Monday, May 14, 2012

The Best and Most Rewarding Job in the World

What a weekend!

I had a lovely half day off on Friday, which began with an intense four hours of work in the morning. Once I got home, Vic and I grabbed a quick lunch then took off an intense {for me!} 25 mile bike ride. It felt great to be out there on the bike, working {sweating} hard, and enjoying one of my favorite activities with one of my favorite people. As a bonus, the weather was spectacular - perfect temperature, amazingly crisp, blue skies, and not a cloud to be seen. Truly a perfect-weather day.

Side note: From the time Valentino was about 7 months old until he was almost 3, we used to ride our bikes together a couple times/week {Valentino was in the trailer behind Vic}. Last summer, when Valentino was 3, the time finally came - it became a struggle to get him in the trailer, and alas, our "family rides" came to an end {and consequently, the lbs started creeping back on my body...}. Now, most of our riding is done individually or when we have a week-day off together.

Saturday was pretty close to a "perfect" day for me. The weather was pretty amazing once again, and I started the morning with a 6 mile run around the lake. It was pretty cool {about 53*}, so there was some fog on the lake:

Early morning fog on Shelley Lake
After I finished {1:06... not too horrible for me, especially since I walked a bit due to sore legs from the bike ride the day before}, Vic took off for a mountain bike ride and Valentino and I hung out at home. Valentino was very cranky, so I set him up for some "quiet time" in our bed with cartoons on. This gave me a chance to peter around the house a bit, cleaning and straightening up. Vic came home and surprised me with an early Mother's Day gift {he works Sundays, so we were celebrating the day on Saturday}:

A Nathan hydration belt!
{Now I don't have to run w/a bottle or stash a bottle someplace while I run!}
Then it was off to Porter Farms for strawberry picking! We had a great time, and the berries are SO delicious. NOTHING beats fresh picked NC strawberries! They are better than candy, I swear!

Vic and Valentino in the strawberry field
Our bounty - they are truly that red and shiny in person!
After dropping the berries off at home, we headed over to one of our favorite parks, where Valentino played and we went on a hike {side note: I was wearing flip flops, since the hike was not planned whatsoever... I will now be sure that I always stash shoes in the car on the weekends!}.

There was a birthday party going on at the park and this stormtrooper was there.
{Ignore my closed eyes... I love this picture because Valentino is clinging to me for dear life - he is usually very outgoing and loves costumed things. Although, those things have always been animals, now that I think about it. This guy was a little intimidating!}
Sunday {Mother's Day} was much like any other Sunday - Valentino and I mopped the kitchen and bathroom floors, did laundry, vacuumed, ate lunch outside at Panera, then went grocery shopping and to the library. I had big plans to bake some strawberry muffins and to make kabobs for dinner, but the impending rain put a damper on my mood and ambition... so once Vic came home from work, we headed to Five Guys for dinner {mmm... health food!}.

 Now that I type all of this out, I realize that it was truly a non-stop weekend, full of activity - just like we like it!

Since Friday was a whirlwind of a day, I didn't get to post my usual "Friday Love." Instead, in honor of my fifth Mother's Day, I bring you four reasons I love being a mom:

1. Experiencing a tiny miracle every day. That little miracle grew inside of me, and now I get to watch him grow, learn, and experience this world on a daily basis. I ask myself all the time what I did to deserve such an amazing child, who, despite his faults, is absolutely perfect in all of his being.

2. Bringing childhood back. Not only do I get to act goofy, watch cartoons, and play with toys, but I get to see birthdays, holidays, and new experiences through the eyes of my child. His excitement and innocence about these events brings me as much, if not more, enjoyment as he gets out of it. It brings a whole new meaning and love for special events.

3. Getting to do things my way: This only partially applies to being able to be "the boss" ;-) Mostly though, I love being able to create new traditions for our family and to do things that, as a kid, I would've wanted my parents to do {which pertains to everything from how we eat, how we speak in front of him, discipline, and how we talk about certain subjects, to traditions and letting him do certain things}. I grew up in a pretty "open" environment {meaning, I had minimal supervision at any given time}, and Vic grew up in a very rigid, old-fashioned environment. We're trying to raise our children in a traditional home {so somewhat in-between to conservative}, so it will be interesting to see how our kids turn out.

4. Feeling complete and full of purpose. In my young twenties, I wasn't sure I wanted children ever... I wanted to do whatever I wanted to do, whenever I wanted to do it. Now, I can't imagine not having a child. Sure, there are times when it would be nice to have the extra money, time, and energy {and to not have the responsibility!}. In reality though, all of that seriously pales in comparison to having this little person in my life who reminds me of my purpose on this Earth and who makes my heart feel so completely full and thankful.


  1. That Storm Trooper pic cracked me up!! In V's defense, he does look pretty freaky ; )
    So glad you had a wonderful Mother's Day!

  2. Thanks Shannon! And yes, the guy was a little freaky. I didn't let it show, but I felt the same way as Valentino! I absolutely hate costumed characters - you never know who is in there!!!

    I hope your Mother's Day was great!