October 29, 2014

Lana turned 2 last Tuesday, and of course I’m late getting this post up. But there’s no way I could let a celebration of this amazing little creature go unmentioned.


I’m sure Della’s 2-year post was filled with measurements and words she was saying and activities she was doing, but Lana just can’t be described like that. Yes, I do have the stats from her 2-year checkup, but everything else about this kid is just felt.


She’s my little buddy when Della’s at school in the mornings, and I don’t think I could have picked a funnier partner. Her catch phrase of “Help me, Mama?” rings through the house when she’s trying to get her Lego towers apart or get a shoe on or get her beloved Strawberry Shortcake pieces back in their bag or zip a jacket or you name it.

She is the craziest little kid I’ve ever known. Last week the girls rented The Princess and the Frog from the library (my new favorite Disney movie, by the way), and Lana totally dug the music with its bayou flair. She was bopping around playing her air guitar throughout the whole movie, and at one point I looked over to find her standing on her head in a tripod position, bouncing her knees up and down to the music. Literally dancing on her head.


She gallops and hops around the house like a wild child, and one of her newest moves is putting on her jellies and instantly getting happy feet. Her little feet start flying around so fast she’s a blur. She also does what I call interpretive dance. She slowly spins while waving her arms around her head. You just can’t help but watch and laugh.


She has the sweetest little heart, and is always giving hugs and kisses and is very quick with a “Sorry!” when needed. Usually. Her independent play is wonderful, and she loves to narrate as she goes. She’s constantly either chatting away or singing some version of something while she plays, and she loves to work away in their play kitchen, brewing up countless concoctions that she always brings to you for tasting.


Her little snaggle teeth give her the most adorable lisp, and her communication skills are pretty amazing. She talks in all phrases now, sometimes even throwing in what’s pretty close to a full sentence. I got a little princess scooter second-hand from one of our neighbors, and she loves gliding along on it, stretching out her hind leg in the cutest balance pose ever. And everywhere she goes she must run.


Now for the stats:

  • Height: 35.75″ (93%)
  • Weight:  27.6 lbs. (61%)
  • Head:  48.7 cm (69%)

She wears size 2T clothes, about size 6-7 shoe, size 6 Seventh Generation diapers (size 5 in most other brands), and size 6 overnight diapers. Potty training is nonexistent right now, but I’m not going to push it until she actually shows some interest. She’s really good at singing her ABCs, she can count to 10, and we’re working on learning her colors and shapes.


What else can I say, besides this little girl is simply incredible. A shining personality would be an understatement for this one. My sweet baby girl is 2 years old! Happy birthday, Lana Marie! We love you SO very much!






Blessed, with worries

October 15, 2014

Notice I didn’t title this “Blessed with worries.” Because I’m not just one big ball of worries all the time. That wouldn’t be a blessing. That sounds downright miserable. However, I do have worries, even though I feel like my life is very blessed.



I have the most incredible opportunity to stay home with our children right now. Of course it didn’t happen how I ever expected it to, but it has been the greatest blessing imaginable.

I have a beautiful family, 2 members of which just so happen to be the most amazing, wonderful little girls I know.

We are healthy.

We have a good roof over our heads and food on our table. That roof is located in one of the best parts of the state, so we’re doubly blessed.

We are lucky enough to live a pretty comfortable life on really 1 income right now.



My perfect, dream job income stream from earlier this year is gone, and I have no idea how I’m going to replace it for next year.

Everything I saved up from said job is also gone, thankfully paying some of our biggest bills for the year, but it’s still done. Fortunately we have a solid chunk in savings, but burning through that because I don’t have any readily available cash flow is the last thing I want to do. We’re going to have to use some of it for a little while, but hopefully that will end much sooner than later.

I don’t want to have to go back to full-time work already.

We have a couple looming house projects that will be major. How we are going to finance them is my main concern.


So I guess my real question is, who has the winning lottery numbers for me?




The races are over!

September 27, 2014

Last Saturday was my final race of this running season, the Brewers Mini-Marathon and 10k. Thank heavens I chose correctly for once and did the 10k, because there’s no way I could have done another half marathon.

It started and ended at Miller Park, and the course was surprisingly much harder than I anticipated. Since when does Milwaukee, and specifically the Miller Valley, have hills? There were spots where I honestly thought I was going to have to walk or just give up the race all together.

But I pushed on, just slowing down when I felt the urge to stop. I refused to look at either the mile marker signs or my watch, because I didn’t want to know how much misery I had left. Somewhere in the last mile I actually grabbed a cup at the water station to rinse out my mouth, and of course it was Gatorade, not water. Talk about a terrible surprise! I about choked on it, which only added to the full-body pain I was feeling by that time.

I have no idea why that run was so hard, either. 6.2 miles is not a long distance for me anymore, especially after the 12-mile training runs I had to do earlier this spring. I don’t know if it’s the additional 4 miles I walk daily taking Della to and from school now or what. But from somewhere in the very first mile until the end, every single step was a nightmare.

The only time my spirits lifted was when we ran around the warning track inside the stadium. There were 2 reasons for this – I saw friends cheering for me who I had no idea were going to be in there (in all fairness they were there cheering for someone else, but they rooted me on as i ran by. still felt good to hear my name, though), and I knew those ending flags were almost in sight.

After practically limping across the finish line, I finally checked my watch. And I about fainted.

From shock, not pain.

49:33! (my official time ended up being 49:32)

I absolutely could not believe it. I had kind of a tiered goal time going into this race – I definitely wanted to break 54:00, which would be roughly 9:00/mile pace; I really, really wanted to break 52:00; and in my deepest heart of hearts I would be ecstatic to break 50:00.

So to see 49-anything as my finishing time just blew me away. I killed it.

I was so happy! And I was done! And I needed to get some water immediately before I died! And I needed to keep walking so my distressed legs didn’t completely cramp up on me and render me a giant heap in the finishers’ chute! And I needed to get to the beer tent!

I ran this race with a group of friends, and that part was so much fun. Actually having others to watch for, cheer on, and meet up with was a blast. All the racers got a couple free Miller Lites afterwards, and I said that beer has never tasted so good.

Thankfully I was smart enough to bring a full change of clothes this time, so I was able to enjoy my beverages relatively sweat free. The forecast that morning had called for rain and thunderstorms, so I was anticipating being totally drenched with water, not just sweat. Either way, the spare clothes I had in my gear bag added to my post-race glee.

So, my friends, my D&L stroller training team paid off in spades this summer. I was beyond thrilled with all 3 of my race times, and all for varying distances, too, which was a first for me – a 23:00 5k, a 1:57 half marathon, and a 49:00 10k. Success!

Now I can just kick back and run for pure enjoyment and exercise. I took this whole week off from running, and it felt wonderful. Like I said, I walk so much now to school and back twice, I almost feel like that’s enough. But I should definitely get a little more pavement pounding in before the frigid air traps me inside this winter. At least I can just stick to my preferred 5k route now, not worrying about getting any specific distances in.

And here is what it looks like to happily close out a very productive running season:






An answer, but still questions

September 8, 2014

I’ve finally figured out what’s been making me so ill at ease about this whole school thing with Della. It’s not the school or the teachers or the kids or their parents or the logistics or any of that. It’s 100% me. For pretty much as long as I can remember, I’ve always felt different […]

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The blink of an eye

Thumbnail image for The blink of an eye September 3, 2014

That’s seemingly how long it took us to get here… Della started K4 on Tuesday, and I still can’t believe it’s really happened. Each year as the girls age, I say it doesn’t seem as if time has completely flown by to get to that point. I feel like it really has been just over […]

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Early onset empty nest syndrome

Thumbnail image for Early onset empty nest syndrome August 7, 2014

Della starts school in just a couple weeks, and I won’t lie – I think it’s giving me major anxiety. Yes, it’s only K4, and yes, it will only be 3 hours a day in the mornings, but still. I don’t want her to be gone! It’s so strange picturing my days here without her. […]

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Thumbnail image for Four! August 1, 2014

Della turns 4 years old today. 4!! I just went back and read my post from her birthday last year, and I can honestly say not a ton has changed. She is still as wonderful, smart, funny, caring, and conscientious as always. Just throw in the additions of Frozen as her new favorite everything, a […]

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