Mesa-Phoenix Half Marathon (with the fam)

The race turned out to be a lot of fun, but they always are, really!  This was my third year running the Phoenix Marathon (half) and Ben's fifth!  It was also the fourth year my family has come out and joined us so I think it's pretty safe to say it's tradition, possibly having replaced SLC Marathon.

I was pretty excited for this one because it was my first postpartum half marathon, and since I didn't run during my pregnancy, it has been over a year since I've run one!

Our Top 5 Baby Must Haves

#1 A swing!!  MUST!!  My boys have loved the swing and it is #2 to mom's arms.  Dash is particularly a fan of being in mom's arms 24/7 and sometimes the only way I can keep him content and get something done is by putting him in the swing, high power, with the music turned up and the mobile above him spinning.  My cousin has a Mamaroo and she said she doesn't like it because it doesn't have enough motion now that baby is more than a few weeks old, which I think is a helpful point when trying to decide on some sort of swing/rocker.  We have a Fisher Price swing and used it clear until Bentz could walk, and we'll probably do the same with Dash.  Hopefully it doesn't die first before, from all the mileage.  :P

#2 Owlet monitor:  I didn't have this with Bentz but it has been soooo nice with Dash.  I have had one red alarm in the 5+ months and it was the second day home, and it alarmed low oxygen (below 80).  I hope it was false (oxygen should be 95+ but it could dip a little occasionally in deep sleep), but I was able to wake baby boy up and make sure all was okay.  The nice thing is, if the monitor is having a hard time getting a reading, it'll alert you with a different color and will play a nursery rhyme instead of the red alarm noise so you don't freak out.  Overall it has allowed me to not be so stressed at night and be able to look over and see the green docking station and know all is well.  One more thing, when baby boy had croup, I could monitor his oxygen and make sure he was still okay despite the wheezy breathing, because the app allows you to monitor the oxygen and heart rate.

#3 Diaper changing station:  I didn't use this much with Bentz because his room was around the corner from the family room, but in our new house the boys' rooms are upstairs, so we have this changing station downstairs.  Ours has diapers, wipes, a changing pad, and a little drawer for stuff like diaper rash cream, vaseline, etc.  We've used it like 10x a day and unless you'll be changing all diapers in the nursery, this is so nice.

#4 Boppy:  I used a smaller Boppy-like pillow for the first little while, and finally bought a real Boppy and it was a lot nicer, bigger, easier to nurse with, and I wish I would've bought it from day one when I was trying to get the latch down and one wrong angle = pain.  I gave the old one to Bentz so now we both have Boppys.  :D

#5 Velcro swaddles:  These are the best!  We use the Summer Infant Swaddlemes and then we transitioned to the Summer Infant Swaddleme wrap sack which is bigger/looser and allows you to wrap with arms in or out, so you can start with one arm out to slowly adjust to not being swaddled.

Other things we have used this time:  Rock 'n' Play (auto rocks and vibrates), jumper, walker, Bumbo, and I think that's mostly it.  As a working mom, I need alllll the devices, although I'll be the first to admit that baby boy naps in my arms a few times a day still and I LOVE IT.

I did one of these three years ago and my list back then was a lot different, plus I was exclusively bottle feeding (blech!!).  Dash won't take a binky (insert major sad face here) and I refuse to pull out the electric pump because I'm still sick of it after three years.  One thing I have learned with baby #2 is they are all so individualistic and there is no real predicting what you're going to need, but it's nice to try to be prepared.  Or like that commercial, prepared-ish.  Just keep the receipts.

Week 16 & 17: freaking croup then a fabulous week

The highs and lows of marathon training, there are ever so many, it's what makes it so interesting. ;)

So week 16 was supposed to be my peak week for Phoenix 1/2, I was supposed to run 5x for somewhere 25 miles with a 10 mile long run. But baby B2 came down with croup the week before (SAD), then B3 caught it (SAD ^2), and mid week I started feeling the throat thing. I was determined to run through it all, but I tried for a run and decided I was being silly and I quit after a mile. I kept getting worse until Sunday, so I missed three runs total. Drrr.

Then Ben caught it and missed a couple runs too. We were a mess. lol But we're doing much better and week 17 was good!

A sick baby Dash liked to fall asleep with me in view, so I carried the swing up to the treadmill and he liked that.  :)

Back to the doctor for this little guy.  Everyone in the waiting room was hacking up a lung just like my boys.  I am so glad they have a sick side and a well side at the pediatrician's office and at least try to keep the germs separated.

My throat hurts.  Fudge.

The good news is after missing so many runs I was extra jazzed to get back to it and despite the evening juggle of dinner/family/run time, I was motivated to make it work without too much stress or guilt.  :)

First time I ran with both boys and no Ben to watch them.  Thank you tv and millions of toys, you save me sometimes.  And the SWING.  WE COULD NOT SURVIVE WITHOUT THE SWING.

My longest run for this upcoming 1/2 was 9 miles since I missed my peak long run.  Um I am absolutely terrified of this 1/2.  hahaha  It's going to hurt like crazy, and it's going to be so slow.  :P  But, alas, it will be fun too.  Maybe.  :P

Ben is further along in training than I am so he already ran 13 miles a couple of weeks ago.  I think he is planning to run somewhere a 1:35 at this race.

Stretching with dada.  Bentz is obsessed with dada.

My family is coming into town for this race.  I think my dad and Dallin are running the 10k, my sister, brother, Matt, Ben, and I are running the 1/2.  And grandma Hales will hold down the fort with the babies.  She'd rather do that (I can't say I blame her, they're freaking CUTE).

And now 10 weeks to go until 26.2.  Gotta get my mileage up asap.

Have a great week!  Supposed to be a cold one, and maybe stormy.  Fun when you live in the south!

Gingerbread Houses

This is the last Christmas post I think.  I've mentioned that my family all pools our photos into one Google Photos album online so whenever we do stuff together I have a lot of pictures!  Then I sorted them all out into different Google Photos albums, and narrowed the pictures down drastically from there.  Then I usually Photoshop all my pictures to brighten them up for my blog, but I have learned that if I wait to have time to Photoshop, nothing gets posted, so with our new Pixel 2 bomb diggity phone cameras, I have gone ahead and posted photos straight from my phone, no Photoshopping.

Because you all cared about that.  hahaha

Mini Bunk Beds -- a DIY

We decided that 2018 would be the year we get our bed back.  The problem is, when we tried moving Bentz to his new room last summer, we missed him a lot more than we realized we would, and he felt SO far away, so we began brainstorming ways to keep him by us but not in BETWEEN us.  Or kicking us.  In the head.  :P

Ben is a handy man and likes to have projects around the house, so this one served multiple purposes.  He also took a day off work to help me begin the potty training, so he had an extra day around here.

Ben's brother is just like him, so he came over and helped out too.  May I add that Ben ran 13 miles before working on this all day?

What color do you want it?  Ummm blue!

Tadah!  Mini bunkbeds.  They fit a crib mattress which is more than a foot longer than Bentz is if he's stretched out, so it should work for a little while.  The glorious part is it is much smaller than a twin bed and fits in our room a lot easier, although we do now need to rearrange a few things.

We couldn't find crib mattress bunks anywhere, they were all twin.

Next?  A barn door.  And Ben wants to make it out of zebra wood which is really cool! 

We're also going to paint our kitchen cabinets white.  I use the term "we" very loosely here, but it will be a DIY.  We were quoted like over 3k for it to be painted and Ben was like...UH UH.

Week 14 & 15 - An unplanned step back week + snowbirds!!

The other day I got a text from my dad with a picture of a house one mile from mine.  "Hey we are thinking of a second home in Phoenix, any thoughts on this one?" 


mean jokes, dad.

really mean jokes."  

Three days later they were here, signing on a lot in a new neighborhood, and the house will break ground within the month.  So that was NUTS.  Hoorah rah!

But lo and behold, unexpectedly I got to run with my dad!  And he is going to have a house 15 minutes from here come August/September.  AND it has a casita where my youngest brother and Emily will live in, to keep watch when my dad and Laura aren't here.  Fancy how it all came together.

Lots of treadmill miles these days, however the sunset is nearing the time of day where I will be able to squeeze in a shorter run outside instead.

Yay for Arizona socks.

Little guy just munching on my leg while I stretch.

I track my mileage way too many ways:  1-Daily Mile, 2-Training Peaks, 3-Garmin Connect, 4-Strava, 5-1000 mile challenge, and 6-this framed poster where I write it in (below).  My watch actually uploads to Training Peaks, Garmin Connect, Strava and the 1000 mile challenge automatically. 

My beef with Strava is how do you run and interact with the community with any sort of privacy?  I only friend people I know, I don't let the map show location within a certain mileage from my home which is usually where I always run, so then I can never be a part of the Strava competitions, and my run distances it posts are always off, sometime a TON.  So for now all my Strava miles are hidden unless I remember to make a run public to my friends list.  I like the concept, but I am also a paranoid runner.

^^Baby boy is sick and likes to watch his mama run.  the sound of the 'mill and fans puts him to sleep.  :)

This week 15 was less than stellar.  I originally had a record postpartum mileage planned (maybe 22 miles) but then I missed one run, and I have had a tight knee, so my coach mid week downgraded my split long run from 5+9 to 3+5 and we treated the week as a step back.  That ended up being perfect because baby Dash came down with CROUP on Wednesday and the little sleep we were getting became no more, and he has needed his mama even more.  Poor guy!!

He sneezed as I selfied.  Croup is sad sad sad...and scary too.  I took him in on day one and his lungs were clear and they gave him a steroid shot.  Thankfully the Owlet monitor allows me to monitor his oxygen at nighttime so I can immediately know if Croup is developing into anything, which hopefully will not happen.  It's sooo sad!!

The run I missed was my first intervals run!  This upcoming week I have five days of running, maybe to peak for the 1/2 marathon that is way too close for comfort, 3 weeks away.  But it'll be fun to have my family back in town.

Have a fabulous week.  Don't freaking get sick!!

Summing up January!

I may not have it together these day, but ONE thing I have managed to do every day since 2018 hit, is during my last feeding of the day, I put together a quick collage of things that made me happy from that day, which 98% of the time is pictures of my family!  I am learning that being happy is a choice and I want to focus on those happy things in my life instead of waste away worrying about the opposite.

I use an app called PhotoGrid.

So I had 0 intentions of sharing these, but it is a timeline of the growing boys, so I changed my mind [thus you get to see many photos of a haggard yours truly].