Full Steam Ahead to 2015.

Is it just me or did the last 365 days fly by?

Seriously! I blinked and it’s December 31st.  Where has the time gone?

It was an eventful year.  I started the year on maternity leave.  I struggled with one running injury after another and worried I might never run again.  Then I ran 10 km for the first time and managed to repeat that feat at least three more times thereafter. I shaved off almost a minute from my average running speed and ran almost 630 km this year.  WOW!

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I lost two patients to cancer, discovered another area of medicine I’d like to do more of in the future and welcomed 15 new babies to the practice.

I turned 40 and celebrated in style.

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I watched my daughter lose her first tooth and wiped away brave tears as she got her first cast.

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Our family lost a beloved pet (on the left) but we have another beauty amongst us (on the right) who still needs our love and affection more than ever now.

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I am blessed with beautiful friends and family who have consistently been there for me and have supported me this year. I am grateful to them (you know who you are) and am so very fortunate to have you in my life.

My husband is my knight in shining armor. We had so many amazing adventures this year; I can’t wait to see what’s ahead for us.

IMG_9920 IMG_9830 IMG_9697 IMG_1408 IMG_2961 IMG_3292IMG_3126IMG_1409 And finally to my readers and followers:  thank you for reading and contributing.  I look forward to another great year in the blogosphere!

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Thursday Thirty.

Thirty things I love.

1. Myself.
2. My husband
3. My children
4. My parents and brother
5. My friends
6. My cat
7. Running
8. Chocolate
9. Cross stitching
10. Coffee
11. Wine
12. Bailey’s
13. Martinis – preferably chocolate-y and sweet
14. Steak
15. Being a doctor
16. Being respected
17. Being someone to count on
18. Being my own boss
19. My bed.
20. Chips and dip
21. Ice cold water
22. The sun
23. Baklava
24. The smell of my kids right out of the bath
25. The scale 😉
26. My Guess jeans
27. My boots
28. My nails (they are the longest now they have ever been … ever!)
29. My house
30. My life

Running with Friends.

When I started running almost two years ago, I ran mostly with a few girlfriends, one in particular became my running buddy.  It was awesome.  But then I got pregnant and stopped running.  Now that I’ve started again, it’s been mostly me running alone because I was on maternity leave and running during the day and my girlfriend you know, had a life and was working! 😉 I really miss running with her but I hope that we can get back to running by the lake this summer.

A few weeks back, another friend messaged me asking if I’d be interested in a running buddy. This friend hadn’t run in a few years due to injury but was starting to get back into it and didn’t want to run more than 5km.  I was a little hesitant at first because I thought I’d just slow her down (she used to do Ironman competitions), but she insisted she wasn’t crazy fast, so I thought “What the hell?” and we made a date to run the following week.

That was yesterday.

She met me at my office and we ran to my house.  It’s just under 5 km and she thought it was a perfect start.  Little did I know we’d be doing 10s and 1s!  I mostly run 5s and 1s and had been doing some steady 35-40 minute runs until my injuries, but I didn’t want to look bad, so I agreed to the pace she set.  And then we started talking.

And then I felt like I was gonna die.

Seriously!  I had forgotten how hard it is to run and carry on a conversation at the same time.  I was dying!  By 4.5 km we were just around the corner from my house and I was so ready to quit but she made me run around the block again so that we would complete the 5 km.

I am so glad she was there to kick my butt.  It turned out to be a fabulous run and we are going to make it a weekly event.

I am still feeling the runner’s high, though my shin is not too happy with me at the moment.

Where’s the Advil?

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Lazy Sunday.

Day 19 – January Daily Blog Posting Month

Zzzzzz…..

Had a wonderful evening with my girlfriends last night.  My husband cooked us up some fabulous pasta – a sweet vegetarian marinara and a spicy italian sausage marinara.  So, so, so good!!!!

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And of course, there was wine.

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And then this…

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Wake me when it’s Monday, k?

Busy Saturday

Day 18 – January Daily Blog Posting Month

Prepping the house for some friends tonight.

Baby is napping in 45 minute stretches every 1-2 hours.

Middle son is cranky with a runny nose and low grade fever, complaining of an ear ache. Advil and Tylenol to the rescue.

I haven’t exercised today and feel guilty about it.

Gotta run, in more ways than one!!

It’s Working Folks!

Day 12 – January Daily Blog Posting Month

So, I’m 12 days in to my New Year’s resolution of healthier eating and daily exercising. So far it’s going pretty well.  When I was at the office the other day, I got on the scale and was quite pleased to see that I had lost 5 pounds.  All from just not having dessert after dinner and exercising at home regularly.

I have to say I’m pretty proud of myself.  Cutting out the desserts at nighttime was harder than I thought.  For the first few nights I still felt really hungry after our healthy dinner of fish (or chicken) and vegetables and all I could think about was having a piece of chocolate or some Chicago Mix popcorn.  Those first few days were hard but when I started to notice how my clothes fit every so slightly different, I knew I was on the right track.  My husband tried to stop me from getting on the scale, but I just had to know if the numbers were doing down.  I know it’s going to be a slow, steady decline but I am encouraged by what I’ve already seen happen in the last 10 days or so.

I also noticed that the postpartum telogen effluvium is starting.  Some of the men in the audience may not know this, but women get pretty hairy when they are pregnant.  I had nice layer of fur on my stomach and breasts throughout the pregnancy.  I suddenly noticed in the last week that my belly looked cleaner than it has and that’s when I realized all the pregnancy hair had fallen out.  Yay!  I was happy to see it because it tells me my body is changing; it’s getting back to “normal” and the “svelting” I’m seeing is all part of it.

This week I ran twice.  Now, I said I was going to run three times a week but it was hard to do this week because of the utterly frigid temperatures we had.  I know, excuses, excuses.  My two runs this week were 4.15 km and 3.71 km. The last run was particularly treacherous as I was practically running on ice the entire time.  I’m lucky I didn’t get hurt though my shins were aching by the end and they still hurt a little bit today.

But it’s all good.

I am doing what I set out to do and I don’t feel like I’m sacrificing a lot.  I am not going on a hugely restrictive diet, I am just making smarter choices when it comes to what I eat.  Sure, I have eliminated the nightly desserts and for some that might seem like a sacrifice, but you know what makes it all worthwhile?  When my best friend comes over and we share this:

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So That’s Why It’s Called A Stroller!

Day 10 – January Daily Blog Posting Month.

I spent the day strolling through the mall with a girlfriend and her baby daughter.  Her child was born 10 days after baby J.  We opened the mall at 10am and did several laps over the course of the next 4 hours.  Some shopping was done, I won’t like, but all for the kids.  My friend said that it was the “stroller” mall and boy, she wasn’t kidding.  Every second person seemed to be a mom with a stroller. It was kind of funny, to be honest.

Before having kids, I don’t think I ever noticed a mom with a stroller.  Seriously. Wasn’t even on my radar. Yet now, it’s pretty much all I see.  There are so many different kinds of strollers nowadays.  In our mother’s day, I’d be surprised if there was more than one choice.  Now?  There are such lovely models as the Bugaboo Frog, the Quinny Buzz, the Baby Trend Expedition, the Graco Trekko, the Mountain Buggy Mini, the Peg Perego GT3 Completo.  The list goes on, and on, and on.  I remember when husband and I started looking at strollers, it was very overwhelming.  First we needed the car seat and would the car seat work with the stroller we wanted?  Was there an adapter available for that stroller?  What about a bassinet? Should the stroller we pick have a bassinet attachment? How about a stand for a second child?  Should we get a double stroller knowing we’d have more than on child?  Oy.

And then there’s the clothing stores.  Some of the outfits I saw today, while being very cute no doubt, just made me wonder who we are really dressing our kid for.  Is it to show off that we have a child?  Does a baby really need a pair of hi-tops?  Does a toddler really need a fedora?  Are our children becoming our accessories?

Having said that, I did see two adorable t-shirts that I just HAD to have.  I guess that makes me no different, right?

But you have to admit those are pretty cute shirts, right?

An Ode to Veronica.

I just had a delightful day with the baby. We visited our good friend who also just had her first baby a few weeks after J was born.  I brought coffee and we spent the morning with our babies, mostly nursing (ha ha!).  The babies fell asleep, so we decided to watch some TV.  We had many choices but decided on Veronica Mars.

Yes, one of my (many) guilty pleasures.  I was introduced to VM a few years ago by this friend.  After a few episodes I was hooked.  Veronica is such a great character – she is strong, witty, and very intelligent.  She has a subtle hint of superiority in that she’s the go-to girl if you want a crime or wrong-doing solved.   I wondered how she ever finished high school – you see her more in her car snapping photographs of the perps she is investigating than in a classroom, but we have to suspend our belief a bit.  And why shouldn’t we?  It’s entertainment, after all.

My friend and I watched six (yes, count ’em, S-I-X) episodes today while the babies napped.  We could have done something, anything, more productive like a brain teaser, for instance.  But we laughed off that notion and kept watching.

One of my friend’s favorite lines from season 1:

There are so many gems in this little show.  Sadly, it ended abruptly after three seasons.  Last summer, the show’s creators and star, Kristen Bell, did a KickStarter campaign to raise money to make a movie.  The campaign was a huge success – they raised the money, $2 million, in a record, one day! By the end of the 6 week campaign, they raised over $5 million.  The film is set to be released next summer.  Can you guess who will be the first and second in line?  Ha! Well, maybe not, but we have certainly already made a date to go.

Nerds, I know.

I really need to do something productive today – oh wait, I just did! 😉

 

Moved by Music

Day 4.

Inspiration struck me when I saw this post come up on my Twitter feed.

The challenge is to write something about music; a song that represents you — that you could consider as your “intro music.”  As it turns out, this is pretty easy to write about.

This post is dedicated to an old friend.

I grew up with an older brother who was heavily into heavy metal.  Coming home for lunch meant I was listening to the likes of Iron Maiden, Motley Crue, Judas Priest, you get the drift.  This was the early-mid 80’s.  Glam rock was just starting, but new wave was well on its way and it was music that I really didn’t care for at the time.  With an older brother constantly blasting rock and roll music, it’s not hard to see how I became a metal head. 

Ah … the metalhead.  I wish I had looked like that in high school.  While most of my friends were listening to the likes of Madonna, Whitney Houston, and New Kids on the Block, I was deeply entrenched in the metal scene.  Well, actually, that’s not true.  By the time I was in high school I was listening to a lot of glam rock. Poison, Slaughterhouse, Ratt, you name it.  I was known in high school as the metal head.  Dance music and “pop” was not my style at all.

Eventually the glam scene died out and was replaced by the Seattle “grunge” scene.  I was a huge fan of Nirvana and Pearl Jam for many years.  The death of Kurt Cobain hit hard, so hard in fact, that I actually wrote a letter to the editor of Time Magazine (which was published) after his suicide.

I remember the later 90s being somewhat devoid of music for me.  Shockingly, only one song sticks out – “Tubthumbing”.  Don’t laugh!!!    It was a big hit for me in 1997.  I remember it so well because at the time I was living on my own with my then best friend and just starting to discover who I was.  We were two girls on our own, going to school, living  in the city.   It was a great time.

The very-late 90’s was a major turning point in my taste for music.  I was a graduate student in Physiology.  A fellow grad student made me listen to something called “trance”.  I told him repeatedly that I wasn’t into dance music.  He persisted. I’m so glad he did.  The album he put on for me was Paul Oakenfold‘s Tranceport 2 ( below is track 1 only).

I know this will sound cheesy and cliché, but my life changed that day.  Music suddenly made sense to me again, the rhythm, the beat, the hook – it moved me, it spoke to me. It was a profound moment. I got goosebumps.  I am forever grateful to my friend for introducing me to trance/electronic music. I still listen to it today.  I am introducing my children to it as well.  Walk into our house on any given Sunday and you just might find a little dance party going on.

Reflections.

Today is my 39th birthday.  As my mother would say, I am closing the 39th year and starting the 40th.  Hmph.  Not sure how much I like that. But it makes sense.  By the time we turn “1”, we have lived that one year, so really, I have already lived 39 years and am about to start my 40th.

Okay.

So, as I am starting my 40th year on this earth, I woke up feeling quite reflective.  In fact, I think I’ve been like this all week.  I had a heck of a time deciding what to do for my birthday.  36 weeks pregnant, tired, uncomfortable.. time to party, right?!

Wrong.

For the past several years, I’d started a tradition of pampering myself at the spa.  I would go with a girlfriend and we’d spend the day lounging in our robes, getting massages, pedicures and water therapies.  I was all set to do it again this year but just … didn’t.  Perhaps it’s because of how far along I am – a massage just isn’t the same if I can’t lie on my stomach, you know?  Walking around in a bath robe that barely fits across my belly wasn’t appealing either.

Then, I suggested hubby and I have a night away at a hotel but looking into booking a popular destination spot an hour away from the city, on short notice, was wishful thinking.

So, in the end, I’m spending the day with my family and friends.  I had a wonderful chance to sleep in, had my coffee in bed and a pancake breakfast.  The kids sang “happy birthday” to me all morning – it was truly wonderful.

Looking back on the last decade – wow, there have been so many changes.  I started my family practice; I bought my first home; I got married; I travelled; I gave birth to two amazing human beings; I’ve supported my family through illness; I’ve overcome illness myself; I’ve tried to support friends through difficult times, have judged when maybe I shouldn’t and I hope I’ve learned from it; I took up running for my physical and mental well-being; and I have surrounded myself with an incredible network of supportive friends whom I cherish.

So yes, it’s been an amazing decade, these 30s.  I can only hope the next decade is even better.