Monday, November 30, 2009
Since I'm not cooking family dinner (yes, I fed Katie and I, but we don't require all the trimmins' like the boys do!), I had some extra time on my hands. I decided to log more treadmill time because I had something that I've been wanting to try. I have been reading Angela's blog, Oh She Glows and she is a runner and I've been noticing that some of her treadmill time includes walks. But not just any walks...10% incline walks...at 4mph. Um yeah.
I've never done a 10% walk for a constant 30 minutes before. I usually kick it up and then after a couple of minutes, kick it right back down! So I started off and all was good for a few minutes. But it wasn't long before I was reaching for the incline button but I DIDN'T LET MYSELF TOUCH IT...but oh man I wanted to! It was a serious workout. No kidding here, folks. Thirty minutes is a lot longer than you think when you are just steady, steady climbing a 10% hill! I did find, after much shuffling through the iPod, that "I Gotta Feeling" by Black Eyed Peas is the best for hill walking. It had the perfect beat for my stride and it kept me going when I seriously wanted to quit. I must've repeated it 4 or 5 times! Hehe;-)
Ok, so I'm gonna sign off for tonight and enjoy the rest of my girls' evening with Katie. She is the BEST FRIEND a mama could have;-)
Sunday, November 29, 2009
I hope that everyone has had a glorious long weekend chock full of things to be thankful for! I know I have. I have had my family around me all weekend, and have certainly felt the love. Awwweee... Believe me, we have been counting our blessings.
I have also managed to keep to my running routine, which is sometimes difficult with schedules changing and things not being in a normal routine. I got up and hit the treadmill for an 11-mile run this morning before church. I watched the Biggest Loser on the NBC website and when the contestants were doing sprints on the treadmills, I raced them ;-) But it did have me thinking that I SO BADLY need to add more strength training to my regimen. So this afternoon, while watching The Proposal, I did a lower body workout. I can really tell the biggest difference in my body when I am lunging and squatting more, it's just getting up the motivation to do it!
Today I did: 50 standing squats,
10 side squats w/ leg lift (each side),
20 leg lifts w/ last rep hold for 30 sec (each side)
10 jump squats
My plan is to do a different body part each day, in addition to my runs of course. Tomorrow I plan to do abs, and Tuesday I'll do arms. We'll see how this goes and if need be, I'll tweak it as I go. But I really need the added benefit of some strength training. Yay!
We had a great service at church this morning. The pastor started in the book of Isaiah, chapter 9 which has the heading "To Us A Child Is Born." That's right. We're talking about Christmas, folks!!! As if December 1 lurking just a couple of days away isn't enough of a wake up call for ya, Christmas sermons being preached will certainly get a person in the Christmas spirit.
Today, Bro. Ron talked about names and how important they are: from what God named each animal as He created it (zebra, what?!), to what we name our children. For example, did you know that "Jesus" means "Jehovah Saves"? I didn't. And it's very cool. Leave it to God to come up with something so beautifully perfect! And the names listed in Isaiah 9:6 for Jesus are awesome as well: Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God, Everlasting Father, Prince of Peace. Here are my notes from the sermon this morning:
I find that when I take notes, I actively listen...and I get so much more out of it!
I really needed to be remined of God's peace this morning because last night, I had one of my mind wandering moments that didn't find me at my best by the time it was bedtime. I innocently picked up the new Sports Illustrated and started flipping through it when I suddenly came across an article on Stefanie Spielman. Stefanie is a mother of 4 and is the wife of NFL player Chris Spielman and a breast cancer survivor. She was diagnosed at the age of 30 and had 4 recurrences until she passed away last week at the age of 42. Here's an article on Stefanie and all she's done for breast cancer awareness and research, but more it's about what she did for other people that she will be treasured and remembered. It's a very positive story about her life and her impact she had on other people, but it's also about her death. And, unfortunately, that's what stood out to me just before bed on a quiet Saturday night. And I'm tellin' ya, the devil just took 'hold of that one little discouraging thought and led me right down that path where I felt like I was drowning. Like I had just had a death sentence given to me. So what to do when satan is coming at you full force?? You fight back. And the verse that kept coming to me was 1 Peter 5:7 "Cast all your anxiety on Him because He cares for you."
I repeated it to myself over and over and over until I felt it in my soul, and until I began to feel some peace. Peace came, then sleep came, then Jesus' characteristic of being the Prince of Peace came. Ahhhhhhhh..... Oh how I needed that this morning. Isn't it awesome how the Lord gives us just what we need when we need it?
So now I am choosing to focus on the life that Stefanie Spielman lived and the legacy that she left behind. I am choosing, today, to focus on the positive and go forward in the name of Jesus. Living today to it's fullest and knowing that God has a plan for me and that He is in control.
And the same goes for YOU! You don't have to have a diagnosis of cancer to need peace. If you could use some peace today, ask Him for it...He will heap it on your head if you ask:-)
Thursday, November 26, 2009
It has been a wonderful, family- and food-filled day here at our house! I’m sure most of yours too! We had the usual spread, deep fried turkey, ham, dressing, mashed potatoes and gravy, mac and cheese, green bean casserole, sweet potatoes, cranberries, rolls…oh my I think the list could go on and on! And it was ALL so good!!
Mom and Dad and all us kids minus our brother who was at his fiance’s family’s house.
Zachary and Ethan playing
Zachary and Caleb getting snuggle time.
I could post pics for days, but now I’m tired and am going to go to bed! I hope y’all had a great Thanksgiving!
I just finished up a 6.5 mile run and am getting ready to shower and start getting things ready for the day! I am VERY excited to have everybody here at our house again this year, like NORMAL. I craved normalcy so much at this time last year and now here we are, one year later, and we finally have it. Praise God!
In my java & Jesus time this morning, I listed my top ten things I am most thankful for:
5) Family & Friends
4) My Kids-Tyler, Zachary, and Katie
3) Jack <3
And I could have gone on and on. I hope that everyone has a wonderful Thanksgiving and has as many "problems" as I did limiting my list to 10! Love Y'all!!
Wednesday, November 25, 2009
November 25, 2003 at 9:10pm our little princess entered the world. Katie Elizabeth weighed in at 7 lbs 3 oz, which was quite impressive considering she was almost a month early! She was greeted by her very handsome and excited big brothers who couldn’t wait to get their hands on her. There were also many grandparents, aunts, uncles, and cousins at the hospital awaiting her arrival. We don’t do things SMALL y’all!
Wow. I really does seem like only yesterday! I can’t believe she SIX already. Where did the time go?!
My Precious Katie,
I wish I could put into words how much you mean to me. You are the perfect princess that we prayed for to complete our family. I remember being 9 months pregnant and doing that first load of baby clothes laundry and opening the dryer to a beautiful load of just PINK fluff! It just brought joy to my heart and a smile to my face. I remember praying, “Dear God, please give me a little girl who will be my best friend and never leave my side.” Whoa. You, my daughter, are proof that God answers prayers. From day 1 you have been by my side. Even though some days I ask you many times when you are going to sleep in your own bed, inside I am dreading the day when you want to. So I will cherish every warm, snuggly moment!
When I pray for you everyday, I ask God to keep you healthy and safe. I pray that He will place a hedge of protection all around you and keep you safe from harm. I know that I can’t watch out for you all the time, but I know that we serve a God who can, and DOES. I pray that you will take the love of Jesus in your heart wherever you go, and that others will be able to see His light shine through you. I also pray that God will leave me here to see you grow and hopefully give me grandbabies someday. A loooonnnnggg time from now, just so you know;-)
Thank you for enriching our lives and being a blessing to everyone you meet. Happy Birthday, sweet girl. I love you more than you know <3
Tuesday, November 24, 2009
Sunday, November 22, 2009
Oh wow. I am a wiped out girl this afternoon. We have had 3 days of go-go-go and now I’m ready to collapse! It was all good, fun stuff though so everything was TOTALLY worth it! Let’s recap:
FRIDAY: Katie had her first-ever friend birthday party! She will be 6 this Wednesday and with Thanksgiving and stuff going on I thought it would be better to separate things just a little. So she had 7 of her little friends over from 5-7 for a Fancy Nancy party. It was the.cutest.thing.ever! They were giggly and “fancy” and they squealed with delight every time a present was opened. OMGosh. Precious. And after everybody left and the boys had all gone to bed, I sat up with Katie in the living room as she played with all her new toys; I was watching and thinking that I am SO thankful that I am here to enjoy every single moment.
SATURDAY: My sister, Jessica, is 32 weeks pregnant and while our other sister, Layne, and I are throwing her a baby shower in a couple of weeks, her school-friends and fellow teachers threw her a shower at her fave mexican restaurant in PB. We had lunch and then got to watch her open some wonderful baby goodies! It was a great day. After we got home and the boys got in from hunting, we went out to eat and then came home to collapse!
SUNDAY: I got up at 630am this morning and had my coffee with my devotion time. Around 7 I hit the treadmill for a lovely half-marathon, 13.1 miles! I completed my run in 2hrs 3min 37sec…just in time to get cleaned up and head to church! Afterwards, Zachary, Katie, and I headed to PB to eat lunch and go see Planet 51. I was afraid that all hype over New Moon would makes things rather hectic and crazy, and while the parking lot was very full, the rest of the theater experience was pretty normal today. The movie was cute, but you put a tired mama with a full belly in a dark theater and you had a good opportunity to sleep! I closed my eyes a couple of times, but I don’t think I ever actually dozed off. I don’t think ;-)
As for the rest of the week, we are just preparing for Thanksgiving on Thursday. Everyone from both families (mine and Jack’s) comes to our house for Thanksgiving and it is beyond wonderful. I love Thanksgiving!! And this year, we are especially thankful for our many blessings.
Wednesday, November 18, 2009
I am still pretty hot about these new breast cancer screening recommendations, as you can imagine. As a breast cancer survivor, and one that was considered low-risk at the time of diagnosis, this feels like a slap in the face to me. I feel like they are overlooking women who are considered low-risk and basically sending the message that our lives aren’t worth it. Not worth the screening, not worth the testing…all to save some bucks?? I am angry, offended, and disappointed that the task force made these recommendations.
I don’t know how many of you listen to XM radio, but if I am in the car during the Gayle King show that’s what I’m listening to. Well this morning she was talking, of course, about these new breast cancer screening recommendations and was taking calls for people to weigh in. I have NEVER done this before, but I totally picked up the phone and GOT THROUGH! I spoke with Gayle’s producers and was on the line to talk to her and…they ran out of time!! Ahhhhhhh! Darn it! And I was all ready, too! Fired up, can you imagine?! LOL
Anyway, another lovely lady is weighing in on the topic, my breast dr, Dr. Julie Margenthaler. She was interviewed by the NBC affiliate in St. Louis yesterday and you can view her interview here.
Have a good Wednesday, friends!
Tuesday, November 17, 2009
After getting the kids off to school, I came home and busted out 6 miles on the TM. I am amazed, and excited, to see my speed + endurance increase simultaneously since finishing treatment and starting on the BP med. Guess things are getting back to normal. Yay!
I wanted to share with you today, some rather interesting new guidelines put forth by U.S. Preventive Services Task Force that made headlines yesterday. Every news outlet is covering it, but you can read CNN's report here. This task force is now releasing new guidelines for women and mammography. Here's the differences:
- Routine mammograms should begin at the age of 40.
- Women should get mammograms yearly.
- Monthly breast self exams.
NEW (they are saying none of these apply to those who are high-risk = family history)
- Mammograms should start at age 50.
- If the screening is negative, a women may be able to wait 2 years in between mammograms.
- No need for monthly breast self exams.
WHAT?!?! I am so outraged at this report that I can hardly stand it. I was watching the news last night when the report came on and was practically yelling at the tv! I could not believe what I was hearing!! Part of their reasoning is because there are many false positives that occur between the ages of 40-49 in diagnostic mammography...um, well, what about the lives that it DOES save?? Seems to me they are saying that "yeah, it does save some lives, but they aren't worth it." You've got to be kidding me. 15% of women in their 40s detect breast cancer through mammography. Is this task force saying these lives aren't worth it?? The best thing we have in the fight against breast cancer is early detection. MAMMOGRAMS AND BSEs save lives and are a big part of that!
I am so disappointed in this new report. It makes me so sad that some women out there will hear this and think that it is ok to not get their mammos until 50 and not worry about BSEs and because of this, breast cancer will go undetected. Do you know what damage breast cancer can do in that amount of time?? I let mine go for a year and a half and had lymph node involvement by the time I was diagnosed...and I was one of the lucky ones. With my age and receptors, I am lucky that it hadn't spread to other areas of my body. I can't imagine that they would even put this report out there. I can bet you money, sadly, that the death rate for breast cancer, which has been on the decline in the last several years, will slowly be on the rise if this report is allowed to stand. After years of pushing and pushing and getting the message out for early detection, it seems we have just went backwards about 20 years in our mission.
Before this report came out yesterday, I was of the belief that we were headed in the other direction. Where younger and more women were getting screened, and new (and better) imaging tests like the breast MRI would slowly replace the mammogram. I am just disheartened. Apparently so is the American Cancer Society, who doesn't agree with this new report at all. And neither do the physicians that I have seen interviewed on the various news shows. Which leads me to wonder how on earth this task force came up with such bogus suggestions?? Is it insurance companies? Political? Who knows. But I hope it isn't leading backwards down the road that was just paved with the hard work of those fighting for early detection and screening.
So for all you gals out there...go with the current guidelines recommended by the American Cancer Society:
- Yearly mammograms beginning at the age of 40, unless you have a family history of breast cancer. If so, take the age at which that family member was diagnosed and subtract 10 years to get the age that you should begin getting screened.
- Do monthly breast self exams. This is how I found my lump. I was only 29 when I felt it...there was no yearly mammogram in the plans for me. It was just what I felt and had to go from there.
- Talk to your doctor.
< stepping down off soapbox now;-) >
Monday, November 16, 2009
Hello friends! It’s been a couple of days, I know, but I have a very good excuse. In fact, the BEST excuse in the world! I had another precious nephew arrive early Friday morning!!!
Caleb Jaxon was born at 1248am to Layne and Brett, and big brother Ethan! He arrived weighing in at 8lbs. 13 oz and 20” long. Everybody is doing great! Ethan loves his baby brother and everybody is adjusting to having another precious boy in the house.
Yeah, I’m a little proud, can ya tell?! He is soooo sweet!
Ethan meeting Caleb for the first time…awwwwe;-)
Ethan making sure everybody is being quiet!
My sister, Layne, and her boys! How precious are they?!
What a beautiful blessing little Caleb is.
The rest of the weekend was spent doing some shopping. We were gone for a total of 3 days and my parents and other sister, Jessica, and I took advantage of every minute. We shopped and ate, and ate and shopped;-) The BEST way to spend a long weekend, in my opinion. I hope y’all had a great one, too! Love~
“Sons are a heritage from the LORD, children a reward from him.” Psalm 127:3
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Happy Veterans Day everyone! Are you enjoying a day off from work today, or no? I know some places are open, some aren't. I know I won't have to do my usual errand-running today because of the banks and post office being closed. I'm not complaining:-)
But let's not forget the real reason today is special. Today is the day set aside to honor our military Veterans. So whether they are actively serving in our US military, or have served in the past, please take a moment to thank a Veteran today. Maybe hug his/her neck! They so greatly deserve it, and so much more.
My special vet is my Papa, my mom's dad, who served in World War II. He fought in Normandy on D-Day and drove a U-boat onto Utah Beach on June 6, 1944. He talked about it occasionally throughout the years, and he and my Nana went back to Utah Beach on the 50th anniversary of D-Day in 1994. Here is a pic of them and then the back of picture where Nana wrote on it:
They came to visit right after their trip and they brought us all shirts from Germany and France. Here's the pic of all of us grandchildren with our Nana and Papa:
L-R: Papa, Layne, Kevin, Jessica, Kathleen, Matthew, Erica (ME!), Nana
I had no idea how much digging out these pics would affect me today! I am just overwhelmed with gratitude and thankfulness for our freedom and those who unselfishly serve our nation. And it makes me miss my grandparents, too! Papa passed away on August 12, 1996, and Nana on December 12, 2007. There is no one that loves you more unconditionally than your grandparents and I miss their hugs and all the fun stuff we used to do together. So I'll just say this, if your Nana or Papa are still with us, give them an extra hug today ;-)
So lightening the mood, I had a fabulous run this morning! Katie went back to school today (Hallelujah!) so I headed outside for a beautiful morning run. Here's my stats:
See what I'm talking about with my mileage and time lately?? Woohoo!! I'm lovin it!
Have a great Veterans Day, all!
Tuesday, November 10, 2009
I got up at the usual 530am, had my java and Jesus time and then hit the treadmill for a 5.5 mile run. I have been SO energized lately! I don't know if it is due to the blood pressure medicine, the fact that Herceptin treatments are over, or what...but I am LOVIN IT! My afternoon slump is gone and runs have been faster and higher mileage. I hit 46 miles last week...can't remember the last time it was that high. It's been awhile. SO good to be feeling good!
Today I am picking the boys up early from school because Tyler has an orthodontist appt in PB. AND I may or may not be going a little earlier than necessary so we can go eat lunch first ;-) Katie is on her last day of Tamiflu so she is still at home. She goes back to school tomorrow. Lemme tell ya, this girl NEEDS school! She is bouncing off the walls at home right now! I am so glad that she is better and her flu symptoms never got as severe as some. Michelle believes that her having the first 1/2 of her H1N1 shot gave her some protection from the severity of it. So all that lingers now is the occasional cough, no biggie. Thanks for all the prayers for the little princess!
I am busy planning two different parties and getting invitations out this week: Katie's 6th Birthday party, and my sister Jessica's baby shower. Could we BE any busier?! I wouldn't have it any other way:-)
I am gonna get off here for now. It's almost time for Katie and I to get the boys, and I still need dinner ideas so I have to browse some recipes for a minute before we leave. Hmmmmm, what to fix? Have a terrific Tuesday, lovlies!
Sunday, November 8, 2009
I am happy to report that Katie seems to be doing better today *crossing fingers!* We didn't have to get up in the middle of the night for fever medicine and as of now, she has barely a low-grade temp. She DOES, however, have an awful cough :-( The little princess slept until 1030am, guess she needed her beauty sleep ;-) I'm praying she continues to improve today!
Since we couldn't go to church today, I scheduled myself a half-marathon on the treadmill this morning. Yep 13.1 miles on the ol' 'mill...finished in 2 hrs. 3 mins. and 9 seconds. Yippee!! It felt great to run so long this morning. We have absolutely glorious weather right now, so it's a shame that I couldn't do it outside but what can ya do...it was great anyway!
I thought I may put in a movie or watch some shows online during my run this morning, but I never had to. I plugged in my iPhone and played some oldies over and over and over again. Funny how new music makes the miles go faster, and can put some spring in your step! Here's what I played this morning:
- Here Comes the Sun - The Beatles
- This Will Be (An Everlasting Love) - Natalie Cole
- Let's Get Together - Hayley Mills
- L-O-V-E - Nat King Cole
- There She Goes - The La's
- Jack and Diane - John Mellencamp
- Hurts So Good - John Mellencamp
- R.O.C.K. In The U.S.A. - John Mellencamp
Don't judge ;-) Do you recognize the link between the first 5 songs?
The Parent Trap!
I love love love the older version, I remember watching it as a kid, and I will watch Lindsey Lohan's 1998 version anytime. In fact, that's what Katie and I were watching last night when I was making my playlist for this morning. I love the songs and they certainly kept me moving this morning! As far as the last 3 go, well, I heard "Jack & Diane" on the radio the other day and it reminded me of high school and so that led me to download some other faves. BTW, you runners out there, "R.O.C.K. In The U.S.A." has a great running beat and I must have replayed that song alone a million times!
So it's been a great start to the day! I hope yours is looking as beautiful wherever you are! God Bless!
Saturday, November 7, 2009
I wrote Luke 8:48 on a blank notecard and taped it to my bathroom mirror so that I could see these beautiful words first thing every morning: "...Daughter, your faith has healed you. Go in peace." The verse you choose may be different, but for me this is a p.e.r.f.e.c.t daily reminder that God has healed me and wants me to trust Him and go in peace. It is such a great thing to read first thing every morning and periodically throughout the day. Just the kind of reminder I need.
So the flu bug has officially hit our house :-( Katie tested positive for Type A flu yesterday morning. I was so disappointed because 1)I don't like her to be sick (duh), and 2)We took every precaution and have been SO careful to keep us healthy. A little over a month ago we all had the seasonal flu shot, and then about 3 weeks ago we had our H1N1 flu shots. But, despite our proactive approach, Katie has caught the bug anyway. And apparently so has most of both Kindergarten classes at school...poor babies. Katie is one of a couple that have tested positive for Type A flu. Needless to say, the "ickies" has hit the elementary.
Katie is doing pretty well, considering. She has run a fever of 99.5-101 since she woke up on Thursday morning but it is pretty well managed by rotating Tylenol and Motrin. More props goes to the Motrin end...why oh why can't Tylenol work as well as Motrin?! Darn it. When she is fresh off a dose she is playing, cheering, asking to go to school, and being her usual bouncy self. When her fever starts to come back up and she is due for another dose she is puny and tired. She also has a cough and snotty nose.
So along with rotating the Tylenol and Motrin every 3-4 hours, as needed, we are also doing breathing treatments with a nebulizer twice a day. This is strictly precautionary; it keeps her airways open and lungs clear so that hopefully nothing pneumonia-like will set up. Katie is also on Tamiflu twice a day to help with her symptoms. And we have cough medicine to give her at bedtime so she can sleep without coughing. NOTE: She doesn't like any of this and vocalizes it very well.
So we are just relaxing here at home for the time being. Katie won't be cleared to go back to school until she is finished with the Tamiflu, which will be Wednesday. She is very upset that she can't go to school, or anywhere for that matter. I am saying plenty of get better prayers for Katie and the rest of the sick little ones. I would appreciate any y'all could send our way as well :-)
On another note, I have been watching Food Network all morning and I think I have stumbled onto something delicious to make for dinner from 5 Ingredient Fix:
Have a great Saturday, friends ;-)
Thursday, November 5, 2009
Ya know, I really hope that this blogging once-a-week thing is not gonna be the norm forever! Every time I think about sitting down and writing a post, I am bombarded with many other things that need to be done: laundry, dinners, housework, office work, and the list could go on and on…unfortunately ;-)
But for the last week, here has been our life:
HALLOWEEN 09 TOO MUCH RAIN=FLOODING AT OUR CABIN! YIKES!!CHURCH HAYRIDE AND BONFIRE SCHOOL HALLOWEEN PARTY Yesterday Tiffany and I made a trip to STL to get our ports flushed since it has been 5 weeks since last treatment. All went well, and I thought I was going to be an aunt again before the day was done because my sister Layne called and thought she was in labor…false alarm! So no baby yesterday, but soon. :-) Oh, and an OMGosh moment with my BP yesterday, 124/82!!! That, folks, is an all-time low for me in STL! Guess the BP med is working! Yay!
We are having family pics taken tomorrow, much to all my boys’ chagrin. They are really balking this time and I have no patience for it, really. You would think after the last year we have had that a family picture would NOT be so out of the question! But no, being men and boys that they are, they are really complaining. They better be careful, or it will be mother-daughter pics. ;-)
AND Katie woke up with a cough and a 101.4 fever this morning. She feels fine and was disappointed that she couldn’t go to school. But her class of 19 only has 9 today, so something is going around…unfortunately most of it is flu :-( I am praying that the seasonal flu shot AND the H1N1 shots that we all got are going to kick in and she won’t get any worse.
I hope that everyone is having a great week and I also hope that it won’t BE a week before my next post! Later, friends!
PS~ Something I’m working on: “Do everything without complaining or arguing,” Philippians 2:14
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