Sunday, January 1, 2017

And that's a wrap.

2016 has come and gone.

Mind. Blown.

The older I get, the shorter the years seem to get.

Not a lot has happened since you last visited. I had mentioned before that the eldest started his first job (outside of his own food business, which he started last year). Imagine our surprise when we realized a few weeks into his job, that our mostly-work-from-home and school-from-home family needed our 3rd car. As much as I'm on the road, the hubs discovered that he hated being home without a ride. Worked out well though. We put over 30k miles a year on the jeep and it only gets about 19-20 mpg. Our new car gets 35-37 mpg, so while we're paying an additional car payment, we're actually noticing a substantial savings in gas. The hubs still has the Jeep, but I'm driving the Civic all over the planet. :)

My new-to-me 2013 Honda Civic.
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I started AND finished my first ever half marathon.

Waiting to get to the start line.
The hubs snapped this pic of me crossing the finishing line. I was sobbing, lol. Happy tears, though. So freaking proud of myself. 
With my bling. My half marathon medal, and the Triple Peach medal...the Triple Peach was a 3 run series -- a 10k (6.2 miles) in July, a 10 miler in October and the Half (13.1 miles) on Thanksgiving Day. 
I won't go on and on about it, but it was absolutely amazing for me, and I can't wait to reach the next run goal I'm setting or myself -- a full marathon in 2017! Imma do it. I'm sure of it. ;)

The day after my half (yeah, full on crazy moment, lol), my boys did their first 5k with me! I loved having them there, and we've already signed up to do another 5k together next week.

Before the start of the Buddy Christian Memorial 5k. 
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This time of year is usually our extra long winter break. With all of the holiday excitement and family stuff planning, it's hard to keep our focus. For all of us, not just the boys. They continued with their foreign language classes, and we worked through resources from a December Unit Study, but that was about it. Something is better than nothing though, yeah?
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Had a lovely Christmas, even if it was warmer than normal and seemed to come out of nowhere.

Our tree decorating, complete with a body-less Santa, White Christmas in the background and my super special ornament in memory of my sister-in-law.
I didn't think they would be, but both boys were genuinely surprised when they opened their "big" gift from us this year - a new Xbox One S and several games. :)
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Oh! I also made a trip down to Fort Lauderdale after Thanksgiving, to hang with some of my most favorite peoples. I did work from the office some while I was there, and managed to hit the beach one afternoon. But the first thing I did after driving 12 hours? Watched the Gilmore Girls revival. Don't judge. ;)
I need that bag. NEED it. 
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Ultimately, 2016 didn't suck for me. I had 366 days to love and be loved. I did and I was. Wholeheartedly. Hope 2017 is even better.

Happy New Year, errbody! :)


Sunday, November 20, 2016

Novembahhhh...

Good. Lord. How did it get here already? More importantly, how is it almost over?!

Things are going great here. Moving right along. 

Remember that 10 miler I was worried about in the last post? 

I crushed it. ;) 

Really, I was terrified that I wasn't going to be able to finish before the "sag wagon" came around (if I hadn't been able to stay in front of a 16 minute per mile pace, I would have been nudged to the finish line or on a course that was no longer maintained by volunteers or safety officers). Not only was that a non-issue, I completed the 10 miles with an average pace of 14.28. I was SO proud of myself! :) 

My awesome friend Brad semi-surprised me (I had to find out a couple days before the run, so I could pick up his race packet, lol) and came down to run my first 10 miler with me...a WEEK after he ran his first 30 mile (50k?) ultra marathon. How crazy cool is he? ;) 
Showing off my finisher's bling. :D 

A week after the 10 miler, my friend Lisa and I completed a local 5k, and 6 days after that, she and I did a local charity 10k. This particular run was awesome for me, as I finished with my best PR to date.   

Lisa and I at our 5k. She had the best socks. Yoda! 
My 10k prize and stats. 12"02"!!! Wooo! :)

My next run is the Thanksgiving Half (you really do need to be a little wacky to voluntarily run 13.1 miles, haha), followed immediately (next day, but less than 24 hours later) by a local charity 5K. While I think it was silly to sign up for the 5k so close to the half, this particular event is one that I really wanted to do...plus, both of my boys are going to run it with me! Some friends of ours as well. Big group event. Lots of fun. 

Picked up my swanky pullover and bib today. Can't wait to get the finisher's medal for this AND my special Triple Peach medal and shirt at the end! 

What am I doing the Saturday following a half and a 5k? Driving 10+ hours to the Ft. Lauderdale area to hang for a few days with some of my favorite peeps. Good stuff. I may not be able to move any part of myself on Sunday. But good stuff. 

Thanksgiving dinner with the fam will be short after the half, but at least we'll get to see everyone. No major Black Friday sales that I'm planning on participating in, but I will try my luck at a few online specials. Fingers crossed. 

Let's see...what else? 

Bailey started his first job this month. Those that know and love me, even despite my anxieties, lol, can imagine how that has torn me up. Don't get me wrong. I'm excited for him, and I'm super proud of him. But -- but -- how is he old enough for this? Hell, how am I old enough for this?! 

Pumpkins! The boys haven't carved pumpkins in a couple of years. Time usually gets away from us and none of us have the best time management skills, but this year they were able to make it happen. I love them. They free handed them, and I think they turned out great. Even better, the way they look after a couple of weeks had passed. I feel like I mostly resemble the droopy pumpkins all the time these days. ;) 

Just after they were finished. Braeden's on the left, Bailey's on the right.
Aaaahahaha. A couple weeks later. See what I mean about feeling like these guys? :P 

School stuffs is going well. Admittedly, Bailey is struggling with finding time after work shifts and on off days (he's only working about 15 hours a week, not a full time commitment or anything), but he's a trooper and is finding his groove and getting stuff done. Braeden is doing well. The language learning program they started last month (or was it in September?), Time4Languages, added German. Buuuuuut, they added it after he had already started the Spanish course. He's a little miffed at me, because he's always wanted to learn German and I'm making him finish at least the first 6 months of Spanish before I let him change. Ah well. Maybe he'll be multilingual instead of bilingual. :D 

I think that's it for now. Sorry this turned out to be an all run-type-post. I'm sure I will post about the half after it's done and I won't have another big run until the Hot Chocolate 15k in January. I'll try to be quiet about it for a little while, lol. 

Until next time. Hope you all have a wonderful Thanksgiving holiday with those that matter the most to you. 

Gonna leave you with this little this-is-my-life gem. ;) 

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Fall is my favorite.


Yep. That's me! When I was younger, I always liked spring. It was so nice when it would start to get warmer, and everything would bloom.

Then I found out I was allergic to everything that bloomed, lol. And in GA, "starts to get warmer" means the temps go from 65 to 95, in what feels like one day. Wasn't bad when you're a wee kiddie. But as I got older, I did a 180 and realized that what I really looked forward to, was fall.

This fall is super exciting so far. My oldest's food business is doing really well, thanks in large part to working with an amazing local charity. This past Saturday, he made his first trip to the Blue Ridge Mountains for a Bulldogs Battling Breast Cancer event. It was held at Grumpy Old Men Brewing, which was a terrific little place with a great crowd!

Playing with the dry erase markers is really the only contribution I can make, lol. 

My 3 most favorite humans in the history of ever, working together. :) 

When we wasn't helping his brother, the wee one enjoyed keeping me entertained. :D
Coming up this Saturday we've got another BBBC event, but we're staying closer to home. We'll be hanging at our favorite local brewery, The Southern Brewing Company. Good times.

What else is happening this fall? Mostly, I'm running. Gonna feel a little like Forrest Gump, me thinks. On Sunday, I'm running the PNC 10 Miler.

Yeah. That's 10 miles. MILES. What the heck am I thinking?!

That's not even the craziest thing I'm doing. Provided I don't die during the 10 miler (kidding, not kidding, lol), Thanksgiving Day will find me running the Atlanta Half Marathon.

Whaaaaaaat?!?! ;)

The boys have a good bit of 4H stuff over the next few weeks. Braeden will have his first Junior weekend overnight thingy, which he's excited about. They both are doing DPAs and have to have their portfolios completed by the beginning of December. I suck at this, but thankfully their 4H coordinator is awesome and works her butt off for all of the 4Hers. Even with all of her effort, it still takes us weeks to get everything together, so that will be a concentrated effort until those portfolios are turned in.

That's about it for now. I need to go put away laundry. Thankfully, I can do that to music. In what I can only describe as "Braeden's way," Braeden has gotten me hooked on a supahfun new satellite radio station. Caliente (which is described as Tropical Latin Music Hits). He has loved his online Spanish language course, and found that station hoping to listen for and recognize words he's learned. He cracks me up. But I will say that the station is terrific. I love to dance, and Latin music = dancing. Your body almost can't help itself. Moves without thinking. ;)

Okey dokey. Leaving you with this, because as much as I love pumpkin, there's something else that I like so much, I feel it in my soul.

Minter. :)

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Stress level = maximum.

Why?

This happened. 


Yeah. My first born got his license.  

I knew it was going to be hard, but watching him drive away on his own that first time? To be honest, there is NO amount of wine that can calm those nerves, lol. He's very responsible and has no desire to be driving all the time though, so at least there's that. 

But...

Just... 

HE'S MY BAAAAAABYYYYYYYY. 


Ok, fine. I know I'm not the first or only mama that's gone through this. Moving on. 

That's really about all that's happened since last we spoke. The boys are in full swing with their fall schedule (art, nature science, 4H), so we're always on the road. Even with Bailey driving, there are some classes that I still take them to, because I take care of other errands while they're in class. As always, I'm so thankful that their homeschool curriculum is so flexible. Some days they log in before we leave the house, some days they don't get a chance to log in until the evening. Yay for slacker flexibility. ;) 

Before I leave, I want to give a shameless plug for my kiddo's business, Square Peg Gastronomy. The fall is a great time for him. His weekends are already full - two different events are coming up with Bulldogs Battling Breast Cancer which we're super excited about. It's a wonderful group of people, doing good and trying to make a difference. With my grandmother wrapping up her radiation treatment (breast cancer diagnosis earlier this year, already been through chemo), this cause is especially important to us now. Outside of those, he's planning on selling at some other local venues. 

Funny how that sheltered, unsocialized homeschooler (insert sarcasm, in case you missed that) has managed to start his own business and make some pretty amazing contacts in our community, huh? :P

There is no real reason for this one. But I can't stop giggling. We've already blown through Stranger Things twice and we pretty much agree with the doggy regarding Steve and Jonathan. Ha! 

Sunday, September 4, 2016

Stuffs and things...


Once again, I lose an entire month. August came. And August went. 

So what happened in August? Stuffs and things. 

This wasn't in August, it was at the end of the July, but Bailey got to attend 4H State Congress. This was a really big deal for him, and he got to go after winning 1st place at his regional DPA. Even though he didn't place at state, he had a terrific time, and it was an amazing experience for him. Plus, he gets another chance to go next year (if you win at state, you don't get to compete again as they consider it as you have "mastered"). 

My boy, in the news! ;) 

Was fortunate enough to see Def Leppard and REO Speedwagon with some lovely ladies. It was SO much fun! 


Oh yeah - I have a 17 year old and a 12 year old. 

What? When? How? 

I mean, yeah, of course I know how. But the when...man, that's the tough part. I'm pretty sure it was just yesterday that each them were wee little babies. Now one is grown (close enough to grown ), and the other is on the cusp of the dreaded teen years (actually not dreaded, Bailey has yet to go through the stereotypical teenage angsty years, no reason to think Braeden will). I really, truly can't wait to see to who these guys become as they can get older, but my heart just aches when I think of how much time has passed. 

Bailey age 3 months / age 17. 

Braeden age 1 day / age 12.
That's about it for August, really. We are getting ready to start their next school year. Normally, from year to year, nothing changes too drastically. We've been with Time4Learning for so long, and it's still working for us, so there's no need to change it up. BUT - this year, we are adding something new to their curriculum, and we're so excited about it! Time4Learning just announced Time4Languages, an online language learning add-on. Woot! Spanish for Braeden and French for Bailey.  

Alrighty. I'm out. Hope everyone will join me in my "bring on the fall" chants... ;)







Tuesday, July 5, 2016

The Peachtree Road Race

If you live in Georgia, you're more than likely aware of the Peachtree Road Race. Heck, even if you aren't from GA you may have heard of it...people come from all over to participate in the world's largest 10K.

Approximately 60k people come to run, jog, walk, wheel, parade through the ATL. This year was the PRR's 47th annual race. While a select few come to really race (several thousand dollars in prize money, plus the prestige of being the PRR winner), most of the people continue to participate because it's tradition. You get up at the butt crack of dawn, you sweat until you feel like you're hanging out in Satan's arse, you high-five a gazillion strangers, you pick up your coveted shirt and you head home for Independence Day festivities and foooooood.

Two years ago, the thought of me doing anything other than driving a 6.2 mile stretch was non-existent. I had just started my weight loss journey that summer and thought walking 2-3 miles, at what I now recognize was more of a stroll, was a big accomplishment. In all honestly, two years ago that was an accomplishment. As time progressed, I walked a little further, walked a little faster. Eventually I completed the couch to 5K program and in May 2015, mostly ran and completed my first 5K.

For whatever reason, once I realized that I could run, even if at a snail's pace, I set my eyes on the Peachtree. I had always heard about it, and it looked like fun. So back in January, I joined the Atlanta Track Club (to guarantee my spot in the race...didn't want to rely on the lottery) and on March 1, I registered for the 2016 PRR.

To say the experience was amazing, would be the biggest understatement evah. Absolutely incredible. From the start to the end, every single part was astounding to me. I wish I had thought about taking more pictures, but I was so focused on not dying, I didn't pull out my phone once I started. The event was code red, or whatever they call it. Basically, conditions were hazardous because of the heat and humidity. They weren't kidding. I have never sweat like that. EVER.

Anyway, people lined the streets to cheer us on, encourage us, and give high-fives and fist bumps. If there were 60k participants, there were probably twice that many spectators! It was the most inspiring thing....for that hour and 40 minutes (yep, that's how long it took me. nope, not ashamed. two reasons...I didn't die and there were 11,000 people that finished after me so I wasn't last, lol!) I truly believed that *I* was inspiring. That *I* was amazing. I can't say that I've ever felt like that before.

Here are a handful of photos that I did get.

My wave, getting ready to cross the start line.
Just before I got in line. 
After the finish!

My coveted shirt.
I will admit, without shame, that the probability of my wearing this shirt every day for the next week, is high. 

Ok, not directly related to my run, but aren't these cool?! Mizuno did a custom design of their Wave Rider 19, just for the Peachtree! I had to go to a fitness expo to pick up my bib over the weekend, before the race. When I saw these there, I naturally had to have them.
I'm sure you've heard enough about this now. I know, I go on and on. But for reals...fabulous experience that I can't wait to repeat.

What else has been going on around here? Not a lot to be honest. Bailey has been away all summer, either at a 4H function, or working a summer job in the kitchen at scout camp. I've not seen him much, and I hate it. He's having fun though. So it's all good. Braeden and I have gone to a movie, gone bowling and he's starting to run with me, so we're getting in some good time together.

As much as I'm a gadget junkie, I have totally embraced this paper planning thing. Started out in Moleskine doing bullet journaling. Next, tried a small ringed binder planner. Kinda a mix of a traditional calendar and bullet journaling. Thennnn (I know, I'm sick, I need to stop trying all the things) I decided to use an excellent coupon to try out a Happy Planner. Which has turned into an eclectic mix of traditional planner, bullet journal, and memory keeping. Who knew I would have so much fun with it all. Since I have a new appreciation for the analog, I'm also trying to work in some paper homeschool planners. I don't want to plan their lessons/activities necessarily, since T4L does that for me. But to put on paper their extras, and their strengths/weaknesses -- could be cool. We'll see if I can stick to that too. :)

Until next time...

Sunday, May 29, 2016

A litte bit of everything...

It's been a little while, and while I know I have a lot to say, my brain isn't going to function enough to let me put it all in any kind of understandable order. Bloodline season two dropped this weekend, and I've got some Netflixing to do.

So, let's do the random photo thing! :D

It's meeeeee!
You know we're on vacation when we eat ice cream as a meal and I remember to put sunscreen everywhere...or almost everywhere. :/

Braeden - Florida 2016

Bailey - Florida 2016

Saw this on the interwebs after Prince died. I chuckled whiiiiile kinda sorta weeping. 

Obligatory beach selfie.

My goofball boys. 

The hubs and I celebrated our 16th wedding anniversary. 

The vacay crew, at our most favorite place to get grubs. Meg O'Malley's. 
My Teagan. She had a horrific encounter with another dog, a fence and a collar. Staples and stitches, in the 3 digits (not posting pics of the injuries, cause icky).    :(
After she had the drains in her neck removed, we had to wrap her ears and neck so she should wouldn't shake and scratch and we could NOT get a cone of shame on her. 
My beautiful girl, right after all the staples and stitches were removed (just a few days ago, as of this post). There are some areas we have to watch, and she has some fluid pockets that we're keeping an eye on, but she's been healing so well! :) 
My boys! This was just this week...they each won 4H'er of the year awards, Braeden at the cloverleaf level and Bailey at the senior level.

I think that's about it. Or rather, that's all the photos I had on my phone, lol.

This summer is SO packed for my guys!

Braeden is attending 4H summer camp and has a few 4H summer classes that he's signed up for. He will wrap up his school year sometime in June, and in July I'm hoping to have him take a middle school writing class. Fingers crossed that happens as planned.

Bailey is having all of his wisdom teeth cut out, is teaching a 4H class, has TWO state level 4H competitions to attend (they are really the same event, but broken up into two parts) aaaaand decided that he was going to take a job in the kitchen at scout camp this summer.   o.O

I bought a paper planner to try and keep up with all of this. A. Paper. Planner. Those that know and love me, understand why this is noteworthy. I hate paper planners. But my trusty phone calendar wasn't helping me remember it all. Boo. Let's hope the new planner does actually become a helpful tool, rather than a fancy schmancy doodle pad. :D

Ok. Tapping out. Remember that whole Bloodline/Netlfix thing? That neeeeds to happen now. ;)

Until next time...