I turned 35 yesterday. I suppose I should be happy, since I now finally qualify for that “advanced maternal age” flag that’s already on my chart at my OB’s office. (Side rant: who on earth came up with that phrase? It makes me feel like one of those 60 year-old women who has her own grandbabies through IVF. It’s CREEPY.)

Anyway, you know, it’s fine. Everybody gets older, yadda yadda. I’m not exactly having a mid-life crisis about it over here.

And I have to say, one of the coolest things about social media? All the “happy birthday” wishes you get on Twitter and Facebook. That’s pretty awesome.

It was really nice that my birthday fell on a Sunday this year. We went out for breakfast, where Catie kept Dave and me entertained by making all kinds of funny faces.

Catie at breakfast

Catie making funny faces

Catie making funny faces

Funny Catie

(Lest you think my child is always this adorable and charming, I have to add that this was a TOTAL 180 from the night before, in which she and I stopped at a local pizzeria to pick up some dinner, and she was rude and insufferable the entire time we were there. Three year-olds are unpredictable, man.)

After breakfast, we walked around downtown Apex for a while. We’ve lived here for two and a half years, and we’d never done that before. Dave and I have talked a few times about how we don’t really feel as connected to this area as we did in Seattle, and I think a lot of it is our own fault, for not making the effort. And it turns out? The old-timey downtown part of our town is really cute, even though most of the shops were closed because it was Sunday. It didn’t matter, it was a gorgeous day outside, and the walk was nice. And we’ll be sure to do it again sometime when the stores are open, because there are a ton of neat places that we’d like to check out.

We hit the grocery store and headed home, where I got Catie settled on the couch with a Scooby-Doo movie, and I got my favorite part of my entire day: A NAP. I almost never take naps, and it seems to be something that pregnant ladies desperately need, so that was fabulous.

When I woke up, Catie and I put on our matching aprons and made my birthday cake together; she’s turning into quite a little sous-chef, that kid. It was strawberry with white frosting and pink decorations – guess who picked THAT out? Then she told me what the cake should say:

My birthday cake
“Happy birthday Mommy. Love, Catie.”

Um, sorry, Dave? There wasn’t room to fit his name on there anyway.

I have to add, this is NOT the first example of how horrible my handwriting is when it comes to writing things in frosting. Witness the cake I made the first year that Dave and I were dating (that’s 2004, for those of y’all keeping track):

Yeah. And he married me anyway. (After he asked me why I drew intestines on his cake – it was supposed to be a heart!!)

And now you know why we’ll be ordering Catie’s cake for her birthday party in two weeks.

Later, I got my present from Dave. He always gives really awesome gifts, and this year was no exception: I got a treadmill! Well, technically I got a photo of a treadmill because the real one is stuck in a snowstorm somewhere in the midwest, but it’s on its way here! But I’ve been asking for a treadmill for ages, so that was perfect.

The thing is, I loved doing the Couch-to-5K last year, and I want to start it up again after Baby 2.0 is born. But I am also a big whiny baby about running if the weather is anything less than perfect. If it’s too hot or too cold, I’m probably not going to do it. And I learned last year that I actually do like running on a treadmill, but I tend to get lazy about it if I have to get dressed, find my membership card, drive 10 minutes to the gym, etc. So the idea is that having the treadmill in the house will force me to stop making excuses. (That actually does work with me too, it’s why I’m much more likely to stick with a workout DVD than a gym class.) Plus, I figure that with two kids in the house, it might just be easier for me to squeeze in a quick workout if I can do it without leaving the premises.

So, treadmill! Yay!

We finished off the night with burgers, fries, birthday cake (of course) and “The Social Network,” which was a really good movie.

All in all? 35 is pretty good so far. No complaints here.

My Patella-ella-ella

*Apologies if that Rihanna song gets stuck in your head.

So, I’ve been doing the Couch-to-5K workout for the past several weeks. It’s taking me longer than it’s supposed to, because I am… well, I’m pretty horribly out of shape, so I’m not advancing to the next level until I feel like I’ve gotten a handle on the current one. (Read that as: when I’m pretty sure that increasing the length of running time isn’t going to make my lungs pop out of my chest and leave me dead on the sidewalk.)

Oh, also, I gave up on working out in the gym because I realized that having to gather up my membership card, water bottle, etc., and the drive there & back added an extra half hour, and I’d prefer to use that time sleeping. So now I just run around the neighborhood.

Anyway, I was doing ok, but yesterday I hurt my knee again. It’s the same problem I always have with my knee; any sort of strenuous exercise always makes my knee hurt (see: the 30-Day Shred). Years ago, my mom diagnosed it as, “You got your Grandmother’s knees,” because my dad’s mom always had issues with her knees too. I was running with my knee brace on, and I was wearing my Vibram Five Fingers, which are supposed to help with joint pain. And I was totally fine while I was running; I mean, I felt like I was going to die, like I always do, but my knees were fine. Then I got home, took my knee brace off, and my leg sort of buckled and my knee tried to go backward like a flamingo. Dammit.

I was thinking that this new injury would mean the end of the Couch-to-5K, and I was really pissed because I honestly like it. I like running around outside when it’s still dark outside and seeing the sunrise. (I am not a fan of running past the teenagers waiting for the school bus, but you know, whatever.) So I decided to make an appointment with a sports medicine doctor. Which is sort of hilarious given how completely un-athletic I am. But I wanted an official diagnosis of exactly what it is that’s wrong with my knee, and what I can do to fix it.

My fear was that they’d just say sorry, you got some crap DNA, and tell me that I’d never be able to do any type of strenuous exercise. Which would pretty much be the end of the world for me because if the only form of exercise I can do is, say, swimming? No. If I’m required to put on a swimsuit to work out, it’s a pretty safe bet that I’m just not ever gonna do it. Then it’d be, hello 200+ pounds, nice to see you again.

Anyway, the news was much better than I thought. Turns out that my patella (kneecap bone) is slightly shifted (on both of my knees, although since my right leg is dominant, that seems to be the one that always gets injured first), and they gave me some exercises and stretches I can do to try to correct it. After doing these exercises twice a day, I should be a lot better in about three or four weeks.

Bonus: after my appointment, I got to call Dave at work and tell him that part of my physical therapy involves tying myself to our bed. It’s nothing that kinky, honestly, it’s just an elastic band that I have to attach to the foot of our bed and then tether it around my ankle to do some of the stretches. So it’s fine and totally G-rated. But man, listening to him do a spit-take with his coffee that early in the morning? Priceless.

So it was all good news. And in the meantime, since I don’t want to give up the progress I’ve made with the Couch-to-5K, I’m going to be power-walking in my new Skechers Shape-Ups, since those are also supposed to help with joint pain. (Aside: between the Shape-Ups and the VFFs, I feel like I’m starting an Ugly Shoe Collection. What is wrong with me? I used to buy cute shoes. Now I’m all about buying what’s “functional.” It’s sad, really.)

And when my knees are feeling stronger, I’m gonna jump right back into the Couch-to-5K. Only, you know, not literally jump, since that might screw up my knees again, and lord knows we don’t want that.