Monday, November 30, 2015

November in a Nutshell

 Games, sports, and time with friends at sports class

Bouncing at the trampoline park 

 Wearing our matching buffalo check

 Erupting a color changing volcano

 Running outside with my best cheerleader

Learning the art of the force at the Belmont Stars Wars Symposium 

 Celebrating the Belmont Young Women at Night of Excellence

Watching The Good Dinosaur in 3-D! 

C giving his first talk in primary 

 Morning exploring with little sister

Decorating the gingerbread turkey

Visiting family for Turkey Day!

Saturday, October 31, 2015

Super Halloween!

                                                                            Halloween 2015, Belmont, MA

Saturday, October 17, 2015


Fall is here and we couldn't be happier about it!  The weather has been amazingly warm and the leaves in New England never disappoint.  We'll be maximizing our time in the backyard as long as possible!

Sunday, October 11, 2015

Chicago Marathon

Chicago Marathon 2015

Finishing the Chicago Marathon was truly a miracle.  When I registered for the race many months ago, I had high hopes of racing my best.  However after a summer injury that turned into three or four injuries, my goal for the race was just to finish and enjoy the experience.  Fortunately I was able to do both!

The weather was unusually warm for Chicago in September and there was a pretty significant headwind, but there was so much aid and crowd support on the course that I barely noticed the heat or the wind. The course was lined with spectators from start to finish making the miles fly by.  I had read several reviews of the race prior to running it and many people mentioned that the first 7 miles really fly by but that the last 10 can be tough as you make a turn out of the city before coming back to the finish.  I had the opposite experience though with the first 5-7 miles being the toughest.  Once my legs were warm and my injuries loosened up, I felt pretty strong for the entire race.  It wasn't until mile 23 or so that I started to get a little anxious to finish.

I loved seeing the different neighborhoods of Chicago, but I especially loved that the course was a giant loop that went right by our hotel twice.  I was able to see Chris and the kids at mile 2 and then our plan was to meet up around mile 13.  Unfortunately we missed each other at our second location since the crowds were 10 people deep and I couldn't spot them, but Chris saved the day by trekking another few miles with both kids to meet me around mile 16.  We traded high fives and exchanged water bottles and I was re-energized for the last 10 miles.

This was my first world majors and first big marathon (40,000 runners) and while I did love the energy and the crowds, I was surprised at how much more mileage you end up doing to walk to the start/finish, to and from the hotel, etc. Also, it was interesting to be at the starting line and hear the gun go off but not start running for another 10 minutes or so as you wait in your corral.  Overall it was a great day and an experience I'll always treasure.  I finished in a comfortable 3:45 but more importantly I finished with a big smile on my face and heart full of gratitude.

Total mileage on race day once I was home and ready for bed--32.5 miles!!

Saturday, October 10, 2015

Chicago Day 2

On our second day in Chicago, we were up early so I went for a quick shakeout run before we had a delicious breakfast buffet at the hotel.  From there we headed to the Marathon Expo to pick up my bib.  The runner energy around the city was palpable, but it was undeniable at the expo.  My adrenaline was pumping as I was surrounded by 40,000 other people ready to run 26.2 miles, but I knew I needed to stay off my feet, so we shopped through a few booths and headed back to the hotel.
The crew was happy to cuddle in bed while I was out for my run.

 Chicago Marathon Expo, McCormick Place Convention Center, Chicago, IL

 My little sidekick jumped in every picture --he couldn't be more proud of mama!

Chicago is one of six World Major Marathons (the others being: Berlin, Tokyo, London, Boston, and New York).  Hoping to cross them all off the list in my lifetime!

The hotel had tons of perks, but one of our favorites was the tv screen in the bathroom mirror.  I didn't understand why it was necessary at first, but I realized it was great when I was up early on race day and wanted to follow the race coverage without waking my sleeping crew.  Chris is now convinced we need one in our own home.

We ended the day with a brief walk to look for more pasta for dinner and to let the kiddos run around for a bit and then back to the hotel for more swimming!  Thankfully the kids love it and it's a relaxing pre-race activity for me--win-win!

Needless to say the kids give Chicago two thumbs up!