Myself, Roxy & Curtis at the trailhead

Time on the Mountain

Our long weekend was crazy! We had swimming, fundraisers, church, shopping, and parties to fill our time, but Curtis and I managed to eek out a little date time alone on the mountain too.

As I mentioned in a previous post we’ve recently decided that we need to try and get out together a little more often so that we get a bit of a break and some much needed time alone together to reconnect.

Curtis took the lead this time and arranged for a sitter on Sunday afternoon. We decided we would go for a trail “run”.

Up Vedder Mountain we went.

I’ve been up there numerous times but I don’t think I’ve ever been all the way to the top. When you’re taking kids along you kind of go at their pace. Sometimes that pace is SLOW. It’s more about the journey then the destination.

When it’s two adults going things are a bit quicker. As I said Curtis and I were “running” which was really more like a fast hike, running sections here and there. We managed to make the 10km round trip in about an hour and a half. Slowed down mostly by the dog.

It was so fun to get out, enjoy something together that we seldom get to do alone, and chat.

I think Roxy enjoyed the trip too. She often gets overshadowed by the kids when we go as a family and our little hike probably felt a lot like the good ol’ days for her.

It was a little nostalgic for us too to be out together in the woods. We’ve always enjoyed being in the outdoors together so for us it feels a little like we’re getting back to our roots. We both feel most at rest when we’re outside and the conversation flows easily!

How about you? Did you manage to squeeze in a bit of time alone with your special someone this weekend? I hope so!

Date, What’s a Date?

Maybe you’ve been there maybe you haven’t, but that moment when you sit down next to your spouse and say “Hi my name is Cynthia, what’s yours?” should really never happen.

You know what I mean. You get busy – in the literal running around after kids, doing skating, preschool, doctors appointments, work, & friends kind of way.

All of a sudden you sit on the couch next to your spouse and you feel like you haven’t talked to them in months. You need to get to know each other again.

Curtis and I experienced this just a few weeks ago.

We were feeling lonely and disconnected from each other. We were starving for some time alone together out of our house without our kids or other people. We wanted to hang out.

We started talking about a date. We realized the last date we had planned was way back in early December and we had cancelled it because the kids were sick. We intended to reschedule over the holidays of course. Prior to that we couldn’t recall the last time we had been out together. It might have been October when my parents were here to visit. It was April. This needed to change.

We had to refresh our memories. We were unsure of what this thing society calls a date really was. We decided to redefine it.

We realized that what often deterred us from going out was cost. I’m not complaining I’m just stating the truth. When it came right down to it and it was time to put a date on the budget page we often chose to spend our money differently. We had a hard time justifying it.

It was time to re-prioritize.

It’s funny I always think of a date in the traditional as seen on TV kind of date – dinner, movie, some other extravagant event, evening, late nights etc. The reality of this is that I’m not a dinner and a movie kind of girl and he’s not a dinner and a movie kind of guy. If that’s what we want we can stay home and enjoy from the comfort of our couch.

When we actually talked about the things that we enjoy doing together, the best times we’ve had and when we’ve connected the best it’s always been when we’re outside.

Having this conversation was one of the best things we could have done because we realized that to us a “date” is a hiking trip, a run, a paddle, a bike ride or some other outdoor endeavour. None of those things cost us any more than the babysitters time.

All of a sudden a whole new world opened up to us.

So. We went out. Our first date in an unnamed amount of time was a bike ride. It was SOOOOOOOO GOOOOOOD! I can’t even express it.

Relaxing together doing something that we both enjoy was amazing. We tagged a coffee on to the end cause really, who can survive without coffee?! And we went home after 3 hours feeling reconnected and refreshed ready for anything the munchkins could throw at us.

That afternoon was such a good reminder to us that we need to make each other a priority. It’s so easy to brush each other off when other things come up but really we committed our lives to each other. When the kids are gone – and one day they will be – Curtis will still be here.

I don’t want to look up in 15-20 years and realize I have a roommate not a partner. That I am living with a stranger.

I want to be that couple who still loves each other dearly after 50 years. Still holds hands as we walk along the beach. Still proclaims that the other is our best friend.

Being that couple takes a lot of effort. To us it means prioritizing the other. Not pushing each other off when something else comes up. The best thing we can do for each other and for our kids is work at our relationship. Make our marriage a priority. For us right now, that means dating. For you maybe it’s something else.

So, we date. Next weekend we’re going on a trail run. I can’t wait!


The importance of ME!

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I learned a valuable lesson about myself today but let me start by explaining how I got there.

L is sick. again. Again. AGAIN! This is a recurring pattern in our house. She is often sick AGAIN before she’s really better. Needless to say it’s been a long winter.

I got up this morning, dressed for a run, got the kids up, E ready for school and realized that instead of running with L in the stroller during preschool as I often do, I would be spending the morning trying to figure this out. I was bummed but you do what you need to for your kids, right.

I spent 5 hours in Emerg this weekend with her and I don’t question or doubt the treatment that we received there it was excellent. I left feeling confident that my baby was on the up and up. Yesterday she seemed fine. Today, not so much.

So, my morning run was spent calling the health unit (because I was wondering if this was a reaction to her 12mo shots), calling the nurses hotline – not sure why I bothered I have never found them to be remotely helpful but that’s a whole nother rant. Then calling our Dr’s office to see if they can squeeze her in – again. They rock and know me by name.

Sadly by the time this was done my opportunity to run with the single stroller was GONE. My stress level had also exploded through the roof and I found myself for the first time in all of this truly feeling like I had reached my limit. I wanted to cry and I think that those around me were just lucky that no one pushed the right button because seriously, I would have flipped.

I was still dressed to run at preschool pick up but I had not yet run.

I spent the afternoon being pretty short with E, holding a baby that was exhausted, sick, and very fussy, and feeling my anxiety level rising. But I was still dressed to run.

I took L to her Dr’s apt. Dropped her swab off at the lab, picked up some lettuce, and came home for dinner. But I was still dressed to run.

At some point this afternoon Curtis suggested that I go for my run after the kids were in bed. They’re in bed early enough and we now have light long enough that this was a totally viable option AND I could run ALONE no stroller. This may not sound like a big deal to you but seriously can’t tell you when I last went out without a stroller.

It would be a shorter run than I had planned but it would still be a run and I was on it.

So, kids in bed, I’m still dressed in my running clothes from the AM and I walk out the door for a short run.

Ahhhh! Heaven!

I should have done it earlier. I came home totally refreshed, in a good mood, having processed my day and ready to fly.

It was such a good reminder to me that I am important. That my time to process is important. That I need to prioritize me and my run.

You see I have this aversion to running with our double stroller. It’s nice. In fact it’s a beautiful stroller but packed with both kids it’s about 100 pounds. So when my opportunity to run with the single stroller and a sleeping baby was written off this morning by things out of my control I wrote off my run.

What I realized tonight when I came home was that if I had sucked up my aversion to the double stroller and gone out after preschool with the kids we probably all could have had a better day. I would have been WAY less stressed. My anxiety level would have greatly decreased if not disappeared AND both my kids love running with me. I would have been a much more fun Mom for E, way less snappy and a lot more motivated.

So, here’s to the reminder of the importance of ME. Of my time, of my run. I need it, we all need it. Taking the time out to do something that refreshes you as a Mom is SO important. Your family will thank you for it.

Oh, and the scenery was BEAUTIFUL. Painfully so. Can’t complain about that either.

Tomorrow morning I will remind myself of this and load both kids up to go. Everyone will be happier 🙂

First Half Marathon – Whoohoo!

May 25/14 I finally accomplished a huge goal of mine, I participated in my first half marathon!


Run For Water 1/2 Marathon 2014 time 2:02:24

Run For Water 1/2 Marathon 2014 time 2:02:24

This has been a huge goal for me for the last 3 years, and for various reasons it hasn’t happened – it’s been the elusive unicorn of my fitness goals for THREE YEARS! You know what they say, third time’s a charm! I was NOT going to be denied again.


I picked out my race – the Run for Water Half Marathon WELL in advance (like last May when I realized that I wasn’t going to be able to run it then because I was pregnant).


I chose this race for a few reasons – it’s close to home, they run an awesome family event with activities etc. for your kids/family to participate in while they wait, and it’s known to be a pretty good course. Plus you get a snazzy long sleeved technical running shirt if you register early – who can say no to that!


Over the last few years 15-20K has become a typical distance for my long run once a week, so despite not running during my pregnancy I hoped I had enough base fitness to at least work up to the distance by race day and finish the race.


In December when I was 8 months pregnant I sat down and looked at the best and worst case scenarios for weeks of training time to see if I actually thought I could do it considering my late January due date. I thought I could even if I didn’t start running until late March, or early April, so I made it known that I wanted my race registration for Christmas. Really, I was 8 months Pregnant at Christmas, what do I need – clothes, no, baby stuff, no thank you, this was something for me!


In early March my midwives cleared me to run again – L was 5 weeks old and I had been chomping at the bit for a couple weeks already. So March 6, I laced up my shoes and went out for a very leisurely 5K it was slow but it felt SO good to be out.


I am lucky to have a Man that values fitness like I do so he accommodated my running needs like a champ. He quit work early some nights to make sure I got out for my runs, helped me fit them into my schedule, took care of the kids so I didn’t have to push the stroller, and gave L bottles while I was out for my long runs. Without him cheering me on  from the sidelines I would not have accomplished this goal. I would probably still be sitting on the couch.


So, Sunday May 25/14, I crossed the finish line of my first official half marathon 2hours, 2 mins, and 24 seconds (2:02:24) after I started. My goal had been anything under 2:10 so I was very happy. It felt harder than I wanted it to, but I pushed hard, and was happy just to accomplish the goal – infact I cried a little as I started the run on Sunday morning because I knew I would accomplish my goal that day :). I can always run another and shoot for a better time.


Have you accomplished a big goal recently? I’d love to hear about it!


To Run or Not To Run . . .

Normally I would tell you that I am a runner.  Lately I’ve been struggling with motivation and I’m not sure I fit the bill.  Until early August my weekly routine was 2 morning boot camps, and three morning runs.  Then I had to go away on business a few times and my routine got all out of whack.  It’s funny how a short break in the routine can have such a lasting effect on your daily life! Now a month later I still seem to be having some motivational issues.

5:00 am just doesn’t feel that great to me right now, and it’s gotten dark.  I don’t know about you but I’m not a huge fan of running in the dark.  Working full time I don’t have a lot of other choices though. I can run early in the dark, or I can run late in the dark.  So I’m trying to work through this, I don’t want to give up running for the winter but some mornings I just can’t convince myself to go.  Some mornings I win the motivation battle.  Others I loose.

In part I think my problem is that I’m not training for anything in particular right now.  I’m not working towards any goal.  I was training for a half marathon in August, but for a variety of reasons I was unable to run.  Now I feel like I’m just kind of running aimlessly.  I am however trying to get back to a place where I enjoy it. Running has started to feel a little like a chore that I have to tick of my list everyday.  That makes being motivated hard.  So I’ve turned off the pace setter on my running app, and quit worrying about the distance that I’m running every week.  For now I’m going to run for the sake of running, and hopefully when I come across an event that strikes my fancy, I’ll be ready to go.