Friday, April 29, 2011


By all accounts, this should have been an amazing week.
My parents gave me my birthday Garmin on Saturday, and I was all set and scheduled to start rocking my C25K workouts like NObody's business.

(cue violins)

Somehow, while standing and teaching, or walking, or doing something equally NOT STRENUOUS, I wrenched a muscle in my back.

There has been some serious discomfort.

And then, while I know we have nothing to complain about,  the weather has been rainy, rainy, dreary yucky, until this morning.

Well, hello, Mr. Sun!  I had forgotten what you looked like.

Oh, of course there is the cold from h  that has decided that it will NEVER. LEAVE. ME.

Add in leftover desserts, easter candy, and a general feeling of malaise or angst, and you have the recipe for a seriously overwhelmed mama.

Oh.... I forgot to mention that the real root of the STRESS is that I have scheduled the concerts for my school bands and now I am freaking out because...  it's what I do. *shrug*


I need to do something.

I have been toying with the idea of eliminating sugar from my diet.
I won't lie - that idea scares me to pieces.
(Which is part of the reason that I think I might have to do it.)

It will take planning.

Serious sweet tooth?  check.
Must have an alternative on hand at all times.
Oh goodness.


There are other options:

Counting calories at again.

Eating intuitively.

Portion control. (more like Portion POLICING)

There have to be other options....

Cutting white flour?  (oh no.....  that is one that I SHOULD do, but....  how do I even begin???)


I have no idea what to do, or where to start.
I have to go organize something.

Tuesday, April 26, 2011

Birthday Earrings, workout update

One of my seventh grade students, who isn't even in band right now (although is in the instrument selection process for next year) made me a pair of adorable earrings for my birthday.  We were on vacation last week, and I don't remember talking about my birthday, so it was a big surprise. :)

Aren't they adorable?  I love them!! I wish that I had taken a better picture so you could see the details, because they are really lovely.

Yesterday, at the end of the school day, I changed into my workout clothes and headed out.  I was planning to run a C25K week 3 workout, but my friend Lori asked if she could tag along.  It was mostly walking, to be honest, which is really all my lungs could handle.  I am SO TIRED OF HAVING A COLD!!!   But-- I got out there, and I ran when I could, and coughed up a lung when I was done, and have more stats from my beautiful Garmin.  <3    2.5 miles, on a nice brisk day.

What a luxury to have all of the information right there after I connect my Garmin to the computer.  No more trying to remember exactly where I turned back around, or guessing how fast i was going.  I cannot wait to be healthy so that I can really start training for my 5Ks this summer!!

Sunday, April 24, 2011

Birthday Garmin!!

Oh my goodness, oh my goodness!!

Please, if you must regard the numbers, bear in mind that I am in the middle of cold number 83 this season.  (Actually, it's probably number 4... so that might have been a slight exaggeration!)   The numbers are NOT the point of this post.  The POINT of this post is that I have a Garmin!!  (insert happy crazy dancing.)

I am quite happy!

And......  the best part:

Best Pace:


Of course, I probably only sustained it for about 2 seconds. (maybe.)

But, on AVERAGE, my running times were about 11 min/mil!
And no more guessing!
I am just so beyond excited about this.

Mr. Garmin -- Ms. Garmin?   Needs a name.


Thanks, Mom and Dad for my birthday present. I love, love, love, love it!!

Friday, April 22, 2011

Ode to DayQuil

Dear DayQuil,

All night long I coughed and coughed.
I tossed and turned,
and groaned and sighed.
I had taken a cough suppressant with codeine prescribed for me,
but sadly it didn't suppress a thing.

I awoke this morning hacking and aching,
and reached for my DayQuil before my coffee.
And here I am, not too long after,
able to think and breathe
and the coughing mostly subsided.

Thank you, DayQuil,
for giving me back the joy of my vacation!

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Vacation Plague, Chapter 2

School vacation = SO much extra time to get running and activity things!   Getting sick for the 18th time this year!!!!  :(

Thrilled.  To pieces.

And of course my sons are sick too.  Is it too much to ask that I feel healthy on my birthday (tomorrow)?  Last year, I had just given birth, AND I had the 24 hour flu-- for real- on my birthday.  It was AWFUL.   So I don't think that my request, my petition, my prayer to feel healthy on my birthday is unreasonable.

On a totally unrelated note, I have another blog that I am writing actively on.  It's where I write about what I am learning in my daily Bible studies, and things that the Lord is doing in our lives.  I have been wrestling toying with the idea of merging the two. Because face it, it's not like I have a huge readership.  I haven't decided if I am going to do it or not.  I feel like they have two different functions.  But as I feel the leading to share more about my daily life on Crying Out to My God, I wonder whether to post the same thing in both places, or just to merge them.  I mean... it's hard to be clever and witty all time.  To try to come up with daily life material that is different for two blogs?  Oy.  I know what would happen.  I would create something so funny, and so relevant (yeah right) that I would want to post it in both places. I mean, good material is too good to waste, right?   So then the one or two people (if there are actually any people that read both of my blogs.... are there?) would be seeing the same content two times.  I did that for my Happy Birthday Cuddle Bug post.   Maybe that is just the way things will stay.

To quote a song that I really don't care for, by an artist that I really DO care for -- it's a tough place to be in, actually:

"This is the stuff that drives me crazy. This is the stuff that's getting to me lately...."
      - -Francesca Batastelli

It's clearly vacation, and I have too much time on my hands (since I can't run because of the plague (see title) ) and can actually type out all of the stuff in head.

Guess I should have warned you at the beginning of the post. :)

If you have any thoughts about the merging/non-merging, or anything, I would love to hear.


Tuesday, April 19, 2011

3 day weekend love!!

This week is school vacation week. (insert "Hallelujah Chorus") The school that my husband works at had an inservice day, which meant that he went in early and then got out at 2:00pm!! (His regular schedule is 2 - 10:30 pm.) We were so excited! After I got home, we got things ready and went to pick the boys up from daycare. They were pretty excited to see us both at the same time!

We went down to the major metropolis that houses the Target and SuperCuts. I got a new haircut that I love! A stacked bob, in case you are wondering.

We ate dinner at one of the best Chinese buffet places in Maine. Yummmmmmm.

Saturday was all about cleaning, running, and working. Well, my husband had to work. He picked up a few overtime hours. :)

Saturday night, however- not as fun. Soccer Boy (4 year old) had a croup episode complete with wheezing, and basically scaring the life out of his Mommy. Soccer Boy woke up feeling fine, but still had the cold, so we played it safe.  Since the doctor on call said he was most likely still contagious, and since Cuddle Bug (12.5 months) had ANOTHER cold, my husband stayed home with the boys and I set out for church and kids worship ministry practice by myself.

I was lost, lost, lost without having a toddler to chase after or a preschooler to remind not to talk during prayers!

I was in a rush to get home after the kids worhip practice, since we had our monthly prayer meeting that night. Oh my word, what a beautiful time of fellowship we had!! And our friends stayed extra late since Monday was a holiday!

Monday was Cuddle Bug's one year check up. I had figured he wouldn't get shots since he had a cold, but we love our Doctor, so we made an event of it.   Lunch at the restaurant all the Cool Families go to. Seriously. I ran into my friend Cathie while we were there!

Cuddle Bug.
His smile is so contagious!  At least in our house.

I just think his expression in this picture is hilarious. Can't you just hear him saying, "Mama, you're silly. I am so pretending I don't know you when I get the chance."  Just for the record- I get that look a lot, but usually from my high school students when they are trying not to laugh at me trying to make them laugh.

Daddy and Soccer Boy.  He may be the slowest eater on EARTH, but he is an amazing big brother!

And me, a picture that I actually kind of like, with my new haircut.

It was a really good thing that we didn't cancel the Doctors appointment, because little man has a double ear infection! :(  This time around, though, he is taking his antibiotics like a champ.  (insert big sigh of relief.)

Work, busy-ness, sickness and all?  We were together, and it was a great weekend.
(and a wonderful start to my Birthday Week!!)

Sunday, April 17, 2011

C25K Week 3 Day 1

Yesterday's run:
28 minutes. 1.7 miles.  9 minutes of running, 19 minutes of walking.

5 minute walk, (90 second run, 90 second walk, 3 minute run, 3 minute walk) repeat, 5 minute cool-down walk.

There are constant little hills on my road.  CONSTANT.  I remember this from the first time I tried to do C25K outside after  completing the first 4 weeks inside on an indoor track.   Between my lungs screaming at me from the extra exertion -

(I never had an issue with my lungs my first time through C25K -- I know now it is because I was not pushing myself for speed.  I am okay with that.  I just was so in awe that I got actually run (jog, shuffle) for increasing lengths of time, that I didn't care that I was about as fast as a tortoise.) --

and my left outer calf tightening up quite painfully, the last 3 minute segment,which happened to be all on an uphill grade, just about did me in.  I couldn't find a breathing rhythm, and I didn't have much left.

I stretched a lot when I got home.  Today, coming down the stairs was predictably painful, but my foot isn't bothering me too badly.

Because I over-pronate, and because essentially, I am doing speed drills, I can expect this type of muscle exhaustion.  But, I was NOT hydrated enough, which was definitely part of the issue.

I think that I am going to have to scout out some nice and FLAT places nearby.  :)

Wednesday, April 13, 2011

C25K Week 2 Day 3

I am just going to lay it all out there.


I had a fantastic conversation with my sister in law on Sunday evening, and we were talking about Heart Rate Monitors.  I have been aware, and even interested about the information that a HRM could provide.  In fact, I am desperately hoping that a Garmin Fairy (of the parental kind) visits me one week from tomorrow (my birthday), or earlier!  I am not picky!  So I know a little bit about heart rate zones.  I know there is a fat burning zone, and I know there is a cardiovascular health zone.    My sister in law is a runner. When she and her family moved to the hill country of Austin, Texas, and she started running on the the HILLS, imagine her shock when she started gaining weight.   She is a personal trainer, and she now refuses to train ANYONE unless they are using a heart rate monitor.

It really made me wonder if that is why when I first started C25K the first time I didn't lose an ounce?  Imagine with me, if you will, a one hundred pound overweight mama huffing and puffing through the intervals.  There really is a pretty good chance that my HR was out of control.

Whatever.  I survived, I got stronger.  I did it.

So...  This time around, I am pushing myself harder and REALLY FEELING it.  So, my brain is working, working, working on my run on Monday.  (The weather was gorgeous, by the way.)  When my legs start feeling fatigued (BECAUSE OF THE STUPID HILLS) and my lungs are working hard, I start entertaining the thought that maybe, just maybe, I am overtraining in terms of my HR.  

And then before I even FINISHED the thought, I was WALKING.  And it wasn't TIME yet.  Grrrr.

Lessons learned?
-Elevation uses different muscles than flat, flat, flat ground.  It is harder.  *facepalm*
-Advice and information is good.  Just getting out there and pushing myself to my limits is OH SO MUCH BETTER!   *facepalm*

Here is the map of my route from Monday.

'Cuz I KNOW you wanted to know.

Oh... and are we friends on DailyMile?  We should be.  You can tell me to get out of my head, and help me do the complicated math of trying to figure out how fast I was running if 9 ... um... 8 minutes was running and 21 minutes was walking....

And you can inspire me.
'Cuz I need that.
A lot.

And I also need it to STOP RAINING. 



Birthday Celebrations!

On Saturday we celebrated Cuddle Bug turning ONE with close family.  It was perfect!

Here are some pictures that I stole from my Dad's facebook profile.  I did take my own, but.....  I don't have my camera here and it takes way too long to upload!

  The cake that my sister and cousin intended for Cuddle Bug to eat/wear entirely by himself.  He was far too dainty.  After a couple of minutes, my mom couldn't take it, and took this cake and replaced it with a cupcake for the boy, and sliced the big cake up. I am glad she did, too --- Marble cake, chocolate frosting for the middle layer and then yummy flavored frosting on the outside.   He really let his Auntie down on this one.  Mommy is fine with that.  :)

He is just the cutest thing, don't you think?  I can't remember what he was doing at this point, whether he was just excited about something or what. He might have even been trying to wave to his Grampie.

I didn't even know this picture was being taken!! What a sweet shot of him looking back at this Mommy!   

And LOOK AT THIS TRACTOR!!!  Isn't it awesome!!  Right now he has NO clue how to ride it.  He sits on it and slides right off the back.  Hahaha.  But I am certain that when he gets more sturdy on his feet, he will do just fine!

Happy Birthday Party, Littlest Man!  I love you SO much!!

Friday, April 8, 2011

C25K Week 2 Day 2 --- DONE!

Oh yeah!

It's 10:50AM, on a Friday, and I have already finished my run for today!

It is the District Three Junior High Honors Festival today, and I have brought three of our music students to one of the bigger schools in our district for the day.  Last night, I mapmyrunned my course.  The school is located near a military base, so there a few culs-de-sac (yes... correct.  I learned this on Gilmore Girls.) available.  One of them was gated off, so I had to adjust my plan a little bit.

I did get as far this time... Right around two miles as opposed to 2.2 on Wednesday.  Who knows why.

Headphone Update:
They are still missing. I am still sad. I did, however, use my husbands reject skull-candy's.   After using them, I know why he puppy-dog face asked me for another pair.  They are  *cough* crap. *cough*
But, once I got them safe in the pocket of my vest and stopped fiddling with them, they worked adequately.  I ran today to PodRunner's 160 bpm podcast called Breezy.  It was really enjoyable. I wasn't calculating how long the song was, or anything like that.  It was nice.  I HAD intended to run to MotionTraxx's Tribal 5K podcast, which I had downloaded this morning from my iPod touch, and then I could not find it ANYWHERE on my iPod touch.  I could see it when my iPod was plugged in to the computer, but could not access it on my own.  *le sigh*

But all in all?
A day with internet access -- BONUS!  I wasn't expecting that they would give it to us.
A day with time to get my run in!
A day surrounded by other music teachers.
Hearing beautiful music all day!

A great day. :)

Have fun, everyone!

Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Couch to 5K, Week 2 and 49 Push-ups

Week 2:  5 minute warm-up, 90 second run, 2 minute walk,  (with a total of 6 run intervals) 5 minute cool down.

So - after only one day of week one, when my program was accidentally on week 2, I decided to go for it.
The second or third interval was the only one that I didn't finish, and I kept my pace strong and speedy during the rungs.  My lungs and legs were BURNING!!!  I was gasping for air, but making it a point to really breathe.  I forgot my headphones-- I don't actually know where they are-- and I ran to the sound of springtime and nature.  I really enjoyed it.  I don't know if it was better, worse, or just.... was.

That reminds me- I really want to find my headphones!

Anyway.  I mapped out my run on MapMyRun  and found that I had gone 2.2 miles in 29 minutes.  An AVERAGE pace of 13:19 a mile.  That is with 20 minutes of walking, 9 minutes of running.

You need to understand that a good, speedy pace for me last time around was 15 minute mile, for my running speed. Yes.  I have been thinking about this.  The first time through, I was just so grateful to be running (jogging.... er, shuffling) that I did whatever I could to be able to sustain the run, regardless of pace.  Now that I KNOW that I can run, I am PUSHING myself to my limits.  How AWESOME it feels.

And it was gorgeous out today!

So..... I cannot for the life of my think of the equation or setup I would need to figure out exactly how speedy my breath-taking running was.  Any clues?  Actually, I kind of just realized that they are BOTH variables, so there is no way to know for sure.

(I really want a Garmin.)

So- I felt pretty awesome after my run today.  Psyched to do it again.  I just don't know when-- probably I will bring my running stuff on Friday when I take three of our music students to a festival.  I will sneak out for a run when they are rehearsing, maybe?  *shrug* We'll see.

OH--  I did 49 push-ups today too.   Did I mention that I am following the 100 Push-up plan?  This was week 2 day 1, following the middle plan.  I did 5 sets of push-ups.  9, 11, 8, 8, and 13.

Yeah, I felt like beast (in a good way) after I was finished.

A beast with jello arms.


Monday, April 4, 2011

I need a mental overhaul...

I was in a groove.  I was excited to exercise.  I was making good food choices.

And then the scale went UP.
(And I did contortions and made it only go up enough that I could log my weight as staying the same. -- I have an older dial type scale.  Those crazy things work!)

And I got mad.
And then I exercised more... and it hurt.
A lot.
So I let my body recover a bit...  but really, it was that life (read: exhaustion) got in the way.

I suppose that there really is a limit to how many days in a row you can get up before 5AM and stay up until close to 11PM -- and then not even get unbroken sleep (thanks to a brand new one year old) during those scant 5 and a half hours.  It makes sense that things were falling apart like they were.

Moderation has ALWAYS been a problem for me.
That's why I cut off TV.  I start watching one show, I see previews for another, and then soon I have 8 shows a week that I am rushing the kids into bed for and trying to get caught up on.  Wow.  How on EARTH did I do that???

Oh... yeah. I didn't blog.  HA!
Oh yeah... I didn't have a newborn/now one year old until April 4th of last year.

I need to find a balance.
I need to set up a tentative plan, but have the grace with myself for the days that it doesn't happen.

Today, I was totally ready to run my C25K workout.
Freezing rain.
(I don't have a treadmill, or a gym membership. Not complaining.  Just sayin'.)

And.... it was my littlest boys special day.  So I wanted to spend as much time with him as possible, so I opted to just pick him and big brother up from daycare on the way home from work, rather than stopping at home first to do a Leslie Sansone walking workout.

And... yes - I realize that I could be working out right now... but I am blogging.
Sigh.  I don't think that is a problem, yet.  I think that I am working through some very important things here.

1. It is depressing how much FOOD is the focal point of happy occasions and celebrations.  Cake is like the main deal for birthdays.  Cuddle Bug turned ONE, for crying out loud.  The cake was for US.
(And it will be again for my husband before he goes to work tomorrow, and for me and Soccer Boy after dinner tomorrow....)  

2. I have trigger .... um... everythings.  Trigger foods, trigger situations, trigger emotions... you name it.

3. I get frustrated with our financial situation, and our current schedule.  I would love to be the one that did the grocery shopping, but it doesn't work out that way.  I would love for us to always be able to have fresh romaine lettuce, and other vegetables on hand.  I would love for mornings not to be a frantic mess while I try to let my husband get a little more sleep before wake him up to watch the boys as I leave.  I would love for evenings not to be so lonely... just me and the little guys until 10:30pm.  (Hence the up until 11pm most nights...)

4. I eat. Just to eat.  I know that I am not hungry, but I eat anyway.  It infuriates me.
(Enter self-loathing.)

5. I do not believe in myself. I am SCARED TO DEATH of failing at the C25K this second time around.
(I haven't even allowed myself to THINK that... and there it is... right out there in the open.  Wow.)

6.  I am tired. I am tired of not liking the way my clothes fit.  I am tired of hating pictures of myself.  I am tired of.... this cycle.


So. Maybe getting this out there will be all I need.
Maybe hitting publish on this will spur me right into doing the next day of my 100 pushups workout.  Maybe it will get me up and moving for my daily exercise.

Or maybe I will snuggle with my birthday baby, and realize that being their Mommy is more important than agonizing over bad choices. Maybe I could turn them into my motivation for good choices.

I don't know if the desperation is coming through, but it is definitely there.  If you have been there, and can relate- then please-- consider some encouragement.  I am feeling that alone in a crowd feeling, if you know what I mean!


Happy 1st Birthday, Cuddle Bug!

Last year, on April 4th, 2010, we were celebrating the Resurrection with our church family, at the early service at our church.  I was 38 and 6/7 weeks pregnant.  I was miserable.

Don't let the smile fool you!!  I felt like a big pink elephant!!  But, my son looked cute, and my husband looked handsome, and I am SO glad that we got this picture!! I never dreamed that very day we would become a family of four!

There I am, shortly after my very quick, very intense labor.  Cuddle Bug was ready, that is for sure!

The above picture is when we was a few weeks old.  Cutie pie.  :)  His hair was so thick, and so dark at first!  It thinned out quite a bit for a long time, and only recently has thickened back up, lightened up, and become curly!!

Soccer Boy adores his little brother!! And I must say, it is completely mutual!  Is there anything better than watching your children fall in love with each other??

There is our little man. getting waaaaay too big for his car seat!  Now that he is walking a little bit more consistently, and he is officially one year old, I feel like we are  ready to do the switch.

My sweet little Cuddle Bug, my Goober Baby, my 40 Pound Sack of Potatoes...
This year has been amazing, and challenging, and wonderful and sad all at the same time.  Parenting a second, or subsequent child is a much different experience.  The learning curve is different.  We knew what to do when you had gas, a cold, wouldn't burp.  We knew that things that freaked us out the first time around were normal.  We knew that this time would pass SO quickly, so we tried to savor every moment...

But here we are, a year later already.
I love you so much, Little Man!  I am so excited to see you develop more skills and more personality.  I cannot imagine our family without, and I thank God every day for YOU, knowing that the pain and suffering of the baby we lost before you (ectopic pregnancy, April - July 2010), led us to holding YOU. Every smile, every laugh, every moment that I gaze upon your sleeping face, a part of me is healed.

Happy Birthday, Cuddle Bug!  May this year be filled with love, fun and excitement!!!

Mommy loves you.


Saturday, April 2, 2011

UBP11! Fun, fun fun!

Ultimate Blog Party 2011Welcome!  (for those who are stopping by from the Ultimate Blog Party)
I was so excited to learn about the Ultimate Block Party 2011!   If you are a regular visitor, maybe you'll learn something new about me!

My name is Meredith, and I have two adorable sons.  My baby, Cuddle Bug, is turning one in 3 days!  Eeek!  Time goes by so fast!  My oldest,  Soccer Boy, is 4 1/2 and will be coming to Mommy's school with me next year as a BIG KINDERGARTENER.  (Wow, that word looks weird when you see it written. Doesn't sound weird, though.  So... pretend you didn't see it.)

My husband and I have been married almost 9 years, and we have had quite the journey.  But thinking about what is happening right now (think really, really big) and looking back at all of the ..... turmoil, roller coaster, living on the edge of your seat drama we have had, it all makes sense.  The scary part is seeing how much further we still have to go!!

Quick bulleted list of Meredith.

1. I am the band director for a small community in Maine. I absolutely adore my job, and I truly consider it to be my mission field, even though it is in a public school, and I am not allowed to speak His name.   But I pray, and I love, and I pour my heart out to these kids, and God keeps filling it back up!

2. I love Maine! I have lived here my entire life!

3.  I started running using the Couch to 5K method shortly after Cuddle Bug was born.  I love it. I lost MOST of my strength and endurance over the winter, because we had the winter of ALL winter, plus an injury, plus a month long sickness.  So I just started over again, and will be pushing myself to speed up this time around!

4.  I love to sing.  Love, love, love to sing.

5. Yes, I can play every band instrument, and lots of others, too.

6. I gave up television at the start of this school year, and it was the best decision ever!

7. I hate the materialism of Christmas and birthdays. But at the same time I really struggle with wanting STUFF. (my latest obsession isn't my fault!!  If my nike + sensor hadn't DIED on me, I wouldn't be trolling the internet comparing Garmin FR60 plus footpod with the Garmin 205, 305, 405, 210....  or even a new ANDROID phone so that I can use the free imapmyrun app with the GPS.  If my nike+ worked, I wouldn't be doing any of this!!!   (You don't really believe that, do you?)

8.  I have an over-zealous need to punctuate in an excited fashion.  I over use exclamation points, and smiley faces, and the-like.

9. This blog is where I write about my life in general, but with a special emphasis on my journey to health.  (A long journey....  UGH.)   I have another blog where I write about what the Lord is doing in my life, and what He is revealing to me through my Bible study and prayer time.  (That blog is

I cannot wait to go through and start following some of you amazing ladies in the linky!
Happy UBP11, Everyone!!!

---  Meredith