Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Time for a lifestyle adjustment!!!

I have been seriously overloading on sugar lately. First it was Valentine's day candy. Now it's Easter candy. Oh yeah - and there were Girl Scout cookies in between....YIKES! I feel like I'm going to give myself diabetes. Take a look at my personal drawer at work...

That's right. TWO boxes of Gobstoppers (my crack - this one's going to take a 12 step program), a bag of snickers, and a bag of jelly beans.

I always come down hard on those people who say "Tomorrow, I'm going to start my diet," or "Monday, I'm going to start working out!" Why not start right now?

So today, I was gathering all my sugar, preparing it for file #13. A big part of me wanted to just finish off the bag of jelly beans, because it was over 1/2 gone anyway. But instead, I settled for a small handful, and tossed the rest. Good job, Steph. Be proud of yourself.

I don't know what's gotten into me lately. I'm still doing well with my other healthful habits. If my darn knee weren't crippled, you know I'd be out logging miles on my tennis shoes. I drink tons of water every day. This was my second bottle:

I've just been a super big sugar junkie lately. It's gotta stop!!! So, I got rid of all the sugar here @ work. I'm tossing the remaining few Girl Scout cookies at home. Now, believe me, I'm NOT sitting here thinking this is going to be a breeze. I have thee biggest sweet tooth ever. Love love love me some sugary goodness!

But it's unhealthy, and it's gotta be seriously limited. I'm not saying I'm never going to eat another cookie or brownie again. It's just going to happen less often. A lot less often. I need to learn to satisfy my sweet tooth with things like fresh fruit instead of sugary, fatty treats.

In fact, my family is coming this weekend, and I've been trying to decide what I'm going to make for food. I was going to make frosted brownies for dessert, but instead, I'm going to make a fruit salad. I know my mom will be good with that. My poor dad will have to suffer through it. He can stop at Dairy Queen on his way home if he wants. :)

So, less sugar! More fresh fruit and healthful choices!!

My life, in pictures

I once again did a horrendous job of taking a photo-a-day. I took 2. Yup. I'm that awesome. The funny part though, is that they totally contradict each other!! Check it out:

Monday 2/20:

My loaded salad. There's nothing better than a loaded chef salad with yummy dressing! Lettuce, ham, chicken, boiled egg, garbanzo beans (necessary), salad toppers, cheese, and croutons. Be jealous. It was amazing.

Tuesday 2/21:

Now, let's go from healthy to diet-wrecker. But seriously - these things are soooooo awesome, no? I have yet to figure out why a Reece's tastes so much better when in egg form, than the normal, crimped-edged cup.

And, that is all. I promise, I'll try to do better this week on pics. I'm not running this week, so I should have more time, right? :o(

Monday, February 27, 2012

A "pictureful" post about our weekend geocaching adventure!

I found (with my H's help of course) 3 caches yesterday, which brings my total up to 5 now. Not a lot, by any standards, but seeing as I've only been geocaching for 2 weeks, I'm happy with that! Let me tell you, having very young kids makes finding time to do things such as geocaching extremely difficult!!

My first cache was located Sunday morning, on my long-ish run. It was just shy of 3 miles northeast, located on the towpath. Perfect. So I headed out. Turns out, my iPhone GPS has been remarkable accurate. I found this cache pretty quickly. As you can see, it was rigged by a pulley-like device, and it was hanging up high in a tree.

It required that I unwind the twine, and lower it down.

So I did, of course. It was a typical cache, with just some simple toys and tradeable in it.

But it was placed in honor of the hider's friend, who had passed away suddenly and tragically (no details).

That was it for my morning caching. I finished up my run, and headed home. But that afternoon, after Hendrix woke up from his nap, we headed back out to log a couple more! The were both located in the Beaver Creek Preserve, about a mile from our house.

To say it was muddy would be an understatement! The high on Sunday was near 43 degrees, and the sun was shining. The ground was NOT frozen, and where we were walking had no grass. You get the picture. The first cache was in a grove of trees, which you can see below. Getting to it was kind of crazy. I ended up carrying H part of the way, due to basically having to bushwhack our way to the woods! :)

We found the first container after about 5 minutes of searching. It was located under a big piece of tree bark.

Hendrix helped me open it to discover its contents!

As you can see, the container was pretty water-logged. It contained a couple small tradeables.

We covered it back up as we found it, and headed on for the next cache. It was cold, and we were caked in mud. I kept asking Hendrix if he wanted to keep searching, or go home. The little trooper wanted to "find more treasure!"

The next cache was about 500 feet from the first. We just walked to it. It was near this log jam in the creek. Nature can do some crazy things. Impressive, huh?

This little man insists on wearing this hat anywhere we go. You can never see his eyes, and I don't know how he sees where he's going, but.....try reasoning with a two-year-old. Let me know how that goes for ya.

After a short amount of searching.....we located it!

The cache was the same as the others that I/we'd come across. Just trinkets and tradeables. I'm waiting for that cache that wows me a bit more.

Hendrix liked this one a lot though, and latched onto a plastic toy panda bear (which you can't see in the above picture because it was in his hands!). "Sorry, buddy. We didn't bring anything to trade, we gotta leave the bear in there."

And lastly, a picture of our shoes after our geocaching trek through the wintertime wilderness. You better believe these things got pounded and shaken off, then made a beeline straight into the washing machine!

It was a fun little adventure for my little blond man and I. I've got my eyes on a few more nearby caches I'd like to try and find this coming weekend. Hopefully it won't be such a muddy trek this time! And it'll also be March this weekend. Come on, nature. Warmer temps very much welcomed!!!

Fitness 2012: Week 9 (Feb 26 - Mar 3)

Sunday 2/26:
Ran 6.8 miles

The goal here was 9 miles. As you know from my previous "Fitness 2012" post, I've been dealing with some knee pain. I was really hoping that an easy week of elliptical-only exercise would do the trick. Well....not so much. I set out on this run with high hopes. I ended this run barely able to move, and almost in tears - not from pain, but from disappointment. I hobbled the last 1/2 mile home, and iced my knee. I took ibuprofen, and it got to feeling better later in the day - enough so that Hendrix and I went out on a little geocaching hunt - more on that later. Today (Mon, 2/27), it's very stiff and sore, and I'm taking more ibuprofen and icing it for periods of 15-20 minutes at a time. I'm soooo frustrated!

I'm now unsure whether I have runner's knee, or ITBS, so I'm taking precautionary measures against both. The main component of those treatments: rest. I'm resting, icing, taking ibuprofen. Today, I ordered a couple braces for my leg and knee that are supposed to help with these ailments, and I also ordered a foam roller. This scares me a little bit, but I know its necessary. It scares me because I've heard if you have sore muscles, foam rolling can be pretty painful, but it also helps tremendously. We shall see how it goes.

So needless to say, it's going to be another very low-mileage week. :( I did get to see a very pretty sunset over the river on my run Sunday morning though!

And a really cool house along the towpath! You can't really tell from the picture, but almost the entire back of this house is windows, overlooking the river. So neat!

Ok, so I guess that's it. I have a bona fide excuse for laziness this week, and I'm NOT happy about it. Encouraging words are appreciated!!!!!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Fitness 2012: Week 8

I took this week VERY easy, due to having had some pretty nasty pain in my right knee on my last few runs. It was challenging, but I didn't run at all this week. Believe me, I wanted to. But I didn't. Instead, I used the elliptical machine at work, during my lunch breaks, for some lower impact cardio sessions.

Sun 2/19:

Mon 2/20:

Tues 2/21:
Elliptical: 5.5 miles, 342 calories burned

Weds 2/22:

Thurs 2/23:
Elliptical: 5.5 miles, 325 calories burned

Fri 2/24:
Elliptical: 2.5 miles, 208 calories burned
(I spent the remainder of my lunch break rushing to and power walking through Sam's Club, so that counts for a few more calories, right? Hahaha!)

Sat 2/25:
Rest - Trip home to Elwood

It felt weird and lazy not running, but I'm looking forward to getting back on my legs for a (hopefully) pain-free run on Sunday morning!

Since these weren't running miles, I'm not counting them towards my mileage for the week/month/year, so the stats this week are the same as last week.

Miles for the week: 0 <----I HATE looking at that.
Miles for the month: 37.91
Miles for the year: 93.96

Thursday, February 23, 2012

I love Easter!

Ash Wednesday was yesterday. It's hard to believe it's the Easter season already! The stores are stocked with pastels and baskets. Crocuses are going to be blooming shortly. You can't find a meat item anywhere on a menu on Fridays.....yep, it's here!

The best thing about Easter is obvious:

THIS, my friends, is the second best thing!!! :)

Why are Reece's Peanut butter cups so much better when they're in the form of an egg? I guess I shouldn't question it, just enjoy.

Happy Lent to all you who practice the fasting.

Tuesday, February 21, 2012

Know Stephanie Better...

10 Things I Fiercely Believe In

When it comes to my kids, the small moments matter!

I believe in God, and that there is heaven and hell after we die.

We only go around once in this life, and it is imperative to take care of yourself physically, mentally, and emotionally, while doing what makes you happy.

Equality. Enough said on this one.

Material things and possessions matter about as much as that speck of dirt on my sliding glass doors - they don't at all.

If you try to make everyone happy, you yourself will be beyond miserable. You have to do what makes you happy in life.

A sense of humor does a lot for stress relief, and making life's struggles just a bit easier.

A person's past has shaped who they are today, but they are NOT a reflection of the mistakes they've made.

Life is not meant to be lived inside four walls, sitting on the couch, watching TV!!!

I fiercely believe in my family, in our unity, in our love.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Geocaching Adventure

Well, as I mentioned a couple days ago, I've discovered and have been researching the game of geocaching. It's a hobby that's a bit "geeked out," I know. Matt has been borderline making fun of me (in a loving way of course) but I don't care. I found the lizard geocache the other night on my run, and knew that there are several more hidden in close proximity to our house. So I planned on finding more!

I decided to take Hendrix with me, for a little "treasure-hunting" adventure for him, and also just to get the kid out of the house for some fresh (BRISK!) air. We went across the street and found the lizard cache again. You can see from his curious face that he wasn't quite sure what was going on, but he thought he was cool!

After re-finding the lizard, we moved on to the far west end of Grand Rapids. Without revealing the location (sorry, I'm a geocacher now....can't reveal our secrets to muggles ----THAT, folks, seriously makes me laugh), I'll say that we found our second cache in a magnetic container, attached to the inside of a metal covering on a utility pole. It took a bit of searching - more than the 1st one I found - but it wasn't too difficult to locate. It was a small box and contained the log, and a couple decorative erasers. We didn't have anything to leave in the cache, so we didn't take anything. But I'm tellin' ya, the thrill of finding it was enough for me. I was so geeked and excited!

After making sure all of our bills and necessary items are paid for, I think I'm going to download the geocaching app for my iPhone. Seriously hoping for some warmer temps next weekend! :)

My Life, in Pictures...

Well, it's been another week of me not going so great with snapping a picture every day. Really, Steph. How hard is it? Anyway, here's what I got this past week:

Monday 2:13:

Something melodious. My favorite band, Camila!

Tuesday 2:14:

My routine - at least 64 ounces of water a day! (I'm working on upping that to around 80.....that's a LOT of water, by the way.) Got the off-brand of the Mio to give my water a little taste. It's not too bad!

Friday 2/17:

Something fat - ok, i totally made that up. While my little piggy is quite the fatty pants, he's just too darn adorable to NOT take pictures of him! This is him in the bath with brother, who thought he needed to wear a rag on his head.

Saturday 2/18:

Hendrix, who fell this weekend and kissed the pavement. Poor guy busted both his top and bottom lips, and scraped his chin pretty good. Luckily, no teeth were chipped or knocked loose.

Thursday, February 16, 2012

I fear I may be turning into a bit of a geek...

Have you heard of geocaching? I'd heard the term, but never knew what it meant. Yesterday, I was browsing the website for the Wabash-Cannonball Trail, on which I plan on running Sunday morning. I was browsing the "attractions" section, and it listed geocaching as one of the attractions. I'd heard this term before, but never really knew what it was. Until now.

You can find more info via and wikipedia. Basically, people go out (out doors) and hide objects (or containers with objects inside of them) called "caches", log the location of the cache by GPS coordinates, then put these coordinates online. Then, people who are interested in geocaching go to the website, see where the caches are located, then go out and find them.

So, at first, I was confused and didn't really get the coolness of this game. But the more I read about it, the more intrigued I became. I pulled up a map from the geocaching website, and much to my geeky excitement, discovered that there was a cache hidden basically right across the street from my house! Ok, I was now obligated to find it, right? (Agree with me, people.)

So, I went on a four-mile run last evening, and planned my route so that I ended the run where the cache was hidden. I planned on looking for the cache for no more than 5 minutes. It was dark, and it was drizzling. However, I found it fairly quickly. It was a plastic lizard, stuck inside a hollow tree trunk (I'll get and post a pic soon). Wierd, yeah. Cool? Pretty much. :D So, I went home, and was on the computer anyway, downloading my run info from my Garmin, so I stopped by the geocaching website and logged that I found the cache.

I'm not gonna lie. I'm pretty excited to go find some more. I think that on Saturday morning, I'm going to take Hendrix to find the lizard, since it's so close to home. I think he'll absolutely love it. Plus, once he's a bit older, I think geocaching would be an awesome activity to do as a family. When I zoomed out on the cache map, there are literally, millions of them hidden all over the world. And soooooo many (I'm talking thousands) right near our house, and in the northwest Ohio area.

Yep. I'm geeked about it. Stay tuned for new posts about my prospective new love: geocaching.

Wednesday, February 15, 2012

Know Stephanie Better

Write about something - or someone - that defines you.

This one's not hard! My children define me.

As you know, if you've followed my blog for any length of time, that I've gotten very into running and maintaining a healthy lifestyle lately. I've worked for a great company for going on four years now. I try to keep a clean house, and my social life is extremely unexciting.

But you also know that three years ago, my husband and I conceived a little life. We knew - thanks to every single person with whom we spoke about our pregnancy - that "our lives would be changed forever." But we didn't begin to realize how. Our lives were so enhanced and brightened that we decided to conceive another little life ten months later.

So, after two of the most awesome experiences of my life on November 19th, 2009, and June 24th, 2011, Matt and I were the parents of two precious little boys. Sometimes I still look at my life, and I'm like, "Wow!" There was a period in my life - my teenage years through my early twenties - that I had no interest in marriage, let alone children. I couldn't see myself rocking a baby, being up at 6 am on Saturdays and Sundays, changing diapers, speaking baby talk, etc. Ick, it just wasn't me.

But after I met Matt and realized that we were going to spend forever together (ok, gushy moment over), my thinking began to change and we became parents. And then we did it again.

Parenting has taught me patience. It's taught me resignation. It's taught me that some things are absolutely worth fighting for, and other things aren't worth the fight at all. It's reminded me how quickly time really does pass. It teaches me every day to forget the work worries at the door, to take off my shoes, and to get down on the floor and build that choo-choo train and set off on an adventure to fight alligators and monsters. It's showed me a love that I truly never imagined possible. It's also showed me how amazing God's mercy and forgiveness is. After some of the bad choices I've made in my past, I'm still forgiven in His eyes, and to show me that, he blessed me with my two beautiful boys, who I cherish so closely in my heart.

My sons make me so irritated. They force me to walk away in order to collect myself. They make me cry. They stress me out and have already - in my 27th year of life - given me at least 1 gray hair. They make me feel guilty, and they make me doubt myself - almost daily. They have me searching for advice on the internet, then feeling worthless if I'm not following it.

But my sons also make me happy. They are the reasons for my smile on my worst days. They have me laughing so hard, that I pee a little. They motivate me to accomplish things. They keep me sane, when work gets crazy (ever find yourself sitting at work, then busting out in out-loud laughter just at the thought of your adorable kid?). They've taught me naivety and childlike innocence. The allow me to cut myself off from the negativity in the world and just enjoy playing make-believe in our small playroom upstairs. I live in the moment with them. I absolutely can't get enough of the conversations we've started having. I've learned to truly appreciate my parents' love for me, based on how much and how unconditionally I love my children.

I really have no idea who I'd be if I didn't have my boys today. I love my husband, he's great! But if it were still just us two, I think I'd be fat and lazy! Hehehehe. These boys of mine occupy every one of their waking minutes, between bath time, meals, diapers, play time, bed time....the list goes on. But what would I be doing if it wasn't taking care of them? Sitting on my tush, watching TV and eating takeout? Ick!

Yes, these boys are my world and I love them beyond the slightest hint of anything that words can describe. I'm normally a quiet, keep-to-myself kind of person. But when people start discussing kids, and I have a chance to bring mine into the conversation, it's almost comical to watch how I suddenly become so animated.

So - without a doubt - my children define the person I am today, in early 2012. I'm a mother before I'm anything else, and I will be that person for the rest of my days. :)

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

Valentine's Day sweet treats

Hendrix and I put together some sweet treats for Valentine's day last evening. I got the recipe here. I'd never made popcorn balls before, so it was a new experience.

First, I popped a couple bags of microwave popcorn, and put it in a greased 9x13 baking dish. I kept the popcorn warm in a 200 degree oven while I was doing the next steps.

I melted a bag of mini-marshmallows with a 1/2 cup of butter (1 full stick) in a large dutch oven pan. Hendrix was my stirring helper. He discovered that the pan gets hot. Poor guy. No real injuries though, just a bit of a shock to him. After the marshmallows were completely melted, Hendrix added some red food coloring. Then he added some more! We ended up with this pink goo.

Then we took the popcorn out of the warm oven and poured the goo all over it. I did the next part, due to the heat: mixing the popcorn up so that it's all evenly coated in the goo (sorry, I like "goo" better than "marshmallow mixture!"). The recipe I was following said to coat your hands with cooking spray or butter, but I learned that simple water works much better. So I mixed. It was hot. But I'm tough, so I kept mixing. ;)

Once the popcorn was all coated and mixed, I waited a few minutes for it to cool a bit, then added a small bag of M&M's. Then, I mixed some more. (Lots of mixing here.) Then, I grabbed small handfuls, and squeezed the popcorn together. These things don't just magically stick together with no effort. You have to SQUEEZE! Then, as they're cooling, the tend to fall apart, so you have to squeeze some more. But overall, a fairly simple process, and a cute treat that I got to send to the babysitter with my Hendrix man.

And, this little guy was quite thrilled to be able to help! (Ok, pleeeease ignore the mess in the kitchen. It's embarrassing, but hey.....we were having fun.) He just loves being able to help in the kitchen lately. I let him pour, stir, shake, whatever he can do that's safe, I let him do. He's my little helper. Love this man!

We don't have any plans for Valentine's Day today. Honestly, it's just another day to me. I just took the opportunity as an excuse to make a yummy treat. :) We're having leftover spaghetti for dinner, and then we'll play with the kiddos and probably try to get a little housework done (remember the list? Always in the back of my noggin!).

What about you? Any special plans for this "holiday?"

Monday, February 13, 2012

Pre-spring cleaning - how'd it go?

Remember this post? I wanted to use this weekend to get started on my pre-spring cleaning, in hopes that if I started early enough, I'd maybe be able to accomplish everything I hoped to this year.

I said I wasn't going to make a list, but you know me...... Here's my list, and you can see what got crossed off this weekend (in black, italic font).

Clean Oven ----- it's now sparkling!
Clean out microwave
Wipe out cupboards
Clean out fridge
Mop floor
Clean ceiling fan ----- no more dust bunnies up there.

Clean light fixtures
Organize medicine cabinet
Unclog sink
Scour sink and shower
Scour toilet
Re-Organize closet

Dining Room
Organize bookshelf/desk
Mop floor
Clean window/sliding glass doors
Clean table (including the boys' chairs) ---- Table is nice and be continued.
Clean ceiling fan ---- no more dust bunnies!

Laundry Room
Dust off water heater
Organize "pantry" area

Living Room
Dust everything
Clean carpet
Clear off/organize hearth
Wash windows
Clean ceiling fans

Organize closets
Clean ceiling fans
Dust everything
Re-arrange furniture
Get rid of toys from the toy-room, re-organize it.

Not too great, huh? I'm going to keep at it though. I want all this list to be in black, italic font before April gets here. That gives me about a month and a half. I can do this!

My Life, in pictures...

Sunday, 2/5: Superbowl goodies! Nacho dip and zucchini brownies. Mmm.

Monday 2/6: Sewing supplies for a skirt tutorial I want to eventually get to.

Tuesday 2/7: (This was taken by the babysitter - I can't take credit) Hendrix with his buddies Wes and Tyler, looking out the window at a tractor!

Wednesday 2/8: Fresh pineapple - Yummmmm!

Thursday 2/9: (Babysitter took this - Again, I can't take credit) Hendrix and Wes napping together on the couch. Love this! <3

Saturday 2/11: My smeared, running mascara after an extremely COLD (and short) run. Brrr!

Fitness 2012: Week 7 (Sun 2/12 - Sat 2/18)

Sunday 2/12: Rest Day

Monday 2/13: I ran 3.13 miles with a pace around 9:12.

Tuesday 2/14: Rest day

Wednesday 2/15: I ran 4.25 miles. I thought I had shut the timer off on the watch when I stopped running, but had apparently left it on, for about 15 extra minutes. So that jacked with my pace seriously. Grr. Irritating. I'm guessing pace was somewhere around 9:45.

Thursday 2/16: Rest Day

Friday 2/17: Rest Day

Saturday 2/18: I ran 9.00 miles (longest yet!) on the Wabash Cannonball Trail, early Saturday morning. While I'm proud to put this distance down, it was NOT without difficulty. I've been having pain in my right knee, and after doing some web research (I know, I know...the internet is not a substitute for a doctor), I'm 99% sure I have runner's knee. The good news about this is that it appears to be something that I can take care of on my own, without going to a doctor. Here's my problem: I push myself too hard sometimes (ok, most of the time).

I need to stay off my knee next week and rest. You know how hard that's going to be for me?!? I'm going to do my best to do non-impact exercise such as the elliptical or exercise bike this week. The LAST thing I want to have happen is to really injure myself, then not be able to run this race. I would seriously cry.

So, as of this week:

Miles for the week: 16.28
Miles for February: 37.91
Miles for 2012: 93.96

I'm sad to say that I won't see myself hit 100 miles for the year this week, since I'm resting, but I can look forward to that next week!

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Pre-spring cleaning?

Every year, around March, I get in the mood for spring cleaning. I make a huge long list of things that need done, and I complete ohhhhh, about a third of those things. I don't know what is wrong with me, but I can NEVER get everything done that I need to do!

Anyone with young children can appreciate it and sympathize with me when I say that my boys keep me busy and constantly exhausted. But how long or how often can I use that as an excuse? The clutter absolutely drives me insane....I've got to find a way to conquer it!

I've decided that I may start my cleaning early this year, so that I don't feel so stressed to get it all done in a span of 2 or 3 weeks. I'm trying NOT to make a list, either (a very difficult thing for this habitual list-maker). I think maybe that intimidates me a bit.

The other evening after dinner, I got this crazy notion to scour and clean the stove. I must say - I VERY much enjoyed the result:

Don't you just love the squeaky cleanliness of it?? I get very excited about the prospect of having a house that - at least temporarily, I have young kids after all - looks like this.

I'm going to start this weekend, and just do a small section of the house at a time. I'm going to deep clean. I'm going to dust, get cobwebs, vacuum, re-organize, re-arrange, etc etc etc. We've lived in our house for almost three years now. It desperately needs done. I feel that when we put off cleaning, just because we're tired, or aren't in the mood, that it is kind of immature and lazy. Part of being an adult is maintaining a clean and orderly house.

So.....I'm going to do it! Wish me luck! :)

Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Fitness 2012: Week 6 (2/5/12 - 2/11/12)

Sunday, 2/5: I ran 8.05 miles with an average pace of 9:24. This has definitely been my best run so far!

Tuesday, 2/7: I ran 4.05 miles, after the boys were in bed with an average pace of 9:47.

Thursday, 2/9: I ran 2.18 miles after the boys were in bed with an average pace of 9:15. I ran a shorter distance in preparation for a 9 mile run on Saturday on.

Saturday, 2/11: I ran 2.20 miles first thing in the morning with an average pace of 9:19. This day was a big disappointment. I had been planning all week on doing a long 9-mile run Saturday morning. I could see as soon as I woke up that it wasn't going to happen. It had snowed about 2 inches, and the last time I attempted a long run in snow, my legs were so sore I could barely walk for about 3 days. But I got dressed and headed out anyway, the new goal being 3 miles. To say it was cold outside would be a gross understatement. I didn't check the temp until I got back home, but it was 11 degrees, with a windchill of -6. At about 1.6 miles, my eyes (the only exposed part of my face) were so cold that they started burning, and at that point I decided that it wasn't just cold, it was dangerously cold outside. I'm trying to train for a race, not injure myself. So I went home. We'll try again this weekend, and hope for no snow, and a bit warmer temps!

Total miles for the week: 16.48

Total miles for the month: 21.63

Total miles for the year: 56.05

(I really like keeping track of my mileage. How fun to see what I've accomplished!)

Tuesday, February 7, 2012

Know Stephanie Better

My Dream House

My dream house would be located very near to where I currently live. Matt and I aren't from Ohio. We've lived over here for almost 4 years now, and it's definitely feeling like home these days. When we travel to Indiana to visit family, I no longer say, "We're going home for a visit." When we "go home," its when we travel back to Ohio. I love where we live. Grand Rapids is such a cute and quiet little burg, and it feels very safe.

That being said, if I were able to build my dream house, I'd buy a plot of wooded land, right along the Maumee river. We'd clear out enough of the woods to have a big yard for the boys. I'd have a two story house, though if money were no object, I'd install an elevator! The house would also have a full finished basement.

So, we'll start from the ground up. :) The finished basement would be the square footage of the whole house. It'd have carpet, a pool table, and a wet bar! We'd have a little home theatre with a projection screen on the wall with a huge comfy sectional couch on which to watch movies.

On the first floor, we'd have somewhat dark colored hardwood floors throughout. In my kitchen, I'd have stainless steel appliances, my microwave over my oven (hey, I appreciate the small things in life!). We'd have very tall ceilings, with wood beams showing. There'd be a bath and a half downstairs, along with the living room, a dining room, and a home office.

Upstairs, there'd be 4 bedrooms (one of which is our master suite), and another full bath. I like carpet in bedrooms, so we'd have nice soft carpet all throughout the second floor, though the stairs would be wooden, to match the floors on the 1st level. At the top of the stairs, there'd be a balcony area where you could look down on the living room. We'd have a small balcony off of our second story master suite, too!!

There would be a 4 car heated garage - for when the boys start driving, of course. Outside of our house, we'd have a nice decorative stone patio with pretty landscaping. We'd have an in ground pool, and a LOT of lush green grass to run around on, and throw a football on (with a hired guy that looks good without his shirt on to maintain it all, of course!) The river would be visible from our yard, and we would be able to sit out on our patio on summer evenings with a glass of wine and listen to the sounds of the river.

This may not sound like anything too exciting to some people. I don't need a castle. I don't need my house to be built on a sea cliff in southern Italy (though I'm not arguing that that wouldn't be nice!). I'd just like a nice, newly built large home in which to raise my two boys. Maybe someday........

***sighs longingly***

Monday, February 6, 2012

Fitness 2012: Week 5 (Sun 1/29 - Sat 2/4)

My runs are getting longer, as they should. The 1/2 marathon is only ten weeks away! I officially registered this week. I'm accountable now!!

Monday 1/30: 4.05 miles
Ave. Pace: 9:57

Wednesday 2/1: 5.15 miles
Ave Pace: 10:05

Total miles for the week: 9.20 miles.

I've got an exciting run from Sunday to share next week. :)

My life, in pictures...

I didn't get a picture taken each day this week, but I still got 5 out of 7 days. :)

MONDAY 1/31/12:

Monday morning's sunrise. This picture doesn't do it justice, of course. It was glowing, neon orange, and very beautiful. Hendrix and I enjoyed talking about it as I dropped him off at the babysitter's house!

TUESDAY 1/31/12:
The first month of 2012 is over already. Wow! All the orange highlights are runs that I went on during January. You can see that my mileage total for the month was 34.42 miles. I'm pretty proud of that!


Matt rubbed my foot as I iced my knee with a package of frozen potatoes after a 5 mile run on Wednesday. :o)

FRIDAY 2/3/12:

Our boss bought us candies, as a bribe, as we take on the responsibilities of a temp who is leaving Schindler. No one else seems to want to eat these chocolates, so I guess the responsibility is left to me.....sigh. :D

SATURDAY 2/4/12:

Hendrix helped me make zucchini brownies on Saturday. I'm pretty sure he wore more of the ingredients than went into the bowl!