Oh dear, I know it's been a while! I'm worried that life won't slow down til I die. Hmmmm....
Many updates to fill you in on. First and foremost- I ran my half marathon!!! Well, to say I ran might be an overstatement. I finished it. My final time was 2:38. Yes, that's hours! I'm not at all ashamed of that time. I was just striving for completion. To be honest, my actual goal was to do it in under three hours.
The best part of the whole thing is that Hubby stayed with me throughout the marathon! Well, at mile 10, he couldn't take my slow pace any longer. He ran ahead and I lost sight of him for a while. When I rounded the corner onto the final street, I saw him up ahead on the side of the road, jumping in place and waiting for me. What a prince! With his long legs and athletic form, he could have easily finished in under two hours. But it was more important for him to cross the finish line with me! The emotion of it actually overcame me and I began sobbing for the last block. I could see the end in sight and we were about to enter a stadium full of cheering people. Have you ever tried to cry while totally exhausted? It's not easy. It comes out as more of a gasp, like a dying patient taking their last breath. I got myself under control and was smiling in my final photos (which they watermark with a moving logo so you can't share it at all). My legs were complete and total jelly when I finished and it was very difficult to stand still. (You should have seen me trying to use the porta potty...I kept crashing into the disgusting side walls like an intoxicated person!)
The worst part of the story is that I got sick almost immediately after. I had a sore throat the entire day before. Then I guess because I wore myself down, I became victim to the attack of all sickie bugs. I got a horrible cold and a UTI. I'm just now starting to get some relief from that.
BUT- I have my silver medal and my 13.1 shirt. I'm one very proud mama. And if you're wondering....no, I'll never do it again. It's a bucket list thing and I'm very proud to cross it off.
My second greatest accomplishment since you've last heard from me is that I lost 15 lbs! I'm so much happier with my current state and feel like I look pretty darn good. No, I'm nowhere close to looking like those models in the magazines, but for a 37-year old mama of 4....I think I look quite good (not in a haughty, bragging way, of course). I'll share more later about how I did that.
Baby Girl celebrated her 5th birthday, which blows my mind. She's not a baby any more and I'm going to have to stop referring to her as one. We celebrated at Chuck E. Cheese at a joint party with her twin cousin. They had a great time and I've yet to send out thank you notes. Ugh! She always says she's a monkey and requested a monkey cake. I was relived because it was much easier to design than other things she's asked for in the past!
The kids are back in school and are doing great. Our district has a new online progress system that is extremely easy to use. Son #2, who is so very smart with no self-motivation, is doing better than ever. We check his grades and assignments every day and then Hubby or myself helps him study for any tests. He currently has one B and the rest are all As and A minuses. When I know what my kids are capable of, I can't help but demand it.
Hubby has made a big change at work. Instead of working the inhumane hours he's been accustomed to (leaving before 5 AM and getting home between 6 & 7, or even later during peak season), he's sold his route and truck to the guy who helped him get hired almost 20 years ago. This guy has been almost like a father to him. Hubby works directly for him now and does half the work he did before. He is still leaving early, but after 5 AM. He gets home most days around 1 PM. You guys don't understand the difference in his life. He now has time to do small projects around the house and to be a father and husband to the kids and me. Yes, his pay went down, but the quality of life he now has is beyond explanation. He is trying to supplement his lost income by mowing apartment buildings (which he was doing anyhow in his "spare" time). Come winter time, he might try to get into plowing. He is also getting a lot more tile cleaning jobs (his other side business) and my photo booth is taking off. We're going to be OK. We won't be moving into a mansion anytime soon, but we're OK with that.
Other than those major things, it's just the same old, same old, and some new.
- I'm still doing my teenage girls club at church.
- Son #1 auditioned for, and again was accepted into, the philharmonic orchestra in our area.
- My running buddy got engaged to my "fake" cousin and asked me to be a bridesmaid. :)
- Some very, very close friends of ours separated due to infidelity and addiction. It was heartbreaking. :(
- I still have a messy house most of the time and I'm still saving money couponing. (Last week, I got all these groceries for $35! It was my best haul yet!!!)
- My cousin was ordained as pastor of our church over the weekend and my uncle is now the bishop. It was an exciting weekend and I was able to see a lot of great friends from time past.
- I went to New York City, which was amazing! (I'll save that for another post.)
- I finished the kids' rooms and realize I still haven't posted Before/After photos.
- I'm still struggling with a mouthy teenager and trying hard to be a firm, consistent mother.
- Son #2 entered the youth group at church, which means he's growing up too. He seems a lot younger than his brother and I still struggle allowing him to go on outings without me.
- My friend, the designer, finally came over and spruced up my house a bit. The changes she made make me so happy about how my house looks. I need her to come over one more time and fancy up one more room. It's amazing what she can do with very little!
- I'm still taking portraits and even had my first still life photo shoot. I've never worked with non-humans before and I was out of my element. My client was very happy with my work, which will be displayed on the website of her brand new business.
- I redid my photo booth website, which is amazing, I must say. Exercising my design skills has made me improve so much. I'm really digging graphic design now.
OK, there's lots more, but that's quite enough for now. That's what happens when a blogger neglects her blog for so long. I can't make promises that I'll do better. It's just tough to find the time. I know all you busy ladies know exactly what I mean. If you've stuck around- thanks. I still appreciate you and feel bad I've dropped the ball. All I can say is I'll blog when I can! Such is life! Hope you're all having a very good one!