Tuesday, May 26, 2009

More Moab

We are in Moab, UT for our third annual week after Memorial Day trip. We haven't even been here 24 hours and have packed in quite a few activities. I went for a short run as soon as we got here (HAD to stretch my legs after the long drive). Our hotel is near a great bike path, and Jack joined me on his sprint bike. He is good to have on runs as he is distracting and alway wants to race which is a good way to get in some sprints. Moab has gotten more rain then usual and there was plenty of mud on the path and then on Jack. He loved it!

My parents joined us on our trip this year, so Matt and I took advantage of the built-in babysitters and took a run together this morning. Later the whole crew went to Arches National Park for a few short hikes, then back to the hotel for naps (except kids... gosh I miss the bygone days of napping!), and later we'll head up to Uncle Mark's campsite for dinner and s'mores. Yum!

Right now it is time to go join the kids in the pool!

Want to see photos from last year's trip? Campsite, and climbing (I'm not climbing this year because my all-time favorite guide Amanda isn't here). Already can't wait to get home and download my current phots.

Sunday, May 17, 2009

Incline

It was an absolutely gorgeous Colorado day, and unfortunately poor Matt had to work.  He came home late afternoon, and I had a babysitter come over so that we could go out and enjoy
 the evening together.  We decided to head over to Manitou Springs to do the Incline.  The Incline is an old cog railway that is now a popular place to exercise.  It is about a mile up (almost straight up!) and 4 miles back down the trail.  It is killer.  Even obviously fit athletes are huffing and puffing on the incline.  I usually get off at the half way point, but tonight I made it all the way to the top!  I had to take several long rests (Matt would keep going up and down while I rested.  Showoff.) mostly because I am a wimp when it comes to any exertion (I always have an excuse... too cold, too hot, too windy, too hungry, too tired, I'm going to puke, my legs hurt, my knees hurt, my lungs hurt, my right pinkie finger hurts...).  Currently you have to trespass to do the incline (although it is always crowded), but hopefully that is soon to change.

View from the highway. See that gouge in the mountain?  That's the incline.

View from the incline.  See how steep it is??

Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Hummingbirds

This morning as I was getting ready for the day, I looked out my bathroom window and saw a little hummingbird quenching his thirst on some blossoms high up in one of our Aspen trees.  I have designated a quiet area of our yard to be the bird corner.  I've already 
moved a bird bath that came with our new yard and have a couple of our bird feeders up.  I'd like to get a few more feeders and a couple bird houses (maybe even one of those that sticks to windows!) It didn't occur to me until this morning to put out our hummingbird feeder, and I'm not even sure where it is in the garage. As soon as I find it, I am going to whip up a batch of hummingbird syrup.  It is super easy to make and much less expensive than buying it from the store.  Plus it has no additives such as artificial coloring.  And never use honey or artificial sweeteners.

I got this recipe from Matt's aunt and uncle that live in Arizona.  They live on the ranch where Matt and I got married, and they have gazillions of hummingbirds.  Seriously.  I've never seen so many hummingbirds in one place.  If you stand underneath the feeders, they'll buzz all around your head.  At the ranch, they go through some crazy amount of hummingbird syrup like a gallon or more a day (the photo is from one of multiple feeders at the ranch).  I just like to make the syrup in small batches, and I change it every few days even if it isn't all gone.  Hummingbirds apparently like to be fresh.

Hummingbird Syrup
Dissolve 1 cup cane sugar (make sure it is CANE sugar, not beet sugar) into 4 cups of boiling water.  Stir over heat until every last granule is dissolved then remove from heat and cool.  Poor into hummingbird feeder and let the birds enjoy!

Monday, May 11, 2009

First 5K This Spring.

Like I said in the previous post, I ran a Mother's Day 5K on Sunday. It was a fun run in that no one (or at least not many) of the runners took it too seriously. It was the first year for this particular race so the number of participants was fairly low (maybe 60?), and they were mostly women. Women got a 10 second advantage for every child in the home, and the guys had to start 10min after the women (woohoo!). The end had "obstacles" that most moms have to face every day... bicycles, high chairs, bouncy seats, etc. in the middle of the trail which made for a nice distraction at the end. I was totally leading the race at about the 2 mile mark*. I'm pretty sure that I finished in the top 20. Maybe even in the top 15? (UPDATE: I placed 11th!!) Probably the last time I'll ever see a finish like that! LOL

I have a personal speed goal that would like to accomplish by the local Race for the Cure 5K in September. A few weeks ago I was worried about running at all because I bruised the bottom of my foot and had to take about 10 days off (Matt actually thought I had a stress fracture but I decided to wait it out a bit before getting an x-ray. Seems it was just a bruise.). Now I am back to feeling confident that I can achieve my goal. Just need to figure out which race is next (Matt and I want to run it together).

*okay, okay... so the leaders took a wrong turn and had to double back. I happened to be in the perfect position when everyone realized what was going on. I was the first person to take the correct route and so was in the lead for at least 45 sec!  Sometimes it pays to be slow.

Mother's Day

I remember getting emails before Earth Day discussing the idea of NOT celebrating Earth Day because "every day is Earth Day" or some other similar reasoning. And while I agree that we should be thankful for the Earth every day, I couldn't help but think that the same reasoning could be applied to Mother's Day. I certainly think that mothers should be appreciated every day of the year, but I also like having a special day to celebrate being a mother.

My Mother's Day was close to perfect. I woke up early and headed out to a 5K race despite the cool, overcast weather (I'll try to write about my race later today). I came home to still-sleepy children and lots of hugs and kisses. We had some lazy time then got dressed and headed to the zoo for Mother's Day brunch. The zoo was a bit more crowded than I expected, but most of the visitors were not there for brunch. The food was good and one of the peacocks was happily showing his colors to all the brunchers.
Back at home, Matt took Jack out for a run (Jack rides his bike) while Kate and I spent some quality time sewing a simple skirt/shirt outfit for her (I'll do another post on that as well). Later, Matt made me my late afternoon tea while I watched Sound of Music with the kids on TV. Matt also made us a fabulous dinner (but set off all the fire alarms in the house in the process! LOL) and put the kids to bed. All in all it was just right.
Hope you also had a splendid Mother's Day.
PS - got the shirt Jack is wearing for 75 cents at the ARC! I'm becoming an amazing thrift store shopper. At least for kids clothes...

Wednesday, May 06, 2009

More Cuteness

Kate loves babies of all kinds... humans, animals, plants, etc. She always lets out a little shreik when she sees something tiny and often pretends that she is caring for random newborn animals. She'll come up to me with her hands cupped and say, "Want to hold this baby (fill in the blank... bird, puppy, kitten, rhino...) that just came out of its mommy's tummy?" I pretend along and gently hold and coo to the newborn. Jack plays along sometimes but usually isn't as involved. When he does play, he usually pretends to drop the baby. He would really rather be crashing his cars.

Like most boys, Jack also has a very gentle side. This morning while I am fixing breakfast, Jack comes up to me with one of his small cars cupped in his hands. In a high-pitched, yet hushed tone he says, "Look, Mommy, it is a newborn baby car. Isn't it cute? It just came out of the car mommy's tummy. It can't even drive yet."

Monday, May 04, 2009

Jack Cuteness

Just have to record for myself. Jack's current really cute saying is "plug out" instead of "unplug." As in, "Mommy, can I plug out the toaster for you?"

Moms' Weekend Away

The moms in our playgroup have been talking about doing a weekend away for a long time, and we finally did it last weekend. We escaped up into the mountains for two nights away. I wish I could tell you all the wonderful things we did, but we really did a lot of nothing. Which was wonderful. There was some knitting and crocheting, some reading, some surfing the internet, some shopping, a couple unsuccessful attempts to geocache, lots of eating (Mexican food out, cheese and chocolate fondue in, Shannon's super yummy brownies, Twizzlers, etc.), lots of wine drinking, lots of sleeping, lots of planning for crafts and lots of good talking. But there were no children and no husbands. There were also no pictures. Not sure why we never got around to pictures... next time. Hopefully next time will be very soon.

And we sure missed the moms who couldn't make it because of nursing babies, stuffed noses, and those darn jobs! Next time!