All three boys are off to a good start in the new school year. Gabe and Dante are in their third week, and are starting to settle in. We're still dealing with 'out-the-door-in-the-morning' and 'just-walked-in-the-door-in-the-afternoon' chaos and craziness, but that won't ever go away completely. As long as we can reduce it a little, I'll be happy.
They're both happy with their teachers, and although Gabe was a little bummed that some of his best friends are not in his class this year, he seems to be doing ok and adjusting well. And aside from being completely exhausted every night, Dante is doing great.
Carmine started last week, and he did great, as I expected he would. His first full day of school was a Wednesday, and he only goes to school Monday through Wednesday, so Thursday through Sunday, every time we drove past his school, he'd yell "I want to go to school today!"
The only problem is that he thinks that now that he's going to school, he should be going on the bus, like his brothers. Except when he says that, he says he wants to go on the bus like "your brothers" - because I commented one day to him about how 'your brothers made a huge mess in their room,' and he doesn't really understand what 'your' means, so he's been referring to them as "your brothers." It took me a few minutes to figure out what on earth he was talking about, but once I did figure it out, I couldn't stop laughing).
His reports about what he did at school mostly involve the sandbox and cars, so I think he's having fun : ) He still has his share of funny mispronunciations - he was playing a racing game with his cars the other day, and I heard him saying "On your MARCH, get set, go!" He also still calls thunder "Unther."
But mostly he's a very articulate chatterbox, and continues to just walk up and say hi and chat with just about anyone. We went to the store after his first day of school and he told everyone he saw that "I went to school today!"
I took all three boys to a Paw Sox playoff game Sunday by myself, and it couldn't have gone better! Gabe and Dante paid attention and cheered and jumped up and down the whole game, and Carmine did really, really well - made it the entire 9 innings!
And for some reason the stadium was deserted, so even though we only had general admission tickets, we were able to move down to box seats, and ended up just a few rows back from the field, right near home plate. And, they won and advanced to the next round of the playoffs, and we got to see the team celebrating on the field with champagne - a great afternoon all around!
We're definitely going to be taking a trip up to Fenway next summer - I'm already excited for it - it's been WAY too long since I've been to a Sox game, and it's going to be so fun to share it with the boys!
Labor Day weekend - our farewell to summer - was less than stellar, weather-wise. We had a fun family party in CT on Saturday, and we did make it to the beach Sunday, despite the cloudy, gray weather, but Monday it poured most of the day, so we ended up catching a movie. Not how I wanted to close out the summer, but it was fun for all 5 of us to go together.
My heart aches a little every time I look at this picture. I LOVE our beach days, and am so sad when they come to an end.
One good thing about the season coming to an end, though, is that now when the weather is nice, we can just stroll onto the beach whenever we feel like it, and although it can still get a little crowded if it's a warm day, it doesn't compare to the summer crowds.
There is a lot to be said for having the tourists gone. We probably won't go for a full, all-day beach day again until next summer, but even spending an hour there is lovely, and we're lucky to have that option.
Running is going mostly well. I'm still in the 'training but not really training' mode, and with mostly cooler, drier mornings, I've had some great workouts. Still mainly focused on the October half, but also hoping I can have a good race at the 5K I'm doing in two weeks.
I've really become less and less of a fan of the 5K, but I do want to get better at the distance, so I threw a few shorter repeats into this week's track workout, and will do the same next week. After running so many 1200s and mile repeats the past few weeks, doing just 800s and 400s seemed so strange. The 400s flew by!
The rest of this week is going to be cross-training, though, since my old shin injury is flaring up a bit. It's been pretty quiet for nearly two years now, and I think it was aggravated by a combination of two 40-mile weeks in a row, plus the fact that my shoes are nearly ready to be replaced. I've been massaging it like crazy, stretching, and icing, and I'm hoping that that TLC plus a bit of rest is all I need. If it doesn't feel better after a week, I'll put a call in to PT.
I'm not freaking out, and I don't think it's a huge deal, but it does have me a little bummed out. But I have nobody to blame but myself. Clearly 40-mile weeks are not doable for me - at least not 2 in a row. Lesson definitely learned!
My running coach certification is officially official. I got my CPR and First Aid certification, and received my coaching certificate in the mail yesterday.
Now I just need to get myself organized so that I can start getting clients and doing some coaching! I had hoped to get started with that process over the summer, but there was just no time. So now I'm getting going on setting up an LLC, getting insurance, and making some business cards. Lots to do, and it feels overwhelming at times, but I'll get it done.
I'm still getting used to the idea of thinking of myself as a coach, too. Long before I even thought about pursuing this, I often had people ask me advice about running, and I was always happy to give it, but followed it with a disclaimer that I wasn't an expert and was just giving them my two cents.
And when people ask me questions now, I still kind of feel that I should add that disclaimer. I need to get comfortable and confident with the fact that I am trained in this topic now, and I am qualified to help. I think once I've actually created a few training plans and truly coached a few people, it'll be easier to feel that way.
In addition to the cranky shin I mentioned above, I've also been dealing with bunion issues. I have them on both feet, and the one on my left foot was acting up at the very end of my Boston training (causing a really nice freakout just a couple weeks out from race day).
It quieted down, and hasn't bothered me since, but a few weeks ago, the right foot started hurting. Because the bunions cause misalignment of your big toe, it puts a lot of stress on the joint right below that toe, and mine are being subjected to a lot of wear and tear.
I saw my podiatrist, and he assured me that my shoes and orthotics are fine, and are not contributing to the problem in any way. That's good news. Unfortunately, though, the bunions and associated joint issues are not going to go away by themselves, and at some point in my life, I'm going to need surgery to fix them.
It remains to be seen when that point in time is going to arrive, but as he put it "the pain will be my indicator." Right now, the pain is intermittent and not debilitating, and there's no reason for me to rush into surgery as long as that continues. My course of action is to just back off a bit on my mileage and ice the affected toe.
Once that stops working, though, and the pain doesn't subside with those measures, it's going to be time to get it fixed. The problem is, getting it fixed is going to mean 3 weeks in a cast/on crutches, followed by several more weeks in a boot, and a recovery period of 4 - 6 months of NO RUNNING. And I need both feet done, which is going to mean going through this process twice.
As of right now, it doesn't seem imminent, and being able to just put it off is a good thing. But knowing that it's looming out there kind of sucks. And beyond not being able to run for so long, let's not even mention the logistics of trying to tend to three children while on crutches!
I'm going to attempt to just forget about it for the time being, though. I'll cross that bridge (slowly, on crutches) when I come to it. And I will be thankful that, although it's going to be a major inconvenience when I do finally have to deal with this, in the grand scheme of things, it's not really all that bad. Gotta keep it all in perspective and be grateful for how fortunate I am.
My feet may be ugly, and they may have issues, but they've carried me through many, many miles already, and I fully expect them to carry me through many, many more.