Tuesday, August 23, 2016

What Surprised Me Most About Life with a One Year Old

Three posts a week. Well, I'm not quite doing that, but just saying that goal out loud has reminded me to get back here more often. So, let's get down to business.

What's surprised me most about life with a one year old:

He can walk and mostly understands what I'm talking about, but that doesn't mean his baby stage is gone. There are still plenty of days where he wants to be held for a good portion and cries from teething, being tired or just feeling clingy in general. And when I work in the store on Sundays, he is definitely ready for me to be home after 6-7 hours.

My arms are probably the strongest they've ever been. No, I'm not using dumbbells on the regular, nor do I have a ripped upper body, but strong it is! Hello, holding a 25+ lb toddler while doing many other things (making coffee, prepping dinner, doing laundry) leads to strength naturally.

As a parent, fourteen months is quite different than twelve months of age, so when strangers in the grocery store ask how old he is, despite my better judgement, I give Henry's age in months rather than saying "Oh, he's a little over one."

He understands and is capable of so much more than I ever expect. He will follow commands or go get something I'm talking about frequently. I love it when I tell him we're going to go on a walk and he goes to get his shoes from the front door.

He likes to help out. He really gets a kick out of putting clothes into the laundry basket. Unfortunately, these are usually the folded, clean clothes from my drawers. Henry also is really into what I'm cooking or baking and would like to help stir and such, but he's not quite old enough. I can see us getting one of those safety stools for him in the next year or so.

He is funny on a regular basis. Things he does that surprise and crack me up: says "Cheers" (in his own way of course) and likes to cheers our carrots, shakes his head vigorously to mimic the penguin in his book, insists on holding something (book, baby doll, beach ball, etc) 90% of the time while he's nursing, pretends to cough when Pete or I cough or sneeze (and thinks it's the funniest thing ever).

It's impossible to keep your kid protected from the sun during summer unless they're wearing long sleeves and pants around the clock. He even likes it when I put sunblock on him, but still has plenty of sun exposure from our outdoor activities. It's frustrating, but it is what it is.

Baby on a mission

I never thought it would be easier to make friends as a result of being a mom than it would be doing almost anything else. Athletics has definitely connected to me to a lot of people, but in terms of strong friendships that I try to keep up with regularly, the connection of parenthood seems to make the friendship side of things easier. There are so many things you can commiserate over whether or not your kids or interests are similar. Plus, there's the whole kiddo schedule. Basically, we don't leave the house after 6:00 p.m. 95% of the time.

I didn't expect it would take him over a year to really start saying "mama." Sure, he used to babble "mamamamama," but it wasn't until a week ago or so that he really started saying it on purpose. He's been saying "dada" on purpose now for many months.

And finally, I didn't expect each stage to be more exciting than the one before. Yes, mobility and independence comes with their own challenges, but having a spirited, interactive little toddler has been so much fun.

So, that's it for now. I didn't really have any idea what having a one year old would be like (let's be honest, when you think about having a baby, you primarily focus on that infant stage), but so far it's awesome.

Happy Tuesday!

Monday, August 15, 2016

A Beginner All Over Again

It's funny how only a few weeks after the Fueled by Fine Wine Half, I found one of my usual 3.5 mile routes challenging to finish. I walked the big hill I had been jogging up before and I really had to work for every mile I completed.

A week off from being sick and no more long runs and all of a sudden what was easy before is a challenge. Anyway, I'm working back to feeling strong again on my 3-4 mile runs and occasionally adding another mile or two for bonus points.

It's just fascinating to see that even after YEARS at this running thing, I can feel like a beginner all over again. That's actually the cool thing about almost anything in life, really.

But it's okay, I'm still making the most of these runs. Like stopping to look at the pretty wildflowers weeds?

I haven't signed up for any other races, so I'm just going to stay in shape and hopefully pick something soon. I'd love to get back to Thursday night speed group on occasion, but the little guy's bedtime routine always makes that tough.

My right glute tells me pretty regularly that it's still the weak one, so I'm trying to remember to do a little something for it a few times a week. In addition to a few old PT exercises, the yoga pose warrior III always seems to light the fire where I need it most.

Beyond the miles, we're making the most of summer and trying to take advantage of these hot temps by going to the pool and meeting friends at parks with water features. We've had 90+ degree days lately, so water, popsicles and cold beverages are necessity.

How is your summer shaping up? What's left on your summer bucket list? Favorite read or listen lately?

We have a trip to the midwest booked in a few weeks, a visit to the Oregon Coast and a few more pool days on my mental list. Beyond that, I'd like to drive a ways to do a hike or two and maybe squeeze in one more camping trip, but we'll see.

What I've been enjoying lately...
How to Clean Out Your Closet by Jill of Good Life for Less
Mainly I love the idea of sticking to your "desired personal style." Now the real challenge though is figuring out WHAT that style is. 

The Lively Show podcast by Jess Lively
I've mentioned this one before, but Jess is always inspiring me with her work in personal growth, entrepreneurship and now, her worldwide travels. I'll admit that it does give me the international travel itch.