Tag Archives: Rachel

I grabbed Rachel.

30 Jul

Remember the cool grab-bag special game that my sister started? Well, I grabbed. This is what I got:

I think that's my mom's handwriting on that cake....

Who is that smooshy-gooshy adorable blob of baby? Well, friends, that is our long lost sister, Rachel. I intend to answer 2 questions in this post:  #1. Is she really lost? and #2. Is she really our sister?

First I will deal with question #2 (I’m almost always backwards…) by answering some other questions. Is Rachel biologically part of our family? No. Was she raised by our parents? No. Did she live under our roof? No. I know, I know. It’s sounding less and less like we can claim her sister-ship. Bear with me. She DOES have a sisterly title. We call her our “schwester”. No, she’s not German, either. She’s a child of the Sandhills, just as us. (There’s a connection, right?) We just coined that term while traversing Germanic countries with her. Look below. That’s us in Austria. They speak German there. Seriously.

10 points to the person who can name the movie we are portraying in this scene. GO.

We grew up with Rachel. No, not in the same house, but we LOVE that girl (and she puts up with us rather politely). We’ve vacationed with her, played with her, babysat her, taught her things (I think…), commiserated with her, hugged her, joked with her, dried her tears (at least we tried), advised her (not advisable), cheered for her, and watched her turn into someone really really awesome. Which takes me directly to question #2.

Rachel’s been lost for awhile. First that darling decided to up and leave the Midwest for seemingly greener (ivy green) pastures on the East coast. Stupid Harvard. After that whole thing was done she eeked a bit closer to us (and much closer to my sister and her schwester) by attending law school at Notre Dame.

We celebrated her Juris Doctorate with Touchdown Jesus.

At this point our dear Rachel was still lost. So lost that she wandered again to the East coast to take some giant test about Virginia’s bars. She liked what she had learned so much that she (and her two kitties) settled in for awhile. I thought we’d never again find her amongst all the culture and clamor of the DC area.

Here’s where it gets exciting. Really really exciting. I FOUND HER!!!!!!!! WHERE!??!?? Sitting unassumingly in the back pew of our beloved church this morning. (Can you think of a better place?) She’s back, friends. Here to stay? Well, we sure hope so.

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Running Away from Home

22 Jun

My sister inspires me.  Two summers ago when we were both running, biking, and dragging our families out into the fresh air she labeled it all “our new active lifestyle.”  Those words stuck with me.  They ring like a blaring alarm clock in my ear as I slog myself out the door in the morning to go for a run.  They justify my desire to buy a used tag-a-long off Craig’s List so we can go for bike rides.  They give me a proverbial high-five as I arrange a schedule with my husband so he can bike on mornings when I don’t run.

Back then we felt great, our families were learning healthy lifestyles, and goodness – she looked hot!  Then struck pregnancies #4 and babies #7, #8 and #9.  (Cue the sound of infants crying and big brothers role playing amplifiied by 279 sleepless nights and a couple dozen extra pounds.)  We wouldn’t trade these super cool kiddos for a seven-minute mile, but we are ready to exchange a half-an-hour of the daily chaos for a little pounding on the pavement.  It’s bound to restore our sanity and physique.  Right?

We both got back out there around 6 weeks ago, and yet the going hasn’t been all that easy, especially for my sister, who is, mind you, only 3 months postpartum. Notice, I waited until the twins were a good 8 months old before attempting to raise my heart rate in ways other than lugging 35 lbs. 13 oz. of baby.  Six-week doctor’s okay?  Um, not okay.

To give us a little jump-start challenge I looked for a race we could run while we were together this summer.  I couldn’t find anything, nor were either of us really up for racing with other people.  So, we had settled on just running together nearish our parents’ house.  I started mapping out some possible routes and the first one I put in came up as exactly 3.1 miles.  Well, that got me thinking.  We simply needed to do our own 5K.  It needed to be a surprise.  And it needed to be awesome.

I’ve been reading Run Like a Mother and couldn’t help but be excited about the great sisterhood of running, so I started by giving her my copy of the book.

I let her know that we would be running the Monday morning after the big family reunion, but I didn’t let her know any of the other details.  I made us matching shirts.

Hey! I know! We should run 3.1 miles!

The shirts came with matching headbands, but we decided not to rock those.  We prefer to get our headaches from boyish antics rather than cotton/spandex blends.

I made our children matching shirts.

They say, "My Mom Ran Away from Home"

I made our husbands matching shirts.

When we invited our dear friend Rachel along on the run I made her a matching shirt.

The plan was to run on the Cowboy Trail starting at our parents’ turn-off and going into town where we would end at the hospital.  It seemed iconic, if not necessary.  The trail used to be railroad tracks, but now it’s just a great place for walking, jogging, biking, oh, and riding horses.

But absolutely, under no circumstances is it for cows.

After determining they didn’t actually mean us, we set off.

We’ll spare you the nitty-gritty details of the walk run.  No statistics to report here, except that we each came in first for our age division.  That’s right, please feel free to take a moment to clap for us in your own locale and time.

Our boys sped out to meet us and then helped us sprint to the finish line.

Our families cheered us on, gave us water and provided one last detail that was a surprise even to me.

Emergency transport to the hospital.  Which was handy, since my mapping skills failed me, and the ER was a good .25 of a mile further than the end of our race.  Nicely played, Mom, nicely played.

But don’t think you’ve had the last laugh, because next year you might be on the Surprise Race Circuit.