the double-digit club

Two mornings ago I woke up, had a small bowl of Aldi-brand Cheerios, a quick cup of coffee, and then went for a little jog. For ten miles. It was about 16,000 steps. It took me one hour and thirty-nine minutes and felt like it took approximately six days.

See, in this crazy-for-me experiment I’m calling, “Training for a Half-Marathon”, running is still a chore. I keep waiting for the love to overtake me, I keep waiting for a high or thrill or something resembling joy in regards to running, but it’s yet to happen.

I like running, I guess. It’s a great workout. I’ve learned a lot about my own ability to keep going, put one foot in front of the other, to run through the aches and pains, and I do like that I’m slowly building up to a race that not a lot of people can do. But am I in love with running? Do I crave it on my off days, look forward to it?

I have to admit, it’s a big resounding “NO”.

Being able to run ten miles at an average pace of about ten minutes per mile is a huge accomplishment from where I started from back in August when I started training. And three weeks ago I ran eight miles on a busy trail clogged with bikers and other fellow runners and it was almost fun, but, once my goal is finished, I can’t imagine missing it much.

I miss my group fitness classes and the routine of going to the gym every morning and sweating it out with a mix of cardio, jumping, and weights. Running is by far a better overall workout, but it’s boring.

My husband adores running. He comes in from a run, soaked in sweat, with a big grin on his face. I feel like I come in missing half my limbs and somehow more depressed than when I started. Ok, that’s a bit of a stretch, but like I said above, the “love” isn’t there. Running isn’t something I discovered on my own, we don’t have a romantic love story built up over time … it’s an arranged marriage that is dependable and good for me but that’s about it. I run because I have to run because I chose to do a half, and that’s about as sentimental as I can get for it.

In a little more than a month the race is here. I’ll stand with about 1,100 fellow runners and trudge it out. My secret silly goal is to run it in under 2 hours, which is probably a stretch. I ran those eight miles two weeks ago at a 9 minute-15-second pace, but this week’s ten miles was 9:58, and to get 13.1 miles done in under 120 minutes I’d need to do about a 9:09 pace.  I also just discovered my times (so far) look like I could possibly place in the “Athena 160+” Category, which means I’d run among the fastest of women who are comfortable admitting to the public they weigh more than 160 pounds. So, yay for a higher than average body mass?

When this is all said and done I will be glad I worked hard and made it to the goal. It’s also pretty cool to find something recreational to do with my husband, although we haven’t been able to train much together (remember, we have three kids). I would like to keep going to fun 5k runs and maybe a few 10k’s, but so far that running bug that so many other people Instagram and Tweet and Blog about is meeting me with a bunch of resistance.

And that’s ok.

Maybe once I’m done training I’ll realize what a good fit running is for me and, like the above comparison to arranged marriage I made, I’ll realize I actually have loved it, all along. Maybe. No fingers crossed here but I can admit my feelings can always change.

stop! don’t read anything else about parenting until you learn how to do this ONE parenting hack!

The ONE parenting hack you need to know! You won’t BELIEVE what you’ll learn! EVERY PARENT MUST KNOW THIS!

Yes, this title is clickbait. Yes, this topic is disgusting. But, as I sit here in my dim living room, craving, just craving a glass of wine followed by a long, uninterrupted night of sleep, I have to admit, I DO know the number one, absolute and smartest way to clean $hit out of the bathtub.

Stop bathing your kids.

I mean, really. If they aren’t toilet trained you can give them baths with baby-wipes just fine. How dirty do they get anyway? Sure, once they are crawling and toddling and picking up dirt and trying to eat the playground bark and prefer eating by their hands and they end each day with grime on their fingers and feet and necks, you’d need at least two dozen wipes per kid, but, at least you won’t find yourself scooping poop out of a tub with a very unfortunate plastic robot cup to the sounds of screaming children in the background.

So, if you feel like bathing is sorta essential, having a game plan in mind when poo happens is smart. I’ve learned through experience you should always scoop the log out of the bath, before you drain the tub. When your daughter has loose bowels it’s not as easy is that, but you can still get the biggest turds that way. Having long rubber gloves is essential, as is a bottle of bleach-infused cleaner.

I prefer Fantastik.

I think I’m high from the fumes right now.

Because, when you are the only parent present, and you have to boogie two babies out of the poop-tub, you’ll find you HAVE to shut the bathroom door when you clean the tub, otherwise the baby will crawl around you and try to splash their tiny hands in the poop-water and the older toddler, who really should know better by now, will scream “MORE BATH!” on repeat at volume level 10.

What really inspires this post is the fact I went through this exact same scenario just last night. Two happy babies splashing in the bath, a moment where I realize the water looks cloudy, and then the horror of seeing poop particles floating around their happy little baby butts.

And then, tonight, the encore performance.

I even warned L, “No POOPING” tonight.

“No pooping!” she agreed, nodding her little blond head, putting a chubby toddler leg in the water.

I’m pretty sure she’s the culprit, just because H has insanely soft bms and what came out tonight had form, oh and the fact when I yelled, “DID YOU JUST POOP” she said in the happiest, sweetest voice, “I Pooped!”. I may have yelled at her, something I rarely do, and she just looked at me with big innocent eyes, and then went to her little training potty and pooped some more, so, yay?

The moral of this story is this: sometimes bedtime can’t come quick enough, and sometimes a glass of wine needs to be bottomless, and sometimes your best friend is not a person, but a very well-loved bottle of bleach with happy little scrubbing bubble cartoons trying to cheer your night up.

 

fall updates

It’s that time of the year. Another transition, and just like that, summer is over. We had a great summer but I love this time of year. I dropped E off for his first day of second grade, the air is cooler, the mosquitos population markedly less (thank goodness!) and fall really is here.

I have so much stuff going on in September that I’ve had to color code our wall calender, the most Pinterest-ry accomplishment I’ve done in 2017.

In addition to E starting second grade, next week L begins her 2-year-old nursery school program, and I, the old lady of the house, begin school again as well.

That’s right, this 34-year-old mom-of-three is enrolled in the local community college for Chemistry 100! A few years back I started taking a few courses with the goal of getting an accelerated BS in nursing, but after looking over my options, I’ve determined it’s more reasonable to go for the AA in Nursing and then get the BS from there. There are so many requirements for an accelerated program it would take me just as long to have the prereqs for one of the programs as getting a traditional 2-year degree.

So, in addition to training for the half marathon, dropping kids off and picking them up from their various schools, working part-time at the Bucks, oh and doing all those other mommy – and – wifey – things, I’ll be forcing my brain to excel and understand the complicated world of chemistry. I also need to do some serious prepping for the nursing school entrance exam, something called the TEAs Test which covers everything from basic anatomy to algebra.

The season is brimming with chaos and I’m so excited. I love the cool fall days, I love watching football, and even with the air changing I feel that sense of possibility and change that every fall brings on, a feeling I associate with being a child and starting a new school year.

I have a feeling the updates can return to a more frequent, scheduled pace as I’ll have no problem writing a blog post to procrastinate chemistry or TEAs test preparation. So let’s all raise a Pumpkin Spice Latte, strap on those cute fall boots over leggings and toast to a gorgeous and productive fall!