Saturday, February 2, 2019

Working from home is amazing + the POLAR VORTEX came to Minnesota + to run faster, just run faster.

Yes I know I have not posted since last Saturday.  Yikes, we have some catching up to do.  


But first things first.

I got to work from home THREE days this week.  It was amazing.  My work typically only allows us one day per week, but the polar vortex decided to hang out in Minnesota for a while and some exceptions were made(hooray!). This means that our temps for the week were...
Sat: high of 10, low of -10
Sun: high of 4, low of -14
Mon: high of 14, low of -3 (plus we got snow - so it was a snow day)
Tues: high of -3, low of -26
Wed: high of -14, low of -29!
Thurs: high of -3, low of -29!
Fri: high of 18, low of -3

Reasons I loved working from home so much this week:
1. I got to hang around near the kiddos.  They were playing with my dad all day, but I got to hear Max's giggles and Eleanor chatting while I worked.  Plus I got to take breaks here and there to quick help out with things.
2. MORE work was accomplished.  No commute = I worked during my normal commute time = I worked more hours.  Also, less distractions at home.
3. I could actually think about supper based on things that were already in my home. At work if I try to think of a supper idea, I have NO clue what is in my fridge/cupboards.  Therefore I end up buying something over lunchtime, or declaring a cereal night.  Also, if I had something in the crockpot, I could stir it a couple times during the day.
4. Home comfort = snacks, coffee, blankets, comfy clothes & I don't have to shower unless I really want to. LOVE IT.

Okay now for a quick weekly recap with some pictures:
Eleanor and Max and I hung out as always on Saturday morning, until my Dad stopped over to join. They even helped me stuff some pocket(cloth) diapers after our morning workout & shower routine.



Miss Eleanor spent the first few days of the week getting rid of a nasty cough.

Max has a new-ish little buddy: it’s a snowman.  He got this snowman as a little Christmas gift from school.


Is this a nice rug?  I'm thinking entry way, but I have a terrible sense of style. Funny since I used to want to do interior design when I was like in middle school...


Sunday morning we got all dressed up (relatively) & went to church:


Then we decided to be super ambitious since it was too cold to really go anywhere.  We baked fresh bread! I had some great helpers.


My Sunday lunch was this pretty little salad. Plus like six other random things.


Max read Eleanor a book in the afternoon.


And Sunday's workout was in the evening...did part of a workout video (21 Day Fix Extreme Cardio).  And then ran 2 miles at 8:22 avg pace.  It's pretty exciting for me that I am getting faster.  I want to increase my speed to 8 flat and then work on lengthening the distance.  I bet the lengthening part is going to be the hard part.  Hello, speedwork time!  They (the experts?) say that in order to run fast, the best thing to do, is just run faster.   I think what they mean, is to practice the fast even in small increments - and it will start to help your speed overall.  Also, I LOVE having a treadmill.  I should probably check if it needs some maintenance...


The remainder of the week, my dad came over to hang out quite a bit (Mon, Wed, and Thurs).  I am SOOOO grateful that my parents live nearby and my dad is now retired.  I think he had a little fun with them too, but it was so nice to be able to have him drive the 10 minutes to our house, and play with Max and Eleanor while we worked.


Here is proof that of the temperatures this week.  Tuesday at 3:44pm (leaving work):


And Tuesday at 4:53pm(pulling into the driveway):


We have an official curtain in our workout room!  I know the neighbors will be bummed they can no longer watch our super exciting workouts.  Or the real reason is, Jason will not be paranoid about this fact.  It's not a real curtain, but it will do for now!


Eleanor joined me for Pilates Extreme on Wednesday.  She was a great buddy.


More proof of the temp, because it is just that exciting:


Eleanor can bounce a bit with a little help from some blocks underneath:


Jason is the crazy man who went for a walk on Wednesday evening.


Thursday morning the kiddos didn't get out of jammies until RIGHT before I had to start working.  They both got to sleep in a little bit this week too.  Side note: this is my bed on Eleanor's floor.


Eleanor being absolutely adorable on Friday at school:


And the grand finale is: the week's meal plan!!!  Whew, what a week:
Saturday:
lunch: soup/leftovers/cereal
evening: waffles, Almond Butter, bananas, berries +bacon?
Sunday:
brunch: fresh pineapple, wafflefries, oven chicken & "chicken"
evening: guacamole:toms,onion,avos,cilantro+southwest salad, chips

Monday-salads & veggie burgers,quinoa
Tuesday-chicken-w-indiansauce,whiterice, mini naan
Wednesday-soup: celery,onion,carrots,parm,ham,escarole,beans,pasta
Thursday-cereal and/or frozen pizza night
Friday-matzo soup & salad

Friday, January 25, 2019

Friday fun and Meal Planning Night

Thursday flew by and all of a sudden it's Friday!  After work on Thursday we had all sorts of fun racing around downstairs.


And making silly faces..


Max is thoroughly enjoying school.  
Especially when they have new farm books!


Sometimes I pretend I thoroughly enjoy work too!  Or maybe I am just excited there were cookies at work (for someone’s birthday)?!


Eleanor says check out her pretty new outfit (it has deer and penguins and whales!) and Max would like to share his blueberries with you...


I was just RELIEVED when they went to bed somewhat nicely and I had some time to start my meal planning / grocery shopping list for Saturday morning.  Jason has been at a work training thing late for the last few days, so we have not seen much of him.  We are looking forward to having him back on Sunday.


Here's the plan!
Saturday:
lunch: at my Mom & Dad's
evening: toaster waffles, Almond Butter and bananas
Sunday
brunch: popcorn, peppers, apples & sunbutter
evening: crockpot pork, mafalda pasta, & fresh bread
Monday-mixed greens salad w/veggie burgers
Tuesday-chicken-black bean taco salads + avocado
Wednesday-green beans, sweet potato fries, tofu & peanut sauce
Thursday-cereal night
Friday-pizza night

Happy Friday to all and to all a good night!

Saturday, January 19, 2019

Standard Saturday - The Ongoing Race Decision - Our Date Attempt

The sick kiddo was not so sick this morning, so we proceeded with a pretty standard Saturday.  I managed to get in a workout this morning - I nearly skipped because I was so tired from a night of Eleanor wake-ups, but decided it would make me feel better if I even just ran a little 1/2 mile.  1/2 mile turned into 2 miles at 8:50 pace average.  Max got to watch a tractor video & Eleanor was entertained by her little rainbow gym.

I am leaning more and more towards doing a half marathon this spring.  A few reasons...
1.I really want to up my speed.  For me, running is a little more enjoyable when I can hit a 8:00/8:30 pace (I don't have much experience going faster) and be comfortable there.
2.Training is much less demanding than a full.  When I started training for a full with Max, he was like 6 months old and it was so tough to find time to run with him.  I learned I can't cheat the week-day runs - my marathon was extremely slow.
3.A half tends to be cheaper than a full.  Plus then I am not obligated to stay up at Grandma's, so could easily just make a day of it instead (it's tradition to go..).
4.There's a great race in Minneapolis at the end of April, that I have actually done before.  Meaning I know I like it.:)  It's called Get in Gear and it runs along the river parkways.
Should I do it?!?

Eleanor is 4 months today - hooray!  We took her to the Home Expo to celebrate.  Actually, she went with me to Aldi and Target first.


The Home Expo was just something Jason and I thought it would be fun to go do - and since Eleanor is 4 months old, she gets to tagalong.  It was a little underwhelming.  There were not that many vendors, and the ones that were there, were not anything we were interested in. Except for maybe the fireplaces and the decks.

Then she took a nap with Jason afterward.


And finally, all 3 got on the couch for a photo op.


Friday, January 18, 2019

Sick DAY and Friday night foodie planning

It's the first sick day from the new daycare!  I think that was pretty good - we made it nearly TWO whole months without getting sick.  Max is feeling much better today already, so hopefully that continues and we are healthy by Monday.

It felt like the weekend since I had both kiddos home today, and my Dad even stopped by for a few hours to keep us (me) company and play a bit.  Max woke up early to keep me company with my morning workout & he decided that I needed to run in addition to my cardio workout video.  He is quite convincing, and I do like to run, so we added another mile-ish on the treadmill.

The highlight of the day was that Max saw the garbage truck AND the recycling truck pickup AND then we saw the school buses at the Elementary school across the street twice.  It was pretty amazing.


Super smiley Eleanor thought it was silly that she should take anything longer than a 20 minute nap today.


And she also wants to show you she has been working on her abs.  Seriously, the girl tries to do sit-ups all the time. 


Onto the most exciting part of my Fridays... meal planning for the upcoming week!  I actually do look forward to planning this out, if I haven't mentioned that before.  Last week was sort of a flop in terms of sticking to the plan, but we rearranged things to work (we did not run out of food or anything crazy).

Here's what I am thinking for this week... the thing we are making for Foodie Husband this week is French Onion Soup.  He's pretty pumped to try that one.  Tuesdays seem to be turning into taco night.

Saturday: brunch-grilled cheese
French Onion soup w/toasts and salad (or swap for Sunday eve)
Sunday: brunch-pizza w/pesto and roasted tomatoes
Pancakes with berries, almond butter and bananas
Monday: leftovers / spinach salad + tofu
Tuesday: chicken verde / black bean tostadas
Wednesday: baked chicken and green beans w/lemon-dijon-tahini sauce
Thursday: cereal night
Friday: leftovers / frozen pizza / salad

I ended my day the best way.. baby cuddles with my chocolate nighttime treat.



Thursday, January 17, 2019

Saying goodbye to our first home

Wednesday night we drove down to our old house since we will be closing soon.  Jason and my Dad took a load of last random stuff from our garage.  And then we all played downstairs for a little while one last time - another supper of snacks (think maybe I should make real supper tonight?).


It is a little bit sad leaving our first home.  Jason and I bought it before we even were pregnant with Max.  And now we have both Max and Eleanor - an entire little family.  We have lots of memories in that house.

A few things I will miss:
* Distance to the playground and ease of getting there via sidewalks  - two of them, actually
* Location among a bunch of walking/biking/running trails
* Little storage spots all over the house (in our new home, I'll actually have to buy smaller storage nooks)
* The backyard patio was covered with a full roof - the perfect spot to sit while it rained.
* Neighbors - SO nice!

Cheers to our new place & the new memories we'll make here!

Tuesday, January 15, 2019

Fun times being sore

Day 2 of the new strength workout and I am a little bit sore.  I can feel all of my muscles and I love it.  I am a weirdo that enjoys being sore.


Jason had a work thing so was gone again, so the kiddos and I had a fun night of snacks for supper and running around downstairs. Max even helped me fold diapers for a while.




Monday, January 14, 2019

Strength training - it's a love hate thing

I started a new little program to boost my strength.  I started with some Plyometrics and I remembered how much I love Plyo!  I definitely am a little bit out of shape to do that sort of stuff, so it is a very good thing that I will be doing these things daily.  I did a fast 1 mile on the treadmill first as a warm up.  In my head, I only want to run and these workout videos are lame.  But then when I actually do it, I really have at LEAST as much fun as a treadmill fun.  Plus, the only injuries I have ever had as a runner came from me having weak spots in my hips and/or legs.  This should totally help that. After the workout it was clear I need to do this about 421 times more before I am proficient.:)


Today I went to our old house to take care of a few things before we officially sell it.  Almost there!!

It looks like Max had a fun time at school while I was busy.