Monday, March 28, 2011

3D 5K

I've been trying to expand my personal horizons lately.

Recently, I've felt a little bit "consumed" by being a mom and a wife. Disclosure #1: I love both of those roles, and am completely in love with my children and husband. BUT, I've been restless. I needed something for myself, and I've found this in running. WHAT? I've never been a runner. But I have found immense joy in it. Figuartively, I'm a runner in that I really don't care to committ to much and generally dislike expectations and responsibility. Oh the irony!

Back to running. It gives me the sense of freedom that I've been longing for. 2 weeks ago, I happened upon a brouchure for the CanDo5k. (, and decided to just go for it. 30 bucks later, I was panicking. 3.1 miles wasn't all that intimidating to me, but I was realizing that there would be other people there, experienced people who regularaly participate in these kinds of events. I must have looked just nervous when I picked up my packet the day before the event. The lady said there was a running chip in the bag and not to throw it away. I wanted to throw up. I'm working on being less reclusive and more out-going, but this seemed like to big of step to take all at once. Disclousure #2: The "what have I agreed to?!" feeling overwhelms me in just about every situation. I almost always come out on the other side feeling pumped and excited and proud that I did it, but it's getting to the end where I can appreciate the experience that is difficult for me.

The night before the 5k was Ayslyn's 1st birthday. We had a house-full of friends and kids to celebrate. It was a regular night in every way except that I didn't sleep at all. I would say it was nerves, but I have a regular problem with sleep. When morning came around, I dropped the kids off with Grandma half an hour late. I almost just climbed into bed instead of going for my run. I remembered to shave my legs (thank heavens my mind was working well enough for that!) and climbed into my spandex and got into the car to go to the event (which was right down the hill from where we live. Convenient, and I should have walked, but I didn't have a place to leave my purse and stuff so in the car I went).

Panic engulfed me when I got to the bottom of the hill, where all I had to do was take a left and I'd be there. I was a few minutes early, but the road was blocked off by some not-so-friendly police officers and the 5k'ers were already starting! I parked in an empty lot and jogged across the wet grass to the back of the group, cursing myself for my procrastinating ways. I jogged past the tail and up to the middle of the group.

My personal summary:
Overall place - 229 out of 654
Division place - 7 out of 23
Gender place - 121
Total time - 32:40 (minutes)
Pace - 10:32

Race summary:
Finishers - 654
Females - 421
Males - 233
Average Time - 42:21

My usual panic was magnified by the fact that I was alone. Most people were participating with their spouses/children, a friend, or group. I had no one, which wasn't that bad, I just definitly find courage in numbers. I was inspired by the other participants, and the sense of team spirit. Everyone was so encouraging and the whole event was charged with positive energy. My favorite volunteer was the lady at the half-mile-left mark, I'm not certain whether or not it was because she was so full of energy or because she was at the half-mile-to-go mark. Either way.

It was a great event, and I forgot all about my insecurities and being alone. I never thought I'd be doing this but now, I'm hooked. In fact, I'm going to register for a 10k that's coming up on April 17th.

What is going outside of your personal comfort zone? And how do you deal with it?

Belated Theme Park #5


I didn't quite forget Theme Park yesterday. It honestly flashed in my mind right before my hunky Hubby walked through the front door. All sane thoughts were forgotten as I realized not only was Mustache Man home from work but also the kids were still asleep! Putting two and two together, I followed him around the house until he dutifully sat down so I could accost (read: cuddle) him.

This week for Theme Park, I am pleased to announce that we have an installed garage door. Please note, that having a garage door and having an INSTALLED garage door are two very different scenarios. I am thrilled. The biggest selling point for me is not having to remove/reattach the front wheel on my jogging stroller every time I want to use it. I'd been hoarding said front wheel to deter anybody who might walk/drive by and think "Hey, that's a nice looking jogging stroller. I think I better take it home with me". It also makes the house look a little more finished/complete/normal.

We have also continued our fight agaist the muddy back yard. We managed to do some yard work during a sliver of time when the sun was shining. We have been dilligently aerating (poking holes) the back yard in hopes of helping our lawn come in. This process also includes spreading more grass seed. I am determined to have a full and beautiful lawn this summer, no more mud/dirt for me... er, for my kids.

Sunday, March 20, 2011

Theme Park #4 - A basket of thoughts

1. The other day, a big, fat rat scuttled into the middle of the cul-d-sac, and just sat there. It was so round that I actually wondered, at first, if someones pet chinchilla got out. Then I saw the tail. I immediately hollered for Mustache Man to come and do something. This rat had to go - not only is it vermin and carries diseases, and could potentially bite my kids or dog if left alone, but they breed so quickly! This one rat could help produce hundreds, maybe thousands of other rats. My hubby valiantly went after the rat with a shovel... and while he successfully exterminated the rodent in question, he also broke his shovel handle into 2 pieces. I owe him a new shovel.

2. Our lovely trailer park neighborhood doesn't have sidewalks. I take daily walks with the offspring and pooch, and have taken note that the sidewalks start/end with the nice neighborhoods (aka the 2 story homes). What? Don't us trailer park residents deserve sidewalks too?!

3. My fellow residents here seem to be quite patriotic. I counted 4 American Flags and a Stars-and-Stripes bell/wind chime today.

4. We got our couches yesterday. This has significantly brightened my outlook on in regards to our living room. There is something extremely uncomfortable about going a month and a half without furniture.

Friday, March 18, 2011

Eat my treadmill dust

I've always wanted to be a "runner". I loved the speed when I was growing up, but managed to become one of those not-so-fit kids. I was skinny fat. One marriage and 2 babies later, I'm finally getting "fit". I picked up a lovely book by Dawn Dais "The Nonrunners Marathon Guide For Women" and find it to be not only something I can relate to but its also hilarious. As a back up, I also have "Marathon Training for Dummies". No joke.

I'm not committing to doing a complete marathon (26.2 miles) yet, but I AM committing to doing a half marathon (13.1 miles). Baby steps for me. Other than my marriage and kids, I tend to shy away from commitment/responsibility.

So, I have the books. The other day, Mustache Man got me some serious-runner's clothing - SPANDEX. If my get fit dream wasn't enough, just making sure I use this workout clothing is. My gosh it was spendy stuff! However, horror stories of chafing and sweat got to me, and if I'm going to see this through, I'm going to be as comfortable as possible. As a rule, I avoid anything form fitting and tight (hello, I've had two children, I'm not exactly eager to display the proof if ya know what I mean)... but it feels AMAZING, and what's more is how great I feel. I did 3.34 miles tonight at the gym, something I had thought would be impossible for me, personally. Yes, running on a treadmill is different from pounding the pavement, but it's something. I'm proud of myself.

I'm planning on entering in a Mother's Day run as the first of many stepping stones. It's a 5k, and I'm really looking forward to it. My only disappointment is that Mustache Man will be at work instead of the finish line.

It's 11 pm, and the kids don't appreciate the concept of sleeping in yet, but for your viewing pleasure, tonight's spandex-y outfit.

Monday, March 14, 2011

All this Japanese business

Certainly is a tragedy.

I have family over there, a set of grandparents, an aunt, and 2 cousins close to my age.

I haven't seen them since I was in the 1st grade. My siblings and I had flown over with my mother for a visit during February/March way back when. I can't speak a lick of Japanese (its a life goal to be fluent, but we will see...).

My family came through this "event" ok. I'm so very grateful for their wellbeing and safety.

I guess I look at all this and just feel really detached, and kind of sad that I'm not closer to them. I don't see how I could have built a closer relationship since I can't communicate with them at all, but the regret is there all the same.


Sunday, March 13, 2011

Theme Park #3, Where's my lithium battery?

Since my previous two rants, my bitterness towards our residence seems to have evaporated. It's as if I just don't have the emotional energy/capacity to care anymore. I can't decide if feeling numb in this way is a good or a bad thing, and I wonder if this numbing is spreading to the other parts of my life.

I'm still irritated with living so closely to other people. We were in a town house on base before we moved here, and shared walls with our neighbors, but I felt like we had more privacy there. We have a new neighbor right behind us, and she seems very pleasant so far. Due to the amount of rain we've had lately, we've been inside, a lot. I miss the cold air and frozen ground we had a few weeks ago.

I'm trying to be glass-half-full but I'm consumed by emptiness. I have a lot of really great & happy moments, but they never last and it seems like I'm never happy for long. I have general unhappiness like most people (still haven't won the Mega Millions, and those bills keep finding their way into my mailbox dang it) but no unusual problems. Don't they make a pill for this?

Saturday, March 12, 2011

I'm my own 12 step program

It didn't take long to hear back on the job. I received an email stating that the department was going to be "looking at other candidates to fill the position" (people who are not stay-at-home-mom's, people who interview better, people with college educations, people who are more qualified). I was pretty crushed at first, but to be honest... my interview/oral board sucked. While I had spent about a week preparing, I was still completely unprepared. It was a great experience though, and my interviewers were very kind to me which was the perfect way for me to jump back into the swing of things. Disappointing? Yes, very. But I am feeling very encouraged and I can honestly say that I learned a lot.

The day after I received this email, Mustache Man got a letter from a department he is trying to get hired on at. They've accepted his application (after re-sending forms and explaining a couple tickets) and want him to come do a written and physical test. If he passes, he will move on to oral boards the following week. Talk about a blessing! Sometimes it's very hard for me to accept God's plan and what his will is, but I hope this is it! I'd like to not have to work and continue my education instead, and Mustache Man would prefer to be the bread winner anyways.

Change is a constant part of life, and it's something I am trying to embrace. During Mustache Man's enlistment, I embraced being a tad... reclusive. We stayed home a lot and I kind of lost touch with my social side. I've heard that being a parent can do that to you. There were a lot of other factors as well, but it got to the point where I was actually socially nervous. ME. SOCIALLY NERVOUS?! Something has to change. Jumping into job hunting, and the oral board, helped give me that little bit of confidence that I can, in fact, survive meeting people and being rejected by them. That probably sounds ridiculous but that's where my mind set is. To change this, I'm throwing myself into being a runner. Yes, one of THOSE people. I've always wanted to be a "runner", one of those nimble, fit, healthy looking individuals. I'm also the girl who walked the mile in the 8th and 9th grade for P.E. I've just started training (man, I feel lame saying "training") and have picked out a couple events to compete in. I've found a couple 5K's, a 10 mile, and a half marathon I'd like to do this year. My family went running yesterday - Mustache Man, bless his heart, hates running but humors me anyways - and we managed to do 2+ miles. Not bad for people who haven't run in a few weeks and used a double jogging stroller that we had to pull back on because our dog wanted to full out gallop. I'm calling today "Day 2" of training. If I don't just do it, then I never will. I told Mustache Man about the "10 mile" last night, and he raised his eyebrows at me and called me "ambitious". Hah! I'll show him. He has faith in me, but other than being a wife and mother, I don't tend to like commitment very much. Also, as part of busting through my little reclusive habit, I plan on volunteering somewhere. This might get a little trickier, just because it already feels like we have no time to spare, but it's something that I really want to do. I want to make a difference with my time, and want to enjoy the experience as well. My thoughts are animal rescue/juvenile related. Does anyone have any volunteering ideas/opportunities?

Wednesday, March 9, 2011

Glee-fully yours

Both my children are currently napping (or quiet and in their respective rooms, at least). I can't believe it. Its like we have been non-stop running and never catch a break other than our 5-6 hours of sleep a night. Sure, I wish that we got a full 8 hours, but I loving working towards our future and bettering our life.

Right now, I'm waiting to hear back on that interview I had on Monday. My interviewer said to expect a letter within 2 weeks. It makes me excited/nervous, giddy/scared and just downright impatient. I want this job so badly. Quite frankly, I think I sucked at the interview and couldn't blame either of the officers if they just ripped up my eval. packet as soon as I walked out the door. Mustache Man says I'm being too hard on myself and that I did great (from the things I told him), but the point is, I had a higher expectation for myself and failed. Oh well, now I wait. I can't help but think that this is the job God has for me. I sure hope so.

Mustache Man and I take the ACT's in less than a month (for the first time ever)! We get our couches in a week and a half, and also have Pixie's 1st birthday to plan.

On top of scheduled craziness, yesterday we had quite the scare. I was getting lunch ready and was watching Pixie from the weird bar thing on the counter. I looked down for a split second, and next thing I know she is screaming because she got a plastic coat hanger (about the thickness of a penci!) hooked in her mouth and under her tongue. I seriously thought that she punctured the soft membrane under her tongue. It took a bit of work and twisting to get the hanger out of her mouth, and of course she was scared and not exactly cooperating. In the end, everything is ok. The nurse said that because the mouth heals so quickly she wouldn't need stitches and just to watch for infection. We still don't know if its a puncture (babies, soooo cooperative) but it seems to just be a nasty scratch. I seemed to be the only person seriously concerned. Mustache Man was, but he is always the epitomy of "cool". It's ridiculous... makes me look high strung.

Finally, after way too much waiting, I can now proudly say that I am a revolver-packin' mama. I finally got my S&W .38 SPL +P, complete with pink handgrips. Tomorrow we will be going to get my concealed pistol permit. Oh yeah. Pictures to come later, for some reason they didn't want to load...

A little funny I saw today, hope you get a chuckle out of it! --> Women are angels until someone clips their wings, then they just fly around on broomsticks - they're flexible like that.

Sunday, March 6, 2011

Theme Park #2, Chronicles of Trailer Park Living

It'll be interesting to see how long we end up being in this house.

Everyday is still a love/hate relationship here. I love what how much we pay for rent, and Mustache Man and I have finished decorating our bedroom. We went with a zen type of idea, and its completely relaxing. We tell the kids that its a "whine free zone", and miraculously they lose the attitude while in our room. I pretty much hate everything else about this house. It's always cold, the floor is always freezing. It has old, metal frame windows that actually cause a draft in the house. We had to buy curtains just keep the house a little warmer. We've been testing the temperature with a couple thermometers, and its 15-20 degrees colder by the windows than it is in the middle of the living room. I can't imagine how much money we will be throwing away on heating this place. Mustache Man has valiantly been trying to do everything he can to make me happy here, bless him. When he gets home from work, he starts on the "honey do" list and has been working his butt off trying to make this place as homey as possible for me. Last night he hung up my blueberry dishes in the dining room.

Together we've been tackling the yard. The whole yard needs work - there is a retaining wall in the backyard, so it does give us something to start with, but its one big mud pit. We're working at seeding and trying to get more grass in, I'd really like to actually have a lawn (no matter how tiny) and have a place for the kids to play. We're focusing right now on the side of the house - there was a ton of wasted space! It had been really neglected. The bushes and plants had been forgotten and had overgrown so much that everything was rotting. There was a make-shift retaining wall that we ripped out and are now cutting the dirt back to create a parking pad. It will be nice to have a decent place for Mustache Man to park his truck, as it is, parking our two vehicles in the driveway and tying to open the doors wide enough to stuff the kids in doesn't work very well.

My week's big frustration? Our landlord situation. Lord knows I love my in-laws, they are fantastic people. My frustration most likely stems from my own personal issues but I'm stressed all the same. I just plain hate feeling obligated to people. Even more than that, I hate it when someone tries to micromanage me. My sister in law is on the house with her parents, all 3 are co-owners but everyone refers to it as "her" house because she lived here previous to our family moving in. Well, she skipped out early (was supposed to live here for a certain amount of years due to a credit that she got when she bought the house) to go play house with her fiance in a different state. For one, I feel like we're helping to clean up her "mess" by renting the place (we are getting a killer deal on rent,so we do benefit a little). I mean, owning a house is a big deal. It's a very adult thing and with that comes increased responsibility. I don't think its very cool to just ditch said responsibility just because its not what you want anymore. That's not grown up, its down right immature and ridiculous. Consequences are a part of life, and growing up means making difficult decisions that aren't always what we want (like maybe staying in the house you chose to buy and seeing your obligation through). It's not like I enjoy living in this shack! But it is the best possible option for my family at this moment, so I'm gritting my teeth and dealing with it.

So, sister in law... she is a few states away and is virtually nothing but a name on this house as far as we are concerned. She doesn't come to do any work on the place and as far as I know, she isn't paying anything to the mortgage. I could be wrong, but its not my business to know. I just view my husband's parents as our active landlords, we pay them the rent and pretty much don't have any reason to contact Mustache Man's sister about the house. Yet, it appears we need to "clear" things with her. My mother in law as said that she would like to sell the house as soon as we move out, so chances are my sister in law might never see this place again (she won't be visiting until early Fall, and we plan on ditching this heap as soon as we are able to). The term investment house gets thrown around every now and then, but facts are facts. Manufactured houses don't retain value, period. This thing has drastically lost value since it was made in the 1980's. They pretty much just paid for the land its sitting on. In my humble, non-home-owner opinion, an investment is something you put money/work into to have gain later. Of course, I live here so things annoy me more than someone who owns it but does not deal with the issues as a tenant... BUT MY GOSH. PUT DECENT WINDOWS IN THIS THING. INSULATE IT. Not only will it be more energy efficient, and make your currently disgruntled tenant (me) happier (warmer), but you will be adding to the value of the house, and making it a better buy than the other old and outdated houses for sale here in the trailer park.

This concludes Theme Park #2. Thanks for ranting along with me. Tune in next week.

Saturday, March 5, 2011

A Hunting We Will Go

Job hunting that is, we don't yet have 2011's hunting regs, though I think they should be out by now.

On Wednesday, I went to Bellevue for a job test. It was with a private dispatching company that contracts out to different agencies in the area. Long story short, my time spent testing there was brief. I pretty much failed it. The test was listening to layered recordings of colors and numbers/phonetic alphabet in sets of 3, and writing down exactly what we heard.

It was difficult, half of us didn't pass.

I'm a little disappointed that I didn't do better, but am actually relieved that I didn't even need to consider accepting a job offer from them. Mustache Man had asked around at work (about 3 or 4 people had worked for this same company before) and they said that it was an extremely demanding (read: soul sucking) job and not to even go for the test. The salary was very tempting, but I know myself. Even if the pay is good and I get benefits, I wouldn't be able to work a job that I don't like. I don't have that kind of drive, especially if it means working a job I hate instead of staying at home with my kids.

My next interview is on Monday. This one I am feeling very excited for - butterflies-in-my-stomach excited. Which in turn makes me feel very nervous. That excited/nervous feeling is reassuring to me - I know that I want the job, and even more than that, I can see myself working in this field 5 years from now.

So, even though I'm married and a mom and all, this is kind of making me feel like a grown up. I mean, lets face it, anyone can get married (Brittney Spears), and anyone can reproduce (all the teen mom stuff, I don't watch or keep up on it, but I do pass by the tabloids in the grocery store), but I feel like my "real" life is just beginning, and I love it! I also just registered for the ACT test. I debated taking the SAT's, but I ended up deciding against it. As soon as I've taken that, I kick back and wait for an admissions letter to WASHINGTON STATE UNIVERSITY (online).

My kids are great, my hubby is the love of my life, and God is good. Have a great Saturday, everyone!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011


Yesterday was a fantastic and terrible day. The Offspring were SUPER whiny. I think we were all just getting some cabin fever, so my mom came over and we went to our lovely Mall (after California, I have such a huge appreciation for Alderwood). I was also starting to feel discouraged about the my job hunt. I know I haven't been applying for that long, but I'm not the most patient person, and we need more income! That's the terrible part.

The FANTASTIC part of yesterday is that I was contacted by the two employers I'd like to work for the most. Both of them are well paying full time positions, which makes me nervous and excited. I test for one tomorrow afternoon, and interview with the other on Monday. I am so excited.

However, I'm nervous too. If I get hired, Lord knows what kind of shift I will be working, and chances are we will have to find a nanny. Or a really awesome daycare. Both thoughts make me nervous. My kids' happiness and well being is my main concern, and I refuse to leave them just anywhere with anyone.

On to happier thoughts for now - the title of this post, LOIN FRUIT.

I was mentioning something to my mom about Zach-attack and Ayslyn. I was droning for effect and said "my children, my offspring, the fruit of my loins" and no sooner than I said "fruit of my loins" was I picturing in my mind someone pointing at my kids and calling them loin fruit. It made me giggle.

I've probably got only a few seconds to down the rest of my coffee before Zach is up for the day.

Here we go again!