Kristen & Benton Brown

An Unexpected Start

An Unexpected Start
Parker Trimble Brown was born April 9, 2010.

I'm One Year Old

I'm One Year Old
Parker will be 14 months old on June 9th.

Monday, April 25, 2011

More Running Excuses...

I got some great feedback about the ease of running and the excuses we all make for ourselves to not run, eat better, or make an effort to get healthy and stay that way.  Notice, I did not mention weight loss.  My original goal was not to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight.

After I had Parker in April of 2010, I slowly started walking with him in the stroller 4 days each week.  By October of 2010, I was able to walk for an hour whenever I went out and I averaged about 3 miles.  I turned 30 in September and felt good about my weight, even though our bathroom scale had broken and I wasn't sure what my true "number" was.  At this point, I just judged my relative health by the way my clothes fit and how tired I was when I went to sleep at night.

In December 2010 I decided that I could maximize my hour-long workouts if I started running - jogging - galloping some during my hour I committed to exercise.  I had to give up some of my long-standing excuses in order to get started.

1) Stuff jiggles when I run - you know you've thought it.  Solution - I wear two bras (sorry, that may be TMI for some of you) and think to myself that when my butt jiggles, I'm literally working to "run my *ss" off.  Works every time to motivate me to go a little farther!

2) If I start running and lose weight and get more toned, then Heaven forbid, I would have to keep running!  As crazy as this sounds, I had a fear of failure towards working out - if I started and it worked, what if I quit and gained the weight back and my new clothes didn't fit.  Solution - I was at a point that I would rather be healthy and happy and working out regularly, even if I have to do cardio 4-5 times a week for the rest of my life.  My grandmother walked 6 miles everyday until she was 80 - I can at least knock out 3.2 running.

3) It's a pain to have to take showers and wash my hair everyday if I workout.  I know this sounds superficial, but with my old schedule, it was impossible to squeeze in an hour a day to workout, muchless shower again and dry my hair.  Solution - If I straighten my hair, then I wear it for two days, otherwise I have curly hair that takes much less time to fix.  Dry shampoo, baby powder, and perfume can also be your best friend, just don't tell Benton!

So get yourself motivated and go do something today!  I ran 5 kilometers in my best time this morning (34:30 mins) and then walked another 4.3 kilometers.  I would have hit another 10K if it hadn't started raining.  Don't let yucky weather be an excuse either!


Sunday, April 24, 2011

Easter 2011

We had a great day with our family - Parker slept until almost 8am (after partying from 12am-2am for no apparent reason), we went to church at FUMC Coppell with our parents, and had lunch at our house with the family.  Parker crashed from 1:15 - 3:15pm and then we did his three Easter baskets - one from us, and one from each set of grandparents.  We took a 4 mile walk this afternoon and enjoyed seeing all of the families at the parks this afternoon enjoying food and fellowship.  Note - its probably not a good idea to throw your Easter eggs into poison ivy-filled wooded areas and then release your kids to go find them!  I embarrassed Benton by giving a nice family a lesson on "leaves of three", but I couldn't walk by and let those kids get covered in the stuff!

I hope all of you were able to spend time with loved ones today and reconnect with your faith.  When I was up last night wrestling with my child, John 3:16 came into my mind and it stuck with me throughout today.  It's hard for me to imagine that God loves us so much he could sacrifice his sweet baby boy... As our sermon said today, we can get up each morning because He got up! I need to remember this on days when I think I have troubles because there aren't any too great for Him to handle.  Amen!

Can I please eat the flowers?

How can he not be a future golfer?

Parker with buddy, Ben Barnard, at Will Winfrey's train party yesterday.

He loved the John Deere tractor - maybe for his next birthday....

Pictures after church on Easter Sunday, just like my family took every year.

Lots of Easter loot!

Thursday, April 21, 2011

Running Ramblings (Err, let's call it Jogging Instead)

I've been writing this post in my head over the last two weeks when I've been out running, well jogging actually.  I have come so far since I started adding in some cardio to my hour-long walks last December, but I'm still at about a 12-minute mile or 7 minute kilometer with or without the jogging stroller and my bundle of joy.

I still can't say that I'm addicted to running, but I do so love the side effects I've seen so far. I regularly go out with Parker four times per week anywhere from 45 - 60 minutes.  The longest I've run without stopping is 60 minutes, but my speed is an area for future improvement.  I have my first 5K next Saturday and I'll be running with my best friend, Hayley.  Our goal is to finish in 36 minutes, about 12 minutes per mile.  I made the mistake of looking up stats for some local 5K's and thought that 36 minutes would be good for our age range - wrong!  Apparently some marathoners think 5K's are a sprint and finish in around 22 minutes.  I might have been able to do 6-minute miles in high school, but no way will I be back there again.

One of the things that does amaze me is all of the excuses I've had for not taking better care of my self since my soccer days.  My neighbor asked me last week if I had always been a runner - HA! I've pretty much done nothing since March of my senior year of high school, a pretty lazy 11 years and I wondered why I kept gaining weight.  The biggest difference now is that I have time to spend an hour everyday taking care of myself and spending time with Parker.   I also eat almost all of my meals at home and don't eat whatever is in the staff lounge or pick up junk because I've been too busy to stop and eat when I'm first hungry.

Starting to run also required little investment.  No gym membership to feel guilty about, no early morning alarm clock to snooze, and the weather didn't stop me in the winter unless it was colder than 40 degrees all day long.  I bought a used jogging stroller for $50, ran in old shorts, tshirts, and tennis shoes, and splurged on some new upbeat songs on iTunes so I'd have a good playlist.  I use the $2.99 NikeGPS App to track my pace, distance, and calories, and I keep a calendar in my kitchen with my running stats and PR's (personal records) as they come.

After 4 months of getting back into shape and losing some weight, I've invested in some new Asics,  sunglasses, Under Armour tanks, and Nike shorts.  The new gear makes me excited to go out, even if I'm not inspired to run some hills or go out in the misty foggy humid mess that I ran in today.  I made it to 10 kilometers today, even though it took an hour and twenty minutes and a lot of Parker's patience. I won't say I'm a runner yet, but I sure do like the feeling I get when I can forget about looking at the clock, I don't count the songs, and I don't mind the route.

I promise, if I can do this, anyone can.  Remember, I was the cross country and soccer coach that couldn't run a mile around the block with my girls.  And I was 23 years old at the time!  I can't believe that I had the luxury to run everyday after school and didn't take advantage of it.  Seven years later I'm in such a better place - who would have thought!

I have more excuses to share in later posts if anyone needs some motivation.  My advice is to find a system that works for you - if you're not a morning person, don't plan to start your workout at 5am.  I sleep as late as Parker will let me....


Saturday, April 9, 2011

Parker's First Birthday Pics

 Too early for a flash mom...

 Parker & Mommy

 Parker & Daddy

 Posing with Mimi and Daddy B (Benton's parents)

 Jackson, Sophie, & Bea

 Jenya & Ella

 Uncle Mark & Pops (My Dad and Uncle)

Doug, Ruth, & Duke 

Benton & Jason (My Brother) 

 Jason & Erika


Tuesday, April 5, 2011

Birthday Countdown

I have three more days to get ready for Parker's birthday party on Saturday while Benton is enjoying the lush gardens at Augusta for The Masters.  I'm not resentful that Benton is checking off a bucket list item without me - I've schedule some girl time in soon to catch up.  I bought 12 pounds of hamburger meat today and I've been to Michael's twice in the last two days.  I know he won't have a clue what is going on around him, but he is my child and he does love an audience.

My mom asked me today if I was sad that I had boxed up all of Parker's bottles and baby food paraphernalia.  I told her I was proud of us for making it this far and I feel content that I've enjoyed as many moments as I could have in the past year.  I feel so blessed to have have Parker in our lives and be able to work part-time.  Turning thirty has been the best year of my life.  I am so thankful to have Benton as my husband and as Parker's daddy.  We make a pretty good trio!