t h e m a y f i l e s is foremost a family blog, chronicling everyday life. Life including natural, healthy eating (with recipes thrown in at random), home educating (with ideas popping up sporadically), an attempt to homestead on .2 acres (with very meager yields), raising 3 of 4 children with a rare genetic disorder, and lots of highly personal family triumphs and failures. You may also find an eclectic array of musings on politics, exercise, sewing, emergency preparedness, backyard chickens, and religion. This blog isn't a campaign to glorify anyone or anything. Just simply a record.


Salem Sprint Triathlon

Saturday proved to be chock-full of adventures. It began bright and early with my first ever Sprint Distance Triathlon. I have a tendency to take on the huge challenges and ignore the little ones...so I have only done Olympic Distance triathlons in the past. I LOVED this event!

Here I am inching my way into my new wetsuit. This was an adventure for me. I purchased a DeSoto T1 wet suit about 10 days ago. I had never swam in one before. It is a 2 piece wetsuit. At the tri store I a bunch on and swam in a endless pool. The DeSoto was my favorite.
On Memorial day, my neighbors and I went down to Utah Lake for an early morning swim. It was perfect. I loved my wetsuit, practiced sighting (something I never did as a swimmer in high school) and just felt great all over. I went into this swim ready to master the panic.

I am somewhere out there in the lake swimming. If you will remember I had a disturbing panic attack at the Spudman last summer. The first 2 minutes of the swim I felt the panic coming on. My wetsuit was suffocating me. The girls were just joyfully frolicking in the water...

Get Control.

Mentally I went back to my early morning swim in Utah Lake. I knew my wetsuit wasn't too tight. My body was playing tricks on me. I worked through it, keeping my head above the water in a slow controled breaststroke, and after just a couple minutes I got into a rhythm and had my best open water swim ever.

The bike felt great. My legs were a bit fatigued, from lack of training. But it felt great.

Finally the run. My body is not used to a 5k race, especially after a bike. I really wanted to be going under 7 min pace, around 6:30's but I ended up doing a 7:17 pace. I finished with a bit too much left in me. The run was over before it started for me.

Lots of room for improvement. My transitions were horrible! My wetsuit got stuck. I was just plain slow. But despite all this I ended up third in my age group and 16th overall. And actually my splits were faster or within 30 seconds of the first 2 girls, I just had slow, slow transitions. My official time was 1:22.08. I finished within 8 minutes of the first place Elite. And I had over 4 more minutes in transition time than her.

I feel confident I can shave a minute or 2 off my swim, bike and run. This was so fun I ended up signing up for another one in 3 weeks! We raced home to prepare for sixteen 4-8 year olds who would be converging on our house in hours for Ellery's birthday party. You can read about that soon!


Birthday Cake a Day Late

I am still working on a great brownie recipe. I thought I would experiment since Ellery wanted a chocolate cake. I actually made a brownie recipe. It was good...but not that delicious gooey good I am looking for.

Sunday, Callista and Emmett were out cold by 6 pm so Ellery and Brent and I did cake and candles the three of us.


Ellery's 6th Birthday

One big day.

Six big activities. For one brand new Six Year Old.

One...waking up to streamers, birthday cereal, birthday cards and unexpected presents (she got her new bike a few weeks ago...the jump rope and silly putty made her morning though).

Two...Attempting to eat one extremely large bowl of birthday cereal. She made it through two bites and then opted out.

Three...A five mile run with mom. A special treat since this rarely happens anymore with my long runs and early morning training...and oh yes, three children. We looked at wild flowers and Ellery was tickled watching the mud wrens we saw under a bridge. Goo man came along for the ride since he was awake at the crack of dawn too.
Four...A date with Dad. The event started with a trip to a "Special Park." A new park six miles away with humongous swings, ponds and climbing walls.
The date ended with a trip to Einsteins. To fill one hungry belly.
Five...A family trip to the pool. On this windy, cool day Ellery was determined to make our inaugural visit to the Scera Pool. A bit shivery but a blast. I even snuck in an 900 m swim. I figured I better get at least one in before my triathlon this Saturday.
Six...A family bike ride up the canyon on her birthday bike. Feeling very mature and brave as a six year old, Ellery insisted on taking the "mountain bike" off shoots. She was doing great until one yell from Brent. "SNAKE! Stop Ellery!" This led to at least six minutes of complete panic. Of course the snake was a stick.
We made it to Canyon View Park to see the Dam and play in the park.

We've reached six fabulous adventures...no cake and candles? The picture below explains it all...

At 6pm (how fitting) she was knocked out on the couch. After that day, that's where I felt I wanted to be too. The final hurrah for the day came when we heard Pip burst into sobs in the backyard after El had been asleep for hours...

Oops. One mistake. Off with the six birthday balloons. And away goes one little five year old girl. Now six. Ready to conquer one more year.


Something About Men and Driving

It isn't so cute when he is throwing an hysterical tantrum when he is not allowed to drive Daddy's truck to the store.

Why did we start him so young? Remember this one? The flat tire in October?

This little guy has been trouble from the start!


Will There be Streamers?

Ellery: But Mommy will there be streamers tomorrow for my birthday?

Me: I don't think so baby...we don't have any...

Hopefully the raccoons and squirrels won't eat them up, so she can come in bright an early to pink streamers galore!

ps..... I will not zoom in on the kitchen shot....the birthday cereal is an unmentionable! Sometimes it is there decision alone. The dutiful little Ellery thought long and hard as she chose between the one on our counter and "good for your body" choice. She took. Put back. Replaced. Took again. The little angel told me she chose the one she did because of the game on the back. She is so sweet. It melted my heart to see her want so bad to please me with the healthy cereal :) I made it a little easier and assured her whatever she choose would be okay for her birthday!


M yself Again

Finally today I feel normal. Actually, I feel great. No more soreness. Not tired. I didn't take it easy enough on Saturday and Sunday and I paid the price. Monday I could hardly move. My entire body ached, I was nauseous....completely non-functional. Brent came home from work at 2 pm and I went to bed. I couldn't move until the morning. 20 hours of moaning when I wasn't sleeping. Yesterday, started off okay. I took another nap. By 3 am I woke up and my body was ready for life again. In fact, I was totally rested and felt ready to attack the day. Too bad it was 3 am!

Today I am myself again. Lots of energy. Now I am just trying to get caught up on all the things I said I would do this week. I am getting there.


One More Marathon Under the Belt

Not the race I visualized for myself. In fact, in all honesty, it was extremely disappointing. I came away with a PR of 3:27, so that is a token to take away with me. I always feel like the end of races are my strong point. I can turn it on and zoom past everyone. Not so, yesterday. Here is a breakdown of the weekend.

I was still smiling in my hotel room, because I hadn't gone to bed yet. The moment I laid down, it suddenly became apparent our hotel was within yards of a railroad. So all night I listened to trains, blare their whistles and idle. Why do they blow their whistles anyway?
Out to eat at "Roosters" the night before. Callista looks so happy...but she actually had one of her most difficult days in memory. On days like Friday, I think she was sent to teach me patience.

We went for a little family bike ride Friday night. We rode the 3 miles of the river trail. Miles 22-25. It was a beautiful trail. It didn't feel beautiful while I was running.
The family waiting at the 1/2 way mark, Eden Park. Callista stayed entertained pushing Emmett and Ellery in the stroller.
I was perfectly on track for a 3:18 at the 1/2. I had an awesome cheering crowd. My little family as well as my parents.
I felt like I hadn't even exerted myself yet.
Mile 14 brought the only hill. A piece of cake. I blasted up and still felt awesome. At mile 16 I felt something strange happening to my feet. It was like I was running on rocks. Within 3 miles the pain was almost unbearable. I went from running 7:35's to 7:50's until mile 24. Thankfully at mile 23 Brent was there. He jogged with me for a moment...I said "You better not leave. I might stop." So in his street clothes he ran the last 3 miles with me.

By mile 24 my body was really shutting down. No matter how hard I pumped my arms I couldn't move faster than 9 minute miles, those last 2. It was extremely frustrating.
The last mile the finish line was in sight the whole time. It was brutal. It felt like hours. I tried to get the crowd cheering to help me along.
Apparently my sister and her whole family and my parent and children were screaming my name, cheering me on...I have no recollection.
I crossed the finish line and collapsed into the arms of the race officials and Brent. I couldn't put any weight on my feet. I began to get chilled. They took me to the medic tent. My temp was down to 95 degrees. It took about 30 minutes to finally get my temp back up to normal. I think my body must have been in shock. The same thing happens everytime after I have a baby. My temperature plummets. I start to shake. Finally I warmed up and they released me.

In the picture below, the nurses knew I was feeling better, because I was going over all my splits on my Garmin and griping about my final 6 miles. It was the proverbial 6 miles at the end. I know what that is now.
I keep second guessing my race. Should I have gone out faster? Were my shoes too old? I don't think I will run this race again. I will do Boston next year. For pleasure only. My next race for time will be St. George. But probably not until after I have another baby.

Ellery did great in the Kids Mile Run. The announcer heard us calling her name at the finish and gave her a personal cheer and accolades over the loud speaker. It was really fun and special for her.
Here we are with our "gold medals" as the girls would say.
She was so proud of herself. It was really cute.

Callista opted out. A little young still. I am so grateful to all my family for the wonderful support. I truly couldn't have done it without them.

My Mom and Dad...
My sister and her family...
My amazing husband and children... Emmett even snuggled with me for 10 minutes at the end. That in itself made it worth it!
And finally all the support of family and friends who were thinking and praying for me yesterday. Thanks! Marathons are their own beast. They bring out something in us few other experiences can. We learn things about us. My last time it was all about conquering my physical limitations. Mind over body. This time it is realizing, I do not always have control over my body. As hard as I willed it to go...my body wouldn't move faster. Both of these lessons are ones to draw upon in times of struggle. I am also thankful to my Heavenly Father. My prayers supplicated him during those difficult times as well.


Off to the Races

Me. Looking quite nervous.

Off we go. It all comes to a head. The snow, the bitter cold, the darkness, the eyelids just about frozen shut...this is what it has all been for. In 24 hours I better have 26.2 miles under my belt. I'm going for a PR. Hopefully somewhere between a 3:25 and 3:20. I hope to not have quite as much spunk at the end of this race. I want to finish with everything gone, as hard as I can go. I may not be as entertaining for the onlookers, but my family is set to cheer me on. I am so grateful to the awesome women I run with. They are amazing to put up with me, the snail. It is really a privilege to run with them.

My race strategy is still being devised. I think I will go out at about a 3:23 pace and hopefully be able to drop it down the final third. I have been through 4 sports bras, 2 hats, and 3 pairs of shorts for my running outfit. It is definitely the nerves. I am sporting a hot pink top, so I shouldn't be hard for my family to miss.

I think I will eat a banana and a slice of my bread before hand. I have 4 hammer gels. I will use at least 3. One every 6-8 miles. Take a small sip of water at all the water stops. I am not going to walk during the stations this time. Just enough to get a gulp. I have been drinking like crazy the last 3 days to get my body hydrated.

Wish me luck. I will need it, and prayers :) starting about mile 19!

BTW...my hair is looking blah. Maybe I should go blonder?


Race Jitters

I feel the nerves coming on. Little injuries seem to pop up...every piece of clothing I am planning to run in seems to rub the wrong way...my lungs feel tired...getting cranky...

26.2 miles to go.


Mothers Day

Not much can compare to being the mother of three precious little children. Only being a wife to my husband surpasses the joy I find in my children.

After hours of sewing on rosettes, the dresses finally came to fruition in time for Mothers Day. Here are a few shots....If only we had not run out of bark....it would have been a perfect backdrop!

Talk about a ray of sunshine...this little one sparkles in everything she does...and sometimes blazes :)
Thankfully our little neighbor Jeddy poked his head into our yard...the only way I got true smiles from the kids.

We spent Mothers Day up at the Full Circle Ranch with my own wonderful mother. We basked in Spring perfection with a lazy picnic under the willow tree.

Gates are such great photo ops and provide endless fun for the grandkids.

So ready for Summer...Our beautiful Ellery...

Oh and check out how the dresses compare to the ones I copied....not too bad I think. In fact, my kids make far cuter models and compensate for any shortcomings in the dresses :) Callista's retailed for $102 and Ellery's for $253. I made them for $23 a piece (and a lot of love). Not bad.