Thursday, February 8, 2018

Let the Games Begin!

Image result for olympic flag

I love the Olympics. One of my earliest memories of the Olympics is watching Kristi Yamaguchi win the gold in 1992. It was at that point (at five) that I fell in love with figure skating. For the next few years, I begged my parents to let me ice skate. Unfortunately, the closest rinks to us were around two hours away, so having figure skating as my sport wasn't going to happen (even though my sweet mom would've made it work). Fast forward about six years and a semi-professional hockey team moved to our area. I began calling the arena literally every day and one day, they said that public ice skating was starting soon. Cue the happy tears!

I got a pair of ice skates for Christmas that year, and in January, I took my first strides on the ice. As luck would have it, a young couple who were nationally renowned ice dancers who trained at Lake Placid had moved to the area and begun a skating program. To say I fell in love with the sport was an understatement. 

I began to test and started competing some regionally, but with ice locally only six months of the year, the likelihood of advancing to the junior or senior level and having a real career in the sport wasn't feasible. My mom took me to the closest rink for lessons and ice time once or twice a week in the summer, which I absolutely loved. I continued to keep up with the sport and skate as much as I could until a few years later when we no longer had an ice hockey team.

Though I wasn't able to continue in the sport, I've never lost my love for it. This winter, our town had ice for a few weeks and Kevin, Kaden, and I went and skated. It was so nice to be on the ice again and to still be able to do a few things like a sit spin, camel spin, and a few jumps.

Needless to say, I'm super pumped that the Olympics officially start today. We've been pumping the Games for what seem like months now. All of us get super excited for competition, whether a board game at night, football game on Saturday, or the Olympics.

If you need me the next few weeks, you can find me catching every moment of the Olympics that I can.

I'll leave you with some of my very favorite performances of all time:

And one more, just for fun:

Wednesday, February 7, 2018

January Book Review

One of my goals for this year is to read more. I love to read, but I simply haven't found/made time to do it much since Caleb was born. I may have ten or so books I bought thinking I'd read them during maternity leave while my sweet baby slept, but that didn't happen. :)

In January, I read three books.

Mary Alice Monroe is one of my favorite writers. Her books don't ever disappoint. That said, this book wasn't one of my favorites. While the Low Country of SC (one of my very favorite places) comes alive from the very first page of the book, the final book of the "Beach House" series didn't keep my attention as much as the previous books did. 

The main character, Cara, is back from some of Monroe's earlier books and she's just as lovely as ever. Not to give too much away, but for me, the subject matter around Cara in this book was a bit heavy for me. 

I loved the character of Heather, a young girl who comes to live in the Beach House for the Summer. Her life becomes entwined with Cara's, and together, a lovely story is told.

All in all, this book is a good read, just not my favorite from this series.

Do you want to know how good this book was? I'll tell you. I read the first five chapters one night and at 11 PM, told my husband I had to start cleaning out our closet and proceeded to do so until nearly 2 AM. And this is coming from someone who very rarely makes it to 11 PM on any given night. 

I've felt pretty overwhelmed due to clutter (no, my house isn't messy, we just have so many things and save so many things and have little ones who have so many things... get the picture?) and this book was just the inspiration I needed to get rid of so many things

I could devote a whole post to just this subject and I think I will. But first --> Get this book. It is a game changer, a mental mind changer, a time saver. Get it. Now!

I've loved absolutely everything I've read written by Elin Hilderbrand. Her books make me laugh and they make me cry. That make me feel all the feels. 

This book did not disappoint. I purchased it right after it came out with the good intention of reading it then, but didn't get to it until a few weeks ago. It was so good! I feel like I know the characters as friends. You know a book is good when you feel like you have something at stake. 

This book made me love the Quinn family -- especially Margaret and Ava -- even more!

What good books have you read lately?

Monday, February 5, 2018

February Goals and January in Review

I don't know about you, but January started out soooooo slow and then all of a sudden, February was here out of nowhere.

January was a fun month! We had quite a few things to celebrate in January.

We had some extra time off due to snow days. Snow days used to be rare, but lately, they feel like they're just a normal part of winter for us.

Sweet Caleb turned one on January 16th and we celebrated with a Little Blue Truck (more on that later this week)!

Kaden received the Terrific Kid Award at his school for "Respect."

We celebrated my sister's birthday with a good dinner out with family.

I got to attend a fun field trip with K.C.

Scattered among those things was the start of a new soccer season, reading three books (I'll have a review for you tomorrow), many miles run, new recipes (some winners and some losers), game nights, and beautiful weekends outside that make me yearn for Spring.

In January, I set a few goals and I'm happy to say I accomplished most of them!

- Exercise: Run 50 miles, do more strength training, Tone It Up videos. I'm not sure of my exact mileage (treadmill runs mean I don't always remember to log my miles), but I got in some good miles and some fast miles. I didn't do the extra strength training I wanted to do or more than one Tone It Up video, but I did purchase the TIU book. That counts for something, right?

- Home: organize the front room, closet under the stairs, and china cabinet drawer, cook more than eat out. I organized our front sitting room, china cabinet drawer, and cooked way more than we ate out. I didn't tackle the coat closet that seems to be the keeping place for pretty much everything I don't want to keep out on the cabinet when people drop by, but I did organize the rest of the master closet and most of the master bath. I'm counting this as a win. 

- Faith: Stay on task with the Bible in a Year App, complete Sunday School readings with Kevin, carve out a better way to do my quiet time. I'm still a little behind on my Bible in a Year App reading, but I'm not stressing about it. I'm really enjoying our new Sunday School material.

- Family: Have a fun family night, have a date night in and a date night out with Kevin. We didn't have any organized date nights in January (we really have to work on that), but we do have a fun date planned for next weekend. We managed to skip out some by ourselves this past weekend to pick up Valentine's treats for our boys, but I'm afraid I wasn't the best company after a really long day at work (I ended up sleeping in my clothes all night if that tells you how tired I was!).


February is a short month, but I'm so excited about it because the Olympics are here!

If you need me, you can find me curled up in the den watching every bit of the competition that I can. I may be a little excited for Thursday night!

In February, I have a few goals I want to accomplish.
- Exercise: Continue building my speed and endurance. Run outside more. Start doing ab work again.

- Home: Organize the closet under the stairs, finish the bathroom cabinets, start on Caleb's closet. Donate items. File taxes.

- Faith: Continue with the Bible in a Year App, complete Sunday School readings, be more intentional with Bible study with our boys, memorize scripture.

- Family: Have a movie/game night and date night. Spend more time outside. Finish Caleb's baby book.

What are your goals for February?