Permanent Cosmetics (eyebrows + eyeliner)

I had my eyebrows and eyeliner tattooed over the Christmas break!!!!  I was so excited.  This was actually my third time getting it done in the past 15 years, but the last time was in 2009 (when I lived in Utah) so my eyebrows had literally faded to nothing that I knew the change would be night and day.  And it was!

(I literally am the most hairless human on the planet.  That is why I have no eyebrows!  And I also have a giant scar through my left one.)
So I got them tattooed, not microbladed.  Microblading is the trend these days, but it is soooo expensive for results that on some people disappear in months.  It's crazy to me that you can be out $500!!  It's similar to a tattoo but you use a hand tool and the ink doesn't go in as deep.

Since I was going up to Utah for Christmas, it worked out.  My tattoo lady is in Riverdale and she's the best!!  She doesn't give you cosmetics that fade horrifically, and she does a brush technique to appear more natural than a solid tattoo.

The immediate after, however, is a bit freaky.  lol  Solid, black brows and a swollen everything.
And I had to wear my glasses for a few days and I even missed a run so I wouldn't sweat and get them infected.  (I was totally going to run anyways until my dad was like... "I probably would not run yet.")
They scab/peel and look pretty horrific for almost 10 days, a lonnnnng time, but once they healed ...WORTH IT!
Now I have to decide if I want to thicken them at all for my touch up this summer.  I know thick is in, but I also have tiny features (MINUS MY EYES lol) so that is TBD!!

Here is Judy's info!:

A Night at the Nutcracker

The Christmas season was busy and flew by, but I still wanted to post a few pictures from our Nutcracker night!  My mom was in town so she was able to come and it was a lot of fun!!  

So Long Farewell JANUARY

January was a good month despite being...well...January!  

We had some freezing weather, little Dash caught strep and an ear infection, Dash read his favorite dinosaur book 74358032750825 times and we had to replace it despite it being a Christmas gift, Bentz had so much fun with his new Christmas gifts, I finally found some mental strength and set a 7 minute 1/2 marathon PR (which I beat in February again!), Ben and I put in for the NYC lottery but officially will be going with a tour group this year!, we traded Chef'd/Blue Apron for a meal delivery service that delivers fresh ALREADY COOKED meals which has been the most amazing thing, Ben and I probably ran 300+ miles combined, and Dash and I were able to play hooky and get away on some stroller runs!

Project Make the Happy Life (Collage-A-Day)

I ordered my book for my collage-a-day project I did last year.  I posted most of the collages here (until I got behind at the end of the year), but basically this "project" started when I was spending lots of time nursing little Dash, thus I had time to spare while just sitting.  I started putting together a collage of pictures from the day, because I take a LOT of pictures.  :P

Then I printed them all out in a book!  365 pages of goodness.
I looked everywhere for the best place to print such a large book without spending a fortune, and ended up using Chatbooks.  After a discount code I found searching Instagram (never buy from Chatbooks without a code!) it was just under $82.  Which was a fraction of the price of others, really.

This year I am doing it again!  And I don't use a computer to make these collages.  I use the free app called PHOTOGRID which lets me save them at 2560x2560 pixels.

The project name came about because I was trying to find the good in each of our days and focus on that, because there really is a lot to be happy about.
Even when life gets busy, this is a fast way to document it all.

The Sickness Saga PT II

Poor little Dashy boy sure has had a rough fall/winter.  I talked about his ear infections and garbage here:

A couple weeks after the strep diagnoses (which we got under control with the meds, thankfully!) he caught a little cold /aftermath of strep and he started waking up a lot at night. 

That's the #1 sign oooooooof, you guessed it, ear infection.
We waited like two hours on a Saturday to see one of the docs working the Saturday shift.  It is nice the pediatrician's office is open on Saturday, but it's only open for four hours so everyone and their sick dogs are trying to get in.  The waiting room was a cesspool of germs and sickness, I had visions of un-vaccinated kids with measles or something, sitting three feet from us.

But alas, ear infection indeed.  And this time the doctor talked getting tubes before prescribing some antibiotics and sending us on our way.

But these meds didn't seem to work and over a week later I was trying to get back in to see his doctor.  Which was hard because #sickseason.  Luckily his doc is great and called him in a new med before seeing him, then he got us in the following morning.

And yup, still an ear infection.  Poor little Dash has lived with infected ears for so long.  So we finally got our referral to an ENT which I'm waiting for a call from.

Meanwhile little Bentz turns into Dr. Bentz when we go to see the pediatrican.
Thankfully, however, Bentz has only had mild colds and didn't catch the strep or worse, and same goes for Ben and me.  I assume when my kids get sick that I'll get it too, but this time it never happened.

So here's to tubes.  TBC.

Half Marathon PR X2!!

Hey!!!  A month has past since I have met with the ole blogster.

I keep a running list of topics I want to blog about so that I don't forget to document them on this little space of mine.  Most of my time goes into life/work and my spare-ish time goes into running.  I've been active on my running Instagram which has turned out to be fun because it has opened some fun doors for me and I've met a lot of awesome people and friends who are also running insane.  :)

Recently we had the Mesa-Phoenix 1/2 Marathon!  And three weeks prior was the Rock N Roll 1/2 Marathon!
I went into the Rock 'n' Roll 1/2 hoping to break 1:50 but was incredibly nervous and doubtful of my ability.  Running confidence has never been my forte, and running an 8:20 pace in my training runs felt harder than I though it should!
Well we got to race day and by mile two I was in the 7:xx pace.  I was shocked because it felt do-able.  Typically I slow myself down to save some for the end, but this race my coach told me not to be afraid to push it and GIVE IT YOUR ALL.  I have had a great training season and my base was so good that I knew it would get hard by the end of the race, but there's no way 7:xx should cause me to bonk in a 1/2.  So I kept going!
This race is a slight incline with a bigger hill at mile 9, then back down to the finish.  Not the fastest course, but I blew my goal out of the water with a 1:44:07!!  That is a 7:57 pace!  Beat my goal pace by close to 30 seconds a MILE.
Who AM I!?
So fast forward three weeks of no rest but just diving back into training despite feeling like I was NOT RECOVERED AT ALL, and finally a couple days before Mesa-Phoenix 1/2, I was starting to feel a little more normal/looser.  Just in time to do it again!

After a hard race I get little "niggles" of tightness/pain that I always freak out about.  I think because after my PR marathon I ended up sidelined a couple weeks later, and I think that injury stemmed from the marathon which is really hard on the bod.  I always text my coach about these niggles and he tells me STAY OFF GOOGLE.  lol  They usually subside to a 1/10 after a couple of weeks.  They do say it takes a day for each mile raced, to fully recover (even while continuing to run).  So some funk can be expected after hard racing.

My family came into town for the Mesa-Phoenix race, which they do each year.  My step-mom watches the boys at home (my dad/step-mom have a house down here now) which allows both Ben and I to race with the family which we are so grateful for!

I was a race ambassador for Mesa-Phoenix so I went and volunteered at the Expo the day before which was pretty fun.  They brought us Rubio burritos and snacks and I handed out 1/2 marathon bibs.  YAY.
My original goal for Mesa-Phoenix was a 1:45.  I set this goal last summer and thought it was ridiculously ambitious, but why not dream big?

Well I beat that at Rock N Roll!  My new goal was kind of in the air.  I was thinking 1:42, my coach thought I could maybe run a 1:39 if the stars aligned.  The plan was a 1:42 and if I was feeling awesomer, kick it up a notch.

Race morning was cold (PERFECT) and we were off!  I was so worried about going out too fast that I went out TOO SLOW.  I hit mile one at 8:17!!!  A 1:39 is a 7:37 pace so I immediately panicked and it messed with my head big time.  Getting up to race pace fast is not my forte and my head was filled with so many negative thoughts for many miles.  Which is stupid.  I need to work on that.
I kept dropping my pace and eventually ran a 1:41:28!!  7:44 pace!  It was a great race, I was uncomfortable for probably more than half of it, and the last couple of miles my legs were on auto pilot and I was losing control over them.  But my lungs felt good.  I actually think my lungs could get me to a BQ today, but probably not my legs.  YET.
But still...WHO HAS TAKEN OVER MY BODY AND STARTED RUNNING FAST??  It's awesome.  I am running my easier paced long runs faster than I was running marathon paced "sets" in my training leading up to my marathon PR:  3:56.

Meanwhile Ben had a goal to run under a 1:30 and Charlie (coach) encouraged him to push harder and have a little more ambitious goal.  His PR is 1:25 on a downhill course, and this day he was within 30-45 seconds of that and he ran a 1:26!  That is like a 6:33 average pace or something bonkers.

And the rest of the crew had great races.  They ran the 10k this year, and my sister is like 25 weeks pregnant.
For Ben's BQ he'll need around a 7:00 pace, I'll need around an 8:00.  Cray.  We have 9.5 weeks of injury paranoia to live through, -2 weeks for taper, maybe 3, depending on what our coach does leading up to the race.  But still,  6.5 to 7.5 weeks of staying healthy.  I am surprised (not really) how stressful staying healthy can be.  Last year Ben was sidelined completely just three weeks before this marathon.  I think that's increasing my anxiety, but really I need to just take it day by day, week by week, and not stress about that (or the weather...).

So far so good.  Ish.  ;)