Monday, July 27, 2015

favorite from a session...

smile on little tiny lips...

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Friday, July 24, 2015

D+C vs miscarriage at home...


I'm not writing to tell you what to do.  For one, it depends on a lot of different factors and everyone has different physical and emotional needs.  For two, I'm not your doctor or midwife, so I can't tell you with any authority what you need in your case.  This is just a run down on the comparison of the two (without graphic details) from my recent experience.

Why I originally chose to just let things play out at home:

-I don't like being put under as it makes me feel out of control
-I don't like surgery ... because again it makes me feel out of control
-The thought of delivering at home didn't make me feel emotionally freaked out and seemed natural
-I was not in a rush to conceive another child
-We use a health savings account along with insurance and I thought it seemed financially a better choice as long as it was safe and I stayed in contact with my OB/GYN
-I was not currently anemic or ill so the natural rigors of miscarriage seemed doable
-I didn't want my cervix manually dilated (of course because it felt out of my control ;) or my uterus scarred or damaged (very rare)
-I don't really like hospitals or drama and just wanted to be home during an event like a miscarriage

What would have made me more apt to consider a D+C (surgical removal of the pregnancy)

-If I had been ill or anemic
-If my OB/GYN had been completely apposed to a natural miscarriage for some reason
-If I was at risk for an infection for some reason
-If I had a history of hemorrhage
-If I wanted to conceive again as fast as possible

In my case, not everything went wrong with my natural miscarriage...but just about.  How I didn't get an infection while training in pools for 8 weeks and swimming in open water seems to be a testament to the resilience of the human immune system (or a small miracle).  But, I'm not sure I would change how I chose to do things even in retrospect.  When deciding to do things at home naturally, you may risk a lot of blood loss.  That seems to be a common risk across the board from talking to other women who have been through it.  You will also need to be very sensitive to the signs of infection and too much bleeding in case there is retained tissue from the pregnancy.  One thing I may have done differently, would have been to call into the OB office faster and let them know my "at home" pregnancy tests were still very faintly positive.  I hadn't done that because they kept getting lighter and lighter and were sensitive tests, so I had planned on it taking several weeks or even months to be completely negative (when blood work was done, I still tested at about 3 weeks pregnant from retained tissue before the D+C, so very low).  Had I called in, they probably would have done blood work to check my hormone levels and then followed that up with an ultrasound to make sure the miscarriage was complete if they weren't dropping fast enough or low enough.  As it was, I just talked with the nurse over the phone and since I had no symptoms to indicate an incomplete miscarriage, I didn't go in for follow up blood work.  When my first cycle after the miscarriage involved heavy bleeding I could have been concerned, but first cycles after a miscarriage are often characteristically heavy or longer than normal to clear out any tissue that needs to be flushed out, so I didn't really worry much since the heavy bleeding was in episodes not continual.  I also partly blamed it on the fact that I taxed my body quite a lot with the training and racing the triathlon and felt like I had it coming from possible overexertion. :)

Well...it all hit the fan when we got away for two days with Caleb and Laura.  Poor Laura seems to always be playing nurse for me when I'm at my worst. :)  We enjoyed our first day in French Lick IN and on day two, the boys went golfing and Laura and I went on a 2 hour horse back ride in the morning.  apparently that's the way to freak a uterus out...going up and down hills bouncing around on a frisky horse.  I started bleeding heavy again and was concerned but thought it was because...again...I had over done it on the horseback ride and just needed to lay down and let my body chill out and heal.  Laura went to get some filtered water and I called my OB office to give them and update on my current condition.  The nurse gave me the run down on when I needed to head to the ER and told me to take another pregnancy test but a normal sensitivity one from a drug store and follow up in the office the following day when we got home.  Laura got back with the water and iron supplements...I was seemingly okay and settled in bed....so she turned around for a return trip to the drug store to get me a pregnancy test per my convo with the nurse.  She asked if I wanted to ride with her in case I felt sick... I didn't really want to get out of bed and said I would keep my phone on me "I promise" ;)


The picture Laura sent Luke out on the golf course...of me passed out, with my shirt sloppily edited to cover midriff (and see..I have my phone right there by me...you know...in case I needed help) 
From around 3p to 4p it was really bad.  When Laura got back with the rest of the drug store purchases, I was laying on the floor by the bathroom feeling very light headed.  I didn't feel like I passed out as I remember laying down on my own (and putting my arms up like that because i could breath easier), but Laura said I wasn't making sense when I talked and mumbled so she quickly got me water (shoved a straw in my mouth ;) and called the front desk for EMS to the room.  I remember seeing a bunch of feet at my eye level.  Like ten people piled in with black shoes on and navy pants and I think two fire fighters as well...some guy asking me questions..."have you eaten recently..." oxygen saturation was good but my heart rate was elevated and I couldn't stand without getting dizzy.  EMS said I needed at least two bags of fluid.  I got very emotional and kept saying I didn't need an ambulance transport.  I supposedly kept saying "I think it stopped, if I don't bleed anymore I'll be fine". No one in the room looked too convinced.   Luke (and Caleb) arrived back from the golf course in a flurry (due to the picture of me laying on the floor looking dead).  Luke picked me up and stuck me in a wheel chair after I signed a paper refusing ambulance transport and we headed straight to the hospital with me still repeating "I think it stopped".  We arrived at Paoli hospital (yes, the smallest hospital in the world) and when they found out that Luke was an emergency doc, they all seemed a bit on edge.  Luke had only said he worked for IU when they asked if he had a job and about insurance at check in, so they must have looked it up or something came up on our records.  He sat in the corner and let them do their thing since it wasn't his department, which I respected.  I know at times he probably wanted to shove people out of the way and just try to fix me as nurse practitioners came in to do exams and IV lines failed to go in on the first try.

At this point, I felt like I was in labor only with very little pain and more dizziness/weakness...which actually...I kind of was in minor labor without realizing it.  I was dilated to 4 cm and was shaky
(every picture of me in the hospital during labor looks strikingly just like this-the "I need lip balm and space stare")
After getting blood work back and having an exam, a D+C was recommended.  Luke said that I possibly could have been handled by extraction without being put under (opinion being stated without doing the exam himself and hearing what the NP (and another doctor later) said while doing it)...but my hemoglobin was at an 8 and no one seemed willing to do anything that would cause me to start bleeding again.  I was sort of stable so...why mess with a good thing before the OB doctor and other staff on call got there?  They kept pounding the fluids and got the docs on call headed our way to start the surgery.  I asked Luke to call my OB in Indy, but after missing a call back in all the commotion, he made the decision that moving me with hemoglobin levels reading low and with active bleeding, wasn't worth the risk of being at a bigger hospital.  Being wheeled through the doors into surgery (without Luke) got me to a mental place of letting go and letting God work through all of these people around me.  I really need to learn how to let good people help me when it's needed.  I'm not so great at it.  As I was being put under, I was surprisingly calm after praying that I would let go of control in this moment.  The anasthesiologist  said "okay I'm going to give you the good stuff" and I, feeling jolly, lifted my free arm and fist and said "yea...I didn't come to French Lick for nothing!"  The D&C may have been one of the easiest the OB has ever performed as I was already dilated and ready to go.  He told Luke that everything locked down just right as soon as the extraction was done.  I asked for genetic testing to be done if possible, but the odds are very very low that we will get information back at this point.  It was worth a shot. :)  I'm feeling good if not fatigued two days later.  It will take another week to feel like myself and then probably several months to build up my iron levels again.  But I'm on the mend. The human body is pretty fragile and amazing all at the same time. 

So...should you get a D+C or go all natural... I can't give you that answer. :)  But I wish you all the best and hope you never have to make that decision...or have to do both.

Soon to follow...lovely pictures of our stay in French Lick that will make it seem like none of this even happened. ;) ;)  Also as a side note...Luke and Caleb got vouchers to redo their round of golf and the hotel comped our room the second night.  The customer service was quite outstanding. :)
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Sunday, July 19, 2015

And Gisella is Two...

This is the first year we have a side by side picture on her birthday :D  Fun...although...I've been thinking...whose bright idea was it to have pictures of us every year as I chase down 40 and Gi is hitting her darling teens.  :P  I really should have thought through this better. ;) ;)

Thoughts on comparison...she looks older, her chin is more defined...(Ann holds back sob)

over all she just looks like more of a stinker- and that friends- is what she is.

I give a big hand to Luke for taking this picture again on her bday...it took three tries and a cookie, but we got the Gi's head in the same spot mostly.  :D

2015

 2014


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Monday, July 13, 2015

Coping with a miscarriage... finishing a 70.3 half ironman


It's been a learning curve the last few months.  It wasn't really a hard decision getting pregnant again with our 7th child.  We had our concerns since we would need a bigger vehicle and our house seems to be shrinking but Luke and I opened our hearts to a new little one with relative ease.  I had some nervousness about telling society we were having yet another baby.  I knew the news would be baffling to some since we already had our baby girl.  I can't tell you how many times I've been asked "So are you done" in a tone that sounds like I'm finally finishing a prison sentence.  I don't really mind the question so much as I just don't really see it that way.  I love love love this stage of being a woman.  I don't want it to go away, I'm not wanting my kids to grow up too quickly and if I could freeze time along the way here and there I would.  So the thought of being "done" doesn't make me feel free... it seems like an inevitable thing that will happen but I don't pine for that end or plan for it with excitement.  Feeling peaceful about having another baby made the miscarriage more... confusing.  I wasn't mad at God when I miscarried, but I did try to find the meaning in it all.  In the end, I feel like I am a more rounded mother now...because I've grieved the loss of a little one and sadly, that is part of being a women for many.  It's part of the fabric of this broken universe and I'm not bitter that I had to walk it.  Sad-yes, confused-sure, hormonal-definitely, bitter-thankfully no.

One thing I was really missing was being able to show my little one love.  I have faith that I will be able to see what the baby looks like some day and I'll know that baby's true name...but I didn't get to love and nurture the baby earth side.  I didn't want to see the baby when I miscarried, which later made me feel guilty...like I rejected the child in some way.  but in my more sane moments, I know I was just scared and a bit in shock.  I also know that it made no difference to my little one and it's really all a head game for me to work through.  I still wanted to show my lost child in some way how much I loved him/her though and so I decided to run the Muncie 70.3 again.  The year I signed up for it 3 years ago it had been shortened because of crazy extreme heat that day, so it seemed like unfinished business.  It seemed like something I could focus on.  It seemed like therapy to cross a hard won finish line.

I knew I couldn't get ready in 8 weeks by myself, 16 weeks (or more) would be more typical for a race that long so I called my cousin Brant who is a triathlon coach and told him I needed to train for something to cope with my loss.  He was all encouragement and support.  Everything I needed, but he must have wondered if I was going to be able to pull it off in such a short time.  I set my gaol to finish before the cut off (8 hours depending on waves) and got to it.  I had a lot of bleeding from the miscarriage (to the point of passing out cold at one point) so I started taking a liquid iron supplement and tried to eat really well and kept taking my vitamins.  I was feeling really well during training.  Brant started me off slow and built up the distance little by little each week so it seems quite doable.

If you don't want to read about blood loss...skip the next paragraph and my apologies in advance :)


Race weekend was fast approaching and I was getting excited.  I even started to think I should set some ambitious time goals for additional motivation - but then.... I started bleeding again.  Not "Oh, my body is getting back to normal yay" bleeding...like "what is my body trying to do to me, I'm going to die" bleeding.  Obviously my uterine lining was not back to normal after the miscarriage because I had major clotting issues which led to free flowing bleeding Thursday.  Then again on the way out to get my race packet, everything broke loose again and I had to stop at a Cluvers to use the bathroom.  Only, I didn't make it in before I became indecent for public exposure.  I was literally standing in a stream of my own blood in the parking lot with my jeans completely soaked through and down my leg.  I kicked off my sandals in shock trying to figure out what to do.  I knew I needed to massage my abdomen like they do in the hospital after you have a baby...but it didn't stop the bleeding.  I draped a blanket across the door that I had in the truck and using some clean shop clothes of Luke's and some black yoga pants, I finally was able to tie a shirt around my waist and slip inside without looking like I was dying to get things under control in the bathroom.  I thought about posting a picture of my pants for you that Luke took (he's an EM doc...so he reflexively takes pictures like that) but you may have a bad dream or something so I'll spare you.  Luke estimates I lost at least a pint and a half of blood if not two from Thursday through Saturday when the race was.  A human has a pint of blood for every 10-15 lbs of body mass approximately...you can donate a pint of blood and go about your business...but running a race right after may not be the best idea.  I didn't change my race plans though and no one seemed willing to tell me to (not that I was really telling too many people how much blood loss I was experiencing).   I grew more and more determined as the memories of the miscarriage seems all the more real and relived.  I had a heart rate monitor and planned to heavily rely on it to race safely and avoid a black out.  But basically my muscles where all built up and primed to go...but now I was running on less juice.

My first cousin Brant... aka Coach

gathering all the gear the day before...

The night before the race, our babysitter we've had for years came with me to spend the night at a rather seedy hotel that still had a room when I tried to find one late in the game.  I later regretted booking it after reading a review about a guest getting bed bug bites, but they wouldn't allow a cancelation on the race weekend bookings.  So I checked the mattress from top to bottom and it looked new.  So we decided a "how bad can it be" attitude would get us through the night and started to settle in (which included bringing my road bike into the room and setting up a blender... :).  Later when I tried to hook up the phone jack behind the bed for a 4:30 am wake up call, I found a bug on the wall.  A bed bug...on the wall.  We left to stay at the friend's house where Luke was with all the kids in a hurry (30 minute drive).  On a positive note, I got my money back for the reservation. ;)  I was on a couch trying to sleep by 12:30...but laid there awake until about 3am worrying about surviving the race.  I was mentally plotting survival strategies involving water bottle wash downs and port-o-let stations along the bike and run routes...I couldn't sleep.  I dozed for an hour before getting up at 4am to make a shake and head to the race site.  I felt awake, I felt like I was okay to race... but knew I was running on adernaline.  It was becoming more and more of a mountain to climb...I grew more and more determined to finish.  I stuffed an ultrasound picture into my race jersey pocket and mentally pictured taking it out once I got to the finish and got into the truck to head to the reservoir.

 This is after the race...but it's kind of the face I made when I saw the bed bug too so...
It's dark when you arrive at the race site that early.  Usually the excitement of all the other racers kind of oozes into the air and makes it feel like it's day.  follow directions and people waving flashlights to park...check your gear in the bags and air up the the bike tires to 120.  Start walking to the transition area.  I was doing everything in steps...like someone telling me what to do from outside of my own head and I would just follow along.  I talked through the possible stress triggers with a girl that had never been open water swimming before...calming her down helped calm me down in a sense.  Then we were in the water...I had trouble regulating my breathing for ten minutes when it normally takes a bout five minutes to chill out and just swim.  I was pretty high strung at the start and didn't trust my physical state...which you mentally have to trust yourself in open water or it's just too scary.  The water is murky and if you imagine passing out and sinking...it's just too much and your heart rate spikes.  I started thinking about all the regrets I had related to the miscarriage-let my mind muse and wonder...things that I could control, things I couldn't and let them go one at a time.  I imagined them sinking... I'm going to try to leave them in that reservoir.

swim time: my watch split said 42 minutes, official time said: 46:34
swim distance 1.2 miles

I had trained on the bike up to 40 miles and the bike course is 56 miles.  So I paced myself and tried not to burn out my legs saving some for the run.  At around mile 40, my bike chain dropped off the ring while shifting...this has never happened to me before during a race or training and I've never put the chain back on myself.  I didn't do the best job of it...I tried to get it back on without flipping the bike over, got it jammed...got it unstuck and took a deep breath-remembered to turn the crank shaft backward instead of forward from some youtube movie I watched on greasing a chain...got it back on but was leery of changing to the big ring for the rest of the bike course.  All my gatorade had dumped out of my tank when I flipped the bike.  I decided my bottle with plain water was enough for the last part of the bike leg.  Only...I dropped it when I tried to take a drink and I had already passed up the aid station bottles of gatorade because I felt kind of queazy and just wanted water and salt stick tablets.  Now I had nothing for about 50 minutes.  I got a little nervous when my vision seemed like things were brighter.  I didn't know if it was just getting more sunny or if I wasn't seeing normally.  I'm still not sure because there was a lot of cloud cover early on.  I saw everyone along the side of the road when I came in on the bike finish, Scott, Gigi, Luke, the kiddos and our babysitter and close friend Rebekah...they had planted folding chairs out along the road and were cheering for me.  I got really chocked up and emotional.  Got to love those hormones...

bike time: 3:47:10
bike distance 56 miles

The only thing that worked for the run-Honey packets...
At transition I had some strong abdominal cramping (maybe due to dehydration-who knows) and I stopped in at one of the port-o-let things.  I feel bad for whoever used it after me because I was still bleeding some (less than before but still too much).  I stole some gatorade from someone's bike since they didn't need it anymore then sat down to put on my running shoes and was quite sad to discover that I didn't want to stand back up once they were on.  I told myself to just watch my heart rate monitor and to run just one mile.  If nothing else...just one mile.  If I needed to ride back in an aide vehicle ...fine....if I passed out...fine...if I needed an IV...whatever...just run one mile.  So I got up...stretched my legs and started to run.  I'm not sure if I could have finished without my honey packets.  I ate about a tablespoon packet of honey every 20-30 minutes.  I ran the first two miles, dumping water on my head and walking the aide stations kept my heart rate in check.  After mile 6 though my heart rate wouldn't go down even if I walked for a stretches.  I basically crawled along until mile nine or ten thinking I wouldn't make the cut off anyway.  Then I saw a girl that had been in my start wave and she said we had an hour left before the cut off... I could see the mile 10 marker ahead...I started to think I could make the cut off...I caught up to Robert who was running with two pacers to get him to the finish before his earlier cut off.  He had a kicking cancer jersey on...I determined to stick with him if it killed me.  And we ran together.  I told him about our baby we lost...he told me about kicking brain cancer.  We made it to the last hill before the finish line and I ran ahead to give Noah a high five, Scott was pointing to the turn off...pointing to the finish...and so I yelled "I want it!!!!" and pulled the picture of our baby out of my jersey and ran.  I saw Brant's smile and felt bad it had taken so long for me to finish...but I didn't die...that's a testament to his coaching. :)  Brant finished the race fast enough for both of us anyway...I think he finished 6th or something crazy fast like that.  After getting a hug and picture with Robert the brain cancer survivor x2 and making sure he made his cut off time (he did by minutes) I tried to eat something but couldn't.  The endorphin rush of finishing only lasted so long and then I had to sit down.  My stomach couldn't handle anything.  I fell asleep on the way back to the house and got a big dent in my arm from my bike helmet box.  Comfy.  I ate some melon.  My throat hurt when I took deep breaths.  I slept on the coach with the kids jumping all over the place.  I still couldn't eat anything when I woke up but was able to get stuff together to head home.  Rebekah drove, I ate some potato chips and dozed.  By 11:30 pm I was ready to go to sleep but suddenly was ravenously hungry.  Luke made a run to Stake and shake to get me a cheeseburger and chocolate shake...the two food items that I desired most in the world. :)

run time: 3:11:39
run distance: 13 miles

Rob telling me he was proud of me and that "it will be different next time"...so so sweet... :)  Rob says not to say "hope" it will be...just say "it will be" and leave it at that. :)  When you survive brain cancer twice...you can say whatever you want pretty much and it sounds like a great motivational speech. ;)  
I got the ultrasound picture over the finish line picture :D  I didn't die or pass out smile! :D
Rob's finished the race face... he asked if it was okay to do his "face" for the picture ;) haha  People are great...I love people like him.
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Tuesday, July 7, 2015

5 minute friday...

Not friday but...I don't ever do these on friday anymore it seems like.  may as well be consistent. :)  I'm going to write 5 minutes on a passage of scripture I read this morning instead of a word to change things up for my brain.  In don't know who goes to the trouble of reading these, but I love the exercise of free writing and think it warrants the effort. :)



Matthew 16:5-12New International Version (NIV)

The Yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees

When they went across the lake, the disciples forgot to take bread. “Be careful,” Jesus said to them. “Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”
They discussed this among themselves and said, “It is because we didn’t bring any bread.”
Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, “You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? Do you still not understand? Don’t you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11 How is it you don’t understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 12 Then they understood that he was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.

time stamp: 2:30
If you ever thought in your mind..."well if I were God I would...."  Jesus did that as a human.  He showed us what it would be like for a God to be stuck inside a human form for 30 some years.  Sounds crazy...sounds out there... maybe not if you've been taught that you're whole life but it is pretty astonishing if you consider it in new light.  So we have this God-man and he says something about bread, well yeast actually.  The disciples get all in a dither about bread and basic needs and disappointing Jesus because they hadn't thought about this basic detail of something to eat for the journey and now they are stuck in a boat with no food.  And Jesus says hold up!  You think I'm asking you to take care of my basic needs...like you don't imagine I can just make bread like I've done before?  How do we forget so fast?  Why to we always think on the most primitive basic level?  Well, because we are human and that's what we do without the Spirit's help but this story hit me in light of current events lately.  God says he's got things under control...we are not to fret around about little things like "bread" and our basic comfort whether that is emotional or physical.  We don't have to take on the responsibilities we were never created to fix.  Jesus was talking about the "Teaching" of the pharisees/Sadducees not the bread they were making with yeast or not.  The kind of influence that made people stress the rules only and not the true unadulterated love for God that fills a person.  It's anything that turns us away from God that is the "beware" message.  So try the spirits, be prayerful, don't be hateful and quick to fill your mind with stress and unrest.  Focus in hard and deep on the deeper message...what is it saying?  Is it saying there is a just God worthy of our worship He is due...or is it saying the opposite.  It will always say one or the other.  And the one that brings no glory to God may not look they way you were expecting....it may be a long fake prayer in front of a crowd... a boasting tongue talking about the good the persons done... it's a messy job trying the spirits.  But if you claim to follow Christ, it is not an option.  You will miss too many chances to love and pass judgement falsely too often if lazy in the practice.  So... lets not sit in a boat worrying about getting bread when it's impossible and when the source of everything is so near.  try the spirits and then love in it's true form.  It may mean reaching out in healing like Christ did, it may mean a harsh sounding word in certain situations if the person is asking for accountability.  Love takes many forms depending on the need.
time: 2:42 (hmmm....nothing like making the 5 min rule pointless.)
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Thursday, June 25, 2015

The shake etc...

This shake is keeping me up and going these days and I simply had to share.  It's not all I'm eating of course...goodness no, but it's a nice recovery shake or morning shake to be sure.

Before I even post the ingredients, I'm certain I have to say that eating raw or undercooked eggs can kill you dead or at least make you feel sick so I don't get sued or something.  I live on the dangerous side I guess because I use raw eggs in tiramisu and in this shake with very little worry.  They are from our back yard though, so that may be why I'm confident the eggs are not covered in bad bacteria because our hens seem healthy enough.  If very concerned about the raw factor but you want the easily absorbed proteins from uncooked eggs, just pasteurize a dozen eggs in water at the beginning of the week to have on hand (easy instructions).

What I put in a blender for a single shake:

One frozen banana (keep them in the freezer to have when I want a shake)
approx 1/4 cocoa powder but I don't measure it
one scoop of RAW protein powder (I'll use other brands as well, but like it if I can use a non-milk based one to vary my diet a bit-I also avoid ones with fake sugar-yuck)
A splash of olive oil or low flavor/orange cod liver oil (approx 1/8 cup)
a handful of ice cubes (approx 5 small sized ones)
Approx 2 cups of whole raw milk (of course normal milk or milk of any kind is fine...like coconut or almond milk)
Annnnnnnnnnd one raw egg (two if they are very small)

Note: powder won't stick to the side of the blender as much if dumped in from top while the blender is running so it pulls it down through the center of the shake instead of to the sides.

This shake is great pre-workout if you give it 20-30 minutes to settle (optimally).  Also good to end a workout with it to recover and not be overly sore.  I know this shake (or any good protein shake really) is a big deal because if I don't make one after long workout, I'm wondering around the kitchen hourly trying to figure out what I'm supposed to eat but nothing sounds good.  I also don't sleep as well if I do a workout late and don't drink this down.  Don't skip out on adding the oil so that it's lighter... and don't look up how many grams of fat are in the oil, your brain and nervous system are made of fat so don't starve yourself just eating carbs.  Not that carbs aren't great...I love carbs. ;)  
 This has been another workout essential that is worth the investment so far (Mio brand).  I've done several runs after riding my bike and this heart rate monitor helps me stay in the right training zones so I don't over do it or drop off into almost walking because I'm feeling drained and not thinking about my workout.  Even after I'm done with the event I'm training for, I'll continue to use this for workouts; I've been so surprised at how differently my body responds to running based on the day.  Depending on how hot it is out, how hydrated I am or what I ate or even my hormones- my heart rate shows it.  It's really good information to have so I don't get annoyed with myself for not going faster etc.  Sometimes you've got to give yourself a break. :)

And I've said it before but will mention it again, there is no way I could be running after biking etc if I was heel striking without paying for it.  So far my knees are fine and my feet are dandy (if you have problems with toe nails falling off from running, your shoes are doing you no favors...get fitted for better shoes that don't let your toes hit the front no matter what your stride is)...but I'm telling you, you'll tear yourself up without running lighter and sending less shock up your knees/legs.  Maybe I'm more sensitive to it because I'm loosely jointed and can't afford to bang my knees and hips around. :)  Here's a really cool diagram :D heeehee Sometimes just upping your tempo to 180 foot strikes a minute can fix the stride because it forces you to pull in your gate to under your center of gravity.  I get annoyed at ads in athletic magazines that have athletes with enormously spread out strikes that look crazy cool but that's not really realistic for long distance.  That would be running away from a bear stride... or apparently selling a pair of expensive shorts stride ;)

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Wednesday, June 17, 2015

life in pictures :)

Finishing up my training as a Classical Conversations Challenge A tutor (picture from practicum- camp demo experiment).  Challenge A is the age group that starts at age 12;  I'm so excited about it.  I need to learn a lot more Latin before September but the challenge (pun not intended) is a good thing. 
 My new book stash... I love new books and school supplies. :)
 Christian excited about some mini golf clubs Luke got :)
 date niiiiiiight

 picked strawberries this year.  I've wanted to the last few years and just didn't ever catch it before they were gone.
 Then what do you do with them all if you don't have pectin on hand to make jam...???
 Make jam with gelatin instead of pectin I suppose. ;)  I used sugar instead of honey (I would have used a lot of honey for how much I was making) but only a cup instead of like four cups the pectin recipe says to use. I tried the vanilla in some of it but prefer it without.  It had a musty taste mixed with the lemon juice brightness.  It's still really sweet with less sugar and I'm keeping it in the freezer so the setting of the gelatin is totally enough for our uses for it- mostly on toast. :)
 That's all the sugar for 14 cups + of berries :)
 It set fine. :)
Noah had a birthday and is now 12.  We spent a family day at the water park.  This broken water sprayer amused kids about as much as the water slides. :D


I've never played this but we have a little game shop by our house and it's what they guy recommended based on the games our family likes.  It's been really fun.  Happy birthday to you Noah  darling.  Heads up if you play this...it's very easy to cheat if you are sly.  We had a big fall out after one of the games and a dig through the discard pile to find some foul play.  For shame, some lessons on ethics were in order after that. 
 cake...
 The boys have been "eating" nectar out of day lillys and showing Gi how to do it. :)
 Park morning with our CC school group
 She liked to just hang like this...I'm sure the boys taught her this method of swinging. :)
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