Pieces of Me

Sunday, June 20, 2010

Run Like the Wind, Bullseye!

I admit it.  I’m a sucker.  I’m sentimental, and I cry at the movies. 

Never in my life did I expect to cry at Toy Story 3. 

But I did.  Like a baby.

I’m pretty sure it has to do with me being a mom. 

I think I’ve been waiting for this movie just as impatiently as my children.  Cayden was so excited about it coming to the theater.  We’ve been watching Toy Story and Toy Story 2 nonstop in our home.  He plays Toy Story throughout the day.  In fact, yesterday morning, I caught him in the playroom with Mr. Potato Head.  I asked him, “Cayden, are you playing Mr. Potato Head?”

His response to me? “No, mom.  I’m playing Toy Story.” 

I asked him, “With who?”

And he reaches down and says, “With Mr. and Mrs. Potato Head AND Buzz and Woody!”  He pulled out his figures and then went back to playing.  So cute.

It was a surprise that we were going to the movie.  And a last minute decision.  We were going to wait until next week.  I’m so glad we didn’t. 

Arriving an hour early, Cayden ran around like a crazy person, super excited to be at the theater.  The movie started, and the excitement continued.  When Woody lost his hat, Cayden’s Woody toy had to lose his hat.  When he got it back, we had to put Cayden’s Woody’s hat back on his head.  This was DURING the movie.

When Andy decides what’s going to college and what isn't, Cayden calls out, “Mommy, can I take my Woody and Buzz to college?”

The movie had it’s scary moments.  And Cayden was in my lap, at some point on top of my head, I’m pretty certain.”

In the end, it turns out happy, and I got all sentimental and cried about how much I love watching my kids be happy.  And for some other reasons, too, but I don’t want to give away the movie.  But at some point, Cayden called out, “I LOVE MY TOYS!” 

And as soon as it was over he asked, “Can we go and get the DVD now?”  Poor guy.  I wonder how long we have to wait for that to come out on video.

Monday, June 14, 2010

I was warned

I wanted to start running again.  I can’t say I was excited about it, but I was determined. 
New running shoes?  Check. 
Black Eyed Peas Album on iPod?  Check.
RunKeeper on iPhone updated?  Check.
Dog in tow?  Up early enough?  Check.  1/2 check (it was really too late to run).
At 8:00 am on Sunday, June, 13, I headed out for my 1st run since April.  My 1st real run.  Not just me running to see if I can go a mile.  But a full on, warm up, workout, cool down on a new route. 
I felt empowered.  I pushed myself to actually run faster than I have before.  Usually I stroll.  Not yesterday.  I pushed myself on the runs, and even on the walks.  Until I got through the workout.  And realized I still had at least 1/2 a mile to go before I got home.  So instead of heading home, I decided to take the long way.  I trudged along.  And I mean trudged, sometime walking only 2 mph. 
But I made it.   2.1 miles around the neighborhood.  In 36 minutes.  I was proud of myself.  Proud that I pushed myself that hard.  Proud that on my first day out, my time was actually decent.  Not great, but certainly better than it had been in the months prior.
The heat got to me.  My head started pounding.  That I could handle.  I pushed my water and drank a little caffeine.  And made it through the day.  I took, not one, but two, hot showers yesterday, impressed that I wasn’t hurting.
And then it hit me.  At 2 in the morning, my entire body freaked out.  My legs were aching, my feet were killing me, my back locked up, and I was starving.  I took some motrin, drank a glass of water, and forced myself to go back to sleep.  I woke up. . . it was 3 am. . . back to sleep. . . up at 4, 5, and 6:30.  Finally deciding sleep wasn’t going to continue, I got up at 7:30 and started on dinner for the evening and getting ready for the day. 
Sent a message to my running buddy, Traci.  She called me and said, “Don’t just sit today.  Get moving.  Walk around.  Don’t go for a walk, but stay on your feet.”  I had plans all morning so that wasn’t going to be difficult.  When we got home, Crystal came over for lunch, and we hung out.  She left, and I decided to mow the backyard.  Took me longer than usual, but I got it done.   When I was done, I came inside to check my email. 
I make one mistake. 
I sat down.
And got stuck.  It took me a good 10 minutes to get my body up.  Literally.  Not just sat for 10 minutes.  Get UP.
But I was warned.
And I’ll go running tomorrow morning.  This time a little earlier (okay 1 1/2 hours earlier is the plan.  We’ll see if that works out).

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Starting Over Running Round 1

Start Time
8:03 am
End Time
8:23 am
h : m : s
Avg. Pace
per mi
Avg. Speed

Workout Continued
Start Time
8:24 am
End Time
8:40 am
h : m : s
Avg. Pace
per mi
Avg. Speed

Saturday, June 12, 2010

Time to Run

I’ve decided it’s time for me to start running again.  I’m doing fairly well with eating right – clean, organic food most of the time.  My family has actually learned how to eat out this way.  My choices are limited, but thankfully there are a few places in Austin that do serve this lifestyle. 
Shopping today made me feel really good about myself.  I bought 3 different kinds of bottoms – two pairs of capris and one pair of shorts.  All different brands.  All size 14.  And they all fit well – not a little snug, not too tight, just right.  BIG feat for me.  Usually I am the one buying those just a little snug pants that I hope will become loose on me in a few weeks.  Doesn’t usually happen.  But this really made me realize that I can do this.  I can continue to be healthy and lose the weight again.
And I remember how good running actually makes me feel.  Now, I don’t really enjoy the act of running.  It’s hard work – on my body.  But it’s so good for me.  I have more energy and my mind is less cluttered.  When I was running, I was able to go off all my med – sleeping, anxiety, depression.  The only things I was taking were my vitamins and Motrin.  That right there says why I should start up again.
Oh, and the fact that our dog is way less crazy when he’s running daily/every other day.
Now, why I decided to start in June is beyond me.  I guess I like the horrible heat and humidity.  Or else, I’m clueless.  I’ll go with the latter.

Thursday, June 10, 2010


This year Hannah took a ballet class at DanceXplosion in Austin.  Each Friday we would head to dance class where Hannah learned the art of Ballet from Arabesque to Plie along with Barre work.  At the beginning of the year, I worried that she takes after me and has no rhythm or skill when it came to dancing.   Hannah complained about the Barre and really only looked forward to seeing Darby and Kate.   Even mid year I was worried about how we were ever going to make it through the dance year and be ready for recital.  She was clumsy and unfocused and just seemed uninterested.  I gave her the option of quitting ballet because it seemed pointless to me to make her do something she didn’t enjoy.  I didn’t realize the discipline she was gaining from the experience.   She insisted that she liked ballet and really wanted to continue attending class.

Around Spring Break, I asked Miss Tiffany if we could video tape a rehearsal with her actually dancing along with the girls.  And each week, Hannah actually practiced.  Then I asked if we could have a copy of the song for her to practice along with.  At that point, Hannah informed me that she wanted to perform her recital dance as a solo in the school talent show.  And she began to practice daily at home.  And when recital time came around, she was not only ready, but also graceful.  Hannah looked like she belonged on the stage.  Miss Tiffany worked really hard with her “ballerinas” to not only instill the knowledge and skills they would need to perform, but she also somehow inspired my daughter to actually become a little ballerina – and a good one at that.  Stephen asked me after the rehearsal, “Is it just because I’m her dad, or is she really good?”  That’s the first time he’s even shown an interest (outside of being the proud father) in her learning ballet.  And you know what?  She is. . . really good, and I am really proud of her!

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Tuesday, June 8, 2010


I’m sitting in my home, enjoying the quiet.  It’s not every day quiet – you know the quiet you get when you send your kids to their rooms to play.  Or send them outside.  It’s more than that.  It’s near silent.  There is no sound of children playing, laughing, screaming.  It’s just quiet. 

For the 1st time in weeks, I’m home alone.  These past weeks have been full of life.  Get from here to there.  Make sure we are fed.  Is the laundry done?  Is the law mowed?  Has Hannah brought everything home from school?  Don’t forget to grab the teachers something as a thank you.  Don’t forget splash day!  Or field day!  Did you put on sunscreen?

And between all those events, we’ve gone up to the rehab hospital to visit grandpa.  We’ve been up there every day, but one, and on that day, Stephen still went.  Our evenings have been disrupted (for good cause), and the family is spending precious time with grandpa (Dad Mc). 

Don’t let me forget to mention that I had two photo shoots on Saturday.  Two wonderful photo shoots – but boy, was it hot. . .and boy, was it humid.  The photos are great, BTW.

I’m also leading the praise time at Noah’s Ark Summer Camp this year (it’s not too much, 20 minutes a week, but the prep for it was insane).  I’m subbing, too, but I’ve only had to sub once so far. 

Next week I’m helping with Preschool VBS at Weskoak Woods and leading Praise Time. 

All of this activity has had it toll on my body, and I’m hurting.  My head, my neck, my shoulders, my back.  And I’m craving things that are not good for me like soda and chocolate.  And I’ve allowed myself to indulge a bit – to keep me sane, I say.

Finally got a moment to talk to a sweet friend of mine.  And her exact words to me were, “Rose, you have to send the kids with Stephen tonight, alone, and stay home.  If you don’t, you’re going to burn out, and where will that put you?”  And she’s right – it will put me into a full blown, 3 day migraine.  And I can’t afford that right now. 

So that’s what I did.  And although I do feel little guilty, and sad, that I’m missing time with grandpa, I know my kids still get to see him.  And Stephen.  And it’s okay. 

Why?  Because sometimes we all need a little quiet.

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

CATCH Family Fun Night

I’m a little behind on my blogging of events this year.  If you think I’m behind on blogging, you should see how far behind I am on scrapbooking.  It’s really kind of sad.  I’ve got about 1/3 of my class scrapbook finished and haven’t really even begun on my two children’s books.  That’s really sad seeing how I’m the Historian for Hannah’s school – it might be finished by end of Summer.  I’ll have to have a scrapbooking marathon one weekend to get it done.  Thankfully, it doesn’t take me long to whip out the pages, it’s just making myself sit down to scrapbook on the computer.  Since I made a personal goal to spend more time being active and keeping the house clean, I’ve been FLY-ing and playing with my children instead of preserving memories. 
Because Hannah’s school is a Title I school in Texas, they receive grant money to host events throughout the year.  One of those events is CATCH Family Fun Night – a night that promotes healthy living.  The school shares with parents everything they are doing to keep our children healthy and active.  We get to partake in a “school lunch” which is a little, but not much better than the lunches exhibited on Jamie Oliver’s Food Revolution. 
AISD develops different menus for each school level. Lunch menus are designed to meet one-third of the Recommended Dietary Allowances for calories, protein, iron, calcium, Vitamin A and Vitamin C. Additionally the menus are analyzed to assure that the week does not exceed 30 percent of calories from fat or 10 percent of calories from saturated fat. Sodium, cholesterol and fiber are monitored as well. With our new feature you may view the nutrients for each food item on the menu.
Lunch consists of an entrée, two selections of fruit, vegetables or salad, bread which may be part of the entrée or separate and a choice of milk. Students may select all five components or may take three components for a full meal. Meals are priced as a unit; however, each item is available a la carte.
Breakfast menus are designed to meet one-fourth of the Recommended Dietary Allowances for calories, protein, iron, calcium, Vitamin A and Vitamin C. They are also analyzed for weekly averages of fat and saturated fat and monitored for sodium, cholesterol and fiber.
I feel bad saying this, but “blah, blah, blah.”  I’ve seen the food, some of it is processed, some of it isn’t .  Thankfully, Hannah will tell me what she chose for the day, and usually it’s the fresh option – on the days she has the choice of a taco or a hot dog, she takes the taco, which is ground turkey, seasonings, and lettuce.  I’m proud of her for the choices she makes.  And she watched the Food Revolution with me.  She’ll never have a chicken nugget again, which makes me proud and laugh all at the same time.
The CATCH Program focuses on coordinating four components: the Eat Smart school nutrition program, K-5 and 6-8 Classroom curriculum,a Physical Education program, and a Family program. The Coordination of health messages between these four component areas is critical to positively impact children's knowledge and behavior. For over 10 years CATCH has guided schools, families, and children in the process of being healthy. CATCH, the largest school-based health promotion study in the U.S., has demonstrated that behaviors such as eating foods high in saturated fat and physical inactivity can be changed.
Our family participated in CATCH Family Fun Night and I took photos to prove it.  I’m very impressed with Hannah’s jump roping, hula hooping, and dance skills.  She loves to run, but it’s a runner, but she certainly excels in other areas.
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Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Getting Ready for Preschool Praise Time

This summer, I decided to take off from teaching a full class at Preschool Summer Camp.  I want my kids to enjoy Vacation Bible School and not have to worry about running around from here to there.  I’m taking what I learned from my fast this Spring and slowing things down.  And although I think I may lose my mind, spending all this time with my kiddos, I’m excited to see what the Lord has in store for them. 
I did accept the position of Praise Time Leader during Summer Camp though.  Summer Camp at Noah’s Ark is 4 weeks of MDO (Tues and Thurs) from 9-12.  It’s like VBS, but for the really little kiddos.  Both my children are old enough to go to the full blown VBS’s this year, so we will be participating in several of them, with myself volunteering during several.  But in the meantime, I will spend about 20 minutes on Tuesdays for the month of June, leading this special Praise Time.
Usually it is not difficult to choose songs to sing.  There are 4 weeks – 4 themes – and so usually 4 song.  The first week is Space and how God Made Everything.  We originally chose the song, My God is so Big for this week, but as I was looking for other songs, Stephen reminded me of the song, He’s Still Workin’ On Me.  For those of you not familiar with this song, the lyrics to the chorus (which is what we will sing over and over again in Praise time) are as follows,
He's still working on me to make me what I ought to be.
It took Him just a week to make the moon and stars,
The sun and the earth and Jupiter and Mars.
How loving and patient He must be, He's still working on me.

We are excited to sing this song because it mentions some of the planets.  The kids are going to LOVE it!  We’ve decided that My God is So Big will be the THEME song for Summer Camp this year, meaning we will sing it each week.
The 2nd week of Summer Camp focuses on the story of Noah, but with a twist.  In the classrooms, the kiddos will be learning about farm animals.  I thought about singing the same old Noah songs that the kids all know – Arky, Arky, Who Built the Ark, etc.  But then I decided I wanted to focus on the farm aspect.  Little did I know how difficult it would be to find a song about Jesus and Farm Animals.  I had to delve into my memory and travel back to my college days.  When I was a part of Living Praise, we sang a silly song called, I Just Wanna Be a Sheep.  There are some verses that aren’t really preschool appropriate, BUT the chorus and last verse are perfect, so we will be baaing our way through Praise Time and having a blast.
Week 3 was the most difficult week to plan for.  The theme of the week is Prayer and Growing.  You’d think I’d know tons of songs about these subjects, and I do.  Unfortunately, they are not preschool appropriate.  But my sweet friend, Kim, came to the rescue and introduced me to the preschool song, How to Pray.  It’s perfect for the week, and upbeat, which really was the goal in this song.
And lastly, our final week is about Jesus calming the storm.  I really wanted the kids to learn a song about how Jesus keeps us safe.  I googled it and found the lyrics to the song With Jesus in the Boat.  This is a song from the 1940s.  I was a little nervous about finding a file to use that wouldn’t drag on and on.  But thanks to a wonderful web site and resource, Turn Back To God, I not only found the song and lyrics, but also an mp3 file.  And when I couldn’t get the song to download, the owner, Georgy, walked along with me (via instant message) until it downloaded to my computer.  And did I mention this was all FREE????  Free music resources??  Hello?  This should be bookmarked by everyone!!!
And now, the Praise Time CD is ready to go.  Our first praise time is at 11:20 which means I’ll need to get moving.  Thankfully, I’m already up, dressed, and ready to go.  Just letting the boy watch an episode of Phineas and Ferb before heading out. 
Thanks again to all my awesome resources.  Kim and Georgy, this time wouldn’t be a success without y’all!!  May the Lord continue to pour His blessings upon you!