Monday, June 29, 2009

Wonder

I love taking time out as a family, to rest and breathe and wonder. We had a family picnic on Friday night. It was lovely. :)












Sunday, June 28, 2009

Little fishies

We are loving the pool this year!










Sister Love

I love this picture.



Monday, June 22, 2009

Seven Years




Lovers don't finally meet somewhere,
they're in each other all along.

-Rumi
Happy Anniversary, my Forever Love. :)

Happy Father's Day :)



Happy Father's Day to everyone!

But especially to the three dads I love most in the world:
This one:



and this one:

and most of all, this one:



Monday, June 15, 2009

Frustrated

I'm discouraged.

I've been working so hard on running. I've been giving so much energy to it. (And yes, soon I'll let you all know why it is that I'm trying so hard to train...but not today.)

And it seems that every time I come to a new point, or cross a new threshold, I fall back again due to some frustrating injury or weakness that I have.

I've been struggling with weaknesses both physical and mental. This week, it has been both.

Something in my head tells me I can't keep going, and that I can't possibly make it past that fence or that tree or that bend in the trail. And it's only compounded by the pain in my body that I keep fighting against. I correct one thing, and hurt something else. It's really been a grueling process for me.

On Saturday, I was running on a trail that I frequent. Though I had my motivating music in my ears and beautiful scenery in my eyes, I just struggled. I was tired and I was hurting. I was so frustrated at myself for getting hurt again. I was angry at the mental and physical weaknesses that were keeping me from my goal.

A little more than half-way through my planned run, I just stopped. I felt so down, and like I just couldn't keep going.

It was a perfect deciding place. From there, I looked down. I could easily go back to the van and just go home. To my left, the long, easier, downhill run. To my right, a very steep run upward to my favorite place around here.

I thought for a while about what to do. I just wanted to go home.

But I decided not to quit.

So then I glanced off to my left. That would certainly be easier...it's a downhill run for a good kilometer and a half. Lots of people were on that trail. It would be so easy to follow them and take the easy road down.

Then I looked to my right. It was steep and daunting. It did not look fun at all. But I knew what awaited me up there if I could just make it.

So I began a slow, painful run upward. There were times it couldn't be considered a run. But it was a constant movement upward.

Finally, after several painful minutes, I arrived.

At the top, there is a beautiful compass rose inlaid in the ground, and this, all around:




I stood in the middle of that compass, and looked around me at the beauty. I was alone in the quiet. It was a triumphant moment. It had not been easy, but I had made it up there again.

As I stood there on that compass, I thought about my life and the direction it is going. I thought about them:
I thought a lot, and just reveled in the joy at having overcome my weaknesses in that moment so that I could go further upward.

In our lives, it is so easy to fall back and to do things that end up hurting us. It is all too easy, even when we have motivation and love all around us. We are still human, and we still have weaknesses. In the end, it comes down to our choices.

We can quit trying and give in to the pain and weakness.

We can follow the easy path downward with everyone else.

Or, we can climb the arduous, lonely road upward.

Why climb up? Why keep trying if it's so hard?

Because when we advance, progress, and overcome our weaknesses, more joy and beauty awaits us up farther than we could have ever imagined when we were down below.

It's worth the price. It's worth the climb.

Keep trying, even if you feel like you've made mistakes. Keep going, even if you feel too weak or too hurt inside by the choices you or others have made.

Keep choosing to go up.

It's worth it.

I am teething, hear me...

...roooooooooaaar!!!


Just kidding. Although she is teething, these are a couple of pictures of her shirt stuck on her head. :) What a cutie. :)

Friday, June 12, 2009

Incredible

Have I said lately how amazing it is to have daughters?










It is.


Passing notes in class

My oldest handed me this note today during school. I just wish she'd be a little more clear about what it is she wants, that's all. :)

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Left behind: Lots of tears

These guys are so together that they don't seem to leave things behind when they visit, like I always do, but I will tell you, they left behind lots of tears and loving hearts who miss them.

We had a wonderful visit from our Richmond parents this weekend. It was just incredible to be together with them again.

Pretending to be bumblebees with Grandma:



Licking the pollen out of the flowers:


We also got to meet some more of our wonderful family, who Dad hadn't seen in a very long time, and who Matt and I had never met, cousins Kent and Elizabeth, and their son, TJ.

Dad and Kent talking genealogy:

Me preaching to the choir about homeschooling:

I think our girls would be just thrilled if they could marry one of these guys. Too bad they're both related. :)



Mom sporting her really cute new look:


Grandpa, who can get any tooth through:
(Oh, please come back! These teeth are miserable!!)


What can I say? We love and miss you terribly! Thank you so much for coming!

Saturday, June 6, 2009

Dreaming

I've thought a lot about things I would love to express to my girls lately.

Thoughts about dreams and desires, reaching and stretching and growing.

I find myself once again reaching for things and working for dreams that I never would have imagined possible before.

It is never easy.

But I want my girls to understand that dreams are worth having. They're possible. And they're worth the tremendous effort they take to achieve.

And then I realize that I really don't have to say much at all. I try to include them in my own dreams, and let them see their mother struggling through the pain and joy of achieving dreams. I let them dream, and I let them see it can be a reality.

I love you, girls. Dream and work and pray. :)



(These pictures taken on location at the filming of my new yoga video, soon to be released: "Yoga for Runners." Stay tuned. :) Thank you to my Loving Matt and girls for their support and patience with my dreams.)