Knitting

Greetings From The North Pole

IMG_20150305_170328Another snow day! Is this still fun? There is that whole guilt free sleep-in, you do not have to get dressed all day thing. It’s hard to argue with that. And my friends convinced me that I am practically required to make cookies on a snow day. It is a good excuse.

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It’s probably safe to say we are all ready to declare this our last snowstorm of the season. Just to balance out all of the cookies we will be eating today, I roasted some veggies too. Having the oven on all day is perfectly fine while it is snowing out.

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I am so glad I got six miles in yesterday when it was warm! Do you think this will all melt by tomorrow? ūüėČ So you know by now that I take a ton of pictures while I am running. I also change my music, text and sometimes talk on the phone (I know you guys love those conversations!). It’s all too much for the poor wires on my headphones and they are constantly breaking. This last time I went for a lower model Bluetooth pair. I love them! Sort of… I love not having a wire attached to my phone. But these headphones are so big! Without a headband they don’t even stay in my ears. Runner friends – let me know what Bluetooth headphones you love. I need help.

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Here is some random silliness from our Philly trip yesterday. I guess my kids are taking after me with the whole picture taking thing. In all fairness, I got it from my mom. Right, mom? I can’t even tell you about the drive yesterday. Apparently a prediction of snow is all it takes for the roads to get really crazy.

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Dane needed a perspective picture of Fezziwig for school. He doesn’t realize he is tiny.

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Don’t you love this? I’ll tell you more about it later. Namaste – the light in me sees the light in you. It’s a great thing to practice seeing the good in others.

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You Will Not Believe How Beautiful The Bay Is In The Winter!

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The weather has been pretty bad here lately. I’m talking 20s and 30s with lots of snow and slush and wind. Not very motivating to get outside and run! So on those days in between when the sun actually makes an appearance, I am making my run count. For me, this has meant the bay loop recently.

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This 5 mile loop takes you along the bay¬†with some lagoons and marsh thrown in¬†and it is so beautiful! Who wouldn’t want to do it twice?

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The marsh is frozen solid, but the birds don’t seem to mind at all.

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The bay along the beach is pretty frozen too. You don’t see this too often!

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I love living here and having such amazing routes to run. Today was one of those days that I would have kept going if I didn’t have to get the boys from school.

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The weather man is going to have to hide out if he keeps predicting snow. Three more days this week! Hopefully I can finish this scarf at least.

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Plus he will have to deal with Fezziwig. He is definitely not a fan of the cold and fully expects the snow to be shoveled before he goes outside!

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Stay warm!

My Idea of Fun

Apparently this winter is never going to end. Even though it is very pretty to wake up to falling snow, I would give just about anything for a warm summer day on the beach right now. There are only two things I can think of to get through this weather – knitting soft, warm scarves in bright colors and running.

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It’s been a while since I have knitted consistently. The truth is there just isn’t time to sit still for that long. But I was amazingly early to pick the boys up the other day and ran into the store for some yarn. The bright colors in this yarn are so cheerful and it is so soft! I was surprised at how much I have missed it. Hopefully I can make time for some easy projects while the weather is bad. Knitting and cold weather just go together.

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Of course running is the other thing that will cheer you up in the winter. It’s not just the “runner’s high” either. Being outside in the sunlight really does make you a happier person. It’s not that easy to get out there though! I love this picture. Every time I see a long open stretch of road I want to run. You have to love the salt lines on the road too!

Deciding what to wear to run in the winter isn’t that easy because you are always cold when you are not running. Once you start, you will warm up – I promise! I spent the morning before my run thinking about how cold it is outside and made the classic mistake of overdressing. (By the way – it is not that easy to run with a double layer of fleece lined pants on!) I ended up taking off a top layer and a bottom layer halfway through!¬† So here is a guide for your next run (and mine too!).

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There are days, especially in the winter, when you think you might not want to go for a run. (Craziness!!!!) But in all honesty, once you get started you will be glad you went. #neverregretarun

remember why you run

This is the absolute truth. It is also the way to start loving running (well, unless you are marathon training).

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Need more reasons to run? Definitely try running in the rain – in the summer. You will feel like a kid again.

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Guess what? I get to see my soccer team tomorrow. :-) We are starting team practices and I can’t wait to see them all!

So, I am wondering, what’s your¬†favorite thing to do¬†to get through the rest of the winter?

Recharged

Vacation is over, but boy did I need it! Or maybe I needed it to be over – I’m not entirely sure. Sometimes the holidays can be a ton of work. We had a great Christmas though – hope you did too!¬† I’ll get caught up with that post another day. Pretty much as soon as Christmas was done this year¬†I was outside taking down the lights and taking down the tree. Some years are just like that.

It’s a new day now. And look! No boot! :-)

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I bet you didn’t know wearing a boot for 6 weeks makes you taller. And faster. (I wish).¬† Of course I had to start the new year off with a New Year’s Day run. It was so awesome to run with Jeannette again too!¬†I miss running with my girls. As great of a run as it was, it reminded me that my stress fracture is not fully better yet. I’ll be back soon though! A friend posted this today.

Catch up

Quit running?? I can’t even imagine. I’ve gotten distracted from running before (college and kids) and sidelined from injuries. But I wouldn’t say I ever actually quit running since I started when I was about 16. If you are not a runner you should seriously give it a try. For now, it’s still the pool for me. And my Beachbody workouts at home.

I still can’t wait to get back to running. I am getting excited now that it seems like it is not that far away. I ordered these Hoka One One running shoes to get started again. In yellow!

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They have double the cushioning material than other running shoes, which absorbs shock and takes the impact away from your legs. They are definitely a maximalist shoe – the opposite of my first love; Brooks pure cadence. But it is what I need now. Runners that have worn them say once you run in Hoka Ones, you won’t want to wear anything else. We’ll see. Jeannette is going to try them with me. :)¬† You can learn more about them here:

The boys had a fun, relaxing vacation. Here they are on New Year’s Eve. Aidan has his boot¬† off too. :-)

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And the girls and I finally made time to catch up.

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The Girls sketch

And guess what I finished?¬†It’s amazing what you can accomplish when you take a break from the craziness!

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Now we are back in the swing of things, but we are recharged and refocused. It feels good!

So, I am wondering, did you have a chance to relax over break?

 

Christmas Caroling 2014

Tonight was our third annual neighborhood Christmas Caroling with the Cub Scouts.

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This is one of my favorite Christmas traditions. You would be surprised at how happy Christmas caroling makes people. We always let our neighbors know we are coming ahead of time and many of them have cookies and hot chocolate waiting for the boys.

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We have found that kids and adults get excited to see carolers at their door. This year I learned that one of our neighbors on our route is being treated for cancer and was excited we were coming. I saw him smile tonight when the kids were singing. That really is the spirit of Christmas to me.

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We wear silly hats and ring bells and sing out of tune (well, except for Lori who sings like a pro) and have a great time. It was a special night.

Christmas Caroling

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Sammy’s mischief continues.

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The boys actually did a lot of singing today, now that I think about it. They sang Christmas songs at church this morning too.

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We had a visitor at the Cub Scout pack meeting. I’m not sure how I feel about this since he gave the boys the wood for their pinewood derby cars as a present. The pinewood derby is a love hate thing for us (for everyone who participates, right?)

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Aidan was camera shy this time. Good thing Dane and his friends were ready to show off their hats.

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And Dane was very proud to win first place overall at the BB gun target shooting competition. It was ugly sweater night Рcan you tell?

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I have decided to start knitting again. I missed it and I didn’t even realize it until I started again. Plus, I saw this amazing yarn.

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So, I am wondering, are you ready for Christmas?

Pool Running and More Elf Antics

I am still counting the days until I can run again. It won’t even bother me if it is really cold out. Well, maybe it will a little at first. But I can’t wait to get back out there.¬†In the meantime, I am trying to make the pool my friend. Since I am not a real swimmer and am just getting my hour in so I won’t be completely out of shape when I can run again, I prefer an empty pool. Not too cold, thank you very much!

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For my “injured runner’s workout” I have been alternating 15 minutes of swimming with 15 minutes of pool running. I use the kick board for some of the swimming too. This time confirms for me that I am not ever going to be a triathlete!

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You are supposed to wear this aqua jogger belt when pool running, but I gave it up. The one workout I used it felt like it wasn’t a workout at all. It is similar to a life vest and it really just makes it very easy to run. I guess if you are very injured, you might need it.

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So I have been very laid back recently. My only goal is to spend a half hour swimming and a half hour running in the pool. I know (now) that most people count their laps or distance. I just do as much as I can and when I am running, I run hard – in the deep end. I guess some people run where their feet can actually touch the ground. I think the pool more than anything else is keeping my lungs in shape. I guess I will eventually find out. And my leg does not hurt from the pool like it did from hot yoga and the other workouts I was doing. So if you ever get injured, try the pool. (This is coming from someone who really does not like the pool, by the way).

December is such a crazy month! I can’t wait to tell you about our trip to Hershey, PA. But life goes on in between the craziness and those moments are fun too.

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Aidan has been doing school at home for the last couple of weeks. This has been a really great time for us. I love helping to teach him and he is so much happier and less stressed about his school work. He is home right now because of his leg, but we are giving serious thought to making this a permanent change. If you homeschool your kids, I would love to hear about your experience.

Basketball has started for Dane. I will never really understand why we start a sport in December when we barely have time for anything. But we are so lucky he has such a great coach and team. It’s going to be¬†a fun season.

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It has been so cold out lately! Aidan decided it’s best to wear 2 pairs of gloves. ūüėČ

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The cold weather always makes me want to knit again. Soft, colorful yarn and cozy projects. Now if only I could find the time to actually finish one.

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Dane’s Scouting Den is working on getting their pocket knives. Tonight they practiced on soap and made their own snacks.

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Sammy has been having more fun at our house. Here he is hanging from the chandelier.

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Playing with the boys’ Legos on the mantle.

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Hanging out on the refrigerator door (an annual last minute favorite).

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And toilet papering the tree.

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Never a dull moment. Fezzy joined us for the Grinch tonight.

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And look what I finally remembered to buy!!! Wipers! Now I might actually be able to see out of my window when it rains/snows.

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So, I am wondering, do you know anyone who homeschools their child? How is it going?

Knitting Time

Knitting is a great hobby.  It is relaxing and portable and when you are done you have created something useful.  If you haven’t tried knitting yet, you should.  I wish I had more time to knit.  Like many hobbies, it usually comes last on my list.  There are times though (like now) when I am making something as a gift and need to get it done.  I have three plush cats in various states of completion!

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Here are some cool projects if you are thinking about trying it out yourself.

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I’m off to stuff some cats…

imageSo, I am wondering, have you tried knitting?

 

March Comes In Like A Lion…

Snow in March!  Will it ever end?  It is hard to believe it is the 4th day of March and the kids have already had a day off and a delayed opening for snow.  But hopefully the old adage will be true and the month will go “Out Like A Lamb.”  Fingers crossed.  In the meantime, we are getting in a (last?) bit of snowy fun.

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I am so lucky to have a partner who always helps me dig out.  Here is my dad with the snow blower.

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Tomorrow I am putting my trax to use again.  I am not a fan of indoor workouts! 

This weather inspired me to knit scarves again.  Because I don’t have enough knitted scarves yet.  LOL.  Anyway, I really enjoy knitting scarves.  It is much more relaxing than a complicated pattern that you have to keep track of.  Here is my latest completed scarf.  I have had this yarn forever.  It is so soft, I just had to get it last winter.  My new favorite!

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I am making another one in a different yarn I just had to get because it was so pretty.  I’ll post it when it is finished.

Look what I found at Costco!  Shamrock Ravioli!  A little pesto, or maybe a green alfredo sauce and they will be perfect.  Now I don’t have to think about what to have for dinner on 3/17 anyway.

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So, I am wondering, do you eat something “Irish” on St. Patrick’s Day?

Inspiration

Well, it’s February.¬† We are past the hype of the holidays and not even close to the promise of warm, sunny days.¬† It’s time for inspiration.

in·spi·ra·tion

noun: inspiration.

The process of being mentally stimulated to do or feel something, esp. to do something creative.

Synonyms: creativity, inventiveness, innovation, ingenuity, genius, imagination, originality.

Inspiration comes in many forms, thankfully, because in the middle of winter I can be fickle!¬† One day I may be inspired by a great recipe and the next day I might be looking to redo the boys’ rooms.¬† I was recently inspired by a Valentine’s Day¬†idea I saw online and decided to go for it.¬† The idea is¬†to put one valentine heart inscribed with a motivational, positive statement about your child on his or her door each day.¬† I love the idea!¬† It is a great way to remember to praise your child and he can see your praise each day.¬† I decided to use one door for both boys because their room doors are already taken.¬† Here it is so far (excuse the schedule!).

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Knitting is also inspiring to me so I decided to make a new project.  I wanted a special hat for the upcoming Central Park Half Marathon, so why not make one?  This hat is unique because it has an opening in the back for your ponytail!  Perfect for running in the cold.  You can find the pattern here: http://www.ravelry.com/patterns/library/hannah-4.  I am still thinking of adding one more detail, but here it is so far.  This is the front:

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And this is the back:

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Of course if we ever run out of ideas, we can always turn to www.pinterest.com or www.ravelry.com or www.etsy.com for inspiration.  How do they think of this stuff?
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So, I am wondering, what inspires you in the middle of winter?

Game Day

It was game day today!¬† Basketball has ensured that we will not be sleeping in on a Saturday in the foreseeable future.¬† It is worth it though.¬† Dane had his first game early this morning.¬† His coaches and the referees are great at making sure it is a learning experience for the kids.¬† Dane had a great time and he was thrilled that his team’s uniforms are his favorite color!¬† He is number 10, same as his brother.¬† ; )

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From there we were off to Aidan’s game.¬† Our team played so great today!¬† I am so proud of them.

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We spent some time on gifts today.¬† I finally finished knitting my mom’s Christmas shawl!¬† Better late than never, I guess.¬† So we delivered that to her after the games.

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mom shawl

We also made a photo quilt online for someone very special to us who is very ill.  I hope it will cheer her up during the tough moments.  Grandkids do that best, I think.

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So, I am wondering, what is your child’s favorite show?

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