Friday, February 5, 2016

Race Recap - Lady Track Shack 5k

Last weekend I ran one of my favorite races...the Lady Track Shack 5k. This is my 4th year running it and it is always an inspiring race. This year I got to run it with my mom and that made it even more special.

Saturday morning my alarm child went off at about 5 a.m. Since there was no getting her back to sleep and my alarm was going to go off anyway, we all got up. By 6:20 a.m., after a snack and debate with E about eating yogurt before we left the house, we were out the door and on our way. The race started at 7:30 a.m. so I figured we had plenty of time. It only takes about 20 minutes to get from the house to the race location and in past years parking and traffic hadn't been an issue.

We didn't have an issue this year, until approaching the Princeton exit on I-4 where traffic was backed up for a bit. Slowly but surely, we made our way to the parking garage. Time was ticking away, but we still had a good buffer, that was until we go to the top of the deck and there weren't any spots left. Luckily my husband was driving, so he dropped us off. Mom and I headed to the race and he went to look for parking.

After sitting for 20 min
We got to the start line and made our way toward the back of the pack. I am slow and Mom was walking, so I didn't want to be too far front. There was enough time for  a quick selfie and a little complaining about the cold and we were off.

So many people

The first mile was good, but really really crowded. In hindsight, I may have started a little too far back because I had to weave through a number of people. While the course was busy, the scenery was really pretty.

There were a number of views like this in the first mile

I felt good most of the first mile and held a decent pace. Mile 2 wove us thought some fun neighborhoods and included some fun views of downtown Orlando.

Still crowded
The course was still pretty packed at this point. This was surprising, because normally the crowds thin out as you get further into the race. At about 2.5 miles, the course took us onto a running path and across a bridge. Then we headed into the finish in Lock Haven Park. My husband and E were waiting for me because E wanted to finish with me. It turned out that she really wanted me to pick her up and run...that didn't last very long, so we ran to the finish together.

Can I run here everyday?

E grabbed some strawberries and a banana and we waited to see mom finish. She was no too far behind me. We hung out and grabbed some juice until it was time for the kids races. E was really excited to run and did a great job.

She was ready to run!
My time for this race was 40:04 (12:53/mile). Not great, but I haven't been training to gain speed, so I can't really expect much. It was, as always, a fun race to run.

The best thing was seeing E at the finish line and showing her that being active is fun.     

Wednesday, February 3, 2016

Adventures in Parenting - Disney Cruise Part 2

When I left off, we were on a boat. Amazingly, we are still on the boat (funny how that works on a cruise). But now it was Star Wars Day at Sea. Star Wars Day was a mixed bag for us.

I like Star wars, but I am not the biggest fan. We booked this cruise because of the timing and the rest of the itinerary, not the Star Wars part. What I didn't expect was that there wouldn't be many non-Star Wars activities during the day. E doesn't get Star Wars and was too young for the secured kids activities and that meant E spent a lot of the day at the splash pad.

So many times on the slide

I snuck away during nap time to go to a liquor and chocolate tasting with my mom and sister. This was a lot of fun and it was interesting to see how flavors changed when you mixed the chocolate and the liquor.

The highlight of the day was dinner at Remy. I had been looking forward to this dinner since we booked the trip. We dropped E off at the nursery and enjoyed the sunset and a drink. 

Yay! Adult time!

Then it was time for dinner...all 9 courses of it. They started off with a themed cocktail and it just got better from there. We both had the traditionally French menu. The food was amazing and the service impeccable. My husband was making fun of me because every time I tried to take a picture, someone would be at the table to serve us. It was worth the up charge, but not something I would do every cruise.

After dinner it was time for the Star Wars party and fireworks. Thankfully the weather was good and we were able to enjoy the party and fireworks. E enjoyed dancing with the other kids, and kept asking for a "light saver." The fireworks were Star Wars themed and they did a good job. Few things are more fun than fireworks at sea.


The next day was a low key day at sea. We spent most of the day recovering from the late night. (Which really means fighting with a tired toddler.) The weather was cold and rainy, so that wasn't the best for cruising. We did get some adult time while E was in the nursery and finished the day with Inside Out in the theater. Overall it was a nice and relaxing day.

The last day was Castaway Cay another day at sea. Yeah, we got up and could see the island. We headed down to the Castaway Cay 5k check-in area and picked up our numbers. Then the captain came on to say that the winds were high and they were having trouble docking at the island and they would try again in a half hour. After killing a little more time and another attempt at docking was unsuccessful, it was clear we weren't going to make it to the island. (I ran the 5k after we were back on land because I didn't want to wait to do it on the ship's track.)

We headed to breakfast and to take some character photos. The staff scrambled to reschedule the day. We were trying to get E some lunch before a character dance party when she climbed on my lap and fell asleep at the table. She was really tired at this point. Unfortunately, there was no character dance party for her, but we made it up with a (cold) trip to the splash pad. At this point we were caught in a cold front coming off the coast of Florida.

That evening there was a character send off and complementary drinks in the lobby. 

We stayed for some dancing after dinner. E got a picture with her favorite singer too.

E was a huge fan
Then it was off to the room. E went to sleep and we finished packing. Unfortunately, E was sick that night, so no one really slept well, but at least it was the last day.

The next morning it was up and off the boat. Vacation was over. (Now I just need to figure out when we can go back. Spoiler....sometime after E is 3.)

Saturday, January 30, 2016

2.5 Years with (Not so Baby) E

It has been a while since I did an E update. As she gets older, it seem like the changes from month to month are less, but then all of a sudden I look at her and she seems to be so much older. I am not sure where the time goes, but some days I just want it to stop. (Other days, not so much, but more on that later.)

When did my baby get so big?
Right now we are at a fun age. She mimics just about everything that we do and wants to help with everything. She loves helping Daddy make coffee and Mommy cook. (It may take us twice as long when she "helps," but it is pretty fun.) 

My mind is constantly blown by all of the words she knows and uses. I still can't believe the things that she comes up with. While enjoying some Mickey shaped fruit snacks on the cruise, E picked one up, looked at it and said, "this is Mickey. He's my boy." I cracked up laughing. We have full blown conversations and I love listening to her, even when she is talking just to keep herself awake.

E loves running, jumping and climbing. She still loves being outside. Cooking in her kitchen and watching movies are some other favorite activities. She is a big fan of Mickey, Minnie and the Disney Princesses. Cinderella is a favorite. We are over her fear of characters and less than 24 hours after getting off the Disney Cruise Ship she was asking to go to Disney World. (We made her wait a week.)

Riding one of her favorites

My princess

She is full of sass and the girliest tomboy I know. She will fearlessly climb and jump off of just about anything, all while wearing a dress. My heels are another one of her favorite things to play with.

Who cares about modesty?
I have my heels and my keys
We are right in the midst of the toddler-teenager phase. It is not uncommon for E to turn into a puddle and role around on the floor if we are doing something she doesn't want to do. Brushing hair, changing diapers, getting dressed in appropriate clothes and putting shoes on are all common causes of an E puddle. The hardest thing is that she is getting stronger and it can be hard to hold her when she is tantruming.

Taken just minutes before the first photo.
 Potty training is in the works. We need to step up our game a bit, but I was in no hurry until after we got back from vacation. Going to bed, and staying asleep, are some of the biggest challenges. We took away her pacifier at the beginning of the year and that created a whole new bedtime. (More on that in another post.) 
While we have our share of tantrums, I couldn't ask for a more loving and compassionate toddler. She still likes to snuggle and hug. (On her terms of course.) If she sees me sad, she will tell me it will be okay. Her teachers also tell me she helps other kids in the class if they are crying. 

Time Flies (Thanks Timehop for the reminders)
Happy 2.5 to my not-so-baby E!