Javelina with a Little Lady (again!)

For some reason this blog has been hard for me to write. I just haven’t decided where to go with it…. The truth is, Tea running was met with criticism to the race director just days after she finished. My awesome race community came to the rescue talking about how wonderful my Little Lady is. I can not thank you enough for loving my Lady. But to the critiques wondering why a 9-year-old is running a 100k and the race director is allowing it, do your research said “9-year-old”  happens to live with said “race director”… funny how that works…

 

But enough about that, she is qualified. Well, maybe not this year. The amount of 9-year-old little girl tantrums we had was pretty special.  No not about computer time, her phone being taken away (she doesn’t have one), or not being able to go to the mall, all tantrums were about the time she spend training. She was disappointed. We went on runs and she cried. She knew that she was nowhere near ready, and I spent time trying to tell her it was ok it really wasn’t her fault (and may have spent a lot of money at Ivivva trying to convince her the right outfit would help). The reality is she only ran when she was with me, and I was too broken to run so she had to run with +1 (which she actually likes, he listens well :) ). So training was nowhere near where it was last year and she knew it was going to hurt.

We both did practice napping...

We both did practice napping…

We are very good at napping training....

We are very good at napping training….

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Our last run together was suppose to be 10 miles but turned into a pathetic 6 with the complaining and commiserating we both did. But whatever, we both knew we were in for pain (me feeling super broken and wondering when I would have to call in a replacement “run 100k with a Little Lady”) and we stepped to the starting line.

The cutest runner out there! And rocking her Run Steep and Ivivva gear!

The cutest runner out there! And rocking her Run Steep and Ivivva gear!

And by step to the starting line I mean fumbled to grab our stuff (put clothing on) and watch the 100milers start. Tea loves her ultra peeps and was really excited to see Catra (who isn’t!). So we watched them leave and got our shit together. Nathan’s happens to make bottles that are great for her little hands so I bought her an extra (if you don’t carry enough water at Javelina you are screwing your race) and I carried two bottle too. And we were off… off to pain… off to an adventure together… off to our second buckle together.

The first loop went fine. Nothing notable really, Tea was just excited to see friends out there but was somewhat disappointed at how slow we were. We came into headquarters and +1 had my pack ready. Knowing we would be out there in the heat of the day a pack was necessary as a “just in case”. We took a minute and off we went again, pretty much alone. You know, many people thought the trail was going to be crowded, maybe even I did a little, but Tea and I went for long stretched not seeing anyone even on this loop. You know who we did see?

We could be friends with this guy, at a distance...

We could be friends with this guy, at a distance…

 

 

Our first rattle snake out on the trail. “Gosh” I thought “good thing we got that out of the way”. And on we went… Now the faster people are coming at us. Going counterclockwise is not our favorite so we vowed to walk as much as we wanted and to not feel bad about it. We picked up the pace a little and started to scoot over for a fast guy coming our way when he gave a “OH SHIT” and JUMPED! It took a minute to see it, and then we heard it! This guy was hidden well!

NOT a friends!

NOT a friends!

 

Afraid that he wasn’t going to move out of the way and someone might catch him in a bad mood we waited for a couple minutes warning people “Big circle people!” until our not so friend left. We were warned about a snake ahead 2 other times but only saw these two. Apparently they wanted to party in the desert too.

 

It was about this time that I started to have a “oh shit that hurts” moment but we were running with a friend so I didn’t mention it. A little while after Jackass Tea and I stepped off the trail to talk “hey Hunny, my ass really hurts” “Mine too Mommy” ummm…. Neither of us have ever dealt with ass chafing before and this Momma was not prepared! Of course vaseline didn’t help, I knew it wouldn’t … (oops) and so we were in pain. The awesome “hey Mommy it looks like you peed you pants” comment she made earlier (isn’t she sweet?)  is telling me it might be a little more humid out then I had planned for. We ran into Jean Ho who kindly shared something with us (totally can’t remember the name!) but I think we were to far beyond repare at this point.  Hobble in to finish the silly second loop is what we did, both thinking and not mentioning to each other that if we couldn’t fix this we were done.

As we ran in to headquarters I saw the always amazing Angela Shartel “I have a question” I yelled and she joins us trotting in. “Umm… we need desitin, do you have any?” “Hold on I’ll find something!” Yup, just like superwoman! Over she comes with some RunGoo and I give Tea some first “Oh my goodness Mommy, it feels better already!”. Angela saves the day!

 

Food, warm clothes (last year we were freezing so we were over prepared this year), and off we head into the impending darkness. Tea wanted to hold off on caffeine until it was dark but she decided to try some coffee before this loop, not a fan, caffeinated gels it is, This loop was just going to be a long walk with Tea reminding me how close she was to her crash time along the way and we were already close. But we made it to Jackass, the most welcoming party you can ever come across in the desert in the dark!

Together we aren't afraid of the dark!

Together we aren’t afraid of the dark!

We helped a couple friends off the trail to safety.

We helped a couple friends off the trail to safety.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Walking out of Jackass (Jackbutt as Tea calls it) lead way to both of us complaining. Without saying too much, Tea was unhappy. So now in the middle of the night walking with my daughter we both cried, a lot. I always talk about how amazing it is sharing a journey like this with your little person and the deep bond it creates, conversations it spurs, and insight into their world you get. It’s eye opening, but sometimes it hurts. Tea shared with me memories of the past that you wish your child never was to be privy to. It reiterated the failure I felt in my ability to protect my Littles. So we hugged, walked, cried, and talked about how thankful we are for times like these, out on the trial, just us, free from the world and able to share honestly and openly.

All we could say as we finished are 3rd loop was “BED”. And we slept.

Up at 4 (somethingish) and moving by 4:45, time to finish this! What made this loop special was seeing all the 100 milers on their last loop. Last year we were so late in the race we hardly saw anyone. This year the smiles, high fives, and hugs really made it special. Yes it was a lot of walking, but the day could not have been more beautiful and the people as well. The best part of a race with Tea is by far the finish. Watching her decide our run/walk schedule, making deals with herself along the way, and then her always strong finish! All smiles of course.

Running to the finish! Thanks for the photo Jess Soco.

Running to the finish! Thanks for the photo Jess Soco.

 

We finish, my Mom drops all the kids off with me, and now I’m Mommy to 5 who just finished a super long 100k adventure and just really wants a nap! Apparently none of my little people did though….

Attacking Uncle J LU. He doesn't stand a chance.

Attacking Uncle J LU. He doesn’t stand a chance.

And finding adorable little friends.

And finding adorable little friends.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I have to say thank you to everyone out there who stopped to tell little Tea how amazing she was. Your stories of how she inspired you really touch my heart. Thank you to my Ultra Family for loving my Little Lady and seeing how strong she is!

As always Javelina was an amazing event (not that I’m bias). Great volunteers, great friends, and a great party! I count myself a very lucky Mother to be able to share all this with my wonderful daughter.

At the after party. Poor Tea didn't ant to leave and tried so hard to keep herself awake!

At the after party. Poor Tea didn’t ant to leave and tried so hard to keep herself awake!

 

 

 

Categories: Adventures with Littles | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Killing Time

After a summer of fun its always hard to get back into the swing of school, driving, rushing, homework, oh yeah, and that living inside thing. We are fully in the mix right now and *almost* there.

Tajh and Tea go to and awesome school and last years one drop off/pick up with pretty nice. This year Tay is going to the school of his dreams (seriously he is expected to climb trees and plays in the desert) which adds anything drive into the mix. Luckily his school is close to the big two. Unluckily the drop off is an hour apart (pick up is perfect for Littles to nap which is pretty nice) so creative we must become with our in-between time. Well… it hasn’t been too hard…

Running

Running

Running...

Running…

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Running...

Running…

Running...

Running…

and more running!

and more running!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We are lucky and have multiple trail heads a short drive from Big 2’s school. Every day the 3 Little Littles and I drive somewhere and head out for a “run”.  Hats, water bottles, games, exploring, whatever it takes we “usually” get almost a mile in with some “upness” involved. Not only do with run,

We sword fight.

We sword fight.

Boulder.

Boulder.

 

Help little brothers learn to boulder.

Help little brothers learn to boulder.

 

Kick it.

Kick it.

Hydrate.

Hydrate.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Meet new friends. Red tail hawk ( I believe) buddy loves doing fly overs.

Meet new friends. Red tail hawk ( I believe) buddy loves doing fly overs.

And spend time taking in the views.

And spend time taking in the views.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

When all the adults in your life run you learn really cool tricks.

"Look mom I'm pretending to eat a salted carmel GU!"

“Look mom I’m pretending to eat a salted carmel GU!”

Oh and you get caught with markers in your room at times. Its ok calmly explain how you were out for a run and got attacked by wolves. My can’t get made about all the “blood”…

 

At least they can pose.

At least they can pose.

So to some it up, we are exhausted! But having tons of fun..

 

It's a rough life running 4 days a week... better find someone sneaky to nap.

It’s a rough life running 4 days a week… better find somewhere sneaky to nap.

 

Categories: Parenting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

5 kids. 1 Mommy. 1 Big Peak. Humphreys.

I don’t like to compare my kids to other peoples, I get it, they are all unique and special in their own way… But mine are pretty badass!

Tenny is 4. She is adorable, funny, a pain in the ass, and full of energy.  She loves running but gymnastics is definitely her thing. This tiny little body is packed with muscle…. but she is only 4…

Most of the time when we hike she gets worn, because wearing two babies is apparently my thing

Spending time in colorado she spent a lot of time on her feet. The largest hike being nearly 4 miles with just under 3,000 of elevation gain (Island Lake). After hiking up, she slept on my back majority of the way down. Although she is clearly tough, the idea of taking a 4-year-old on an all day hike (oh yeah and 4 other children) alone is somewhat frightening. Apparently I like watching my life flash before my eyes…

When +1 said he had work to do in Flagstaff I said “great we will join you! I want to take the kids up Humphreys myself”. I’m pretty sure to anyone that just sounds stupid. 5 kids, age 11-3, almost 5 miles  and over 3,000 feet of climbing, sound like a good time?

They were all thrilled to be woken up early.

They were all thrilled to be woken up early.

Getting ready for an all day trek with everyone is stressful in itself. We rolled up the the parking lot and they all ran off to play. I did my best to round them up for sunscreen and to throw some packs on the big ones. Tenny was stoked to hike and took off in a sprint, which resulted in a potty break before we could even hit the trees “I have to pee now Mommy!” She almost got off the trail…

And we are off!

And we are off!

 

The first half hour she ran, a lot. Girl was excited to be on her own two feet. By an hour in it was snack time, eat and hike peeps we gotta keep moving.

Just keep moving.

Just keep moving… in American Apparel leggings of course.

*Note- I do not have a lot of pictures. My phone is super ghetto and the battery does not last long anymore. Even on airplane mode trying to save the battery for as long as possibly, I was nervous I wouldn’t be able to get a picture at the top if I wasn’t careful. Sorry…

So we snacked every half an hour or so and they kept moving. They love to play together while hiking and their was some sort of Pokemon/horse game going on. I was happy they didn’t need me at this point as Tru was in the worst mood ever! My Little hiking buddy needed a nap and was not having it for some reason.. ugh… there may have been threats of bear attacks if he continued to scream which did cause them to subside enough for him to fall asleep for a while. Pokemon/horse continued on.

I missed a turn. I know I suck. So we scrambled up. Teagan continued to question me and all I responded was “up”. We trudged on with Tajh behind Tenny to keep her from sliding down. Eventually we found the trail, hit the saddle, and into the rocks larger then Tenny.

Up!

Up!

“Tajh just push her butt up” I commanded after watching him try and have her step on his hand, which took forever. “This is awkward…” because he is 11 and everything is awkward.  At no point have we rested at all, I knew we didn’t have time in the day for that. We did though move off the trail if anyone was coming toward us. One of these times Tenny took the opportunity to lay down on a large rock “I just want to go to bed Mommy”, “Yes hunny, me too, lets go”.

So sleepy...

So sleepy…

She picked a nice view.

She picked a nice view.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

On we went. If was windy and cold up top and holding hands was necessary to help the Little Lady up the steps larger then she. No one was complaining, other then about being cold. I sent the Bigs ahead as soon as we saw the summit, and not gonna lie, I got pretty darn excited hiking up with Tenny.

Up go the Big's

Up go the Bigs

 

5 hours and 5 minutes after starting Tenny summited Humphreys Peak.

My Littles.

My Littles.

Second nap of the day for this guy.

Second nap of the day for this guy.

Snacks

Snacks

 

Rest

Rest

 

Snacks

Snacks

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

We sat and she ate her peanut butter cup (yup just one). The Big’s and I discussed letting her take a nap, but at this point it was pretty late. After a 30 minute rest we started down the mountain again. They discussed how heading straight down the scree would be much fast “see mommy then we just head through the trees to the car”. Sigh… That’s a no.

Having left without our sandwiches we had only snacks all day, everyone was starving. We daydreamed about pizza, all of us, and hiked. The horse game came back (no pokemon this time) and Tenny fell, “That was (insert horses name)’s fault. I’m ok”.  Although none of them ever had imaginary friends, they really commit when playing in the mountains.

We finished with only pizza on our minds, 4 1/2 hours after leaving the summit (down is hard when you are super short). Tenny was asleep within 2 minutes of driving but woke in time to eat. They probably all passed right out at bedtime you assume? Of course not!  They would not go to sleep! Does anything exhaust my Littles? I’ve yet to find it! When asked what he favorite part of the day was Tenny responded “seeing the top”, yup, that’s my girl. All my Littles continue to amazing me. I’m one proud Momma.

All 5 kids took in 3,850 calories over the nearly 10 hour day.

 

 

Categories: Adventures with Littles | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Running with Little People. Bear Creek Trail

If you have never had the opportunity to run with my Little People, I’m sorry! They are by far some of the funniest running partners you can find. They had the opportunity to play with a GoPro on their run on the Bear Creek Trail the other day. As you can see, they enjoyed it! Tajh spend the next day editing and I promised I would share with the world!  (Do not blame me if you get motion sickness! These kids are not pros… yet…)

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Why Crewing is Harder Than Running 100 miles.

Crewing is harder than running 100 miles. That’s right, I said it.  Look, you train for 100 miles (in theory). It’s you goal to finish, to PR, to win, whatever, but it’s yours. Then you rope in friends, family, whoever to spend day and night (and maybe day again) taking care of you. There is no training to crew (unless you count daily life with children). We are thrown into this crazy world that YOU chose and we play the hurry up and wait game. All the while you run, that’s it! You just have to put on foot in front of the other! How nice that must be…

I have 5 kids, I know how to handle little people, this makes me a great crew person. Every ultra runner pulls a Benjamin Button at some point in 100 (even front runners to a degree). They forget to eat and drink, can’t speak, and possibly have soiled their pants. They need a Mom. They need someone to think for them. They need help. As the crew person it is your job to know your runner. To know when they will make mistakes. To know when they need help. To brief their pacer even after they have, “now he said he won’t want you to tell him to drink more, but do it anyway”. So Mom you become, and being a Mom is hard.

Now lets add in the driving all over the place. Directions are great in theory, but when you are in the middle of nowhere with no cell service and directions that the race director came up with, “yeah that’s good enough, everyone knows where mount Timmy is and they will totally understand the aid station is to the left most corner of the right face”,  it’s stressful. What if you are late? You have everything they need! What if this messes up their entire race? It’s a lottery race they will never get in again! YOUR race lies in MY hands and I’m in the middle of nowhere…. Heart attack time.

And now it’s dark. Yay. I really don’t like the dark as it is, and I’m tired. A little nap? No time for that. All those splits they gave you? yeah they are totally off them now. You have been trying your best all day to predict when they will come in and they screw with you every time. Don’t they know this is messing with your game? No nap, push through, light will come, shit I haven’t ate or drank anything all day…

Eventually they finish. You are elated for them. Now they want to relive EVERY second of the race with you. While you try and pin your eyelids open and convince then you aren’t sleeping through their exciting tales they decide they need EVERYTHING from the care parked nearly 20 miles away (or 50 yards, whichever). You feed them, change them (maybe just bring them a change of clothes but it’s all the same), and get them warm. Sleep? I would love some… Then they ask about your day, how everything when for you ALL day long. The moment you begin sharing they beginning snoring… Sigh…

Now if your runner drops it’s even worse! All you will hear about for the next 2 months is the “shoulda”, “coulda”, “woulda”… There is no winning. You will agree they shouldn’t have quit and they will be upset that you didn’t push them. You will tell them they could have kept going and they will convince you they couldn’t have walked another step (although they did walk down to the car to leave, but who’s counting).

Alas, the panic attack, Mothering, stressing, multiple runs to the car, driving, getting lost, lugging huge bags, planning stuff, overthinking, organizing, reorganizing, life of a crew person is hard. You silly runners putting one foot in front of the other for 100 miles have it pretty darn easy.

Categories: Running | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Island Lake? Psh my 4-year-old can do that.

Did someone say epic? Oh yeah, that’s how we roll. A journey with 5 kids into the unknown? Yes please. Even better, let someone tell me there is “lots of snow up there” and apparently I decide it’s an even better idea. With +1 at the lead I strapped Tru on my back and headed to Island Lake.

Now we have done part of this journey before. Last year we drove to the parking lot at the end of South Mineral campground and headed up Ice Lake trail. To head to Island Lake you take a turn at some point, that’s all I knew. Last year I was in shape, this year I haven’t done anything in a nearly a month, I knew this was going to hurt, at least a little.

Now let’s remember, little Tenny is 4. I had NO clue how long this hike was going to be, but I knew from the start she was going to make it on her own 2 feet.

Off we go!

Off we go!

The first hour was a nice hike. Upness was there, but everyone was moving pretty well with Tenny moving at “4-year-old who randomly gets boosts of energy to catch her siblings” pace. River crossings were met with helping hands from siblings, and Tru took his first nap of the day. I’m pretty sure this kid only likes hiking for the naps!

First river crossing. They got larger!

First river crossing. They got larger!

See, larger.

See, larger.

I get by with a little help from my siblings.

I get by with a little help from my siblings.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I figured snack after an hour and then maybe another within the next half hour, they had other plans. These kids were hungry! So they ate and hiked and Little Miss Tenny got a second wind, even if it only lasted a little while.

Snack break turned into birdwatching time.

Snack break turned into birdwatching time.

Upness

Upness

"Mommy van!" -Tru

“Mommy van!” -Tru

Now about snow, I don’t like it. I am not a fan of being cold. So we hit some snow fields, and some more, and some sketchier ones. I spent a lot of time asking the kids to watch their feet and asking (re-asking) +1 if it was safe.

More snow.

More snow.

Snow

Snow

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Still snow.

Still snow, and Tenny!

Tenny does not like having cold and which did lead to some freak outs EVERY time she fell…which was a lot. Luckily +1 did help her through some of the extra crazy spots. And then we saw it:

 

photo-12

The amazing blue of the water could been seen through the ice layer, which the kids promptly began throwing rocks at. What kid doesn’t want to watch ice break? We had lunch, threw more rocks, and laid our shoes and socks out to dry. And then got attacked by marmots-

 

I can confidently say the best playground for children is a giant frozen lake over 12,000 feet in the sky. The only way to live.

 

Ice Breaking.

Ice Breaking.

More Ice Breaking.

More Ice Breaking.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Rock throwing,

Rock throwing,

Time to leave.

The snow fields on the way drown were beyond sketchy. Sadly my phone died (then came back to life further down the mountain) so I wasn’t able to get any of the epic shots on +1 skiing on his feet down crazy snow fields at 12,000 feet or my Littles getting cold butts as they sledding (sans sled) down. We will have to head back and make it happen.

Drinking from waterfalls "best water ever!"

Drinking from waterfalls “best water ever!”

"Mommy next time lets bring no water and just fill in the waterfalls" Good plan kids... good plan.

“Mommy next time lets bring no water and just fill in the waterfalls” Good plan kids… good plan.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tenny napped on my back (girl deserved the break!) , Tru on +1’s (so thankful to have another adult for this trek) and we all made is safely back down. In case you are keeping track, My 4-YEAR-OLD hiked for 3 1/2 hours over 4 miles up with nearly 3,000 elevation gain. Yup, she is bad ass. All in all it was nearly an 8 hour day and so worth it! If only for the marmot eating Tay’s pee off the ground story…

 

Dirty shoes picture requested by Tay.

Dirty shoes picture requested by Tay.

and some others.

and some others.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

And let me say, my Little people who have been fighting and struggling to be friends the last few months were AMAZING the entire 8 hours. Helpful to one another and kinder then I could ever ask for. Thank you nature!

Oh yes, and my adorable pollen nose little buddy. Best hiking friend ever! Anytime I fall and give a "shit" under my breath I'm met with "ok mommy?". Love him!

Oh yes, and my adorable pollen nose little buddy. Best hiking friend ever! Anytime I fall and give a “shit” under my breath I’m met with “ok mommy?”. Love him!

Categories: Adventures with Littles | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | 5 Comments

Silverton!

It’s Silverton time baby! Headed up a little late Friday with all the Little People. Van pack full of food, breakfast in their snack bins, and no real plan in mind. Decided to keep it simple this trip and not think too much, if you know me, that’s a clear lie.

I will say my planning sucked for this trip. Nearly everything I have for the kids I have bought myself in the last 6 months. I like matching shirts (so I can find them easier if they are lost), comfy clothes, basically whatever it takes to keep things as simple as possible. Yet, I found myself with nothing, and a whole lot of shopping to do. With drama always on my door step, getting out of town took longer then I wanted.

So we drove, FINALLY, the 6 of us. We stopped when we wanted, snacked when we wanted. Other then a little more whinning then I would have like, it went well! And then they saw Silverton:

 

Obviously they are a little odd… but I kinda like how Tay calls marrying the same gender “flavor”. He is well on his way to a comedy career.. or incarceration… a Mother can never be too sure!

 

They talked about how much they love small towns and they ran around on the playground and all came back out of breathe! Oh, a Hardrock loving Mothers dream. They were all so happy to be “home”.

We headed off in the mountains to sleep. It was too late for me to care to put up a tent, van it was. Tru laid on me for a while and was nice enough to inform me “no poop Mommy, no poop”. Thanks Buddy, glad you don’t plan on pooping on me tonight. Everyone found their “spot” and sleep came. The morning was my favorite:

 

On to the fun adventures! I have some exciting plans for my out-of-shape little ultra runners! Stay tuned!

Categories: Our Homeless Summer | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , | Leave a comment

Sorry, Momma don’t pay.

I do not believe in allowance, I never have. When I was growing up we didn’t have much money. My mom worked hard to be sure we had the things we wanted. Did I get every new toy I wanted? Hell no. Did I get the newest fancy clothes? Nope. But when it came to things that were good for me (activities, classes), I had them. My family owned a business and I began working from a young age. at 15 I had 2 jobs over the summer, one being full time. I was always working hard because no one was ever going to hand me anything.

My kids have always grown up being a part of the household. If I ask you to sweep, pick up someone elses’ mess, wash the dishes, anything, you do it. I have always been met with a “yes mommy” because we are a family. You eat here, have a roof over your head, toys, clothes, everything you need, so you participate. I do the majority of the work, but you must be willing to help when I need it.

Divorce sucks. When you have been the “on call” parent your children’s entire life, you have done a lot of research and come up with a pretty concise parenting plan. And then the game changes on you…. All of the sudden kids are given an allowance, not taught to save and instead buy toys that would to totally be off-limits with your parenting, and food choices seem like Halloween at all times…. ugh…

Learning to parent through this is far from easy.  I refuse to change my values, the values they are grown up with, but of course they wish I would. They are little, you can not expect them to understand “because its good for you”. So alas my helpers are harder to deal with. There is always push back, asking to be paid, expecting things that were normally held as “treats”.  Does this anger me? absolutely. I wish they could hold on to the values I have instilled in them. But, that’s not the case. Now I must learn to hold my emotions. I must learn everything will take a little longer. Nothing will be as simple as it once was.

I suppose just another episode in the saga “Divorced Parenting”

 

Categories: Parenting | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Time to get out of this place!

I still consider myself homeless, I am currently squatting. Yes I am in a home, but it is not my home. It is one room for my kids and I, which really is fine, but again it is not my home. Now that the kids are out of school is time to take this homeless show back on the road. Back to Colorado, back to tent living, back to spending our days adventuring and not inside.

I hate raising my kids inside. Although I love their schools (Tay is heading to school next year too) I still daydream about unschooling (google it) in the great outdoors. I daydream about having a home sometimes. Nothing crazy or big, something small and comfortable. I love having my children close, the idea of having space for them to get lost inside is silly to me. Also, all that stuff to fill a giant home seems ridiculous and materialistic. A tiny house with a wonderful outdoor space sounds lovely to me. A giant garden, outdoor living/cooking space, chickens, dogs, forts, and everything else that comes with it. A space I could lock up and leave for months at a time as we wander the world seeking adventure.  Oh that would be the life…

So on to our summer fun! Tea has picked a bunch of races she is really looking forward to (Sky Series is calling my little mountain Lady) and has requested we hang in Silverton for her to train. All the other Little are looking forward to being free and dirty outside. We are hoping to hook up with some of our Vagabond friends to party all night with. My plans to bag some crazy peaks alone with 5 Littles my seem optimistic, but I like a challenge.

Now it’s time for me to plan, clean, pack, unpack, repack, over think, get stress, and finally head out on my next great adventure. Being a single, vegan, homeless, poor, running bum, Mom to 5 Littles is always an adventure, I’m ready to take that adventure up in elevation.

Categories: My world as a Single Mom of 5 kids, Parenting, Running | Tags: , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Crewing for 5.

What did I do this weekend? Well crewed my +1 at a 100 mile race with my four littlest Littles of course!

Let me just say here, my +1 is a very talented runner. Not only is he talented, he has a no quit attitude everyone should be jealous of. I often spend my “free” time crewing telling people how wonderful he really is. Watching him race is always a mixture of pride, admiration, stress, anxiety, and joy. I love every minute of it! But enough about him (he can write his own report!) this is about ME!

We left Friday, late. Now mind you, we had ZERO plan, but I like leaving early in the morning and that just didn’t happen. We honestly just decided to head out around 10:45, with zero snacks, toys, music, or any other “keep the kids busy” activities. I am the Queen of road trips so this is very unlike me. Between leaving late and overall feeling terrible, I was off my game. I spent the ride sleeping, sternly informing the children of how I WAS trying to sleep, and passing them snacks when they refused to say quiet. Oh and freaking out at them to not make a mess since we were not in our van. Yup, I am a clean nazi at times. We arrived at the end of the pre-race briefing and headed to our camping spot.

Like I had thought, camping was way too close for comfort for me. I wouldn’t normally mind, but a bunch of people trying to get to bed early while my little hoodlums who have been trapped in a car or hours throw a tent party did not seem like a good idea to me.  I sent +1 to the tent for the night and the Littles and I took the car (no big deal really). We listened to music and chatted until way too late and finally fell asleep.  You know what is awesome? Being awoken at midnight to a toddler SLEEPING ON TOP OF YOU POOPING IN HIS PANTS. Yup, fully asleep and having terribly sick poop in his pants… perfect. Life? yeah, couldn’t be better. So I grab some paper towels and get to cleaning. Ugh… who needs sleep before crewing all day?

It sure was a pretty view to wake up to though.

It sure was a pretty view to wake up to though.

We awake and head to the start. Nothing too exciting here… just a bunch of people heading out for 100 miles

+1 is there somewhere. Photo by a 9-year-old that clearly is still asleep.

+1 is there somewhere. Photo by a 9-year-old that clearly is still asleep.

 

And off we headed back to camp. A spot the runners would come through but we could not crew from this time. The kids hung with friends, well except Tru… He got exiled to the car for a much-needed nap. See, here’s where I am a genius (actually not just here, I am a flipping genius always),  I bought an awesome baby monitor. Before our trip last summer I needed a way to leave the children in a place (car, tent) and walk a short distance away (locking said car AND with them strapped in their car seats). If anyone wants in (or out!) I will hear the car AND I can hear if someone in the car wakes up and needs something. So Tru napped, Bigs played, and I watched across the lake for +1. He rolled in, I waved, he didn’t wave back, and we headed to the next spot we could crew from.

Kids and new friends. Life is good. so far...

Kids and new friends. Life is good. so far…

I tried to nap, kids made a mess, I cleaned it up, gave +1 his two new bottles, he ran off, headed to the next spot. My head hurts… Oh the crew life.

Honestly, things were working alright.

The kids passed the time-

IMG_0930

A little racing up mountains.

Oh and playing with nasty horse water. SAVE THE BUGS!

Oh and playing with nasty horse water. SAVE THE BUGS!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

I should have offered him his ultimate direction pack with ice in it here, but I didn’t. I promised it at the next crew spot and sent him along. Moving on.

Now +1 can usually be found in the front of the pack at a race. I count on him being near the same people he has been so I can usually judge when he is coming in. Not only that, I can usually look at the distance and elevation (guessing terrain) and guess pretty well when he will be coming in. So when he was late, the kids were pissed. The questions, interrogations really, of when +1 was coming in, where is he, what happened, and WHY oh WHY is he not here yet?!?! began flooding in.

“Snacks, we need snacks lady!”

“No, I need to watch for +1. He can come in any minute!”

Tru falls asleep on my back

IMG_0937

Tenny falls asleep on the pavement, basically in the runners way.

yeah...

yeah…

Tru wakes up.

“SNACKS”

Tay who has been holding +1’s pack with ice like a diligent little crew man gives up, hands me the pack, and heads to play.

Finally get word +1 missed a little out and back section and went back to check in at the aid station… Oh goodness this is no good…

Tenny wakes up.

“SNACKS!”

Me- Watching…watching… watching… not +1 not +1 not +1

Oh shit I haven’t seen Tay in a while…send Tea to check on him… OH! There is +1! Tea come help!

He isn’t in the best of moods but also isn’t a disaster like I would have expected. I give him some caffeine, his pack, and food and send him on his way. Tay apparently was building an awesome fort with a friend he had met and was having a great time, thank goodness someone had fun on this stop! On to the next one, and some snacks., lots and lots of snacks.

More fun was had! Apparently sticks and pine cones make for a great crew game of baseball!

Creativity makes the time go by.

Creativity makes the time go by.

Next stop the kids saw their friends from camp and were super stoked to play for a few minutes. I started to notice +1 was making a move up but tried to not show my extreme excitement. The kids had a ton of snacks but were definitely showing signs of the long day.

Somehow shoes became an issue. Crew lady and baby mover, I'm on it.

Somehow shoes became an issue. Crew lady and baby mover, I’m on it.

Back to our horse water/running up a mountain spot from before. We met some nice people who offered my kids a warm shower. Should I be offended or not? The Ladies decided to clean up their hands and feet a little and Tay checked out an awesome conversion van with a pop up. Tru wrecked himself-

"It's blood"

“It’s blood”

PLEASE don't clean it!

PLEASE don’t clean it!

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Tenny wrecked herself, and in all the waiting Tru fell asleep on me and +1 came in. Crewing with a sleeping baby in your arms is not so easy. Luckily he isn’t too needy and headed off.

One sleeping kid stayed sleeping, another fell asleep in my arms while waiting in the dark at the next aid station. Said Little Lady who shall remain nameless decided to awake from the dead (asleep) to scream, since clearly she needed to crew +1 and not sleep in the car. Look, it was dark and she fell asleep, I needed hands free. +1 had been slowly moving up and I knew that would only continue. Tea join her in the car, I spotted +1’s light coming in, Tay and I gave him what he needed and set him moving again as fast as we could. I was giddy inside with how well he was doing and that brought a new but of wind to my tired sails.

Now the drive to put everyone to sleep. I had one more spot (campsite) where I could crew him before the finish. For once this crewing journey I was alone and so happy to see my +1 roll in. He had an amazing couple miles and I could tell he was ready to race to the finish. I sent him off again, excited to have my day of crewing with kids coming to and end, and excited to see him finish!

I hoped back in the car…Oh shit, what’s that smell?? Oh yeah.. shit… So Tru and his *poop in him pants while sleeping* last night was special, but again tonight?!? Then it all makes sense, he REFUSED to use a non real bathroom all day AND refused to go outside. Ugh… does he know what family he is a part of?!?! Pooping outside is what we do! So now I find myself at a boat dock restroom in the middle of the night cleaning poop off a toddler I had to stir awake… luckily he was someone cooperative. Off we went to the finish!

Watching +1 finish was amazing. Not only did he wreck the second half (I told you he was talented), but I also managed to pull off crewing with 4 Little People in tow. YAY! Although exhausted from the day, they did (mostly) enjoy spending their day crewing (or is that just the promise of a beach day?).We all survived! With some cuts and bruises maybe, but we survived!

Let me just say it here, Crewing IS harder than racing. Yup that’s right, and I’ll say it to your face! I am tired, sore, and I’m pretty sure I could eat my weight in food. So now I’ll get back to letting the children watch TV while I *try to nap.

My life currently in a panoramic photo.

My life currently, in a panoramic photo.

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

Categories: My world as a Single Mom of 5 kids | Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , | 4 Comments

Blog at WordPress.com. The Adventure Journal Theme.

Follow

Get every new post delivered to your Inbox.

Join 103 other followers