Thursday, November 27, 2008

Thanks

Our little Turkey

The rest of the year seems to quickly disappear from here out. May be that's why we have Thanksgiving now. The rest of the year is a flash and you really don't remember it all. Outside of Janet getting a migraine our thanksgiving was wonderfully peaceful. Dinner at mom and dads and I must say everything was perfect. We even got to play some 500 after dinner.Cousin Adison and Armand

Adison and Bijou in their tent.

I have a bad habit of getting myself into big projects when I am not training. Since it is my off season I started looking at moving my utility room into the side of the garage. It took me a couple of months of thinking to figure it out and came up with a plan and dove in. Once again, way more work than I imagined but it is almost done. We are hosting our Prest Christmas party this year and we are super excited about it. This "little project" should help to make our space more comfortable. The old utility room is now a "mud room" off the garage complete with built in lockers for us and kids. Bijou has been a great help with the framing, sheet rocking, tile and paint work. Just one more weekend to get things ready.
Time for work daddy!

This last week I had my first meeting of the upcoming season for TNT. This year I have committed to being a "team captain." My role will be to support our coaches (mike and bob) in any way possible. We will be training for the local Lifetime Tri and also the Pacific Crest half Iron distance Tri in Oregon. The goal is for us to prepare and encourage everyone who joins to have the best season possible. It is an amaizing, life changing thing for everyone. Epically the families we will support that are dealing with cancer. It means something different for everyone but the important thing is that we are making a difference is the fight against cancer. I hope some of you out there would consider joining me this year for a race, I promise it will be one of the greatest experiences of your life. It is amaizing what a small group of committed people can do! Be a life changer!

Last years season was great. I look back at all the work I put in and get excited to start back into training this weekend. Finding a balance of time with the family and time training was better this year. I look forward to getting better at that every year. Bijou joins me for many runs in the running stroller and I look forward to sharing that with Armand. I always do the "horse farm" loop when I run with Bijou. She love to see all the horses as we go by. I feel very fortunate that she loves to go with me.

This year I feel older. That is a big statement. I feel more fit that any time in my life, and I love all the experiences that life has taught me. It is just interesting that I am now at a point that even college age seems so far away. The shows I used to watch are now on the classics, and I like all the music on the "oldies" station. I am no longer in between. There are wrinkles on my face that I have never noticed before and my hair line continues to retreat into the "back forty." None of this is a compliant. I love where I am in life. It feels much more complete and full. It is so fun to share so much with the woman I love and two beautiful children. What a challenge it is to be a good parent. It is so exciting! Everything is so new every day. Today Bijou had her first "potty" on little toilet. I never thought peeing could be so exciting. What a joy to see her learn and grow. It really is going so fast. So fun to have a little boy right on her heels about to learn it all too. What a great pair they are.

So much more to share but I thought I would burn the rest of my time on the computer putting up pictures. They are much more interesting than my blabber.

Sunday, November 9, 2008

And So It Goes

Looking back on the past year is surreal. It seems so long ago. Finishing my first TNT race, doing my first Olimpic distance Tri. Going strait into two other races, a century ride and my first marathon. All things that I could not have done on my own. It is curious for me to look back and see what I am doing with my time now. I honestly don't know how I did all that last year. Honestly it was the thoughtful letters and support that all you gave, to keep me going. Granted I did get an ulcer, but is was an amaizing time. Loosing McKenna, our honored team mate for the TNT marathon was reason to keep going. Tragedy happens every day. It is so important to find ways to help in the fight. To ease one anothers pain. To love others more than yourself. I am so excited to race again for TNT next season, I wish so badly I was doing it right now.

One year ago Bijou was just starting to stand. We knew we were going to be expecting another and I was filling time in at the store to relieve pressure off dad and mom. Dad has just gotten out of the hospital due to a heart/stress scare.
Bijou is double her size and her learning ability is amaizing. Running, jumping, learning how to sing and copping everything we say. An absolute joy! Armand is an amaizing little boy. Following in his sisters steps as a happy little baby popping teeth early and talking like crazy. I have not filled in at the store yet this year but that may come yet. I hope dad is doing more to manage his stress better.?
The experience I gained last year with my TNT races gave me great confidence and results this past season. Five Triathlons, one half marathon and a few other running races. A fantastic season with fantastic friends.

So what am I doing now? I am really enjoying being a husband and a father. Your perspective really changes when you loose people you love so young. The simple things seem much more important, and life's problems seem less important. I have found that you can only do so much, and that the things that are out of your control should be left alone. Do what you do well and pray for those thing that are out of your control. Life is so precious. Every moment every day. Like it or not it is your choice. Enjoy the things that go your way and love the thing that don't. The alternative is much less appealing. Nothing good comes from negativity and that is no good for those around you. Don't get me wrong, I fail at these thing often but it is rewarding when you can find consistency in the good and bad.

I looked back to my post this time last year and found this. I wish I could say that I had something better to say but I still reflect my thoughts then.

I want so badly to pray with Dan Roelofs but he is gone. I want so badly to go back to Woodland Fellowship and be washed away by the worship and feel the genuine concern of my brothers and sisters, but that is gone. I want so badly to walk over to my brothers garage and hang out with him and the boys, but he is gone and the feeling is not the same. I want so badly for there to be honesty among adults and a desire to seek the truth, to lift one another up and grow as we have been commanded to do. To love one another as we have been loved.

I know my pain is not new, just new to me, and is nothing compared to what so many others have faced. I know that my Father hold my heart and I can feel comfort in my times of hurt. I see so many blessing in my life that He has orchestrated on my behalf, to be able to handle this chapter of my life.

Janet and I have found a church home in The Church of the Open Door in Maple Grove. We do not attend all that regularly but each time we do we are bathed by the worship and encouraged and inspired and challenged by the messages. We could not ask for more there. A great answer to prayer. I continue to be amazed how much longer projects around the house take without Adam. It's not just the time factor, it feels lonely at times too. But that is just something to get used to. I don't think I ever will. It has been so exciting when Adison is able to come over and "help out." What a sharp kid. Just a monster too. Although there continues to be realtionships that are still broken since Adams passing, I know those things are out of my controll. And even though those things make the pain of Adams loss real and personal, I cannot be kept down because of all the wonderful realtionships that we have been blessed with. My parents, alouthouth imperfect, always make an effort to be strong and supportive. We are in it together and we know we will make it together. My sister is busy in her final year of college and doing a fantastic job. It is exciting to see her on the cusp of entering the "real world." So much good ahead of her. I cannot say enough about my best friend Erek Swenson and his family. How supportive he is in every way possible. Great friendships are ones that work in and through anything, and give you confidence along the way. So many other friendships in my life bless me in the same way. So many to list, you know who your are. Thank you, I pray that I am giving back at least half of what you all give to me.

Reflecting on two year of life without my dear brother is odd. My dreams of him are so real it is wierd waking up. Life without him is just that, wierd. I have asked myself if all my crazy training and fundraising for TNT is just a cover for the pain of loosing him. For a short time last year may be.? But I can confidently say that TNT is exactly what I would and should be doing. I will continue to race (one at a time though) for a cause that gives hope and encouragement to those that are forced to deal with cancer. I really look forward to being a mentor next year for the Lifetime Fittness Tri for TNT. I will continue to live in a way that puts my wife and my children first. I pray that I will have to courage to follow God in the path that He has for us.

Life is a blessing.