Wednesday, July 20, 2011

Refocus and Goals

A few of you asked why I removed my post yesterday.  Truth is, I don't really know. Sometimes I do that.  I put myself out there in one way or another and then just feel weird about it and end up finding comfort in keeping to myself.  I know it sounds weird.  I think it also comes at times that I'm feeling most critical of myself.  Do you ever get that feeling like you're doing a lot of everything but NOTHING really well?!  That's kind of how I feel lately.  I'm doing a lot of things half-ass...parenting, summer activities, sticking to goals, friendships, marriage, my job as a SAHM, etc. I know, I know, I can be too hard on myself sometimes, YES, and this isn't a pity party post...just more of putting things out there.  And truthfully, I'd rather have my most recent post on my blog be something other than a post about Sagging Fairy Boobs and stretching my stomach skin.  

Today I figure I would make this post more of an online journal.  How's that for vulnerable?  No, I won't be including any too personal tidbits but I am going to share a few of my goals for the week/day.  Putting them out there even if nobody reads them or cares, helps me feel accountable.  


*  Cooking/Healthy Eating.  I DISLIKE cooking.  I CAN cook.  I can follow recipes, prepare food, etc.  but it is SOOOO not enjoyable for me.  Thinking of things to make, making a menu, grocery shopping.  Probably one of my least favorite parts of daily living.  If I could I would hire a personal chef.  Which seems to be my husband most days.  I will get a grip with this and start making a menu.  Please share your favorite Healthy recipes that are easy to shop for and prepare! 

*  Training.  I've been loving having no training lately.  It has been nice to just not run if I don't feel like it.  But having the routine in my life is good for me so I'm going to start a half marathon training plan partway through.  I will be doing the easiest level in Matt Fitzgerald's Brain Training Book.  This will allow for days off, lower mileage, etc.  I won't be training to the max  but just something on the calendar and if I feel like skipping, then I will.  I'm not all about hard core right now.  Today's workout will be repeat 1k's at 5k pace.  Goal is to do 3 of them at 6:25/6:30 pace.  

* Family Vacation.  I am feeling the need to just disconnect from things.  I want to get away to the mountains, nature and just be in a gorgeous setting with my family.  My first choice would be to drive to Western Colorado to visit our friends near Aspen but the 20 plus hours of driving with our kids doesn't sound so appealing.  We are thinking Idaho now.  Let us know if you have some suggestions.  

*  Motherhood.  Create some summer fun.  I feel like I've been waiting for summer to come (still) rather than living in the moment and making fun when we can.  The Sunshine is out today!  But even if it is grey and cloudy like it has been, I still need to create some fun memories.  Can't wait for life to come to us...we have to make it happen!  And why why why is it so hard to be present with my children??!  I think I'll be working on this one for a long time.  Speaking of that, they are getting up now so I'm about to get off this thing and go create some summer fun!  

*  Reading Real Books.  There are so many books I want to read.  I want to spend less time on the computer and more time getting through the books I have started.  

* Marriage.  Today I will be booking a night away for our anniversary.  If we were not planning a family vacation, going camping, and paying to travel to Washington for my husband's marathon, we'd be going away for a weekend.  But one night away will be nice too.  We are thinking of just going to the Grand Lodge, one of the many Mcmenamins restaurants, breweries, old hotels, movie theaters around here.  Pretty cool places.  

* New Friendships. Tomorrow I get to meet one of my favorite blog friends, Raina!  I'm so very excited to see her in real life since she has come to be such a dear friend through e-mail, the blog world, etc.  

Coming up:
*  Q and A.  I was tagged in this a couple of times and I do plan on doing it soon.  
*  Zensah compression tights review and Run With Amanda

Oh, and Hood-to-Coast is coming up soon!  Another reason to start training a little.  I just found out I'm leg 10.  Are you running HTC?  

Happy Wednesday!  


  1. Wow is this timely.. I feel like such a failure! SAHM, teacher blah blah.. I feel like I really do not do this correctly at all! My kids bicker, I can't keep up with the house and frankly get tired of arguing so I do way too many chores. SIGH..

  2. I think it's natural to feel bad about what we think we 'should' be doing when it doesn't match up to what's actually happening. Especially when summer is so fleeting. I say cut yourself a break. I'll bet you're far more successful than you think.

  3. I really love cooking, but sometimes at the end of the day I just feel too exhausted to put in the effort, so it either falls to my husband or we order out.

    Some of my favorite easy meals are:
    1. Pasta + homemade pestos (super easy to make in a food processor or blender) and a salad or roasted veggies
    2. Stirfry - some chopped veggies, some sesame oil, some soy sauce and spices, maybe some chicken or tofu with rice
    3. Moroccan Chicken Stew - recipe is on my blog here:

  4. I'm struggling with remaining "present" with my children as well. Their ages range from 13 - 2 and it's been hard to "be cool" and kiss a boo-boo in the same breath. :) If you didn't care so very much, you wouldn't struggle...good job, Momma!

  5. Thank you for sharing Amanda! You are fabulous! Don't ever forget it! Thank you for being a constant support and inspiration to me.
    I look forward to watching your plans unfold. Have a wonderful time with Raina!

  6. Wonderful goals and all definitely acheivable! If you are thinking Idaho you should do Bear Lake. It is gorgeous there but I'm not sure how far it is from you.

    Enjoy the time you have with your family and have a great day!

  7. Whoo hoo for van #2!! I'm with you on the cooking and being present with my kids. And I would love, love, love and nice family vacation... with my husband too, not just the kids. This has been a strange summer so far, I too have been waiting for it to begin thanks for reminding me to live in the moment... going to go do that now. Have fun with Raina, she's such a nice lady. :)

  8. Wow, I can relate to feeling like a failure on multiple fronts lately. Thanks for letting me know I'm not alone. Cooking is truly a joy for me (probably because I love to eat so much), but as a teacher it can be hard to find the time during the year. I use our crockpot a lot for things like chicken soup, beans and rice, and the like. I just pile in whatever I want, add spices until it smells good, and cook it on low all day. It's hard to go wrong!

  9. I'm always my own worst critic! Soak up the summer because it always goes too fast! I bet you are a great mom and wifey!

  10. The mind gets the better of us somedays. I totally get what you're saying. Try Redfish Lake, ID. It's amazing! Just got back.

  11. I also HATE cooking. It makes my house messy!! One ofmy goals is to cook more dinners. I don't want to put a lot of pressure on myself though. If I want to cook things that require boiling water and heating up frozen vegetables, FINE. At least I'm doing it. Right? :)

    I was signed up to do HTC 3 years ago and then found out I was pregnant with my first so I dropped out. Bummer!

  12. I love how goal oriented you are. So wonderful to constantly re-evaluate and better yourself. Thank you for the constant inspiration.

  13. I really appreciate how honest you are in your posts! I can relate - we really can be our own worst critics and sometimes it's hard to see all that you are doing/accomplishing!

  14. I was just thinking about summer right before I clicked on your post. It's fitting. I've been waiting to do summer stuff and I realized, I have less than a month left until MY summer is over and half of that month is booked up. I just need to start doing!

  15. great goals! and I'm with you on the cooking thing! I feel like such a shame to my southern upbringing because I am definitely not the betty crocker/martha stewart of the family:) My poor husband just goes along with it!

  16. Thanks for sharing this. I, too, feel spread thin - as a new mom, I'm trying to learn how to get it all done and it's nice to hear that other's struggle with the details too.

    My favorite summer food (even though it requires a hot oven) is to roast veggies. I like to make a sweet pepper salad with red, yellow, orange peppers - I roast them add some buffalo mozzarella and either balsamic redux or red wine vinegar and chill. In summer that's quite often dinner. Sometimes I throw some cremini mushrooms in too, today I added roasted carrots.

  17. I do love to cook, but I don't like the menu planning part of it. I'd love it if someone just handed me a menu and a shopping list. Quite often my solution during the summer is to make a good, but quick, marinade for chicken or fish that I can put together during the afternoon. Than I can throw that in the fridge until dinner time. I grill that along with some veggies and then have some rice, pasta or bread to go along with it. My kids also love anything they can put together themselves, like make your own taco salad (they can help chop up the toppings too). All of these things make for great leftovers for the next days lunch too. Bonus!

    I feel like I'm drifting right now too. For me, deciding on a direction and getting started is harder than actually completing the task. Hope the sun keeps shining down on you!

  18. The space between where I should be and where I am in life right now does seem quite large. It is difficult to juggle everything and do well at it all. You are not alone here, I think that most people are overcome with these guilty feelings often.

    What is nice that you are an intelligent woman that can catch yourself and refocus. I'm sure your children appreciate your ability to cultivate their growth as well as your own.

    A nice little get-away sounds like the perfect way to recenter.

  19. Stop being so hard on yourself! What you said about "doing lots of things but none of them well..." Pretty sure we all feel like that at one point or another.

    I hate cooking too. HATE IT!

    I'm the queen of boring meal. Protein, veggie, starch. Repeat. Booooooooring.

    The age that our kids are it. It's HARD. It's really HARD. Just know that you are not alone.

    Keep on keepin' on.

  20. I can relate to so many of the things you posted..sigh.

  21. These are such a great range of goals. I really want you and your fam to take a vacay--lots of beautiful scenery within driving distance from Portland.

    Leg 7 but I can't wait to see you at the beach party!! What leg is your hubby running?

  22. Of course, I think you should come to Colorado!!! I will definitely take you on some trail runs...just that I don't really "run" as much as I walk - but still, you'd be with me! :)

    When I was first injured, you know like over a year ago, I thought it'd kill me I wasn't on a "plan" for some upcoming race. And it nearly did...but oh how I enjoy waking up and deciding what I want to do that day. No pressure, no schedule - sometimes it's a nice break. I'm not ready to fully give up the schedule but I can foresee it becoming less important to me.

    I doubt I'll have time to comment again before I leave so I just wanted to say have a great week next week and I hope you get a nice night away for your anniversary! Sounds like heaven!

  23. I know where you're coming from about not liking cooking. I love to bake but you can't have cake and cookies for dinner (well, not every night). So I have about a dozen recipes in my head that I rotate through. And sometimes I get really bored with the same old same old but unless someone else is going to step up and cook that's just the way it's going to be.

  24. Ah-Finally signing into blogland! I think most people think I died. So, of course you know I understand much of your first few sentences:) Sometimes I feel this way too. Usually about 4 days out of the month that are preceding another 4 days that I don't overly enjoy....

    Before I even tough on your goals, you know what a great mother, wife, friend you are:)

    I DO love your goals. I LOVE to cook. Move to MN so I can cook for you. Actually, I hate cooking mundane everyday meals for my family but I love to cook for adult company! I am a SERIOUS foodie and only like to put things in my mouth that taste GOOD so I promise you wouldn't be disappointed!! I don't use recipes that often because we eat a lot of the same type of everyday meals around here.

    I'm glad you're in a good place with running and just enjoying it!!! KICK ASS run you had today! KILLED your projected plan there! Very impressed!

    Family vacations. Idaho sounds beautiful!! I totally need that time to disconnect with my family. We are so busy, if not all of us at least one of us is always going going and we rarely get time together just as a family. No mountains this year, but we've opted to take a trip beginning of August with our good friends to their cabin in Wisconsin-not too far from our hockey tournament. We're sneaking a couple of days in Duluth for just US afterwards. So great to have time with your family away from all the everyday crap. I hope you find the perfect destination and make it work!!!

    Oh Gosh, I'm only halfway down your post. I better quit even though I could type forever! Have so much fun meeting Raina tomorrow. Give her a hug from me! I wish I could join the both of you!!!!!

    Looking forward to your Q and A!! Have a good night girl!!

  25. Gosh I feel Like a DORK for not commenting when I skim read this last night...but you know, I wanted to read the WHOLE thing. And i finally did!!

    I know how you feel about halfway doing everything. Is this just how it is when you have kids and the youngest is under 5? I don't know....but it reminds me of a movie quote where a character says he feels "like butter spread over too much toast". Yep.
    ...and that's why I haven't been blogging a lot lately. :/
    Haven't been the greatest mom either...I pull the plug on MANY of my blog posts- and sometimes go private! Ha.
    Still thinking about you, though!! And totally thrilled to met you in REAL life. :) Be looking for a blonde with outdated fashion, possibly sporting plastic flip flops, jeans and very frizzy hair (badly needing to be cut). (Unless I decide to wear running clothes. Then just look for the hairy legs.) Possibly with zits too. :) And a beater maroon early 90's Toyota.

  26. Also wanted to say that you little workout sounds pretty tough!!
    And I like your anniversary night away idea- perfect :)

  27. I am so jealous you get to meet Raina!!! I want to hear all about it...she is WONDERFUL!
    I have been feeling the same thing about food and cooking. I CAN cook but it's never been enjoyabl....I was just on the phone yesterday calling friends looking for new easy recipes b/c we can't keep eating take out and cereal for dinner...I just dislike cooking/meal planning/shopping SO much:( anyway....have a great night and lets meet up for the zoo soon! xx

  28. I read this great post earlier but couldn't comment... and now I am so tired... see what time it is? But I wanted you to know how in your corner I am :) You are a fab mom, wife, athlete, etc. It's all good and it'll all work out :) Have a great time with Raina!

  29. seriously, it is so hard to be present with my kids. I kick myself almost every day that I didn't engage like I want/should have. right there with ya. YEs!! stay at grand lodge. We did the edgefield mcmenamins 9 hole course with some friends last weekend and it was so fun!! I had never golfed before in my life. It could be that I had a lemon drop or two on the course, however! :) Hope you get some good couple connection time and family vacation time!!