Friends Visit Plus a 5K and Triathlon

To say we had a busy weekend is an understatement. From 5 pm Friday through Sunday, we had something going on pretty much at ALL times! The weekend started with a 5K (for me) and ended with a triathlon (for B), but also included some park time, a cookout and friends visiting.

Friday night started with a race! It was actually my first race since LM was born. One of the boards that B is on was hosting a 5k fundraiser (The Sunset Sprint 5k) to kick off the USA Triathlon weekend that was taking place in Cleveland. The course finished through the triathletes’ finish chute and included most of the sprint’s 5k course.

I was excited to race in my first 5k since baby #2 was born and had really no expectations. I knew it was a semi-hilly course, and my goal was just to not walk it and perhaps get under 10 min/miles (my typical not-sprinting pace these days is slower). AND I was going to be running it with Mary who is faster than I am, so I was hoping to keep up with her for maybe a half a mile or so.

I was pleasantly surprised- maybe it was the race adrenaline, but I finished with a much better time than I expected, including running the first mile in the 8s!

Saturday, we got to spend part of the day with some friends who were in town with their kids. In the morning, we started the day with a playground and park followed by lunch. That night, everyone came over to our house for a cookout. B made chicken, eggplant, green onions, and I made a salad and cookies to go along with the meal.

It was fun to see all the kids together – but wow, 7 kids in our house was a little overwhelming.

Sunday morning started EARLY – I got up at 4:30 to feed LM before getting FW ready — we were headed out to watch B compete in his first triathlon! I’m so proud of B – he didn’t have much time to train after LM was born, and all his runs and bike rides were done with a kid either in a trailer or stroller.

Some of our friends came to celebrate B at the finish line – and brought donuts!

And we got a pic of most of the kids- minus Maddie and LM.

That afternoon, the four of us took a little walk out to lunch. I don’t know how B was still moving after his race but I was happy to get in some activity.

Sunday evening usually includes dinner with B’s family, but this Sunday instead was pizza night! We enjoyed pizza from Geraci’s before taking a family walk. Two family walks in one day (plus a triathlon for B) makes me a happy camper 🙂

Some questions for you:

  • Have you ever competed in a triathlon? Which was your hardest event?
  • How often do you eat pizza?

I’m linking up with the weekly wraps.

What We’ve Been Up To Lately

I can’t believe it, but it’s been more than three weeks since our family changed dramatically and LM entered this world. The days go by faster than fast, and weeks have flown by. But we definitely have been busy! And while I’m not cleared to run yet, I’v been trying to stay active as my body heals by walking nearly every day and working to heal my diastasis recti with some simple exercises. Here’s to hoping that in 3 more weeks, I’ll be running (or more like run/walking) again!

Anyway, here are some highlights of the past few weeks.

We took LM downtown and hit up one of the Cleveland signs. We took a similar picture with FW when he was just a few weeks old!

When we’re not walking too far (and it’s not too hot), I love wearing LM for walks. 

We also made B a Father’s Day gift. Nicole came over with her little girl and we did some crafting on the porch!

Trying to entertain FW while also nursing and taking care of LM is no joke, even with B around. So, we’ve been getting creative. Like visiting the fish at the library.

And playing with all the toys there.

And hanging out on our porch!

Heck, FW even enjoyed going to the store with me. Maybe because while we were getting groceries someone gave him a free milk?

When it’s been hot, FW has loved playing with his water table. 

And, of course, goofing around with his old bff Celia. Even though they no longer go to the same daycare, we still try to get them together!

I’ve enjoyed having summery drinks – like this mojito made with mint from my sister-in-law’s garden.

And food that I didn’t really indulge in during pregnancy – like pope!

Some days I’ve had time to bake. Our CSA gave us some strawberries and rhubarb, so I made a crisp with them. 

FW even got in on the fun and helped me make some of his favorite muffins

And we’ve been introducing LM to everyone in the family when we can – she loved meeting all her cousins!

Those are some of the highlights. Hopefully in the weeks to come, I’ll have some more activity-based ones to share. Until then, keep your fingers crossed we get some sleep soon!

I’m linking up with the weekly wraps.

What Not To Say to Someone Returning from Maternity Leave

It’s been a year since I returned back from maternity leave. Yup, a little over a year ago, I was starting to figure out daycare drop off and pickups, our new routine, and how to juggle life as a now working mom.

So, now that I’ve been there – and survived – here are some tips on things NOT to say to someone returning from maternity leave:

How was your vacation?

Believe it or not, people have asked this. Or said something similar, like, “How was your time off?” While I was very grateful for my FMLA-esque time at home, it was hardly a vacation or time off. In the beginning, FW didn’t realize that he was supposed to sleep at night, so he’d be sleeping during the day and then up at night. And then when he finally did start sleeping at night, it would be for 2-4 hours at a time. Also, I was breastfeeding (and newborns eat about every 2 hours from the time they start eating), which meant that an average morning went like this:

  • 7 a.m. wake up when baby wakes up.
  • 7:15 a.m. – 7:45 a.m. feed baby.
  • 7:50 a.m. – 8:15 a.m. burp/dress/change baby.
  • 8:20 a.m. – 8:30 a.m. put in a load of laundry.
  • 8:35 a.m. – 8:50 a.m. change baby into new clothes because he spit up all over himself. Luckily, laundry just started, so I can throw the dirty onesie in there.
  • 8:50 a.m. – 8:55 a.m. think about eating breakfast … but am interrupted by hungry baby crying.
  • 9:15 a.m. – 9:45 a.m. feedbaby. Repeat cycle. Except this time baby likely has a diaper blowout. 💩

Let’s just say it wasn’t much of a vacation 🙂

How are you planning on losing the baby weight?

Yes, I was also asked this. While not directly commenting on my new mom bod, it’s NEVER appropriate to ask a coworker this.  Or comment on anyone’s body- especially someone who has just given birth.

It must be so nice to be back and with adults again!

Sometimes, yes. But most days would I like to be home, snuggling with my little baby? Yes. Adults aren’t always as cracked up as they should be.

It must be so nice to get a break from the baby!

Wait, was that you said? I couldn’t hear you – I was halfway falling asleep at my desk and also thinking about the diapers, bottles, milk, etc. that I need to buy before heading to daycare pickup, while also calculating how much longer we can have this conversation before I can figure out a polite way to excuse myself to go pump. While I may not physically be with my baby, it didn’t really feel like I was  getting a break.

a selfie a few days before returning from maternity leave

I’m tired.

When I first went back to work, my average night’s sleep was awful. Some nights, FW would be up at 9, 11, 3, 5 and nurse for 30ish (at least) minutes each time …. Meaning I got 2 hours of uninterrupted sleep at a time, if that. No, I’m not saying you’re not tired, I’m just saying I had no idea what tired meant until I had a newborn at night and then had to function as a working, professional adult during the day.

So glad you’re back – we’ve been waiting on you for [insert names of 7 projects].

While it’s nice to feel needed, it’s also nice to get back into the swing of things slowly. I’m not saying you need to give working moms a break and be easier on them, but the first few weeks I was back, were HARD. I was tired (see: aforementioned lack of sleep) during the day and it was hard for me to work on my couch at night like I often did before FW.  I had serious mom brain some days. And, weekends became much more precious – they were time I longed for to spend with my new family. So, when I had to some of the first weekends that I was back, it was hard. If you know a mom recently back from maternity leave, at least tell her how much you appreciate her being back and understand her new schedule – and priorities – may be a little different.

So what CAN you say to a mom who’s back from maternity leave? Here are 3 things I’d recommend:

  1. You look GREAT! (I don’t care if she hasn’t lost any baby weight or looks like she hasn’t slept since giving birth … we all need to hear it sometimes!)
  2. We missed you so much! It’s nice to feel the love at the office, especially when you’re missing your baby!
  3. Here’s _____ for you and your family! (where ___ = healthy dinner, gift card for dinner delivery service, diapers, a frozen dinner, etc. Basically anytime someone dropped off dinner – or diapers! – they were my new favorite people. )

Please note – I am INCREDIBLY lucky to have an amazing group of coworkers who for the most part are supportive and understanding. But not everyone is so lucky. AND note that I do not speak on behalf of all recently-returned-to-work women. All women are different. Some may enjoy talking about their post-baby bodies. Some may have felt like their time off was a vacation. So please take these as suggestions and think how you’d like to be treated as well.

Note: These random thoughts are part of the Thinking Out Loud linkup.