The first eight days of January, the kids were still on Winter Break. We tried to do one fun thing every day whether that was swimming after I was done teaching a class or making a trip to the library. We had some cold days over the break and people were getting a little stir-crazy so we did a bunch of relay races in the basement to burn off energy. We called it “indoor field day.”
Another day we did the Magic School Bus volcano experiment Ellen got for Christmas. Ellen sat in a box from Costco and called it her Magic School Bus.
Her reaction to the volcano was priceless.
The day before school started, we went to Golden Sweets and treated ourselves to some ice cream thanks to a giftcard from my brother.
Once the kids were back in school, things warmed up for a bit which was good for our 50K training. Thanks to the bipolar weather in Colorado we’ve been able to hit actual trails some weeks. (Although there have also been a fair amount road runs and the dreaded treadmill runs.)
Noel went to Atlanta for a conference for a few days. This was a few weeks before the Super Bowl and while the government was still shut down so the town and airport were a bit crazy.
Several months ago, one of our neighborhood parks got a makeover. They finished it (at least it seemed like it) and then left it all fenced up for months. Every time we drove by the kids would lament about how they couldn’t wait to go try it out. One day I was driving to work and did a double take – the fence was down. It wasn’t terribly warm and there was still snow on the ground, but we headed there as soon as the kids were done with school.
When Noel got back from Georgia, we . . . did more running! One of the nice things about where we live is that they have a “trail” network (it’s wide sidewalks) that they plow so you can often run within a day or so after a snow. On one of our runs we ran into an elk herd.
One of the days it snowed, Cooper made this little Olaf.
Cooper checked out a book about Star Wars and coding from the library. When I told him Noel does a lot of coding for his job he was shocked and awed. The two of them had some great father bonding time.
We tried to go snowshoeing one weekend. It was kind of a disaster. We ran into a white out caused by high winds and ended up turning around. We went to where there was less snow and went on short hike in the snow instead.
One Sunday, we came home from church and Ellen changed into this outfit. We said it was a little cold for shorts and she said, “I’m just being me” and then struck this pose. Such personality this one.
We’ve had several decent snows. It’s testing my winter driving anxiety, but I know we need the snow. (I keep telling myself that in hopes I’ll hate it less, ha.) In an attempt to not be a total grump about it, we went to the park nearest our house and did some sledding. Cooper had fun, Ellen, well . . .
And sometimes we just snuggle up with a good book and dream about spring.
Ellen got to lead the pledge of allegiance one morning over the school intercom. She picked her outfit with great care. We also made a special effort to make it to school on time. We’re thinking they should ask her to do it every day as it was very motivating for her to get out of bed. The secretary said it was adorable.
Later in the month, Noel and I did . . . even more running! We both got some new kicks. Mine are especially flashy which I love.
On this run, we just saw disobedient geese. At this point, 5-6 miles feels like a regular run and our longest run has been 14 miles. We need to keep pushing it up though. I really think one of the most important parts about training for something this crazy is staying healthy. We’re already starting to feel aches creep in. I’ve been babying my knees and trying to convince myself I can’t go all out in every class I teach and run three times a week and expect my knees to not protest. I’m trying to listen to my body and demo more things and then walk around. Really trying.
And in case you were worried we’re just crazy health nuts around here, our love of baking continues. This is a cinnamon star bread I made. It actually was less difficult than I thought it would be, but looks quite impressive.