Thursday, December 8, 2011

The Off Season

During the spring and summer I admit that I spend a bit of time training. Somewhere between 10 and 12 hours a week. Not a lot compared to some people, but between juggling homeschooling, my printing business and the rest it sometimes seems like there is no time left over for another else.

So now that its the off season it has been nice to have some down time. I don't follow a structured swim/bike/run schedule over the winter. I just do what I want when I want, so that I stay in shape but prevent burning out and over training. If I feel like swimming I swim. TRX...sure why not. Doing nothing...yes, well actually no...truthfully I'm not very good at doing nothing. ( Except of course I amvery good at doing nothing if it involves a tropical beach and a cocktail but that is for another blog post)

So if I'm training less over the winter then what may you ask, am I doing with all this extra time?????

Well there has been some of this...


And a bit of this....


And this....(AKA the disco wreath)


And this one for Ciara....


And my personal favorite....


If you are noticing a particular color scheme here it is purely coincidental and has nothing to do with my A type personality :-) Now you understand what Matt has to deal with!

Sunday, December 4, 2011

A Big Moment.


Life is truly filled with landmarks. Today was one of those for Jack...and Matt and I.  Jack made his First Communion and Confirmation today. He is now considered an adult member of our Church community.  A big honor and a great responsibility. 

It was a really special day for him.He asked our neighbor Natalie to be his sponsor.  She was gracious and lovely as always.


We were lucky enough to have the Bishop at the lots of photo ops with the big Kahuna.


This was really one for the books.  Our last child is now a fully fledged member of the Catholic Church.  I'm happy and a little sad all at once :-)


Saturday, November 26, 2011



This is what happens when the first sprinklings of snow hit the ground here.

It starts the male competitive juices flowing. 

Sled races down the icy driveway.

Monday, November 21, 2011

Arizona Here I Come

Sometimes a picture tells a thousand words....

Saturday, November 19, 2011

Food, Glorious Food

I love food....especially if someone else is cooking it.

I admit I am a lazy cook...(that's right I said lazy not lousy...although that also could be true). Mostly I don't have the interest to crack open the cook books and find something new to cook. So I tend to cook the same things over and over. If it weren't for my 3 constantly ravenous children I may not cook at all. Cereal would become my best friend.

Well that is all changing....well....not the love to cook part...but I am trying to overhaul my diet. There are lots of exciting things coming up in the next 12 months for me and changing my diet is going to be an important step. I'm trying to eat less processed food, more fresh fruit and vegetables.

But nothing TOO food triangle will still include alcohol and chocolate....just less of it.

So with that in mind we signed up for the local food co-op, Bountiful Baskets.
This is an absolutely awesome idea - a volunteer run organization based on delivering fresh, quality produce to people at a reasonable price. You can get more details on how it all works from their website but basically you register and pay for either a standard basket of food ($15)...or an organic basket ($25). It is a mixture of fruit and vegetables but you don't know what you are getting until you pickup the basket. You can also add on selected artisan breads and other weekly specials.

Here is what we got in the standard basket for $15 that Matt and I picked up today.



After our co-op pickup we headed out to the new Trader Joe's store,and here are some of the goodies we came home with.


We may have gotten a little carried away.

But we had the sweet potato gnocchi ( along with some of the sauteed vegetables we got in our co-op basket) for dinner along with the Teryaki chicken and we all agreed ( even the kids) that it was delish.

Wednesday, November 16, 2011



I'm someone who keeps a small circle.

A VERY small circle.

The people in my circle are people that I trust completely.

Lifelong friends and family only.

Some people see that as kind of limiting. Don't get me wrong I have plenty of acquaintances but only a few of them make it into the circle.  I'm not really sure why that is.  I don't really see the need to analyze it. I like it.  It works for me.  Period.

Now you have the backstory I can tell you about this week.

It has been a tough week. For a lot of reasons.  I'm not going to bore you with the details. 

And then tonight a knock at the door...out of the blue.

And there is my friend Michelle and her daughter Natalie. They were just on their way home from the gym and dropped in to give us this.....


For no particular reason...( she wasn't aware I was having a tough week).  Just because.


All I can say is that my heart is full and I feel blessed.

I think random acts of kindness are her specialty. I'm so lucky she is in my little circle. Oh, and the banana bread is wickedly delish!

Monday, November 14, 2011

A Week in Our Life.

Have you ever felt that your life goes by in a blur sometimes.  That one week somehow blends into the next. I always tend to feel this way as we head into November. All of a sudden it is nearly the end of the year. How did that happen?

Now I am not a person that sees the point of being busy just for the sake of it but sometimes when you have kids it seems like busy is unavoidable. So in an effort to reduce the "blur" I thought I'd take my camera with me for a week and record our life. Kind of like a snapshot of our year as we come to a close of 2011. One picture of something that is going on in our household each day for a goes!


School dominates most of our time during the week.  The boys generally get started at homeschool as Ciara heads off to high school.  By 7:30am heads are in books and pencils are out. We have really missed Ciara this year but she is having a blast at CV.

But high school means lots of homework. Ciara's school bag seems so unbelievably heavy with all the text books jammed in it .I'm sure she is headed for some permanent back injury. We weighed her bag the other day. It weighs 30 pounds.



The boys hit the pool for their weekly swim team at the YMCA. This week they got to ride the water slides at the end of practice



Now its my turn to get wet.  In the evening I head out to the gym to swim with my tri team. As my coach says..."Misery loves company", so true!


We are lovers of science. I think it is the boys favorite subject. This week they were studying protozoa  so we got some live samples and looked at them under the microscope. Kept them busy for hours.  Way better then TV!



Mercifully there was no school today.  Veterans Day. 

So we decided it was the perfect time to deliver some blankets we had made over the summer for a couple of local charities.


And of course in the mix is a myriad of scout meetings, religious education classes, music and art lessons and a whole lot of other things that fill our time.  Sometimes I need to just step back and find the quiet.

And then it is time to chillax....and enjoy our first hint that winter is on the way. 


Thursday, October 6, 2011

Kids Triathlon

{I think I may need to take running lessons from Jack.  His form is so much better than mine its embarrassing} this will be my last summer related post and then we will be all caught up.

As the tri season came to a close, my Triathlon club organized a kids triathlon at our team gym.  I made the medals and went along to help out on the day.  The boys competed and we had so much fun.

 It was around 95 degrees that day.  An absolute scorcher so these guys had tough conditions to compete in but they all did an amazing job.

This little guy had a crash on his bike but he was so brave. I don't think I saw a single tear. If it had have been me I would have been wailing and bawling from all the road rash and blood.  But his Mom was right there to patch him up AND she doubled as the team photographer for the day. Talk about multi tasking!

So that's a wrap for summer 2011. The weather seems to have turned and we have had rain all week, so I know that cold weather is just around the corner.  Good bye were awesome :-)

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Mud Wrestling that title is a little deceiving but it got your attention didn't it!

In July we headed over to North Bend with the usual suspects to do the Warrior Dash. An obstacle course style race with lots of mud, fire and potentially hazardous obstacles to climb over, slide down and jump through. It seemed like a fun race to do back in January when we all signed up for it but as the race day approached I think there were some questions about the wisdom of what we had gotten ourselves into.

We had our game faces on...


We had our official photographer...


The flaming start line...check out the ominous clouds in the background. Yikes...I was a little scared as we waited at the start.


And we're off


Climbing the rope ladder and then jumping over the flames.we are SO hard core!


Through the barbed wire covered mud pit


Matt was our teams officially mud extractor


After we got out we had a quick hose down from the fire truck ( or was it the public sanitation truck I can't remember) and it was time to congratulate ourselves that we actually survived


I like her kind of crazy...still smiling right to the end.


We made it...woohooo!


And this was us after...( yes I know it looks like I am missing an arm but the course wasn't THAT hazardous).  This race turned out to be an obsolute blast if for no other reasons than I got to do something outrageous with my favorite group of friends!



One of the things about this summer that the kids enjoyed the most would have had to be this little guy....his name is Homer. 


He came into our lives as a foster puppy. 

Ciara wanted to volunteer at the animal shelter and she wasn't old enough to be able to do it by herself.  So instead we decided to sign up as a foster family for dogs that were too young for the animal shelter.

Homer came to us as an abandoned pup when he was five weeks old...Yummm...couldn't you just eat him up!



The kids totally took ownership of looking after him. They fed him, trained him and cleaned up after him.


They took turns looking after him at night and even got up at night to potty him. Occasionally we would come down in the morning to discover scenes like this.


He may also have been a little spoiled...but only a little.


This was Homer when we first got him...


and this is what he looked like the day he left when he was 10 weeks old.


The good news is that he was adopted on the day he left our no lonely nights at the shelter for Homer. He is now part of a family that loves him as much as we did. In fact they called the shelter recently to ask them to pass on their thanks to us for doing such a great job training him.
Total happy ending.


Monday, September 19, 2011

Glacier National Park

WARNING: Photo heavy may feel the need to mumble obscenities about me as you wait for this goliath size post to load.

In the spirit of the previous post I am going to keep the summer recap short.  Don't want to bore you to death.  But one of the highlights of this summer for us was definitely our trip to Glacier National Park with friends.

The scenery really says it all....













And of course the people you go with can make a good trip great



especially the feisty ones!!!!