Saturday, July 16, 2016

All's Quiet on the [Coffee] Front

Okay, I'm racing to get this third post in before the end of the week. We are heading out to go camping with friends in an hour or so, so I wanted to get my third post in.

Also, Henry went back to sleep after his 5:00 am wake up, so I've been enjoying a little quiet time, but still have a list of THINGS TO DO! And first on that list was a quiet coffee sitting on the couch watching the sky brighten up. Ahhhh...

I thought for this morning's post I'd just talk about our little outdoor adventures this week. After prepping for several events at Run Hub (the running store I work at) and then 10 days of the Olympic Trials in town, it feels nice to have a bit more down time and get back to some of our outdoorsing [new word I just made up].


On Monday afternoon, we met up with our friend Heather and her baby Andrew for a little hike up Spencer Butte. It may be short (3 mi round trip), but what it lacks in distance, it makes up for in elevation and views.


I mentioned this on Instagram, but the butte is more terrifying now that Henry is walking everywhere. So many rocks to trip on and opportunities for him to fall off the side of the mountain.




Evidence that he sat for approximately 5 seconds at the top...



We also took a little ride with H in his trailer. Made a pit stop to stare at the ducks wading in the water. 


Thursday eve, he had taken a late nap, so I figured it would be a good opportunity to get out and enjoy the last bit of sunlight for the day. We hopped on the Ridgeline Trail and did an easy 45 minute hike, taking time to touch some of the trees along the way.



Henry and I were under the weather this week, so sleep was a bit rough for everyone, but I hope we're back on track. Crossing my fingers that tent camping goes well tonight! 

Okay, gotta run! Happy weekend!

Thursday, July 14, 2016

Fueled by Fine Wine Half Marathon

Whoop! The Fueled by Fine Wine half has come and gone. It was a fun weekend with friends and a good opportunity to do something that reminded me of my old self again. Granted, doing these things are no small feat with a small child in tow, but thanks to my mom, it was possible.

Saturday morning, we picked up my mom and headed north to Domaine Drouhin for packet pick-up.



The winery and the views there were gorgeous.


We met my friend Stef and her mom and six month old at the winery. After grabbing our packets, we opted to take advantage of the 2-for-1 tasting special they had going on for race participants.

My mom graciously walked Henry all around for a good 45 minutes while we tasted two Chardonnays and three Pinot Noirs.


The final Pinot was by far my favorite, but at $75 a bottle, we passed on any purchases.


After lunch in the small town of Dayton, OR, we headed to the B&B (Abbey Road Farm) where we had rented the farm house for all of us to stay. Our friend Danielle also met us there. After getting settled, we walked around the property checking out the goats, sheep and chickens. 


View from our living room


We all brought fixings for chicken tacos and salad, which were yummy (and great for leftovers the next day). After cleaning up and getting Henry ready for bed, you know the rest of the story. Despite getting a bit less sleep, I felt pretty good when 5:00 a.m. rolled around. 

Around 6:20 a.m., we headed to Stoller Family Estate where the race started and hopped in the bathroom line. Happy and ready to race er, run long!


A few weeks ago I decided to hop on the snapchat wagon. If you want to follow me, my username is ljmoe. It's mostly Henry stuff, but I did snap a few things during the half marathon. 


The race had plenty of rolling terrain with 1,700 ft of total elevation gain taking us in, out and around several wineries. As you can see, there were some steep hills where walking was necessary and then some downhills where I really let loose (when we weren't in the vineyards). 


The course was about a 50/50 mix of asphalt vs rocky, dirt terrain. I didn't push super hard and stopped to take a few photos here and there. It was definitely cooler than I imagined for a July race (temps in the 50s I'd guess), but the cooler weather was nice for running.


I finished just barely over 2 hours, which is what I had predicted my time would be. Stef and Danielle finished in 1:43 and 1:52! Afterward, we changed into dry clothes, grabbed our wine glasses and did a bit of wine tasting from several of the Dundee Hills wineries that were stationed in the finish party. It was a fun way to end a race, for sure!


After a bit of hanging out, we headed back to the house, showered, grabbed some food and checked out. I ended the weekend feeling happy, tired and thankful. 


Now that the race is behind me, Pete asked what my next race was. Surprisingly, I didn't have anything lined up, but now that I've run long and slow(ish), I have the itch to run faster again. I'm thinking about signing up for a 10K in August. 

What are you looking forward to this weekend? What was your favorite workout of the week? Out of the blue, I decided to do the Fitnessista's summer shape up workout and it left me sweaty and tired in no time. 


Sunday, July 10, 2016

Patience

Tap, tap, tap. Is this thing on?

I want to stop just thinking about doing something and start doing it already. I'm talking small things at the moment, so let's start with blogging. I want to write more. It's cathartic. It's a creative outlet for me. I have things to say. And I miss doing it. So for now, I'm going to try and write three times a week even if it's short and sweet and accompanied by one photo.

Today I ran the Fueled by Fine Wine half marathon with a few good girlfriends. I'll do a race recap later this week, but today's post comes from the weekend.

My friend Stef (who has a six month old) and I brought our moms along this weekend so we could make the whole thing possible. At this point, I could probably leave Henry overnight with my parents, but he doesn't regularly sleep through the night and let's be honest, he's quite a lot of work.


Last night, we made dinner at the house we were staying at, did bath around 7:30 pm, I got Henry into his PJs and started reading books - all a part of our normal bedtime routine. After nursing him, I put him down in the travel crib (with his paci & chick blanket) only to have him stand up immediately and begin screaming. As much as I hate hearing him scream, I gave him a good 10 minutes hoping he'd give in as he sometimes does when he's really tired.

[We've had a rough go of it the last few times I've tried to put him down in the travel crib, so I'm hoping that he won't always fight it when we aren't at home.]

After that clearly wasn't working, I went in to soothe him. And while he calmed down, he was now not at all interested in drifting off to sleep. He wanted to crawl all over and off the bed, he wanted to read all the books, he wanted to leave the room, he wanted to scale the back of the bed frame. Yep.

In the not so pretty parts of momhood, when you're tired and angry, you clench your teeth, you cuss to yourself, you say "no" just a little too sternly and sometimes you tear up.

So at 9:00 pm we headed back out to the living room to play. By 9:45, I was feeling pretty weary and just wanting some quiet adult conversation. [Spoiler alert: I didn't get it.] We finally headed back to the room, I read a few stories, turned off the light and then sang him some songs until he gave in and fell asleep. [Halleluiah]

Because I wasn't going to risk another two hour baby sleep strike, I gently rolled him from my arms on to the King bed between my mom and I, where he slept pretty well the rest of the night. Sometimes motherhood leaves you feeling defeated, impatient and raw.

While my mom and friend D both mentioned how patient I was with him, I'll admit I felt nothing of the sort. It's a work in progress, but I want to get there. I want to find peace and patience in those frustrating moments because the gritting my teeth and getting angry doesn't serve me or anyone well.

Wishing you a peaceful, patient evening <3 b="">

Wednesday, June 15, 2016

Mother's Day Hike: Brice Creek Trail

I know Mother's Day was a while ago, but I got some great photos on this hike and wanted to share them. As Mother's Day was nearing, I told the manfriend that what I wanted to do for the day was go on a hike and have some good food. I took the day off working at the running store so we could have some much needed family time. 

While the weather that morning was rainy and grey in Eugene, I hoped our hiking weather would be more desirable. Henry slept in a bit and then we got him dressed and fed and loaded up the car to drive south about an hour to Brice Creek (30 min outside Cottage Grove) where we planned to hike. Thankfully, the weather down south was clear and perfect for hiking. <I busted my knee open
almost two years ago.>>


The trail has some gradual hills, but for the most part is pretty flat and goes along the creek and eventually lands you at Trestle Creek Falls about 3.1 miles later. 


Henry was starting to get fussy and hungry, so we actually turned around about 0.6 miles before the falls. While I had wanted to make it to the falls, I was already totally happy we were out hiking, seeing beautiful scenery and spending time together, so turning around made the most sense for a happy baby. About a mile after turning around (and handing the backpack over to the manfriend), Henry fell asleep and we quietly made our way back to the trailhead. 


It doesn't look comfortable, but it was pretty cute seeing his little head hanging off to the side as he snoozed away.



Just as we made it back to the final bridge to walk back to our car, the little guy woke up and was pretty cheerful for our family photo. :)


We got back to Eugene around 1:00pm and grabbed slices of wood-fired pizza and a salad from the local market for lunch. This is definitely an activity I'm putting on our summer list, at least once or twice. 

Father's Day is this weekend, so I better go get a card and some other goodies! H and I will be out of town Friday and Saturday, so I figure that's his gift, right?! A bit of solo time. 

On the running front, my half marathon is just a month away, so I need to stick to some regular running and maybe try and throw in a few speed workouts for kicks. This is a hilly half, so I have no intentions of being super speedy on race day, but I figure it can't hurt with all those hills.

Since I'll be out of town most of Friday and Saturday and will be working on Sunday, I'm going to try and make my Friday morning run a long one. The last two weekends we've been out of town and had family visiting, so a long run wasn't possible. Now I just need to get in a few more 10-12 milers and I figure I'm good to go. 

Any fun plans for your weekend? If you're training for something, give me the details!

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Dear Henry: eleven months

This Sunday Henry will turn 1 year old. In the last few weeks and now almost every day, I notice how much more of a little boy he's becoming and how much less of a baby he is. Before he turns one, let's look back on 11 months. 

Dear Henry,

At almost exactly 11 months old you decided to take your first few steps. Your balance has slowly improved and as you have realized you can move when vertical rather than only horizontal, you want to try anyway.


It's clear you're comprehending so many of the things we say to you and you are actually signing back to us now. Mostly more and all done. And sometimes when I sing "the more we get together", you even join in with your more sign.


Slowly but surely, you're deciding a bit more what you do and don't like food wise and are also showing your emotions via mini tantrums when you're mad.

LIKES
  • your baby doll
  • having all your stuffed animals in your crib with you after nap
  • books (many of them you want to read over and over again)
  • putting dirt in your mouth
  • emptying any and all drawers/cupboards
  • cake (you practically tackled me for it at your friend Parker's birthday party)
  • seeing your baby friends (lots of hugs)


DISLIKES
  • diaper changes
  • when a remote/ipad/cell phone is taken away from you

FIRSTS
  • Taking steps! Just a few at the beginning of the month and by the end, easily 20 at a time or halfway across a room
  • putting the rings back on your ring stacker
  • giving hugs & kisses (sometimes) when asked 

GROWTH
  • 23lb 8oz
  • 30.5"
  • Clothes: 18 months
  • Teeth: 6 (Drooling has been nonstop around here! In fact, I got one of your cute bibs back out because it's been useful again.)

SLEEPING
  • Taking 1-2 naps, ~2 hrs each (sometimes just 1 if we stretch the morning out with activities)
  • At night, 2 wake ups (usually 12 am and 5 am). I know that we could probably ween you off of those night feedings with some work and dad going in to try and soothe you, but I'd just prefer you ween yourself soon so we don't have to do that. 

I had drafted this post yesterday and then last night you had a cold that got worse with a fever leaving you whiny, shaking and screaming at points because you were just so uncomfortable. You didn't want to nurse or do much of anything and it was a good reminder for your dad and I that while you are growing up, you still are our baby.

Happy almost 1 year, little man!

Love,

mom

Dear Henry: ten months

Thursday, May 19, 2016

Taking a Total Rest Day

It feels like forever since I talked training, eh? Well, it's still happening. Last week I ran a little over 26 miles!

I was thinking last week about how I really needed a complete rest day after several days of exhausted feeling runs. I can't put my finger on one reason I felt so wiped during most of my runs, but I'm going to chalk it up to some shorter nights of sleep, a few warmer afternoon runs with H in the stroller and also working on strengthening my right hamstring (leaving it sore).


As the weekend approached, I knew I needed to do my long run on Saturday or Sunday, so I decided the other day would be a total rest day. Midweek if I take a rest day from running, I often do a hike with Henry or something that doesn't really afford for much rest.


So, Saturday morning when it was pouring and grey outside, I welcomed my rest day with open arms and yoga pants. Ahhh... My biggest activity that day was walking around the grocery store for 30 minutes. That's how you do rest days, friends.

And Sunday, my body felt just a bit more ready to tackle 9+ miles with hills thrown in.

In exercise routines and life, there are clear advantages for taking a step back and just relaxing for a day. Most days, Henry and I are running an errand or two and walking or hiking, so an entire day or afternoon at home feels almost luxurious.

But last week amidst a busy calendar and just feeling burnt out, I could tell we needed a life rest day as well. I nixed my plans for the afternoon and soaked up a few extra hours of playtime at home with the little man.

He loves having anything in his mouth, especially this plastic bug.

It was just a good reminder that the things I need or want to do often can wait. Henry is at a really fun age where he's starting to laugh at things out of the blue, plays independently and can even follow instructions if I ask him to bring me something, so it's not like staying at home is a bummer.  Plus, he's working on his walking skills so time spent at home is just extra practice time for him.


I probably sound like a broken record talking about rest days again, but I don't think enough of us really give ourselves appropriate recovery time from whatever it may be - work or workouts or life in general.

Do you have a regular rest or recovery day on your calendar? What do you typically do that day as part of your recovery? 

Tuesday, May 10, 2016

First Flight with Baby

It's crazy to think that I didn't get on an airplane until I was in middle school for a band trip to Disneyland (nerd alert) and these days, it's not uncommon to have flown several times before the age of one. Ah, modern conveniences.

A few months ago, I threw the idea out to my college friend Laura (who also lives in Eugene and has a 2-year-old) that we should go visit our friend Audrey in California together with the kiddos. All of a sudden, the trip was here, the minivan was booked and we were off!


Some of my preparation was the same as it was pre-baby: I still packed too many clothes, was overanalyzing the weather and ran on the day of our flight.

And some things were different: I had to pack diapers and baby clothes as well as books, toys and snacks that would hopefully keep him entertained on the flight. And I didn't pack a single thing to entertain myself (i.e. books or magazines).

[Being the parent of a small human means you never have enough hands.]

TRAVEL
Henry did pretty well on his first flight considering he had barely napped all day and our flight left at 4:00 p.m. He was awake and active the first 45 min of the flight looking out the window, peaking at other passengers and grabbing the in-flight magazine, and then he finally nursed and fell asleep for the second half.

We picked up our baggage and sweet minivan with no trouble and grabbed a quick dinner at Chipotle before heading on to Audrey's house.

[Life with a busy baby means cleaning up approx. 20 black beans from the floor of the restaurant and nearly having your drink and food dumped on the floor multiple times.]

SLEEP
During our visit we stayed both in Santa Cruz and in Monterey. The key to sleeping success for us was bringing the sound machine from home (familiar sound, small, easy to just plug in), a few books he likes and as his cuddly chick blankie.


One morning, he woke up at 6:00 a.m. so I kept him entertained in our room waiting for everyone else to wake up. By 7:30 he was rubbing his eyes, so I just asked him if he wanted to cuddle and all of a sudden, he laid his head down on my arm and conked out. 

[These are the moments you just feel your heart exploding again and again. It really can't get much better than taking a nap with your little one, especially now that this type of thing is so rare.]


I tried to take it in stride when he didn't get his usual naps. Some of his naps were shorter car naps, but he stayed surprisingly happy even when he was tired.

THE FUN STUFF
The highlights of the trip for both Henry and I were beach time and the Monterey Bay Aquarium.


My favorite memory of the weekend was walking on the Monterey beach and seeing Henry digging in the sand. Then when he really noticed the ocean, he put his head down and crawled his little heart out toward it.


The Monterey Bay Aquarium is amazing and great for kids of all ages as well as adults. My favorite parts were seeing the penguins swim and toddle around and the huge fish tanks with all kinds of crazy fish in them.


I decided not to bring our stroller on this trip, so I carried Henry everywhere in the Ergo. Being that he's now over 23 lb., my shoulders were a bit sore by the end of the weekend.


When we weren't on the go, Henry loved exploring the house. Seriously, 9 times out of 10, kids will pick the most mundane thing to play with over some exciting toy. For example, he played with this drawer and an empty oatmeal box for at least 20 minutes straight.


The Santa Cruz boardwalk and beach is much busier than Monterey, but also fun. Henry was determined to shove handfuls of sand, sticks and other junk in his mouth while we were there, so I had to be on my game! 


I'm bummed we didn't get a group photo of all of us together, but I guess we were too busy having fun and keeping track of the kids. 


Who needs toys when you have sand and a measuring cup?


HEADING HOME
Our flight home left San Jose around 7:30 p.m. and security was a nightmare. Thank goodness we arrived a few hours early because it would have been awful to be rushing or have missed our flight with kids. Henry and I shared a Jamba Juice green & ginger smoothie for dinner and then he had about five minutes to crawl around before we had to board the plane. 

The flight itself was less than ideal and resulted in me basically wrestling Henry for 1.5 hrs because he wanted to crawl all over the plane and make a mess of everything. By the time we arrived in Eugene, Laura and I were both a bit delirious and I was relieved to hand Henry over to Pete. 

Would I do anything different? Next time I would bring a small travel stroller (we don't have one yet) as well as smaller luggage and fewer clothes. 

What are your keys to smooth travel with a baby/small child? 

Thursday, April 14, 2016

Dear Henry: ten months

So, I didn't post about Henry's nine month milestones because I had all intentions of catching up with months seven and eight first. Well, let's be honest, as I haven't made time for posting even once a week, I better just cut to the chase and get on with it. 

Dear Henry,

Since we last chatted, you've really been on the move. At seven months, you decided to really start crawling on all fours and immediately after, began pulling yourself up on anything and everything. Shortly after that, you started clapping and waving after I would demonstrate it.  So fun. And even though these are no longer new "tricks," I love it every time I see you clap or wave.


LIKES
  • bananas
  • plain yogurt
  • 10-spice vegetable soup
  • baths
  • using your walker across the living room
  • playing in all the kitchen cabinets
  • trying to launch out of my arms when being carried
  • being outside


DISLIKES
  • diaper changes (like, whoa!)
  • having your nose suctioned
  • being tired or hungry

FIRSTS
  • Standing and balancing unassisted
  • Giving mama something after I asked for it
  • Playing in the sandbox at the park (yum, sand)
  • Pointing
  • Dancing & twisting


GROWTH
  • 22 lb 4oz
  • 29.5" (@ 9 months)
  • Clothes: 12-18 months 
  • Teeth: four

SLEEPING
  • 2 naps per day (usually), 1-2 hours each
  • 1-3 wake ups per night (occasionally, none)
  • Usually nurse back to sleep, but sometimes go back to sleep on your own

Ah, geez. I know you're likely going to be tall like your dad, but it doesn't make dressing you any easier. Just when I think I've bought the right size of clothing, I go to get you dressed and everything either looks entirely too small or long and baggy on you.

And socks? I don't know what these manufacturers are thinking when they make socks, but none of them fit you. Good thing summer is almost here!


In the last few weeks, I've started really reflecting on the fact that you're almost ONE year old (how?!) and it makes me a bit sad to think that you're soon to be a toddler and not a baby much longer.


But then you have a rough day where you're sick or teething and all you want to do is be held. On those days, I'm quickly reminded that no matter how mobile, you're still my little baby.


Love you lots,

Mom


Dear Henry: six months