Saturday, October 24, 2009

Good decisions...

I love the feeling of a decision that Mike and I make and we don't have any regrets. They come on many different levels. Picking a good restaurant where we have a super dinner. Excellent feeling. Making a major life decision like moving to another state for a wonderful job opportunity. Super excellent feeling. Picking a new house for some of it's practical characteristics and not just aesthetic reasons. Fun and good feelings. Deciding to get our children vaccinated for H1N1 despite the media and personal influences. Confident feeling. I'm not here to debate the pros and cons of the new H1N1 vaccine or what you think the government/media may be telling us about it. Mike and I consulted with both our internist and our children's pediatrician and went on their advice. They were able to give us compelling evidence and advice to go ahead and do it. There weren't any scare tactics and they were honest. I think that all of us are capable of making really good decisions. We also have made some doozies, too. Luckily not many of ours have been to catastrophic but don't think for one moment that Mike and I do not take decisions for our children's health lightly. There were many a day last spring where I think we questioned some of our decisions on choices we made for Molly. It is a horrible, sinking feeling and one that I do not handle well. We are sooooo blessed that we have those decisions in the past and were able to look at them now as a bump in the road. I think we have learned a lot from it and that is why I didn't take the decision to vaccinate lightly. I feel good about it and I hope that if you are reading this that you support our decision even if you would chose differently for your family. There are no better people to make choices for our children than ourselves. I thank god that we are able to freely make these choices every day.

Happy Saturday!

Monday, October 19, 2009

Columbus 1/2 Marathon 2009

Yesterday my hubby ran his first 1/2 marathon in Columbus. It was the Nationwide Better Health Columbus Marathon and 1/2 Marathon held in downtown Columbus, Ohio. The weather was crisp and cool but sunny. I am sooooo upset because I didn't forget my camera but forgot to grab the battery that was charging in the wall at home. So disappointed. Here is a picture of Mike at 6:30 am before he left our hotel.

Mike ran with his brother, Mark. The kids and I went with my sister-in-law and our nieces to watch the Dads at mile 9 and then we watched them come in to the finish. I was so proud of Mike. He did great and was in way better shape after running 13.1 miles than I anticipated. Sorry honey for not having the faith. I, myself, would be crawling but Mike did awesome!

Here we are at the finish

All in all it was a great weekend as I got to see 2 of my dearest friends from college Saturday night. I met my friends Julie and Tracy at the Cheesecake Factory for a late dessert and we talked for hours. The thing I love the most about them is we can start talking at it's like no time has passed since the last time we were together. We covered a lot of subjects, too!

The kids traveled great except for Miss A's two episodes of car sickness which aren't that unusual for her. After the second time we wised up and rearranged the seats and she did great. She's always one to keep Mommy and Daddy on their toes!

I really hope Mike tries doing a 1/2 marathon again. The excitement in the air was really cool and watching the marathon runners at their best was exhilarating. The clip at which they run, even at the half way point, was so inspiring. They just fly!
I glad we were their to support Mike!

Friday, October 16, 2009

Another year of existence...

Here's to another birthday come and very shortly at midnight wasn't a bad day. I thoroughly enjoyed the opportunity to go in to Cameron's class today and be the art appreciation teacher. The lesson was on lines and I have to say that I don't think I did all that bad. At least my 5 year old told me I did good and isn't that all that really matters?? :)

I thought I would compile a list of things that I really like. Things that make me smile and bring me comfort. Things that give you that warm and fuzzy feeling.

I love rain at bedtime and through the night. I love the sound on the roof and the windows. The rolling ocean would be a good second but I love rain.

I love small surprises. I love a card in the mail from someone I wasn't expecting one from. I love the little gestures that make me think someone was thinking of me.

I love hot tea. Earl Gray and Constant Comment are my favorite. Eli's, a coffee shop here in town, has the best Raspberry Earl Gray around. It warms my soul.

I love wine spritzers. I love any wine with 1/2 ginger ale or sprite. The fizz and the taste awaken my taste buds. Love it.

I love when my kids give me an unexpected please or thank you. It makes me stop and think that I may actually be doing a pretty good job. It makes me smile.

I love hugs from my baby. She wraps her little fat arms around your neck and just squeezes. She loves to smash faces together, too. She really is a sweet girl even if she can be a handful in the same breath.

I love desserts. I think this one unfortunately is obvious. I love sweets. It's a fact.

With that said I didn't have any sweets on my birthday so I hope to make up for it tomorrow with some friends. We are off to Columbus for Mike and his brother to run a 1/2 marathon on Sunday. A prayer for no injuries and a fun time would be appreciated! Go Mike!

Friday, October 9, 2009

Quick soup

It has been raining here almost non-stop for 2 days. Cameron was sick 2 days from school this week with a virus so I'm starting to feel a little bit of cabin fever. I say this carefully as a really do detest taking the kids out in the rain because I am always the one who ends up getting soaked. It it better now since we can load and unload in a garage. When we were in that dreaded apartment it was just awful in the rain. Everyone was wet but me the most! Typical of the us, we had a miscommunication between Mike and I and I thought he had class last night but he didn't. I didn't know this until 4 o'clock and had nothing planned for dinner. It was going to be one of those "anything goes" nights here. When I found out he was going to be home I thought I'd better make an attempt at dinner. But, what can you make in less than 2 hours with nothing thawed? I love scouring the internet for recipes and found this one under a 30 minute soup website. I have to say on a cold, rainy night it really hit the spot. I thought I would share a quick and easy meal that my hubby really enjoyed. He's not a fan of me experimenting on him but this one worked out!

Meatball Pasta Soup

Prep Time: 10 minutes
Cook Time: 20 minutes (I cooked it longer and let it simmer a bit)


1 package (1 pound) Frozen Cooked Meatballs
1 (28 ounce) jar your favorite Pasta Sauce
6 cups water
1 cup pre-shredded carrots (I used baby carrots and cut them up small)
3 cloves garlic, minced
1 green bell pepper, chopped
1 cup orzo pasta
1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese

In large stock pot combined meatballs, pasta sauce, water, carrots and garlic. Bring to a boil and then simmer for about 15 minutes. Add peppers and pasta and cook 8 more minutes. Stir frequently. Serve with cheese.

I didn't add the green pepper because I didn't have any and I can't tolerate green peppers anymore (don't ask!). It would be really good with yellow or red pepper which I find more mild. I thought about adding a can of great northern beans to this and think that it would be a good addition. The pasta sauce gives it just enough kick and the orzo makes the soup a little thicker which I love. I bet you could use elbow macaroni or any small pasta as a substitution.

I really recommend this with a great hunk of bread or a nice muffin. Enjoy!

Friday, October 2, 2009

Our calendar girl...

Wow! What an amazing night we have had. I'll back track a few months and share that over the summer Molly was asked to be in the 2010 calendar for the Children's Hospital of Illinois. It is a fundraiser for their Child Life Department. The Child Life Specialists are the wonderful women of the hospital who do all the fun things for kids. When waiting to go into surgery they bring you movies to watch, they bring crafts and coloring books, they make sure Mom and Dad are doing good, they make sure that the kids aren't scared. When you are in radiology they play music on a CD player to help you relax, they blow bubbles while you are under the x-ray machine, whatever you need. When you are inpatient they plan pizza parties and snow-cone parties, they set up visits by local sports teams and local celebrities, they bring Wii game consoles to rooms for parents and kids to play. They are everything fun about the hospital! We LOVE these women and the important role that they have played in our daughter's success in getting well and healing. When they asked if we would be interested in being in the calendar I didn't even hesitate to say yes. It is their only fundraiser of the year and all proceeds go directly to their budget which allows all these wonderful events to take place every day at the hospital. These women were my sanity on many a long day with Molly. The calendar turned out beautiful! A local photographer donates her time to take all the pictures. Her work is breathtaking. We are so honored to have been apart of this year's calendar.

Here are some pictures from tonight...

Thanks to Dale, Margaret, Regan and Cailin for coming tonight, too! We had fun celebrating Cailin's b-day! It was also so special that Dr. R came, too. He had probably been in surgery all day but still made an appearance. He's very special to us!