May 31, 2012

Running Playlist

It's amazing the difference a great playlist will make when running...not that I'm anywhere near an expert or anything. Just my experience. I'm really starting to (FINALLY) see some progress. Check out my awesome playlist...

Beyonce...Run The World
Blink 182...All The Small Things
Bon Jovi...Living on A Prayer
Carrie Underwood...Cowboy Cassanova
Christina Aguilera...Fighter
David Guetta...Without You
Dead or Alive...You Spin Me Round
Def Leppard...Pour Some Sugar On Me
Eminem...Not Affraid
Katy Perry...Last Friday Night
Katy Perry...Firework
Katy Perry...The One That Got Away
Kings of Leon...Sex on Fire
Kings of Leon...Use Somebody
Kings of Leon...Be Somebody
Kelly Clarkson...Stronger
Kelly Clarkson...The war is over
Ke$ha...Take It Off
Ke$ha...Tik Tok
KSM...I want you to want me
Lady Gaga...The Edge of Glory
LMFAO...Sexy And I Know It
Madonna...Like A Prayer
Miley Cyrus...The Climb
Pink...Raise your glass
Twisted Sister...We're Not Going to Take It
Van Halen....You Really Got Me
White Stripes...Seven Nation Army
Whitesnake...Here I Go Again

May 30, 2012

Ooooo-klahoma...where the wind comes sweeping down the plain

We had a very exciting evening last night. It started when the tornado sirens went off just as we were starting dinner. The news wasn't showing anything but we pulled up the weather radar and there was a nasty storm on it's way with rotation. Because we live in a rural area, our local meteorologists don't always interrupt the broadcast to tell us exactly what's going on but living in Oklahoma, you have a pretty good idea of what to look out for when the sirens go off. So, while we waited for Gary England (our local go-to weather guy) to explain the situation, we threw a collar on the dog, packed up the laptops, my camera, some diapers and put shoes on everyone all within about five minutes and all while still eating dinner. There's a sense of pride in the ability to get everything that matters most together and ready to run into the storm shelter in a matter of minutes that comes with living in this area of the country.

Thankfully we never ended up needing to go to our trusty "safe place" but there was some really beautiful rotation and some down right crazy hail. 

Crazy strong rotation that never fully developed.

After the first to softball sized hail.

The boy and all the kids in the neighborhood made the rounds to gather the biggest pieces. This wasn't the largest (and it had melted a bit before I got a pic) but it was his favorite.

Even the boy was getting into the "cool clouds" and it provided a great teaching opportunity. So today, we're going to the Science Museum to learn more about tornadoes and all things weather before more storms break out this afternoon.

May 28, 2012

Memorial Day

Today has different meaning for me than ever before. Last year it frightened me. This year it humbles me. My husband came home from his deployment but 14 other soldiers from Oklahoma's 45th did not. 

* Second Lt. Jered W. Ewy, 33, of Edmond, on June 29

* Spc. Augustus J. Vicari, 22, of Broken Arrow, on July 29

* Staff Sgt. Kirk Avery Owen, 37, of Sapulpa, on Aug. 2

* Sgt. Anthony Del Mar Peterson, 24, of Chelsea, on Aug. 4

* Second Lt. Joe L. Cunningham, 27, of Kingston, on Aug. 13

* Lt. Damon Leehan, 30, of Moore, on Aug. 14

* Spc. Joshua Michael Seals, 21, of Porter, on Aug. 16

* Pfc. Tony J. Potter Jr., 20, of Okmulgee, on Sept. 9

* Spc. Christopher D. Horton, 26, of Collinsville, on Sept. 9

* Sgt. Bret D. Isenhower, 26, of Lamar, on Sept. 9

* Sgt. Mycal L. Prince, 28, of Minco, on Sept. 15

* Spc. Francisco J. Briseno-Alvarez Jr., 27, of Oklahoma City, on Sept. 25

* Pfc. Sarina Butcher, 19, of Checotah, on Nov. 1

* Spc. Chris Gailey, 26, of Ochelata, on Nov. 1 

We will never forget them or their families. 

Please remember that today is about them and all the other men and women who gave their lives for our country.

May 25, 2012

Friday Fun

I've been a bit (ok, more than a bit) MIA this week. Lots and lots of craziness. Playdates, friends leaving for Africa, T-ball parent's informational meeting (totally uninformative btw), training for the half marathon, reconnecting with an old friend and about a dozen other things that I can't even remember right now. Anyway, I've been unavailable when it comes to blogging...replying to comments...reading other blogs...all of that fun stuff so I plan to take some time on this fabulous long weekend to sit at my computer and have some me time. But now is sadly not that time. The boy is going to my parents for the I have to go pack his monster (it really is a and everything) suitcase. I'll just leave you with some fun pics from one of this week's playdates at the zoo...

I made her dress and we bought the Minnie ears (through the Disney Store) from Disney World...saw them the last time we went but forgot to pick up a pair...put her hair in pigtails and then clipped the ears  on. 

I know. She's adorable.

He LOVES her!

Our little Turtle (the boy's nickname) in front of the turtle exhibit.

My blue-eyed babies...if only they'd look at ME and my camera when they smile but no, that's not their style.

Ok. So this isn't technically a great pic but I love it because it's us. And it's real. The boy was concerned I'd let him fall backwards into the water (thanks for the vote of confidence kid) and the girl was annoyed at the sun (SO my daughter-you rarely see me without sun glasses or a hat unless like here it's for a picture).

Hope you had a great week and an equally wonderful long weekend. Let us always remember the reason for the holiday and those who gave everything so we could be free. 

May 21, 2012

Disney World Height Restrictions/Requirements

(photo credit:

Whenever I go looking for Disney World height restrictions (which is more often than I'd like to admit because I have a terrible memory for such things), I usually find them listed first by park and then by size which probably saves room on a page and works if you're only doing one or two parks but for us, it just seems backwards so I thought I'd fix the problem and list out the attraction height requirements how I would want to see them...first by size and then by location.

Keep in mind there are DOZENS of attractions that children and adults of all ages, sizes and thrill tolerances can enjoy so don't let having a child who's small stop you from going if you really want to. Check out some (hopefully) super helpful tips for going to Disney World with an infant or small child HERE. Before we get into it, the big height milestones at Disney are 40, 44 and 48 inches respectively but there are a few attractions that fall above or below those marks.

32 Inches (and above)

Magic Kingdom
Ride (with someone who is over 52 inches) the Tomorrowland Indy Speedway Cars

Blizzard Beach:
Chair Lift

35 Inches (and above)

Magic Kingdom:
Barnstormer with the Great Goofini (formerly Goofy's Barnstormer)

Disney Quest (at Downtown Disney):
Pirates of the Caribbean: Battle for Buccaneer Gold (cross between an arcade and a virtual reality experience)

38 Inches (and above)

Animal Kingdom:
Kali River Rapids (children who are just over the 38" requirement will be required to sit a special seat that has both the lap belt and a pull down hard brace for them to hold onto)

40 Inches (and above)

Magic Kingdom:
Splash Mountain
Big Thunder Mountain
Stitch's Great Escape

Test Track

Hollywood Studios:
Twilight Zone Tower of Terror
Star Tours

Animal Kingdom:

44 Inches (and above)

Magic Kingdom:
Space Mountain

Mission: SPACE

Animal Kingdom:
Expedition Everest

48 Inches (and above)

Hollywood Studios:
Rock 'n' Roller Coaster

Animal Kingdom:
Primeval Whirl

Blizzard Beach:
Slush Gusher
Summit Plummet
Downhill Double Dipper

Typhoon Lagoon:
Crush 'n' Gusher
Humunga Kowabunga

Disney Quest:
Mighty Ducks Pinball Slam

51 Inches (and above)

Disney Quest:
Buzz Lightyear's Astroblaster
Cyber Space Mountain

52 Inches (and above)

Magic Kingdom:
Drive the Tomorrowland Indy Speedway Cars

May 18, 2012

Friday Fun

I thought I'd start doing a quick weekly fun post on Fridays-not that all my posts aren't fun ;)

Most of the time I suspect it'll just be obnoxious charming Mommy Moments and picture highlights from the week.

This week's Mommy Moment came on Wednesday evening when we allowed our children to do something some may find to be irresponsible or flat out wrong...which is fine...we LOVED it. And for the record, we used my Suburban and Joshua's Jetta to block off the street and Joshua was never more than two feet away-just enough to be out of the picture frame.

Yes. We let our soon-to-be 4 year old pull his 10 month old (TODAY!) little sister in our bike trailer. That's how we roll.

May 17, 2012

Home for TWO Months!

Joshua came home two months ago today. It's a little surreal. In many ways the deployment feels like it was just yesterday but it was such a different day-to-day life that in some ways it really was a lifetime ago. 

Something I once heard in a child development class (I majored in child development if you didn't know-talk about a lifetime ago!) about itty bitty babies is that until they're 8 or 9 months old, they've spent more time in the womb than outside it. I know it's a simple, obvious statement but it really impacted me and it's changed the way I parent. Although we strongly believe in attachment parenting, I'm not big on advertising or preaching it because I don't think it's the only way to successfully parent. It's just the way that works best for us. All that to say, I'm beginning to view the deployment in a similar context. Joshua was gone for 13 months total and it may take us...or at least me...13 months to fully process all that happened in that time.

I don't mean to sound overly dramatic. I'm just the sort of person that needs time and space to really process big events in my life. I can be spontaneous...heck, we eloped but then it's almost like what happens in those times of spontaneity aren't fully real until I can find a quiet corner to process it. I'm probably not making any sense whatsoever but that's ok...nothing new there. What is new, and I attribute it mostly to the deployment, is that I'm much more ok with not making sense. I've always been a people pleaser-concerned with how I looked, both physically and intellectually but with the deployment came a sort of devil-may-care attitude. The insensitive and downright rude things people would ask or say hardened me. Ironically, as much as the deployment hardened me, I also think it softened me. I'm more aware of my weakness. I'm more aware of the things that matter most. And I'm more likely to talk about admit, without shame, my weaknesses and to embrace the things and people I love. 

Deployment sucked. I hated every minute of it but I'm thankful for the things it taught me about myself, my marriage, my family, my friends...every aspect of our lives was crystallized. For that, I'm thankful.

May 15, 2012

Animal Kingdom in a Day

A family friend (and former boss) is starting to plan their first vacation to Disney World. School and work schedules mean that they'll only have 4 days in the parks and one of her first questions was how much time should she spend in each park. Of course it's a subjective question and depends greatly on who is going and how long you plan to be in the parks but I figured I would break down our preferences and why they are our preferences in the hopes that it helps you. The park that most people think of as the easiest to get through quickly is Animal Kingdom and for the most part I agree but the tricky thing about Animal Kingdom is that it's the first park to close each day (with the exception of when one of the other parks is having a special event in the evening like Mickey's Not So Scary Halloween Party). Animal Kingdom will close as early as 5pm especially in the fall and winter.

The first thing we do if we think we'll only have a day in Animal Kingdom is try and go on a day that has a morning extra magic hour at Animal Kingdom. 

*Extra magic hours are extra park hours available ONLY to guests staying at an official Disney-owned Resort. One park per day will EITHER open an hour early or stay open up to three hours late.

Generally speaking we avoid morning extra magic hours because A-we're not morning people-none of us. Not. At. All. and B-the park which has extra magic hours (either morning or evening) is usually the busiest throughout the day. So, if we do use extra magic hours, it's night time extra magic hours and we will often not go to that park during the day but rather spend our day elsewhere and then hop over (got to love those park hopper tickets) to the park with the evening extra magic hours just as it is closing to the general public. 

The reason we go to Animal Kingdom on an extra magic hour morning is simple. The safari. The animals are fed early in the day and so they are much more active AND the lines are almost non-existent...especially if you arrive just as the park is opening and go straight back to the safari. The last time we did this we ended up stopped THREE times because of animals in the road. We got to see a couple rhinos apparently fighting over who got to eat first. Good times.

Something else we do on an Animal Kingdom day is book a breakfast at the Tusker House for Donald's Safari takes time not eating at the resort before going to the parks so I don't often recommend it when time is limited but we do it because it's one of very few places where you are guaranteed to find Daisy...our son has been in love with Daisy for YEARS!

(his reaction the first time he had to say goodbye to Daisy)

Moving on, after the extra magic hour safari (and possibly breakfast with Donald), we usually head to the back of the park, pick up fast passes (if available) for Kali River Rapids (you will get soaked!-but it's a blast). Kali has one of the shortest height requirements at Disney World-just 38". Once we have either ridden, picked up fast passes or both (because if it doesn't have a line to start with, it will!-especially later in the afternoon) we move onto Expedition Everest.

 Expedition Everest is Animal Kingdom's big roller coaster. It's still fairly easy for us to get on because neither of our kids is big enough to go on it yet (44" minimum requirement). Until the boy is big enough, Joshua and I have to take turns going alone while the other waits with the kids so we just use the single rider line option. You (most likely) won't get to sit in the very front seat if you go through the single rider line...unless you luck out like I did once. The single rider entrance is to the right of both the main stand by and fastpass lines. Also tucked in the corner is a train car so if you're larger and concerned about not fitting into the seat, you can test it out on the side without the fear of embarrassment of finding out you don't fit after waiting in line.
(that's me in the second row on the left...another upside to not being able to ride together is that Joshua and I can take each other's pics coming down the mountain)

The other big ride type of attraction we like to do while at Animal Kingdom is Dinosaur. It can be and often is very frightening for small children as it's in the dark and you're being chased by dinosaurs. It's jarring and jerky but it's also one of my personal favorite rides. There's a great gift shop outside Dinosaur (as with most of the big attractions at Disney-they're not fools...they will do all they can to get your money) where parents of smaller children can wait for the rest of their party. Dinosaur has a 40" height requirement (the boy will be going on it for the first time this fall!).
(in line to ride Dinosaur)

Animal Kingdom has a couple shows that are must dos in addition to the rides I already mentioned. It's Tough To Be A Bug is a great 3D attraction that we love to do whenever we have the time (just know that they use a machine that blows various scents in the theater to go with the show-including a certain stink bug scent and if you have bad asthma, you may have a problem). The best advice when it comes to attraction wait times I can tell you is to get a Disney World wait time app. Verizon is the only company with an official Disney wait time app but there's dozens out there. We have Verizon so I can't speak for anything but the official app which is simply called "Disney Parks" and has an icon of the Mickey Sorcerer hat and has always been accurate for us. The other show isn't a "just fit it in when you have time" sort of show. The Finding Nemo Musical will take a chunk of your time away. It's a 45 minute show and you'll need to find the theater about 30 minutes early in order to have a good seat. For these reasons, we didn't do the Nemo Show until about three ago and now it's a must do. It's Broadway caliber with excellent acting and brilliant design. Go see it!!!

The only thing I would absolutely say to avoid when your on a tight schedule is Rafiki's Planet Watch. It doesn't come close to making out must do list anyway (again, just our opinions) but in order to get to it, you have to take the Wildlife Express Train and it can be a challenge if you have a stroller (must be left or folded-Disney's rental strollers do not fold...go HERE to see my recommendations for strollers and a bunch of other infant/small children tips at Disney World). The trains come every 5-10 minutes and once the train stops, you have to walk about 5 more minutes (thus one of the MANY reasons I'm not a fan of the Disney rental strollers) to get to Rafiki's Planet Watch. It can eat up time in a day like none other. I know people who love it but unless you or your kids are DETERMINED to go, I'd say skip it. 

There's other fun things to do at Animal the Flights of Wonder show (we're not even "bird" people but we love it), the Pagani Forest Trail, Festival of the Lion King Show, face painting and other fair/carnival-type fun in Dinoland and half a dozen others that are great but just don't make our must do list when we're on a tight schedule.

No matter how tight your schedule is, keep your eyes open for the infamous DeVine...she's, well, divine. 

May 13, 2012

Happy You-Day to All Would-Be Moms

Mother's Day is here. It can be a great time where you're able to celebrate your own mom and all she's done for you and it can be a day where you look back and marvel at your own children but for women who have suffered miscarriages or struggle with infertility, it can be a painful day. 

To those women I want to say you're not alone. You may not end up with the family you dreamed of as a child yourself but there are other ways and other dreams. You can get through this season. I thought our third miscarriage was going to break me. I remember falling apart and telling some of our close friends that I was tired of feeling like a tomb. You see, for me, getting pregnant was easy. Staying pregnant has always been the hard part. We wanted a HUGE family and after two successful (and very high risk/difficult pregnancies) we realize now that our huge family will come but it will come mostly through adoption. It's going to take more time and effort but we'll get there.

I hope that you have all the support, the chocolate, lemon-drop martinis and chick flicks or whatever else you need to get through this season. Celebrate you today. Spoil yourself. You deserve it.

May 11, 2012

Military Spouse Appreciation Day Blog Hop

Military Spouse Appreciation Day Blog Hoppers! (that's a mouthful!) I'm linking up with Household 6 and Riding the Roller Coaster and can't wait to meet some new (to me) military bloggers.


I'm Brianna. I'm a stay at home/first generation homeschooling mom and Army Wife.

We have a huge dog that we adore (a Rhodesian Ridgeback named Balak-aka Bubba)...

and two AMAZING kids...

the boy will be FOUR next month...

and the girl will be ONE in July!

She was born while my husband was in Afghanistan on his first deployment. He came home two months ago and we're starting to all get used to this whole family of four thing. As a family, our favorite thing to do is go to Disney World...yeah, we're those people...we go as often as we can and we love all things Disney.

In addition to Disney planning, I'm a big fan of photography and I'm really getting into sewing. The other time suck for me right now is (and can't believe I'm writing this) training for a half marathon! It's kind of a big deal because I have a heart condition but I've been cleared to train and I'm looking forward to standing at the finish line with the finisher medal in my hands...not really looking forward to actually running.

Hope you have a great time hopping around! I'm excited to meet some new blogging buddies!

May 10, 2012

Children's Dresses, Skirts and Applique Tutorials

I've started making "custom" outfits for our baby girl to wear on our next trip to Disney World. I'd also like to make a few things for the boy but boy clothes are harder for me. I'm kind of limited to shirts because I'm not really a fan of the character shorts and to be honest, for the price, I can buy him a pair of super cute cargo shorts from Old Navy cheaper than making them. The problem with shirts for him is that button down shirts with all the buttons and the collar and all that intimidate me. I like to make my own patterns or use online tutorials as my guide and I just don't know if I could do that for him. Anyway, I've done some applique stuff so he's not left out but I hope to do more for him soon.

In the meantime, here's what I've managed to do for the girl. Wherever possible, I've added links to online tutorials that have helped me along the way in addition to my own simple breakdown of what I did.

Sorry about the picture quality...they're all from my phone because I just haven't had time to sit down and really photograph the outfits.

This (and two others just like it...a purple Tinkerbell and a blue Ariel) were the simplest dresses I've made. I bought the fabric pre-ruched so all I had to do was purchase 1/2 yard (our daughter is 12 months) of each and then measure how long I wanted it. I could have cut out the excess fabric from the middle but instead I folded the Minnie Mouse area over itself a couple times and sewed both at the top and the bottom of the folds which provided me with the desired length without leaving an unsightly edge. I then sewed the two sides together and simply added a ribbon to the top as halter straps (personal preference and in order to ensure that the dress doesn't slide down too far).

I'm not sure if we'll use any of the pre-ruched dresses for Disney because they're just not as nice as some of the others but I suspect they'll be great back up dresses for those days when the girl has a messy meal or a diaper failure. The best part about these dresses is that I can let out the length as she grows and eventually just add leggings and they can be shirts (assuming they don't get stained or torn between now and then).

This is one of my FAVORITES! I used an online tutorial I found via a search on pinterest. Jessica from Happy Together wrote an excellent tutorial for a Modern Sailor Dress. I adjusted the sizing and the fabrics to make what I think is a super cute Minnie Mouse dress. You'll notice it's a bit big on our princess but since our trip is still four months away, I think it will be perfect. 

I'm also thinking about adding black iron-on embroidery letters (because, alas, I do not yet have an embroidery machine...hint, hint Joshua...or Mom...or anyone) to the top red/white polka-dotted section which would read: "Minnie Mouse" and top it off with pigtails and the new Minnie Mouse ears hair clips that we bought from the Disney Store...

I was happily surprised to see how well the reds match up (although it's not showing it as well in the pics). 

The next outfit I made was a last minute thing for the girl to wear to a traveling dinosaur exhibit. (The boy already had a ton of dino shirts but the girl was lacking and I had some extra fabric). 

I did the skirt "off the cuff" as it were but there's a million skirt tutorials online. 
What I did was yet again take a piece of our son's large sketch pad paper (butcher paper would work great too). Here's a sample of what it sort of looked like...(I tossed the actual "pattern" when I was done...sorry)
A-9 1/2 did I get that?
I measured our daughter's waist (17 1/2 inches) added an inch and a half for comfort and stitch allowance (19 inches) and divided it by two-for the front and back (9 1/2)
B-8 1/2 inches...why did I do that?
I wanted it to be 8 inches long and I added 1/2" for 1/4" seam allowance at both the top and bottom
C-1 1/2 inches...what is that?
The waist line allowance (I had 1/2 inch non-roll elastic)-it was folded over so the waist line itself ended up being 3/4 inch which still left 1/4 for seam allowance
D-1 1/2 inches each...what is that for?
To give the skirt a more A-line appearance.

Step 1...make your pattern (see above example)
Step 2...using your pattern, cut two pieces of flowered (or whatever fabric you choose) and two pieces of white (or whatever lining you want)
Step 3...with right sides together sew the bottom of the front to the bottom of the front lining (there should be no difference in size between front back and lining pieces but you fabric pattern may make a difference in what you want where)
Step 4...with right sides together sew front to the back (all the up one side and only up through half of the waist line on the other-leaving you room to insert your elastic)
Step 5...fold the waist line over so wrong sides are facing each other and sew
Step 6...insert the elastic and sew ends together (I use a safety pin to help me guide it through)
 Step 7...hand sew the open spot where you inserted your elastic.
Done with the skirt.


Either print or draw the design you want. I googled dinosaur images and then sketched the silhouette onto card stock and cut it out. You can also use stencils. 
Take some Heat and Bond Iron-On Adhesive (which you can find at any fabric store or online) and cut a square or circle or whatever shape you want that is slightly larger than the applique design. The Heat and Bond will be two side shiny, the other is covered in paper. Shiny side down, iron the Heat and Bond to the fabric according to the Heat and Bond instructions. 
Either stencil, trace or free hand your drawing to the Heat and Bond paper (remember if you're doing letters or numbers to reverse them)
Cut out the applique.
Remove the paper.
Place it on the shirt (or whatever fabric you are appiquing) and iron according the Heat and Bond instructions.
Heat and Bond will not keep you applique attached alone. You have to then stitch around your applique to hold it in place permanently. 

My Favorite.

This dress was actually really simple.

First I did the top similar to the top on the red Minnie Mouse dress except that instead of having the front and back be equal lengths, I wanted the back more open. 
I ended up with the front being 10" x 6 1/2" (with a slight notch cut for the arms/shoulders...about 1 1/2 inches over and 2 inches down but I just eyeballed it-be sure to fold your pattern in half when you make the arm cuts so that they are exactly the same especially if you eye ball it like me).
The back was 10" x 3 1/2" and needed nothing for the arms because it was so low.  
Cut two pieces for the front and two pieces for the back.
Sew the back together along the top with right sides together.
Sew your straps (mine were each 3" x 14" folded in half)  along the long edge and top then turn it right side out and iron flat
With right sides together and the straps inserted, sew the top edge and halfway down each side of the front (because the back is lower). If you're uncertain about the strap placement, refer to Happy Together's tutorial under the red Minnie Mouse dress.
Since my back and front pieces were each 10" I made the first layer 12 1/2 inches long each (cut two-front and back or four if you want it to be lined or thicker which I prefer) because I've found a 25% increase gives me the desired ruffled...make it longer for more of a ruffle or shorter for less. The height was based on the total length I wanted divided by the number of layers so in this case was 3 1/2 inches.
Sew a simple straight line base stitch along the top of each strip with the longest stitch your machine allows (mine's a 5 and works great) leaving plenty of excess thread at the start and finish of you stitching
Take ONE of the loose threads at an end and pull. Be sure you are only pulling one thread. It doesn't matter if it was the bobbin thread or the top thread. Pull it until it ruffles and push the ruffles around to the desired length and then pin the ruffled fabric (right sides together, as always) to your top. 
Sew them together. 
Repeat for the back.
Repeat the same process for the next layer...for me that meant the next layer was about 15 1/2 inches long and still 3 1/2 high.
The final layer is similar in that it was still about a 25% increase in length bringing it to about 21 inches but instead of still being 3 1/2 inches long, I made it 7 so I could just fold it in half and not have to have an exposed hem.

May 8, 2012


Yesterday was crazy. But it was crazy in a good way.

The boy was kicking letter butt. Normally, Mondays are a little slower on the homeschooling front because over the weekend we don't push it. We might do some simple science or math as we strongly believe in incorporating learning into everyday situations but it's not scheduled or planned...spontaneous learning, if you will. I'm really proud of him and all the work he's done without complaint since we started. 

The girl, on the other hand, has decided she now wants to stand up, unassisted. The only problem is that she can't stand up unassisted. She gets so frustrated when you try to hold her hands and help her. Instead, she just sits there crouched down like a sumo wrestler about to pounce. She tries to stand and falls. Repeatedly. Speaking of falling, last Saturday she fell. Hard. So hard on her head in fact that she started throwing up. I've never been so sick to my stomach with worry. Her eyes were equally dilated and reactive. She never blacked out. She just threw up a couple times but it was more than enough to take her into the ER. Once there, they looked her over and cleared her. Told us to closely watch her for 24 hours and she should be fine. We did and she seems to have recovered fully. I have no doubt that she will be the reason I have a heart attack and go grey sometime in the next five years but I wouldn't change her for anything. I love her little independent, stubborn as a mule spirit.

Back to yesterday though. 

I had a much anticipated appointment with my doctor. It was the big yay or nay on training for Disney's half marathon in January. After an hour in the waiting room (something I'm far too used to...cardiologists and high risk OBs are more often than not called away so waiting rooms and I are old friends), I was seen. I used the wait time to read a book...Mousejunkies. I got it for Christmas but hadn't had a chance to read it until now. It may be the funniest Disney-addict-style book I've ever read. The subtitle is "all you need to know for a perfect vacation" and it's marketed as a tip/planning book but personally I think it's just a funny book for those of us who are already Mousejunkies. There's some decent tips but you can get more information from websites like AllEars.Net or books like the The Unofficial Guide To Walt Disney World.

And then the moment of truth came. 

My doctor checked me over. Discussed my condition and what was and wasn't safe. He gave me a heart rate to stay under, encouraged me to use a heart monitor (which I had already bought in the hopes I would be cleared) and gave me a beta blocker prescription with strict instructions that if I should go into tachicardia while running, crush it with my teeth and swallow it so that it will be absorbed as quickly as possible. And then he said the magical words..."GO FOR IT!"

To say I'm excited would be a massive understatement. I'm euphoric. I'm not a runner and I'm not excited to run. I'm excited to finish. I'm excited to finish a half marathon at Disney World and I will. Next January. 

May 3, 2012

I Want To Do The Impossible

This may be a case of putting the cart before the horse but I'm excited. I've decided to start training for Disney's Half Marathon in January. I'm pretty sure it's just a pre-mid-life crisis thing and I have to get cleared by my cardiologist but like I said, I'm excited.

For the last five years, I've either been pregnant, nursing, trying to get pregnant or recovering from a miscarriage. Not to mention the year and a half of the last two that I've been parenting solo. It's been exhausting and this is an opportunity for me to do something, to work for something that is just for me. I'll be 30 in March and although I don't think that's old by any means (I'll never be that girl who is 29 for the 2nd or 3rd or 4th time), it's still a milestone. I feel old in so many ways. We've been through multiple miscarriages, a combat deployment and I've seen more doctors than I care to remember. 

Don't get me wrong, I know I have a heart condition and it's not something I play around with. I'm just tired of it and pregnancy and the Army and doctors and everything else having control of my body and not me.

So, I've made an appointment with my doctor and I'm hoping/praying/crossing my fingers and am willing to beg him to help me come up with a safe training plan that will get me ready for the half marathon. I know my limits and I know my triggers. I'm not going to put myself in danger, I just want to do something that seems impossible because if I don't do something now, I'm afraid I never will.

"It's kind of fun to do the impossible" -Walt Disney