Saturday, May 21, 2016

Joel is 9 months!

3/4 of the first year has already passed!


.... And party planning is going in full force.  Because I'm a little bit birthday crazy like that.  (We chose a "Where the Wild Things Are" theme for his 1st!)


We aren't walking just yet, but we're getting close.  Joel can stand up on his own without pulling on something... and he can steady himself without holding on to anything for balance.  No steps just yet though!


Still going strong breastfeeding, and still NO teeth!


His latest trick is waving.  Waving hello.... waving goodbye.... and often just smiling and waving for the fun of it.

Another new trick-- the "fetch" phase has begun.  The tossing things so that someone will pick them up only for him to toss them again.  Mostly he plays fetch with his big brothers, because they insist on being the ones to pick things up for him.


Mr. Joel also enjoyed his first beach vacation this past month and the kiddo LOVED the sand and the ocean.  He had sand in every roll and crevice, and even some sand in his belly that he ate.

Happy 9 months little dude!  

Sunday, May 15, 2016

Race 13.1 Round 2!

Today I ran my 3rd half marathon!  (Second time running Race 13.1 Greensboro).  If you read last week's post, you know that I was super nervous about it.  I hate that I put so much pressure on myself, but I think that's what all runners do.  I set a goal, and with 3 children, the planning part and the accomplishing isn't all that easy.

I'm SUPER duper thrilled to say though, that all those nerves and all of the adrenaline were put to work out on the course this morning!
My biggest fans saw me off at the start and then were spoiled by Daddy at Tex & Shirley's with pancakes and hot cocoa while I was running. 

Leeland's sign says, "Momma, I love you! I hope you win!"  They were constantly asking if I won.... not really knowing how to answer that because I'm certainly not the fastest of the sold out race crowd, I finally said, "Sure.  I won.  I beat myself!"

Hayden's sign

Running for the FINISH line waving at my babies!

Daniel's sign says "Go Momma Go.  13.1 Miles of peace and quiet.  We love you!"

It's like the race directors KNEW me!  As much as I wanted to wear my "half marathon mom" tank that I wore at my last race, I couldn't resist the cute mason jar shirt.  AND a little mason jar medal at the finish!

SOOOO.... I was super nervous all week about timing and feeling unsure if I'd be able to beat my last race time.  But I'm absolutely thrilled to say that I rolled in at 2 hours, 6 minutes and some change.  That's TEN MINUTES faster than my last half marathon.  And I'm only 9 months postpartum from Joel.  You REALLY can do anything you put your mind to friends!  

Now the question is.... to full??  or not to full??  (Full marathon that is. )

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

5 days....

5 days out from my third half marathon and the nerves and jitters have hit me full throttle already!  I paid for the race a few weeks ago, so there's no backing out now.... I'm too cheap to let that registration fee go to waste! Haha!  While I'll round out this week with continued training and exercise, today I ran my last "long run" before the race and it gave me opportunity to try to pound out some thoughts and fears.
I don't feel quite as prepared for this race as I was for my last half marathon in all honesty.  For the last one, I had been consistently training and exercising for nearly a year and a half leading up to the race.  This go round, I just started back to exercising at 5 months postpartum this past January. 

The first week of training involved a whole lot of frustration and self talk.... I have lofty goals of being a fierce competitor and completing this race faster than I did my last half.  And while I've kept consistent, my training has not gone 100% to plan the last 12 weeks and I have rode the struggle bus often!  I had to have a heart to heart with myself and where I'm at in my training.  I don't know that it's realistic for me to think that I can beat my last time.  (It was a really great run!)  .... BUT, it came down to, "Do I still run the race, even I can't?"

Obviously, I've decided to still run, but I don't know what kind of emotions will hit me race day when I look at the time as I cross that finish line.
Race 13.1 May 2014
Two years ago, I completed Race 13.1... since then, they have changed the course, I have had a 3rd child, and I've been diagnosed with an autoimmune disease that comes with a host of symptoms, some of the more obnoxious being extreme fatigue and muscle weakness.  Like I told my endocrinologist at my appointment last month though, "I have to do this for me!"

Monday, May 9, 2016

Mother's Day Vacay

We spent the weekend away visiting Daniel's Momma near the beach.  There was a time when we all attended church together and had family dinners weekly, but almost 2 years ago she moved East and while we don't see each other weekly, her visits here and our visits there are greatly cherished by all 5 of us.  In fact, last night when we got home, literally as we're unloading ourselves from the van, Hayden was already saying he was ready to go back to Grandma's.

We arrived to her place Friday evening and went out for a nice dinner followed up by dessert at her place.  Mother's Day pound cake!  I LOVE pound cake.... it seriously is the best cake.  Chocolate pound cake with chocolate buttercream frosting.
Saturday we went on a little adventure to the North Carolina Battleship.  It was about an hour and a half drive from "Grandma's house."  We typically go to the aquarium when we visit, but this time, I had lofty ideas of trying something new and thought the boys would enjoy the battleship.  Let's just say that the battleship visit had it's highs and lows....  There's a self guided tour and you can climb deep down into the battleship and see an array of things!  The tour is supposed to take about 2 hours for the average group.  I guess it depends on how many signs you read on your way through.


 The battleship trip started with 2 very excited boys ready and eager to explore!  (Daniel was wearing Joel in the Tula.)  .... Then when we got to the tour portion of going "down below" the deck, they just weren't so sure.  To their credit, the stairs are steep, and you can't really see what you're getting into so there's a certain fear of the unknown, AND in some places you are walking on metal grates that you can see through to the next deck below and the boys didn't feel they were stable or safe on them.  Add to that, some sensory quirks that Leeland has and it was quite an adventure.


Leeland and Hayden writing thank you's to veterans. 



Lots and lots of guns..... guns everywhere! ..and in all sizes!



I liked checking out the kitchens and the bakery of course!  I mean, check out the giant vintage mixer!!




Daddy Kroh got in a serious workout wearing our 23 pound baby through the tour.  (Which he loves wearing Joel.)  And he said his favorite part was the guns, (naturally) or the bit of video we saw down below deck of a veteran speaking about his experience on the ship.  We couldn't watch the whole video because our crazies were being a little crazy.

Once we got back on deck, a certain 4 year old needed to go potty which involved me scooping him up and jogging around small crowds of people to get completely off the ship and to the restrooms.  I blame myself for not making him try before we boarded... it slipped my mind.  But that's how our tour ended since I couldn't get back on the ship without going all the way back around to the very front. 

SO.... there was a little bit of whining and a little bit of coercing to get the boys to the tour down below since they were anxious about it.... and towards the end of the tour there was some complaining that it wasn't over yet and I sort of feel like the trip to the Battleship didn't go as I imagined it.... BUT then we got in the van and headed to lunch and I heard little boys say things like, "I loved the battleship" and, "let's go back again some time!"  Kids are funny!  Haha!  

Saturday night we headed to church service with Grandma and out to dinner. 

Then Sunday, Grandma cooked us up a yummy breakfast and we spent the afternoon at the beach!





Could not have asked for a better Mother's Day than sitting on the beach without plans or phones or watches or interruptions.... just playing with our boys and making memories!  

It was such a wonderful visit to Grandma's filled with good quality time together and it was also a much needed break for us to be able to get away from the busyness that consumes our day-to-day.  

Tuesday, May 3, 2016

2016 Reads: April

Progress made in 2 books, but only 1 book completed in April.  Looking forward to catching up on some reading through the Summer!