Being a mum is probably the most accomplished thing I will ever do.  It’s not all rainbows and unicorns – it’s trial and error and tears and snot (much of it mine).  
But it’s so, so good.  We learn, we grow, we fail, we try again.  Then you start to see the integrity, the joy, the hope, the willingness to step out on their own… the stuff you’ve worked so hard to support.
12 years ago I became a mum to this boy.  The 9 months preceding his arrival were easy – I had no complications and enjoyed every week.  I ran and exercised until the very last week and had a easy time getting him here.  
He is the best son you could ever hope for.  He is kind, he is mellow.  He is witty and has so much going on inside his brain that I often stare in awe.  He loves video games and soccer and hanging out with his friends.  He was so desperate for a phone but barely touches it – we haven’t hit the crazy texting stage (yet).  
He is one of a kind.  He is ours.  And we love him to the moon and back.
SugarMama in Holly Springs makes all of our cakes now – this surely tops the list in terms of creativity and detail!  She 100% matched his i touch!

Prior to cake – I took this rowdy lot for a birthday run – soccer training was cancelled due to wet fields, but we got some exercise in anyway.  They about killed me, for the record – they are bloody fast kids!  Those cutie pie girls are tough as nails and hung with them the whole way!

When he first saw his cake…  
Ooohhing and awwing over the details… 
Happy Birthday Mattie!!


It’s 7:51 AM on the day before my forty-first birthday.  The house is quiet because all three kids are still asleep and Ken took Lexie to camp.  I had a great run this morning in temps that were below 20 degrees with a friend that never fails to show up and run when I need it most.

We have just come through one of the most difficult weeks with childhood sickness that I can recall.  The good news is that we are through it – the crazy high fevers, x-rays, blood cultures, spinal taps, fears of meningitis or worse – trips to the ER one, two, three times… A neurologist   Blood patches.  Cleaning so much puke out of cars I never want to smell puke again.  Not puke from tummy bugs or viruses, but puke from a child being in so much pain it made him physically ill.

I sit enjoying a coffee in the quiet of the morning… lost in the processing of everything last week handed us and yet realizing we are so lucky it was just a week of crazy… until the sounds of tiny feet sneaking down the back stairs bring be back to the beauty and amazing-ness that this family and these kids and this life – is to me.


These Days…

I am not doing a very good job of posting here.  More of the I don’t know what to say while I am sitting here in front of the screen!

Work is insane busy.  All the stuff I have been working on since last June is at implementation phase now so it’s hand holding and phone answering chaos.  Good though!

Kids are great – soccer, school, Amelia started swimming.  Ainsley is starting guitar lessons as soon as I get a few minutes to call and set up her first lesson.  We decided to head to Florida for a week next month and I am anxious for that.  Booked our beach house for July… Canada in June… lots to look forward to.

Running has been very intermittent and inconsistent.  I need it to get warm out so I can RIDE MY BIKE!

Some low key projects going on at home – painting, one last ceiling to scrape and then maybe update the kids bathroom.  We need a new mattress set so bad – I am a cripple in the mornings so we have to solve this issue soon.  Problem is we’re at opposite ends of the spectrum on what we like/need in terms of comfort – I know, I know you are going to say “Get a Sleep Number Bed!” but I’ve honestly only heard horror stories about mold in the baffles which freaks me OUT so we can’t go there.  We’ll hopefully get out this weekend to see what’s on the market that is reasonable in terms of price but also comfortable!

We had Amelia’s birthday a couple of weeks ago – Dad and Lorraine came up from Florida for 5 days to help celebrate which was terrific fun.

I do find that the starting of a new year, any year – seems to bring with it lots of reflection and pondering on where we are in life, what we’ve done, the direction we are headed.  Sort of a “take stock” kind of time.  Checking in with ourselves… For me it seems to quiet my mind a bit which I like.  There have been ups and downs these first 6 weeks of 2013 – some very unexpected illnesses in great friends and friends of great friends – crazy situations out of NOWHERE.  Things like this make me sad and anxious – and also very grateful for the “mundane” or day in day out routine that sometimes I whine about wanting to get out of.  I guess the saying of be careful what you wish for could never be truer.

We are anxious to hear news of MTB’s recent CAP RAST #’s – will post those when we get word!

Dr. Oz…

I don’t routinely watch Dr. Oz.  I know who he is, and his personality/style is not really my cup of tea – but a few friends were doing this detox starting on Jan 1 for 3 days so I hopped on the bandwagon to see if I could do it.
It was a moderate success.
This is the program.  Basically pureed food for 3 days with some vitamin support and detox bathing at the end of the day.  Let’s just say the bath part by FAR was the best ingredient in this 3 day exercise.
Breakfast was not too bad actually.  Fruit, spinach, water (I actually used the coco water because that stuff is awesome!) and almond butter.  These were no problem to drink.

THIS WAS AWFUL.  I MEAN AWFUL AWFUL AWFUL.  Jenna got smart and just laid out all the ingredients called for in the lunch drink and ate them on the 2nd day.  I tried it in juiced version twice before giving in and going with just eat it all individually.  This is perhaps the most disgusting drink I have ever had to chug.
Dinner (no pics, woops) was pretty good again minus the cayenne.  I didn’t follow the program to the tee which is probably why I came unglued on Day 2 at supper time and had to eat some real food… there really is no way to make the drink at work, so I wasn’t doing the snack drinks that they called for.  Massive calorie deficiency already with just the ingredients he uses – so skipping drinks is less than ideal.  
I lost just over 3 lbs (pure water, which I guess is what it’s designed to do a bit).  Being vegetarian going into this probably meant there was a bit less cleansing to do.  But – I have held steady in the week and a half since it ended so that’s good.  Nice little holiday recovery.  🙂
I think there are probably more enjoyable and cheaper options out there (this was definitely not on the cheap side ingredients wise) and I will likely spend some time researching.  Here and there – this really made me feel good, like nipped in and way less bloat.  My pants were hanging off by the 3rd morning just from purging salt out I think!  
The downside?  I was pretty lethargic.  No energy to run.  This past week I just ate pretty normal but ran 4 days and feel way better.  So – cleansing once in a while might have some benefit – but not long term.  Not for this mama anyway!

2012 Mileage

So – this is almost opposite trend wise as 2011.  Maybe 2013 will be the year that consistency arrives??  I just keep putting one foot in front of the other!  I also need to factor in that this is just running – my cycling mileage is not tracked here.

In early February I ran just over 16 miles.  All at one time, on the Tobacco Trail in Cary/Durham.  Clearly the most profound fitness accomplishment for me in my whole life.

2012 had some highlights.  I ran my fastest half on my 40th birthday in February.  In my lucky hat from my friend Joe and new running jacket from the kids.  It was cold and rainy and miserable but glorious!

By spring I was burned out and bored and the miles started to fall off.  In July though, I helped pull together a little running group right close to my house and we all got back into it.  The distances were mostly shorter on average but way more consistent.  That group spurred my friend Todd to start running after quitting smoking – and last week Todd ran his first ever half!  I am proud of him!!  The group fell apart a bit with some crazy work schedules and two knee injuries.
Point of that being I do much better when there is a group waiting for me to run…Second point being that if you want to run in a group I am your girl.
Trish started running too – another virtual-turned-real friend that I love to hang out and run with!  She has some big goals for this year and I will be there to support her!  
Elizabeth fell off the running wagon – but she wants to start again so I can see our group re-kindling and hopefully pulling together to get everyone in the same direction as this new year kicks off.  I will be loosey-goosey with my goals this year and just hope to do better than 2012 while not setting the bar too high.

Christmas and New Years Catch Up

This was the scene a very few minutes before the children woke up and complete, total CHAOS ensued.  For like 8 days!   We had a houseful this year and it was awesome!  Great to share holidays with those you love and the kids had a great time catching up and reconnecting.
We had an awesome dinner of turkey and ham, potatoes, celery root puree, brocoli au gratin, gravy, buns, dessert!  Wine!  BUTTER.
Ahem.  The Vegan went Ve-GONE for about 8 days.  Currently in detox (literally) and back on the wagon now…
As is becoming the “norm” – we headed to the NC Mountains for New Years.  First time we checked out Lake Lure area – definitely nice, but totally different than Boone or Blowing Rock.  The weather was great and the house very nice.  We all had a good time!
Sunset over the Chimney Rock stretch of mountains.  
New Years Eve day, 2012.  Ainsley, Matthew and Amelia.

CB and Amelia traipsing through the stream.  The house we rented had a winding stream beside it and came fully stocked with rubber boots in nearly every size – so this was an epic Play Thing for the kids.  Thank heavens it was warm because they were soaked up to their eyeballs!



Group shot.

SOAKED.  But happy!

While in Asheville we came across a street that had MY name!  My friend Ann “famously” takes pictures almost every year of her children standing up against street signs that share their names when she comes across them – never in a million years did I think I’d find a “Sayles” Road!!  My dad was tickled when I sent this to him!
During the break I read both Wild and Tiny Beautiful Things – both by Cheryl Strayed who now I want to meet and have coffee with.  These two books have stuck with me – especially Tiny – just such wonderful messages and great perspective.  Both also rec’d by LauraC… So this year, one of a trend/pattern/trait that I am going to work on improving is GRACE.  
I KNOW that I am rough sometimes around the edges.  I totally over-react, over-analyze, over-interpret and over-judge.  Grace is about elegance and refinement.  It’s about honour.  When I do or say things without thinking all the way through, it is not elegant.  Or honourable.  
Happy and peaceful 2013 everyone.  Peace and GRACE to you all!

Somehow These Grew Within Me…

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