Tuesday, July 29, 2014

One Year!

Baby E is one year old today. In many ways I can't believe it has been a year already, and in others, the time seems to have gone so slowly. All I know is that I don't really remember what life was before this little girl was a part of it.

I know the first year is full of changes, but it is amazing that in a year she can go from a little lump to a walking, talking little girl. Each day her personality comes out more and more. I love that smiles and giggles are common.

How do you go from this....

To this in just a year?

Baby E is doing great. I don't have her exact stats, but I know she is about 22 pounds and tall enough that she can no longer play under the table without bumping her head. Unfortunately, she doesn't always remember this, but she is learning.

Baby E is starting to climb and trying to run. She loves being outside even if it is just in the front yard. While it is not quite as often as when she was a tiny one, Baby E still likes to snuggle and be held. It is not uncommon for her to walk up to me with her arms out and squeaking, which is her way of asking to be held.

Her birthday was filled with lots of Mommy and Daddy snuggles, some time at an indoor playground (rain meant no swimming), a dinner of her favorites (eggs, beans and blueberries) and a giant strawberry cupcake.

What is with the singing...give me that cupcake.
A year later I am in a different place than I thought I would be. To say it has been a growing year would be an understatement. There are still days when I still struggle with Baby E's birth, but it is a lot better than it was. I am regaining some confidence in myself. The one thing that I am happy to say is that I am still nursing Baby E, but no longer really pumping. (I will have a whole post on this shortly.) I don't know when she will wean, but at this point I am not in a hurry. 

Love this little one.
I know the first year is full of some of the most dramatic changes you see in a child's life, and there have been many moments where I have been blown away. I am excited to see what her second year brings.

Monday, July 21, 2014

Race Recep - Suck it Up Buttercup 5k

A few months ago a coworker of mine was looking at ways to get in shape for his 40th birthday. A couple of us convinced him that participating in his first 5k would be a great motivator and he said if I could find one, he would do it. It felt like it was meant to be when I found a race the weekend before his birthday in the part of town where he lives. Little did we realize that the Suck it Up Buttercup 5k would live up to its name.

Race morning my alarm went off at 4:15 a.m. I got up and got myself together and packed up. This was the first race in months that we were all running, so a little before 5 a.m. I got Baby E out of her crib. The goal was to get her changed and into her car seat without really waking her up so she would sleep in the car on the way to the race. Yeah, that really didn't work. She woke up and didn't fall back asleep until about 10 minutes before we got there.

We all piled in the car and were pulling out of the driveway at about 5:15 a.m. This is the first time in a long time that I wasn't running late for a race. It was a nice feeling. The drive went smoothly and we got to the race site a little before 6 a.m. I let Baby E sleep for a few more minutes, then woke her up so she could nurse before we started. This was as much for me as it was for her.

After a quick stop at the port-o-pottys, we found my coworkers and lined up toward the end of the starting line. I had the stroller, so I wanted to give myself plenty of room. The organizers pushed the start by about 5 minutes, and at about 6:35 the national anthem was played and we were off.

The first two miles went well. It was hilly, but not too bad. I knew the course was not flat and I would have the stroller, so my goal for the race was to keep my pace under 13 minute miles. At the two mile marker, I was just under this pace and super excited. That excitement didn't last long, because the next mile was a killer. There were several really steep hills and pushing the stroller down the hills was worse than pushing it up. For this mile I felt like we were back in Virginia because the course was much more Virginia hills than Florida hills. 

This picture doesn't do the hills justice
I was super excited when I saw the corner to turn down for the finish. At that point I was hot, tired and ready to be done. I was also glad that I didn't sign up for the 10k this year. 
At the finish line

My final time was 41:24 or a 13:21 per mile pace. Which means that I took forever to cover the last mile. Oh well, I'll be better prepared for the hills next time.
What was so hard about that?

Post-race group photo
This was my first race with Final Mile and I have to say I was really impressed. Yeah, the course was hard, but that is not a bad thing. The event was well organized and marked, you had access to your photos, and the race shirt was a gender specific tech shirt. 

Seven months of racing down and now it is time to start gearing up for the fall and winter racing season. I am happy I decided against doing a full marathon this year, and excited to try and kick some butt in the half.

Thursday, July 10, 2014

11 Months with Baby E

This should probably be 11.5 months with Baby E, but better late than never. I think this month has been the fastest one yet. It seems like just yesterday we were celebrating 10 months and now 11 months has come and gone.

We are quickly moving from babyhood into toddlerhood. Baby E is quickly learning that walking means there are so many new places to explore. She has also now figured out how the kitchen cabinets work and that there are fun things in there to find. This development caused us to get our butts in gear and put locks on the cabinets as well as some other baby proofing things.

But why can't I play with the trash can?
It seems like she is always talking and more and more things have meaning. She will say hi and daddy is da. Ma is both milk and me. I think that she is a little confused because we are still nursing, so in most cases milk comes from mommy.

So happy

Baby E remains a great eater. She will eat just about anything that you give her. Cottage cheese is one of the few things she doesn't seem to like. Rice is hit or miss, but she eats everything else without any fuss. Eggs and zucchini are still very high on her list and she hasn't met a bean she doesn't like. 

This month was relatively quiet for a change, so we enjoyed some time just hanging out as a family. We spent time at the pool and celebrated her 11 month birthday with a trip to the splash pad.

Birthday party planning is in full swing. I may be going a bit overboard (damn you pinterest), but she is only going to be one once. I wish being crafty came more easily for me. 

I have to say that for me, each month seems to get more fun. I can't wait to see what the next few months have in store.