I strive for this verse:

"Her children arise and call her blessed; her husband also, and he praises her: "Many women do noble things, but you surpass them all." Charm is deceptive, and beauty is fleeting; but a woman who fears the Lord is to be praised." Proverbs 31:28-30

Thursday, December 9, 2010

We decided to Adopt!!!!

I am so thrilled and beyond excited to announce that we have decided to move forward through the long process of an international adoption. I know it is December now, but we will make the offical step paperwork wise about the time Frank returns home from this deployment (March/April). This gives us more time to pay off our dept completely and save a little money. However, in our hearts the process begins now! We had discussed requesting a little girl between the age of 2-4 yrs to bridge the age gap between Aliyah and Judah. This would give Aliyah a sister to play with and also young enough and close in age to Judah to also be his playmate. As of now, we are looking into a Latin America country, possibly Africa as well. We will see where the Lord leads us and the doors He opens in the end. I personally have a heart for these areas because of the poverty and overcrowded orphanages. I also think about the fact that the Latin countries are relatively easier and cheaper to travel to, thus opening doors for our whole family to revisit and do missionary work with the orphanage that we adopt our daughter from. There is so much to think about and this will be a long process as well with much anticipation. The kids are so very excited and have mentioned they think it is so cool that we will adopt from another country and love the child as their own natural sibling. It is cute though because Josiah said that he won't tease his adopted sister at first like he teases Aliyah (a nice tease) because he knows she will come from a hard life. He says he will love her and teach her English first and then he will teaser her lovingly when she understands him! Malachi said that he knows the little sister will love coming to a new family that loves her. And Aliyah said that she will help take care of her sister at night if she wakes up and cries. They are such loving children and I"m truly blessed!! As we officially begin the process I'll be posting updates along the way.

Wednesday, December 1, 2010

R & R pictures

So Frank has left and returned to Afghanistan. He is currently sitting in Kuwait and will be back in Afghanistan in a few more days. We had a great time with him and was sad to see him leave once again. He will return again sometime in either March or April. I'm hoping it will be in March :) We also celebrated Christmas while he was home by decorating the house and opening up gifts that we bought the kids. Santa will still bring the kids presents but we wanted to have some Christmas time with Frank before he left. We also went outside to a pretty park and took some new pictures. Here are a few of my favorites:

We sure had a great R & R with Frank!! We are counting down until he comes back home. For now, we will get back into our routine of school, soccer, and cubscouts!

Sunday, November 21, 2010

R & R= Rest and Relaxation

So it has been awhile once again since I have posted. Maybe one day I will find time to post more frequently about my blessed life. For now, Frank has returned home from Afghanistan for his mid tour break, known as R & R (rest and relaxation). I'm not so sure how much rest he will get during this time as we are still constantly busy daily with something involving activities with the kids. However, we are enjoying our time with him for sure! He has been home for a week now and has one more week until he leaves for the rest of his tour (4-5 more months). We had a great time spending Frank's first 2 days home at a bed and breakfast without the kids! It was so great to have time alone before being bombarded by the kids. We were home during the day and spent time with the kids though. We also managed to surprise the kids with Frank's visit since they were planning on his visit a week later. It was such a great moment to see the surprise on their faces!

Yesterday we had a great day! The older boys ran their first 5k race (3.1miles). Josiah finished in 33 minutes while Malachi finished in 38 minutes! Not bad for being 7 and 9 yrs old! We also ended up winning a turkey, a $20 giftcard to subway, a $25 giftcard for Olive Garden, and many tshirts! It was such a great feeling to run beside my son as he participated in his first race! Frank ran with Josiah while I ran with Malachi. I'm so very proud of my boys! Maybe one day in the near future they will be prepared to train and run a half marathon with me :) I'm not pressuring them at all into running just because I love to run. However, if parents are active and exercise, then chances are that the children will imitate that lifestyle as well. I am glad that my children are not lazy individuals who sit inside all day playing video games or watching tv. They have wild imaginations, are very active, and love to read! I actually despise tv and video games for the most part because I believe it encourages people to be lazy and most times leads to poor communication skills. I think such things are ok in moderation but not ok for hours on end every day. I don't allow the kids to watch tv during the week and rarely do they watch on the weekends besides the occasional movie. Well, enough of my soap box!

We have also recently celebrated 2 birthdays this month as well! Frank turned 33 yrs on the 6th and Josiah turned 9 yrs on the 19th! I just love them both so much!

Well the baby is crying now since his older brothers woke him up. Goodnight blog!

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Homemade goodness

Below are some quick, easy recipes that save tons of money and much better homemade!

Vanilla Extract--very simple.... find a fun jar, some vodka, and some vanilla beans.

Cut the vanilla beans lengthwise and scrape out all the good stuff on the inside like this picture above.

Stuff all the cut up vanilla beans (a good handful) and the stuff you scooped out and put into the fun bottle and pour vodka over it. Sit on the counter and shake it daily for the first 2 weeks or so. Then shake it once a week. You can use it in about a month but best to wait 2 months.

This picture above is after it has been sitting about 2 months. Notice how nice and dark that vanilla extract is?!

Baby Food---so simple! Cook whatever fruits or veggies you want to use.

Puree in your blender until smooth. (may need to add some water)

Put into some containers and freeze! Here we have carrots, mixed veggies, corn, blueberries, and mixed fruit :)

Croutons---Take older bread...not moldy, just slightly harder bread. Here I used 2 day old homemade bread.
Cut into sizes you want your croutons and mix with olive oil, garlic, basil, Parmesan (at least that is what I like). Layer them on a cookie sheet and put into oven at 300-3:50 degrees until golden brown. Let them cool.

Then put on your salad and enjoy!

Tuesday, September 21, 2010

Warning---cute pictures!

Judah trying to feed himself.

Josiah after playing with Judah in the air and after Judah just finished eating. As you can see, Josiah was not happy :)

The boys playing quietly with legos in their room.

Aliyah playing quietly in her room by herself.

Josiah loving on his little brother!

My sweetheart.

My funny boy!

Aliyah helping me make cookies!

Such a happy baby!

Grandma and Judah cuddling.

Judah 7 months old now, sitting like a big boy!

I LOVE his smile!!!

Judah's first bath in the tub with his big sister :)

Monday, September 20, 2010


So it has been awhile since I last blogged, partly due to just being too exhausted to type at the end of the night. We are back into the swing of things that include soccer season for the 3 older kids, cubscouts for the older boys, and homeschooling is in full force. So in the past 2 months we have had a lot going on in the Carr household. My brother, Andrew, came to visit me for 3 weeks in August. Well, actually, he came out here to try to buy a house and visiting me was second on his agenda...haha! Either way, the kids and I still enjoyed our time with him. It was great to take him to some of our favorite spots here in the springs. The kids probably annoyed him with wanting to wrestle all the time! It was cute to see it! Andrew is due to move out here in November to go to college in Denver so it will be nice to have him live so close.

Anyhow, as of recently, my mother in law now lives with us. It is a long story, a sad story, but nonetheless, she is now living with us. We love her very much and the kids find it pretty cool that their grandma lives with them. Now the timing of her moving here has worked out perfect in a time of need. A week and a half ago, Sept 10th, I took Judah in to the doctor because his throat was swollen. I expected some antibiotics and go on our way. However, the doctors found that he had an abscess of an infection near his tonsils that needed to be removed---surgically. Wow, that was an immediate scare and stress added to my shoulders. He was sent to the hospital and had surgery that night (Friday) and wasn't released from the hospital until Tuesday night. It was such a sad thing to see. After the surgery, Judah was in so much pain that his waking hours were spent screaming until he was given pain medication. Poor little boy had to take morphine a few times even. Even I couldn't calm him down, which was a first for me and very sad. So back home, mom stayed with the kids and friends were supportive and helped by bringing over meals for them. I stayed at the hospital with my sweet sick baby. I slept on a couch type bed that was smaller than my body, and I'm not that big either. It just so happened that my birthday came while I was still in the hospital with Judah. I had a friend bring over the kids and mom to visit me that day and they were all so sweet. The kids made me so many sweet cards! They also brought me some flowers and cheesecake! It was Josiah's idea to get the cheesecake because he knows I like that so much more than a regular cake. I have such sweet, thoughtful kids! Anyhow, Judah is doing much better now and back to his old self and playing and smiling! I sure missed his cute smile when he was sick.

Now that we are back into homeschooling, I've been wanting to write up a section on here describing why I homeschool and how I homeschool. I want to include our curriculum and field trips in that note. I will get around to that another night. Tonight is not that night.

Oh and I also ran another marathon recently. I ran American Discovery Marathon on Labor Day, only 15 days after running Pikes Peak Marathon. That was a bad, bad idea. I did not allow my body enough time to recover from such a treacherous race that my body hurt so much in this race. I literally walked about the last 6 miles and it even took me about 2 hours to complete that last 6 miles. Normally I can finish 6 miles in under 50 min but not in the pain I was in. I literally was thinking that labor surely was not as painful as what my body was going through that day. I hurt everywhere, no one place specifically. I hated walking and was even embarrassed to walk, yet I was very determined not to quit, even when walking was painful as well. I learned another lesson. I learned that I cannot expect to run a marathon in such a short time after running down a mountain. I am positive it is due to the impact of running down Pikes Peak that left my body without energy and in a lot of pain for that second marathon. I plan to run Pikes Peak again (as long as we still live here), thus I won't run this Discovery Trail marathon again as I need a longer time to recover. I am ok with that because, to be honest, I wasn't impressed with this marathon. I was rather very bored running the last half of it as it was boring scenery. Now, I may be crazy thinking this.....BUT....there is another trail marathon on Oct 9th, a little less than 3 weeks away that I would love to run if my body feels well rested and ready to tackle another 26.2 miles of racing. Hmm....I'll have to let you know!

I'll just post random pictures to update in the next post.

Sunday, August 22, 2010

Pikes Peak Marathon

So today I ran Pikes Peak Marathon. This is not like any other marathon and is even dubbed "America's Ultimate Marathon". I'm not sure where to begin. First off ....Elevation gain (start to summit) is 7,815' (2,382 meters); the start is at 6,300' (1,920m) and the summit is 14,115' (4,302m). The Ascent finish/Marathon turnaround is at approximately 14,050'. The Ascent (and ascent leg of the Marathon) has very few stretches which are not going uphill with the average percent grade being 11%. So basically you run up the mountain for half of the race then you turn around and run back down. For those who are not used to running on trails...you would think that running back down would be easy, yet I say it is much harder on your legs and not easy at all. So I started off feeling just fine. I felt strong running up and passed quite a few people going up with one guy telling another "grab onto that girls pig tails so she can pull you up!" I was running, they were hiking at that point.

So from the bottom to Barr Camp (about halfway point of the ascent), I'm familiar with and it is very steep but not too many big rocks. However, after leaving Barr Camp, there were huge rocks in the way everywhere. So I would get going running then have to stop to climb over these rocks. It seemed to me like there were so many of them. I was on target to summiting at the halfway point in 3 hrs 30 min until the last 2 miles. The last 2-3 miles are above treeline, meaning trees do not grow anymore because there isn't enough oxygen. So what does that tell you when you are running? Yeah, it is hard to run and breath, that pretty much sums it up. I actually tried running in many spots but it was a single track and very hard to pass. Also these last 2 miles, the fastest guys were already coming down so they had the right away meaning, those going up had to move to the side and let them pass. So a single track, people running up, people running down = very congested and a slow pace. This slowed me down a lot. I finally made it to the top in 3 hrs and 43 min! At that point I was the 18th female to the top! So I turned around and started running back down....

Running down was the booger of it all! I didn't mind running up, but running down was just treacherous. All those rocks I climbed over, well I now had to jump over and be careful not to slip on the other rocks and loose gravel. The shade also made for bad lighting so you could not see a lot of the rocks that were reaching out to try to make you trip. I had almost tripped over a dozen times. Anyhow, I felt great, my pelvis amazingly didn't hurt and it was at mile 18-19 that my body started hurting and was just plain exhausted. I have not had great training as I had a hard time finding childcare to complete long runs. I also had pain in my pelvis too. So I expected to hurt because the mileage was not prepared for. Also my legs ached because of the pounding on the way down. The last mile is back on pavement on a street and after running 25 miles on soft trail, hitting the pavement in trail running shoes was very unpleasant to my already beaten up body. This was also the point where people were standing as spectators and cheering you on. I started crying this last half mile for 2 reason. One was because I was excited to be done and two was because my body hurt and I was exhausted and wanted to walk yet refused to do so when people were watching! I finally crossed the finish line in 6 hrs 7 min (2 hr 23 min decent time). I started falling into the volunteers and was having a hard time breathing. They sat me down, feed and watered me. After resting for 10 min, I got back up and was still unbalanced and running into people. that was crazy. I took 2nd place in my age group and finished 28th female overall. This was by far the hardest physical feat I've accomplished. It was brutal, it was treacherous, it was awesome. I plan to run it again!

Things I learned:

1. I have never cramped in my legs or feet before while running. It may have been due to a lack of oxygen towards the top.

2. After delivering 4 kids naturally, my bladder just can't withstand the pounding of running downhill. Yes it is gross, yes I was wet, but I just didn't care.

3. I still hate gels, they are gross. I do like the athlete jelly beans made for endurance races. They tasted great, were easy to swallow, and could last awhile.

4. Drinking a lot of Gatorade and racing gives me the cramps and runs after the race.

5. Downhill trail running will kill the knees. Be prepared to not be able to walk up and down the stairs without pain and holding onto the walls.

6. Climbing is my strength and I still hate running downhill. It scares me.

7. Do not underestimate the mountain.

8. Proper training leads to a great finish and less pain. Maybe next time I can get that training in!

9. I love true trail running/racing. It is a great time to thank God for such awesome creation.

10. I will not look at road races as fun anymore. After this race, they will seem boring and mundane.

I'm exhausted and my knees are hurting pretty bad. I am going to bed now. I had a satisfactory race. I enjoyed the challenge both physical and mental!

My award.....2nd place women's age division 30-34 yrs

Monday, July 26, 2010

Judah 5 months old

Well my little Judah is 5 months old now and eating some solids. So far he has had infant cereal, bananas, blueberries, and green beans that I pureed. He just loves his food! It is so funny because he sucks on his fingers in between every bite :) I also forgot how solid foods changes a baby's diapers...yuck! Here he is enjoying some blueberries :)