Thursday, April 29, 2010

Tribute to a Jogging Stroller

This is me running before I had Jack.

Okay, in the interest of keeping the 9th commandment, the previous statement is a lie. But this really WAS me...after I had Jack:

And this:
So maybe my thighs could support a 3rd-world orphanage with sustenance in an emergency for a few days. But they can run 26.2 miles (slowly, but hey, people, let's be positive!) without too much struggle, both before and after a baby!

When I became pregnant, my first thought as far as a must-have baby item? A jogging stroller. I determined early on that I was NOT going to stop doing things I love and/or living my life because a baby was in the picture. Therefore, a jogging stroller was more sorely wanted than a good breast pump (like I ever used that milk machine, anyways!).

In addition to being a runner (pseudo, anyways), I am a cheapskate. So when my mom found a like-new running stroller at a garage sale for $50, she snatched it up for me. Bonus: it also doubles as a bike trailer. The purchase was downright thrilling for me.

And so began my relationship with this blessed piece of gadgetry.

Exactly 6 weeks to the day after Jack was born, I started running again. When Jack was 2 months old, I started taking him with me....admittedly in the snow. Don't worry, he was bundled up like crazy and loved every minute, I promise -- he fell asleep every time.

This stroller is a 2-seater. It's not the nicest brand and doesn't have all the features of more expensive strollers. Yet I fell in love with it when it helped me get my figure back....and my sanity.

On days when Jack was feeding every 20 minutes or so it seemed, I could buckle him up, hit the road and magically, he was so distracted by the Idaho tumbleweeds that he let me go a 10k without whining to be fed.

When Nick deployed when Jack was 6 months old, taking my son for a run helped me calm that crazy-missing-my-husband-will-he-ever-come-back feeling in my chest.

This stroller has been on every road in Mountain Home, ID as well as off. It's also carried other children:

It works suprisingly well in the snow:

I once calculated that Jack has spent over 1,000 hours in this chariot. It's his 2nd home.

To be fair, he's also spent a fair amount of time in Grandma Candi's jogging stroller:

But our yellow beast of burden will always hold a special place in our hears. Jack even shares it with friends:

I once managed to fit 80 pounds of child in it at once and complete a 2-mile run. Two twins and Jack. Don't ask what I was thinking.

Today, from all the use, this stroller is definitely showing some wrinkles. There's a hole in the bottom that bugs and worms have been known to crawl through mid-run, delighting Jack to no end. The snaps for the rain shield are broken. The foam on the handle is ripped and slides to the right constantly.

Yet I can't think of a baby item I love more. I will be sad when we eventually part. :-(

Stroll on, InStep jogger-biker.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Impromptu Photo Shoot

At the beginning of this self-portrait session, Jack wasn't entirely sure what his daddy was trying to do.
But it didn't take him long to catch on!

I'm thinking Jack has the same modeling genes Nick does.

This is when Nick told a funny joke. :-)

How could you not love these fat little fingers?!?!

Sunday, April 18, 2010

Boys in Spring

Today we took advantage of the gor-geous spring weather and went to a park we just found out about. Thank you, world, for not telling us about this place when we lived much closer to it. But thankfully, we now know this park's wonders and basked in them this afternoon.

Jack could throw rocks (or tiny rock molecules) into the water for hours. Once, he found an old tuna can in our backyard with a few tablespoons of rain water in it. I kid you not, the kid spent 20 minutes throwing little gravel pieces into it.
My heart swells to bursting when I see the two loves of my life interacting together. As Jack grows, he certainly identifies with his daddy more, and nothing could make me happier!

Isn't he cute in his little gangster/preppy shorts? As a frugal mother, I always buy things one size ahead so he can wear them longer. Jack is moving up into 3t.....but apparently not quite yet.

Klaus was loving this adventure too, as there was an off-leash dog park. Though I was quite suspicious of the tall clumps of grass everywhere.

This one is my favorite from the day. Look at his sunkissed-cheeks, his dirty face, his mischievous expression, his precious pink tongue, his naturally-highlighted locks falling in gorgeous chocolate-browns. Okay, so maybe I'm biased, but I truly don't think my son could get any more beautiful! I am totally besotted with every aspect of him!

Lick life.

Monday, April 5, 2010

Donate Your Old Phone, Change Someone's Life

So I recently discovered a super-cool project spearheaded by a Stanford senior to expedite medical service in Malawi and thought I would share it with you.

Hope Phones takes your old cell phones (used, broken, working, whatever) and recycles them into a simple sort of 911 service for those in impoverished, rural Malawi. It would take me too long to explain, so go the site, click on "How Will My Phone Make an Impact?" and watch this video:

They even pay for your postage! How cool is that? It took me 3 minutes to find the old cell phone, print the label and drop it in the mailbox. It's a pretty awesome, effortless way to change someone's life on the other side of the world.

Be global.

Friday, April 2, 2010

Husbandly "That Didn't Come Out Right" Quote-of-the-Month

The other day, after cleaning up the 17th spill of the hour, I bemoaned to Nick that even though I spent half of my life cleaning, you couldn't tell for all the chaos around the house.

Glancing over, he helpfully suggested, "Well, maybe if you spent three-quarters of your life cleaning instead of just half, it wouldn't be like that."

What more can I say?