Saturday, November 29, 2008


Pete is currently studying downstairs on "my" computer, so this will be a picture-less post, but I'll add some later.

First off, last weekend we went out to Pittsburgh to visit my brother, Aaron, who was in town from Hong Kong. We figured that if he flew around the world to be there we could take a 3o minute flight to see him. We had a great time hanging out with family and were pleasantly surprised when my cousin, Daley, and my Aunt Cecilia came into town as well. They live in Minnesota and we don't get to see them as often as we would like, but they came to visit after a conference in DC. Daley will be attending school in Pittsburgh this fall so they came by to check things out with the school and grace us with their presence. (Shameless plug: My Aunt just published another book [Kay, this is for you] about Oprah's book club. Check it out at Barnes and Noble or by clicking here). We came back to Philadelphia on Tuesday and prepared ourselves for the fabulous holiday weekend.

Thursday morning we got up, fully intending for Caleb to come brave the cold with me for my run. However, he was coughing had a runny nose so I checked his temperature (102!) and decided I would let him sit this one out. So Pete dropped me off in Fairmount Park and headed over to the airport with Caleb to pick up his brother. The run went well, but it was definitely harder to run without the stroller. Call me crazy, but I like running with the stroller. Anyway, I finished the 5 mile race in just over 40 minutes. I'm pretty sure I could have done it in 35 minutes, but at the last mile marker I was passing a girl who was about to give up-- she gave me a good excuse to slow down (not that I was looking for one or anything...) and I gave her some motivation to keep going. We finished that last mile in oh yeah 13 minutes, but she hung in there and was so excited that she ran across the finish line. I was pretty excited to cross the finish line myself :) I felt badly though, as we were leaving I heard a bunch of people talking about how they thought this race was a 5K not a 5M-- oops!

After the race we headed up to Pete's parents' place for some good ol' Thanksgiving Dinner. Julie, Brent and Aubrey-- friends from our ward-- came with us. It was nice to spend time with family and just sit around and be fed :) Pete's mom is a very talented cook and dinner was fabulous! We sat around and talked and looked at baby pictures of Pete and his siblings. (sidenote: Pete was the fattest baby I have ever seen. We're talking fat rolls on his face...) It was a great day and we really enjoyed ourselves.

Friday morning Pete helped his father around the house for a bit and then we headed back home. We didn't brave the madness this year-- Pete is convinced that you can buy anything online and doesn't see the need to stand in lines for hours on end. Top that off with the story of the Walmart employee who was trampled to death by stampeeding shoppers and there was no way Pete was going to go out.

All in all it was a fabulous Thanksgiving! We're so glad that we are able have family so close. Thanksgiving is by far my favorite holiday and I love that we get to share it with such fabulous people.

Wal-Mart Employee Trampled to Death

Shopping online is looking better and better.

Tuesday, November 25, 2008


I want to run the 5M Turkey Trot this Thanksgiving morning, but I'm finding myself playing chicken.

When I was running outdoors, it was nice out, so I always took the baby (sometimes babies when Charlie was here) and headed out for a run with the jogging stroller. I really like the jogging stroller because even though I have to adjust my arms so I don't cramp up, I like pushing the stroller, it keeps me going.

Since it has gotten cold out, I've taken my little running self indoors and have been resigned to running on the treadmill. I didn't think I hated the treadmill, but I do- I really hate it. However, it does force me to keep running, since the alternative (stop running, fall on my face, get laughed at by all the other gym attendees) does not seem pleasant.

Thus the dilemma-- since I will be running out doors, do I use the stroller to keep going? That would mean that I would subject Caleb to being out in the cold in the stroller for about 45 minutes to an hour. Not exactly material for mom of the year award.

That being said, I'm afraid that I won't be able to do it on my own-- no stroller AND no treadmill? Boo.

Should I be a good mom and let Caleb stay warm? Or should he have to suck it up for my general running health? Will an hour outside kill the kid? Any suggestions would be appreciated.

Friday, November 21, 2008

Life Changing

Today Caleb, Aunt Mandy and I went to see Twilight. The movie was good-- I was expecting it to be a lot worse, so I guess my low expectations served their purpose.

The best part? No, I won't spoil the movie, the best part came out of the mouth of a young girl in front of us. As we are leaving she exclaimed, "That just changed my life."

Yes, she is the future of America.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

And Miles To Go Before I Sleep...

Saturday Peter, Caleb and I joined some of the students from his school and participated in a "Walk a Mile in Her Shoes" event. One of our friends, James, helped put the walk together and we were glad to see that it was a huge success.

Basically guys from the class got together and walked a mile around the school in four inch heels. The purpose is to promote awareness of domestic violence-- which was interesting since it seemed like the women who drove by were all cheers and "way to go" while the guys who drove by looked at us like "there's no way I would ever do that." Thus the need for more awareness.

Just wanted to say thanks to James for working so hard to put this on and for all those who participated. If nothing else, Pete has a lot more sympathy for me and my footwear.

You can check out an article about the event by clicking here. And watch the video here.

Monday, November 10, 2008


I finally loaded my pictures onto the computer. Ladies and gentlemen, I present:

Caleb's First Halloween:

We carved pumpkins with our friends Dave and Anika while watching the Phillies win the World Series. It was a very productive evening :)

Caleb and our half carved pumpkin. We could have left it this way, since the squirrels ended up eating our pumpkin anyway. Oh well.

Ana with Caleb and Benjamin at our ward's Trunk or Treat. The kids all dressed up and they were so cute!

We're a very festive family. Really. I promise.

Some of the kids all lined up on the couch. They were not very cooperative. That's what you get with a bunch of infants I suppose.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

In Regards to Proposition 8

Much has been said about the elections over the past weeks (Shoot, over the past two years) so please pardon me as I drag this out a little longer.

Many people have heard about the monetary contributions made by my church, The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints to support proposition eight in California. "Prop" 8 as it has been endearingly coined (what, it's too hard to say proposition?) was an effort to define marriage as between a man and a woman, effectively banning gay marriage (for the time being at least).

Opponents to Proposition Eight have criticized the level of involvement that has been taken by the LDS church and its members. While I can understand the opposition's frustration, I also know that the LDS church has every right to get involved. However, the whole thing has unfortunately turned into a situation where one side hates the other side and we are no longer fighting to protect marriage, we are instead tearing each other down. One side says the other is bigoted, the other responds with accusations of destruction of all that is good. Maybe things have gotten a little extreme? Maybe we have lost focus, and perhaps we, as a church, have lost our Christlike attitude.

Here is an excerpt from a press release from my church, given this morning.

"... We hope that now and in the future all parties involved in this issue will be well informed and act in a spirit of mutual respect and civility toward those with a different position. No one on any side of the question should be vilified, intimidated, harassed or subject to erroneous information.

It is important to understand that this issue for the Church has always been about the sacred and divine institution of marriage — a union between a man and a woman.

Allegations of bigotry or persecution made against the Church were and are simply wrong. The Church’s opposition to same-sex marriage neither constitutes nor condones any kind of hostility toward gays and lesbians. Even more, the Church does not object to rights for same-sex couples regarding hospitalization and medical care, fair housing and employment rights, or probate rights, so long as these do not infringe on the integrity of the traditional family or the constitutional rights of churches.

Before it accepted the invitation to join broad-based coalitions for the amendments, the Church knew that some of its members would choose not to support its position. Voting choices by Latter-day Saints, like all other people, are influenced by their own unique experiences and circumstances. As we move forward from the election, Church members need to be understanding and accepting of each other and work together for a better society."

(All emphasis added)

For full text of the press release, please CLICK HERE.

Tuesday, November 4, 2008

Election 2008

Whether or not you agree with his policies-- Barack Obama was just elected President of the United States. What an incredible moment in the history of America, no matter what you think of his politics. Shoot, we still talk about a black man having lunch at the White House nearly 100 years ago, and here we are with a black President.

Pete drove people to the polls yesterday and it was amazing to see the community come together. There were little old ladies on oxygen waiting to vote for a black man, waiting to vote for the first time ever. There was the Puerto Rican woman who gave Caleb a full on Catholic blessing, in Spanish none the less.

Watching the speeches last night, I was impressed by both McCain and Obama's ability to see the good in each other-- why can't they do that throughout the entire campaign? There were so many horrible things said about both candidates throughout the campaign, but I really think the words that were said last night were real and sincere-- maybe I'm being silly.

Not so excited about having a Democratic majority in Congress, but at least it is not a fillibuster proof majority. And don't worry-- if anyone can lose the majority in two years, the Democrats can do it :) Remember? "Yes we can."

Monday, November 3, 2008

What It's Like to be a Parent

This story is often referred to as a way to explain what it is like to have a child with a disability. However, I think it pretty well sums up what it is like to have a child in general-- or what it is like to WANT to have a child but not be able to get pregnant.

We all have dreams, and sometimes we are so consumed with those dreams that we fail to realize, we're in Holland...

"Welcome to Holland"

When you're going to have a baby, it's like planning a fabulous vacation trip - to Italy. You buy a bunch of guide books and make your wonderful plans. The Coliseum. The Michelangelo David. The gondolas in Venice. You may learn some handy phrases in Italian. It's all very exciting.

After months of eager anticipation, the day finally arrives. You pack your bags and off you go. Several hours later, the plane lands. The stewardess comes in and says, "Welcome To Holland".

"Holland?!?" you say, "What do you mean "Holland"??? I signed up for Italy! I'm supposed to be in Italy. All my life I've dreamed of going to Italy"

But there's been a change in the flight plan. They've landed in Holland and there you must stay.

The important thing is that they haven't taken you to a horrible, disgusting, filthy place, full of pestilence, famine and disease. It's just a different place.

So you must go and buy new guide books. And you must learn a whole new language. And you will meet a whole new group of people you would never have met.

It's just a different place. It's slower-paced than Italy, less flashy than Italy. But after you've been there for a while and you catch your breath, you look around…and you begin to notice that Holland has windmills...Holland has tulips. Holland even has Rembrandts.

But everyone you know is busy coming and going from Italy...and they're all bragging about what a wonderful time they had there. And for the rest of your life, you will say "Yes that's where I was supposed to go. That's what I had planned".

And the pain of that will never, ever, ever, ever go away...because the loss of that dream is a very significant loss.

But...if you spend your life mourning the fact that you didn't get to Italy, you may never be free to enjoy the very special, the very lovely things...about Holland.

© 1987, by Emily Perl Kingsley.