Thursday, July 16, 2015

Remembering May!

Here we are in the heat of July, and I'm attempting to catch up on the whirlwind that was May 2015. Think of it as one of those big tropical storms that comes by on the news straight for like 5 days and then disappears and you one day see the wrath that it had left and you're all "Ooooooh yeah! I remember that! Whew! That was a big one!". May is always that way for us. The end-of-the-year things tend to take over and multiply like rabbits and pretty much at the end, you're doing nothing but slouching in the recliner with mild PTSD. 
SO, May.
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May always begins with the Piece Walk & 5k in Oklahoma City. We've done it for years, and it's a cause very close to our hearts & lives. 
THIS year, hubby was running as "Dash", the mascot. And I, his loyal escort. ;)
This is why our traditional "ussie" had us lookin all....




There are very few days we wear red in our household. Valentine's Day, Christmas, and Piece Walk day. I mean, after all, we bleed orange. 

Our team, Cowboys for Ayden, is AWESOME, and we would LOVE for you to join us! Email me for more info!


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At Evan's school, Super Kids Day is the end-of-the-year fun day put on by our P.E. teacher. There are numerous stations to "visit", get your card marked, and move it on down to the next one until you have finished all of them, at which time you turn in that card for a blingin' ribbon like this one:


Evan & his buddy were the first ones to visit and complete them all, which made them uber happy and proud, and me just plain tired from chasing them all over the world. They did AWESOME though, and it was sad that his best buddy would be moving away, so this would be the duo's last Super Kid Day. :(

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The last broccoli harvest of the season:
  More on that later...

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We got an email one day from one of Emma's teachers saying, in part..
...This is to inform you that this Friday afternoon, the Phi Beta Kappa's, a prestigious academic society at OSU, would like to recognize your child's work at the OSU/SMS Art & Writing Workshop and their contribution to the SMS Anthology. Only 5 students have been selected of the couple hundred participating for their creativity and work in and out of art class, their writing for the anthology, and their academic excellence in all other areas...
We were all up in family proud mode the day of her ceremony, and so were several of our friends. 

We are SO very proud of you, Ems. You are always such an amazing student and we love to see you be rewarded for all your hard work.

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Mother's Day.
My favorite day, based solely on my little hand drawn masterpieces. Evan's card this year had me sleeping under a rainbow and my favorite "heavy blankie" that a dear friend made me for Christmas one year, flowers, and my rainbow quilt. 
Be still, my heart.

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The garden,
I'm actually giggling right now because the garden hasn't looked like this since, well, May.
On this day, we were taking out the cold weather crops and adding some summer ones.
Evan's little garden looked the cutest, with all it's lettuce and broccoli flooding all over the place.



Afterwards, we were left with a few heads of lettuce, strawberries, and a couple tomato and green bell plants that were just starting out.


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Buckbeak and her new summer remodel.
Cute as always.


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Emma was recognized at the school board meeting for her writing award the week after the ceremony. Here she is with her proud teacher. :)


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Pirate Day in kindergarten!
Nothing like a last minute cutting-of-too-small-sweatpants costume for the day!
He. Is. ADORABLE.
I mean, seriously.
Sigh.

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Last day of Running Club!
After they ran a short lap, they all got ice cream!
Evan logged over 30 miles this year!


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Em's final orchestra performance
This was the last one of the year, and as always, she shined.
I facetimed my sister on the east coast to watch it, and baby Ava, who was still in utero at the time, was dancing around to every song.
That made me smile so very much. Two cousins, already linked.


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Hi.


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Fairy Gardens!

Evan had football camp one Saturday morning, so I grabbed Emma and invited a couple friends and we headed out to a fairy garden making workshop.
It was so cute to see all the different gardens that the kids made, an all the imagination that went into turning popscicle sticks into tents and marbles into streams.


Meanwhile, at football camp...




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Remember that Super Kids race we ran earlier? We were part of the "Most Students from one Elementary" winning group, which got a pizza & pool party at the YMCA later on.
And this was later on.


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Catching frogs and tadpoles from the just-opened-up-but-not-treated pool at my neighbors house.




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A foggy walk to school...

...and a hot walk home, slushie in one hand, my hand in the other.


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Last day of kindergarten pajama party!


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My Uncle Paul came for a visit that week, and it was SO great seeing him!! We've missed him greatly since we lived in California. Even though we lived so far apart, we saw him fairly often for fun things like camping and Disney and Thanksgiving.


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A boy and his Dobby.


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I don't think we knew in May that we would have one of the rainiest springs in forever. The whole state was flooding and people were losing homes and crops and lives. Even up on our hill, the rainwater rushed over the street.
And as usual, we were out in it, jumping around.



A neighbor told me that the Farmer's Almanac says that every 7 years, this happens. And when I sat back and thought about it, the year we moved here, it was flooding like this, and I was about to be pregnant with my about to be 7 little boy. So, hmmm.

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Shakes after 8pm and pajamas! 

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We had bought these refillable slushie cup things before school ended, which led to some really fun walks down to the fill station.




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The first Thursday of Summer on the Plaza. Our kiddos were off playing frisbee in front of the library.

John and I were in our "usual" spot, relaxed and reading books and glancing up at the blurs of our children running by sporadically. And it was this summer, for the first time, that we realized that we are no longer tied to their heels, chasing after them, standing in line for the slides, making sure they weren't lost, or had to go potty or fell down and scraped a knee or two.
We were parents that could anchor down on the student union garden floor and stay there like big flowers for our little bees to come and visit a few dozen times for snacks and drinks and lawn toys and kisses and stories and check-ins before they headed to a new area.
We were grown-ups.
No more babies.
And I cried a little.
And I may have cried a little more for the consecutive Thursdays after that.
BUT
I am so happy to be here, at this time in our lives.
With two very happy, very healthy, very independent children that we have poured so much into.
So very blessed.

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Emma graduated from her "Safe Sitter" course. She had request from more than 3 families wanting a responsible babysitter that their kids loved, so we finally got her into one of the courses when she wasn't already booked, and she got her card and headed off into what would be a summer of lots of jobs.


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More Summer on the Plaza. 

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He still called it "licorice" in May. By July, that would be lost, and even though he calls it a sno-come now, he tries to remember to call it licorice for his momma, who still swoons at the silly little mixup of a little boy at a sno-cone stand.


This was the first sno-come trip of the summer. 

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May's biggest news:


One morning he decided to ride without trainers.
And he did.

That's all there was to it.
:)


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Monday, April 27, 2015

{Team Castro Racing} Weekend Roundup!

You know it's racing season when every weekend we seem to be running from here to there ... literally. Like, my legs are just about to fall off, but then again, that's why I run, right? Because I can. Because I have legs. And life. And air in my lungs.
But still, ouch.

On Saturday, John & my big bro headed off early to Tulsa for the inaugural Golden Driller Marathon.  My brother is especially lured into inaugural races, and with this one being right here in the state, it seemed like a no-brainer. 
(For me, Queen of roadside oddities, the fact that the medals had one of them on it was beyond fabulous). It was a little warm to run a marathon, but it was better than the ice storm of Cowtown!

The start/finish
 This race was done on trails, so there weren't any street closings and such, which is pretty cool!
Course Map
Kurt coming in for the finish!


Kurt's medal is there, it's just spun itself sideways :/

 In the end, they did AWESOME! Hubby even made a new PR (personal record) time in under 4 hours AND took third place in his age division! 
Earning him this Golden Driller mug.

swag.
While the men were off in Tulsa, the remaining members of Team Castro were gearing up for the Super Hero 5k!



"Batman doesn't smile", he says.

TCR is ready to go!
 We met our running pals there, Batgirl & Supergirl!






Evan blew us all away - the three adults and three kids on our team that he left behind in the dust never saw him again until the finish!

He had run the whole 5k in under 30 minutes! 
AND ran each of us in as we made our way to the finish.

These two may or may not have just walked and chatted the whole time...

Evan Batman took first place in the elementary school age division!
Ka-POW!


and we finished up with an award for best costumes! 


The weekly yoga class we do has been really helping with our hip abductor - related running issues. Emma's runner's knee didn't bother her (of course, there was wasn't a whole lotta running going on, but...), and I was able to run the whole 5k with minimal ITband pain. Don't get me wrong, it was still hurting, but it didn't cause enough tension to give the telltale ITband straight-leg-of-death stride, which is AMAZING, and I can't wait to tell her this week!

The icing on the weekend running cake was the annual Oklahoma City Memorial Marathon. I find it hard believe that it's been 20 years since the OKC Bombing. It doesn't seem that long ago.

This year, we did the relay, so that hubby can officially say that he's run every event in the Run to Remember, from the kid's marathon all the way up to the full. Relay teams are made of 5, which is good because with the 4 of us and our always present Uncle K, who is basically a TCR member anyway, we fit right in! 

The legs were divided up into two 10k's - Kurt & Emma, two 5k's - Evan & Me, and one 12k - John. 
This was Emma's very first 10k, so she was going to run us in to the finish!


After dropping Uncle K off at the start chute, we waited for him to race by at the start.


After we saw Flash off, Superman & Batman boarded the relay shuttle to leg 2, where Evan would run the timer through the most famous part of the race - Gorilla Hill. 


The crowd LOVED seeing a tiny Batman running through the course. We watched some of the GoPro footage last night and it was FABULOUS! They ate it UP. 
Gorilla Hill was just MADE for Evan to run through. 
Once he got to the third leg of the race, he transferred the timing chip over to Superman, who had escorted him, along with Flash, all through his leg of the course. 


and a butt slap to tell him he was good to go!
 Flash & Batman rode the shuttle back just in time for me to load my shuttle to leg 4 and hand Robin over to the two tired runners. Luckily, we parked in a GREAT spot RIGHT by the shuttle station, so they got to sit in the car with the heater on full blast until it was time to meet me at the end of my leg of the race.
UNfortunately, John ran so fast that I barely made it off the shuttle and they were calling my number, so i forgot to call them to let them know I had started my run!
Half way through, I remembered, but it was still too late. By the time we made it to the exchange point, we had a good 10-15 minutes of time to wait while the shuttle made it's way with the rest of the team in tow. (Which actually worked out well since Superman needed a bathroom break anyway).

Once they arrived, the transfer was made and Robin was off on the last leg of the race, and her very first official 10k! (Escorted by Superman)


Flash, Batman & I headed back on the sweaty/pee smelling shuttle to meet them at the finish line.



Here they come!!


We all got to cross the finish line together, as a team, and it was the BEST finish EVER!

Afterwards, we collected our Carl's Jr burgers and devoured them!
(We totally failed on getting to the free pancake breakfast that morning, so we were STARVING!)



Afterwards, we headed up to the memorial itself to relax in the memorial grounds. 



The kids got to go see the Survivor Tree, and hear its story. 


While the guys rested their legs from back-to-back races. 




It's always nice inside the memorial grounds. It's quiet and still, even with everything going on just outside the walls. And it's even more beautiful on the day of the race because the remembrance chairs and the fence outside are covered in medals, bibs, flowers, and notes dedicated to the memory of the 168 that died that day. 


Happy weekend, everyone!

(Want more? Additional photos/videos will be on our Castro Team Racing facebook page!)
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