Sunday, October 30, 2016

Early Halloween + My Plan for the Week

Good Morning! 

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We had noisy visitor over for breakfast. 

How has the weekend been so far? Our’s has been mostly Halloween focused, with a little exercise and birthday party thrown in.

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Friday night Ina, my cousin, and I met my sister and her kids at a Trail or Treat. Dan and Cora stayed home so she didn’t turn into a pumpkin.

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Saturday I met Danielle for an early 3 mile run and then ran to bootcamp for an awesome circuit workout. I inhaled my breakfast when I got home and will surely appreciate the rest day today. 

I quickly called a patient and then we all cleaned up for Addy’s first birthday party where cuteness abounded. 

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After the birthday party we ran home for a little Cora nap time and a little house clean up time and soon it was time to head to my brother and sister-in-law’s church for trunk or treat. 

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We ate hot dogs, rode a train, and obtained a decent amount of candy.

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Fun was had by all. 

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Today I am focusing on rest, which means we are going to church, grocery shopping, watching football, and then hosting small group. Apple crisp may or may not be created. 

I am participating in Gina’s 7 Day Reset this week, which starts on Tuesday (eating with a focus on protein and produce while eliminating refined sugar and flour). Here is my meal plan: 

  • Sunday: Dan is smoking some meat today, so I will likely roast some veggies and bake some sweet potatoes
  • Monday: We are planning on having something we can offer our friends who stop by our house for Trick or Treating. Chili? Nacho bar? Hot dogs?
  • Tuesday: chicken fajitas
  • Wednesday: Spanish chicken and rice with roasted green beans
  • Thursday: slow cooker buffalo chicken with sweet potatoes and salad 
  • Friday: one pan herb crusted salmon and veggies
  • Saturday: piri piri chicken with coined potatoes and tomato salad 
  • Meal/snack prep: 
    • Smoothies: my new favorite afternoon snack. I throw two handfuls of spinach, 1/2 frozen banana, 1 T of almond butter, and some almond milk in the Ninja in the morning, then pour in a portable jar to take to work. 
    • The best salad with prepped chicken burgers
    • Egg and veggie bake

Have a lovely week! 

Thursday, October 27, 2016

Thankful

Good morning!

I just returned home from bootcamp wearing a party hat and holding a lovely piece of carrot cake. We celebrated a friend’s birthday and defintely “earned" the cake during our workout. 

This week has flown by and by the looks of the calendar, the rest of the week will go even faster. Today Cora has her 15 month check-up (how?) and hopefully the girls can have a little cousin play date.

This week I was thankful for:

Thursday:

  1. Papa Gordon and all the great memories we had with him.
  2. Our friends and family who came to the funeral and/or sent flowers. We are so truly blessed. 
  3. Having kids around. They are the sunshine on these sad days.

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Friday:

  1. Our sweet friend made us Chicken pot pie for dinner. Mmmm.
  2. Grandma June being able to visit and help with Cora. So cute. 
  3. Dan having a job that is flexible enough to take Ina to work. 

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Saturday:

  1. Getting out of Target with exactly what I planned to buy when I walked in the store. Victory.
  2. Going to a small town church action and feeling the sense of community. 

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Sunday:

  1. Rest day. Boy was I tired. 
  2. Chiefs football with nachos. Love.
  3. We finally had small group again! We had a few weeks off and it felt so good to be back in great discussion with some people I adore.

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Monday:

  1. Sheet pan dinners that can be prepped before work.
  2. Marriage counseling. I think everyone should do it. Ha!
  3. Granny could come and play and help with the girls. 

Tuesday

  1. Quick meetings where everyone comes to an agreement. Quickly. 
  2. My boss’s boss had a meeting to ask us ways our company and processes can improve. I really appreciate that.
  3. My cousin Alexis is in town and will be staying with us for the next few days! We love visitors. 

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Wednesday

  1. My work had Korean bipimap(?) bowls in the cafeteria - so exciting to try something new!
  2. Alexis was there to help with pumpkin carving. Somehow I didn’t prepare for the craziness associated with three adults trying to cook dinner, carve pumpkins, keep a 3 year old safe around knives, and calm a crying baby with a diaper rash. 
  3. Mom came over and sorted/clean the pumpkin seeds! Looking for a good spicy recipe now. 

I hope you have a great week! <3

What are you thankful for? 

Sunday, October 23, 2016

My Plan for the Week

Hey there!

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(Grandma June came over on Friday to help with Cora while I worked.)

I hope your weekend has been fantastic so far. Our’s has been pretty low key. After the funeral on Thursday we were ready for some down time.

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(Kids playing after the funeral). 

Friday night we hung around the house and enjoyed an amazing meal that our friends made us. 

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(Chicken pot pie with homemade biscuits, apple butter, and homemade butter. It doesn’t get better than this.)

Saturday I went to gym class. 

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(The assault bike and I have a love/hate relationship.)

I worked for a few minutes and then got the girls cleaned up to go to Target for a few essentials that we ran completely out of. Ina had a particularly hard time understanding why we had to buy toilet paper instead of Craoyla’s emoji making kit, but we all survived.  

After a nap for Cora and a little quiet time for Ina we met up with Dan, his mom, and grandma to drive to Dan’s dad’s church for a hog roast/auction. 

We had no idea what to expect, but had a complete blast. The food was fantastic and after we ate we sat in the church pews and experienced a real live auction of homemade goods donated to the church. We are now the proud owners of a Frozen blanket and lovely fall decor center piece. On the way home Dan and I were talking about how fun it would be to come back again next year. 

Here is my meal plan for the week. 

I hope you have a great week! <3

Thursday, October 20, 2016

Thankful

Hey there! 

I had every intention of taking a rest day today, but my eyes popped open at 4:39 and I couldn’t go back to sleep. After 5 minutes of laying in bed wondering what type of workout my gym would be doing, I finally decided to just get up and go find out. 

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Whew, it was a doozy.

We are attending services for Papa Gordon today, but before we leave I wanted to list out what I was thankful for this week:

Thursday:

  1. Granny texted us that Papa had a good day (I wrote this on Thursday, but am way more thankful for it now)
  2. Amazon Prime streaming videos. If you have kiddos, you need to watch Room on the Broom and The Gruffalo 
  3. Watching Ina recite The Pout Pout Fish while eating Pad Thai noodles (she held them up in the air and said, “…his tentacles were trailing in a gentle locomotion,” which of course made Cora attempt to do the same thing. 

Friday:

  1. I survived a week of 5 am workouts.
  2. My cube moved to the 3rd floor, which means only three flights of stairs in the morning instead of four. It’s the little things.
  3. Friends/neighbors stopping by. 

Saturday:

  1. Dan allowed me to get in some good girl time. Wine Walk FTW.
  2. New earrings from a local artist. I am not super materialistic, but every once in a while, something new is nice. 
  3. My mom and Kim for taking shifts to watch Cora! We are so blessed by our support system.

Sunday:

  1. We were able to tell Papa Gordon how much we loved him.
  2. Help with the girls at the nursing home from family. 
  3. Car seat straps. Because after an incredibly emotional day and trying to keep two kids controlled at a nursing home for hours, sometimes they just need to be contained. IMG 6693

Monday:

  1. Quiet morning time with Cora. We rarely get one-on-one time, so I have to take advantage of it when I can.
  2. Dan’s job flexibility that allowed him to help his mom this week.
  3. My mom made us dinner!

Tuesday:

  1. Walks with the girls. Ina started jogging and said, “I need to do my exercises.” 
  2. I successfully gave both girls dinner, a bath, read books, and put them in their own beds ALL BY MYSELF. I don’t know how single moms do it.
  3. The show This is Us and all the feels it gives me.

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Wednesday:

  1. Church cooked meals. Mmmm….so, so, so good.
  2. My friend Kathleen at work and her super coding skills. :)
  3. What people are willing to pay for used clothing on eBay. Seriously. 

I hope you have a fantastic day. <3

Wednesday, October 19, 2016

Goodbye Papa Gordon

On our way to visit Gordon on Sunday we received a call from the nursing home and then a few minutes later from hospice saying that he was declining fast. A few hours later Papa Gordon was no longer stuck in his cancer filled body.

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I am so thankful that Dan was able to be by the side of a man that meant so much to him for his last few hours of life.

Enhance

Describing how horrible it was to watch our family lose their husband, father, son, uncle, and papa is is not something I want to do. Instead, I am going to share some of my favorite Papa Gordon memories. 

- When I was pregnant with Ina, Dan and I took Teresa and Gordon to Hawaii. Preparing for the trip and the entire way there he talked about how excited he was that he would be able to try to "local cuisine". 

 However, after one taste of the “local cuisine” he ordered a cheeseburger everywhere we went. I wish I could relay how funny this was, but I guess you just had to be there.

- Teresa and Gordon used to watch Ina once a week. Every week. All but a few of those weeks Gordon drove to meet me half way to pick her up and drop her off. Many times he drove the entire way so I didn’t have to.

- Ina loved him. I mean, really loved him.

 

A video posted by Racheal (@runningwithrach) onOct 19, 2016 at 4:22am PDT

- When I stopped eating gluten it was almost as if he made it his life’s mission to create as many delicious gluten free desserts as possible. He did a fantastic job.

- He loved finding the newest health food with me and would often bring me a 5 pound bag of whatever it was from Costco. 

- He was always telling me about the newest (or oldest?) natural remedy for whatever ailment the girls had and would often go buy it to help. (I politely declined his offer to buy me castor oil when I was past my due date with Cora. Ha!)

-He almost always walked into our house wearing sweatpants and a smile. He would place whatever treat he had made on the counter and ask, “What’s up? How’s Racheal?"

-He helped Dan and I through some tough parenting moments and some even more tough marriage moments. 

He was a fantastic man and he will be very missed. <3

Sunday, October 16, 2016

Wine Walk + My Meal Plan

Good morning. 

How has the weekend been treating you so far? 

Our’s has been so fun! Friday night we did the grocery shopping/pizza making/bath/going to bed at 9 thing. I was able to get enough rest to prepare for Saturday. 

It started with a 3 mile run with Danielle,

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shortly followed by my functional fitness class which was super fun because they pulled out the big toys and I finally had the chance to flip the tire.  

 

Who knew exercising could be this fun?

A video posted by Racheal (@runningwithrach) onOct 16, 2016 at 4:56am PDT

After class Dan made breakfast while I read to the girls and we quickly got ready for Gibson’s second birthday party. 

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During the party the ladies were talking about their plan to do a wine walk downtown later that evening. It sounded like so much fun and like something I haven’t done in such a long time. I gave Dan the puppy dog look, quickly invited myself, and arranged for childcare for Cora (thanks Kim and Mom!!!). 

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It was a great night filled with tasty wine and fantastic company.

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After the walk we rode KC’s new street car, which was so fun, to grab some pizza at Grinder’s. 

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I had a blast, but my head was happy to hit the pillow at 11. Phew, it was a late one for this girl. 

Today we are going to church, visiting Papa at the nursing home, and then having small group at our house. 

Here is my meal plan for the week: 

Have a fantastic day! <3

Thursday, October 13, 2016

Thankful

Good morning!

 (source)

I am back from my gym class and ready to start the day, so let’s get to it. This week I was thankful for: 

Thursday:

  1. I am finally down to two cups of coffee per day. The third (and, ahem, sometimes fourth) were making me so jittery and causing low blood sugar in the afternoon. Even knowing this giving up my pre- and post-lunch cups of joe was hard.
  2. A beautiful fall mid-day run. 
  3. Finally cancelling my gym membership that I never, never used. (Motivated by Friday #1 below)

Friday:

  1. Finding a new gym, right now the street, with nice people and fantastic workouts. Seriously, a dream come true. 
  2. Getting a good night’s sleep after weeks of tossing and turning. 
  3. Passing a test at work that I was dreading. I have to take it every 2 years and every 2 years I dread it. 

Saturday:

  1. Having so many family members who will help with the girls. I think Dan’s sister has a radar that tells her when I need a break. She just swoops in and saves the day.
  2. Dutch ovens and the amount of delicious food that can be cooked in them.
  3. The space heater inside the camper. It kept us nice and toasty.

Sunday:

  1. Cora slept through the night in the camper. Whew. I think she knew if she didn’t I would set her pack N play up on the roof, so she made a wise decision. 
  2. The beautiful fall weather. Have I mentioned that yet?
  3. Dan cooked dinner, which means I had the entire weekend off from preparing food. I love to cook, but having a break every once in a while is nice. 

Monday:

  1. I followed a truck with a back full of Christmas trees on the way to work today. It put me in a good mood.
  2. My car was cleaned out by the wonderful workers at Water Way. Unfortunately, they didn’t find the cause of the dirty diaper smell, but did give us a lemon air freshener. When Ina got in the car she said, “Ewww…it smells like a rotten lemon in here.” I have to admit her assessment was on point, but there isn’t much I can do about it because I have no idea where the smell is coming from. 
  3. My mom watched the girls while Dan and I went to marriage counseling. 

Tuesday:

  1. Having a few freezers stocked with food. 
  2. Etsy seamstresses and their talents that greatly outweigh mine.
  3. Ina’s love for puzzles and how they will entertain her for hours. Our kitchen table is currently covered in puzzles that she doesn’t want to take apart. It is so cute that I am letting it slide. 

Wednesday:

  1. Ina making me coffee in the morning. Seriously, I have always said that all I want is for someone to make me coffee.
  2. A woman I work with is on Family Feud and we had a watch party at the office. So much fun!
  3. Having dinner ready and waiting in the slow cooker when I walk in the door. Fantastic. 

Have a great day! What are you thankful for? <3

Wednesday, October 12, 2016

Wednesday Update

Hey hey hey. 

I don’t have an organized post topic, so this is going to be in bullet format. 

 - Dan and I started watching This is Us last night. One episode in and I can say that this show is excellent. Like a cross between Parenthood and How I Met Your Mother. We both hysterically cried for a few minutes at the end and laughed in between. All the emotions. Hopefully I can convince him to watch another episode tonight. 

- I purchased the girls’ Halloween costumes yesterday. I had big plans in my head to make them and then the free space in my calendar between now and Halloween starting disappearing, so Amazon and Etsy for the win.

Ina told me she wanted to me a “Midnight Witch” (whatever that means?) and I had the bright idea of letting her look at the pictures on Amazon to pick out her own costume.

Never again.

As it turns out she is particular about these things. For example, she immediately threw the costume out of the running if it had a “crooked broom.” Twenty minutes and a lot of arguing later, we are the proud owner of the most expensive witch costume Amazon has to offer. Seriously, it has lights. 

- I am falling in love with my slow cooker again. Yesterday I made applesauce with some apples that were pre-sliced and pre-peeled in the freezer (thanks in-laws) and today I am slow cooking a turkey breast. Speaking of turkey, make these turkey Indian meatballs. You’re welcome.

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- I am still loving my functional fitness class down the street. I can’t wait to tell you more about it, but I leave every morning with my booty sufficiently kicked. I don’t even mind waking up at 4:40 to get there. Or at least this week I don’t. 

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- We put some more Star Wars tattoos on the girls yesterday. Cora couldn’t stop looking at her belly and giggling. 

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I hope you have an excellent hump day. See you tomorrow with some things to be thankful for!

<3

Monday, October 10, 2016

Rendezvous 2016

Good morning and Happy Monday! 

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I hope you had a fantastic weekend. 

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We went camping with Dan’s dad and his friends. This is a yearly event and the 4th year we have been.

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(Dan’s sister Kotey and her fiancĂ© Garth. They are getting married next month and both girls are going to be flower girls!)

Let me tell you, these people know how to camp. 

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More specifically, they know how to cook. 

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The main meal is almost exclusively cooked with Dutch ovens and is hands down the best meal I eat each year. 

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(Dan’s step mom, the cutest sous chef. Dan was taking this picture and he was more than likely messing with her. Ha!)

Dan’s dad was also sweet enough to let us borrow one of his rental campers. The girls absolutely loved it.

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We had a few sleeping issues with Cora the first night, as she is used to sleeping in her crib by herself, but Dan took over Cora duty the second night and did much better than me at getting her to sleep. 

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Ina loved being the only kid with many adults to give her their undivided attention. She colored, told stories, and threw lots of leaves on her sister. Cora was a little fussy, but I am going to chalk that up to a lack of sleep and a different environment. 

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We got home Sunday afternoon and spent the rest of the day catching up for the week - lawn mowing, grocery shopping, laundry, etc. 

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I hope you have a great day! <3

Sunday, October 9, 2016

My Plan for the Week

Hey there!

We are camping right now and enjoying lots of delicious food cooked by people other than me. Bless their wonderful, amazing, generous hearts.

(Last year’s spread. I am sure this year will look just as good.)

(One more picture from last year. So little. Currently trying not to cry.)

Enjoying events, meals, and/or weekends like this is part of my “eating healthy but enjoying life plan.” However, the most important aspect of that plan is making sure those treats don’t leak into the rest of the week. The best way for me ensure this is to meal plan, or before I know it I am ordering a pizza on Monday during my drive home from work.

Here is my plan for the week:

As far as fitness goes, I am super excited to have joined a new bootcamp style / cross fit “light” type gym that is, get this, on my street. When I found out about them I couldn’t wipe the smile off my face. I tried a workout on Friday morning, absolutely loved it, and joined on the spot. I will hopefully have a more detailed post about the types of workouts we do after a few weeks or so. 

Enjoy the rest of your weekend! Please let me know about any new/delicious recipes you are trying! 

I plan to be back tomorrow with some pictures from the weekend. Until then, you can follow me on Instagram or Snapchat (username: runningwithrach).

Have a good week!

<3

Thursday, October 6, 2016

Thankful

Good morning!

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(So, this year’s sunflower picture was a fail. Does it count if they have lost all their petals?)

It is nice and stormy in KC, which is the perfect opportunity to procrastinate my run and sit down with my laptop and piping hot Yeti and talk about what I was thankful for this week.

Thursday:

  1. Cora, out of the blue, started walking. Of course, I was excited to see her reach this milestone, but more fun was seeing her eyes light up with excited determination with each step she took. 
  2. Some outside kick the ball time with the family. I never realized how fun kicking a ball could be. I now very slightly understand the draw to soccer.
  3. I found my retainer! After four days of not wearing it my teeth had moved so much I kept on biting the inside of my mouth. Ouch.

Friday:

  1. A quick but heart pounding morning workout. This was exactly what I needed to provide the mental clarity required to tackle this day.
  2. Kim, my friend/neighbor, brought over apple cider donuts. YUM.
  3.  Early bedtime on Friday. Nothing makes me feel more cool than turning the lamp out at 8:30.

Saturday:

  1. Being blessed with so many loved ones to visit. 
  2. Having friends with kids the same age as mine. 
  3. Having little kids when visiting the nursing home. I know that sounds super strange, but when we go to the nursing home to visit Papa Gordon,  the residents sitting in the hallway light up as we walk by and almost always ask a question or make a comment. Ina and Cora are both attention seekers, so they eat it up dancing, singing, or yelling. One of the residents legit yodeled for Ina this past visit. It was the best. Another resident just looked at me seriously and said, “I hope you know what you have right now."

Sunday:

  1. Having a huge unconditional support system.
  2. The fall weather has been absolutely beautiful. Can we always have small group outside?
  3. Seeing Sarah, my friend who lives in DC. It was just for an hour, but was so nice.

Monday:

  1. Dan’s new job allows him to take the girls to work with him on days when they can’t go to Danielle’s. Actually taking both girls may have been a little overwhelming. Next time, maybe we can divide and hope for the best.
  2. Coming home to two healthy girls. I have to admit, I was a little worried. Just a little.
  3. Good, quality, week night family time.

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Tuesday:

  1. Facetiming Dan and the kids when they are home and I am at work. It was hard to stay there, especially when Cora didn’t understand how she could see me, but not touch me, which led to a little pre-nap meltdown. Poor thing. I am sure my co-workers will take me completely serious now that they may have heard me reciting Chicka Chicka Boom Boom in an attempt to make her stop crying. 
  2. Parents as Teachers. We have been on the waiting list for a while, so we just recently started. However, we love it. Cora was evaluated, and everything was fine with her. They also have a fantastic library full of books, games, and toys. We checked out a toy from the library. So cool!
  3. Chipotle is available when my cooking desires are not. 

Wednesday:

  1. This super easy but delicious one pan dinner
  2. Work is winding down. A little. Which means I don’t feel the need to be on email the first hour of my day. Instead, I can talk to you. :)
  3. Ina finally deciding on a Halloween costume. Hopefully this one sticks. 

What are you thankful for?

Have a lovely day! <3

Tuesday, October 4, 2016

Full Family Workout

Hi there!

Blogging for three days in a row. I must be setting some type of 2016 record.

Yesterday Danielle’s son was sick (poor little guy), so Dan took the girls with him to work. I had the morning to myself and instead of squeezing in a workout, I decided to leisurely get ready for work, paint my nails, and make myself breakfast. You know, the important stuff. 

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(Aside: have you tried mashed sweet potatoes for breakfast? I roast a batch of them in foil, squeeze the flesh out of the skin, and mash it in a big bowl that I keep in the fridge. For breakfast I grab what I want and top with almond butter, chia seeds, and cinnamon. So yummy and nutritious.)

After work I knew I had to get a workout in, but pulled in the driveway to find Dan and the girls home a little early. Dan insisted I could go on a run, but I decided I was up for the challenge of working out while hanging out with the family. 

I grabbed my weights and some popsicles for distraction and got to work.

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Note, more than one popsicle is necessary when you have more than one kid. Also note that I do sometimes put pants on Cora and brush Ina’s hair. Sometimes.

Ina counted my reps and did some of my HIIT rounds with me (high knees, sprinting across the yard, fast feet, etc.). Dan ran the timer. Cora cried when I wouldn’t hold her and was great at dripping popsicle juice down my back during push-ups and planks.

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As you can see, some were more helpful than others. 

Even though the workout took me almost twice as long as it would have normally, we all actually had a great time and enjoyed a beautiful fall evening in the back yard together. 

We wrapped up the evening with leftovers for dinner (I had leftover soup), a little chocolate, and an episode of Fixer Upper. 

'Twas a good day. 

Monday, October 3, 2016

A Fun Filled Sunday

Good morning!

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I am recovering from one fun filled Sunday. Little did I know that so much could be packed into one day. After Ina and I finished our meal planning for the week Dan and Cora woke and joined us in the kitchen to make some chili for small group that evening. 

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Once the pot was simmering I escaped for a little run. It was so beautiful outside that I wished the run was longer, but I had to get back in time to do some arms + core and get the family ready for church. 

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(Cora enjoyed my breakfast smoothie a little more than I did.)

After church I checked my phone to see that my friend Sarah was in town for a few hours, so I dropped Cora and Dan off at the house for a nap and Ina and I went to visit her. It was so, so good to see her and her parents and to eat these pumpkin cookies. I don’t think anything reminds me of fall more.

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Ina and I came back home in time to blitz-clean the house and then we all got in the car to meet Papa Gordon and part of Dan’s family for a late lunch. Papa Gordon is in hospice and a nursing home, but they thought it would be OK if he ventured out for an afternoon and it seemed to work really, really well. 

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We pulled in the driveway just in time for our small group to start. We had a great discussion regarding spiritual warfare while enjoying the beautiful fall weather while the kids played in the yard behind us. Then the dads and the kids snuck into the field next door for a little pre-dinner football. 

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We ended the night with chili and dessert and wonderful fellowship. Both girls fell asleep within 5 minutes of the last person leaving. 

Although this day may have been a little physically draining, it was very much spiritually filling. I went to bed with a full heart. 

I hope you have a lovely week!

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