Marathons, Rain Gear, and Books


The biggest news of the weekend? Chris finished his Seattle Marathon in 3:25, almost a full hour faster than his time last year (blog post from last year here). He’s been training a lot more AND more importantly, dropped 25 pounds from last year’s race weight. I know, I know, I have no idea where he was hiding that 25 pounds because he was in shape last year. I secretly think that he’s losing all the weight, hoping to intersect my weight when I hit month 9 with our Bramble Baby 2.


The salmon are making their annual migration in Washington state, going back to their birthplaces to spawn (and then die soon thereafter). Despite the incredible ‘liquid sunshine’ display the PNW gave us, the entire Faiola family clan ventured on a hike to see the salmon run. Jamisen was intrigued by the majestic creatures and thankfully didn’t seem to notice many of them weren’t really moving anymore.


Does his outfit remind you of Paddington Bear? It kept him mostly dry but his pants still got soaked. He was such a little trooper, walking an entire half mile in pouring rain, without complaint.


Clearly, we did not starve at Thanksgiving. We were also joined this year by Granddog Toby (Erik’s contribution to the grandchild mix), who feasted on Pumpkin Apple pancakes for breakfast. The entire family, well, except Chris who is mostly forced into it, is vegetarian so our Thanksgiving celebrations involve lots of pasta and vegetables. They sound simple but we sure manage to outdo ourselves every year with elaborate vegetarian deliciousness.


It was sure nice to go to Grandma and Grandpa Faiola’s house for a few days because Grandma took care of Jamisen almost the entire time, leaving me to lounge luxuriously on the couch and read (with a slightly guilty conscience since so many of the Bramble Berry team worked all weekend to ship out orders). I finished two books (I’ll admit, they were trash books – the new Clive Cussler and the new one in the YA Matched series. I went through a phase after ‘Hunger Games’ when I read a lot of YA.). We also saw ‘Life of Pi’ (I read the book and felt like the move was pretty true to the book plot line) and played some fierce ‘Settlers of Catan’ games after Jamisen went to bed at night. It was such a treat to have Grandma (and Grandpa) take on all the heavy duty parenting tasks (I didn’t change a poopy diaper for three days!) that we might need to make Thanksgiving at their house a tradition.

I hope you had an equally relaxing, family-filled weekend. Christmas will be here before we know it!

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  1. says

    That is wonderful about his race time! Are you pregnant again? Congrats! My first is about the same age as your son (she will be 2 years and 5 months when I deliver this baby), and I am about 30 weeks along with this pregnancy. I was not soaping when I was pregnant with her, I just got started about a year ago, but have been soaping like mad throughout this pregnancy. I really enjoyed reading your post about EO use during pregnancy and although I wear a respirator and gloves and goggles it makes me feel better to know that I am not the only one soaping through pregnancy! Good luck with everything, do you want a girl or a boy this time?

    • Anne-Marie says

      Yes, pregnant again. Due in May and very excited about it. It sounds like you and I are doing the same thing with the timing. Jamisen will be 2 years, 1 month apart from his little sister or brother.

      Totally know what you mean about being paranoid about soaping (and EVERYTHING) when you’re pregnant. I soaped with Jamisen (a lot!) and of course, continued working at Bramble Berry through my entire pregnancy and am doing the same now. I did call some fragrance houses and see what they do with their pregnant employees (they keep working) to get that anecdotal info to share with my OBGYN.

      We’d be happy with either a boy or a girl. If it’s a boy, we have everything but of course, playing Princess sounds super fun too.

  2. says

    Wow, congrats to Chris on his marathon – 3:25 is a fantastic time! Shaving nearly an hour off of the clock in one year is very impressive! I’ve done three marathons myself and I know how much work goes into getting ready for one. My PR is 4:25:30, and I think I’m done with marathons now. Looks like you all had a great Thanksgiving – Jamisen is so cute in his Paddington Bear rain slicker! And congrats again on Bramble Baby #2!

  3. Karen Pettinger says

    Everyone needs a break now and then, Anne-Marie, so you shouldn’t feel guilty. You have a beautiful family – LOVE the little rain suit on your little man! Congrats to your hubby on what sounds like two great achievements.