Tag Archives: Birthday


Today, I am 40. How in the hell did that happen? I should start off by saying that you’ll have to excuse this little self-indulgent post. I will try and keep it short and sweet. Okay, maybe it won’t be so “sweet” but short would be good right?

Hopefully you can tell which one is me ...
Me as a kid with my neighbors … hopefully you can tell which one is me.

I have been thinking about this day for quite some time. Probably since I turned 39 and realized, “Holy freaking crap, I am leaving my thirties and entering the dreaded 40 zone?” I know it isn’t a huge deal. I mean, Vans turned 40 eons ago and he survived right? 🙂


Yet for some reason, this milestone, this marker, has brought on actual change (stay with me here). When I went from 20 to 21 I didn’t really notice a general shift in anything. Sure, yea, I could buy alcohol, whoopee! I wasn’t a huge drinker at the time so it didn’t matter (well times have changed and I do love my occasional glass of wine and a really well made margarita – don’t hate me, I have two kids damn it!).

My crazies.

When I went from 29 to 30 I was pretty down about it. I absolutely loved my twenties! I mean, I moved to California, I got my own apartment, I met Vans and I traveled to Italy with just a backpack!

Happy 20 somethings...
Happy carefree 20 somethings…

I also got laid off, went back to school, got a new degree and started a whole new-fangled life in a new profession. I also got engaged and married all within a span of 4 months (no I wasn’t pregnant) all in my twenties! It was great. And then, 30 came.

In my twenties with my best friend and love, Vans
In my twenties with my best friend and love, Vans

Turning 30 wasn’t horrible, but I didn’t notice any “significant” changes other than I felt that I had to act more grown up. Did I? Probably not. Okay, most definitely not but I did have this sense that I was supposed to. We bought a real house, had kids and did all the things 30 year olds are supposed to do I guess.

Taken 1 week before Peanut was born.
Taken 1 week before the Peanut was born and our lives drastically changed!

However, 30 I felt was mostly just counting down to (gulp) 40.

5 ish months into this "being a mom" thing - CAMPING!
5-ish months into this “being a mom” thing while CAMPING!

This last year of being 39 has been nothing short of awesome. I have had so many wonderful things happen. My baby entered kindergarten and while this only made me feel OLDER it has been quite amazing watching her grow into the little stubborn (see above – margaritas do help) person she is today. My oldest is actually more like a little adult now (again, making me feel much older – thanks kid) but it has been incredible having this little “partner” to do things with.


I also went on a road trip this year with my Wolfpack and trail sisters to Ashland, Oregon (and laughed my a$$ off). I spent a week in Tahoe with my family over Thanksgiving and have never been happier.

Snowed in at Tahoe!
Snowed in at Tahoe!

I had a stellar racing year, one I doubt I will ever duplicate. I ran my first 100k at Quicksilver. I qualified for Western States. I even placed in a few small local races and when you’re at the bottom of your age bracket that feels pretty awesome (it doesn’t matter that they were “small” races – just let me have the glory alright?!).

My cool trucker hat, wooden medal and wooden award. Very creative.
FOURmidable 50k

However, I have had what I feel is a more noticeable shift; a change or transformation if you will these last few months of my 39-dom. Do you want to know what that shift was? Essentially, I don’t care anymore! Don’t get me wrong, I CARE! Of course I care about things and about people, but I care far less about silly frivolous things we have no control over and in all honesty, I care less about what people think of ME. Not that I ever really cared THAT much (ask Vans – when it comes to appearances I have always walked to the beat of my own drum, especially in the fashion department).

Me in my 20s .. see what I mean by "fashion" - not much has changed.
Me in my 20’s .. see what I mean by “fashion” – sadly not much has changed.

Basically, I feel like turning 40 has given me a gift. Something that I consider to be very important. Forty has given me the gift of self-esteem and the gift of confidence. It wasn’t that I didn’t have these things before but I think now, it just comes easier. It is hard to articulate into words but turning 40 hasn’t been so bad.

Photo by Michael Molinski Photography
Yes, that’s Scott Jurek and ME at 39!                  Photo by Michael Molinski Photography

I know who I am now. I don’t feel like I am waiting to find out who I am going to ‘grow up’ to be because, I am there. I am her. And damn it, she rocks! Told you this was a self-indulgent post.  🙂


So I am embracing 40. I am taking it by the horns and saying “Hell yea! Let’s do this!” I am on the top of my game. I feel better than I ever have. I am healthier than ever. I have a fabulous family who is my world (on both the west and east coasts). I have friends that make me laugh, go on adventures, text or Facebook me funny things. What more could I ask for? So what if I am entering the toughest age-bracket on the trail running scene … (damn those women are FAST) but it is empowering, it is motivating and it just reinforces my “forty is effing awesome” theory.

The future is bright.
The future is bright.

So there isn’t much else to say really (I already surpassed this post being “short” – sorry). I am 40. I am effing 40 damn it (I think turning 40 means you curse a lot more too but I am not sure). So Happy Birthday to me!

Thank you to everyone who has been on this journey with me these last 40 years! Near and far, you all know who you are! You are part of the reason I am who I am today… at 40. Geez, I am 40? I think I just have to keep saying it for it to fully sink in … 404040.


Okay 40, let’s do this!

Happy Trails!


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Dearest Squeaker,

It is hard to believe that you are turning 5 years old and leaving the only “school” you have ever known. Daycare is over my dear. Welcome to Kindergarten. Welcome to life!

Kindergarten Orientation 2016
Kindergarten Orientation 2016

Besides getting taller, not much has changed with you in a year. You still wake up smiling (most of the time), eager to get dressed so long as you can pick out the clothes. You are always ready to start your day.

Even with a crown.
Even with a crown.

I love that you tried soccer, basketball and t-ball this year sometimes as the only girl on the team. Always in a tutu.


I love that despite your hesitations, you tried out for the TAZ Swim Team and now join your sister in practices, laps and laughter.

Gathering ribbons!
Gathering ribbons!

I love the sing-a-longs during our long commutes home. I will miss belting out Bon Jovi and PINK lyrics with you while dancing down the freeway each afternoon.

My partner in crime.
My partner in crime.

I love that you are eager to learn. You ask us, “How do you spell ….” probably 10 times a day at least.

I love that you get frustrated with the boys at daycare “for not listening!” Honey, that may never change. 🙂


I love when you get excited that Daddy is home and you run to the garage to help him do yard work or fix his bike.

Daddy's girl
Daddy’s girl

I love that you still adore your sister even when she is not nice to you. I also love that you call her out when she is being mean. You can push her buttons better than anyone but she is still your everything.


I love that when you grow up, you tell people that you want to be a mom. My heart grows about tens sizes every time I hear it.


I have no doubts that you will be a fantastic mom.

I love that you have such a connection with your Poppy and that you ask to talk to him all the time.


I love that your energy and laughter is infectious. Your giggles make those around you smile.


Most of all Squeaker, I love that you see life as one giant adventure. You are forever curious, forever attentive and always ready to go.


I hope you never lose that spark I see when I look at you and I know others see as well. You have something kid, something special and I know that you will go far if you follow your heart.

The first of many graduations for you.
The first of many graduations for you.

You make us proud Squeaker. You make us laugh. You make us love. You make me happy to be your mom.

Folsom Lake 1

Thank you for blessing this family with your imagination, your sense of humor and your unwavering love and kindness.


Happy Birthday Squeaker!!  We love you to the moon and back!

My heart always,


Some classic Squeaker memories …

Always trying to make us laugh - even if it meant wearing underwear on the outside of her clothes.
Always trying to make us laugh – even if it meant wearing underwear on the outside of her clothes.
Always cracking herself up. Not much has changed.
Always cracking herself up. Not much has changed.
Our always smiling girl.
Our always smiling girl.



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So here we are again, another birthday for my Peanut. Eight years old and so wise beyond her years.


My Dearest Peanut,

When you turn 8, you think you know everything. And I do mean everything. No one is as wise as you and your parents are starting to look a little less cool in front of your friends.

When you turn 8, you still like to snuggle and have quiet time with me. Note to self, I need to stop and make more time for this, no telling when you won’t need me anymore.

When you turn 8, you complain about homework and how hard it is but when push comes to shove, you can complete it in record time.

When you turn 8, you get excited about animals and want to adopt every one that you see despite the allergies you seem to have inherited (sorry kid).

When you turn 8, you will be finishing second grade and the world revolves around your friends and what will happen this summer.

When you turn 8, your sister is still as annoying as ever but you finally realize that she can also be a great person to have on your side.

When you turn 8, you love to read but only when you find books that interest you and not books that are assigned as homework.

When you turn 8, you love your Poppy more than anything and you get jealous when your sister has more time with him.

When you turn 8, you become a jokester. Making people laugh seems to be what drives you and makes you happiest.

When you turn 8, you still love tigers. You know all there is to know about them, and I kind of love that.

When you turn 8, you still eat broccoli and have even added a few veggies to the mix but you still hate all fruit and I do mean all.

When you turn 8, you think Survivor is one of the greatest shows on TV and I love how you root for the under dog.

When you turn 8, your heart is still golden and pure. You still trust and believe in everyone.

When you turn 8, you stand up for what you know is true and right. You know that love is love and I couldn’t be more proud of you for that.

My dear sweet Peanut, I hate that time flies so fast. It makes me sad that you can no longer snuggle in my lap; fitting like a perfect puzzle piece. But I do love that we can laugh together and have our little inside jokes. I love that you love going to the movies and theater as much as I do. I love that you have late night chats with your dad. And I love how your eyes sparkle when you get excited about something.

You are growing so fast and becoming your own person every single day. Your dad and I love you very much. Keep being you kid.

Forever my baby.
Forever my baby.
Forever my friend.
Forever my friend.

Love you to the moon and back kiddo!

You have my heart, always.




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Dearest Squeaker,

Happy Fourth Birthday my little firefly! I am not quite sure where another year has gone but I do know it has been one amazing adventure with you.


From the moment that you wake up in the morning you are smiley, feisty and curious. The questions that you ask and the things that you observe, blow us away.


I love that you cannot control your body when you hear music and that you mess up the lyrics to songs much the way that I do.


I love that you tell your sister that you love her daily even when she tells you to stop. You always ask where she is when she is not home and you love to be by her side wherever we go.


I love that you can go off and play by yourself always finding something to occupy your brain even if it means that you have pulled every item you own out of your closet.


I love that you are so strong and so independent. You dress yourself almost every morning being very particular about what outfit you wear.


I love that you insist that you want Rapunzel hair and even though you can barely see anything through your bangs and your hair inevitably ends up in your food.


I love that you still love to ride bikes and wear tutus  usually at the same time and that you have no fear in anything that you do.


I love that you always ask to help me with dinger (aka dinner) even though sometimes it frustrates us when you won’t eat it.


I love that on our 40+ minute commute home every day, you talk nonstop about your day, what is outside your window and what songs you want played on the radio. And yes, you can play I Spy on a freeway for the entire ride … “I spy a white car mommy!” …


I love that you tell me that when you grow up, you want to be a mommy. I think you will make the world’s greatest mommy.


I love that you wander off to your room to sit in your rocking chair and read books that you have stolen from your sister.

I love that you came home and announced that you were marrying your best friend from preschool.  Despite being many years from this reality, I can’t help but see you walking down the aisle someday as a beautiful and confident bride.


I love that you give your dad a hard time and that you give him a good dose of stubbornness to keep him on his toes.


I love that you try will anything at least once and that you strive to get better and better when you find something that you like.


I love that you go to your sister’s swim meets every weekend with barely a complaint and that you cheer for her with all your heart and soul.


I love that you love to run and that you love to ride your bike. You do it because you love it and not because you know Daddy and I do too.


Most of all Squeaker, I love the joy and laughter you bring to our family. There is not a day that goes by that I cannot imagine you in it with us. While I struggle with you getting older, I am excited to watch you grow. You have a fire within you that I cannot explain. A twinkle in your eye that never seems to dim. Even when we are so mad at you, you know just what to say to make us laugh and forget what it is that you did.


Squeaker you complete this family and we wish you nothing but the best for the year ahead. Thank you for being our spitfire kid. The kid that reminds us we can’t leave scissors laying about. The kid that reminds us that if the house is quiet, something or someone is getting messy. The kid whose kisses and hugs mean more than gold because you don’t just give those out freely, you make people work for it. As they should.


Happy 4th Birthday Squeaker!







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Today my baby girl turns SEVEN!? That’s three years short of TEN!? I know, I know, I realize that is an insane way to think, but that is how my mommy brain operates sometimes. And when she turns 10 I am sure I will say “that is three years short of thirteen!” 🙂

Our Peanut
Our Peanut

It is amazing how things can change in just a year. I read my birthday post from last year and actually laughed out loud at how MUCH things have changed. That whole “spelling words thing?” Well you can forget about that, we can’t spell squat around this kid now. She is more of a sponge than she was as a toddler!

Still, she’s our girl. Our little mermaid swimming, book reading, sarcastic little wisen-hymer. And we wouldn’t have it any other way.


Dearest Peanut ….

When you turn seven, you are excited to think that you are catching up to “the big kids” at school not realizing they too, are turning another year older.

When you turn seven, you have moments where you want to be little again but yet you relish in all the things that you are allowed to do, that your little sister cannot.

When you turn seven, you develop a level of sarcasm that at times is inappropriate and yet oddly funny.

When you turn seven, you can read. Plain and simple. (Note to self: don’t leave blog posts open on the computer.)

When you turn seven, you moan about how annoying your little sister can be but when no one is looking, I see you take her hand to cross the parking lot or I catch you reading her books in your room.

When you turn seven and you get into trouble, you immediately start talking back, fighting for your rights and defending yourself. As frustrating as that is as a parent, I applaud your emotion and ability to argue (must be a Jersey trait).

When you turn seven, you are still pure, honest and sweet. You see the world in black and white. You trust in everyone and you love unconditionally. I hope you never lose this.

When you turn seven, you become your own person. The comments and observations that I hear from teachers and other parents are often sides of you that we never get to see. You are becoming you on your own. As you should.

When you turn seven, you become self-conscious. No matter what we say to ease your fears or concerns, you have sadly started having negative thoughts about yourself. Don’t. Love yourself the way you love others.

When you turn seven, you want to wear every single color and every single pattern of clothing that you own. At the same time. Rock it kid.

When you turn seven, you start to understand the concept of time. Literally. “Just a minute” becomes a challenge, and 60 seconds later you are at my side reminding that a minute is up.

When you turn seven, you want to be a lifeguard so that you can save people.

When you turn seven, you despise your homework. Something tells me that I will be writing this same sentence for many years to come.

When you turn seven, you have your future before you but you cannot see it. You want what you want now and cannot wait. Welcome to life kid.

My dear sweet Peanut, you are my sunshine, my being and my reason for waking up every morning. Without your smile every day, life would be a dark unhappy place. You have the ability to make others laugh and you warm the hearts of everyone you meet. You are kind, you are thoughtful and your father and I love you more every day and we are so proud of the person you are becoming.

To the moon and back again, Peanut …


Mom & Dad






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