Category Archives: family

Valentine’s Day: Love Letter to our Son

Papi and little man

Papi and little man

For Valentine’s Day, our son’s school asked each parent to write a “love letter” to their children, which would be hand-delivered to each of them by the “mailman.” How cute!

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My little running buddy!

What originally started as a homework assignment quickly became much more. As I wrote the letter, memories of when my little man was just a wee babe that fit nicely in our hands came flooding back. I thought back to when we found out we were expecting, and then, to the gentle flutters of his feet and hands in the womb, which eventually gave way to defiant kicks to the ribs. We knew then he would be quite the little imp.

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This is such a neat idea for both the child and the parent. Try it yourself and see! Watch their eyes sparkle and light up when you place the letter in their hands. What kid doesn’t like receiving mail with their own name on the envelope?

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Helping with dinner!

So to my little man, Happy Valentine’s Day!

Dear Alejandro, Continue reading

Jack Frost and Snuggle Bugs

I’m a cold-weather girl, at least when it comes to running. It’s ironic really because I hate being cold but given a choice between running in the heat and running in the cold, I’ll take the cold. Maybe it’s because there’s only so many layers you can take off come summer, but you don’t really need to pile on tons during the winter. ;) Not smelling as bad is another plus, seeing as mami often doesn’t shower until the end of the day. Oh, did we mention it’s also “No Shave” November? Not sure that’ll fly that well though. :P I can’t stand the itching. ><

No shave November

While other runners might go home and lounge on the couch after a 4-6 hours run, little man has his shoes in hand when I get home. “Let’s go to the playground mami, o.,k.?”

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I had miles I needed to cover this week. I’m not really training for anything particular at the moment. I do have the Helen Holiday Half coming up in a few weeks, but it’s a relaxed race. The plan is to run, take some pics, and then meet up with the girls for beer, karaoke, Christmas lights, and Germanish treats. :)

Credit: Helen-White County Convention and Visitors Bureau

Credit: Helen-White County Convention and Visitors Bureau

I am working on getting back to a consistent training schedule with the new house settled, the old house fixed and rented out, the unpacking finished, and with Girls on the Run ending for the season. This week’s tempo miles are laying lazily with my running shoes. Unfortunately, the cold weather that I love to run in has also brought with it nasty colds, which it has generously given to our wee man, who then shared it with his abuelita and his papi.

snuggling with my little man after his breathing treatments. :)

snuggling with my little man after his breathing treatments. :)

So instead of lacing up my Brooks Cascadias, I’m spending some time with my little man, who has blessed me with lots of kisses, hugs, and snuggle time.  *feeling blessed*

Comfort Food for Runners: Garlic-Roasted Potatoes

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I’ve been on a coconut oil frenzy for over a week! The flavor is subtle, smooth as silk sailing on a slightly sweet, nutty flavor. It’s like the little black dress of cooking oils, perfect for changing up your everyday, olive oil routine.

With that being said, I wouldn’t recommend cooking everything with coconut oil, seeing as it contains slightly more calories than its olive oil counterpart, but significantly more saturated fats. Still, it’s a nice change and definitely gives ordinary, everyday veges an extra “Oomph.”

It was the perfect companion to Monday night’s vege side dish, Garlic-Roasted Potatoes.  I don’t have exact measurements for any of the ingredients, as I kind of went through the kitchen like a Tasmanian devil and just put a dash of that, a pinch of this, double that, etc. I think it also comes down to personal choice as well. Some people, like my hubby, like their food with more salt. I prefer to let the natural flavors simmer and blend with each other. Coconut oil is perfect for any pan or roasted potato recipe.

Garlic-Roasted Potatoes in Coconut Oil

~1 medium-size bag, fingerling potatoes (usually found against the wall with veges)

~Coconut Oil                     ~minced onions                   ~garlic salt

~pomme de terre de jojo (specialty spice, easily found in Kroger)

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Preheat oven to 400 F.

Cut the fingerlings in halves or quarters, length-wise. Microwave a bit of coconut oil (maybe 4-5 large spoonfuls to ¼ cup…again, I didn’t measure). Be careful about using too much coconut oil, as I found out the hard way that it just kind of sits in the pan while roasting, making the potatoes a bit mushy. It’s best to start out with a small amount. You can always microwave more, if you need it.

Pour the coconut oil over the fingerlings in a medium to large mixing bowl. Add minced onion  (approximately palm-sized). Add approximately 1-1 ½ tsp. garlic salt and 1 ½- 2 tsp. Pomme de Terre de JoJo. Toss the fingerlings thoroughly.

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Spread the potatoes across a baking pan, preferably nonstick. Pop it into the oven. Set the timer for 30 minutes, and enjoy a glass of wine on the couch.

I wish I had exact measurements for you guys. With vegetables, I just kind of go with it and serve as my own taste tester, adding this and that until I’m happy with the flavors. Meats are another story. I’ve never been able to cook meats…ever. I don’t even bother trying with those anymore. It’s just not my forte. Now vegetables and desserts, bring it on!

Next time, I’d love to try some Parmesan and rosemary in place of the minced onions. What’s your favorite way to use potatoes as a side dish?

The blessing called life

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Ten little fingers and ten curly toes…it’s one thing that every mother does when her bundle of joy is placed into her arms. It’s natural, an instinct, although had there been an extra one or perhaps one less, her love would remain unchanged.

Our little ones are perfect. Our love unconditional…it’s something I finally understood when I had my own.  From the day he was born, I was irrevocably smitten by him, would do anything for him. I went from me, me, me to placing the wants, needs, and life of a babe that fit into my hands before my very own without a single regret.

No mother likes to see her child suffer, and no mother wants a “label,” a limitation, placed upon her child. For those that know me and have followed this blog way back know how we rose above those challenges early on from severe postpartum depression and six long months of colic to nine months of acid reflux that required little man to be held upright anywhere from 30-45 minutes to sometimes an hour after each feeding and several food and environmental allergies. 

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From the moment we took him home from the hospital, it was clear to us that Alejandro inherited not only his papi’s stubbornness but also the stubbornness from mami too. Funny, because he slept perfectly fine in the hospital ward. :/ Man, I bet our parents were doing the “Uh-huh, now you have a taste of your own medicine.” :P No, in all seriousness, our family and our close neighbors were God-sent (you know who you are), and we knew how lucky we were to be surrounded and enveloped by such love and support.

The day he was born I knew I lived for little man. Whatever he chooses in life, he’ll grow up knowing that mami and papi are in his corner, supporting him all the way.

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Since he was a wee babe, we’ve also fought numerous viral infections that always seemed to hit little man harder than other babes his age. He always kept colds twice as long, always developed secondary infections because of them, always spent fall/winter/spring on a nebulizer.  His pediatrician threw around the term “asthma,” so we went to another one, who shortly afterwards would soon throw it out as well. We’d continue this pattern through at least five pediatricians, all labeling him as having “chronic airway disease.” Disease…isn’t a disease progressive, I thought? Upon research, I saw where this was going.

So for the past year, we’ve turned our heads and closed our ears, not wanting to hear what any pediatrician or GP had to say. We tuned them out and along came spring. Alejandro’s colds disappeared, so did his ear infections, bronchial infections, etc.

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…then came fall.

Little man has spent the past three weeks struggling to overcome a cold and a persistent cough that got so bad, he was unable to sleep. Fast-forward to yesterday…little man’s coughing became so bad, he threw up several times and appeared to be “holding” his breath in between coughs, his color just a mite off. We took him to urgent care, and the doctor, upon listening to his chest, furrowed his brow. He checked him several more times, raising my suspicions that this wasn’t an ordinary cold. Then, more tests and three breathing treatments. After checking him again, he turned to us and said Alejandro had been having an asthma attack and that what we thought was Alejandro just “holding” his breath was Alejandro not able to take a complete breath. There was that word again, asthma.

The doctor took his time explaining to us what asthma was, how it presented itself in children this young, and letting us know that it wasn’t due to anything that we did. He placed his bets on the numerous infections and secondary, respiratory infections that he had over his young lifespan, as neither papi nor mami has asthma.

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The treatments they did helped quite a bit, and his oxygen level went up, enough so that we could go home, digest the information and sift through the prescriptions given to us. Lucky for us, Alejandro’s asthma is mild. By this morning, it was clear the doctor was indeed correct. Alejandro woke up like his old self again, his color just right, a twinkle in his eyes.

The diagnosis is bittersweet. Bitter because deep down, we both knew what it was, yet neither of us wanted to believe it. Bitter because we were so focused on “labels” that we were blind to his previous attacks. Sweet because we finally had an answer for why he always kept colds so much longer than other kids his age and why every cold led to an inevitable secondary infection, which led to rounds and rounds of antibiotics. Sweet because nothing more serious ever happened. Blessed watching his chest lift softly and evenly without effort, as he sleeps….one arm hugging his favorite blankie, the other his “KoKo” train. Blessed knowing, that despite what we consider to be “big” things in our world, we know that we are fortunate, beyond belief, to have a healthy, little boy, who still gets to do all the things he loves. :)

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The day [he] was born was the happiest day in [his] parents’ lives.

“[He’s] perfect,” said [his] mother.

“Absolutely,” said [his] father.

And [he] was.

[He] was absolutely perfect. –based on Chyrsanthemum by Keith Henkes

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Run10Feed10: Make your Run Meaningful!

credit: feedthechildren.org

credit: feedthechildren.org

Join us in our fight against childhood hunger, an epidemic running rampant across the United States. Everyday, 1 in 6 children across the United States come face-to-face with hunger, not knowing where their next meal will come from. In Atlanta, that numbers jumps to 1 in 4 children.

What can you do? RUN! You can sign up to run virtually through October 27th, or you can join us in-person tomorrow, 8 a.m. on October 5th at Big Peach Kennesaw! Click HERE to register to “Run Your Own 10k,” and your registration ($28) will go directly to providing TEN meals to hungry children in need. Send me a quick message or comment here, so I can add you to the list, according to in-person or virtual runners.

Can’t run? Make a donation to my fundraising page for Women’s Health Run10Feed10, and your donation will also go directly towards stomping out childhood hunger. Be sure to mention “The Running Teacher” when you donate. :) I’d <3 to thank you personally!

Limited-edition, Run10Feed10 woven SWAG bags will be mailed directly to your with goodies from Women’s Health sponsors! :) YUM! Want to join us in-person tomorrow? Read below for more info!

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Run10Feed10 Atlanta FUN Run runners:

“Today is the last day to register for tomorrow’s Run10Feed10 Atlanta Fun run! So sign up, and come out to join us!  Think of it as a large group run with LOTS of goodies and giveaways! How SWEET is that!

But what I want everyone to keep in the forefront of their minds is that your registration fee ($28) goes DIRECTLY towards providing TEN meals for hungry children in OUR metropolitan area, because this is the purpose of tomorrow’s fun run.

How do I register?

Click the link below. Once there, you will register to “Run my Own 10k.” It gives the option of running virtually or in-person. You can choose either, and we hope we will see you in-person tomorrow morning! J Registration will NOT be available tomorrow per the fulfillment center.

https://register.bazumedia.com/reg/form?eventID=3619

How do I receive my swag bag?

You WILL receive a smaller swag bag generously donated by our local and online sponsors tomorrow morning. Your OFFICIAL, limited-edition, woven Run10Feed10 swag bag will arrive in the mail directly from Women’s Health. The official bag also has swag/goodies provided by Women’s Health sponsors. It’s like getting DOUBLE swag!

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Nitty-Gritty

The fun run takes place at Big Peach Kennesaw at 8 a.m. tomorrow morning, October 5th. Please arrive by 7:30, so we can get everyone checked in and add names, if you are not on the list. There’s plenty of parking at Big Peach, so no need to worry! Peachie will open at 7 a.m. Feel free to arrive any time, but do try to be there by 7:30ish. Big Peach and I will start the welcome at 7:45-7:50 and explain the course.

Aid Station Fixins’: PowerAde, Accelerade gels, peanut butter sandwiches, gummi bears, bananas

Post-Run Spread: Coffee/water, Cupcakes, Muffins, Cookies, bagels, bananas, homemade goodies to add to your swag bags.

Post-Run Giveaways: BROOKS gift certificates, Georgia Marathon, Hot Chocolate 5k/15k, RoadID, Inspired Endurance gift certificates, KINeSYS gift basket, PRO Compression gift certificate

Shout-out to our sponsors: BROOKS, Cupcakes So Sweet, PRO Compression, KINeSYSGeorgia Marathon, Hot Chocolate 5k/15k, Road ID, Bradford Chiropractic Center, Inspired Endurance, Waffle House, and Kelapo Coconut