To be the best Wife, Mom, Daughter, Sister, Friend, and Runner I can be...God willing!

Saturday, December 31, 2011

New Year's Eve...goodbye 2011

Today is the last day of 2011...I cannot believe that!  It has been a crazy fun filled year of many exciting adventures!

We laughed, cried, loved, screamed, and loved some more.

We visited family and friends in North Carolina, Ohio, Maryland, Pennsylvania, Vermont, and Virginia.  We traveled through multiple other states on our adventures.

We watched Emma and Jonah turn into gymnasts and begin competitions.

We watched Elena learn to walk, run, and talk.

Samuel was potty trained, became Drew's "mini me", and grew up so much it is a little scary!

Jonah began Kindergarten and Emma started 3rd grade.

We transformed our house and now have a brand new beautiful family room.

I ran 1576.6 miles!

Drew biked far and long until he injured his hand.

We tried to make Jesus central to our lives each and every day!

Drew and I hung on for the ride that we take every day with our sweet Emma, Elena, Jonah, and Samuel. 

Who know what 2012 holds for us, but I know it will be exciting!!
Emma with her super big sparkler!
Jonah and his sparkler!
Elena stomping on her poppers!
Samuel a little nervous with his huge sparkler!
 Farewell 2011....Happy New Year 2012!!!!

One Last Christmas picture

We had Christmas with Grammy and Grandpa yesterday and we got these two gems.  I love the picture of the kids.  Everyone is waiting patiently and Elena is digging into her stocking...priceless!

Until next year.....

We went hunting

Yes, you read the title correctly.  We went hunting the day after Christmas.  Well, actually the boys went hunting and the girls tagged along.

In November, Drew went on a work/hunting trip and shot a buffalo.  Apparently he now enjoys to hunt and decided we should all go after Christmas.
Sorry it is so small, but yes that is a huge buffalo!
We drove 5.5 hours to Crystal City in South Texas.  It is probably one of the ugliest places I have ever visited with the exception of the sunsets.  They were pretty.
We went to the ADL7 Ranch which is home to some known animals like whitetail deer and many exotic animals like Oryx.  As soon as we entered the property we saw a zebra!  The Ranch house is lovely, huge, and very comfortable.  The meals are provided (awesome!).  The rooms are huge and very nice.  There are fun amenities like pool tables.  I read a book...yes an entire book.  The trip was relaxing for me.

The kids (except Elena) toured the Ranch and saw some fun animals.  The kids loved it because the could ride on the top of the truck (see below).  On Tuesday morning a buffalo whose name is Chief was hanging out by the front door.  It was crazy close and he did not seem to mind we were there.  There was another animal that did that outback and his name is Grandpa.  The kids actually fed him corn.
Zoomed, but not that much.  Chief was really close to the house!
That is close and they loved it!
Emma and her friends Aimee and Anna in the truck.

Elena loved all the animals.  She learned to say buffalo and elk.  She still likes saying these words.  The inside is filled with "stuffed" animals and she was in awe of them.
He greeted you as you walked in the front door. He made Elena a little nervous.

Just what every Christmas tree needs!
Elena loved the buffalo!
On Tuesday late afternoon the boys and Drew went hunting for pig.  The boys did great in the blind by listening and being very quiet.  Drew did not get anything.

Drew went out again Wednesday morning and he had much better luck.  He shot an 8 point buck!
Again sorry so small.
Gross!  Drew's 8 point buck!
They boys loved all the hunting and what happens after a hunt.  The liked watching the animals be "cleaned" so to speak.  Gross!  They must have watched that happen to several animals three or four times during our stay.

Jonah was excited to shoot a gun at the gun range.  He was in shock after it happened, but said he liked it!
Shooting range
Getting ready to take a shot.
Now, our freezer will be filled with buffalo and venison.  We have no room left for anything else!  It was the strangest "vacation" ever, but filled with lots of memories for the kids and that made it all worth it!

Thursday, December 29, 2011

My runner girl

One of the things I really wanted to do during Christmas break was to run at night with Emma.  I thought it would be so much fun to look at the Christmas lights, chat with her, and run with my daughter.  Tonight was the night and it was a total gift to me.  We ran for 1.2 miles and had the best time!

Getting ready to head out for our a few years Elena!
I am so thankful that Emma enjoys her running club and was happy to go running with me!!!!

MT: Recap Week Six

Six weeks of marathon training is in the books!  In ten weeks I will standing at the starting line (well way back in a corral but still!) getting ready to run 26.2!  WOW!!!

I ran 41.2 miles, which is my highest mileage week since training began in November.

The weather was awful most of the week.  I moved some runs around because of the rain and Christmas.  Running 15 miles on Christmas morning did not appeal to me!  I also felt horrible most of the week with lots of head and chest congestion.  That alone made each run harder than it needed to be!

My speedwork run was done on the treadmill.  It was raining and I had a late start so the TM it was.  It was actually better than I expected it to be.  It was also easy in that I set the pace at 8:13 and just ran.  My long run of 15 miles was fun.  I was not looking forward to it because of the weather, but it went well.  I loved looking at all the lawn's decorated for Christmas.  I ran through seven subdivisions, crossed over Louetta and Spring Cypress twice, and ran 1.5 miles on the Klein Collins HS track.  The variety kept it interesting!

My hip and foot hurt some after my long run, but the pain/discomfort is not any worse.  I think my foot may be slightly better...yeah!!

Bring it week 7!

The Gingerbread Houses

On Christmas Eve we built our Gingerbread Village.  I bought the kits at Target because I don't like gingerbread so I don't think I should have to bake it.  The kits are perfect and the kids had lots and lots of fun with them.

Drew assembled the village and the kids decorated it. 

Emma had so much fun helping Elena, but....
Elena quickly figured out what she was doing!  She ate as much as she put on her house.
Jonah was very serious about his creativity!

Tonight after days of begging to eat it, I let them have it for dessert.  They were so happy!

So proud of their creations!
The village before the cute!

I hope to make this a Christmas Eve afternoon tradition.  It was a very fun family activity!

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The pull up bar

Who know a pull up bar would be so much fun for everyone!  Jonah spends the most time on it and most of that time is spent upside down (shock to anyone who knows him!).  Emma loves to do her bar conditioning on it.  Samuel and Elena need some assistance, but they like it as well.  I eeked out two pull-ups much to everyone's surprise!

So far we have had only one big injury and it was Jonah...again no surprise.  He fell off the bar and landed on a step stool.  His back was achy the next day.  Now they put a beanbag under the bar so soften the fall.  I am just waiting for the day when it pops!

She makes it look easy!
Getting some guidance from Daddy
Practicing her pull-ups
He loves it!

Monday, December 26, 2011

Christmas Day in pictures

We had a wonderful Christmas Day.  The kiddos (except for Elena) woke a little after 7am and they let Drew and I sleep until 8am.  That was definitely a present to mommy and daddy!   We finished making breakfast, read our last Jesse Tree devotion and the Christmas story in Luke, opened our presents from Kelsey and Scott, and Elena was still sleeping.  We finally woke her a little after 9am and got the day rolling.

Our day was filled with eating, opening presents, ohh's and ahh's, laughter, tears, phone calls, skyping and so much fun!
Santa came!
Our tree before the madness began

Santa gave Emma Monopoly
Elena could not stop walking for even a second in her new Elmo slippers.  Thanks Aunt Kelsey

Jonah loving his new Nerf laser gun from Santa. 

Samuel got one too!  Thanks Santa!!

Elena playing with her baby accessories from Santa
Christmas Breakfast
Opening their Matchbox race tracks
Loving her Aqua doodle
Emma and Jonah love it too!
Paper Jams guitar concert
What is this?
A pull up bar....YES!
This is all too much...I can't take it says Samuel!
Samuel recovered quickly and loved his new aircraft carrier!
Opening their new Match Box car race tracks
A homemade eggnog break...notice some mustaches!

Yuengling barely survived and needed cuddle time with her daddy!
The pillow pets were loved immediately!
The aftermath
Lots of wrapping paper
We ended our day by lighting our Advent Wreath

We hope your day was as much fun as ours!  Merry Christmas!