Archive for November, 2017

Hammer Of Approval

November 29, 2017

Its rare that we have an open weekend. A weekend when The Husband has no meeting or travel obligations, a weekend when I’m not working, or the kids don’t have any activity scheduled. But last weekend we were wide open. Its was so nice not having to start a day off rushing around like an overly caffeinated drill sergeant, rounding up kids, packing snack bags, filling water bottles, looking for missing shin guards, swim goggles, a left shoe or a favorite blue sweater, but not the blue sweater I’m standing there holding, a different blue sweater that has a tiny shark on the tag. I swear to you, if a mother doesn’t go bat shit crazy, or drive everybody else bat shit crazy in her efforts to get 2 young kids out the door, on time, any given morning, then she needs to be knighted, sainted and a bronzed statue of her erected in the middle of the village square for all to admire and celebrate.

But last weekend it was such a treat to kick each morning off in a state of complete sanity. Also, it finally gave us the opportunity to check out the Home Depot Saturday morning kids workshops. We’ve been wanting to attend one of these for a while, but Saturday is a peak day for the kids sport and other activities, so its never really worked out, until now. And I have to say, they are amazing. Everything from the set up, to the friendliness and helpfulness of the staff was great. No long winded explanations or list of rules or instructions, everything was simple, brief and all about letting the kids get their hands on the tools and stuck into the project. Keane and Cullen really enjoyed it and were so proud of their finished products. So we walk away giving the Home Depot kids workshops a big hammer of approval.

The boys get to their work station.

They were allowed to use real tools. Not your miniature, plastic versions of the real thing.

Cullen needed a more solid surface than the table could offer to do his hammering.

The painting stage.

A few finishing touches.

Ta-Dah! A Christmas tree photo frame made by their own little hands.

Daddy had some shopping to do while we were there. Still some home improvement projects happening around here. So the store became the boys temporary playground.

My vehicle obsessed youngest, comes face to face with a forklift.

Checking out some exterior doors.

Oh, hello Keane!

Thanksgiving Gobble Jog 2017

November 23, 2017

Another Thanksgiving, another Gobble Jog for the family. This year, cos of all the mileage I’ve been racking up in preparation for my 1/2 marathon a couple of weeks ago, my friend Mike & I (we always run this race together) decided not to run in our usual 5k, but to step it up to the 10k instead. Bonus of doing the 10K? Its starts way earlier than the 5k, so it gives us a little more time once we’re finished, to get ourselves together, meet up with the kids and The Husband and get back to the start line for the family 5k. Yep, Gobble Jog is just an assembly line of runs for me. Thanksgiving dinner is well earned. Also this year I started to realize that the kids are getting much faster, Keane especially. He kept blasting ahead and I had to keep calling him to wait cos I didn’t want to lose him amongst the thousands of other runners. It was starting to frustrate him and I felt bad, but feelings of frustration or a lost child?? I’ll take his frustrated feelings every time. Anyway, its made me realize that we will need to come up with a plan for next year. A plan that allows him to run the race at the pace he wants and as competitive as he’s starting to be. Cullen is still very much in the fun zone when it comes to Gobble Jog, happy just to be running amongst all the people. So I have a feeling its going to be a divide and conquer situation for The Husband and I next year.

Post 10k race Mike and I meet up with The Husband and the kids and start the family 5k. The Husband took off , he was serious about his 5k performance.

Keane, out and running.

Cullen, free as a little bird.

Some fancy backwards running from Keane.

Cullen completely airborne here and looking very much like a triple jumper.

Poor Keane, desperately wanted to just hammer on ahead.

But still had smiles the first few times I called him back.

We’ve reached half-way and the hydration station.

Back in the race and a mini collision between Cullen and another racer, oops.

Positioning ourselves in a more out of the way and safe spot, following the yellow line.

Keane taking a chill break.

Now he’s back.

Cullen’s turn to chill.

The end is near.

A determined finish by Cullen.

An emotional finish for Keane. Why? Cos the race was over and he wanted to run more.

Daddy finished before us, and helps with the consoling.

Out 2017 Gobble Jog Group shot.

Meeting the Gobble Jog turkey helps cheer Keane up.

Also helpful was the collecting of their finishers t-shirts.

Something else that helped cheer Keane up? The Tot-Trot. At the end of all the 10k’s and 5k’s is the the kids race. So we told him we would stick around so he could take part.

Daddy’s pins on his race number.

Tot-trot startline.

I asked Cullen if he wanted to run, but you can tell by his face that he didn’t.

The start of the race was delayed 20 minutes as we waited for the remaining 5k runners to finish. And during that 20 mins he changed his mind.

Getting in position.

Lined up and ready.

So OMG, it was complete chaos once the kids race started. I was on the side watching, cheering, ready to take photos. I spotted Daddy and Cullen, grabbed a quick pic of Cullen’s happy face. Couldn’t see Keane, didn’t help that he was wearing the same t-shirts as a hundred other kids. Then I realized that he had blasted off. Left daddy and Cullen in his dust.

Suddenly I’m a crazy mother running down a bunch of tots, trying to locate and grab a photo of Keane before he gets to the finish (the race was only about 150m). I spotted his hat and was able to grab this photo as I gunned it towards the finish line.

I barely squeaked across ahead of him so I could catch his finish.

It was mayhem, but I managed to catch a glimpse of Daddy and Cullen as they approached the line.

It was definitely one of our busiest Gobble Jogs to date. But at least everyone walked away from the event happy. And that happy went to a whole new level as we were leaving and bumped into the “real” Lightening McQueen.

A very happy and star struck Cullen.

The Maintenace Game

November 20, 2017

There are always things that need to be done around the house. Big things and little things. Things that will take a lot of effort and/or $$, so you avoid them for as long as you can. You avoid them until you can avoid them no more. Yep, that step is definitely broken and that paint is still peeling and those driveway potholes, not fixing themselves like we hoped. So the past month we have finally stepped up our home maintenance game and entered a crazy phase of repair, repainting, and organizing. Its been exhausting, but wow does it feel so much better. And the boys have really enjoyed it. So far their favorite to date has been the cementing of the driveway, cos that project involved not 1 but 7 cement mixer loads of concrete being delivered.

Cullen is truck obsessed, so I knew this was going to be a special day for him as he watched load after load arrive.

He even brought his own cement mixer to the viewing party.

Pure joy!

Several times a day Keane will change his outfit and his looks. And you dare not tell him what to wear. He is the decider and he wasn’t zero input from anyone. All he wants to hear is how great he looks. This was a costume he was considering for Halloween, a pterodactyl, but in the end he decided not to wear it, for Halloween, but he has decided to wear it just casually a few times since. This was one of those casual times.

Me: “Don’t touch the cement Cullen, not until it dries“. Cullen (To himself as he touches it): “Eff you

Always wants to help and be involved, so the builders gave Keane a special job.

Its hard work.

Also important to wash your tools after.

Keane loves to be the one to show and teach Cullen new things.

And then stand over him pointing out everything he’s doing wrong.

Distracting Keane with another job, freed Cullen to work and learn in peace, without interruption.

Everyone loved the tool cleaning job.

Back On Track

November 19, 2017

I’ve been a bad, infrequent blogger lately. But I promise I’ll work on getting back on track. Its just that time of year, so much going on. Here’s a glimpse at one such goings on.

The Finishers

November 15, 2017

And here we are, a Las Vegas half marathon finisher. Yes, I went, I ran and I finished. It wasn’t easy, it was tough, but it definitely wasn’t the nightmare my inexperienced half marathon self was expecting. Running it with one of my oldest besties and a brand new bestie was the difference in making it not only manageable, but fun. I shared in my previous post how challenging training for this half marathon was for me. And prior to running, my line of thinking was, “one and done”. Tick this off your non-existent bucket list and never entertain the idea ever again. As for a marathon? Fu*k no! However, in the days since the race I’ve been pondering the notion of maybe, possibly, could I perhaps be capable of running a marathon. I’m a bit#h for a challenge, especially if its a physical one. There’s a streak in me that just finds it hard to say “no”. But I’m going to let the idea sit for a while. Recover from this past weekend of racing and celebrating and not make any hasty decisions.

Here we are doing the pre-race pics and selfies. Top right corner is my good friend Caitriona and I. Caitriona and I started running together when we were kids. We’re talking 9 yrs old. We were part of the same Athletics (Track) Club, shout out to Newbridge AC, and represented our County of Kildare are every Community Games All Ireland Final from the age of 9 to 16 yrs of age. If your not from Ireland, none of that will make any sense, but just know that its a pretty big deal. She is a huge part of my early days as an athlete. Without her training and competing wouldn’t have been half the fun it was. All these years later, and here we are, still friends and still athletes.

A couple of official photos from the race. 3 very happy and relieved half marathon finishers