Saturday, July 31, 2010

Playing With Trains

Last night and into this morning I put together Davey and Jonathan's train set so that they could come upstairs and play for awhile with it. This train set is reserved as a special treat for them because it takes so much effort to put it up and take it down and there is no good place to leave it up permanently.

So of course, I took pictures of my awesome train set and Jon playing with it. Unfortunately, my camera died before Davey had his turn, but maybe I can snap a few pictures of him playing tomorrow.

Happy Birthday Meredith!

My baby has turned one.

The vet estimated her at 28 weeks when I first got her back in February and so I just picked a random date to celebrate her birthday.

Yesterday, I baked her Peanut Butter Dog Biscuits, bought her a nice big bone to chew on, and baked cupcakes. The peanut butter dog biscuits seemed to be a hit, although I wish they had been crunchier. They turned out more like cookies and the crumbled all over the place when she ate her first one. I think at some point I will try a different recipe and see if I can get something a little crunchier for her.

Just a few pics of Meredith enjoying her bone :)

Couch to 5k- Week 2:Day 1

I just completed the Couch to 5k Week2, Day 1!

The weather was pretty much awesome for a run this morning. It was just under 80 degrees, not humid at all, and there was a cool breeze that felt WONDERFUL! Meredith joined me again this morning for my run and actually was quite helpful in keeping me moving.

I have been using the podcasts from Running Into Shape and I have to commend them for making this week's podcast. It picked me up with Gonna Make You Sweat (aka Everybody Dance Now) by CC Music Factory right when I needed it to. I have found a couple more podcasts that I may try out later in the week to have something to mix it up.

Today I didn't find it as hard to breathe during my running sessions as I did last week. Last week I was practically gasping for breath when my running sessions were over. I am glad that I am already seeing some progress and improvements!

One thing I am thinking about it potentially picking back up my 2-3 mile walks on the days that I am not running. I find myself wanting to go out and run on the days that I am not scheduled to do so but I am keeping myself from doing that right now. I don't want to do too much too fast. The walks in between may also help with the soreness in my calves... I hope :)

Friday, July 30, 2010

It's amazing what you can accomplish

It's amazing what you can accomplish when you don't have all that pesky school work getting in the way! Last night I enjoyed making dinner (taco salad) for the Coles and also baking an apple pie.

This morning I have already done so much and I even slept in later than I normally do!
I vacuumed the living room and my room (as the dog hair is extremely pesky), watered the plants, taken care of the dogs, folded and put away three loads of laundry, picked up a little around my room, unloaded and reloaded the dishwasher, and baked Meredith birthday cupcakes :)

I do still have to go to Greenville a little later on today to sell back some books and reflect on my stimulated teaching experience (which went well, I don't remember if I have updated on this yet?).

Tonight the family is coming over for homemade pizza! I also am baking Meredith some puppy biscuits later for her birthday. Yes, my dog is spoiled :)

Wednesday, July 28, 2010

Couch to 5k- Week 1:Day 3

Today's run was BRUTAL. I thought that these runs would continue to get a little easier...and that was wishful thinking! My calves have never hurt so bad, and it got worse during my first couple of runs. I thought for sure my calves were going to burst wide open. Today, it was hot... very very hot. I decided to go ahead and run because it was only about 82 degrees, but it was way hotter if you factored in the humidity. I am very much looking forward to a two day hiatus between weeks.

Meredith joined me again today and it was a lot easier to manage her since she had a leash on her this time. I wasn't so worried about her getting run over, and that is definitely a good thing.

Week 2 is not going to be so much fun:

Brisk five-minute warmup walk. Then alternate 90 seconds of jogging and two minutes of walking for a total of 20 minutes.

Monday, July 26, 2010

1st semester of grad school almost complete!

This weekend was full of homework and even fuller of avoiding homework :) I had to do a massive amounts of work on my unit and plan for my stimulated teaching today. Let's just say had I actually paced myself with this unit, it wouldn't have been so bad, but my procrastinating ways got the best of me (and I had been doing so well with the whole keeping myself ahead of the game thing). I had three lessons to do, two lessons to correct, a unit rationale to write, a pre-test, a post-test, worksheets, assignments, and so on and so forth... blah blah blah. I found myself often doing everything BUT working on my unit: going to the movies, cleaning, doing laundry, going for a run, lunch with my parents, orientation at AE, watching the boys, etc.

Even though I procrastinated a LOT this weekend, I did manage to successfully get my unit completed last night and then this morning I worked with a fury to make all of the copies needed for my stimulated teaching

For my stimulated teaching, I did a lesson on existentialism. I had my "students" do part of a webquest, then I did a prezi presentation (a pretty awesome one if I do say so myself), and then began The Stranger with them. At first I know I said waaaay too many "uh"s but I got the hang of it again eventually. I think overall it went well and I am REALLY glad that this semester is almost over. I just have a behavior project to do, some computer work, and two tests and I am DONE until August 24th. Summer break, here I come!

Couch to 5k- Week 1:Day 2

So I just completed day 2 of the couch to 5k day and I feel great! My "brisk" walks were a little brisk-ier and I could definitely tell that it was easier to get through those 60 second runs.

I did have the added challenge today of keeping two unleashed dogs (one of which was my own) from getting run over. Last run, Molly (the neighbor's dog) and Maggie (my Aunt's dog) followed me but they kept out of the road for the most part. Tonight, Meredith was out playing in the yard and I was hoping to sneak away unnoticed, and I failed miserably. When I was just far enough away from the house that it was too late to turn back, I hear her barking and running after me and with her came Molly. I am not too terribly fond of Molly, but I still don't want to see her get hurt. It was because of these two mischief makers that I inadvertently missed one of my running sections :( But I think I more than made up with it in my progress with the other running sections. In run 7 I really found my stride and was going at it pretty good :)

After my last run, my calf muscles have been pretty sore and I have a sore on my right side of my stomach, but I figure that they will work themselves out with time. I can already feel the pain in my calves returning. I should probably buy some muscle rub :)

Overall, I am proud of my progress and hope it continues!

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Couch to 5k- Week 1:Day 1

I have done it. I started the Couch to 5k program. Basically I walked for a five minute warm-up, I "ran" for 60 seconds, walked for 90 seconds, did the 60-90 thing 8 times, and cooled down with a 5 minute cool down. It doesn't SOUND hard, it sounds totally do-able, but let me give you the real scoop.

I haven't really RUN since I was a sophomore in high school and I was in weight training. I have walked, I have jogged, and I have pretended to run, but I haven't run since I was forced to 6 years ago. For the first time in 6 years, I ran for 8 minutes. Granted, they weren't consecutive minutes. Granted, 8 minutes isn't a long time. Granted, a turtle probably could have passed me. But the fact remains, I ran 8 minutes.

Thankfully, my sister found these awesome podcasts that tell you when to walk and when to jog so that I wasn't having to focus on that. However, the flip side to not paying attention to the time is that it gives you the ability to solely focus all of your attention on the fact that your calves are burning, you are drenched in sweat, and you aren't quite sure if your feet are still attached to your body or not.

Don't get me wrong, I feel very, very accomplished right now, but this is going to be one loooong road from couch to 5k.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

A healthier diet....

I went grocery shopping yesterday and only bought healthy food. I want to eat better and live better so in addition to the Couch to 5k that I blogged about earlier, I am going to really focus on living and eating healthier. With that in mind, look at ll the yumminess I have to look forward to!

fresh pineapple, cantaloupe, strawberries, blueberries, kiwis, and apples

baby spinach leaves, carrots, broccoli, tomatoes, bell peppers, mushrooms,
avocados, cucumbers, crumbled feta cheese
and some awesome looking sun dried tomato feta cheese dressing!

Doesn't it look awesome?

Friday, July 16, 2010

I'm going to do it....

I found this really cool program called Couch to 5k and I am going to do it! I think it will help me along with my (long term) goal of running a half marathon one day. The program is a nine week program and by the end of it, I SHOULD be able to run 3 miles, which is a LOT more than I can do right now. If I can do this 3 miles, then I will be a quarter of the way to my long term goal... not too shabby. If I start this week, I should be done with the couch t0 5k by the middle of September. If I can make that benchmark, I would like to try to be at 6 miles at the end of the year.

This will be my workout routine for the next week. I will need to do this 3 times in the next week...

* Brisk five-minute warmup walk. Then alternate 60 seconds of jogging and 90 seconds of walking for a total of 20 minutes.

Wish me luck!

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The oh-so anticipated grad school update

So I know that I promised an update on grad school like weeks ago, but life has been so busy! I am commuting to Greenville 4-5 days a week (read 3ish hours every single day of commuting) and by the time I get home from school, I am just plain exhausted.

The classes themselves are going pretty well and I am keeping ahead of the game for the most part. I am still bitter about the fact that I have to take a computer competency course. Let's face it, I am the most computer literate person I know almost (with the exception of a few tech geeks of course). I am also taking "The Learner and the Learning Environment" aka... Educational Psychology which I have already taken as an undergrad at Meredith. We learned the same material and used the same textbook so for the most part, that class is a piece of cake. I have some issues related to that class, but I am just not going to go into those at this point.

My last class is "The Teacher and the Teaching Environment" aka... Teaching Methods and I am absolutely LOVING this class. Dr. Guidry is so dynamic and easy to listen to. I feel that I have already learned more from his class alone than I did in all of my teacher education that I did at Meredith and I was in their program my entire undergrad career! He is so purposeful in everything that he does and he truly wants to teach us to be effective educators. Currently for his class I am designing a mini-unit on The Stranger and I am pretty stoked about it.

Overall, I think that this program at ECU will prepare me better for being an educator. They are extremely honest with you about their expectations, and they don't seem to dance around things but rather come at them head-on.

Anyways, I will update more about my personal life hopefully within the next few days, but as for now, it's time for lunch!

Sunday, July 11, 2010

a lesson to be learned

I need to learn to let things go.

I tend to hold onto things from the past, things that I cannot control. I know that there are actually a lot of people who struggle with letting things go, but I think that my life would be much better if I learned to just "get over it". There are things that happened several years ago that I am still holding onto the resentment from the situation. This has been something that I find myself constantly struggling with. The thing is, I realize that I am in a far better place in my life now than what I would be had that situation not happened. I am exactly where I need to be right now and yet I cannot let go of the anger that I still hold from the events that happened. While there is one situation in particular that I am thinking about, I can see the same theme recurring in various situations. So with all of this in mind, I am working towards a new mindset of "Let it go."

Saturday, July 10, 2010

New Collar

Meredith will soon be sporting this new beauty

Lucky Fiona Custom Dog Collar...The Hootie Hoo

because she won the friend of Fiona photo contest a few weeks ago. Such a cute collar for her to wear in the fall!