At Long Last

Wow, so much has happened since the last time I posted on the blog. Sorry to have seemingly dropped off the face of the earth! I haven’t had much free time for writing these past few months, so this post will just be an overview of what we’ve been up to, and I promise I will make more of an effort with regular posts in the future… that is, if there is anyone still interested in our adventures!

My little Nolan’s fourth birthday was the first big event during the lapse. We had a quiet family celebration with a grain-free banana chocolate chip cake that Nolan made short work of, and since his birthday fell on a hippotherapy day, he got to go horseback riding too. 🙂 The real present, however, was Jeremy being able to come to Colorado that week. The University of Colorado Colorado Springs flew him out for a job interview, and the timing happened to work out perfectly, so we considered ourselves very fortunate.

Jeremy accepted the UCCS job offer at the beginning of April, and that is where the real whirlwind started. I flew out to Oregon near the beginning of April and spent a week renovating our house’s bathroom, doing yardwork, and getting a start on the packing. I then flew back to Colorado to run my first half-marathon and help shuttle Nolan around to a series of medical tests at Children’s Hospital while he was still assured of Medicaid coverage.

Jeremy valiantly packed most of our furniture and a ton of boxes into two ReloCubes without any assistance at all, but since he only had a month between accepting the job offer and getting everything moved out to Colorado Springs—himself included—I ended up flying back to Oregon one more time at the end of April for the final push. We ended up donating a good half of our furniture to the Habitat for Humanity ReStore, plus tons of smaller household items to Value Village and pantry items to the food bank; shipping more than we would have liked through FedEx; recycling everything we could; and taking a few truckloads to the dump for the remainder (thank God for my Aunt Marty, who brought the truck and helped us out in the last two days!). Incredible how much stuff you can accumulate in a house over 10 years! Once the house was empty, I did as much cleaning as I could, including a new poly finish on the hardwood floor, and Jeremy took care of some painting and other handiwork.

In the end, after over a week of putting in hard labor for 16+ hours a day and no place to sit but an air mattress on the floor, we were able to get the house cleared out and the car filled up. Two long days of driving, and we finally made it to Jeremy’s apartment in Colorado Springs, just in time for the ReloCubes to arrive with all our furniture the first week of May. Fortunately, unpacking always seems to go so much quicker than packing! He started his new job at UCCS just days later on May 7th, and although Nolan and I are still living up in Littleton for school and therapy, we could not be more thrilled to have Daddy just one hour’s drive away instead of 23!

We had one more spot of anxiety and excitement at the end of June with the Waldo Canyon Fire. Jeremy’s apartment is west of I-25 near Garden of the Gods, and was less than 3 miles from the fire’s perimeter on the day it destroyed so many homes. He evacuated that day with the dog and we sat watching the news and hitting reload on the Colorado Springs Gazette webpage all day for updates, but thankfully the weather began to cooperate after that point and the firefighters were able to start making headway on containment. What a crazy year—from flooding in Salem to drought and wildfires in Colorado in the space of six months!

In the midst of these major events, I’ve done my best to keep exercising, and have lost 20 pounds in the first six months since I started jogging. I’ve already mentioned the half-marathon I ran: the Platte River Half on a drizzly April 15, in which I successfully finished with a solid time of 2 hours 36 minutes and an unfortunately sharp pain in my left soleus.

The next step was supposed to be finishing training for the Colfax Marathon on May 20, but my calf pain was severe enough that I worked with a physical therapist for myofascial release (this around all the packing and moving and unpacking) and then had to take about a month off of running. That meant the marathon was out, but I started running again when everything settled back down in June, and had a great time at the Father’s Day 4K with my dad in Boulder, miraculously winning my division and earning a free pair of OluKai sandals!

I also got a free entry to the Naked Foot 5K in Clement Park in July, and took the opportunity to try my hand (or rather, foot!) at racing barefoot. About the first half of the course was on concrete, which gave me some plantar pain and several pre-blisters on my toes, but it just made the soft wet grass in the home stretch feel that much better! I was nearly able to match my PR from January, but more importantly, I tried something that I never would have thought to do as a child or even as a young adult—most of the time, I don’t even walk in grass barefoot! So it was fun to try at least once.

Most recently, I talked Jeremy into trying his hand at racing and signed us up for the I Run Colorado 5K on August 5th at Wash Park. His legs were hurting a bit because of an old pair of shoes, but we stuck together for almost the whole race and both finished under 35 minutes; my new 5K PR is 34:16! I’m now training for the Summit Assault 5M ascent at Granby in mid-September with weekly trail runs and kettlebell sessions, and will be capping off the season with the Bear Chase trail half-marathon a few weeks later.

Of course, this is a foodblog, and right about now you are probably wondering if I am even going to mention food. We kept Nolan on the GFCF diet through June, but were unable to determine any real benefit to his health and behavior from the removal of gluten, so I have slowly started reintroducing it to his diet, concentrating on ancient grains like einkorn and spelt, as well as soaked, sprouted or soured wheat to aid digestion. I still give him some gluten-free and grain-free foods for the same reason, and we have continued with the casein-free part of the diet.

It is all very much a work in progress, and over the course of this past year, it has become more and more clear that holistic nutrition has become a passion for me, not only for Nolan’s sake, but for my own and that of all of our family and friends. Because of this, I have enrolled at the Nutrition Therapy Institute in Denver for the upcoming fall term, beginning my certification as a master nutrition therapist over the next few years. As full as my schedule will be, I very much look forward to sharing some of my explorations here on the blog!


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