovely boys. I remember those days when I got to see my cousins. I would post pictures and talk more about them but don't out of respect for their privacy.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

I was informed by my lovely husband that I did not scratch during the night. YEAH!!! I am on a low nickel diet and I am finding myself not being as itchy. In addition, I went to a nurse/chiropractor/acupunture/nutritionist yesterday and I was very excited because she is certain she can help my skin. She believes in working from the inside out and she has help at least two people I know, recover from their contact dermatitis. I'm not putting all my cards in one basket but with her help in addition to my eliminating foods which trigger my skin flare-ups, I believe my skin can get better. I'm staying positive and my remind myself that "I am not by body" and "don't eat your problems away". It helps calm me and when I get anxious, I just sit down and relax. Hopefully, I am on the mend.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

6th year to me!!







When S.E. was born, so was my new job title: SAHM. It's been six years of crying, cleaning up bottoms (still doing this), laughing, and getting to see the two most beautiful human beings in the whole world to me grow. I got to witness it all. Things I still love about my job: holding warm boys when they wake up from their naps, eating with gusto, learning to ride their trikes, bikes, and swim. Also, when they thank me without me prompting them or when they come up behind me to hug me-I love it all. Even when they drive me to bake something with two sticks of butter and gobble half up it up before it cools, this is still the best job.

Thursday, May 27, 2010

It has come to my attention that I have do not have the updated version of parenting. My kids are six and four now and I still parent like they are toddlers. I parent with the fear that my kids will get hurt either by each other. I'm tend to yell, put them in timeouts, and still bank on them taking naps in order to rescrew my head back on. Lately, I'm finding that I have to explain to them consequences of their actions, and naps are hit or miss. This leads to tired and worned out mom with little patience to do anything fun with them. Good thing my lovely husband is patient and likes to explain everything to the boys in depth.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

Foods with High Nickel Content

shellfish (shrimp, oysters, mussels)
salmon
all canned vegetables and fruits
beans (green, brown, and white)
sprouts
kale
leeks
lettuce
peas (including split peas)
spinach
fresh and dried figs
pinapple
prunes
raspberry
buckwheat
millet
oatmeal
wheat bran products (whioe wheat breads and cereals)
multigrain breads
chocolate and cocoa drinks
tea from dispensers
nuts (almonds, hazelnuts, peanuts, sunflower seeds)
sweets containing chocolate
marzipan
licorice
baking powder
lentils
linseed
soy powder
vitamin / mineral supplements containing nickel
fiber tablets

Nickel allergy

I'm overwhelmed with all the information I am gathering regarding my nickel allergy. I've been decent in avoiding foods on the list my doctor had given me and staying away from chemicals I'm allergic to. However, during this last doctor's appointment, the doctor opened my eyes to the fact that while they are good at identifying the problem, they do not have a good solution other than treating the symptoms temporarily. He did stress the fact that most people with nickel allergy have an extremely difficult time in avoiding nickel.
So armed with time, panic, and high-speed internet, I have been searching nickel allergy. I have found foods on sites that are not on my list. Much to my horror, most of the foods I eat to help maintain my weightloss are on the list: beans, all canned fruits and vegetables, shellfish, all nuts, whole grains and the kicker BAKING POWDER. I bake all the time!!
So, while I choke down oatmeal each morning, I'm starting my day off with nickel. As, I eat a few almonds to stave off my hunger, I'm eating nickel. As I bake everything, I'm eating nickel. Like I said, I'm overwhelmed.
I'm trying to find the bright side. At least I found out what I can avoid to help my skin. I'm going to embark on this elimination diet and hope to high heavens I get some relief for my itchy, painful, hideous-looking sores all over skin.

Tuesday, May 25, 2010

I'm still baffled by this blog. I'm a horrible communicator and I have no rhyme or reason to when I feel up to blogging. Maybe it's just because I'm feeling overwhelmed with my health, feelings of being an inadequate mother, and my relationship with my husband. I just want to eat a whole chocolate cake but wait, I'm allergic to chocolate. Really, any reason to get up in the morning?

Sunday, May 23, 2010

I feel terrible. Very queasy, dizzy, and really want to upchuck. I started an antibiotic and I'm having an allergic reaction to it. Husband is out of town. One of my bestfriends took the boys for a few hours today so I can just veg without feeling guilty. I turned on the TV. It's a Hoarders marathon on A & E. I've watched three episodes so far. There has been someone from Washington in all three. Is it just me or is Washington becoming the Hoarders capital? I remember seeing an Oprah show many years ago on this topic and a lady featured was from Washington. I hope I feel better soon because I'm twitching to clear out my house.

black thumb


My boys and hubby love growing plants and gardening. Not my calling. I know what to do with the postharvest fruits and vegetables from gardens but I am not a fan in having one. My men don't feel the same way and they've got three plants they are trying to get ready to either go outside (corn and sweetpea) or take up permanent residence somewhere in our home. I hope I don't kill them before then. I'm not good at gardening...at all. Very bad.

Monday, May 17, 2010

Create, create, things I make




Koo was learning about the life cycle of butterflies and they read stories, raised a butterfly from the larvae, caterpillar, etc. phases. Lots of fun. He loved it and I thought I'd thank his teacher by making her this book bag. The print is from the book The Very Hungry Caterpillar by Eric Carle.

Friday, May 14, 2010

S.E. turned 6!!!







Yesterday was a wonderful day with the celebration of S.E.'s birthday. I am so proud to know him. He is a darling boy-very thoughtful, always ready to tell a story (especially if it involves getting Koo in trouble), tries very hard to learn to whistle, make bubblegum bubbles, head stands, swim by himself. I'm just so darn thankful to be his mama.

Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Update on me

Why am I so good a focusing on what I do wrong and beat myself up for it but see only good in others? Frickin' crazy mama here. I've been eating too many calories and fat and I'm not being accountable to myself. But I could be much worse. Why do I beat myself up for the extra little bit and not congratulate myself on the stuff I say "No" to? I'm slipping into some old bad habits like cooking to avoid doing things I don't want to do or to relax. Also, I've been really, really tired. I can't seem to get enough sleep and when I do sleep, I sleep like the dead. No answers today. Just having a moment.

Sunday, May 9, 2010

Mother's Day

I had a perfect Mother's day. It was just another regular Sunday but it was sunny!!! I was able to run for 9 miles while my lovely husband played with the kids. I hate getting presents for the sake of a day made up by someone to give some group a reason to feel special? I don't know. I feel pretty special already being a wife to an awesome husband and the mom of two delicious little boys.

I love how God works in my life. Sometimes I don't want to be a mom. I remember life before kids and sometimes I crave that especially when I'm cleaning up around a toilet or wipe up spilled food and milk. Then I remember how important my job is and that being a mom is not a right but a privilege.

There are women without kids and kids without moms in this world anymore. So what did I do to honor them and show my gratitude for God trusting me to take care of two wonderful boys and to share this journey of raising them with my husband, their dad. I was lucky enough to get to share my "day" with a special lady and her fiance (she's like a daughter to me) and one of my bestfriend P and her husband. I made dinner and got to enjoy my family and friends. Truly a wonderful day.

Friday, May 7, 2010

running update

I finally made the commitment to get a new watch. Why? My current watch that I hardly wear is a nice watch but it's heavy and does not have a stopwatch option. So, when I'm running with the old watch on, it rubs and slides all over my wrist-very bothersome. This new one is easy to operate. Love it. Last night, I ran my 3 mile route. When I first starting running this route and it was my long run-I would run it in 50 minutes. I now run it in 32 minutes (almost one mile of it is a killer hill). I'm so happy with how much faster I've gotten.
I am grateful to my husband the most because he has been so supportive of my new lifestyle. He cheers me on, looks after the kids so I can run, and understands when I have to invest money so trainers can make me walk like an old woman for days (I am so sore right now). There's been many angels helping me achieve this kind of progress-thank you.

Wednesday, May 5, 2010

Monday's workout was total body bootcamp and 1 mile run.
Tuesday morning, I ran hills for 30 minutes: 8 incline 5.0 speed, 9 incline 4.5, 10 incline 4.0 for 10 minutes each. Then ran sides & reverse and 7.0 speed for a total of 43 minutes.
Wednesday, 45 minutes of hard total body bootcamp. I'm sore. Ate yogurt and stretched really well. I'm trying to stay focus and really try to get the weight down so I can run faster.

Monday, May 3, 2010

Bloomsday 2010

Last year was the first time I ran Bloomsday and I did it in 1:28 minutes. This year, I did it in 1:18 minutes (with a 2 minute standing in line for the bathroom at mile 2). I'm proud of myself for how much stronger of a runner I've become.

Friday, April 30, 2010

Rodney Yee

S.E. and I did an hour of yoga at home yesterday. It was awesome. New respect for Mr. Rodney Yee. It was called Power Yoga: Total Body with Rodney Yee. I do not have a lot of experience with yoga because all the other videos I've ever done has been slow. This one was a quicker pace and I was able to follow along without wanting to take a nap. What was impressive was S.E. was really good at yoga. He loved it and we can't wait to do it again. Here's S.E.'s comments during the session:
"Mom, why is that man on a mountain by himself?"
"I like the music"
"Why does that man not have a shirt on?"
After doing warrior pose three (balance on one leg forming a T)..."Mom, I hope he doesn't make us do warrior five pose". Note: each warrior pose was harder than the previous. Whew. Warrior three was it. Fun.

Sunday, April 25, 2010

long run day...no...make that a short run

I ran 4 miles this morning and I've got an ache in my left ankle that caused me to turn home. I hope this is not something that will continue to bother me.

Springfest

What I love about living in a university town is all the events that are available to the public. One such was the Springfest carnival. This event had three large rides, three giant inflatable jungle-gyms and free refreshments. The cost was $5 for the general public and free to the students. This was the ideal carnival for us because there was not a lot of kids so S.E. and Koo got to do the obstacle course ride and jumping castle room for almost the entire time. The best part was when they were thirsty-there were coolers full of refreshments provided by the university.

They got to take pictures with Spongebob Squarepants, Minnie Mouse, and high-fived Butch the mascot. Also, there was this synchronized trampoline act that was AMAZING.

This carnival was ideal for me because: no huge crowds, stinky smells, or long lines. I wished I didn't forget the camera and had called everyone I knew to go-we just happened to drive by it and decided to go. The boys absolutely LOVED it which of course made me happy.

Friday, April 23, 2010

Homemade rolls. Piping hot out of the oven. Tempting huh? Not if you are my kids. They no longer are excited about baked breads and rolls because they don't know it's not the norm. Anyway, they haven't been excited about my homemade, baked goods in a long time. Well, here's the recipe:
3 1/2 cups all-purpose flour
3 TBSP sugar
1/2 tsp salt
1 tsp SAF instant yeast
1 egg, lightly beatened
1 to 1 1/3 cup hot water
Mix all together in a Kitchen-Aid mixer with hook attachment for around 3-5 minutes or until smooth and elastic looking. Roll into ball and place in greased bowl covered for 1 hour. Punch down, make into small balls and place in greased baking dish. Cover and allow to rise for 40-60 minutes or whenever it doubles in size. Bake at 375F for around 15-18 minutes.

Wednesday, April 21, 2010

Susan Elizabeth Phillips

She is an author I am madly trying to get through all her books. They are mainly romantic comedy with a flair of heart-warming transformation of her main characters from fall and rise from grace. Just thought you might want to check out her books. My favorite ones are: Natural Born Charmer, Ain't She Sweet, and Lady Be Good.

Sunday, April 18, 2010

100K Relay Race




Today I ran in a 100k relay race with nine other women. There were nine women teams and we came in third place with a team time of 9 hours and 17 minutes. I ran 7.9 miles most of it downhill. My leg of the race was the second longest with it rated at moderate/hard because of the straight downhill. I averaged a 10 minute mile which was excellent for me.
The weather was perfect-low 70's with a breeze. Lovely. I felt wonderful but here's what I learned from this race: no matter how fit I am getting, my legs can only stretch so far. Someone with long legs jogging can kick my hinny with me running-NOT jogging. Alo, I just don't have the competitive spirit it takes to muster any extra ooomp to pass other runners. I just run. I can go for a long time at a jogging rate. I'm not sure I am good for relay teams. The other runners were definitely faster than me, but they were also a lot taller and in better shape. Two years ago when I first about this race-I remember thinking "Wow, I don't think I could ever do this". Well I did it and got a ribbon for my efforts.
The only thing I didn't like was I was gone for 11 hours with not enough food and I MISSED my husband and boys so much I almost ran home at one point. If I do this again, I will make a point to have my husband and kids meet me and bring more food.

Now the gross part, I was dirty, sweaty, and had to use port-a-potties the entire day and when I finally got home, I couldn't get to the shower for over an hour later. I was rank. Still, I'm so proud of how far I've come from the gal that would take 35 minutes to run a 1.5 miles back in college. My long term hope is to inspire my boys to not ever give up.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Koo

How do you teach a little four-year old boy not to be so impulsive and break his spirit? He has to touch EVERYTHING, especially when you tell him no touch. Petrified poo, used gum stuck to a side of a building (super ewwhh) or touching public toilets without hestitation-if it turns your stomach, he's touched it.

Also, this kid has one speed-fast. His give-mom-a-heart-attack-move is running full speed down a hill, look over his shoulder and speed up. Sometimes he doesn't fall, but the times he has-it hurts but apparently not enough to stop this practice. There's not a fort, structure, or project of his big brother's that he doesn't destroy as soon as it's left unattended. I'm sure this is typical behavior for a boy but I'm having a hard time because I feel like I'm a broken record with all the "STOP!" and "NO!".

On the bright side, he is so lovable. Very affectionate and has a killer smile and is just spunky. I love that he still loves to cuddle with me.

Monday, April 12, 2010

Holiday Craft Grinch

I have a confession. As crafty as I am, I hate making projects for holidays because you spend a LOT of resources making them and then you have to store them for 355 days until the holiday comes around again. Then, you have to remember to dig it up and display them. Too much effort for too little display time. That's why I have a FULL drawer of Christmas fabric that still have not been made into decorative Christmas crafts.

Why am I ranting about this today? I surf at a lot of crafty bloggers and am amazed that a lot of women have time to work on holiday crafts. For example, there are a lot of felt bunnies and mod podged eggs being cranked out. Amazing work. Too much effort for me to even attempt.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Hiking adventures

We have been going for mile long hikes behind our home this past week. There is a "forest" beyound the wheatfields which hooks up to another neighborhood and the elementary school. The boys loved walking there to play at the park. Yesterday, Koo was walking ahead and as we approached him, he was poking at some black, petrified, tubular mass. I frozed then screamed when I realized it was dog poo. "Get away from that son!!" After all the panic and fight to keep my dinner down, we asked why he touched it. He thought it was pine cones. UUUhhhhh...this maybe one downside to living amongst wheatfields and a newer neighborhood with not a lot of mature trees. My kid mistakes poo for pine cones. Needless to say, the boys showered and scrubbed down ASAP.

Friday, April 9, 2010

A Thrifting I will go...

I went thrift-store shopping in a big city about an hour and half way. Without kids. With a budget of $40. Spent most of it. The best part was to go with a friend with such great love for kids and has the wisdom of someone whose experienced a lot of life and willing to share her knowledge. Loved it. All I can say is "When can we do it again?".

Thursday, April 1, 2010

strawberry paradise






Strawberries have been in abundance this past two weeks and we have been in paradise. We made fresh strawberry pie, strawberry cake, smoothies, freezer jam, pretty much have had fresh strawberries with almost every meal. I am on borrowed time because as much as the boys love strawberries-if they eat too much, they break out in a rash. I just love how much fiber, vitamins, and flavor strawberries have. I can't help myself. I even made an apron with a strawberry on it. The apron was made using fabric I made drapes for the boys' room. The rick-rack was in a free pile from a garage sale and the strawberry was

Thursday, March 25, 2010

What the...slam on brakes!!

I think the squirrels in my town have a death wish because they are running aimlessly through the streets. Since it's warmer now, I wonder if this haphazard and dangerous trek is due to hormones raging and they are out and about looking for love. Or perhaps just looking for some good nuts. Aren't we all?! So sad because I've driven by three flattened squirrels that did not make it. So sad.

Wednesday, March 24, 2010

weighing in on the matter

It's been awhile since I've blogged about my weight and my continual struggle to reconcile the vision I have in my mind with what I actually look like. Living in this lighter body has not made me feel thinner. I still struggle with the same issues as when I was 30 lbs. heavier. Fat days when jeans fit tight, when I am bored or stressed-I overeat, and when I just forget that I have to take care of myself-I eat.

However, I am more conscious of not using food to mask feelings. It doesn't make a problem go away when I engage in emotional eating. I have to repeat to myself that I should eat only when I'm hungry. No other reason. This helps to write this out. I'm not sure where all this talk is getting me-it just helps.

Thursday, March 11, 2010

I think every blogger struggles to figure out how much to share and how much to hold back. Well, I've been struggling with this sadness for about two weeks now and it's not about me. It's not my story. I can't share details. It's about my friend who went through a HORRIFIC loss and I am so sad for her that it is manifesting itself in depression for me. I can't talk about it or think about it without tearing up. All I know is there is no correct way or one way to get over something you shouldn't have to get over. This sadness isn't going away anytime soon but I've got to trudge on in order to not be short with my loved ones.

Monday, March 8, 2010

Finding a Happy Place

Can't seem to find you. Misplaced you somewhere. Could it be under a puddle of pee on my just cleaned bathroom? Can't find it anywhere. Must go run and see if I can locate it or just keep running away...

Friday, March 5, 2010

Point and click

The boys have officially become computer savy. They do not know how to read and spell words and in the past when we have tried to teach them how the mouse works-clueless, uncertainty, and frustration would set in. Well, on Wednesday, we were at the library checking out books to devour and S.E. sat at the kid's computer and next thing you know, he's playing "I Spy" by pointing and clicking!! They get the drag, double-click, and all before they know how to read. Koo picked it up by watching S.E. play the game. They love hidden pictures game. Thanks Highlights magazine and Richard Scarry books.

Wednesday, March 3, 2010

Should be grateful

I should be grateful that I have two healthy boys and not frustrated because life around me is in chaos. My home does not need to be immaculate or everything has to be in perfect order. I have found that I've been emotionally drained lately so this manifests into being short with the kids. I noticed the boys don't talk to me the way they used to or come to me with problems. Must go hug and love my boys.

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Earthquake in Chile

Yesterday, there was a huge earthquake in Chile. I have friends whose extended family live in the region hit. I can't imagine the destruction. This earthquake follows the one in Haiti and I feel very helpless to know what to do to help other than send funds to help aid in the rescue and rebuild. God bless those who lost their lives, lost loved ones, or have been hurt or displaced.

Tuesday, February 23, 2010

Today I feel sore but re-energized to eat better and write everything down. It's the one thing to keep me from overeating. Here's a lovely recipe adapted from Taste of Home:

Caesar Salad

1 TBSP canola or olive oil
4 1/2 tsp lemon juice
1 tsp prepared mustard
1 minced garlic clove
1 tsp ground black pepper
6 cups torn Romaine lettuce
1/4 cup croutons
1/4 cup shredded parmesan

There, you can get your Caesar salad fix without busting the waistline.

Potty at the pool

The boys have been in swimming lessons for a year now and they are doing so well. They can both swim by themselves for about 6 strokes before panic sets in and they stop and reach for the teacher. Very proud.

So here's how yesterday's lesson:

Koo: "Mommy, I have to go potty."
Me: "Okay, let's go buddy. (As he is doing his business) Koo, you're not drinking the water again right?"
Koo: "Actually Mom, I am because I sink when I swim."
Me: "Ewwhh Koo, try not to do it again okay?"
Koo: "Okay mom."

Done.
Yeah right. 10 minutes later, he comes out of the water again. BIG SIGH from me.
Koo: "Mom, I have to go potty again."
So off we go to the potty. Glad we talked buddy. BTW, this class is only 30 minutes long. That's lot of chlorinated-to-mask-all-the-pee-happening in there water. On an up note, he used to go potty six times in 30 minutes when we first started swimming lessons.

Sunday, February 21, 2010

Pain Recipe

Ingredients:
1 Beefcake Military trainer
1 aging thirty-something trying-to-get-in shape mom
14 miles
Heaps of sunshine

Directions:
Run for 2 hours and 35 minutes. Pain at its' best.

Friday, February 19, 2010

Fever

S.E. has had a terrible fever for the past two days with a rash all over his body. He complained about his ears hurting and his throat. Took him in yesterday to see the doctor and they poked and prodded and swabbed. He has strep throat and he is contagious for two more days. So, I'm sorry if I we unknowingly got anyone infected. I was sure he probably also had an ear infection but nope. The boys have so far made it through their entire lives without an ear infection. I had vertigo last year and it was not fun. I don't wish ear infections on anyone.

Thursday, February 11, 2010

Fast for me

I ran 3.35 miles in 30 minutes yesterday!!! I ran 1.25 miles of it at 7.0 on the treadmill!! I am not bragging...I'm just so shocked that I pulled this off and can walk today. I followed up the run with strength training because that's what "athletes" do. (chuckles)...

Wednesday, February 10, 2010

Koo's first play date

Koo had his first play date with a friend that is entirely his...no association with S.E. and he did a pretty good job of trying to make her happy. He played kitchen, swords, Wii, and ate cranberry scones along with fish crackers. It was very cute to see him show her how to change Transformers from robots to cars while she looked like she could care less. Get use to it baby boy-dad's still trying to teach me how his electronics work on his RC airplanes.

But like any absent mom, I took no photos so the moment is lost forever. Feeling a bit loser-ish over the whole matter.

big, very big

Pimple. Blemish. Mt. Hood. Whatever you call, I've got it stuck to my chin. I thought I was done with pimples in my teens. Why now? It's huge people and it hurts. It's one of those that starts deep in your pores and took days to surface but once it did, this mini-mountain of goo turned bright pink and dug its heels into my face. Gross. Painful. Eye-catching. Wow. My boys asked me why I put that there. I couldn't even laugh because it hurts. Okay, whining session over. Will try to post a pic if it would fit through the lens.

Tuesday, February 9, 2010

Stronger

I ran 10 miles on Sunday. It was wet, cold, and peaceful. Yesterday, I did 30 minutes on the elliptical machine and strength trained. I have to say, working on my abs each time I am at the gym-I am getting really strong in this area. Still my stomach is not flat but it is a lot smaller than what it used to be. My friend M who has been working out with me once a week has lost two pounds this week and I am so happy for her. I find myself eating more if I don't track on paper what I've eaten so today, I will track-writing it down.

Friday, February 5, 2010

Snacking

I am full. Why am I snacking? Old behaviors creeping back. I'm writing this down to remind myself that I can stop at any point. Stop. Eating. Everything. In. Sight. Okay, admitting this made me feel better and aware. I'm doing so well right now-I'm not sure why I am subconsciously sabbotaging myself. All I can think of is old habits die really, really hard.

Thursday, February 4, 2010

"Mommy...I peed in my pants"

Those words jolted me out of bed last night as my four year-old Koo wet himself at the crack of dawn. You know what that means-cleaning bedding, bathrooms, and everything aroun that I think he might have trampled on. Thank goodness for waterproof mattress pads!! I thank the folks came up with that idea-although any parent could have this similar lightbulb moment. Should I get extra mommy pay for working with biohazard liquids? Or the fact that I just cleaned the bathroom last night for the second time? I'm documenting this so that when the boys are all grown, they can see that mom didn't just stay home with them eating bonbons and watching soap operas. I'm making no sense because I'm so sore and tired.

On a progress note: Strength trained and cardio 1 hour. Ran 4 miles.

Saturday, January 30, 2010

New Bunkbeds

The boys got a new bunkbed today. Their current bunkbed is toddler-size and they are growing up much to my objection so stealing an idea from my friend, we spent some of their Christmas and birthday money on new bedding. Since it was their money, we let them choose the designs. So we have Spongebob Squarepants for S.E. and planes from Koo. Why couldn't they pick the same patterns so it would flow better in their room?! Oh well, it felt good to just let them pick what they wanted instead of having me bossing them around all the time.

Friday, January 29, 2010

Update: the skinny and hip of it

Previous blogs ramblings have reference my wide hips and the near crisis situation of whether or not I should cave into fashion by wearing skinny jeans. Did those in he 80's and it wasn't pretty. Well, my friend just handed down a beautiful pair of skinny jeans that once hemmed up from long length to shorter-than-ankle length to fit me...it's not super skinny but skinny at the bottom nonetheless. I think it looks okay but I might be hopped up on my exercise-like-a-demon hormones so if I'm going to wear it out and about and see how I feel about it. This is part of embracing my wide hips.

Friday, January 22, 2010

Smile?!











This has been happening for at least six months now, Koo has this "fake" cheesy smile when we take pictures. Normally, he doesn't smile like this. The only time this comes out is when he gets his picture taken. What do you think?

Here comes the sun...












The warmest and nicest January in my recent memory. It's been sunny and in the upper 40's to low 50's everyday this week so the boys have been getting some Vitamin D therapy time outside. Being half Asian, they have a harder time absorbing Vitamin D so I try to get them out when it's sunny. Here's a fun afternoon at the park. The boys actually were not crabby about getting their pictures taken. So I went click crazy. I'm obsessed with these two boys. They make my life so special...I can't imagine not knowing them. Thanks for making it possible God and Lovely Hubby.