We packed the car last night. Cora was heartbroken, like actively sobbing and just devastated when her trike didn't make it into the car. Then this morning, she was standing at the door at 5:40 with her swim suit and swim diaper in hand. "I do the trathlon toooooo," she cried. And she probably would have rocked it, she's just a year and a month too young. We soothed her pain with some Beauty on the Best on the car ride out (Belle is her new favorite) and she was her usual cheerful, easy-going, spectating self when we pulled up in the cold, dark shadows of the Keller Natatorium.
(After Claire's race; they had been separated for a whole hour and Cora was beside herself at the reunion)
Having never done a triathlon ourselves, we had absolutely no idea what we were doing, so we just copied everyone else and that worked out fine. Behold, our transition stations!
Some people brought chalk to decorate their spots which is a great idea if you are artistic and like to go the extra mile for your children.
We really only go extra inches. We only bought one water bottle to share among the five of us. Also no jackets.
Claire's group went first. She rocked her swim (that's her closest to the wall) and then took off with James to the transition area.
It was all a bit chaotic, but Cora and I made it to the bike path to see her come in at the end of her mile- she was smiling and confident, but as soon as she saw me yelled, "Mom, I'm too cold!"
Then it was the run, 1/3 mile for her group, but she got confused at the end and way off course so I yelled her name and pointed to the finish line and she burst into tears instead. Oops. We course-corrected, literally, and she crossed over while telling me, "Mom, it's my FIRST RACE! I just didn't know where to go! I shouldn't BE IN TROUBLE because I DIDN'T KNOW."
And since she'd already been up for 4 hours, and she has so much of me in her and I completely understand that any acknowledgement of imperfection is "being in trouble" I gave her sobbing self a hug and then handed her one of the pancakes they were making at the finish line.
We thought we'd have a while before Landon swam, but turns out we missed his swim and bike! By the time we realized what had happened, we ran back to the finish line - Claire, pancake, Cora, stroller, single water bottle, and all to see him racing to the finish!
He's a fast little runner. His group did a 75 yard swim, 3 mile ride, and 1 mile run, and somehow he did all that while I was giving Claire the pancake, but he had a great time and didn't seem at all bothered that we missed basically everything.
And then at 8:45 we were back in the car and headed home where Cora adopted Claire's medal as her own.
I ran to Target (always) and then taught barre and now I'm party prepping for a "cheap blind wine tasting" party we're having tonight. Ten couples, ten under-$10 wines wrapped in brown bags, score cards I made all by myself, apple cider sangria, and lots of delicious foods (this pumpkin cheesecake ball is on the menu!)- should be fun and I'm looking forward to finding out the winners and some new "house" wines for us to buy!
Earlier this week James turned 35 and we celebrated with his favorite dinner (flank steak, twice baked potatoes, sauteed carrots, bread) and this year's cake selection- funfetti with dark chocolate icing. I was skeptical, but he noted that yellow cake with chocolate frosting is amazing, so why wouldn't this? Airtight logic and I can't argue with the results.
The kids made him 1,000 cards, all of which Claire needed to walk him through in great detail.
As I watched him listen attentively and ask follow-up questions while Landon showed him his swim-related art and a tutu'd Cora bounced around asking for cake, I thought how much has changed from his first birthday we celebrated together (20th!) and how freaking awesome it all has been and is now. Thirties are fun.
Also, for those who have been concerned, Cora officially LOVES cake. Using her fork and her left hand, she shoveled it in as fast as she could and immediately requested more. Her party is in 4 weeks, so maybe this year her cake won't hurt her feelings again.
Now bring on the wine and pumpkin balls!