Thursday, December 31, 2009

On the eve of 2010, I would just like to say that 2009 has been a fantastic year for me.
December 31st, 2008 I joined Weight Watchers and started an amazing journey of weight loss and health and running goals and did things with my body that I thought were nearly impossible.

I lost 30 lbs.

I trained 10 months for a marathon.

I completed that marathon with a smile on my face (most of the way).

I was brave and took a class that I knew nothing about, with nobody I knew, and tried a brand new job.

I discovered my dream job for the moment and am so happy to be working at camp.

And now I'm going to have a baby and start our little Mecher family.

I'm going to go ahead and say that 2009 has been my best year to date. I hope 2010 brings just as many great things!

Tuesday, December 22, 2009

It just happened a few days ago.
I was in our kitchen baking cookies and I looked down.
And, all of a sudden, I couldn t see the button on my jeans anymore.
There was this small-ish belly bump in the way.
It happened so suddenly!
And, again, I looked at Kyle and said, "Wow, I really AM pregnant!"
I still don t believe it.
(FYI, the apostrophe key on the Mecher s computer doesn t work for some reason. Try not to be confused.)

Unfortunately this cute little bump means that my cute little jeans do not fit so well anymore. My sister-in-law Brooke told me about a little trick with a hair-tie, which has been working out nicely, but luckily today I am going over to borrow her Bella Band!

Also today, I am having coffee with my Megan, getting a manicure, getting a haircut from Kassi, and going to see the Nutcracker. Yay for Jenny Day!

Friday, December 18, 2009

Yesterday, at my doctor's appointment, I mentioned to my doctor how sick I've been feeling- and, as a result, how little I've been able to work and how little I've been able to exercise (which has been causing severe lower back pain). He wrote me a prescription for a MIRACLE drug called Zofran. I feel one thousand times better. I woke up this morning and ate some cereal on the couch, where I usually sluggishly lay, trying not to throw up, until I have to get ready for work, when I inevitably crash on my bed halfway through getting dressed because of the exhaustion of trying not to feel so horrible. This morning, however, I finished my cereal and then felt a little antsy. My legs were kind of bouncing and I was thinking, hey, I could totally go do some yoga right now- or hop in the shower. It was an AMAZING feeling.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Well. I threw up for the first time this morning. It was mostly because I saw Cinnamon Toast Crunch floating in the toilet because Kyle didn't flush them all the way.

Also, if you're wondering what I had for dinner last night, it was the following: vegetable beef soup, blueberry bagel with cream cheese, tator tots, and three oreos with milk. Some of these choices were directly related to foods I was seeing on Food Network. Diners, Drive-ins, and Dives makes me want to eat everything!

AND, yesterday, when I was having a super-junky sick day, Kyle surprised me with four tickets to the Joffrey Ballet Nutracker next Tuesday and my best friend, Megan, and her husband, Scott, are coming!!! He's the best!!!

Monday, December 14, 2009


Coming July 1, 2010.

Thursday, December 3, 2009

Kyle busted out this hat for the winter:

I can't stop laughing about how ridiculous it is. I'm finding it hard to get any work done.

This morning I decided that today is "comfort is key" day. It means wearing your most comfortable clothes (sweatpants) to work. It also means bringing your favorite candle to work to have burning on your desk while you work.

Last winter I bought a new parka from LL Bean. I loved it. It was long and warm and perfect. EXCEPT that for some reason I decided I wanted a large so that I could fit puffy sweaters under it and everything, so when I got it last winter (still about 30 lbs. overweight), it was a little large. Now that I am down to a healthy weight it is much, much too large. I called LL Bean to see if I could send it back this winter for a smaller size, but they wouldn't do it. I was having a moral dilemma as to whether I should break the zipper and call them to tell them that my coat wasn't functioning and I needed a new (and smaller) coat, BUT yesterday a friend from church came up to me (who is aware of this whole annoying coat situation) and said that she wanted to buy a coat for a needy woman in our community and offered to buy MY coat (for full price!), so that she could have a coat and I could buy a new one that fit! Isn't that wonderful?! I'm buying a new one TODAY!

Friday, November 20, 2009

Since finding a jar of fluff at Angeli's for NINETY NINE CENTS last night, I am obsessed with fluffernutters. I have had TWO since last night (last night I ate my with three pickle spears, somehow the perfect combination). Thank you, Miss Jenna, for showing me the way of the "Fah-luffewnuttew."

I also was super sad to see that Oprah is ending her show! The TV world will be such a strange, strange place. AND what is Chicago to do now?

Wednesday, November 18, 2009

Don't worry. There's an 8-point buck hanging from the swingset outside. Yech.

Thursday, November 5, 2009

Thankful Thursday.

A friend of mine gave me the idea to write five things that I'm thankful for. It's a good practice for me... sometimes I get a little whiney.

1. I'm thankful for Kyle. I think most of you can not even fathom how nice to me he is- how many times he does all of our laundry from start to finish and never complains that I didn't help, how every night before we go to sleep he says, "If you need anything, wake me up, I'll be right here," how every time we come home from out of town he unloads the entire car while I stay warm inside. He is too wonderful.

2. I'm thankful for my church. It was a bumpy start to our relationship, as it was really hard for me to move here, but the people at my church are probably my favorite part about living in Iron River. And when I think about ever moving away, I think leaving them will make me the saddest. I've been more surprised, welcomed, blessed, fed, and challenged by them than by any other group of people.

3. I'm thankful for my job. It's been a long search to find- not even something that I love, but just a job that I didn't hate. And now I feel like I have my dream job for the moment. The people I work with are my family and I get to use so many different gifts from day to day and learn so many new things and do something that I really feel matters in the world.

4. I'm thankful for extras that I don't deserve. I'm thankful for a silly thing like satellite tv at the beginning of a long winter. I'm thankful for getting $15 jeans at J. Crew yesterday. I'm thankful for good books and flu shots and raspberries being on sale and extra pasty nuggets for free and getting to bring a sick cousin an apple pancake. Thank you God for all of the little gifts that I don't deserve.

5. I'm thankful for having a God in my life who knows me and loves me and makes me grow into a better person every day... who looks at me and my whiney-ness and my laziness and my meanness and loves me anyway because He knows what I can be and what He wants me to be and what I will be.

Thank you God. You are TOO good to me.

Saturday, October 31, 2009

Holy cow, is it Halloween today, or what? The weather in the UP couldn't be more Halloween-y. It's kind of cold and super windy, so all the dry, dead leaves are whirling around on the ground.

SO, today I went to the Pasty Corner on the way home from the grocery store for a little treat. I had two dollars in my wallet, so I figured I could get a few pasty nuggets (35 cents a pop- what a deal!). So, I went in and asked the guy if they had pasty nuggets today (you have to ask if they have EVERYTHING besides regular pasties before you order because they run out of everything) and he checked and said they had about nine left. I said I'd take five and ran out to my car to get some change to cover the rest of my bill. When I came back in, he handed me the bag which seemed very full and heavy for five pasty nuggets. When I got in the car, I checked and he had given me all the rest of the nine pasty nuggets and only charged me for five! What a great day!

I haven't been sleeping very well the past couple of days--- I think it might be because I haven't gotten back into a workout routine since the marathon and my body hates me. Needless to say, I'm really sleepy today, so I think Kyle and I, maybe Colby, are going to stay home and carve pumpkins, eat mini-fall-Reese's peanut butter cups and caramel apple slices, and watch The Great Pumpkin, Charlie Brown tonight. What a great Halloween.

Tuesday, October 27, 2009

Today is a beautiful fall day in the UP- finally! It's cold, but it's really sunny and pretty outside. The leaves are all pretty much gone.

I have been fortunate enough to have nice, indoor, sit-down jobs at camp for the past two days. For parts of yesterday and today I have been sitting in Kyle's office cutting up old t-shirts and towels for rags. While doing this, I have been listening to For those who don't know, pandora is a music website where you can enter an artist that you like and then the website creates a playlist, or "station" for you that plays songs that have similar qualities to your favorite artist. It is fantastic! Yesterday I put in Van Morrison and have been listening to James Taylor, Cat Stevens, Jack Johnson, Norah Jones, Joe Cocker, Dave Matthews, Otis Redding, Ray LaMontagne, The Stones, Bob Dylan, The Beatles, CCR, The Band (and obviously, Van Morrison)... basically all of my favorite music!

Yay for Biggest Loser tonight! That Tracey is Cuh-razy!!!

Wednesday, October 14, 2009

I finished!!!
My official time was 5:42, a little slower than I had hoped, but I'm still really happy with it! I finished over a full hour faster than the last time I ran the Chicago Marathon! Guess I'll have to run another one to hit that 5:30 time!

I had some really great help along the way- I'm not sure I could have made it without them! First, I ran into Alicia and Krista at like mile 6, which was so fun and a major pick-me-up. Then, my Aunt Marilyn picked me up at mile 13 and ran to 17 with me, where my cousin Michelle picked me up and ran with me to 24, where we met up with my Aunt Marilyn again and my Dad. The four of us ran together just about to the finish line- it was so much fun!

I also had some really great cheerers! Thanks Wendy, Tristan, Skylar, Lynn, Gladdy, Leslie, Patti, Katie, Ben, Mom, Bill, Megan, and Scott! And everyone else cheering at home!

Here are pictures from mile 11:

Some of my superfans, Skylar and Tristan!
I was SO EXCITED to finally see someone I knew!

Look how reflective I am!
My Uncle Joe was at mile 25 and took some pictures of me and my crew- here we are!

From left: me (in pink), Dad (in black),
Aunt Marilyn (grey hoodie, black pants), and Michelle (white hat)

At the finish! Dad told me to "empty the tank" and I sure did!

More superfans- Katie and Ben

Again with the crew

My sweet medal!
I came home from the race, took a 15 minute ice bath, ate a Beach Club from Jimmy John's, and fell asleep for three hours. I woke up feeling super-nauseous, so I took another bath (warm this time, thank goodness!) and watched tv with Lynn. All of a sudden, the nausea went away and I was STARVING! I had Gladdy bring me back a beef from Jay's and ate the whole thing in probably two minutes. Then, I ate an entire bowl of soup and a king-sized Twix ice cream bar and went to sleep for another 10 hours... but not before taking this picture!

Brixton, Mei, me, Olivia, Grayden, and Skylar
(points of interest: Skylar's sweet volunteer jacket,
my cool Chicago t-shirt, and Mei holding my massage stick)

My prayers went okay. The race was much more mentally demanding than I expected and there were many times that miles went by before I remembered to pray for each thing, I made up for them when I remembered, until I met up with Aunt Marilyn at mile 13. I spent so much time talking with my family and they were so good at distracting me from my pain and stomach problems that the prayers fell by the wayside. I definitely finished praying for them today while I was working, though, don't worry!

Thursday, October 8, 2009

Tomorrow morning I will be heading down to Chicago for the marathon. I am so excited for fun with Abby, coffee and chicken chili with Megan, going to the expo with my dad, and, obviously, the race!

This year I lost 30 lbs., became a real runner, stuck to a training program for this race for 10 months, found the job of my dreams, and realized that the best place and time to talk to God is while running. I am so excited to celebrate all of these things on Sunday and to spend about five and a half hours or so thinking about what will be next. I would really like to run the Disneyworld Marathon, run the NYC Marathon, and improve my 5k time.

I decided to take the 26.2 miles of my run and pray for one thing/person at each mile marker. I have about half of the slots filled. You would think it would be more than easy to think of AT LEAST 26 (.2) things to pray about, but it has not been for me. I am hoping to be inspired over the next few days to fill the slots. If anyone who would like to join me in praying for Covenant Point at mile 4 (which will probably be around 9:00 am), I think that would be really neat.

I was also inspired by John Bingham to come up with three goals for my race. They are as follows:
1. Pray for 26 (.2) things
2. Start out slow and finish strong
3. Be a do-er (to recognize opportunities God gives me to love and care for people and DO THEM!)

If you're interested in receiving texts or emails when I cross a few mile markers or if you want to run a few with me, call me, email me, or leave a comment!

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Random post-camp pictures.

Stroms visiting

Berry picking with Skylar and Olivia

This girl is so crazy!

Kyle made me try waterskiing and insisted that I would love it.
I did not love it.
I hated it.

He still loves it.

One weekend Kyle, Colby, and I went hiking. We are clearly not good at taking pictures. We have three from that trip and I am the only one in all of them.

Reading The Red Tent. Loved it!

The next weekend, Erin came to visit. Again, no pictures of Erin or Colby. Sorry, guys!
We got delicious lunch at this restaurant and ate it by Lake Superior. Then we went to Starbucks, of course. We walked around downtown Marquette, got ice cream, ate at the Vierling, and drove home.

I love this picture of Kyle.

It reminds me of this picture.

At the park where we ate lunch, while we were leaving, Colby was walking ahead of us kind of strutting and reciting some movie line. This kid on the playground right next to Colby, who couldn't have been more than 7 years old, said, "Okay, seriously, you think you're like the coolest person ever." We DIED!
Below are some pictures from our vacation to Chicago several weeks ago. As usual, Kyle and I were not so good at taking pictures. And again, we spent an entire weekend with Nikki and Ryan without taking any pictures. We just have too much fun together to stop and take out our cameras, I guess.

On Tuesday, Kyle and I biked to Roscoe Village and read at my favorite Starbuck's. Here I am looking deliriously happy. Afterwards we went to Red Robin (Yum!) and Tre Kronor (for dessert. and Joe. and Kassi.) with Megan and Scott.

On Wednesday, Kyle, Lynn, and I biked to the Green City Market in Lincoln Park. It was awesome- one of my favorite things we did this week!

On the way home, we stopped at Sweet Mandy B's (Yum again!) for some treats.

Later that night (I think) the boys helped Lynn make sugar cookies for the other boys (Caleb and Jackson).

On Thursday I did my 20 mile marathon training run. It was pretty fun. We found a really nice route that took me through Old Irving Park, past Lane, through Roscoe Village, and along the lake. The last couple of miles were brutal. I could barely pick up my legs to get them over the curb- if it wasn't for Kyle, I'm not sure I would have finished!

Ah, Starbuck's. I wanted to stop, but I kept on runnin!

Just a few buildings down, Lynn and Colby DID stop for breakfast at Kitsch'n- yum yum!

When I made it back to the Mecher's I sat in a bathtub of ice for 20 minutes, ate an entire beach club from Jimmy John's and took as 1 1/2 nap. All of those steps saved my life, I believe, and I will definitely implement them on marathon day... in just EIGHT DAYS! AHHHHHHHHH!

The rest of our vacation was really great. That weekend we drove to Nikki and Ryan's in South Bend and then drove to Cedar Point. Kyle was SO EXCITED for this part of our vacation. We went on our first roller coaster, the Millenium Force, Kyle put his arms in the air, and just over the first drop, his right shoulder popped out for the fourth time. I hated the coaster and was holding on for dear life the whole time, so I didn't notice anything was wrong until the ride was over. Poor Kyle rode the whole roller coaster like that! We ended up having to go to the emergency room and once we survived the kooky EMS people at Cedar Point, the ER in Sandusky did a great job of getting that arm back in quickly and Kyle seems to be recovering really well.

At some point, we celebrated my sister, Katie's EIGHTH birthday! Holy cow! I can't believe she's EIGHT! She got her ears pierced for her birthday and was so cute about getting tons of earrings for her birthday. I love my Katie and Ben!

I also stopped and visited Grandma Mary and spent some time with Aunt Marylin and Uncle Ken- so fun! Aunt Marylin changed my life by introducing me to "0 point" yogurts and "1 point" Hostess snack cakes on that visit!

The final stop for our vacation was at the hospital to see our new nephew, Emmett!

He's so precious. And Courtney looked fabulous! I hope I look that good after I have babies!

Thursday, September 10, 2009

Jenny's First Dump Run

Jenny is now a full-time staff and she had her first trip to the dump.
She now owns a pair of Carharts and is expanding her manual labor wardrobe.
She's pretty hardcore, especially with those shades.

Just to clarify, Kyle made this post. I do not talk about myself in the third person.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009


You may be wondering to yourself how many headless mice you see on the road while you're running eighteen miles. Or how in the world you discover that you have chocolate all over the boob region of your shirt halfway through. Or at what point you decide HECK WITH IT and start singing aloud along with your iPod. Or just how many gallons of ice you pour into a bathtub after it's all said and done. The answers are as follows:

1. Two.
2. This happens when you buy all chocolate flavored energy bars and then keep them in your hand as you attempt to rebuckle the chest strap on your Camelbak over and over again.
3. Around mile 14 or 15.
4. Five.

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Well, friends, we caved. A nice man is installing a satellite dish on top of our house as we speak. Since we moved here, we were receiving NBC and PBS, which was plenty for us. With our Netflix account, we were good to go during those long winter months. But, since the digital conversion we receive a big fat ZERO. No television whatsoever. So, after several conversations, we decided to get a satellite dish. We'll be getting all kinds of fun channels like History Channel, Food Network, and TLC in just a few short hours!

Monday, August 17, 2009

Just a little update- I went for a 45 minute run (about 4 miles) and felt really great and especially felt really great afterwards. Hooray! Just what I needed!

Also, another update: Total Weight Watchers weight loss: 31 lbs!!!!
I hadn't weighed in for about a month, since I earned my lifetime member status and had somehow lost over 2 lbs. since then. I said to the lady at the scale, "I don't know how this keeps happening, it just keeps falling off!" And she said, "Hey, you could do a commercial for us!"
Kyle and I went to see some very kind doctor-friends last night who have a house on the lake. They diagnosed my breathing problems as a side affect of stress and "prescribed" me some vitamins to take. They also suggested that I start running again as a means of stress relief!!! Hooray! I'm going for my first run in 2 1/2 weeks and I'm so excited!

It's been so fun to have the Rills here. Mei is a doll, and although she's very quiet, she's smiling a lot. I think she's going to be a lot of fun!

Well, back to my very quiet kitchen.

Saturday, August 15, 2009

It's the last day of camp.
We're deep cleaning everything and then we have our staff dinner at Paul Bunyan's Cook Shanty in Minocqua this evening. I'm so excited to wear my red birthday dress again!

And then Fenwick starts tomorrow and we get to meet Mei Lynn finally! Hooray!

I am still having annoying breathing problems. The day after I was in the ER, Kyle and I went to the walk-in clinic and talked with a doctor. He ruled out asthma and suggested it might be allergies. He was so kind and prescribed me (and gave me samples) of several different medications to try so that I don't have to keep going back when one doesn't work. He WAS, however, using the phrase "medical mystery" kind of frequently, which clearly bothered me. I've been taking a higher dosage of anti-inflammatory steroids and Singulair, which I think might be helping.

Two days ago I was really feeling much better and thought for sure this would be over soon. And then yesterday morning it rained and then was super duper hot, which, if this is an allergy thing, I'm sure did not help. I had such a rough day breathing in the kitchen. And then last night when I was trying to go to sleep I, like, went into panic mode and was heaving for breaths. Kyle had to talk to me about crazy things to distract me. Fortunately, he's really really good at that and it worked. He's sooooooo wonderful!

Another bummer part about this breathing thing is that I haven't run in two weeks!About two weeks ago, I took a week off of marathon training to stretch and rest my body and immediately started having these problems. So now I've been off of marathon training for two weeks. I can't do anything, because almost everything takes the wind out of me. I hate not running.

Wednesday, August 12, 2009

Well, we took a little trip to the emergency room last night... a little August tradition of mine. I've been having a hard time breathing for the past week, so yesterday I went to talk to the camp nurse and she encouraged me to go get checked out. I'm not, like, dying or anything- it's just very uncomfortable to try to work like this. At the ER I was given an inhaler and some steroids, neither of which have made a noticeable difference so far, but I'm hoping and praying that they will soon. Around the time that this started happening, I also started doing yoga outside in my backyard everyday after lunch. And every day after lunch is when these breathing problems would flare up. We suspect I have some kind of late summer allergy, so I'm going to go to the doctor soon to figure this out.

I had to go fill my prescription this morning (because, don't worry, our pharmacy closes at SEVEN O'CLOCK P.M.) and had a really nice, relaxing drive through town running some errands. It was actually just how I wanted to start my day. I even got to stop by the library- I haven't been there since May! I'm getting so excited for fall to go to the library, go grocery shopping and cook for normal amounts of people, clean out our house, get "back to school clothes", go on vacation, make apple everything with FREE apples around camp, go to football games, start youth group, start my favorite job ever, and run my marathon, among many other things! Yay for camp almost being over!

Sunday, August 9, 2009

The triathlon was so fun! I PR'd my 10k today! My last 10k was around 1:09 and today I ran it in 1:08:27. WOOHOO! AND, when I came in on the run, Bjorn, Melissa, and all the kitchen crew were at the finish line banging pots and mixing bowls with wooden spoons.

I have the rest of the evening off, finally, and am going to read, take a nap, and then go see Up with Kyle and hopefully Erik and Courtney as well. I very much need a nap and a shower.

One more week of camp to go!!!

Wednesday, August 5, 2009

We are right in the middle of the second of three weeks of family camp. I'm getting pretty tired. Last night I thought I was getting sick. All of my extremities felt like Jell-o and I was just kind of waiting to throw up all evening. I feel better this morning, after having slept for 11 hours last night!

I skipped my long 14 mile run this morning. I'm really sad about it. I haven't really missed a run since January. But I'm getting sick, my back has been killing me, my heels are starting to hurt, and my knees have been giving me problems while I'm running, so with 9 weeks to go in my marathon training, I think I'm going to take a few days off to rest up my body, do some yoga and some strength training, and get ready for the home-stretch. I hope this is a good, wise runner's move. I'll celebrate by running the lake on Sunday with our kitchen triathlon team! With the exception of Bjorn, I expect that we'll probably finish terribly. Melissa is going for her first swim this summer today, so...

The Stroms have been with us for the past few days and that has been so fun. Although I don't get to see them all that often, it's fun to come home to kids on the swings and such.

And we are anxiously awaiting the arrival of Mei Lynn! We have been reading so much about her and cannot wait to meet the newest Rill! I even purchased some new Hairwear in celebration!

We're praying for a strong finish to the summer and looking forward to some rest soon!

Saturday, August 1, 2009

Yay for the Daintys visiting! Our good friends Ryan, Nikki, and Leah came to visit last week and it was so fun having them here. Unfortunately, we were having SO much fun that we didn't take any pictures until the day they left. But, here we all are!

Back: Ryan, Leah, Kyle, Me
Front: Nikki, Jane, Chuck
We're already plotting our first family vacation...
Here are some long overdue pictures. They are all from the celebration of my birth!

Starting out the day with my favorite boy...

Who served me coffee in my favorite mug...

And made Colby and I delicious sticky buns...

And made us special birthday plates (that are definitely NOT Christmas tree plates covered up with strawberries).

After a long drive down to Chicago, with some stops at Taco Bell and the Outlet Mall, as promised, out to dinner I went with my family.

After a delicious dinner, the waitress brought Amy and I each a plate of chocolate covered strawberries and whipped cream- in addition to the TWO giant brownie sundaes and key lime pie my dad ordered!

Dad and Patti
Mom and Bill
Then we headed to the Globe for the best birthday party I've ever had in my life. SO FUN.
Me and Kassi

Me, Joe, and Kichul

My beautiful AmyMe and Megs

Me and Derbear

Amy and Kassi's apartment. Obviously.