Tufts 10k 2016

For the second year in a row I ran the Tufts 10k road race for woman. My mom, my aunt and a group of our girl friends from Vermont are making it a tradition. It’s so fun, we make it into a little girls trip, if you will. They all get a hotel room and after the race explore restaurants and around Boston. I always run, but have called it quits before the drinking and eating really gets going.

This year the weather was perfect! It actually felt a little cold and windy but once we started running it was plenty warm. Tufts 10 K 2016

The race starts at noon which is so nice ’cause you can have a relaxing morning and slowly make your way to the start.

My goal for the race was to finish. I thought if I could run around a 8:30 minute mile, and walk if it got too hard, I’d be happy.  I know that seems kind of silly but since having Emerson I really have not been able to run like I used to. I fit in some quick 3-4 mile runs, here and there, but I am not nearly in the kind of shape I typically am.

Tufts 10 K 2016

I ended up running exactly an 8 minute mile and finishing without having to walk at all. I felt good but it was super hard. I had to practice positive self talk! At mile 3, I was like, “okay, you’re half way, you can do 3 more miles!” By the end my butt and hamstrings were on fire. I pushed myself the last mile and when I crossed the finished I felt almost as fatigued as when I ran a marathon. My legs were weak and my body was exhausted.

Tufts 10 K 2016 results

Knowing I would see these two once I crossed the finish line motivated me to keep going! I mean, seriously, does it get any better than that. {maybe next year I will run with Emerson in the stroller…}

Tufts 10k

On a similar note, I was so proud of my mom today. She ran the race and finished in 1:04 averaging a 10:20 minute mile. Up until the last minute she was debating whether she should run or walk. Earlier in the summer she set out to run the race and started on a make-shift training program but then I asked her to help watch Emerson when I went back to work and totally cut into any free time she may have had to train (and she hurt her hammy too). Feeling unprepared to run, she was going to walk with my aunt. Luckily we convinced her just to try and run… see how far you can go, and then walk. Well, she ran the whole thing and finished with an amazing time!

Tufts 10k
Mom and me at the finish with our #1 cheerleader, Emerson!

Another woman in our group finished 2nd in her age group! She makes me want to train for the race next year!

And everyone else had a great time, including me. It was my first race back and it felt great to be back out pounding the pavement with so many others.

Tufts 10k - the Vermont crew

This race is so inspiring! There are so many incredible women out on the course sweating together, sharing memories together and working hard together. I look forward to doing it again next year!



Hockey, Lacrosse, and Family

This weekend was filled with sporting events and family time; my two favorite ways to spend Fall days.

My cousin, Mia, had a hockey tournament at Harvard so she stayed with us for the weekend. We shuttled her to and from her games, watched her play and on Saturday we even took advantage of having a babysitter around and went for a mommy/daddy run for the first time.

Weekend Run

Mommy Daddy Run

I thought for sure we would have a crying baby when we got home, but Mia and Emerson were happy and playing on the couch. Mia didn’t even have to use the bottle I left…granted we were only gone for a 30 minutes but it felt like forever to me!

Cousin babysitter

After our run, we brought Mia to her game and stayed to watch. Emerson loved watching the Zamboni clean the ice and she totally followed the hockey players as they skated up and down the ice during the game. Emerson has quickly started to become more aware of her toys, people and objects. I feel like it happened overnight but now she is much more aware of what is going on around her and follows things that she is interested in.

Harvard Hockey Rink

On Sunday, my sister, Lily, had a Lacrosse tournament at Harvard. It was a total coincidence that both Lily and Mia had games at Harvard but it made it very convenient to watch both of them play. The weather was absolutely perfect too. The air was crisp but the sun was shining. Emerson was bundled up warm in my dad’s arms wearing her Patagonia vest and ski hat.

Fall sporting events Emerson is going to be the #1 fan for the UNH Lacrosse team this year! Lily’s teammate and roommates taking the first of many group shots with E. UNH Lacrosse

In very exciting news, Emerson surprised us all and rolled over! I was showing my dad how strong her neck was getting and how she was starting to like tummy time and she literally just rolled right over to her back. It was incredible! We all looked at each other in shock 😳. She’s since rolled over a few more times. Always from her stomach to her back, never back to stomach. She’s starting to hit some of the bigger milestones. I can’t believe how fast it’s all happening. 

Emerson rolled over

 To top off the weekend, we celebrated my moms birthday with some crock pit pulled pork and homemade funfetti. It was delicious. 

Lofo's Birthday

One of these days I’m going to start eating well so I lose this darn baby weight!

Sleep Like A Champion

Sleep is a big topic of conversation these days. It’s usually the first question I get when someone meets Emerson. “Is she sleeping through the night? Are you getting any sleep?” The short answer is yes, she is a good sleeper and I am doing ok with getting up once (maybe twice) a night to feed her. I feel pretty rested – with the exception of the afternoon slump, but, I am not doing a whole lot else these days. The amount of time and energy I spend working out and training has significantly decreased.

Right now, it’s too much for me to get up at 5am to squeeze in a workout and when I get home at night I want to hang out with Emerson, not workout. However, that needs to change, I need exercise in my life for my own happiness and well being. I have been an athlete my whole life and not getting those endorphins is going to catch up to me…

The first step in gaining more energy to workout is getting enough sleep, which I know is hard with a baby, but it is important. Letting your body rest and recovery not only helps to give you more energy throughout the day, but it will also helps your body heal from pregnancy and delivery (and lord knows I am still working on getting my pre-baby body back!)

The nice people over at Casper sent me this cool Sleep Like A Champion graphic. It shows the benefits of getting enough sleep, and provides tips for making sure you get enough rest.  While my days of being a Division 1 athlete are gone, I feel sleep is still so important for me. If I am well rested, I am a much better mom, employee and quite frankly a happier person.

Casper Athlete Sleep

I found the impact of a lack of sleep to the athletes performance staggering. We are not all shooting hoops or football players, but if reaction time can be reduced by 300%, due to lack of sleep, that is something to look into and try to fix. Think about how that would affect you while driving a car or playing with your kid. It is worth trying to finagle a good 8-10 hours of sleep. Get a good mattress, turn off your electronic devices 30 minutes before bed, start to get ready for bed 30 minutes earlier than normal, nap when you can and take time to relax and decompress so your mind doesn’t race while laying in bed. Casper has created a sleep cool mattress that allows you to get a comfortable night’s rest while staying a cool and comfortable temperature that can also optimize your sleep quality!

I am going to try to go to bed earlier, not bring my phone to bed and maybe even read a little so I can relax. Sleep is so important as the above graphic shows, it’s worth taking the time to make it a priority.

Tell me, are you getting enough sleep?

Going back to work 

Today was my first day back to work after having Emerson. I still can’t really express or put into words how I feel about going back to work. Yes, I am happy to be back at work, with my colleagues and stimulating my mind. But I’m sad not to be at home with Emerson. 

I tried to not focus on the fact that I was going back to work and really just go with the flow. Which was nice but it made the morning a little hectic.  In hindsight I wish I’d made a list of everything I needed and prepared a little last night so that I could just grab and go in the morning. Instead I had no food for the day, I had to pack up my pump, make sure the milk is ready for my mom who is watching Emerson until she starts daycare, and put the car seat in my moms car. Come to find out I left part of my pump at home so my mom had to come and deliver it. It was kind a like leaving your lunch at home on the first day of school! Although it was a blessing in disguise because I got to see Emerson halfway through my day!

Once I was packed up, I gave Emerson a big hug, thanked my mom and got in the car. I thought I would be more sad but I was pretty stoic. It wasn’t until I walked into my office and I saw familiar faces that I lost it a little bit. Reality hit and tears welled up in my eyes. I cried, took a few deep breaths, and walked to my desk. Once there everything went pretty smooth. It was great to see so many friends and colleagues and it was nice to get back into the groove of work.

 I think I’m going to struggle with the work/life balance. It’s always been something that I have a hard time with but I’m going to have to figure it out now that I have a baby at home. At 5 o’clock I found myself just hanging out at my desk when I should’ve been packing up and walking out the door to go see my daughter. I’m just not used to that lifestyle at work. Previously I always stayed late, lingered around, and made sure all tasks were done before I left. I’m going to have to work hard to stay focused during the day, get done what I can and then leave at 5 so I can spend time with Emerson. Especially because of the commute is brutal. Our office moved while I was out and it’s in a high traffic area. So now my commute is a good hour which is terrible, it’s only 13 miles… the wasted commute time in the car is a real bummer and something I’m going to have to figure out. It will be hard with a baby who has her own schedule but I need to make sure I get as much time with her as I can while still being a good employee and working efficiently.  

Right now, working out is at the bottom of my priority list.  I need to figure out balancing work and time with Emerson and then I can try and incorporate working out. Once I get into a little bit of a grove I might try and do some work outs at home after Emerson goes to bed but I’m typically pretty tired so we will see how that goes. As for training for the half marathon at the end of October I’m just going to have to utilize weekends to get a long run in and hope that’s enough. 

Here’s to Day 2. 

Labor Day Weekend and Family Adventures 

*I have been trying to write this post all morning but Emerson refuses to take a nap. She is getting into a bad habit of only napping, in the morning, if we are out for a walk, which makes it difficult for me to get anything else done on the computer or around the house. The below picture is deceiving, although I wish that’s what she was doing right now. Instead I am voice texting this post in my WordPress App while I nurse her. #momlife

With that, I hope everyone had a Happy Labor Day Weekend and got to enjoy the long weekend.  I sure did! We had a fun weekend seeing lots of family.

My brother, Willie, flew into town for a wedding and Emerson and I picked him up at the airport. It’s so fun having Willie around, he’s so good with Emerson and so helpful and thoughtful in all aspects of our life.

Willie, Emerson and I drove up to New Hampshire on Thursday to see my parents. Vinnie stayed in Boston because he had to work but he met us in NH Friday afternoon. Willie got a full dose of life with a baby. Emerson doesn’t like the car too much so there was a lot of crying and we had some hilariously huge blowouts. I think it took 3 outfits to get from Boston to my parents house in New Hampshire!

It was so nice to spend time with my parents and see Emerson with her grandparents. They love her so much and you know she can feel it too!

While in New Hampshire, my mom, Vinnie and I took Emerson for her first hike. It was a quick and easy hike, and the view is incredible.

 Rattlesnake Mountain View Holderness NH

 Rattlesnake Mountain Holderness NH

The weather was so perfect for a hike. It felt like Fall. The cool weather was a welcome change from the hot summer we had. Although I’m not quite ready to say goodbye to summer. And the cool weather made me realize that I need to go shopping for Emerson! We have no cold weather clothes for her. Everything we have is for summer. There’s a shopping trip in her future. 😀

 Rattlesnake Mountain Holderness NH

The weather was so nice we stopped by the town beach to go for a quick swim, but the sun is starting to go down and it got a little too cold.

Squam Lake Holderness Nh

It was, however, the perfect evening for a drink at Walters Basin, which is a local restaurant, right on the water where you can watch the boats, drink some cocktails and eat some good food. It was Vinnie’s first time there and he loved it. He wanted to go back for more on Saturday!

Drinks at Walters Basin, Holderness NH

On Saturday we woke up and drove to the local pancake house, Benton’s Sugar Shack. I forgot to take a picture of the food but it was amazing, the portions were huge and it was a true rustic country experience. They Benton Family has been making maple syrup for 5 generations and you can absolutely tell. It is really good!

Maple Syrup at Bentons Sugar Shake

Across the street from the pancake house is a driving range – a total country driving range. There’s no one that works there so it’s an honor system for getting a bucket of balls.The balls are outside of the hut and there is a sign that asks you to put $7 into a locked box when you take a bucket of balls to hit. #honorsystem

Emerson took in the sights while we played!
Hitting a bucket of balls

Saturday afternoon we packed up and headed over to Vermont to see Vinnie’s parents and sister. It was so cold over there I was very unprepared. Emerson pretty much lived in this onesie and luckily I had a pair of mittens in her diaper bag.

Emerson in Vermont

We stayed pretty mellow while in Vermont. I saw my aunt and uncle and Vinnie’s great-grandmother visited and held Emerson which is always exciting.

We went for a few walk and enjoyed the fresh air.Vermont Walks

We Checked out Lake Rescue. And ate a lot of fresh veggies from the local farms.

Lake Rescue, Ludlow Vermont

Overall, the weekend was a success. Emerson, Vinnie and I hiked a mountain, hit a bucket of balls, went to 2 lakes, 3 states, saw 2 (of the 3) great-grandmothers, all of Emerson’s grandparents and made it home in one piece!

Emerson has become quite the travel in her 2.5 months of life. It seems like we go away every weekend. I enjoy watching her get to know her great-grandparents, grandparents and aunts/uncles. At times the travelling seems a bit much, but family is so important to me and I want her to have amazing relationships with our entire family!

car rides with a baby

What was the highlight of our weekend?

Quick Total Body Playmat Workout

I am so sore.

I never believed it would be so hard to find time to workout with a new born. I thought, all they do is sleep and eat, I can workout while they are sleeping. Little did I know, it is not that easy. There are so many things to do once there is a moment of silence… like take a nap yourself, finally make some real food instead of having another handful of chips or another Kind Bar, maybe do laundry, attempt to do the dishes (quietly). And once all that is done, she wakes up!

Needless to say I have been having a hard time fitting any sort of a workout in. (The two running races I have in October are going to be interesting. But I keep telling myself I have some to figure out how to train). I have gone for a few runs while family was around so they could watch Emerson. But they are few and far between.

Emerson On The Playmat

Yesterday I decided it was time to do a real workout. I went for a long walk with my Moms Walking Group and then planned on putting on a Tone It Up workout and following along. Trying to set up the video to follow turned out to be a real challenge between finding the video I wanted to do and keeping Emerson entertained so I bagged it. Instead I just started doing squats while Emerson laughed at me on the playmat. Once I started doing a little something, I kept adding more moves and trying to get my heart rate up. It felt great! I only ended up doing one round before Emerson got too fussy but I intend on doing 2 full rounds of the whole workout.

Quick Total Body Playmat Workout

The workout didn’t last long, but it felt so good and I am SORE today. Doing a little bit is better than doing nothing!

Breastfeeding + Mastitis

Once I found out I was pregnant, I did a lot of reading, listening to Podcasts and talking to Mommy friends. I quickly came to the realization that I wanted to try my hardest to exclusively breastfeed my baby, for as long as I could. But, I have to admit, it was also one of the things I was most nervous about because I had read and heard of so many moms having trouble with breastfeeding. I bought the book The Womanly Art of Breastfeeding which helped me mentally prepare for what I should expect.

Luckily, Emerson and I had a quick connection and we really have not had too many issues with nursing. Yes, I was sore for the first few days and had quite a bit of pain when my milk finally came in but that is all very normal and expected.

It wasn’t until this week (10 weeks post-partum) that I had my first real complication. {I am going to be talking about my boobs for the rest of the post so if that makes you uncomfortable, please just skip to the end!}


It started on Tuesday night, right before bed, I had some pain in my left breast; it felt like it was a little engorged but I had just fed Emerson so I didn’t think that was possible and I went to bed. At 2am I woke up with intense pain and my boob feeling incredibly full so I got up and pumped to relieve some of the pressure. It didn’t work. My boob continued to ache and felt really hot. I laid in bed googling my symptoms hoping whatever I had would not affect my milk supply so I could continue to exclusively breastfeed Emerson. In the morning, I nursed her and my breast was feeling better but my body ached liked I had done an intense workout (if only!) and I had a wicked headache.

I continued with my plan for the day and went and met up with my Moms Walking Group but felt off the whole time. On my drive home I called the doctor to speak with a Lactation Consultant to get some advice and guidance. Based on my breast pain she thought it might be a clogged milk duct and suggested I do a hot compress and massage the breast to hopefully get the milk flowing. I immediately did that when I got off the phone with the nurse. But about an hour later I came down with chills and nothing was feeling better. I took my temperature and it was at 101.4. So I called the doctor back and they had me come in to get evaluated at suspected I had mastitis. Before going to the doctors I did take 600 mg of Motrin because I was feeling so terrible and that made me feel like a new person. It was amazing.

At the doctors they took my temperature and blood pressure and evaluated my breasts. My left breast had redness but she couldn’t really find a lump or mast caused by a clogged duct. However my fever and the redness on my breast was enough for her to conclude I had mastitis, which is an infection in your breast, and she put me on antibiotics to get rid of the infection.

I was prescribed Dicloxacillin and have to take it for a full 10 days, four times a day. It is not that sweet. It leaves a bad aftertaste in my mouth but I’ll take it if it makes me feel better. I was nervous about taking the medicine while still breastfeeding but the doctor assured me it would be OK and I’m Emerson should not have any reaction.

On my way home from the doctor I picked up Vinnie early from work so he could take care of Emerson and I could rest. I really did not feel great until Friday. It was hard to be home on Thursday all day without any help but my parents came down Thursday evening which was a huge help. I was able to get a nap and rest a little. They were shocked at how hot i was to the touch and how much of a fever still lingered. I was shocked at how crappy I still felt. My boob continued to be incredibly tender even though I had been doing lots of hot compress and massage. Luckily, Emerson was such a good little girl while I was feeling sick. It was almost as if she new mom wasn’t feeling well.

Sleeping With Emerson

I didn’t start feeling better until Friday. I finally had a little bit of energy and my fever was gone it my left breast was still tender. And, I did still have a really bad headache but that didn’t seem like much compared to how I have been feeling. Saturday Vinnie and I were able to go out for a couple short walks. But then Sunday I was down for the count again. I don’t know if I pushed it too hard or if I had a little bit of a relapse but I was exhausted, felt incredibly weak, my head was pounding all day and my boob still ached. I reached out to some friends I knew who had mastitis to see if this was normal and decided if it didn’t get better by today (Monday) call back the doctor.

Luckily I woke up this morning and I’m feeling better. I was able to meet up with the moms in my walking group and I am feeling closer to normal than I have in a while. I cannot believe how much mastitis kicked my butt. But I am happy that I was able to continue to breastfeed  Emerson throughout the whole thing and because I had to nurse or pump every three hours I contributed significantly to buy milk storage due to the late night pump sessions.

Emerson Sleeping

Sorry this is so long, but I am hoping to sharing  my experience I may be able to help another new mom. I know I wished to read more stories of how moms felt, healed and cooped with Mastitis.

Have you ever had Mastitis?

What do you do when you are feeling really really sick?

Family Adventures 

Emerson has been on a tour of New England this summer. She has met almost our entire family, on both sides. We have been to Vermont, Long Island, New Hampshire, beaches, lakes, mountains and parks. Below are a few pictures from the first part of August.

family photo

My cousin Pearson married his longtime girlfriend, Lis, in a gorgeous ceremony in an amazingly beautiful location.Her dress is from BHLDN and was absolutely stunning!  Family weddings are always so fun. Lots of drinking, dancing and late night shenanigans!

family photo

My cousin Abbi’s beautiful family of 6!

Family photo at family wedding

My family cheesing hard for the camera!

After the wedding, the family spend some time down by the lake. The weather was beautiful and everyone had a great time.

family photo

My cousin Abbi loving Emerson! I aspire to be a mom to Emerson like she is to her amazing 4 children.

family photo

Abbi’s oldest son, Avery, holding Emerson for the first time.

After a really fun weekend in Vermont to celebrate my cousin Pearson’s wedding, we all headed home. Abbi came down with her daughter Izzi to spend some quality time with our grandparents before she headed home to South Carolina. It was really nice to relax and catch up with everyone.

family photo

Big family dinner at our favorite Chinese restaurant.Emerson sat through the whole thing on her Aunt Viki’s lap and loved every.

family photo

Spending quality time in Woodie and Nini’s backyard.

family photo

Cousin Izzi and Emerson bonding!

family photo

Emerson hanging out with her Great Grandmother Nini. Happy as can be.

Family photo

Izzi talking to Great Grandpa Woodie. They are having a very in-depth conversation.

Next time on Family Adventures…pictures of our trip to Long Island for a beach vacation and another family wedding.

Postpartum Return to Exercise

Yesterday I went to the doctor and finally got cleared to exercise and get back to my normal life pre-pregnancy. Obviously I plan on taking it slow and seeing how my body adjusts but I am very excited to finally be able to work out again. It’s been 8 weeks since having baby Emerson and I have quite a bit of the baby weight still to lose. I honestly did not expect it to be this hard. I have tried to lose the weight through diet but with so many visitors, summer BBQs and family events it has been hard to drop the weight. Plus on a scale from 1 to 10 my willpower is about a zero!! I find that when I am working out I am more likely to eat better. Diet and exercise go hand in hand for me to have a healthy lifestyle.

Family walk in Vermont with Emerson… now I can run!
Right now my plan is to start to go on a few runs and do some toning exercises as I adjust to being able to work up a sweat. I do have a half marathon at the end of October to train for. I signed up for it in the last weeks of my pregnancy as a way to motivate myself to get back into shape. Clearly I didn’t realize how long it takes for your body to recover after labor/delivery or how busy and time consuming having a newborn is. Even though I am cleared to work out trying to figure out when I will have time to while watching Emerson all day is something I’m still trying to figure out. I’m thinking nighttime runs once dad’s home from work and daytime toning while she’s napping. Regardless of all the logistics, I am excited to start to work out, lose some of the baby weight and hopefully be ready to run a half marathon by October. There are no more excuses!

One Month Pediatrician Appointment 

Yesterday was Baby Emerson’s one month well baby Pediatrician appointment. Emerson is growing so fast and changing every day.  I was excited to go to the doctor’s appointment to make sure Emerson was healthy, ask some questions and see how much she weighed.

  • At birth she was 6lbs 13oz and 19.25 inches — she lost 5% of her body weight in the hospital
  • At her first well baby appointment she was back up to her birth weight
  • At 2 weeks she weighed 7lbs 6oz and was 20.5 inches
  • At 1 month (and 5 days) she weighs 9lbs 1oz and is 21.5 inches

Breastfeeding has been going well and Emerson loves to eat but I had no idea if she was growing too fast or too slow. Getting the reassurance from the doc that’s doing well was huge! She is right where she’s supposed to be and growing along her growth curve.

I have a few apps I use to read about what to expect with a newborn and to learn about what issues might come up and the development milestones Emerson along the way. I prefer apps over books because everyday I get a couple short articles to read and it keeps me way more engaged. I seem to always fall asleep after reading 2 pages of a book! With all the stuff I’d read I still had a list of questions for the pediatrician. No amount of googling or app articles can answer everything plus I like everything to be confirmed by a doc.

A few of the things that I wanted to talk to the doctor about were:

  • Baby acne: Emerson has these blotchy red bumps that look like white heads on the side of her face, neck, and chest. They are also on the side of her head. They seem to come and go throughout the day. It looks similar to a rash, but the doctor said it’s just baby acne and it will eventually go away.
  • Bump behind ear: There is a small bump behind her ear that I wanted to get checked out. This, too, is normal and just the baby’s lymphnoid. I guess a lot of new moms ask about this, but it is nothing to be concerned about.
  • White spot on gums: She has a few white spots on her gums in the back of her mouth. According to my pediatrician these are just spots where her teeth are starting to form. I found this weird because I assumed her teeth would first come in in the front and then her back teeth would come in. This is true, and Emerson’s teeth are NOT starting to come in, the white spots are just where the gums are preparing for teeth, when it’s time.
  • Different color poops: Exclusively breastfeed babies are supposed to have seedy yellow poop. Apparently this is normal. And it can even be normal for babies around 1 month to not poop for a day (or even a few). This is good to know, Emerson didn’t poop for 12 hours and I got nervous!

The pediatrician was super nice and patient answering my crazy new mom questions. I left feeling calm and confident that our baby girl is healthy and doing well. Being a new mom is so fun and exciting but it can also be stressful and nerve-wrecking. There are so many things that happen every day and the baby is constantly growing and changing. While things seem to be under control it is comforting to go to the pediatrician and get the stamp of approval.

Our next appointment, Emerson gets all her shots. 🙁

*I have been trying to write this blog post since Wednesday… that should give you an idea of what my life is like as a new mom! I am loving it, but it is hard to do anything besides feed, change and care for Emerson.