Dante continues with a steady stream of one-liners, and I know I'm forgetting many of them, but here's a few that I can remember -
We were at the mall yesterday afternoon, and as we walked past Victoria's Secret, he commented "Hey, that looks like a nice store!"
He was looking at one of my race t-shirts the other day and he pointed to one of the logos on the back and asked "Who is this proud sponsor?"
And today at dinner, he told me that his friend Alex at school said she didn't want to marry him - she wants to marry another boy in his class. I asked him if that made him sad. He replied, very matter-of-factly "No, I'll just marry Sarah. I forgot to ask her today, so I'll ask her tomorrow."
Carmine gets more and more entertaining every day, too. He's becoming Mr. I Want To Do It Myself. I was feeding him yogurt at dinner tonight, and he was getting really mad and kept yelling and gesturing toward the spoon, so I put the bowl in front of him and gave him the spoon, and he fed himself. It was messy (Gabe was really grossed out), but he did better than I thought he would.
He also put his vest on the other day all by himself. Granted, he put it on his head like it was a hat, but he put it on! And he tries desperately to put his shoes on by himself, but it'll be a little while before he can do that one succesfully. He gets so mad when he can't do it, though : (
He loves playing with his brothers more than anything in the world. Last night he was up in their room playing trains with them, and he was driving his train along the tracks just laughing and laughing. And yesterday morning, the three of them were all sitting on the couch watching Scooby-Doo. It was beyond cute.
I'm hoping, of course, that this eagerness to be independent, and just like the big boys, is going to mean he'll be potty trained really, really early. I can hope, can't I?
Now that the dust has settled from the boys moving into their new room, Gabe was able to get a few nights of really good, solid sleep, and it showed in his behavior. The week after they moved in, when he was staying up half the night, he had some problems at school. Nothing major - just being loud and disruptive and silly - but it was out of character for him, given how well he's been doing lately. But now that he got caught up on his sleep, it's so apparent that being tired really throws him off.
It's been really tough to make that sink in with him, though. He complains that sleep is boring, and he hates sleeping. It's more fun to stay up and play. And even though we've explained the direct correlation between him staying up late and being tired and getting in trouble, as opposed to going to sleep early and having a great day - it just doesn't matter to him.
And we can't MAKE him go to sleep. So we'll just keep working on it, and hope that he has more early nights than late nights. He can handle one or two late nights a week, but more than that, and things start to go downhill.
Also related to the dust finally settling post-construction, I'm in full-on organizing and cleaning mode. The house was such a shambles for so long - stuff piled everywhere, dust all over everything, boxes and books and clothes shoved into closets just to get them out of the way..... it's been driving me batty!!!
So I'm now working in a frenzy to get it all put back where it belongs, and made a lot of progress this week. Our formal living room actually looks like a living room again, and the dining room table is no longer buried under stuff. It feels really good to finally feel like I have my house back!
I'm also now completely obsessed with marathon training. I still haven't registered for Hartford, and I still have several weeks before training would officially begin, but I'm ramping up my mileage a bit to see how my body responds. I'm still increasing at a safe rate, but I want to push it a little bit now, and see how it goes.
To that end, I did a 5-mile run today. The training plan I'm following has a bunch of parameters for training runs, and it says that if I want to train to run a 3:40 marathon, I should be able to run 5 miles in 39:10. My 5-mile run today - 38:30 : ) That's a 7:42 pace. For 5 miles.
I'm still paranoid about getting injured, and I'm still nervous that this isn't going to work out for some reason, but those thoughts are more often getting pushed out by the fact that this just feels like my year. I really feel like this is going to happen. I hope my instincts are right.
And yes, I did say up there that I'm going to train to run a 3:40, not a 3:45 (my current qualifying time). Based on my current 5K and half-marathon PRs, I should be able to run a 3:40. It's aggressive, but it's doable. And I figure if I train for 3:40 and fall a little short, I've got a few minutes breathing room, so I'd still be ok.
This weekend I'm shooting for 13 - 14 miles, but I'll be keeping that at a slower pace - around 9-minute miles. The week after that, I'm going to take it easy a bit, but then the following week, I'll do a sort of test run of the training plan - something the book recommends - completing one of each of its "key workouts" in a single week. The first workout will be a track workout - 5 x 1000m at 4:16. The second workout will be a 3-mile run in 22:45. The third workout will be a 15 - 20-mile run at 8:48 pace. If I can complete those three workouts in one week, then I've picked the correct training plan for my fitness level.
It'll be a big week, but I'm excited. I'm nervous, but I'm excited. When I was running today, I felt healthier and stronger than I ever have.
There are still a lot of unknowns, and there's still a lot of work to be done, but I could very well be on my way......