Saturday, January 29, 2011


I did it. And I'm still alive.
I have a blister the size of a penny on the bottom of my foot. But I'm alive.

I had pulled my right calf muscle a few days ago, wearing a wedge heel in our rocks out front, but I had my therapist husband work on it for the past few days and it felt 100% the whole race.

So... if you ever need a good therapist.... let me know.

The race was fun! I got there with only a half hour before start time and wandered around for a good 15 minutes trying to find the tent my running chums had set up. Then I went from port-a-john line to port-a-john line trying to find the fastest one and was absolutely SURE I would miss the start of the race. I was still in line for the bathroom at 7:56 (race started at 8am). Luckily their clock was slow (either that or I'm a super fast pee-er and shoe tie-er) and I made it to the start just in time. So there was practically NO TIME AT ALL to get all worked up and nervous.

The course out at Schnepf Farms is basically that........ a course around farms, or the fields of the farm anyway. I prefer running on dirt so it was fine by me.

They had mile markers all along the way but I was able to keep track of my time and distance on my own because of the awesome Christmas gift Jeff gave me.
Behold..... a Garmin Forerunner 110:
I LOVE IT! It's a GPS watch that basically connects with satellites to track your distance. It times how long it took you to run and your overall and per mile pace for the distance as well. Amazing.

But to get to the point. My hope was to run the 13.1 miles in the 1:30 to 1:40 range and I DID IT!!

My time was 1 hour 33 minutes.
Or another way to say it would be 93 minutes.
Which is the EXACT time that my friend, Rob, predicted on the previous post's comments.
Rob -- How in the world did you do that????!!!!!

So, yay!! I made my goal.
But...... double yay......... I won overall female!!
Can you believe that?
As much as I want to be incredibly happy for myself, it really all depends on who's running that year. Last year the first female finished in 1 hour 16 minutes. Crazy!

It was fun though. I won a plaque and $150 certificate for a new pair of shoes.

Jeff and the boys were at the finish and it meant a lot to have them there. This year, in addition to the bounce houses and helicopter, they brought out live reptiles for the kids to pet.
Griffin, Kai, and Treyson LOVED that part!
--Along with all the free candy and balloons they handed out at the booths, of course. --

Thanks for your support everyone!

Friday, January 28, 2011

Ready to Run

I'm running my first half marathon tomorrow.


I'm not super nervous because I've accepted that, this race being my first, I've nothing to compare it to.... No time to beat.... No expectations.

Of course I've done some math in my head (my usual race pace x 13.1 miles) but we'll see. I don't want to say what that time is unless I make it... or beat it. :)

My training has gone okay. Holidays make it hard. My brother-in-law's wife, Shanna, was going to run it as well and actually was the driving force behind our 10 mile run on CHRISTMAS DAY!

I know you probably think that sounds crazy but.... really?...... after lunch on Christmas, there's never much going on, right? Besides wrapping paper clean-up and naps.

Anyways, back to buisiness.....wish me luck tomorrow!

Here's a link to the crazy course, if any of you care.

Wednesday, January 19, 2011


At the end of last week, Jeff noticed some bees flying around one of the pillars on our house.
It looked like they were scouting out a place to live.

Within a day, they had moved in, despite our efforts to convince them otherwise by spraying them with the hose.

Griffin (and Jeff) were the most concerned (and scared) but the bees left us alone, for the most part.
However, a beehive on the corner of a house is not... nor will ever be... a trendy, desirable decor element. So the bees needed to go before they got too comfortable.

We asked our knowledgeable exterminator friend to come over and take care of things yesterday.
He told us to use the side gate and garage as much as possible for the rest of the day because they'd be flying around mad and confused.

The below picture was taken of just the corner where their "new home" was to be, but the bees were flying around like this ALL OVER the front of our house.
They were EVERYWHERE!!

I took another picture when bigger numbers started to emerge...

.....Not knowing that a few hours later, I'd get some photos like this:

The weirdest thing was this patch of bees we found 30 feet away from the rest of the group on the house.
My guess is these were the protectors who's job was to make sure nothing happened to the family. They had failed and therefore were exiled to die alone...together.

Either that or they tried to transport the queen bee and only made it this far, sacrificing themselves to give her a proper burial.

It gives me the creeps thinking about digging through a pile of dead insects, so we may never know the answer.

Monday, January 17, 2011

I should be laughing at myself.... but I'm not.

Sunday night, December 19th, was the day before Griffin's winter break started. That night I had a great idea!

I was going to drive around the corner to the school and park where it would be possible to see the faces of all the parents, who forgot the break had started, and were dropping their kids off.

Wouldn't that be hilarious?! Picture it...

The businessman dad who usually goes to work right after taking his kids to school now has to drive them all the way back home before his commute.

Moms, still tired and in their jammies, pull up to the school. They realize their mistake, slump their shoulders and shake their head. The look of annoyance and defeat on their un-makeup-ed faces.

Well.... I wish I could end this post with some classic pictures of those parents I just described, but my plan was scrambled by Jeff working that morning and my own laziness. It didn't seem worth it... waking my boys up early to sit in our van and freeze..... just for a few laughs.

Today, Civil Rights Day, almost made me one of those parents. And while I didn't even get as far as to dress Griffin in his school clothes.... I DID wake him up earlier than necessary (which woke Kai up) and rushed him through breakfast.

I've been had.
Anyone else?

Sunday, January 16, 2011

For Elder DeWitt

On Christmas Day 2010, I found out that my brother Kevin, who is serving a mission in Australia, still checks up on my blog.

I felt so guilty depriving him of pictures and stories of my cute boys. So I'm hoping this will make up for my slackage.

We are all SUPER excited to see you Kev! 9 1/2 more days!!

Love ya!!

Dollar Store Fun

My kids would say we don't go enough, but we make trips to the dollar stores quite a bit!

Griffin had a buck to spend that he earned at the DeWitt White Elephant party. No, it wasn't a gift he opened but we can't remember exactly how he got the dollar. Something about Uncle Alan (my dad's brother), offering a reward to whoever could withstand a tickle session without talking or moving or something. ..... Any family out there remember what it was?


It always takes Griffin F-O-R-E-V-E-R to choose his toy. At this particular dollar store, we saw something there we hadn't seen at others.

A fossil egg.

The egg was made of sand and came with tools to dig out the dino bones burried inside.

He discovered 7 bones:
(Don't you love how our kitchen counter looks like crackling ground?...Gives it the "Wait a minute! Are those REAL fossils?" look.)

Here it is all put together:

Thanks dollar store!

Thursday, January 6, 2011

Farewell 2010!

I'm starting this post to journalize the remainder of the year I didn't cover, but the driving force behind me is the promise I gave to my mom. I told her I would post pictures of the shnazy white elephant gift Jeff ended up with this year at our Selin/DeWitt party.
Another driving force is to get rid of pictures still on my camera while proving the major need for a better memory capturing device.

First up: Superstition Farm
While still hot weather, I took Kai and Treyson out to see the dairy and "petting zoo" (which turned out to be about 5 animals you could feed out of your hand through a fence and a rooster that ran around). Funny how it always works out this way, but their favorite part, even more so than the ice cream they gave us at the end of the dairy tour, was this dog and it's ball throwing device. Kai AND the dog could have done this for HOURS!!!

Onto Knotts Berry Farm:
It's by far MY family's favorite theme park. We go almost every year.
The boys loved it, of course. Jeff was not able to be there because of work and my parents were a big help staying with the little kids for most of the day while I got my fill of the roller coasters.

I already posted about Halloween COSTUMES but have yet to recap the festivities. At our church Fall Festival, we had booths set up amidst the Trunk or Treat. A fishing booth, donut eating booth, and digging through guts for bones booth.
The Gardners have a Halloween Dinner every year with delicious, sometimes gory looking food. And lots of fun! We opted to make one cute treat (Griffin did a great job on the ghost faces) and one "EW!!" dish. Puff pastry intestines with a taco, guacamole filling.

Here are some other memories unrelated to any holiday.

Kai was trying to be helpful by asking if he could get Treyson and himself some Goldfish crackers for a snack. I said, "Sure. Just put some on the table for you and some on the table for Trey then put the box away." (We always buy the big box.)
This is what he thought was a fair amount for a snack:

And later,following Kai's definition of "serving size", Trey decided to grab himself some gum:
----There are four pieces left in the box which he finished off a few days later in another sitting. I know, I know. I take full responsibility. I had put the box back in the exact same spot. ---
Some months I'm better than others but coupon shopping is something I try to do regularly.
This particular trip, I was at the register checking out and the cashier had to call the manager over to approve the sale. Apparently I had the new "highest saved total" of the day. Now, I know there are WAY better shoppers out there but I was pretty proud that day. So I made myself a sash out of the extra long reciept:

Jeff worked so hard to get the backyard looking beautiful this winter. Griffin was able to mow the lawn for the first time and did a great job!!

So here it is Mom....
What you've been waiting for:
When you open a white elephant gift and the first things you see are Richard Simmons videos, there's a good chance you'll be getting some fanciful workout clothes to go with it. I had not anticipated the matching set though. Way to go Selins! Next year I fully intend to regift this with a gigantic curly wig and some bright white shoes. And maybe, just maybe, an at home spray tan kit with body oils.

A sad part about this Christmas was that we taped the whole morning with our video camera and took zero pictures to document. But the theme for Christmas 2010 at our home was definitely TRANSFORMERS. The boys were given more than they could appreciate in one day, but they loved every minute of it.

It was fun seeing Treyson get into it this year.
A few days ago, while eating yogurt, he yelled for my attention and said while laughing, "Mom, mom, look! I'm Ho-Ho-Ho!", followed by a big grin. Here is his Santa-beard face, I guess. He looks mad, but he had just finished saying, "Ho Ho Ho!" with his lips pouted out.
Love that kid!!