Monday, July 26, 2010

Naomi's First 10K!

(Pictures were taken on Naomi's SUPER LAME camera phone because we forgot to bring the real camera!)

Well I did it! I checked off another part of my goal this year to run a 5K, 10K, 1/2 Marathon, and Marathon by January 2011, and it felt AWESOME! Kevin and I woke up at 5am on Saturday, July 24th, got dressed to run, woke up and dressed our girls, and then hopped in the car to go pick up our babysitter, Alexa. It was POURING rain when we got outside and there was thunder so loud that it was scaring me as much as it was scaring my kids! We were worried that the race would be canceled but we made the hour drive north anyway in case the weather felt like going easy on us.

When we got to the race site in Hoffman Estates, IL the storm was still raging, but there were other runners there and we had hope that we would get to race and wouldn't be "out" our registration fee. Everyone was huddled under a bridge-ish-thingy waiting for the announcement that soon came...we WOULD be racing! Just a half hour later than we had expected. This gave me plenty of time to panic, stress, and go pee 7 times before the race started! (I get the nervous peepees when I'm...well, nervous!)

The extra half hour passed and we lined up at the start line in the now, less-than-scary rain. I was hyperventilating a little while thoughts of my stupidity raced through my brain. 6.2 miles! Kevin does stuff like that, not me! I dance, hike, and play with kids! But running is for crazy people like Kevin, Becca, and Natalie. Fast people with nice legs and a competitive edge. I was very aware of the fact that the rain had scared away all the non-serious runners like myself, leaving me at the end of the pack with my 15 minute miles. And truthfully, although I'm not a very competitive person, I didn't really want to come in last place!

BEEP! The buzzer went off and it was time to run! I had my i pod wrapped in saran wrap (to protect it from the rain) and safety pinned to my pants, blaring my favorite tunes as I started my slow trot around the course. I had started near the front of the pack but within the first 5 minutes of running, there were only about 10 people left behind me! Wow! I knew I was slow but honestly, being passed by a couple hundred people in just a couple hundred seconds is REALLY discouraging!

It rained for the first mile but then it stopped, leaving dark clouds behind to block the sun and cool the air. I was just noticing how much nicer it was to run in the cool weather when we came running in to the first water stop, 1.5 miles into the race! Woohoo! I usually feel like death for my first mile but I didn't even notice how far I'd gone. Maybe I would survive after all. I took some water (spilled all over myself) and kept going. Soon a girl dressed entirely in pink passed me by and I happened to look at her face and notice how zoned out and happy she was. She was in her own world and was having a blast even though she was just barely faster than me. Her attitude inspired me and made me happy as well. The rest of the run I was smiling ear to ear, not noticing my sweat, fatigue, or slowness at all!

Soon I got to my fifth mile and the course split. The 1/2 marathoners kept going straight into the forest preserve and the 10K-ers turned left and headed back to the finish line. I had been pacing off the pink girl the whole time but she ended up going the way of the 1/2, so I was alone again being passed by the fast 1/2 marathoners who had now rejoined the course. It was in that moment that I realized I wasn't tired at all, in fact, I had a huge surge of energy! So I started to run faster...and faster...and faster, and before I knew it I was rounding the last bend and exploding with energy! Everyone was cheering me on for sprinting which made me go faster and then I saw the clock, ran under it, and was DONE!

I finished in 1:14:51! I think that puts me at a 12 minute mile pace which is 3 minutes faster per mile than my 4 mile race in May! I think I came in 87th out of 100 people, so I wasn't in last place and I was VERY proud of myself! Once I wiped the silly grin off my face, I drank some Gatorade, found Alexa and the girls, and then we waited for Kevin to finish the 1/2 marathon! (He'll have to tell you about his experience some other time!) Anyway, I'm super pumped that I can do hard things and am excited for my upcoming 1/2 marathon in September, as well as the Red Rock Relay I will be running around the same time! Wish me luck!

Friday, July 9, 2010

4th of July Weekend!

Over the 4th of July weekend, Kevin's old high school buddy Isaac, his wife Heidi, and their adorable daughter Esther came over for a visit. We chatted for awhile, ate some AWESOME pizza, and then headed over to the Eyes to the Sky Festival in Lisle.

Pretty much the whole festival was about entertaining Brooklyn, but the rest of us didn't mind watching her have a fun time. They were offering free princess makeovers in one of the booths so we took Brooklyn to get cheek sparkles and a tiara. She felt so special getting dressed up like a princess and loved the extra attention!

There was also a Free princess bounce house that we had a VERY hard time getting Brooklyn out of, which was actually pretty nice since all the rest of the rides were $4 a pop! We did manage to get Brooklyn on the Merry-go-round though, and she got to be the proud rider of a "chicken-horse".

Esther and Lily (who are a week apart in age) couldn't really do anything at the festival but they both had a blast being carted around in their strollers and were just as happy as could be to be chillin outside with us.

After we got home, our guests packed up and headed to a relative's house. Kevin said his goodbyes and then quickly got busy on his weekend project!

The only way this man can relax is if he is doing something that requires physical labor. So, in light of his extra day off, he set to work building a miniature Adirondack chair for Brooklyn that we saw on the Knock Off Wood blog.

Brooklyn immediately realized that the chair was to small for us and was thrilled that her daddy was doing a special project just for her. After Kevin finished it, she spent the entire day lounged out in her green chair. (She even picked the paint color!)

Here is the side view of the finished project. I think it looks really cute on our front porch and the best part about it was we almost built the whole thing out of the scraps from my headboard so it basically cost nothing!

We didn't get pictures of the whole weekend, but it also included a fantastic BBQ dinner with our friends, the Noordas, and their wonderful neighbors, and a lot of rest and relaxation. We missed our families but were just happy to at least have each other!

Tuesday, July 6, 2010

Closing Out the Rest of June!

June was a fun and exciting month for our little family. So exciting in fact, that I ran out of time to blog! So here are a few pictures from some of our highlights:

I had this old dress that ripped to shreds, but before throwing it away I gave it to Brooklyn and let her play dress up. She wore it for the entire morning until nap time when I made her take it off...much to her chagrin!

A wonderful lady in our ward helped take care of Brooklyn while I was in Utah, so I returned the favor...sort watching her kids while she and her husband went to a movie. Brooklyn LOVED having extra kids around and they played hard all day!

Kevin's cousins, Nick and Lachelle, invited us to go camping with them in Indiana. We ended up at this funny camp ground.

Camping with a 4 month old meant making some minor adjustments on the way our tent was set up, but we managed. In fact, Lily did great and slept all through the night despite a MAJOR thunderstorm that rolled through at 2 in the morning.

Nick and Lachelle did their homework before we got together and found a really neat beach for us to hang out at the next day. We don't have any pictures but I can guarantee you that it was the best day of Brooklyn's entire life! Even Lily enjoyed splashing around in the waves.

Highlights from the camp out:

Kevin brought glow sticks for the kids that ended up being "light sabers"
Nick and Lachelle helped the kids catch fireflies
The crazy thunderstorm that soaked all our stuff
Keyton singing Weird Al's Yoda song (forgive me Hanks family for not knowing the name)
Watching Brooklyn get excited about peeing on a log for the first time.

Lowlights from the camp out:

Wearing wet clothes because our tent flooded
Sharing our shelter from the storm with hundreds of slugs, spiders, and earwigs
Being covered in spider bites

We all left looking like dirty hobos, but that didn't stop Brooklyn from making me put her hair up like a "princess" in the morning!

Lily was a pleasure to have along and truly handled herself like a champ! She is Kevin's daughter all the way and I have a feeling we will have many more pleasurable camp outs with her in the long as she can keep herself from getting milk drunk again!

And the last random thing for the month, We blew up our little swimming pool and let the girls play in it, both with and without water. They had SO much fun together which meant I had fun too. I love watching my girls play together. It is one of those great rewards for a mother.