Minnesota Trip

Two weeks before Christmas, the boys and I flew to Minnesota to surprise my family. All of my brothers and sisters were going to be in the same place at the same time – that’s an event that I couldn’t miss!

Jackson looks a little nervous, but I swear he was excited.

Both boys were amazed at the frost covering the windows inside our rental car. They were even more amazed when I showed them how to make a fake footprint and happily began to cover the back windows. I’m sure whoever got to clean that car appreciated all of the greasy hand prints.I took them through the Burger Time drive thru and they both fell in love. Jackson told everyone he met about Burger Time and how much he loved it.

After a quick stop at Target for presents and the all-important Five Nights at Freddie’s plushies, we checked into our hotel and then went over to my mom’s. It was so much fun to surprise everyone! Rachel was speechless, and that is a feat in itself ;).

One of my cousins was getting married so we drove across the border to ND for the wedding and to see my Grandma. Isn’t she the cutest? I wanted to cry when I saw her. She is the sweetest, kindest, person that I know.And we got to see my aunt, who let me watch Cinderella as much as I wanted, ride ponies, play with dogs, and chase fainting goats when I was a kid.

The next morning, we went to church with my family and got to see one of my nephews sing Christmas songs (he’s hiding in the back in the green shirt). Then, back to my mom’s house for lunch and presents and the first picture with all of the grandkids. 

After presents, the boys went sledding on the same hill that I used to sled on (That’s my high school and the church Seth and I were married at behind Jackson).

I rode down one time with the boys and that was plenty for this old lady. It was cold!

It felt so “right” for all of us kids to be together with our mom; probably because we were all together non-stop when we were homeschooled. Side note: I’ve thanked my mom on more than one occasion for not drowning all of us in the bathtub. My two boys are all that I can handle – I’m not sure how she spent all day, every day with us.

I finally let the boys go to the pool after dinner on our second night and they were ecstatic. 

Pizza delivered to the room at midnight and getting to eat in bed? Living the dream.

The next morning was more swimming and my dad came over to hang out.More Five Night’s at Freddy’s. The boys weren’t excited at all……
We spent the rest our time with Seth’s grandma, Lilly who is hilarious and so much fun. She lived near us in Colorado for a while and the boys have missed her tons.Then, one last stop at Burger Time before going back to the airport and then home.Now, let’s talk about what my running looks like:

After the Fall Equinox Half in September, I took it easy through October and November with short runs 1-3 times/week, threw in some strength training, went hunting for the first time, and then decided to get serious about my fitness goals for 2017.  Garmin Connect has several types of training plans that can be customized and sent directly to my watch. I decided to do the 12 week “Improve Your Fitness” plan with the intention of training for shorter races in the spring/summer and then a fall marathon.

So far, I am loving it! Runs are dictated by time rather than distance so it really helps me to stay slow on my easy runs. If I have a specific number of miles to run, I end up running them too hard on the days that I’m time-strapped.

In addition to different types of runs of 30-40 minutes (intervals, hills, and easy) and a long run, the plan calls for different kinds of crosstraining. I’ve been living under a rock and had to google “body conditioning”. The first 20 minute YouTube workout that I found was horrible…….I thought I was going to die. My heart felt like it was going to explode and I couldn’t make it all the way through some of the sets. It became very apparent that I need to put some serious work into my overall fitness. Too bad, I only like running.

Anyhoo, I’m starting to look at races near me and will be plotting and planning out the year over the next couple of weeks…..or maybe I’ll go crazy signing up for races this weekend. Who knows!