Friday, December 28, 2012

Wrapping It Up 2012

This year started off with a slight notion that I wanted to run a few more obstacle runs then the year before. That I wanted to do a few fun hikes outside with the boys. I wanted to wrap my arms around my soldier husband sooner rather then later as he returned from his fourth deployment. I wanted to take a vacation alone with my husband for the first time ever. I met all these goals not resolutions head on & surpassed them all. Here are a few of the highlights of my 2012 all wrapped up in pictures so that I can mostly look back and enjoy. But I want to share with all my Bloggy friends in case you missed them ;0)

Crazy Spartan style work outs begin with my running partner in crime Ashley.

I ran the Seattle Color run with Jacob- his first 5K - It was so FUN!

We ran with a lot of friends & had so much fun together. I was so excited that all my running rubbed off on one of my boys.

Then June arrived and Team Wonderwoman emerged to take on The PNW Spartan.

Our super FUN video I made , I still watch it-lol

I also took on training Banyan my son's Service Dog in Training 

 Banyan went just about everywhere I went or Jeremy went. We still miss him today.

My BIGGEST & BEST moment in 2012 was when my soldier stepped off the plane from Afghanistan. June really was an exceptional month in my life.

Then we focused on my other very important goal, a "Parent vacation" No Kids Allowed!

Hawaii in July for 7 wonderful sun filled days with my love. The first trip alone in 16 years!

Sounders Game- who knew we would love it so much we would go a few times over the season.

I also snuck in a few more runs after the Spartan. The Down & Dirty , The Run for your Lives, The Warrior Dash.

First EVER Mud Run with  My husband- I think it will be his last-haha He was not impressed, but did it for me.

Another amazing moment this year was when I decided to start running in Blue for our Fallen.
It has been so great running in honor of our Fallen Soldiers. I love wearing my blue at my runs now. I decided to start running regular races. I did my first ever 10K & 12K

I have never been a fan of just plain old running but now I'm hooked.

Wear blue: Christmas in the Park : Yelm 

We also lost Banyan in November and had to start over from square one with a Service Dog for Jeremy. In comes 1 Boy 4 Change who offer to help us get a new puppy for Jeremy. On Christmas Eve we recieved this adorable picture of Balto our new pup in training.

This one with the toy is his first Christmas present,awwww

We ended our year with such a blessing, that we can only hope to pay it forward some how.

There are many other snapshots of my year with friends & family. Hiking Mt. Rainer with Jacob stands out as wonderful day with my youngest son.

Hiking to Murhut Falls with the whole family & digging for sea life at the beach after.

I know I am leaving out so many fun things. Like Spring break in Oregon with my boys. BUNCO night with the ladies choosing a TWILIGHT theme. So many good memories so I feel so blessed. I know that the good truly out weigh the struggles. I am looking forward to 2013 to try new things again. More long runs a half marathon to be exact in June. More hiking with my family around WA & OR. Meeting our newest family member in a few weeks. Traveling to Las Vegas for the first time to drop the pup off and to visit him with Jeremy. I am just looking forward to every new day God allows us to breath on this amazing planet. I am blessed with so many wonderful things in my life & I plan on enjoying them all. I hope you aren't to bored and plan to stay along for the ride.
I mean with four boys, 2 dogs, an Army husband, a whole lot of crazy friends there are bound to be some good blogs ahead!

May you all have a fun safe New Years Eve. A very blessed & healthy New Year in 2013. See you next year Bloggy Friends 

Wednesday, December 26, 2012

Our Excitment in a Snapshot

It was a great Christmas day spent with just our family at home. We enjoyed lounging in Pj's all day ( I did change to my yoga pants at some point) , My mom will have a heart attack if she reads this to see that we just did buffet stye Christmas lunch in our comfy clothes. But we where just so happy to be in our home together no worries about if Paul would be able to call or skype that we wanted to just chill. I did go all out fixing our favorites for lunch which everyone devoured and had left overs later. All in all we had a lovey magical Christmas day. One that I know the boys can look back on later in life with fond smiles. I really can't ask for more then that. Who cares if the table wasn't set to perfection and everyone was wearing their best clothes. We still sat around the table enjoying a meal ALL TOGETHER!! I still got all the compliments of a meal well cooked from all my boys plus one. Yes, we had a wonderful Christmas day together, one for the books- thank you Jesus for allowing that peace to happen in our home.

My how handsome & big my four boys have become. This was taken on Christmas Eve.

A picture was sent to Jeremy from Chris at 1 Boy 4 Change of Jeremy's new pup who he named Balto.


Then our last Christmas picture was sent last night before bed of Balto with his first ever Christmas toy.

Now it's a day of relaxing with the boys enjoying all their new gifts. I am going to go test out my new running shoes as well. Then tomorrow the Christmas clean up begins as I store away all the wonderful decorations until next year.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Our Home is Full

I am feeling truly blessed this year as my home has all the important people able to be here to celebrate Christmas . Paul is home and out fishing with Matthew, Jacob, & our cousin Ben. Jeremy & Hunter are tolerating my girly movies as we wait for their return. Hopefully they have some fresh Salmon to put into our freezer when they arrive. It's rare that we are all under one roof for holidays so I am enjoying it immensely. Even better that we can entertain a cousin who is stationed in WA with the Navy. It's been years since I saw Ben and the boys are enjoying having him around the house.

We baked all week and are enjoying way to many sweets. I did sneak off to the gym today just so I could indulge guilt free for a few days. We let the boys open up a few Christmas cards this morning that we knew contained gifts. They where so excited! Their wonderful homemade cards from their Aunt Sara were to cute! Origami Christmas Tree's made out of money. With a wonderful poem inside.

We are looking forward to an evening of pizza for dinner then opening gifts from all the extended family. The boys can hardly stand the wait! In the morning we will see what Santa brought to the boys. I do know that all but our amazing Jeremy know it's mom & dad, but they still love to play along. Merry Christmas to all our friends & family. We wish you all the best.

Thursday, December 20, 2012

Wishes Do Come True

Today I posted two separate posts on Facebook and had replies with in minutes of each post of friends giving unselfishly. One was a status update on Jeremy's Facebook page letting everyone know the search was still on for a new Service Dog in training. As soon as a friend saw the post that Jeremy had hoped that Santa would bring him a new dog she said " I can make that happen for you.". There was more messaging back & forth and growing excitement that this could be a possibility. I got all of her information she got my trainer's information & I sat back to pray. I didn't breath a word to anyone for fear of jinxing it-lol Silly I know. Then late this evening I got the call from Stephanie our trainer from Michael's Angel Paws that she thought this was the perfect match for Jeremy!!

I am pleased and so very excited to announce that Chris & K9 Bronx from 1 Boy 4 Change have donated one male plush coat German Shepherd to our family more specifically Jeremy. We still have a lot of details to finalize but this wonderful organization has promised to give us a dog with NO COST out of pocket to our family. This is just the miracle we have been praying for since we re-homed Banyan. We will start with a puppy again but he will go straight to a puppy raiser this time to receive all his training. Jeremy will go for visits to Nevada as often as our trainer needs . Jeremy is so thrilled he is just bouncing off the walls! We couldn't be more grateful to this wonderful organization & to God who made it all possible. With out our prayers and all our families/friends I know this would not be possible.

      Jeremy's Christmas Wish has been granted.

Now we will have a very Merry Christmas indeed. We will post pictures as we receive them for everyone to enjoy. Merry Christmas my friends & remember the power of Prayer is AMAZING!

Tuesday, December 18, 2012

12k's of Christmas

Early before sunrise this past Sunday I got up and moving to go run my first ever 12k run. It was freezing cold 38 degrees outside . I was nervous & excited. I had not been able to prep with much running over the past two weeks like I had hoped. I picked up Ashley my regular running partner all decked out in blue. Not only where we wearing our wear blue gear for the fallen but we also decided to be blue elves! Ashley made us some nifty little blue felt elf shoe covers and we wore our blue Santa hats.

Here is Ashely modeling for you all. I chose not to wear the tights with our blue shorts. I went with my capris, it was just too cold! After picking up Ashley we met Dana at Safeway & hit up Starbucks our standing pre-run ritual to fuel up for our hour plus drive to Kirkland, WA.

Once we arrive on the waterfront the temperature had dropped to 35 degrees with a strong gusty wind. To say my teeth where chattering it putting it lightly. I prayed at this point as we pinned our bibs on that I warmed up fast when the run started. We hung out for about an hour before the race taking a few pictures to remember our first ever 7.3 miles in the freezing cold.

We also hung out in front of the bathroom because the wall blocked the cold wind. We met some other elves as well as a regular blue supporter. When the 5K finally started we where ready to get in line for our race.

The first mile was as usual all about my breathing. With the cold hitting my lungs it was hard to focus on much more then just moving to stay warm. As we rounded the first corner we where hit in the face with our first of many long hills. We had looked at the course map we had only noticed one hill we thought was at the end of the route. I was like no problem I got this because I was not tired yet. I trucked right up that hill no problem. By the time I reached the top I was already at mile 2 and my legs where nice and warm- I was ready to run.
I looked around and realized I had lost Ashley & Dana somewhere in the huge throng of runners. Over 1600 runners had signed up so I just kept moving forward.
 I made it just fine for the first 4 miles of A LOT of Hills!! I had never run so many hills at one time in one run in my whole life. By the time we reached the water station at our 6k mark I was exhausted mentally. I was so ready to call it a day but I swished my water and kept going. it felt like I was doing a snails pace at this point. But thankfully I had found one runner another female that I paced behind. She didn't drop off until mile 6, uggg. Then I was frantic trying to find a new person to pace. I thought I was on my own when I hit mile 7. My legs where jello and my head was done! I stopped for a few seconds only to hear a voice from behind yell at me "oh NO, you are NOT QUITTING!! I've been following you all morning you ARE FINISHING! MOVE!! You GOT THIS!". I had never seen this lady before but she scared me so bad I made my feet move putting one foot in front of the other. She ran with me and we both crossed the finish. I told her thank you then tried to stop shaking. I was exhausted!
I went to grab a coconut water & looked frantically for the bananas. This was the only negative comment about the race set up- I wish they had all this right at the finish. I had to wonder around while shaking to find the bananas I so desperately needed to refuel. By the time I made it back to the finish line Ashley had just crossed. We got her set up with water & food then waited for Dana. I started shaking so bad from cooling down that Ashely ran to get our backpack so I could put my sweatshirt on to try to stay warm. Dana showed up and I was able to snap her picture on my cell as she crossed. 

1:13:43 was my finish time.

1:19:48 was Ashley's finish time.

1:29:01 was Dana's finish time

All three of us so happy to be done & so  hungry!

We discussed our run, the crazy hills and how we where sure we would never finish. I shared about the woman who I thought was going to drag me across the final leg of the race. Ashely shared that her head gave out on that first hill and that is where I lost her. Only to have her get to the top and give herself a pep talk. Dana shared how she puked around mile 6.5 and a nice lady rubbed her back through it so she would not stop. It was most definitely a mental run for all three of us to finish. But I am so excited that we all did! I now know I can run 7.3 miles with out stopping if I want. That my body is capable of such distances as long as I think I can. I am excited to have a nice long running break until 2013.

My next run I hope is not until March, the Hot Chocolate 15k so 9.3 miles. I have plenty of time to rest & prep to get my head back in the game. This of course is all leading up to the Seattle Rock "n" Roll Half- Marathon I signed up for in June. Did I forget to  mention that for Christmas I asked my parents to pay for my half registration- yeah I may have lost it folks! 13.1 miles in downtown Seattle surely means more of those dreaded hills! At least I have a few friends talked into running it with me so I'm sure it'll be another fun filled day. Then I can mark it off my bucket list! Turning forty- run a half, yep I'm crazy but only half-Crazy-haha!