Friday, July 29, 2011


Wow.  I haven't posted in so long, I actually forgot my password.  I hadn't posted in so long that I started to avoid the blog altogether. I have always enjoyed writing my posts, but it really became a chore, so I just didn't do it.  I haven't posted in so long....I could go on, but I promise I'm back and I promise to post more, because I want to be able to look back on this and remember all of it-the good, the bad, and the busy, busy, busy.

Where did the time go and what the heck have we been doing?

I would not have been able to get through the past couple of months if I didn't keep myself and my family busy. I did and do this very purposefully-I function much better on a schedule, and I find that if I'm functioning okay, everyone else follows suit.  Running, swimming and field trips somehow got me through.

On running-After months of training in the pouring rain and complaining about it to all those who would listen, I finally ran my marathon and I am proud to say I did it all by myself.  Daddy O and I have always run as a fierce twosome, each of us pushing the other in different ways.  It was incredibly tough to train without a partner and I dreaded completing a marathon without my husband.  One week pre-marathon I was full of nerves, worrying about the aftermath of three successive colds in the previous six weeks as well as the development of a painful charlie horse in my left calf that seemed to appear around mile eight.  I discussed how nervous I was with a volunteer when I went to pick up my race-day packet and she said don't worry, there are a lot of first timers out there!  You'll do great.  She seemed a bit surprised when I told her this would not be my first, but my fifth. 

The marathon itself was not nearly as tough as the training and I really managed to enjoy myself and seeing my family cheer me on at certain points along the way.  My calf seized up on cue at mile eight, but I stuck it out and by mile 15, I didn't feel much of anything.  Funny how that works.  I did hit a pretty good wall around mile 24, but I came away feeling good about my run.  It was a new challenge and it turned out to be fun.  Hopefully I can continue to run this distance, but I think I'm going to look for a babysitter or a new training partner to make the preparation part easier.  Fast forward to today and Daddy O and I have switched roles, I have cut down on my miles and take care of the kids while he trains for his first  marathon solo. 

On swimming (and bragging)-Swimming became our core activity. We would usually head out in the morning and arrive at the pool about an hour early so we could take advantage of the playground areas at the school nearby.  Then the boys would swim for an hour and we would trek up the stairs to the cafeteria where they offered  a free lunch for those in the program.  By the time we arrived home around one o'clock in the afternoon, both kids were practically comatose and voluntarily napped for at least two hours.   Ahhhhhh....

But back to lessons...I am impressed at the progress my boys have made.  Boy O can dive and flip off the diving board, swim across the pool forward and backwards by himself as well as dive down under the water to retrieve different items.  Considering that he was swimming with a float belt and/or floaties just two short months ago-amazing.  Not only is he confident he can swim, I am confident that he can swim and it makes me feel so much more comfortable when we are around water.

Baby O has also shown improvement and though he is just shy of two years old, he can actually swim across the pool (with foam floaties of course) by himself.  Although he was wonderful at the swimming part, he still showed his age with the getting out of the pool part and standing in line part.  I got just as much of a workout as him guiding him in and out of the pool.  Even though I feel very comfortable with Boy O around water and am glad that Baby O feels comfortable in the water, swim lessons have only increased my nervousness with Baby O, he is so fearless that I have to be much more vigilant or just jump in along with him.

On field trips and other things (and more bragging) - I have been a woman possessed when it comes to school work and field trips.  I would assume that most people let up in the summer time, but I wanted to take advantage of the upcoming road trip and continue with his reading and math skills so he would be ready to start school in the fall.  Geography has been a fantastic addition to the mix and Boy O knows all 50 states and capitals (contrary to what you might think, I am not a drill Sergeant-it is all thanks to a CD we listen to in the car), can read a simple map and is familiar with different climates and landforms.  Field trips to Mt. Rainier, Mt. St. Helen's and hiking in local state parks have also been good for seeing the best of the Pacific Northwest as well as supplementing what he has learned from his workbook.  Nothing better than seeing a volcano and its path of destruction first hand...

Here are a couple of pictures of our trip to Mt. Rainier.  Keep in mind this was mid-July and we should have brought snow pants and sleds.

Running, swim lessons, and life in general have kept Family O busy up until my last post and then everything kind of went into overdrive. I'm an army brat, I've moved dozens of times, shouldn't I be the expert? I can imagine my Mothers voice now: Not really. Your parents always did the hard stuff, and all you had to do was put some clothes back on hangers, help unpack the spices and generally stay out of the way. Seriously, that's all I did. After doing some very minor things, I realized that it was tedious work and usually found somewhere to skulk off to out of sight where someone couldn't ask me to do something that required any type of effort. In retrospect though, now that I have kids of my own, maybe this was by design (care to comment on that Mom and Dad?).

It was as if one day I realized we had only a month left in a place we had called home for the last seven years. Questions began to clutter my head. Why hasn't one person come to look at our house? What are we going to do? Where are we going to live? What community should we choose? What school supplies should I buy for Kindergarten? Or first grade? And of course the most important: Why on earth have I not created a gigantic folder of every answer to my question with an exact minute by minute diagram of what will happen from the moment our things are in the moving van?

Not to worry. After two weeks of brain chaos, it only took me a few hours to create the giant folder and endless checklist of things to do and then about two more weeks to see it to fruition. Then it became a waiting game. A countdown. The last day of school.

Even though I was keeping busy and now fully armed with my gigantic folder, things still started to weigh heavy on my mind.  Things out of my control.  Big things.  Our house.  The one thing my folder couldn't do was find someone to buy our house.  In 65 days on the market, not one person had come to look at our house.  Not one.  I would clean the house every morning before I left just in case someone wanted to see that day.  I had been Suzy Sunshine up until a point, trying to stay optimistic and somewhat lah-dee-dah about the whole thing.  But after sweeping, mopping, and vacuuming every day for nearly two months, it was becoming clear to me that our house wasn't going to sell and thinking of keeping this house on the market or renting it from 3000 miles away gave me heart palpitations.  Daddy O took the long trip South  to find a rental for us and fortunately was able to find something nice, albeit smaller than what we have been accustomed to that was within our budget.  Sure enough, the day after we signed the lease, I received a call that someone wanted to look at our house and the rest is history.  It isn't officially sold yet, but we expect to close within the next couple of  weeks.  WHEW!  In celebration of the offer, I didn't sweep, mop, vacuum or mow the lawn for 10 days.  It was a pretty awesome 10 days, but then the boys started playing with dust bunnies and I decided I might need to sweep.

I'm not super sentimental about moving on but it is fun to look back-this is where we began our life as a  couple seven years ago.  We hadn't even been married six months when we bought this house, got jobs, and settled down.  We made a lot of friends, saw many things, started a family and lived our dream.  We will have the most amazing memories and I am sad to leave but also looking forward to what I call "Phase II" in the life of Family O.

My Dad is flying in on Sunday to help us traverse the country from top to bottom.  The packers arrive on Monday, the movers come on Tuesday and we will begin our 6-7 day journey soon thereafter. The countdown is almost over and I'm looking forward to the journey and beginning new.  Stay tuned-I will keep you posted next week on the road!


  1. So excited for you! You've accomplished so big things since we've last heard from you! A marathon by yourself, a son who can swim and dive, keeping a house clean day after day, and sold...fantastic! I'm just excited after reading this post!! :0) Missed you!

  2. ps - you won't be coming through Missouri on your trip will you?

  3. Unfortunately not, or you know I'd be knocking on your door! We do have good friends that live in West Plains though-are you near there? In any case, now that we are relocating to the Lone Star State, I can at least consider the possibility of driving :)

  4. Well, I probably did find you some tedious chore so that you would go hideout to get out of work. You assessed that situation pretty well. I do remember being possessed by a demon before, during, and just after a move so I understand your feelings right now. Just remember to make the bed first thing when you get there. That way when you are totally exhausted at the end of the first day you can fall into bed.

  5. We are about 2-2.5 hours north of West Plains! Next time you go to meet your friends we can meet half way between...or you're welcome to come to our home and stay for awhile as well! Man, I wish you were coming through!!!

  6. As an experienced mover, you get to the point where you can recognize the good and professional movers/packers. For these, you move aside and let them do the work. For the rest, you hover closely and make sure they do what they are supposed to do. As I recall, even if you skulked away to hide from having to do some tedious chore, at least we didn't have to entertain you.