Sunday, December 26, 2010

Run Like a Mother Book Winner

I know I know…Christmas winner, yada yada…Let’s just say Santa’s elves didn’t exactly put the presents together before sticking them under our tree so somebody (read me) had to do it for them. Darn those lazy elves!

Once we got home from all the Christmas Day festivities, I was up late building a So Chic Stylin’ Salon (S to the O to the C H I C…Anybody else know that one? Guess how many times I’ve heard it. Go on. Guess. It really actually is pretty cute though. Little Miss is THRILLED).

Then this morning when Tiger Toddler was not puking on me, she was seriously attached to me. Seriously, as in a if I’m not close enough to be touching you I’m slowly, pitifully, shoulders hunched, feet shuffling over to get close enough to touch you while sobbing. Seems its her turn to deal with the funky funk that she’s pretty much been spared from over the last month. So my apologies for the delay, but this is the first free moment I’ve had to post the winner of our Run Like a Mother Giveaway.

Good news though, the fabulous authors have agreed to giveaway not one but TWO copies of their running mama’s field guide. Surprise surprise!!

And since I know I’m probably not the only one still putting together toys or cleaning up the after effects, let’s not dawddle and get to it shall we.

The randomly selected winner, who once received a used pen without even a lid from an Aunt-In-Law, is


And winner #2?  Anyone who receives on a consistent basis gifts for her “lady parts” (personal lubricant, feminine deodorant, cleansing wipes) from her mother-in-law has either got to have a tremendous sense of humor or is in desperate need of a chuckle. Either way this book is for her. So winner #2 is


Just think, now every time you get some highly inappropriate gift from your mother-in-law you can think back fondly on how it won you the greatest running moms’ book of all time. So smile and give her a big thank-you and of course, we all want to know what she got you for Christmas ;-)

And before we wrap this sucker up, I know you all want to know what my worst gift was right? So here ya go: I once got a yellow ribbon with a little red tiny glass ball on the end of it as a Christmas present. Yep, I don’t know either. It came in a really nice red box though. So weird. I used it as a bookmark. My best guess.

But anyway, congratulations ladies! Send me an email at and I’ll send you both the details.

I hope everyone had a Merry Christmas! More giveaways right around the corner…

'Til next time...

Monday, December 20, 2010

Grins & Giggles: Running Superfans

Time for a Christmas present wrapping break! Thanks to Stacie over at Impossible is Nothing, another super fabulous running mom blog that you DEFINITELY want to check out if you have not already, we’ve got a Gettin’ Right Down to the Thick of the Holidays and I Could Seriously Use a Little Laugh Right About Now If I’m Going to Get Everything Done and Not Explode First post for you (that’s the official title, but I didn’t think it would fit so I shortened it up just a tad).

The videos are each less than a minute and I picked a few of my favorites to post here, but there’s more funny stuff at so maybe on your next break give that site a little visit.

Also, be forewarned on the last video there’s a little bleepage right at the beginning. It’s only one word and it’s over quickly, but it starts with an F and ends with a you, so you might want to watch that one without the kiddos around or be prepared with a replacement word: fudge, frog, fairy, family, forgive, frolick, frock, just to offer a few so you’re not caught off guard. Or you know, make a word up. My 4 year old is always thrilled to speak in other “engliages” and if it works for her…




ALERT! ALERT! Bleeped mother of all cuss words coming in mere seconds once you click that little arrow. You have been warned. I assume no responsibility for any little ears who may or may not be paying close enough attention to pick up on the the first and last letters of the profanity to come even while they are seemingly busy at play. In other words, if your 4 year old starts saying Fbleepk. It is not my fault. Continue on at your own risk.


P.S. Wait!! Don’t go anywhere yet! Have you gotten in on my Run Like a Mother Giveaway yet? NO?! I can’t believe it. You don’t want to miss out on your chance to score a free copy of the greatest running moms book of all times do you? Go here for the details. It’s really simple to enter. Seriously. Two seconds. Go look.

P.P.S. Have something that’ll make us all grin? Send it to me at I’ll give your blog and/or website a shoutout if I post it. Family friendly please. And as you can see, mild bleepage with a forewarning will be accepted.

Friday, December 17, 2010

My Latest Greatest Trick: The 2 Book Mom Runs Tactic for keeping your kiddo IN bed

Ok here it is. The post you’ve all been waiting for. The secret ingredient. The card up my sleeve. The ace in the hole or hole in one (or whatever that sports cliche is anyway) The hot tamale of mama blog posts: how to keep that little sucker tucked in tight without a fight.

It’s genius I tell you! Pure genius. Stumbled upon by accident and perhaps a little desperation, but genius nonetheless. And yet so very very simple, you probably won’t believe this will work. But it has. Swear. And it’s even worked more than once. As a matter of fact, it’s starting to become my go to tactic, though I dare not attempt it on subsequent nights for fear she might catch on.

Arguably, the biggest obstacle for a running mom is…(drum roll please)…running. Or at least finding the time to do so anyway. For me, with Tiger Baby, age 2 (**GASP** I just realized I should probably be calling her Tiger Toddler now. Oh my word. She’s really baby no more. **SIGH** Where oh where does the time go? But I digress… where were we even? Let’s see here…”with Tiger Baby, age 2”…ahh yes) and the Little Miss, age 4 pushing 5, mostly my running is done on the treadmill at night when they’re asleep. (Why not in the morning you ask? HEY! Leave me and my pillow alone alright ;-) Ok ok…long runs are in the morning, usually, but everything else PM. I don’t know why. It just suites me.)

But nearly as challenging obstacle number 2 for a running mom (and pretty much all moms everywhere for that matter) is staying one step ahead of the game. Because just when you think you’ve got everything figured out is about the time everything is going to change. Your kid learns how to remove his or her own diaper without even removing their clothes; the wall becomes canvas of choice and poop the artistic medium; baby gates turn into tests of climbing prowess; child safety locks impressive feats of strength; couches launching pads for flight; and “slaved over a hot stove” dinner manages to hide itself in all sorts of various locations that do not include your child’s stomach.

In this house, I thought I had a firm handle on bedtime. We had a standard routine. Popsicle, bath, pj’s, brush teeth, brush hair, story, prayer, kiss, squeeze tight, don’t let the bed bugs bite. Worked like a charm, I was merrily on my way, quite frequently off to go run, by 7 or 7:30 at the latest (and yes, you read that right. The routine does generally start with a popsicle and my kiddos are in bed usually by 7:30 at the latest. Popsicle because I’m worn out by the end of the night and I’m not looking for a fight so we start the bedtime routine with a treat. Don’t worry they’re no sugar added and no artificial sweeteners. Early bedtime because my 4 year old hasn’t taken a nap since she was 2 and she’s either toast or EXTREMELY wound up by then, both of which call for sleep. And my 2 year old, who DOES still nap, she doesn’t fight it so she goes to bed then too. She likes a bit of babble time to herself at the end of a long day I do believe.)

But then, the Little Miss found my weakness. She told me one night she was afraid to be upstairs by herself. I didn’t buy it at first. I told her she was fine and headed off to do my thing. She sobbed and by sobbed I mean: Can. Only. Talk. Like. This. In. Between. Sucking. Air. And. Snorting.

Now Little Miss typically doesn’t cry to get her way. We established that pretty early on. If she even starts to go there, I just look at her and say something flatly to the effect of, “Oh are you going to cry? Because you know, if you cry you don’t get what you want. But go ahead and cry if you want. That’s up to you.” Pretty much works every time. She starts laughing instead. So this sobbing was really unlike her. She really seemed scared. Dislike.

So, I stayed with her for a little bit. She told me she just wanted me to stay upstairs. I didn’t have to be in her room or anything just upstairs. So that’s what I did that night. Annnnnnnnnnnnd she got me.

While I fully believe she WAS scared that night, now I’ve got a kid  (for the last couple months) who wants me upstairs EVERY night until she falls asleep. If she was like my husband who falls asleep before his head even hits the pillow, no problem. Unfortunately, this is rarely the case. Which basically means, I’m stuck upstairs twiddling my thumbs until she’s finally out.

Now, I know this is all just a stall tactic now. If I’m upstairs she can, peek in on me in my office (and run like h e double hockey sticks back to bed before I see her as if I can’t hear her feet) or she shout out any number of random questions to me from her room. And I’ve tried any number of ways to combat it:

I mean business: “GET TO BED!” generally accompanied by threats

I’m so weak right now: “If you stay in bed tonight, tomorrow we’ll…” insert any number of promises

I beg for divine intervention:  My prayer within her bedtime prayer goes something like this, “…and God please help us stay in bed tonight so we can have a good day at school tomorrow”

I got nothing left: I shut her door. She hates that.

The final straw:  I tie her to her bed with her socks. (NOT REALLY!!! I’m kidding. I’M KIDDING!!! Although after the 97 thousandth time she gets out, I may or may not wish she had longer socks ;-)

I give up: I just go to bed. She has no idea what to do with this so she generally just stays in her room and falls asleep. Yes, this is a pretty good strategy too, but it just blows major chunks as far as me getting a single thing done in the PM, although I do score some extra sleep so maybe I shouldn’t complain.

But THE best tactic I’ve found, with no fights, no whining, no tears, no mama being stuck upstairs is this:  (OK now this one really deserves a drum roll. If you didn’t do it earlier, please do it now….I’m waiting until you do. Really. Seriously, we could be here all night. Just do it, “dun dah dah duuuuuuun” will work if you can’t do that little tongue rolling thing or you refuse to use your fingers or your hands on a table because it’s late and you might wake someone up. Still no? Ok at least just hear it in your head. We good? Excellent. Thank-you.)

Two books and I run.

That’s it. See, I told you it was simple.

Now, here’s how you do it. Tell your little one, that you will read them one book at bedtime. Then when you finish, tell them you will read them another book when you get done running, doing the dishes, cleaning up, eating dinner or whatever it is you need to go do. BUT, you will only do this IF they stay in bed and are quiet. If they’re noisy or they keep coming out of their room, no book. Let them pick it so you know it’s one they “really really really” want to hear (or a new one would probably work really well to), then go do whatever it is you told them you were going to do.

And the best part of this? Sometimes, I come upstairs and she’s completely out and the night is mine (muh wah ha ha ha). I didn’t plan it that way, but I’ll take it. Even if she’s not asleep when I return, I’m a way happier rejuvenated mama after I’ve run and she gets a much more exciting fun story than she would have pre-run when I’m in read to get through it so I can get on with what I have to do mode.

Will this work with you’re kid? I have no idea. And I’m fully aware that like any mom strategy this one has a limited shelf life and I’ll have to find another probably more sooner than later. But for now, it’s another tool in the belt and right now it’s the best one I’ve got. So use it if you can and if you’ve got a strategy of your own that’s working, spill it mama. We’re all ears…

'Til next time...

P.S. I should also mention, the last time I did the 2 Book Tactic with the Little Miss, she seemed extra antsy so I told her what time I would come back to her room. She can’t exactly read time but she knows numbers and likes to watch the clock change. It went like this: I’ll be back a 8 dot dot 1 5. So I guess that’d be 2 Book Tactic with a Clock Option. I also use the Clock Option in the early AM when she gets up waaaaaaaaaay before any normal person (who’s not getting a run in) should and climbs into my bed. “We’ll get up for the day when the clock say 8 dot dot zero zero.” It doesn’t work as well in the morning though. I usually wind up with feet in my face.

P.P.S. DID YOU SEE IT? Best running mom book ever written, (ok maybe the only one, I’m not really sure) is up for grabs. Check out the details here.

Thursday, December 16, 2010

RLAM Giveaway bumble AND I got nothing

So I realize this post tonight was supposed to be about my latest greatest trick to keep my 4 year old actually IN her bed after I put her there for the night. And really, that is EXACTLY the post I had every intention of writing.

In fact, I had it almost completely written earlier today during Tiger Baby's nap and my 4 year old's watch a show and have a snack time (some may call this quiet time, but since my little darling is incapable of refraining from talking for more than a few seconds, quiet time simply does not exist until everyone's asleep over here...and then actually there's snoring...from every room. So yeah, I guess you can say it does not exist here period).

And what I was good ladies and gents. It was good. Well, at least I was cracking up while I was writing it anyway.  I even had another antiquated phrase nonchalantly weaved into the story, one I didn't even realize I knew until it was staring back at me on the computer screen. You’d all have loved it. I just know it.

Then, as I went back to do a little editing (which I do actually do, despite what my many made up words, misspellings and punctuation errors may suggest)…my computer randomly decided to upgrade and turn off. And POOF!! That sucker was gone. Gone like the Cheerios I give my 2 year old for breakfast about a minute after I set them on her booster seat tray (except of course for the random one she sticks up her nose. I wonder how many times exactly she's gonna have to do that and not like it before she quits putting them up there hmmm? I’m getting tired of, albeit good at, picking them out. I no longer panic.)

And so I’m crushed. CRUSHED. Forty-five minutes worth of writing just gone. My ideas completely lost. **SIGH** (Did I mention it was funny? Like chuckle, chuckle, snort funny?)  So I’ve been trying guys, really I have, for the last 1/2 hour or so to re-write what I had earlier today. The problem is I got nothing.

Zip. Zero. Zilch. Nada. I can’t even seem to unfunnily (yeah, I’m going with that word. See my problem?) write about my new bedtime strategy. It’s not really writer’s block per say, since apparently I can whip out the previous few paragraphs like ain’t nobody’s business. It’s more like writer’s depression and limited to just that one topic. Words don’t seem to want to fit together in anyway that makes even an oodle of sense on that subject. And I think I've had enough of that for tonight.

But don’t worry, I won’t leave you all hangin'. I promise. I know the desperation that can come from a kiddo who refuses to stay tucked in when you're at some of your weakest moments at the end of a loooooong day. So I almost feel morally obligated to help out and get this posted, because I think I might be on to something here. I just need to sleep and/or run on it so it's worth the read. All my good stuff comes either while I run or while I lay awake trying to convince myself to fall asleep. One more day and it'll all come together I'm sure.

In the meantime though, I did want to mention that I COMPLETELY biffed last night on that Run Like a Mother giveaway. While I love being able to give fun stuff away to my readers, part of the reason why I do is so we can find more running mamas to join the fun over here, because virtually, I'd be nothing without all your hilariously witty comments. And part of the reason why people send me stuff to giveaway is of course, so more people can find out about their goods. So usually when we do a little random drawing like we’re doing right now with RLAM, I’ll let you score extra entries for blogging about, tweeting, linking, or in some way letting people know what we’ve got going on here. The more the merrier.

However, I completely spaced it on that last night (am I allowed to blame that on the holiday hustle and bustle? If not I’m going with my 2 year old. She might be able to count to 10 in Spanish, but her English is limited so I don’t think she’ll be able to sufficiently defend herself). Now, I realize since there’s no bonus entries for spreading the word, it’ll better your odds and all if you do NOT do so, but it'd sure be a tremendous pick me up for me in light of the whole lost post episode today.

So if you can look deep within your heart this holiday season and have a little pity on this poor brain blocked blogging mama, I’d sincerely appreciate it. Besides, just think of it as that many more presents to snicker at. (Have you looked at the ones already posted yet btw? I’ve already laughed out loud twice because of your comments last night and am totally gonna have to Google some of this stuff. Face clothes???)

But if the answer is sadly no, you'd prefer not. No worries. I won’t hold it against you, at least not for too awful long ;-).

Alright it’s off to wrap presents and hope the I get bit by the writing bug tonight…

'Til next time...

Wednesday, December 15, 2010

Review & Giveaway: Run Like a Mother

Merry Christmas to you! Because yes, yes you read that right. Thanks to the fine authors of Run Like a Mother, Dimity McDowell and Sarah Bowen Shea, one of you luckies is going to get your very own copy this Christmas! Woohoo!!

Wait…What’s that you say? You’ve never heard of Run Like a Mother? **GASP** GIRL! Let me fill you in...

Run Like a Mother is a book written by and for running mothers. There. Aren’t you so glad I cleared that up? ;-) Seriously though, if you are a running mother or even just thinking about becoming a running a mother (either because you’re thinking about lacing ‘em up or throwing your hat in the motherhood ring), this book MUST be on your nightstand. Or, in my case, my kids’ bathroom. Because really, how many times can you watch your 4 year old who insists on playing until the water gets cold re-enact Rudolph the Red Nose Reindeer with her little Dora & Diego bath set (which were at one point birthday cake toppers if you’re wondering where I found that). I don’t feel comfortable leaving her unattended just yet despite the fact I’d immediately know something was wrong  if the talking ever ceased for a split second. So I read while supervising, at least sometimes.

But listen now, I feel obligated to be right up front with you. I’ve been a BIG fan of these two authors, Sarah Bowen Shea and Dimity McDowell for awhile now, sort of by accident. Pretty much every time I finished an article I really dug in Runners’ World, I’d flip back to the beginning to see who wrote it and would find it was one of those two. In fact, now, my standard operating procedure when the magazine arrives goes as follows:

1. Flip to the back page to see who the celebrity runner is (I have no idea why this fascinates me so).

2. Peruse the article titles to see if any catch my fancy (because I apparently double as a duchess, who wears frilly wrist gloves, likes tea at high noon and frequently uses antiquated phrases like “catches my fancy”).

3. Check to see if Dimity or Sarah wrote anything that I didn’t notice at first glance (because it will surely be worth the read).

4. Read the rest (and yes, sometimes in Mommyville that just means I look at all the pictures).

Simply put, in my opinion, both these ladies are fine writers. They have a way of weaving a story that keeps you engrossed from beginning to end and in between, depending on the article, you’ll find yourself giggling like a fool, nodding your head in agreement, or trying to swallow that lump in your throat and wiping that stray tear from your eye that has unexpectedly made its way down your cheek. Sometimes, they'll have you doing all three in the same story. And as someone who (sort of) writes, I have a sincere admiration for what they do. Add to that the fact that they are both running mothers, and yeah, they are tops in my book.

So I guess you can say I expected a good book out of them, and let me tell you folks, they TOTALLY delivered. Everything from the creative way the book is set up, to the ping ponging of essay authorship, the tips that you can take and run with (literally), to the personal stories they share, it’s just that good. Swear.

Looking for a little motivation? Something to get you moving on those days when the couch's call is far too enticing to resist. Well, here you go. I don’t think it’s even possible to read this book not be motivated to go run. In fact, I DARE YOU to read this book, particularly chapter 2, and then NOT run. I DARE YOU. Not. Gonna. Happen. (Unless maybe if you have purposely scheduled yourself an off and/or rest day. That doesn't count. I’m talking an I’ve lost my mojo sort of day).

But what I didn’t expect to like was all the little extras the book has in it. I’ve read books like this before, with little sections, sidebars, lists, etc. within each chapter and quite frankly, it just gets kind of annoying, at least for me. I’m so very easily distractable and can never quite figure out exactly when to read all the little extras and not interrupt the flow of the book. But here’s the thing, these are terrific! This book could have just been ALL extras pieced together and been worth the cover price plus some. One of my very favorite parts of this book are all the comments, which are really nothing less than words of wisdom, from the various running mothers (and there’s a lot of them) that the authors talked to before writing this book. And by “various running mothers” you should know I don’t just mean superstar ridiculously fast running mothers who make a career out of it, although you will find some of those included in the book as well and they are certainly worth listening too, but mostly I’m talking your everyday running mother next door (I almost said average everyday running mother, but I’m sorry. ANY mother who runs is anything BUT average. You can take that to the bank). And somehow hearing from so many other mothers trying to fit running into their already super busy, hectic life makes yours seem a little less so or at the very least a little more normal.

And I know I’m totally going on and on here about this book, but it has easily become number one on my list of running books and come to think of it…I can’t off the top of my head think of any other book I’ve enjoyed this much. Yes, I like it that much. So let’s give one to somebody eh?

We’ll make it a Christmas present. I'll randomly select one winner on Christmas Day to receive their very own copy. (Don’t worry, you don’t have to check back on Christmas Day. I know you’ve got waaaay too much to do to come take a peek at my little old blog so check on the 26th instead).  Here are the rules:

1. You must leave me a comment on this post by 11:59:59PM on December 24th, 2010 letting me know that you’ve done #2 & #3

2. You must be a follower of this blog. (See all the smiling faces in the right sidebar. That’d be where you can do that at.)

3. You must “Like” Run Like a Mother on Facebook, which you can do by clicking here.

Once you’ve left me that comment to let me know you want in and you're a blog follower and FB fan of RLAM, you will be automatically entered in the drawing. For additional entries you can do the following:

Like Secrets of a Running Mom on Facebook (1 additional entry)

Tell me the worst Christmas (or otherwise) present you’ve ever received. Why the worst? Because maybe the worst present you ever received will work out to be one of the best if it scores you this book. Plus we can all get a giggle about the major busts we've smiled and thanked somebody for through the years (2 additional entries).

So there you have it ladies and well...probably mostly just ladies! Good luck!

'Til next time...

P.S. Tomorrow on Secrets of a Running Mom: My latest greatest trick...getting my 4 year old to STAY in bed through running...MY running.

FYI:  Still have 2 more giveaways to come before the end of the year. What ever could they be? Fancy a guess love? (I'm still wearing my gloves).

Friday, December 10, 2010

Grins & Giggles: Do you hear what I hear?

Ok if this one doesn’t make you grin, I seriously have no idea what will and so therefore you should probably ignore all future Grins & Giggles posts. I just absolutely love this…

I totally needed that today. Maybe one of you did too? Hope it made you smile! Enjoy your weekend!

'Til next time...

P.S. Don't forget, if you've got something to share that'll make us laugh or smile, send it to me at It doesn't have to be running related, although, if it is that's doubley better (doubley better = even gooder btw). Special shout out/link to your blog or website if you send me something I post. Family friendly please.

Monday, December 6, 2010

Yes Virginia, there is a Nike Zoom Structure Triax+ 14

It’s a Christmas miracle! Lookie here…

NIK1347-SLPL There IS a Zoom Structure Triax+ 14!!! I just flipped open my been sitting under a mess of mail Road Runner Sports catalog and voila! The very first page was announcing their arrival. I can’t believe it. I’m in shock. I literally gasped. I’m pretty sure the page was glowing and there was a choir of angels singing. Also possibly trumpets, but I’m not totally sure on that one.

You see, I’d mistakenly believed that my time with Nike’s ZST’s had come to an end. You know, the shoe I’ve been wearing for the last, oh I don’t know, 4 YEARS. The shoe that allows me to bypass that massively humongous and slightly intimidating Great Wall of Shoes whenever I’m in need of a new pair and instead head straight over to the nearest salesperson.

“I’d like a pair of Nike Zoom Structure Triax 13 please.” 

“What color?” they generally reply.

“I do not care.” (because I so totally do not. Seriously.)

They get them. I try them on for good measure (sometimes). I pay for them and leave. Badda boom badda bing. I’m in and out in a flash before my 4 year old re-arranges the entire store and my toddler even gets out one “halp!” (help) in attempt to coax the nearest person to free her from her stroller. Zoom Structure Triax are my shoe. Period.

In all my life of running, and I’m talking waaaaaaay back when, in high school even, this has been the ONLY shoe that doesn’t cause me some sort of grief. And the thought of going back to scratch trying to find a new pair that works, and with kids in tow no less **SHUDDER**. I can’t even go there. The thought is just far too scary.

But now! Now, I don’t have to. And yes, I’m still totally going to head over to DSW to check the clearance rack to see if I can find this last model for $40 (because I’m like that and there’s nothing sweeter than finding your running shoe for more than 1/2 off. Ok well, maybe little baby giggles and cuddling with your 4 year old on the couch watching a movie with a bowl of popcorn, but I think you get my drift).

Eventually though, the +13s will be gone and it’s nice to know that once they are, the +14s are right around the corner. Insert sigh of relief here.

Merry Christmas to me!

'Til next time...


P.S. Anybody else out there have a pair of shoes and/or other running gear they swear by?

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

Grins & Giggles: I Hope This Gets To You

Short & sweet today ladies and gents. We haven't had one of these in awhile and on a super blustery, dreary, cold day like today was, at least over here, I think we could use one. I think this will make you grin a little. It did me anyway! Thanks to hubz for sharing it with me.

'Til next time...

P.S. If you've got something you think will make us all laugh or smile (family friendly please) email it to me at