Friday, April 27, 2012

My First 5K...

Okay... I just got an email from Pilar asking me to take a look at a link that she sent me for a 5K here in Johns Creek. It's September 15. She asked if I wanted to do it and set that date as my goal to be able to run my first 5K.

I'm all a flutter inside. Will I be ready for a 5K by September??? I looked at my calendar and it's like 20 weeks away. That means my 9 week Couch 2 5K program that's set for three days a week for nine weeks... would give me extra time to keep working up to the 5K. 

I told her I'm in. I'll set that as my goal. 

Holy S#*t!!!

I hope Steve and Gus will come and cheer me on! I pray that I am able to prepare myself for running a 5K, but it's good to know that even if I can't run the whole thing, I can walk if needed. I just need to focus on each day and stay strong. 

On Monday we're starting the Couch 2 5K program. It's 30 minutes. Starts with a 5 minute warm-up and then you run for a minute and walk for 1.5 and keep going back and forth for 20 minutes. We'll see. I don't know if I can run for a minute. Seriously. 

I'm going to enjoy this last weekend of my former non-running self... because Monday starts the real training. No turning back now!! 

I have been doing really well with keeping track of EVERYTHING I eat and I haven't gone over on calories at all. I weigh in on Sunday. I'll be sure to post if I lost. I hope I did. Even if it's just a pound!!

A Year of Gratitude #118

A Year of Gratitude #118: Back to Our Routine

Steve came home last night and I'm glad to have him back. I'm thankful that our routine can get back to normal and we can enjoy him for the next three days. Then he's back to NYC for the week. 

I'm grateful for the next three days as a family.

A Year of Gratitude #117

A Year of Gratitude #117: Miniature Farm Animals

Gus and a miniature goat

We headed to Canton, GA yesterday for a trip to Tanglewood Farm-- home of the miniature animals. Gus and I went with Kathryn and Aubree and we met Kirsten and Sam there. The kids had a great time. Gus was moody... but that's typical right now. He's been more shy around other kids, and more clingy with me. 

He eventually was able to get into the pen and see the different goats and he enjoyed them. We saw miniature goats, cats, sheep, cows, donkeys, horses, llamas, pigs, and there were turkeys and chickens, as well as a bison.

It was a great get away and was only 30 minutes away. I'd definitely go back, but I'd want to go when a school group was NOT there. It was crowded and we were asked to leave various pens so that the school kids could go in. I was less than happy about that, since we paid money to see the animals and should have been treated with respect and not made to feel rushed.

Anyway... here are some pictures from our day:
Gus was trying to eat the bread for the animals, so I gave him some pretzels to snack on instead

Gus meets a pig

He was fascinated by the pigs!

Sweet miniature African Pygmy goat

Miniature cow

Making his duck face while strolling along the fence

He wanted into the pen with the baby miniature pigs

Brushing a miniature donkey
Gus and the brush

Gus and Sam

Ready to feed the sheep

The sheep attacked!! They knocked Gus down and butted me when I tried to get in to grab him. They took the bucket and bread and ate all of it!

Gus was very upset about the sheep incident

The helmet put him over the edge... he didn't even want to try to ride the pony

Not sure what to think about the farm

He just wanted to eat... (moochie sarduchi saw all the lunches for the school kids and he wanted to go searching for something yummy to eat)

I'm thankful that we had a great trip and that Gus wasn't hurt by the sheep. He was scared, and cried, and I was scared too, but he wasn't hurt.

Thursday, April 26, 2012

Open Adoption Roundtable #37

OAR #37: How Do You Feel After A Visit?

I have to say that when we first started our open adoption, I was so nervous to have our first visit with Gus's birth mother's family and his birth father's family (we did separate visits when we first visited). Each of the first visits went extremely well and everyone seemed to be in love with Gus. 

We decided that it's a lot to try to visit my side of our family AND separately visit Gus's side of our family. Since his birth mother and father are still together, we decided to ask if it would be possible to meet all of them in one visit, instead of breaking it up into two separate visits. We were delighted when they all agreed that a gathering for the day would work.

Our first visit with everyone was in August of 2011. Gus was just over a year and we decided to celebrate his birthday too. His Great Aunt and Uncle offered their island house for us to use, and everyone gathered at their place. It was amazing.

We walked away from that first united visit and we were elated. We are going back to MI next month and we'll be celebrating his 2nd birthday with everyone again. I'm expecting a great visit and I can't wait for his entire birth family to see how much he's grown since August! 

After each visit with his birth family, I am so overjoyed. I feel like God placed us all together for a reason and I see them as an extension of my family. They're all wonderful, and I feel like we're as close to them as some of our own biological family members. I love seeing them with Gus, and I love that I have pictures of them all together. These are memories that he probably won't remember, but I want him to never not know them. They're who he is, and are as essential as we are in his life.

I always say a prayer of thanks after we see them and hope that the next visit will come soon.

Wednesday, April 25, 2012

A Year of Gratitude #116

A Year of Gratitude #116: Staying on Track

I am so very proud of myself to staying on track with my walking and eating better. I've been using the app Lose It for keeping a food journal. I love this app because, not only is it free, but it has a built in scanner that lets me scan a barcode for nutritional information. Just like that, I add my food and I can select the amount and it's done.

I am also grateful for the support of friends and family. My mom told me how proud of me that she is, and it means a lot. I feel like I've been on the road to losing weight off and on so many times... and each time she tells me how proud of me she is. I feel like this time is different for some reason. 

It's different because this time, I feel like there's no other option. I simply cannot stay this way and something has to give. It's not fair to me and it's not fair to Gus and Steve. I want to be an active mom for Gus. I want to be able to do fun things with him as he's getting older, and I don't want to be embarassed of my weight, or be unable to participate. 

I have three big things that I'm doing this for. 1) I want to run the Color Run 5K in 2013. 2) I want to be able to take Gus to Disney in a few years and ride everything and walk around and not be exhausted because of carrying extra weight. 3) I want to lose weight so I can see if we can get pregnant. If my weight is what's holding us back... I want to know. If I truly am infertile... okay. But if I'm not, and it's just due to excess weight... I want to lose weight so we can have a baby.

We want to expand our family and as much as I'm 100% open to adoption, it IS expensive. It's RIDICULOUSLY expensive. If we are not able to conceive, we will adopt again. But why not and see if losing weight helps? There's no time like the present.

Lastly, I'm grateful that God has put particular people into my life. I've always been a firm believer that there's a reason for everything... and I think us moving here is the best thing that could have ever happened to us (we just need to sell the house in NC!!!). 

Tomorrow, Gus and I are going to Tanglewood Farm... it's the home of lots of miniature animals (horses, donkeys, cows, pigs, dogs, goats, and sheep). I'm super excited to go. We're going over to Kathryn's to pick her and Aubree up and then we're going to the farm together. 

I got an email from Pilar asking if I wanted to go walking with her before the farm. She's not going to the farm, but asked if I wanted to walk. It's like God sent her into my life to help me with this colossal task. I quickly agreed and we're going to meet at 9... walk for 45 minutes or so, and then I'm going to get Kathryn at 10. 

I hope I don't smell too awful when I pick up Kathryn. It's a good thing we're going to a farm... I can blend in with the animal smell.  :-)

Tuesday, April 24, 2012

A Year of Gratitude #115

A Year of Gratitude #115: A Clean House

So handsome!

Today was interesting. Steve left this morning for NYC and won't be back until very late on Thursday night. I hate when he travels, but I'm thankful that it's not often, and it's usually only for a few days and he's home for the weekend.

Gus got up this morning and we had a bit of time before our cleaning crew arrived. I put his new tie on him that my friend Amie made for him, and took some pictures. I have to say... they are so stinkin' cute. I AM biased... but seriously... he's adorable.

Our cleaning crew came at 8:30 and because it had been so long since they were last here (they were supposed to come last Tuesday, but Dave was here, so we moved it to Friday afternoon, and then she forgot), it took them longer than usual. 

Gus loves when they come. He is so very friendly with them, and they seem to really like him too. Graciela's husband calls Gus, "Batman" each time that he sees him (because Gus was wearing his Batman pjs once when they came). Gus likes to "help" and they're so good about letting him touch their stuff. Gus especially likes their duster... and today he grabbed it on his way downstairs. Graciela told him he could have it until she had to leave. He decided to clean the basement for them...

So delighted to have the duster!

After they left, Gus and I headed upstairs for a bit. Michelle and June came over and brought us Panera (YUMMMM) for lunch. I had a great visit with Michelle and at 1:30 I put Gus down for a nap.
Cowboy Gus

Michelle and June... and Gus spotted her bottle! Thankfully he tried to feed her... and only put it in his mouth once (LOL)

Purry was all up on June. Not sure why he was so fascinated with her, but he tried to get as close to her as possible

After Michelle left, Gus got up... it was like 4:00 or so. When I walked into his room... I instantly smelled it... and I knew he had either thrown up or had a major blow-out. I checked the crib and found nothing... and then I picked Gus up to take him to the changing table... and instantly smelled it and saw it.

It was all up his back, and had filled his diaper and more. When I removed his clothes, I saw that where the poop had been touching, caused his skin to turn deep red and almost looked like it was blistering. OUCH.

So I got him undressed and we went to the tub for a bath. I think the water made him feel better because he was happy, and when he got out, the redness was decreased greatly. I put some Cortisone on his tush to help it feel better.

The rest of our evening was uneventful... but I'm so thankful that on top of all the craziness and stress today, I have a clean house. It's one less thing that I have to worry about or take care of.

Monday, April 23, 2012

A Year of Gratitude #114

A Year of Gratitude #114: The Patience of Others

This morning Gus and I headed to Newtown Park to meet Christy, Pilar, Leslie, and Kimberly for a walk before our playgroup playdate. We had planned on walking before the playdate and then staying at the park and having the kids play there. Kathryn hurt her ankle and was going to just come to the park to meet us.

I was so glad to see that the temperatures for this morning were in the upper 40s/low 50s. PERFECT walking/jogging/running weather if you ask me. I honestly do not know how I'm going to be able to get out and get moving when it's in the 90s. 

We met up and got started on our walk. The loop around the park is just over a mile and quite hilly. It wasn't too much uphill, but it wasn't flat. I felt a burn in my shins and calves that I had not felt in quite some time. When I mentioned to Christy that my shins were on fire she said, "That's a good thing!" Yes... I suppose she was right! If it's burning... you're exercising parts that haven't been exercised in a while!

We walked for about 45 minutes and while I didn't stop at all (I wanted to... believe me), I made it. We didn't run or jog, but we walked at a somewhat brisk pace. It was definitely faster than a casual stroll. At one point the stroller was a lot to push, so Christy offered to push it since Ryan (her son) was in the double stroller with Logan, and Pilar was pushing that.

It was much easier to just walk and not have to worry about the stroller, but it made me think about how it'll be when the time comes to start jogging. I can't even picture myself as a jogger/runner. I think it's because I'm so out of shape, all I can focus on now is picturing myself as active and moving. That's what counts.

I'm thankful that I had four wonderful friends to walk with this morning and that they were very patient with me. Pilar has run a marathon, and she, Christy and Leslie just ran a 5K this past Saturday. They're movers and I am so grateful that they were patient with my pace, and my need to walk instead of jogging or running. 

When we finished, Kimberly gave me a high-five and said, "We did it!" She also wants to start walking/jogging/running and was excited to get out and get moving this morning.

The weather couldn't have been nicer. It was a bit breezy, but I was working up a sweat as I was walking and it felt good to me. 

I'm proud of myself for getting out there and getting 45 minutes of cardio in for the day. I had an apple for breakfast and drank a TON of water. I've been keeping a food journal by using an app that a friend suggested (Lose It). It has helped me stay focused. I entered how much I want to lose and how many pounds a week, and it said that I should be able to meet my goal by April of 2013. So... that's a year. A lot can happen in a year, but my goal is to be running my first 5K in a year... so why not run it at my current goal weight? 

BTW-- it's one year to reach the goal that I set for me at the weight that I am today. It's not the optimal weight for me to be... Once I reach the goal in April 2013, I will reset my goal again and keep striving to attain it. 

Maybe... just maybe... by losing weight, I will be able to get pregnant. Who knows... anything is possible. I just know that carrying additional weight is linked to infertility and maybe that's part of my problem.

Anyway- I'm grateful for the patience and support of my walking pals from today. I look forward to walking with them again!!

Sunday, April 22, 2012

A Year of Gratitude #113

A Year of Gratitude #113: Steve Here While Gus Got Sick (GRAPHIC)

On Friday night/Saturday morning, around three or four am... Gus woke us up whimpering. When we walked into his room, we were met with the strong smell of vomit, and after turning on the lights, we saw that he had thrown up in his crib.

I took care of Gus while Steve took care of the bedding. It wasn't a big deal, and nothing was on Gus (thankfully). We had him back to bed in no time at all, and he wasn't sick for the remainder of the night and was fine all day Saturday.

Then this morning, I made breakfast for us. Steve had already fed Gus some yogurt, some milk, and a few crackers. Because he's teething, I gave him a red popcicle (the popice tubes) and he sat at the kitchen table and ate it. 

I finished making our breakfast (eggs, toast, and sausage patties) and we headed into the living room to eat breakfast while watching some of our shows. I made Gus an egg and some sausage, but didn't know if he'd want to eat it or not.

Steve decided to try and give a bite of his egg to Gus (because Gus wanted to know what Steve was eating and was morphing into Moochie Sarduchi). When Steve put the fork near his mouth, Gus decided he didn't want any, but Steve decided to give him the bite of egg anyway.

Gus was sitting on Steve's lap and had started gaging on the bite of egg. I'm 99% certain, that the gagging is what started the projective vomiting. I looked and saw a faucet of red vomit spew out of Gus's mouth and onto Steve. Then it kept coming... and it was clear that Gus had consumed dairy (if you catch my drift). So disgusting.

Steve was so good though... he held Gus close to him and was able to keep all the vomit contained to him and NOTHING spilled out anywhere else. Not on the chair, or the floor. Steve rushed Gus to our bathroom and put him in the tub. Gus was crying. I'm sure the experience scared him.

Steve stripped Gus and I started the shower and the two of them got in and got cleaned up. Just smelling the vomit on the clothes in the bathroom was enough to make me start gagging. 

If there's one thing that I don't do... it's vomit. I seriously can't stomach it and I get sick myself if I smell it. I can see it... hear it... and I'm fine. But when the smell hits me, I instantly feel queasy and start feeling sick.

After their shower, I took Gus and got him dressed and we headed to the living room to snuggle while Steve rinsed the clothes and put everything into the washer.

The rest of the day was fine... and other than the teething and Gus refusing to nap for more than an hour, it was a good day. My mom called to see how Gus was feeling, and it was nice of her to call.

I'm so VERY... INCREDIBLY thankful that Steve was here when this happened. Had he been traveling (like he will be for the next two weeks), I would have been so stressed trying to care for Gus and clean up vomit, and try to keep myself from puking too.

I pray that we have an uneventful few days while Steve is gone and nothing crazy happens. I'm so grateful that he was here to help and that he took care of the puke so I didn't have to. He's the