Friday, April 4, 2014

Dare you to move

Have you ever been at a place in your life where you know that you are in a position to make big changes? That's where I am right now. My career pretty much came off the tracks last June, when I was hit by the big resource action, aka layoff. In a lot of ways being laid off was a relief because it had become pretty clear to me that electrical engineering is not my passion. In fact, I don't like it much at all! So now I am in a perfect position to find something I truly *want* to do. But I am finding myself completely paralyzed. Why is change so scary? Why does starting something new seem so daunting? And how to I move past those fears?

Why am I so afraid to fail?

I know I need to just go for it. I dare myself to move.

Monday, January 21, 2013

Nov & Dec Recap

By comparison to Sept & October, November was pretty quiet.

November 2012
We had some incredible family photos taken by WildClover Photography. We did a short & chilly outdoor session. We only had 20 minutes with them (mini-session), but they really did a great job capturing us in that amount of time. Those ladies are AMAZING! I'd highly recommend them.
Here are a few of the photos by WildClover:

We were also lucky enough to celebrate Thanksgiving twice. The first was Nov 17, when our friends Deb & Eric hosted our traditional Friends Thanksgiving. The turn out this year was huge! There were 20 adults and 18 kids in attendance.  Eric is amazing in the kitchen and was able to pull off cooking a giant turkey with all the fixin's seamlessly.

On Thanksgiving day, we went down to my brother and sister-in-laws. Mike and Maureen are also amazing hosts, and we've been doing Thanksgiving with them for the last few years. We had another spectacular meal, and Maureen cooked two turkeys so that we'd all have leftovers to take with us. We are so lucky to have such awesome family members so close by.

December 2012
December flew by in a blur! We attended fun Christmas parties, decorated and did a ton of baking. However, in between all that I am proud to say that Corey earned is Orange belt in Moo Gong Do. He was thrilled that Nanna and Grandpa were able to attend his belt ceremony. I can't begin to tell you how proud we are!

Proud Grandpa with new Orange belt
This kid is *amazing*

We had a wonderful Christmas. We traveled to my parents  for Christmas Eve & Christmas Day. The kids adore opening presents with their cousins. Santa came through with all the right things...particularly a skateboard for Corey (yikes!) and a Nintendo DS for Alexandra. On the 26th we were lucky enough to have ALL my siblings and their families get together at my parents. We also took up the whole back room at Teo's the local & beloved hotdog joint.
Corey trying on his leather jacket

Look at that pile of presents!

At Teo's!

JJ experiences his first Teo's dog!

David helps out his cousin

 Then we headed off to see Ivan's mom and sister & got to celebrate Christmas all over again!

Grammy helps Alex open a gift

Lucky kids! Two Christmases!

While we were there we also got the chance to see Ivan's step-mom & step-sister. So much fun!
Gramma Sue & Corey
Alex adores Aunt Billie!

We rang in the New Year with a quiet night at home with Deb, Eric & Mary. I will confess that we did our toast at 9:30pm & were all in bed by midnight! Happy New Year!

Wednesday, January 2, 2013

Sept & Oct recap

I've had the makings of blog posts in my head for months. Months, I tell you! But somewhere between my head and the computer they never materialized. And then so much time went by that it seemed weird to post about stuff so far in the past, you know how it goes. So instead of the detailed posts I'd planned, I'm just going to do a quick recap, and hopefully stay on track for 2013 :)  Without further delay, here it is:

September 2012
September was packed full of fun stuff. Early in the month we headed up to Jay Peak for the weekend. I was supposed to run my first ever 25k, but chose to skip it at the recommendation of most of my runner friends because of my foot problems. We went up to see our friend Micah finish, and of course enjoy the water park while we were there. I'd highly recommend it, it was a great time.
Happy girls
Feeling like a big kid

Enjoying the view

At the summit

Both kids played soccer this year, so our weekends were full of soccer practice and games. They both had a great time!

And of course the highlight for me was the Spartan Race on Sept 22nd. It was by far the scariest, craziest most bad-ass thing I have ever done. My goal was to finish, particularly for those who couldn't, and I did it! 9 hours and 23minutes of swearing, crying, and bitching, but I did it!
Part of our team- Homer's Heroes
Sandbag carry

Slippery wall
Fire jump

The bling!

October 2012
October started off with a little medical scare for Corey. For the first time ever, he showed some symptoms of tethered cord so I called the clinic at Dartmouth and they suggested that I bring him in for a "couple" tests. That ended up being, head x-ray, kidney ultrasound, MRI, and urodynamics study. My friends in the SB community know that this means a FULL day at the hospital. The results were somewhat concerning, so we went back down a few weeks later for a sedated full spine MRI to look for distinct signs of tethering. Thankfully, there was nothing acute on the full spine MRI, so we are in wait and see mode & we go back for more tests in Feb.
Ready for x-ray

Kidney Ultrasound

Waiting for the neurosurgeon

Waking up from sedated MRI

The best part...


Other highlights in October were our trip to Stowe with friends, Corey's soccer tournament & trip the the Dartmouth football game.  We also ran the CHaD hero races again and raised $1485 as a team for the children's hospital. Corey was proud to have raised over $400 himself.  :) Thanks again to all those who donated!
Corey ran the 1 mile Cam's Course

Alex running Cam's Course
Alex & Brandon almost done!

Lynne & Lily's first 5K!
Rock stars!

And finally, Corey decided right before Halloween that he wanted to have a "homemade" costume so he could enter the Shelburne Halloween Costume Contest! We decided on a Minion from Despicable Me, and he won 1st prize in his age group for Funniest Costume!
Prize winning Minion

Friday, September 14, 2012

Oh Karma!

Back in May, my office was moved into a new building. It is in a less than ideal location, but it was so fun to see the little family of woodchucks that was living under the catwalk that I had to go through to get to the other building every day. 

I mean, really, aren't these guys cute?!

My coworkers are odd...because this showed up on the windowsill of the new building. You know, in case we want to do a little light reading.

Sadly, a few short weeks later, this showed up:

It's a little hard to see... but that's a trap. :( I am going to hope that the woodchuck family was trapped and released. Yeah, yeah, let's go with that.

 And this is where Karma kicks in. After Mr & Mrs Woodchuck and family went missing, some of these guys moved in.

 Not surprisingly, this showed up on the windowsill a few days later.

I can't make this stuff up, people.

Tuesday, August 28, 2012

DNS or DNF... what's worse?

Well, it's here. Jay Peak 25K is this Sunday.  Sadly, my training really never picked up after my foot issues which still plague me. I have gotten in a few hikes, and an occasional run but that's it. So, now I am left with a philosophical question, "What's worse, DNS (did not start) or DNF (did not finish)?"

My mantra these past couple years has been strength. So both DNS and DNF seem like terrible, weak options. But realistically, my fear is that I will royally screw myself up if I attempt it and then be out for Spartan too. So I'm stuck.

A good friend suggested that perhaps DNS really stands for "Did Nothing Stupid". Maybe I should listen to him.

What would you do?

Wednesday, July 25, 2012

Breaking My Own Rules

I'm just going to admit it. I don't like wearing sneakers with jeans. I just don't. There are a few situations where I deem it acceptable like camping, hiking, or say when you are at Disney and walking for an entire day. But beyond that. It's not ok.  I warned you I was crazy.

For the past several weeks my feet have been hurting. I don't know if it's the high heels, the longer walk to my office, or running a half marathon without much training (stupid!) that did it. But whatever it was the result is that my feet are PISSED. They even hurt when I am sitting. The last run I did happened to be 6 miles of trail running on July 12th. My right foot bothered me so much I had to walk a lot of the last 2 miles. In the woods. In 95 degree weather. With barely any water. Being eaten alive by mosquitoes. Sigh.  Good times.

I rested last week, but the feet still hurt.

This is what I have resorted to:

I'm not happy about it, but I have two trail races coming up in September and they are looming over my head. I am signed up for the Jay Peak Trail Running Festival 25K (15 miles) on Labor Day weekend, followed by the Spartan Beast at Killington. The Beast is a 13 mile trail race with obstacles like jumping over fire, scaling walls & spear throwing.  Maybe wearing sneakers with good support will help my feet feel better.

Because here's the thing, while I am scared to death of The Beast. I am DETERMINED to finish, if not for myself, then for my friend Christie who just last week at age 32 was diagnosed with breast cancer.

Christie and I met through the elementary school. Her daughter was in Corey's K, 1st and now 2nd grade class. Her son will be on the same K team as Alexandra. While I haven't known her that long, I have quickly realized that she is the kind of friend that everyone should have. She is generous, smart, organized (though she claims she's not), she makes parenting look EASY (though she thinks she doesn't), and she is funny. She makes me laugh every day with her facebook posts about the funny little people she's raising. I'm not sure she realizes that she is part of how I survived last summer. She arranged a meal train for us. She sent Corey gifts for his crappy, in-PICU 6th birthday. She is AWESOME.

And honestly, I think cancer picked the wrong girl. Because she is going to kick some ass.  She is going to beat this, and I have no doubt she will do so without losing her sense of humor or spilling her drink. So, if she can face a mastectomy and chemo with grace and humor, the least I can do is drag my butt over some obstacles for a 13 mile race in her honor. She's the real Spartan.

So yeah, I'll break my own rule. For Christie.

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

And so it begins...

Back in January, I had the bright idea to start a blog. I thought it would be a great way to document the more interesting aspects of my life. I thought that it would be fun. I painstakingly chose a name for my that I thought best represented what I wanted to blog about, and then nothing happened. Here it is 7 months later and I am finally sitting down to write my first post. I think part of the delay was the realization that I am not even a good writer. So, grammar police, do yourselves a favor and stop reading now!  Save yourselves! The other part of it was that I felt like there is just too much to say, and yet none of it would be interesting to the general public. I wanted to be eloquent. To be profound.  I think I have finally accepted that maybe I should just be me. So here I am :)

So, here's me in a nutshell. I work at a large corporation that will remained unnamed. I am married & I am mom to two beautiful kids. Corey will be turning 7 on Saturday, and Alexandra is 5. They are crazy, funny, and sassy. They make me laugh, and they push all my buttons. Leaving me semi-crazy and exhausted. But, I like to think most moms are semi-crazy and exhausted. At least that's what I tell myself :)

In addition to the insanity of dealing with a 7 & 5 year old on a daily basis, I also have the added craziness associated with all of Corey's medical appointments. Corey was born with Spina Bifida, a birth defect where the spinal column does not close correctly in utero leaving the nerves of the spinal cord exposed. To date, Corey has had 9 surgeries. The scariest of these occurred a year ago yesterday, when he had emergency surgery to repair a bowel obstruction and perforation & spent 17 days in the PICU.  It is still scary to me to think that he could have died. I am so thankful for the wonderful care he received at the Children's Hospital.

In my free time I run & do bootcamp. When I say I "run"...please note that is a bit of an exaggeration. I am slow. Turtle slow. 12 minute/mile slow. And I find that somewhat discouraging. Lately I've been struggling with both running & bootcamp (see reference to exhaustion above). I want to be a better runner, a more fit person overall. But in the last few months I just cannot make myself get out the door more than once or twice a week. Perhaps public shame will get my butt in gear ;)

I chose the name of this blog "Live. Run. Hope" because I really want this blog to be about the crazy things that happen in our daily lives. I can't make this stuff up, people! I want it to be about my quest for fitness. And most of all, I want it to be about my hope for the future. My hope that my kids will be happy, and healthy, and not TOO scarred from having me as their mom :)