Letting this go.

This is the hardest post for me to write.
But it’s time.

It’s time to let this go. 

The ‘this’ would be my blog, my little corner of the Internet that I’ve proudly fed and watered for the past 3+ years. The home I’ve grown very fond of and feel totally indebted to for all that it’s taught me.

Yet, this weekend — the weekend of the much-needed reset — and I had a bit of a breakthrough. It happened while running with Scott along the camp road in Maine.

Something’s gotta give. I am go-go-go all the time, and to a fault at this point. I need to find a better balance — and yes, I realize balance means that not everything in life will be perfectly balanced every single day — but right now? I’m juggling, and half the balls are dropping. That’s not exactly balance in my book.

And the biggest ball dropped? The presence ball.

It hit me hard this weekend. All those nasty habits I thought I did a pretty good job of kicking during the #presence2013 project came back to rear their ugly heads in the past few weeks. And it’s an ugly place to be, honestly. Too connected. Too distracted. Too distant. 

So I made a decision this weekend. Blogging is the ‘thing’ that I need to juggle least in my life right now. As sad as I am to say good-bye to this home of mine, I am almost equally relieved and curious to know what’s around the bend in my path with this ball ‘dropped’ for good.

So this is me — saying ‘see ya later’ (and not good-bye). And thank you.

Because sometimes, letting go is the only thing left to do. xo

let go

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26.2 — in moments, snippets and pictures

#teamsutera has taken it’s sweet time in processing all that was marathon weekend in Chicago, huh?
…I guess that’s because we’re both kind of still in awe, still sorting through what those 26.2 miles meant to each of us. It meant a helluva a lot, I’ll tell you that. 😉

So today, we’re co-writing this post to share some of our favorite moments from that weekend — in moments, snippets and pictures (in no particular order)

Walking forward in our corral, slowing marching towards that starting line. We were corral “K.” There was someone upfront carrying a big sign with the letter “K” emblazoned on the front of it. Every time it moved. We moved. That is, until we were thisclose to the starting line. The moment we saw that “K” drift to the side of the road instead of directly in front of us? Awe-inspiring. Stomach-dropping. It was go-time. And we knew it. 

Setting out our race gear the night prior — this was the wifey’s job. Pinning our bibs on the front of our shirts, setting out our sneakers – putting the d-tags on our sneakers (the hubs job, way too technical for the wifey), laying out our socks, throaway tops and shorts. We both wore the same exact outfit we wore for every single long run. Shorts and a tank for the wifey; shorts and a t-shirt for the hubs. In Scott’s eyes, we’d ‘hurt their feelings’ if we left them behind since ‘they’ (meaning our long run attire) would be offended if we didn’t take them out on race day. <—he’s so cute 😉

Running along around somewhere around the midway point in the race — we passed a retirement home…the smiles and waves from the windows was heart-warming. As our eyes gazed up from the second floor to the third floor and beyond, we caught the smiles of more faces in the window…all smiling, joyful, perfectly content watching the runners whiz by. I remember distinctly thinking man, I am so able, I need to enjoy this more. 

Reaching the top of the first incline and setting our sights on the road ahead — everywhere we looked there were runners. Filling the streets from side to side, front to back. It was awesome. 

Rounding the corner around mile 7 and seeing a blog reader — Nikki! — with a bright #teamsutera sign and the BIGGEST smile and loudest, most energizing cheers ever. Her energy was contagious and made me giggle…we both pumped our arms into the air and cheered right back at her. I loooved that moment. (you’re the best, Nikki!!)

Practically jumping out of my skin with excitement as we entered the marathon expo — talk about the one trade show floor that I’ve always wanted to walk but never had a chance to (I’m more used to high-tech trade shows with lots of techy geeks everywhere you look). I’m pretty sure we’ll have to take a second mortgage out on the house after the amount of cash we dropped at the expo. I just couldn’t contain myself. At. All. 

There was Elvis. Drag queens. The Queen of England. And I’m pretty sure around every single bend there was at least one group of spectators playing “Gangnam Style” — a song we just so happened to have talked about more than a few times during dinner the night prior. Random, much? 

Hitting a big-time mental block around mile 17. Trying to take some fuel but even that wasn’t helping matters. I was toast. It was too soon for that. Way too soon. I was ready to cry. We rounded the bend and Scott saw them first — it was my mom and her boyfriend Mark. They were RIGHT where we needed them to be. I don’t even remember what Mark said but it was something very motivating I remember that much (lol). And my mom? Well she was too busy trying to get the best possible shot to say much other than a yell of support. (she told me after that she probably took a picture of 100 different runners all who rounded that bend before us…she was so afraid to miss the shot that she just kept snapping pics. so cute.)

Miiiiiike Ditka. ‘nuf said.

Feeling inspired around every corner. First – we saw a blind runner with his guide running right beside him. I mean, how awesome is that? And then we saw an amputee runner who was most certainly running much faster than us…I have to believe he was propelled purely by joy that he was able to run at all. I know that’s exactly how I’d feel. I tried to pick up my pace after that. 

Around mile 20 or 21, when all I wanted to do was to stop moving, sit down and cry. I looked over at Scott, saw the pained expression on his face and heard him say “stay right by my hip, I’ll bring you home.” And I wanted to cry both out of relief that he was with me, as he always is, but also out of sheer adoration that no matter how much he was hurting, he would push that down as hard as he could to keep me going. That’s love. ❤

Thinking about all of our friends, family, and #runsherpas who were receiving constant updates via text every time we crossed one of the timer mats. Every time I stomped over one I thought about them. It made my heart smile to think about them grabbing their phones to see what the text would tell them. Little did I know that many of them were also following along to my sister Jo’s constant tweets and Facebook messages. I spent a good two hours laying on the bed in the hotel room after the marathon reading and re-reading them all. Often crying through my responses because it meant so much to me. So, so, so much. (annnd I’m crying again while blogging, this is becoming quite the regular occurrence up in here). I was in awe when I searched #teamsutera in twitter and saw the giant stream of tweets. Seriously, unreal. 

Mile marker 25. Yayyyy. Mile marker 25.2? Slap in the face. C’mon really?? That and all the “one more mile” chants we heard were infuriating when we were well into that last mile. We kept yelling “we have less than that!!” clearly perturbed that the spectators were *so* wrong in their distance estimations. 

Mile marker 26? Scott doesn’t remember much here. But I do. I turned that corner and started bawling (sensing a trend here??). It was just too much to bear. We were thisclose to our goal. 18 weeks of work. Rounding that bend and seeing the finish line? It felt like a freakin’ dream. We fought so hard to get there and suddenly it was upon us. We grabbed hands and crossed that finish line with arms held high, and a quick kiss at the end. I wish I could’ve frozen that moment in time. I don’t think I fully lived it in that moment. I was in too much pain, for one. 😉

Jo and M — our ‘onsite #teamsutera #runsherpas. Neither of us have the proper words to explain just how grateful we are to both of them. They were there every time we needed them. When we first woke up, a bundle of nerves: they were there. When we walked the mile to Grant Park from our hotel, still nervous: they were there. When we parted ways at the start line, they were there…with hugs for both of us. When we (or at least I) started to feel tired at mile 8 (way too soon), they were there: so happy to catch us whizzing by. At mile 17 after we saw mom and Mark and were so elated by that boost of energy, they were there too…about a quarter mile down the road. And at the finish line, they were in the stands, they saw us cross that finish line. They were there for us, cheering us on, lifting us up, crying right there with us. Talk about 26.2 miles of gratitude.

And at the end of that very long day. Barely making it to 9pm before calling it a night. Not only was that the best night’s sleep ever (despite waking up many times groaning in pain), but it was the most content night’s sleep. 18 weeks: done. Goal: crushed.

We are marathoners. #teamsutera4lyf

Foodie Friday – the fuelin’ edition

Iiiiiiiit’s Foodie FRIDAY — the fuelin’ edition up in here!!!

(pardon the excitement here — apparently anytime I start talking about all things marathon training related, I get wicked excited…who have I become?! But I digress…this is a post for another day, hehe)

But seriously, it IS another edition of Foodie Friday and well, what’s not to get excited about? Plus, it’s Friday – the week (a rather un-fun one at that) is nearly behind us and the weekend is thisclose. Oh – and I have the pleasure of teaching two barre n9ne classes today (one first thing this morning and another tonight!). Oh happy day. 🙂

(again a digression, sorry — I’m a bit of a spaz these days)

Back to Foodie Friday — the fuelin’ edition…

Today I’m here to talk about how Scott and I have been fueling up for these epically long runs of ours. At first, we started with your standard chomps and things. For me — honey stingers. I love that they are made with all natural ingredients and aren’t pumped full of fake crap. No bueno. For Scott – gummi bears. He loves it. So cute.

An example:

BUT — what we’ve learned the longer our runs get is that we need more ‘real food’ when we’re out there for hours at a time. And I never ever thought I’d get to that point where I can fuel *almost* like a regular runner. By now you all know that I have a hard time running with much in my tummy. It’s never happy running ‘heavy.’

However, I’ve discovered the perfect, PERFECT solution to the real food ‘need’ on long runs coupled with the can’t-have-much-in-the-tummy-when-running issue.

Enter: HEALTHY BITES. 


…or as I like to think of them: tasty little bites of heaven. Made with lots of extra love from the most fabulous and totally genius creations ala Lindsay Cotter.  <–if you don’t know Lindsay yet, you MUST get to know her. She is incredible, with such a huge and loving heart, a kind soul, and SUCH creativity when it comes to cooking up these little bites of heaven. I heart her so. ❤

So these healthy bites — they are nothing short of amazing. I used to eat them as a fun little snack in the afternoons with an iced coffee (perfect combo, if you ask me!).

But now? They are incredible bites of fuel, mid-run. They give me SUCH a burst of energy, and man are they tasty. Even my super-duper-picky husband loves them (he’s a fan of the muddy buddy bites!) and will eat them mid-run. And if you know Scott, you KNOW this was no small feat to get him to even try them to begin with!!

So yeah — marathon training or not, these bites are awesome!! As I said, before training kicked in, I was eating these as little afternoon snack/pick-me-ups, a perfect little pre-dinner treat if you’re looking for a snack that’s bite sized and not too much of a caloric investment (most of them are about 50 cals each).

In short — I LOVE healthy bites. Love, love, love. And I think you should too. Just sayin.’

Anyway, that’s that – I love healthy bites, I’ve found a fueling strategy that works for me (and the hubs) and that makes me a VERY happy marathoning camper!

Happy (foodie) Friday friends!!

Thoughts on 26.2 — almost 8 weeks in

Scott and I are at the 8 week mark of marathon training. It’s crazy how fast the time is starting to fly, especially as I look at our training plan and gauge how far we have to go by the number (and length!) of our long runs to come.

It’s kind of insane. 
…but it’s also kind of exciting. 

It’s also utterly exhausting. A fact that I didn’t even realize until this week. A week marked by our first PDR level run – 14 miles that I kind of think we crushed if I do say so myself! 😉 But as the day and the weekend wore on, I realized just how tired I was. Literally in bed at 9:30 on Saturday night, up at 7:45 the next day (a solid 10+ hrs!). And then Sunday night was a later night given a wedding we attended so I got more like 7ish hours of sleep. Apparently that wasn’t enough. I came back from teaching my 6am barre n9ne class on Monday and at the sight of Scott still snuggled in bed, I climbed back in for (what I thought would be) a 5 minute snuggle fest.

…and promptly conked out for another hour+! 
This does not happen, ever.

Clearly I am in need of lots more sleep than this body normally needs.
Noted.

After this earth-shattering revelation of mine (gee, running  a shitton of miles week-to-week is tiresome, you don’t say!), I re-examined my training schedule. I think I’ve created a schedule that’s a wee bit too hardcore in terms of the drop-back weeks I’d added in. Let me rephrase that: the drop-back week (not weeks) I had planned for. After doing a little bit of research, I’m going with the consensus here and breaking our plan into three distinct sections — which means that I’ll have two drop-back weeks (vs. one) plus the taper weeks that’ll start our final drop-back in our plan.

Previously, I had budgeted in a drop-back week but it was only a few miles shy of our previous week’s long run. Now that I look at my plan more holistically, I’m realizing that I needed to drop back more than originally planned. So, here’s how the long runs look for us coming up:

This week15 miles (kind of excited about this, don’t know why)
Next week – drop back week: 10 miles for our long run
Going forward: 16, 18, 20 miles and then another drop-back week before we get into serious business: hello 22 miler, I’m kind of afraid of you!

I think this will help in two ways — um hi, it gives us a couple of mini-breaks in the action before ramping back up again into higher and higher milage, and it’ll reduce the risk of injury greatly. The last, last, last thing I want is to wind up injured. And oh yeah — I still want this to be a *fun* experience too, so the drop-back weeks will help keep the fun times rolling, ya know?

So anyway, just a few thoughts on where my head is at, the deeper we get into training. In all? I’m really finally finding a ‘love’ for the whole marathon training thing. At first, I was finding myself to be so apprehensive and unsure of how much I’d really enjoy the whole process. But truly? It’s becoming such a fun and interesting learning experience — and an awesome bonding time for Scott and I. A nice little side benefit, I do believe. 🙂

Athleta is here! (note to self: it’s time to shop!)

While I was off celebrating my 8-year wedding anniversary with the cutest husband ever on Tuesday night, I was missing the grand opening of Athleta at the Burlington Mall — a store I am SO SO SO excited has finally planted roots in our neck of the woods. I love their clothing — but more importantly, I love what they stand for…their “power to the she” campaign is just awesome. I just love the concept of the beauty that comes with strength and it’s so cool to see a brand embracing that and pushing the idea forward in such a fun way.  

So when Athelta asked if I’d like to interview Tess Roering, vp of marketing for Athleta, I was all for it. I mean, who doesn’t want to get inside the mind of a marketing guru behind such a positive brand for women? (plus it helps that marketing kinda runs through my blood given my “day job” and all, so I was interested from that perspective too).

In your view, what does Athleta stand for?
Athleta has it all—product, designed by women athletes for female athletes, for every athletic pursuit, from running to swimming to skiing to biking and everything in between. Our mission is to celebrate and serve women athletes of all levels and is unique because we offer both strength and beauty in all our products. We use technical fabrications and unique designs targeted at women athletes who want high performance in their activity, and incorporate meaningful details – reflective designs on flicker points, hidden pockets with locking zippers, thumb holes, quick drying fabrics, and more.  Athleta combines that with beautiful, feminine designs that make women look and feel beautiful. We also have a lifestyle collection we call “To Fro”, which are pieces she can wear “to” and “from” all her activities and that make her transitions easy and cute. <–I love this concept!!

What kinds of events and specials can clients expect to see from Athleta now that the new store is open?
The Burlington store will offer a variety of free, localized fitness classes throughout the month, such as yoga, Pilates, Zumba, or a run club. <shameless plug – barre n9ne will be hosting a class at the store on June 10th, for all of you local readers out there!> To the get latest information, visit our store page on www.athleta.com/stores.  Also, our stores have some excellent perks like really amazing customer service,  Performance Stylists who offer personalized styling sessions tailored to individual athletic pursuits and style, free in-store hemming, kiosks that link directly to the website offering customers access to additional product and sizes, and a discount to fitness professionals. Athleta also has a Sponsored Athlete program that is granted to women around the country on a yearly basis. This program celebrates the powerful life force and athletic accomplishments of a select group of women that embody the essence of Power to the She. Keep an eye out for our 2013 open application period.

Living fit is such a big part of the Athleta brand, how do you live a fit life, carrying that aspect through into all that you do for the company today?
You are so right in that a healthy, balanced life plays a huge part in the Athleta brand. I love to mix up my routine and am constantly trying different workouts.  I run three mornings a week, and mix in training sessions along with more hardcore drills in between.  At the office, we strive for a balance between strength, peace and health. You may find anyone on any day doing yoga in our studio, meeting the CrossFit crew for a workout or participating in the weekly run club. We also love to have fun; we go for team bike rides, give the office dogs a scratch between meetings, and take breaks in the sun. As you know, Power to the She was our first national marketing campaign and it really speaks to so many women across the country. “Power to the She” was created to celebrate our customers – from serious athletes to those considering entering their first 5k – and their abilities to do it all. They lead extremely active and busy lives but are still able to balance family, friends, exercise, work, and everything in between.  That’s really what “Power to the She” is about — being our best feminine and athletic selves while encouraging and inspiring each other to strive for more.

What’s your favorite workout? And by default, what’s your favorite newer piece of Athleta gear you like to wear while doing that favorite workout?
While I love trying new workouts, I’d have to say running is my favorite. We have so many great pieces for running and training, but I really can’t go without our Energy Tank as it’s extremely supportive and lightweight (and comes in fun, bright colors).  I also love the Hana 2 in 1 short – the outer short is loose-fitting while the internal short is fitted and has comfortable leg grippers so it doesn’t roll up. It also has a rear zip pocket, so I can run with my keys and phone if I need to!

What drew you to open a store on the North Shore?
For years our Boston area customers have been telling us they want a place where they can touch and feel – and try on – our beautiful performance and lifestyle products. So, we listened to our existing catalog and online customers to help us pinpoint a location nearest them. We are absolutely thrilled to be making our Massachusetts debut by opening in Burlington, providing a place for our customers to connect with and be inspired by other women athletes.

<<annnd on that note, I do believe I have some shopping to do this weekend!!>>

When it’s worth it.

I had a moment the other night.
…where I questioned.

…why does mindless eating — or the simple urge to — (an old, a very stubborn habit of mine that now and then likes to try to rear its ugly head) throw me into a tailspin of doubt and frustration?

…why do I push myself to run harder, faster, longer? Do I do it because I love it or because I simply can’t stop doing, going, moving?

…why do I sometimes beat myself up in those rare instances where I don’t give my workout every last ounce of strength and energy I have?

…why do I feel the need to strive for perfection all the time?

The answer? Well, it took me a day or two to get here but here’s the bottom line in all of this questioning and wondering I’ve been doing.

And really, there are two “answers” to the why’s.
…First off – I have some work to do in terms of quieting the mind, of striving for excellence instead of perfection. Note to self.
…but secondly, (and more importantly?) I do, I am, I strive…

…because I’m worth it.

The nearly year-long journey I’ve been on to reshape my eating habits – towards fueling (and downright delicious) foods, eaten with a mindfulness I never posessed before (and sometimes still struggle with, admittedly).

Worth it.

The same nearly year-long journey with barre n9ne, towards reshaping my body — but even more importantly — reshaping my mind. Around the concept of working smarter, not harder. Of connecting my mind with  my body with every plie, every shoulder raise, every glute lift. Of learning to love the mind and body that stares back at me from the mirror every day.

Worth it.

The miles and miles I’ve put into training and running half marathons. That has lead me towards a bucket list item of mine. The elusive 26.2 miler. Just once. I want to do it, just once. It’s a huge committment, but it’s mine to make.

Worth it.

The hours and weeks spent training to become barre n9ne certified. Which meant saying “no” to plans with friends on weekends, and even less time spent with my husband (our time already so short during the week given work schedules and ‘life’ in general) while in training. But those hours sacrificed with loved ones? Equalled chasing and captured a huge dream of mine.

Worth it.

So next time I start to question my intentions in life — from the very smallest to the very largest — I’m going to think back to this post.

The day where I remembered that I’m worth it.

Because if I remember that I’m worth it?

I’ll be a better wife to my husband who I adore.

I’ll be a better sister to my beautiful sisters who are my best friends.

I’ll be a better friend to those who constantly lift me up and support me, loving me for me (quirks and all).

I’ll be a better follower of His word, a believer in Faith and all the blessings that come with that.

Because that’s what matters most.
(said far more eloquently by Lindsay in her post yesterday, a total must read. And even though I read her post after writing this one, where for a split second I wondered if my own post sounded too “me-centric” — I reconsidered. Because part of our life “resume” is about fulfilling your own dreams and self-worth and in turn, passing that “worth” forward through the actions and emotions you share with loved ones to, in turn, lift them up higher, higher, higher…)

Fashion – not foodie – Friday

Ok so y’know how I’ve been traveling all week for work? Spending long days and nights in Cali in planning meetings, in team building sessions at night (i.e. dinner and drinks) and feeling rather sleep deprived and ready for the (very long) series of flights home tonight?

Well – ‘foodie friday’ just wasn’t happening today. My meals have consisted of cobbled together options I’ve brought with me (thank you healthy snack kit I packed on Sunday!), and as many  healthy choices as I could figure out, given how out-of-my-control most of my meals have been. In other words – I’ve done my best, but nothing compares to my own home-cooked meals (ohhh oatmeal, I miss you thiiiiis much!).

So in lieu of Foodie Friday, I figured I’d share a couple of my outfits from this week in Cali. Luckily, we were basically told to dress casual all week so I happily obliged with jeans for the duration of the week (I normally dress “up” in skirts, dresses, dress pants).

We’ll call this Fashion Friday – the traveling-for-work edition:

This is from the first day of meetings. I scored some super-cute finds at the Banana Republic Outlet while shopping with the hubs this weekend so a large part of that outfit is from there.  Sidenote: This outfit made me feel super fashionable and confident!

Jeans: The Limited
Tank: Banana Republic Outlet
Cardigan: Banana Republic Outlet
Necklace: Banana Republic Outlet
Earrings (if you can see them) and bracelet: The Limited
Shoes (which I realize you can’t really see in this pic): a score from my trip to Little Rock (Heather: remind readers what the name of the store was where we found these??)

This was almost an outfit fail. I was going to wear a dress that I brought but upon putting it on that morning, I just wasn’t feeling it. So I went back to the same jeans I wore the day prior and this top and cardigan combo. I’d actually worn the pink top under something else on my travel day to Cali on Monday but decided to wear it again because I didn’t have another tank to wear underneath this cardigan. I was annoyed that I had to re-wear the top but it turned out to be a pretty cute outfit so I guess it wasn’t a fail afterall. 😉

Jeans: The Limited
Pink top: The Limited
Ruffle cardigan: The Limited
Necklace and earrings: The Limited
Bracelet: Pandora
Shoes (which you can’t see…): Naughty Monkey
Bag: Coach Factory Outlet (purchased during one of their “secret sales” online, HUGE steal!!)

(and here’s a close-up of the shoes since you can’t see them in either of those pics – the black ones are Naughty Monkey, the bronze ones are from that store in Little Rock)

Thursday’s outfit involved another Banana Republic Outlet find – and I’m seeing quite the pattern here. Jeans, cardigan, cute tank and cute shoes. Am I predictable or what?? Geez.

Jeans: Seven for all Mankind (my favorite)
Tank: Banana Republic
Cardigan: Victoria’s Secret
Earrings: The Limited
Bracelet: Pandora
Shoes: the cute ones I got in Little Rock

Clearly there’s a big ass huge trend here. I love anything from Banana Republic, The Limited and Victoria’s Secret. In fact, I’m pretty sure that 95% of my wardrobe is from these three stores. The rest is made up of Lululemon, Brooks (sneakers — a new pair should be waiting for me at home that I scored from Amazon.com before I left for my trip, whee!) and Old Navy. Super-cute workout gear, oh how I love thee. 😉

So there you have it – my first fashionista style post, *very* out of the norm around these parts, I realize.  So I hope you don’t mind the slight detour from the usual this week but in the spirit of “un-routine” I figured it was only fitting. 😉

 Happy weekend!

(almost) Wordless Wednesday – Christmas edition

Well friends, I took my own advice.
Finally.

I went a little Type B on ya’ll while I enjoyed the holidays with my family and friends. Which meant (and means) a little hiatus from blogging, minimal tweeting and hardly any blog reading (sorry friends…this might be the only time I’ll ever hit “mark all as read” in Google Reader…we’ll see if I can actually go through with it or not).

So, while I take a little more “me” time while I’m off from work this week, I’ll leave you with some scenes from the holidays. It was an incredible three-day celebration….and I loved every minute of it. And best of all? It felt so balanced. I stuck to every workout I had planned (including a Christmas Eve visit to barre n9ne! <3). I didn’t overindulge…I indulged just enough. And I took a minute or two during each day we celebrated and I looked around, taking the sights and sounds in. And just breathed.

Cookie party 2011:

Christmas Eve!

Christmas Day/Day After!


(cutest.niece.ever.)

Core Fusion: revisited.

So, as I alluded to earlier this week, yesterday *may* have included a surprise visit to Exhale Spa to take a Core Fusion class with the one and only Fred Devito. My sis and I have taken two of his classes before and each time have been totally impressed with his calm, open demeanor and the way he can push you to try harder, focus more, work harder, in his classes.

And last night’s class was no different in that regard.

Fred was great, total class act, and definitely gave us the sweatfest we were looking for.

But what was different for us last night?
Two things, really.

First – how we felt in class. The last time we took one of Fred’s classes was just before we started the barre n9ne 60-day challenge. Both my sis and I were in fairly low places, body confidence wise at that point. Little did we know what the next four months was about to do for us, in us, around us. Transformative. That’s how I’d describe it, as I’ve said about a million times by now! 😉

And last night? We both walked away feeling like we held our own. Like we belonged. Like we did our best to own the barre (trust me, it owned me plenty of times, too!). We felt confident. Happy. Strong.

Second, though? We walked away from class having an even bigger appreciation for the barre. After taking countless barre n9ne classes in the past four months, we’ve grown used to lots and lots of time (literally) spent at the barre. Much more so than what we got out of last night’s Core Fusion class.  I actually (and I can’t believe I’m saying this) found myself sort of bummed when the barre work was essentially over after 10 minutes during Core Fusion last night.

Shocking – we actually LIKE more time at the barre versus less, who knew?? <—do you hear that Tanya? Does this mean I need to brace myself for the next barre fusion or barre method class I take??

In all, I really loved getting back to Core Fusion and having a chance to see Fred again. Especially given how changed I feel today versus the last time we took one if his classes.

What it also reminded me? That I utterly and totally have the barre running through my veins.

Yes, friends. It’s official:

Hi, My name is Jessica and I am a barre (n9ne) addict. 
That is all. 🙂

Blessed.

I’m sitting here at a loss for words.

Truly stunned by the beauty and power of faith.

Of prayers answered.

And of the support system that surrounds me and my loved ones.

…and without getting into too many details (far too many to get into here!)…my husband, my rock and my best friend, is finally employed once again.

After over a year of searching and discovering and learning.

Of outlining his new path…towards his dream. To return to his roots as a teacher.

…and today, that dream became a reality for him.

For those of you who know my husband, for him to teach is innate. His father was a teacher (and an amazing one at that). His aunt and uncle both teach.

…he should have been a teacher from day one.

But alas, his path to teaching ended up being a much longer road to get there. A detour that led him to me (we met while both working at the same supermarket). A detour I’m incredibly grateful for, for that reason alone.

So today, to see him come full circle. Returning to his roots. Reaching for and following his dreams?

Well I sit here today, humbled.  Joyfully so.

Overflowing with faith.

Blessed.

Proudest. Wife. Ever. ❤