Friday, August 26, 2011

Secret Identities- part 2.

For the past hour or two I've been called by a new name. Super Hero Mommy! And I've been calling this guy, Super Hero J. We are cleaning and we made lunch and sitting on potties and stuff, pretty much just going  about our regular day to do list, but we are wearing capes, and every once and a while Super Hero J says "Supper Hero Mommy! We Fly!" and then we run around the front room and the kitchen and our capes trail behind us and it is tons of fun. It is fun to be a Super Hero Mommy.

So now lets delve a little deeper into Kate- Who is she? Well, I can tell you a little, because she happens to be me. I can tell you that over the past few years I have been trying to make a big change, a change in my health and habits.

It was probably a decade ago that the first medical professional told me I should lose weight. Not just because I was overweight, but because I was overweight with a family history of medical issues which were affected, aggravated or possibly even brought on by being overweight. I agreed and I signed up to be able to use the employee fitness room at the hospital where I was working, as part of that I had a fitness evaluation done, I remember I weighed 190 pounds and I had about 35% body fat. I was AMAZED! A few of my coworkers signed up at the same time as me and we all met in the morning before work and walked a few miles, 2 or 3 times a week. It worked. I got down to about 175 pounds and I was happy with my progress. I managed to maintain a weight around 170-180 for a few years. In those years I got married, and I stopped going to the gym before work, or after work and I got back up to 190 and then eventually found myself at 202. It was at this point that my doctor not only told me that I should lose some weight,( I was bemoaning the fact that I wanted to have a baby but couldn't seem to get pregnant.) but he also gave me a little magazine called "Weigh to Health" that gave tips on how to go about losing weight and getting healthier.

And that is where I was a few years ago. Ken bought me a Treadmill for Valentines day that year- because that is what I wanted. And I once again started to walk a few miles every other day or so, then I started to run a little, eventually I was able to run 3.1 miles. I lost about 25 pounds. I ran my first 5k and and we got pregnant! I gained 60 pounds during that pregnancy, and after it was all over I found myself once again staring at a scale that seemed to be stuck between 190 and 202. I would lose, but then I would gain. I knew there had to be something more I could do. I changed our diet a little, more vegetables, less meat. It helped, but I still was kind of stuck. I started running again and had some success, I got down to 183 pounds and then I found out I was pregnant!

By 26 weeks I had gained 40+ pounds, well on my way to gaining 60 pounds again. Then I found out that I failed my second Glucose test. I had Gestational Diabetes. I had to change, for the good of myself and my baby. I was told that if I didn't lose weight after this baby was born I would have a 90% chance of having diabetes withing the next 5 years. And you know what, that was enough for me. I don't know how it all worked, but I am pretty sure God's hand has been mixed up in my adventures over the past year. He gave me the opportunity to change my diet while I was pregnant- an opportunity to learn new things about food and about myself and what I could do if I had a good reason to do it. I also believe he changed my body somehow. I am able to do things now that I had previously tried and couldn't do. It took me 6 months of trying to be able to run 3 miles without stopping. After B was born, and I could run again, it took me about 2 months to get back to 3 miles, and then I went out one day and ran 6! Just like that, no problems, I was even pushing a jogging stroller, and not only did I run it, but I enjoyed it. It was MIRACULOUS! How in the world? There was no reason in the world, it was a blessing, I like to think that God gave me my little baby B as a way to bring about a miraculous change in my body. Someday I am going to ask him about how all that works, for now I am just grateful.

Here is the part where I talk about Identities! Just in case you were worried that I would never get to the point. So i am sitting here in my new pants and if I look down at my legs, I really don't see much of a difference. I see my legs, my belly, they look pretty much the same to me. I do see subtle changes in my face, I see more muscle definition in my legs and arms, even a little in my abs which is kind of cool. But I don't look in the mirror and see a stranger, I see me. I am still the same person, just because I've lost 25% of myself doesn't change me for the better or for the worse. I am Kate- I am a precious Daughter of God, I am a beloved daughter of Al and Billie, I am the silly wife of Ken and the frazzled mother of J and B. I had the opportunity to spend time with a friend who has been struggling with some horrible things that happened to her while she was young. She, like many people, sought to control her life in anyway possible and eventually she developed an eating disorder. She then struggled with the eating disorder, got better and recently relapsed into the old habits. I was allowed to be part of her life while she was doing her best to change those habits. I tried to let her know how much I loved her, how very much of worth she was and that I fully supported her. I hope she still knows that I believe those things and that I still pray for her. We once talked about being comfortable with who we are and I got to thinking that she and I might be having similar experiences, both struggling to be healthy, knowing that there was a good chance that once we got to "Healthy" we might not recognize ourselves. I am starting to realize that I do recognize myself, because I was not my weight, my body is part of me, but it is not all of me. I think this is something very important to remember, as we look at ourselves and as we look at others. We are very complex creatures, God wouldn't have made us any other way, we are not one dimensional begins, we are more like the most intricately cut gems you could ever imagine, with millions of facets. Each facet could represent a different part of our life, a lesson learned, a trial endured. We are brilliant in our beauty, if we allow ourselves to be polished and shaped by God.

So that's my secret identity, I'm Gorgeous, just the way God made me. It has nothing to do with how I look physically from moment to moment, day to day or year to year. But is has everything to do with knowing myself, knowing who I am and why I do things. I am still the same person I was 16  years ago when I asked God if he was really there, and if he really cared about me. He answered my prayer then, and he has allowed me to get to know myself little by little since then, any changes I make to my physical appearance don't seem to change ME. I am grateful for that. I hope I can help my children, and all my other loved ones, come to know WHO they are as well. So that someday, when we are all together again with God we won't be surprised to see ourselves as he sees us, because we will be comfortable with who we are, we are His Children.

Well, thanks for reading, thanks for supporting and loving me. I have to go finish my chores now!

Fun with Baby B!

My baby is growing up, there are times that I look at him and he doesn't look like a baby anymore, he looks like a little man, but he is mostly baby still.
My little B has been teething! He got his first tooth 2 months ago and it was a lonely tooth for a while, in the past 4 weeks he has gotten 4 more teeth and they are still coming. He hasn't been the happiest little boy at night (why is it that teething is worse at night?) but he is still one of the most perfectly sweet and cute little boys in existence, even if he is a little cranky. If you look close you can see his big and little teeth, the two top teeth are GIGANTIC and the 3 bottom teeth are very little and kind of crooked!

I decided I wanted to get some video of B, he has been shaking his head from side to side in a "No" type pattern, he gets a big smile on his face when he does it, I think he is thinking to himself "Whoooa, everything looks funny!". So I was trying to get that on video and I also got his first and so far only sign- More. Like most babies his More is very different from the actual sign, but he and I know what it means, and that's what counts. This Video and the pictures above were all taken during breakfast this morning.

Monday, August 22, 2011

To Fast!

These pictures were too cute not to post. Here is my Baby B, all grown up and looking like a man. They grow to fast! I am 99% sure that B is teething (he has been teething for months, they are coming REALLY SLOW) He must be getting all his teeth at once, and he really doesn't like it. But he puts on a good happy face! He got his first tooth at 11 months, in the past two weeks or so he has added 3 more. Last night I got to hold my B in the middle of the night (right aroudn the time the Baby Orajel wore off), there is not much sweeter than a sweet baby letting you know that you are their favorite form of comfort. 
B is obsessed with the Sacrament! At church he copies what is done as the Sacrament is prepared and passed to the church congregation. Yesterday after lunch J saw a loaf of bread on the counter and quickly grabbed it, proclaiming happily "Oh, My Sacrament Bread!" Then he gathered up a few of his leftover lunch items and went in the front room. A few minutes later he called to me, telling me he needed me. He was kneeling next to the piano bench. I took this picture and he stood up. When I sat down, he told me that he was ready for the sacrament, and he knelt down and said a prayer, then he gave me some of what he had prepared, he did a very good job tearing a piece of bread into small pieced, but he also had multicolored gold fish crackers and chunks of cheddar cheese. You use what is available, I guess.
This morning he played sacrament again, this time there were no gold fish and no cheese, but there was a cup of water. I love these boys of mine. I am so glad that I get to be with them and teach them and watch them grow. I hope they don't out grow me!

The South Valley Half Marathon

On Saturday I ran my first half marathon. I knew it started in a canyon and ended roughly 13 miles away from the canyon AND I hoped it was mostly downhill. Well, the first 3 miles were down hill then the next two miles were pretty flat...but then there were 3 miles of up hill running...I must admit I walked a little more through this part than I had anticipated, basically because I had not anticipated 3 miles of hills. All in all though I think I did pretty good for my very first half marathon. I finished in 2 hours 34 minutes (according to my watch) and when I crossed the finish-line these cute little guys were waiting for me! Ken too! Baby B almost jumped out of his stroller he was so excited to see me, which made me very happy.
Look, I'm moving so fast that I'm blurry! Blurry and Tired!
My Sister Laurie and her husband Brent also ran the race, I was glad to have them there, even though we all ran at our own pace, I knew that I had friends out on the course.
When I sat down in January and decided that I wanted to run a half marathon it seemed like a huge goal, and it was. I am very pleased that I was able to complete it, I worked hard, I paced my training and tried my best to avoid injury. It wasn't easy, in fact while I was running (or walking) up those hills I decided that my decision to run another half marathon in 3 weeks was not a very good one. Maybe in a couple of years, when my body is more used the the punishment, and maybe if one of the half's is an easy one. Laurie told me that she would consider the South Valley Half Marathon to be a Medium Hard course, and you know what, I did it, and I am happy and now I am going to take it easy for a couple of weeks and let my body recover. Then maybe I will run another one later in the fall.

I have a 10k scheduled for October 8th- and I am hoping to run in the Human Race again on Thanksgiving- maybe I will do the 10k there as well (I like to burn a good amount of calories on Thanksgiving :)  ).

I will tell you this, I am pretty darn sure that I will not be moving on to Marathons. At least for now, I am only Half Crazy.

Monday, August 15, 2011

My Little Linebacker

Cuteness Personified! 

Last Friday the whole family went with little B to his 12 month well child check. It was fun. We were told that B is pretty much a perfect specimen of a 12 month old AND that he had the cutest laugh that the doctor had heard all day. Here are his stats-

Weight- 26 pounds 12 oz = 92nd percentile (J was 23 pounds 2 oz 54th percentile)
Height-  31 3/4 inches = 94th percentile (J was 32 inches! 96th percentile)
Head-   18 3/4 inches = 82nd percentile 

Right around the time that J turned 1 I heard that pediatricians were not necessarily having children drink whole milk, well, J's doctor had him drink whole milk for the whole year. Not B, he has sufficient stores of baby chub, and he is going straight to 1% (that is, just as soon as he finishes the whole milk we bought him before we knew the doctor was okay with him drinking the same milk as the rest of the family). 

I took this picture yesterday night, Ken was taking care of business! Holding both the boys while they drank their pre-bed milk AND talking shop with the President of the local Special Needs Mutual.

 Some things about B, He smiles ALL THE TIME (well 95% of the time). He worships his brother (once again, 95% of the time). He has only fallen down the stairs once! He crawls super fast and tries to eat everything he can get his hands on. He can easily pull himself up next to things like couches, tables, walls and pianos. And if he is standing next to a piano, he will start to play it. He is also starting to cruise- just a little.
More? Sure! B loves fruit! Lately he has been devouring plums,  or bananas, he got his hands on a strawberry today and made quick work of it. He loves black beans and all kinds of vegetables. He prefers solid foods to milk and is more easily pacified by a bowl of oatmeal and apple sauce or some beans and tomatoes than by a sippy cup of milk. In this way he is VERY different from his brother.

J was addicted to milk, he seriously could down 30 or more ounces a day, B might drink 16- which according to the doctor is on the low side of average, he told us not to worry too much about that- because like we said earlier- B has some pretty good baby chub storage going on. J was also not the most patient baby, especially when it came to sleeping and or being awake in his crib. If he was awake in there he was complaining. B is pretty close to the opposite, I often have to check on him to see if he is still sleeping or if he is awake, and much of the time when I check after a couple hours of him napping, he is sitting or laying in his bed, just waiting quietly for someone to come get him. He is a sweet boy.

We love our little B, my sweet little bear. I can't imagine what life would be like without him, but I also feel like this first year of his life flew by much faster than J's first year did. I guess it is because J had all my attention and B has had to share it.

Thursday, August 11, 2011

Running Away from Home

Since January, I've been training for a Half Marathon. Prior to setting that goal I never imagined myself running 13.1 miles. But it seemed like the right thing to do and I knew that if I set smaller goals, a 5k and a 10k, and if I found a training schedule followed it, I would be able to do it. Well my first Half Marathon is on August 20th, and I am ready! I can do it! I know I can. Today I had my final long training run, I ran 12 miles. I was a little scared, because I got sick and I've been kind of lethargic and my knee hurt while I was running 11 miles last week. But I've done everything I know how to do, I stretched and tried my best to use my cross training days to strengthen my knees, I made sure to make spaghetti for dinner last night, and I told my Heavenly Father all about my desire to run and my fear of not being able to, because of injury or illness.

We have super nice neighbors and there have been several who have helped me out during the last 8 months, watching the boys for me while I ran 5 or more miles (they can be fun companions for 2, 3 or 4 miles but they get bored and whinny after that) and today was no exception when it came to helpful neighbors. At 7:45 a kind 13 year old neighbor (J's favorite babysitter) came over to watch the boys and I ran away from home.

I usually walk down to the corner and then start running, with a vague idea of where I want to go.Today I took a path that I've taken before, but it felt different today, it felt new. I ran through my usual neighborhoods but about a quarter of the way through my run I found my way onto the Jordan River Parkway. It was a delightful experience, but I think the thing that made it great was the fact that I wasn't alone. To the casual observer, I was alone, but what they didn't realize was that I was talking to God. I was still a little nervous about the distance, about my knees, I wondered if I was pushing myself too far, too fast. And even tough I had told Heavenly Father all about last night as I went to bed and this morning as I woke up, he was very much willing to let me keep talking to him. Soon my pleas of "Please, just let me run, please bless my joints, bless that they won't hurt" turned into praises of "I feel so great! Thank You so much for letting me do this!" It was pretty amazing. I totally have the best running partner ever!

So yes, I was running away from home, 6 miles away from home to be exact, I really felt at home the whole time. At 6 miles I turned around and headed back along the same path, each step taking me closer to my sweet babies, each step bringing me closer to my Heavenly Father. That is how it felt. I liked it. I think it helped me understand why it is important to pray always, to always have a prayer in our hearts, to always keep that line of communication open. I mean, I didn't receive any great personal revelation, nothing life changing, just a sweet peace and the sure knowledge that my pleas were heard and my prayers were answered.

Just thought I would share. Thanks for listening.

Monday, August 8, 2011

Sometimes it's good to be a Loser

Last week I got to meet Deni Hill, she was the at home winner of the Biggest Loser last season. His daughter, the one who got married while she was on the show, lives in my sister Laurie's neighborhood. The ladies from the local Relief Society got together for a meeting where Deni was speaking, and Laurie invited me to come. Thanks Laurie! 

So what did Deni tell us. Nothing much new. She said that it is all about calories in verses calories out, how much you eat verses how much you burn, if you burn enough you will lose, in order for her to lose the 125 pounds she had to work out for 4 hours or more per day. She said that in order to maintain, she still has to do 2 hours per day  most days. 

While she was on the ranch she said that she read the "Word of Wisdom" every day and she truly has come to realize that the guidance given in that section of the Doctrine and Covenants (section 89) isn't something outdated and meant for people who lived in a time before refrigeration, it is truly for us today, she encouraged everyone to read it and make it our own. Everyone can apply the principles of good health to their lives, and everyone may do it a little differently, but as long as we are truly doing our best we will be blessed.
I agree. I know that I have made changes, and I hope to stay healthy for the rest of my life. Deni and (almost) everyone else on the Biggest Loser have always been good examples to me, if they can do it, I can do it. It was nice to be able to meet her and hear how the Gospel of Jesus Christ had it's place in her weight loss journey.

One of these things is not like the others......

That's right, SOMEONE in our family wasn't born in March! And that person, my little baby B turned ONE last week. On his birthday we wrapped up a few of his presents, I caught B and J in my room a little later in the day, J was unwrapping a present. I asked "Are you unwrapping your brother's birthday presents?" J quickly answered "No, I showing baby how open presents!" 
Eventually B was allowed to open his own presents, and what were his favorites?

The SIPPY CUPS! Who knew?
On Sundays we usually have a big family dinner at my parents house, and on birthday weeks we also have cake, ice cream and presents. I like birthdays and I am enjoying making birthday cakes for kids. For Baby B I decided to make a Panda Cake- similar to the lion cake for J, only with Oreo ears and eyes, I crushed up Oreo's to use around the side and to make the nose and mouth (because I couldn't find black frosting at the store- weird)
Baby B got to watch as I made his cake.
I think it turned out pretty cute, especially if you consider that I had no instructions.
On of my nieces got really sick, so family dinner and thus the birthday party was cancelled, but we made due. Cousin A and her parents Steve and Melissa came over to our house, we had a couple of presents and then ate our Panda Cake! B was pretty excited.
See, he squealed!
We gave him his very own piece ( I didn't want to make a separate cake for to destroy- I'm still kind of tired and lazy form being sick) He went to town and devoured his cake, frosting first.
Here he is, worshiping his cake.
Seriously, could he be cuter?
Lots of cake made it into his mouth, but lots of cake was also rubbed all over his body. He made the very best of his very first cake experience. He even had some in the hair on the back of his head.
So we will call this Practice, and maybe next Sunday my sister Carrie will make him another cake and he can show off his new found cake eating skills for the rest of the family.

Happy Birthday to my sweet Baby B, I love you so much. His doctors appointment is coming up this Friday, so stay tuned for Stats and other fun facts about B.

Trains! Light Rail that is....

Last Wednesday I took J and B into West Jordan and we rode the newest Trax line in the county, the Mid Jordan line, with Grandma Turner and Cousin CJ and Q. It was lots of fun, we had Lunch at the end of the line, we discovered that some of the train exits are not good for strollers, while others have special ramps... unfortunately we discovered this the hard way, no one was injured during our discovery process.

I am always amazed how excited I tend to look in pictures. I wonder if there is a "How to look casual in Pictures" class that I should take. Don't you love B's foot?
Here is my J, enjoying the view.
J, CJ, and Q. CJ wasn't too sure that he felt safe sitting with the two older boys.
I think Q took this picture for us.
When we got to the end of the line we also discovered Where the Sidewalk Ends! Grandma made the discovery actually. Since I have always loved the book I figured I would get a picture of the actual location. J, having never read the book, didn't understand the need for excitement.
At the West Jordan City Center stop we visited with some Firemen. J likes Firemen, and Yes, he did ask "where Fireman Sam?"
We had fun on the Mid Jordan line, and it only cost us a can of food to ride!

Oakley Dokley!

The last weekend in July we took a short trip up to Oakley Idaho to visit our friends Ben and Kristen!
When I started to pack the car J decided that he needed to help. This is a picture of the second time I found his "Cars" in my car. Well to be truthful, we took Ken's car....It is pretty much the same as mine, only it is white and doesn't have huge crack in the windshield.
I decided that since I was moving car seats around, and since B would turn 1 within a week of our trip AND because B is bigger than several 2 year old's we know, I would let B sit forward facing! He wholeheartedly approved of my decision!

We arrived safely in Oakley on Thursday night, and on Friday we went sightseeing. First we went to Oakley Reservoir  While there we attempted to skip rocks....

....and Ken attempted to skip babies. (no babies were harmed, but there were plenty of baby giggles)
Next we went to the "City of Rocks" . I've been interested in the City of Rocks for years, not because I knew what it was, but because there were signs for it along I-84 and it was an interesting name. Now I know what it is! Apparently, according to what I found when I googled "City of Rocks" this is a location along the Oregon Trail. It has huge Granite Rock Formations- some of them Millions of years old others more like 2.5 BILLION YEARS OLD! I decided that I would like to come back to the City of Rocks and spend more time, maybe even camp for a couple of days. As it was we took a very very short hike.
See, here is J climbing around on a huge chunk of granite!
And here is a picture of B and Me!
And Ken and Ben! They were college roommates years ago, I think they look like they could still be in College. And check out that terrain- I really think I could hike around in there for hours and have lots of fun.

B enjoyed his hike too, why wouldn't he, he got to be right by his mommies heart, and he was shaded the whole time!
There was one thing I really wanted to see in the City of Rocks, one of the "Registration Rocks" apparently Pioneers along the Oregon Trail took to writing their names in axle grease on some of the rocks when they came through this area. Ben and Kristen found this rock for us to look at. See John Galliher at the bottom, he wrote his name in 1880!
By this point, baby B was kind of tired of being in the car. That is, until I handed him a BOOK! This kid loves books, he really acts like he is reading, opens the book, looks for a while, turns the page, looks.... I love it.
Our next stop was Lake Cleveland- it is a beautiful lake near the top of a mountain. We had a picnic lunch there, I don't know if J just wanted to be alone, but about half way through lunch he took his food under the table. He is a cute, silly boy, I am glad he is mine.
This picture is here for two reasons, the first- because Ken and B are so cute, the second- because you can see the scenery- it seriously was an amazingly beautiful location.
Two of Ben and Kristen's older boys noticed that there were some patches of snow, Ben found a way to get to one of them.....
...and they brought back a snowball....a dirty snowball that all the kids got to hold. Did I mention it was the 29th of July?
And what do you do with a dirty snowball that 5 or 6 people have just handled? Well you put it in the shade and then lick it.....several times....well, at least that is what you do if you are little J.
And here are our guests at our final stop of the day, the top of Mount Harrison. From here you could see their house, which I think is pretty awesome. Thanks Ben, Kristen and kids for letting us come visit and taking us sightseeing!
At some point during our sightseeing adventure we asked J if he was enjoying our trip to Oakley, he said "Oakley Dokley!" and I told Ken "That's the name of the Blog Post!" and look- it is!

A random bit of kid cuteness...what do you do if your foot gets stuck between some crib slats while you are sleeping? Well you just cross your other leg over the stuck leg and continue to sleep of course. If only I could sleep like a baby! I am amazed at some of the positions they can get themselves into.....and still sleep.
Can you see the hives? For lunch on Saturday we had bow tie carbonara. It was delicious. I even cut up some pieces and B enjoyed them very much. In fact he enjoyed them so much that I was going to give him more, I tossed a few more bow tie pasta pieces onto the tray of the highchair and before I could cut them into smaller pieces he picked them up and rubbed them all over his face.......yeah, I don't know what rubbing food on your face feels like but B seemed to enjoy it, that is until he broke out in hives, then he didn't like it too much. Never fear- he was washed and given benadryl
So after lunch we packed up the car and headed home. Little J liked traveling so much that he packed up a duffel bag with all his stuffed animals and then climbed into it himself.....I was tempted to send him to Abu Dhabi, but I didn't. I decided to keep him. He is a pretty fun kid after-all, and I wold miss him.
And, a little side note about my health.....On the first night of our trip, as we were going to bed I started to get a sore throat. Friday morning I still had it, but I drank lots of orange juice and took some pain killers and made it through the day just fine, by that night (Friday) I had a I took some more fever reducing pain killers and tried to sleep well. Saturday morning I ran 8 miles (I was hoping it would help to break the fever, and it kind of did for a while) and by the time we got home that evening I felt like Death, or at least what I think it would feel like to be Death. I took my temp- it was about 102. (it was 101.7, then went up to 102.3). I went to bed early and slept late, the next day I went to the doctor and was diagnosed with Strep. After 24 hours of Antibiotics I felt pretty good, tired but the pine cone in my throat was gone. I had about 36 hours of not feeling sick and KABOOM! the whole family got a cold! Lucky Us!

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