Saturday, December 25, 2010

Just one more time

 The past few couple of years, my many of my extended family... on both of my parents' sides, have gathered in Midway to go tubing.  This was our second year of doing it on Christmas Eve.  Hayden had to work this year, so Aspen and I went solo.   This was her first year of LOVING it.  The first ride she had not realized you had to raise your bum as you slide down the hill, so she had a bit of a bumpy ride and was crying.  It didn't deter her.  The second ride was much better, and after that it was "Let's do it again" or "just one more time".  It was a warm and sunny.  It was fun to see some seldom seen family.

Me, Aunt Sheela, Sidney and Aspen

Friday, December 17, 2010

Back on the Bandwagon

I started charting my exercise/weight/calories on May 5th using  I thought I had been doing a good deal to stay trim... eating yogurt and a banana for breakfast, low calorie lunch, and running.  Once I started counting calories, I started realizing how many I consume between 3pm and dinner... and at dinner... and afterwards.  

fast forward 6 months...
I have dropped 21 pounds since then, even getting as close as 2 pounds away from my goal-weight.  The weight when I met Hayden (when I thought I was heavy... ha ha ha). 
I found different snacks from 3pm til dinner.
I  exercised consistently (which gives me bonus calories to "spend").
I gave up soda (even my diet coke... sob sob) and any drink other than water.
I ate smaller portions.
I logged it all.

Large: April, 2010... 196 lbs.  Small: 6 months later @175 lbs.

Well, as the cycle goes... and as it has gone through the history of time... 
I get comfortable where I am... 
get lazy, 
and start to let things slide.  
I stood on the scale this week.
It scared me.
I'm back on the bandwagon.
Back doing what works.
Counting calories... exercising... eating better.

Now what to do with all these darn Christmas treats :)

Thursday, December 16, 2010

Why I do what I do...

I ride east every other Friday but if I had it my way
The day would not be wasted on this drive.
And i want so bad to hold you
Son there's things I haven't told you
Your dad and me just couldn't get along.

So I'll drive
And I think about my life
And wonder why, That I slowly die inside
Everytime I turn that truck around,
right at the Georgia line
and I count the days and the miles back home to you 
on that Highway 20 ride.

A day might come and you'll realize
that if you could see through my eyes
There was no other way to work it out
And a part of you might hate me
But son please don't mistake me 
For a mom that didn't care at all.

And I'll drive
And I'll think about my life
And wonder why, That I slowly die inside
Everytime I turn that truck around,
right at the Georgia line
and I count the days and the miles back home to you 
on that Highway 20 ride.

So when you drive
And the years go flying by
I hope you smile
If I ever cross your mind
It was a pleasure of my life
And I cherished every time
And my whole world,
It begins and ends with you
On that Highway 20 ride....

Tuesday, December 7, 2010

sometimes you just have to RUN!!! (faster)

This race was originally supposed to be me and my running buddy.  She got injured... so I was flying solo on this one (however, her husband did run... and kept me company before the race).  
My previous best time was 2:05.  I've been doing good lately just to keep my pace under a 10 minute mile pace, which is 6mph.  Lately, I've been running with Jocelyn, who has kept my pace fast, and my motivation high.  She ran the Halloween half the weekend before my race, in 2:00.18.  
Oh man... I'd love to get that score.
Without any speed-work, and not many tempo runs, I was pretty sure it would be out of my reach to beat her time, let alone my previous best.  
 There were a couple people I scoped out before the race, one that was wearing basketball shoes, practice jersey and basketball shorts.  Dude... If I lose to that guy... I'll quit running.  (yeah... I need to figure out how to tone down my competitive nature). I started off feeling pretty good.  I had made a quick tempo playlist to run to, and had my phone app (my tracks) that informed me every 5 minutes what my distance, time, and pace was.   The first time I hear it, it said my pace was 7.4 mph.
7.4 mph????
That's an 8:06 pace!!!
Dang... talk about motivation.  I kept it going, but as I approached mile 8, I was down to 7.2 (8:20 pace).  The hardest miles are always 11-13, and this was no exception.  I knew I totally had the potential to beat my previous record, but I was BEAT... out of gas!  I was dragging myself at mile 12, even walking up a little rise of a hill.  I texted Hayden and asked him what the clock time was at the finish line, when I had 1/2 mile left.  
I tried to PUSH myself to get there faster, or pass someone, but I had nothing left.  Even the finish line was forever away, and I just remembering looking up at the clock thinking it was getting ready to switch over to 2 hours, and realizing what I thought was 1:59 was 1:56.  WOO HOO!!  Not only had I bested my previous time... by 8 minutes, I had pushed through to beat Jocelyn's time (which is a big deal to me because she is fast!).  My final pace was 8:59 per mile. 
How?  I don't know... because since I have been home, I find it hard to manage a 9:40 pace, let alone anything under 9.  It's crazy that I did it.

It was by far the MOST beautiful run I have ever done... short or long runs.  I am hoping it is on my annual list of runs to participate in.  It was especially beautiful because my two daughters and my hubby were waiting for me at the finish line.  We were able to stay at my parent's house in St. George, and had a great time hanging out together.  Thanks for nursing my poor sore muscles back to health Hayd!

Monday, December 6, 2010


Yeah, so I'm running a couple months behind schedule.
It occurred to me this week that I, in all reality, could post a picture and a small snippet without having to write a book.  So that is what I'll do for awhile... at least until I am a bit more caught up.
Halloween was a highly anticipated event this year for Aspen.  She liked to play pretend "trick or treating" and come begging for treats or prizes from me weeks before the holiday even arrived.  She would insist on wearing her costume as clothes for the day, as pajamas for the night, or to change in to once she got home for the day.  I'm mean, and didn't let her.

It was a cold but beautiful morning.  I got all ready to run from Ephraim to Manti and back in preparation for my half marathon quickly approaching, but realized I had forgotten my shoes.  Let me just say, there are not many great running shoe spots in Ephraim (or neighboring towns).  We dropped $80 on a pair of shoes that were pretty much the only ones in the store that resembled running shoes in my size, and I took off for Manti.

New shoes + 8 miles + trail running = DEAD DOG tired, sore knees (and blisters on the feet!).
Needless to say, I only made it TO Manti, and a mile back toward Hayden's parents' house before calling in the rescue crew to come pick me up.

We were able to get a few houses for trick or treating, but for the most part, it was really too cold to do much more than that.  We were directed to a trunk or treat, and definitely made the most out of our time with that stop.

Aspen would NOT let anyone touch her bucket of candy... but when she wasn't looking, everyone was helping themselves to her treats.  Dad tried to hide her bucket... which led to a small drama-queen incident.

The problem with this holiday is that the next day she wanted to go do Halloween all over again.
Thank heavens for an annual event!!

Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Thanksgiving in Pictures.

Thanksgiving was in Roosevelt this year.  We had the boys this year (but not Morgan).  We went a day early and spent some time with mom and dad.  Dinner was at their church house, and Grandma Toni, Nate (and family), Darren (and family), Garrett and Audrey (and family) were in attendance. 

Aspen's favorite part of the entire trip was the treadmill and Grandpa Lynn's horses.  She did not want to get off the horse she was riding with Wade, even though it was bitter cold outside.
 Playing cars with Grandpa and Garrett.

Wrestling with the cousins.

 One of the things I the miss most about living away from Roosevelt... dad's horses.

The 2 horse-men and 1 wanna be horse-girl.
Treadmill chick!

Thursday, November 4, 2010

Cross Country Success!!!

It's been hard to find the time or patience to sit and jot a few things down in the past few weeks... but some momentous things have happened.

Region and state cross country were held in Salt Lake City.  For me it was a long anticipated, somewhat dreaded couple of days because of how Brenden's health has been faring.  I didn't have much to worry about.  He placed second in region to his own teammate (and only by 1/2 second).  The team easily took 1st place in region.  Even Wade beat his previous best time by more than a minute.  I'm pretty sure Brenden did so well because of his amazing aerodynamic shaved legs.  From the pictures he sent, it looked like he had more hair on the ground as he was shaving it off than Hayden does when I cut his hair.  I posted his amazing leg picture on facebook, but he demanded it be taken down, so as not to scare off his fan club members.

State was at Sugarhouse Park, and it was a beautiful day.  Brenden had a good start to the race, and was running about 16th in the pack for most of the race.  For much of the season, his teammates stayed pretty close together in a run, with one of three pushing through at the end.  With one mile left, he was the third among the Bear River team members.  His goal this year was to PLACE in the top 10... and (secretly), to beat the team member that had out-run him at region.   
He met both of his aspirations.
He placed 9th overall... and in the last 50 yards of the race, he turned on the speed and passed his teammate.  
The last 10 yards to the finish.  His teammate was not happy about getting passed.
With teammates taking 5th, 9th, 10th, 12th positions... we knew the team would fare well.  Bear River had never taken a state championship before.  Moments later it was announced they were 2010 STATE CHAMPS!!!  I was glad I had ran to the fence by the finish line, because I was in the middle of the celebration that occurred when it was announced.  
Cheering, hugging, high fives, the team cheer, smiles, phone calls, spraying of water over each other, and whooping and hollering.  
So much fun to watch.  
So much fun to be part of the excitement.

So much fun to see Brenden accomplish HIS goals, and have this to top it all off.
After the getting his award for placing in the top 10, the team accepted the trophy for 1st place.  
Brenden was funny.  
More than once he said, "I can't stop smiling.  My cheeks hurt".

This has instilled the winning spirit in him.  He is determined to have success in track this spring.  He is going to be running indoor track this winter, and has already had me send him a couple cds with running songs on it.  He could do well this spring.  If he keeps up his motivation and training.

NICE JOB guys... what a great way to end the cross country season!

Monday, October 18, 2010


This is the latest fascination for Aspen.
and MORE ducks!

There isn't a bath that she has taken that she didn't insist on  getting every single one of her 15 little ducks into the tub with her.

Friday, October 8, 2010

Stubborn, stubbborn mother

Brenden has had a frustrating cross country season this year, and I have had a frustrating time watching his frustration.  Ever since his crash at state last year (at which time I learned he had had a previous "crash" at a race a week before), he has struggled to improve, finish strong, and have enough energy to finish the race at 100%.  His dad decided after state last year that Brenden had just not eaten well... and had succumb to the stress of the event.  I knew it was more than that.  

Two weeks into the season, he had another less than stellar performance, throwing up afterward, and having several other underclassmen on his team, finish before him.  He was frustrated and decided that he needed to cut of his text messaging plan and strictly enforce his own bedtime.  His eating was also more closely monitored.  Needless to say... not much changed.  I finally started doing my own research on some of his symptoms and running issues teenagers have had.  The best guess I could come to based on this information was an onset of Type 1 diabetes.  At his next race, I brought fluid and honey that most runners who have type 1 diabetes take before a race.  He rolled his eyes, told me I was crazy, and sipped the glucose water and pretended to gag when he ate the honey.   His race was ok that day, but not 100%.  He admitted that he is afraid to give 100% because he is afraid of the possibility of his "crash" happening again.  He said his race was better because he did better eating and sleeping.

Talking to his coach and his dad wasn't helpful.  They were insistent and adamant that eating and sleeping was the problem.  I'm sorry... kids don't have a violent seizure-like run, throw up for an hour afterward, and don't remember the last mile of the race (or 30 minutes after the race) because they didn't eat pasta and got to bed at midnight.
What more could I do?
No one was listening to me, and he wasn't at my house long enough for me to get him in to get looked at.

Fast forward two weeks.  
Two weeks and two races later.  
Two CRAPPY races later.

While talking to Brenden on the phone last weekend:
"Hey mom... can you send me some of that stuff you brought to my race that time?"
Not sure if he was grasping at straws or if it really helped, but I dropped 2 races worth of honey and glucose in the mail.  
Even if his coach and dad weren't listening to me... Brenden knew there was something more going on.
I called him Wednesday afternoon.  
No answer.  
They had had a region meet at Morgan High and I was anxious to hear how he had done. 
I got a four word text message reply.
I called for further details, and amidst the roar of the team noise from the bus I was informed that he won the race that day, and that he felt GREAT.  
I screamed.  I cried.  I jumped for joy.

Now we are faced with a crossroads.  
The fact that it helped means that we will be making a trip to get his blood tested next time he is down here for more than a day.
The fact that it helped means I am not just a crazy paranoid mother.  
The fact that it helped makes me happy for his last most important races of the year: Region & State.
The fact that it helped makes me angry that no one would listen to me and get him in for more tests.

Mother's intuition... and a whole lot of prayer.
Thank heavens for answers (even if only a temporary fix)

Thursday, October 7, 2010

facebook: the condensed version of life.

Lately life has been so crazy, that I haven't had time for the camera... for blogging... the only thing I seem to have for is texting in life updates to facebook.  So instead of pictures, I took my updates and decided to expound on them since I have a minute.

October 2:     Dear weatherman... please don't tease me and get me excited for five days of thunderstorms only to inform me tomorrow afternoon that you were just kidding.  

We have had unseasonably warm weather for weeks.  Low 90's... even though it is October.  I'm just so ready for cooler weather.  I fear we will go from 90's to 40's, totally missing out on the best season of all: FALL!

October 1:    GO AGGIES !!

 Yeah... it's that time of year again.  The time when I root for whomever is playing BYU in football.  And when they play Utah State (my alma mater) I get to cheer FOR my Aggies and vote NOT for BYU.  Gotta love it when USU actually wins (yeah... that's right:  31-16).  Last time this happened was in 1993, and I was actually in attendance at that game in Logan.

September 29:  The only thing standing between me and Friday is my crazy horribly long long day of parent teacher conferences tomorrow.

Every year it is a bittersweet day.  It's long.  I talk so much, that by the end of the day that my tongue hurts.  The only thing that redeems the 6 hour long sitting marathon is hearing how kids are changing their attitude towards math, or doing better this year than they have before.  ALMOST makes up for it, I should say.  No more PTC's til next spring.  YAY!

September 26:   does a runny nose on a 3 year old count as "sick" enough for me to stay home with her tomorrow??

Yeah... well, I went back to school that Monday morning, but she was worse than she had been.  I planned on taking Tuesday off to take her to the Dr. but we managed to sneak in an appointment on Monday.  My suspicions were correct.  She had a bladder infection (which I suspected because she had been wetting the bed).  Apparently kids don't have the same symptoms as adults do.  She had been complaining about back and stomach pain for over a week.  She also had had a constant runny nose for 2 weeks.  Allergies.  Who could have guessed?  An allergy pill each night, and she hasn't had any problems since. 

September 24: I really really need a weekend without my hubby working cause aspen and I miss him.

Hayden's schedule and working situation lately has been crazy.  Sometimes things always don't go as planned, and jobs have to be moved or pushed back.  This has been our lives the past several weeks.  His employee he has had since December has decided to move out of state.  On top of double booked jobs, he has been dealing with new employees (who don't share the same love of perfectionism that he does), the stress of an employee that is still (barely) working but would rather be gone, late nights and early mornings for the past 15 days straight, and a customer that wants everything extra added to her floor and no desire to increase her bill.  It makes me sad watching him, because there isn't much I can do to help other than what I do:  have a clean house, fix good food, rub his back, and bathe Aspen at nights. 

September 22: 80's day tomorrow at school and I'm gonna ROCK IT (ok, so I never really rocked it in high school, but my students don't know that). Putting together an outfit is what I do to entertain myself when Hayden has to work late :)

No words are necessary... A picture is worth so much more than a thousand words on this one... and 3 pictures???  well... I'm speechless.  The kids LOVED it.

September 20: If a dishwasher wasn't so expensive to fix, and washing dishes by hand didn't SUCK... I'd just let it stay broken

I bumped the inside roof of my dishwasher shutting it (with too many dishes loaded, of course), and managed to break off a part.  After running the dishwasher with no results twice, I realized what had happened.  The first day I washed all the dishes by hand... an entire OVERLOADED dishwasher full.  It took a mere 80 minutes.  By day 4 of this, I declared a strike, and informed Hayden he was either taking over dish duty, or we were eating out.   Needless to say, the dishwasher guy was at our house by 5pm that day.  To replace a $20 part and put it in, our bill came to $144. 

September 19:  Murphy's law... the only time my OUTDOOR cat decides to come INSIDE is after he has fallen in a bucket of gas/oil mix at my neighbors house. WHAT A MESS I have!

I was putting Aspen to bed one evening and kept noticing a strong smell of oil.  Thinking it was something from Hayden's work, I didn't give it much thought.   I looked at Aspen's bedspread, and noticed it was covered in black grease in an area about 12 inches square.   I pulled it off and smelled it.  Yep.  Gas/oil smell.  I immediately began the cleaning process, growing more furious by the minute, thinking it was something Hayden had sat on her bed, or brought in without realizing it.  Then I noticed the back porch.  Same grease spot.  The newly recovered cedar chest in my living room.  Same grease spot.   

The only thing that calls all of those places "home" is our outside cat, Mazda.  I searched him out, and sure enough... from his waist down to the tip of his tail, he was COVERED in gas/oil mix.   We searched the garage, the shed, the yard... without any sign of were it would have come from.  Finally Hayden went next door, and discovered a large open container full of the icky substance.  He had drained his boat oil into a pan once he thought it had gas in it.  The cat must have jumped into it before he knew what was in it.  I felt bad for thinking that Hayden had done it.  We gave our cat a couple of good doses of water and dish soap... which he was NOT happy about.  After a bit of cleaning on the rest of the mess, the bedspread looks almost like new, the porch I don't care about, and the cedar chest cover will more than likely have to be replaced. 

September 9:  Nothing like doing a load of laundry and finding an EMPTY bottle of fingernail polish mixed in with the clothes when I'm moving it into the drying.

If it isn't a cat making a mess, it is a 3 year old.  She has been in love with having to have her fingers constantly dolled up.  Her favorite has been a little bottle of polish she found in a glass star shaped container.  She liked it so much, in fact, that without my knowledge she put it in her pants pocket.  Thank heavens the brunt of the HOT PINK polish was absorbed by the white pants.  It helped that it was a load of hot water clothes with bleach in it.  Only SOME of Hayden's underwear turned pink.  Only some. 

September 3:  Was about 2 cars away from being in a rollover today... makes you look at life a little differently the rest of the day.

Funny how life has those moments of making you stop and think.  The flow of traffic through the construction corridor flows at about 70 mph even though the signs all say 55 mph.  On my way home from school the other day a car came speeding up to my bumper (as I was driving with the flow of traffic).  I moved over to let him pass, and he quickly passed and began passing other people through two lanes of traffic.  I estimate that he was going 80-85.   He attempted to pass another car, and move back into the fast lane, but when he realized he didn't have enough room to do so, he swerved back into his lane.  This caused his SUV to fishtail, his car to go sideways, clipping another car in the next lane, and both vehicles to roll multiple times off the road and onto the embankment of the freeway.  This is all happening only 3 or 4 cars in front of me at the time.  I watch as papers, car parts, and a person go flying through the air as if watching a cartoon of the wreck.  Had I been insistent on not having him pass, could it have been me?  Had I been 10 seconds faster in leaving from school, it could have been me he hit as he rolled.  The realization that life can change so quickly had me shaken up for the rest of the day.  I did more playing that afternoon, more praying that night, and more thanksgiving for the things I have in my life.  It's too bad we forget so quickly.  I take things for granted much too often.

Thursday, September 16, 2010

I LOVE football!

I love fall.  I love wearing sweaters... love cleaning out my garden (well, not THE cleaning out part... but the NOT having to tend to it part).  I love running in the morning crisp air.  I love sleeping in a cool bedroom with a big fluffy comforter on top of me.  But what I REALLY love about fall (but don't get to do near enough) is attend football games.

Not just watch it on TV.  That doesn't count.  On TV I miss out on the roar of the crowd, the smell of all the wonderful stadium foods, the craziness of the fans, the cheerleaders leading the entire stadium in a cheer, and hearing the marching band (especially if we get to sit right next to them).

We went to meet Hayden after one of his bids in SLC, and saw all the Utah fans headed up to the game.  Wade hadn't been before, and I love to go... and Hayden loves to please... so we rounded up some tickets and went to the game.

AHHHHH... what to say about it?  It was wonderful (Utah won... that helped)!  Wade loved it.  He loved it so much he is even considering changing his after high school plans to include a college with a football team (instead of going directly to a culinary school).  Aspen even loved it... until she fell asleep in Hayden's lap.  She had an accident while she was asleep, and I had to go walking to have my pants dry off.  When Aspen woke up, she was not happy about her condition.  By the time Wade and I returned from our walk, Aspen was dressed from head to toe in a Utah cheerleader outfit.  Not sure if that was because it was the only item in the spirit store her size or if she requested it.

After the game, Wade and I loitered a bit on purpose.  Do you know how many Coke reward points there are lying around at the end of a football game????  A billion.  Well, maybe a few less then that, but not by much.   By the time we left, Wade had acquired 42 soda lids and I had 34.  Not too shabby for free points. 

Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Welcome to the "team" Wade

Brenden and I are glad to have Wade along in the running community.  He got "conned" into joining the cross country team this year (whether by peer pressure, bribery, or whatever... it worked).  He was pretty excited when he started on some new routes around my house this summer, and was able to see his time improve.  One 3 mile route was 28 minutes long on his first run, 27 by the second time, and 24 by the third time.  That's pretty good improvement in such a short period of time.  I think it was motivation for him that this was going to be a good year.  
Until I sent him out on a run just before 8pm with some basic directions.
Apparently TOO basic (or not enough information).
The run was 3.5 miles and after 45 minutes with no Wade, I started to worry.  
Got in my car and headed out to look for him.
  It's pitch black, Wade has no phone, and is horrible with directions.
No luck finding him.
Came home... found him.
I drove around with Wade so he could show me the run, what went wrong and talk to me about it.  Ironically, I had offered to ride along with him on this run before he headed out, but he declined.
Scary moment.  
Lessons learned for next time.
Wade's ran last Friday at Murray Park.  I get crazy nervous when they run.  Wade looked good at the start, and gave a cute little smirk when we yelled at him as he went by.  He loves having us there. 

He had a great race... and beat his last time by 2 minutes, finishing with a 22:31.  PR! PR! PR!
It is so much fun to know I will be able to show up to running events for the next 4 years.  So proud of your decision to become a runner. 
Thanks for making me not look so slow when you had to run with me this summer.
Keep up the good work!
Love you, Mom

Tuesday, September 14, 2010


Grandpa Frank has been anxious to get the boys, Wade and Austin (cousin), out to West desert to launch rockets for quite awhile.  The rocket club launch that they originally planned on attending got rained out, so we planned our own outing.

The flies were out in force... which sent Aspen and I into the truck while the boys launched.  Grandpa had to have the biggest engines he could find for these rockets, so when they launched... they LAUNCHED!  (which translates to walking and driving over acres and acres of sagebrush looking for lost rockets).
Aspen's wink
No rockets were lost or damaged in the process.  We had so much fun!  Thanks Grandpa Frank!

Thursday, September 9, 2010


Brenden is a senior.  Brenden is a SENIOR????  CRAZY.  When did he get older?  Where is my little boy?  
What a great young man he has become.  This year he is senior class senator, cross country team captain, he plays drums in a band (Band of Stability), and plays drums for jazz band at the high school.   
He doesn't say much, usually giving me one word answers (or one syllable grunts as answers), but he is also a kid with a lot of heart.  He tries to be cool, but really, he wears his heart on his sleeve.
We had a great photographer take his pictures.  Thanks Amy Huntington!  She always does such a great job and is so easy to work with.

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