Is that spring I feel? Let’s get updated.

Oh, hi there!  Lots of things to update, but let’s start with the fact that I no longer live in the greater Charlotte, NC area.  My family and I up and moved to Michigan (where we’re from) back in the fall.  For those that haven’t seen a news channel in the past 6 months, Michigan had the worst winter… like, EVER.  Records were set for snowfall as well as frigid temps.  Good timing, huh?  It pretty much was the icing on the cake for us, wrapping up a pretty rough 2013.

Oh, but, HEY- it’s 2014!!!  It’s been an awesome year so far and spring is on the horizon. We’ve finally had a day warm enough for me to run outside… in shorts!  EEK!!!!

I’ll go ahead and bullet point some family updates to keep this return post short.

  • EMERY.  My sweet boy is 15 months today!  It’s been a long road, as he has had some developmental delays that have led to a diagnosis of mild cerebral palsy.  For those that have been readers, I had a rough pregnancy with him, but luckily we’ve had nothing but negative test results on all tests that have been run (MRI’s, blood work, genetics, you name it).  His diagnosis comes from his symptoms (delays in gross motor skills) so we’re fortunate in that he should be able to hit all milestones, just delayed.  Example: He JUST now started crawling and last month learned to pull himself up to stand.  These things typically would’ve happen a looooong time ago, but that’s okay.  I like to think it’s just God’s way of letting me enjoy having a baby a little longer (he’s probably the last).
  • RILEY!  Oh my Ri-girl.  She is as smart, adorable and sassy as ever.  She loves being up here in Michigan, so close to all of her cousins and her Gram-gram. Can you believe she is 3 1/2?!  Crazy.
  • RYAN.  A big part of our move was because Ryan left a BRUTAL job situation.  I am SO happy to say that he found a new job up here in MI fairly quickly and has gotten nothing put positive praises for his hard work and dedication.  Plus, he LOVES it!  It makes me so happy seeing him enjoying what he’s doing.
  • As for me, i’ve been devoting the majority of my time to Emery.  I’ve wanted to blog, but just haven’t had the time.  It finally came to me that there are other people out there probably going through a lot of the same things as me- a big reason why I initially started blogging- so knew I needed to return.  PLUS, it’s time to get running again.  It’s time to get back to what I love.  I have a half-marathon training program I worked up last summer that had to get pushed to the wayside because of our move, but i’m determined to tackle it.  I want to see where it takes me. A PR?  I sure hope!
  • Another ‘me’ bullet, i’ve had another focus on my plate and that has been nutrition.  I’ve learned so much as i’ve used nutrition to better my family’s health, especially Emery, and I can’t wait to share what i’ve learned with all of you.

So, there.  I got a ‘quick’ update out of the way and am feeling excited about my return and sharing more with all of you.

I’m headed to Arizona to visit a close friend and attend a whole foods nutrition conference, so i’ll be back soon with lots to share!

Posted in Uncategorized | 1 Comment

Favorite Things: football blanket

As a Mom, I love hearing what my friends/fellow Mommies favorite things are.  Word of mouth is the best advertisement by far.  With that, I am starting a series titled, “Favorite Things” in which i’ll share with you some of my favorite things.  Don’t worry, it won’t be all baby related, i’ll include everyday things- whatever I deem worthy of sharing and wanting others to know about.

I’ll start this first edition by highlighting an item I get compliments on daily… seriously, EVERY DAY- Emery’s baby blanket!

Screen shot 2013-01-15 at 6.30.09 PMI found this blanket on etsy while I was still pregnant with Emery.  It was originally a Texas Longhorns blanket, but I contacted the shop owner, Shannon, who was more than happy to customize the football blanket to whichever team i’d like.

I noticed the minky fabric, which is incredibly soft, and knew I had to have it ASAP.  Riley has always had a special blanket and I wanted Emery to have something as well.

We introduced the adorable blanket right away and Em loved it (of course we had to get a Detroit Lions print)!

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~sound asleep, all snug and cozy~

We even had his first newborn photo shoot taken with it…

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MissMontana’s focuses solely on this football blanket (ad photo shared below) and I was so bummed when she stopped making them back in the spring, but good news (no, GREAT news)… THEY’RE BACK!!!

etsyfootballblankyAnd just in time for football season.  If you know someone having a baby and want a cute shower gift- this is it!  I actually just ordered another for a friend- I hope she doesn’t see this so it’s still a surprise!

I seriously get asked about this blanket every time we’re out- especially when dropping off or picking up Emery from my gyms daycare.

The blanket is 42×27 inches in size and runs $38.99 (selecting your favorite team is no additional cost) but I have a discount code just for you RKR readers- YAY!  Use koester10 at checkout to get 10% off.  I also suggest ‘liking’ the shops facebook page, as you may get lucky and see another discount offered there at some point.

Not only are these blankets adorable, but they’re well made and Shannon is super sweet and easy to work with.  She communicated very well through out my ordering process too, which is always an added bonus when making purchases online.

Shannon makes these herself, so don’t expect the blanket overnight, however she does have a decent turn around of just a few weeks.

Emery will be 8 months in just a week (yes, already!) and we still use this blanket everyday- it is our go to for snuggle time!

I hope you’ll check out Miss Montana’s and let me know what you think.

*the feelings shared above are purely my own and I was not paid to write this- just wanted to share with you all something that I love!*

Posted in Emery, Recommendations, reviews | Leave a comment

Oh, hey there.

I just happened to stumble across this site and realized, “Oh yea, I have a blog!”  Or not.  One thing I pride myself on is my honesty, so let’s do this.  I’ll start with some facts.

1. Life has been busy, not just busy, but hard, and for many reasons.

2. We wanted to find a bigger home by this time last year… a year too late is better than never, right?

3. Parenting can be tough, especially getting through the trials of the first 6 months of a new life.

What… are those too vague?  Let’s start over…

1. If you’re not familiar with my day to day, I work from home (I teach collegiate classes online- in Sports Management and Sport Health and Sciences degree fields) and am also a Spinning instructor (only subbing classes right now).  I also have both kids at home with me. Thank God i’m a fantastic multi-tasker.

2. We’re FINALLY moving!!!  We FINALLY (sorry for all the caps- but they’re necessary) found a new home that suits our family and will be moving in less than 2 weeks!  We’re staying in the same city we’re currently in, so luckily don’t have to worry about a distant move.

3. Emery has (thankfully) bene much healthier these last few months.  Despite this, I still feel he is slightly behind in terms of physical development.  I know, I know, all kids progress at their own pace.  I am not (too) worried, just anxious for him to reach typical milestones for his respective age.  He is very happy and smiley, so I try to be content with just that.

4. Here’s the big one, one that has probably been the largest factor in my absence.  I’ve struggled with some postpartum depression issues.  Luckily they aren’t too severe, but still, it is difficult to deal with, let alone admit to.

This last point is obviously the biggest.  I was shocked to speak with my OBGYN about this and hear just how common it is.  He said he honestly has the conversation with more than HALF of his postpartum patients EVERY DAY!  Wow.

So, why the sudden post?  I’ve meant to post… honestly.  I couldn’t tell you just how often I catch myself writing a post in my head (while running, breastfeeding, driving, making lunch and dinners, etc).  Next week starts my fall half marathon training and I want to share my progress with all of you, as this is a running blog and especially because I am taking a new (to me) approach.  Stay tuned for more!

Posted in Uncategorized | 10 Comments

Under Armour #WhatsBeautiful campaign 3.0 #IWILL #Fitfluential

I feel confident saying that there’s one word that has truly described me my entire life, and that I am sure others would use the most too.  ATHLETE.  Along with over 300 other FitFluential Ambassadors, I am part of a sponsored campaign for the Under Armour What’s Beautiful program that is out to redefine the female athlete.  It is a goal-oriented competition that encourages us all to set goals, whether on our own or as part of a team, and not only achieve them, but crush them like never before!

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Of course, a competition wouldn’t be complete without prizes and Under Armour isn’t holding back with plenty of prizes to giveaway including a grand prize trip to Costa Rica!  Um, YES, PLEASE!

My mind went wild with ideas of goals, both physical and mental, that I could set out to complete.  The beauty of this competition?  It doesn’t have to be just one!  You can sign up HERE and set as many goals (or as few) as you’d like.  Not only that, you can join teams and achieve goals as a group.

My personal goal is going to be keeping a fitness journal that I want to ultimately share with my children and hopefully future grandchildren.  My idea came about while out for a killer 4 mile run the other day.

IMG_0985Getting faster and stronger everyday.

I was thinking about how role models have changed over the years.  Growing up, my idols were MEN, like basketball superstar Michael Jordan.  The only female I really looked up to athletically was my older sister, Daune, who was a multi-sport phenom that ended up playing volleyball professionally.

I thought forward to present day and it made me so happy to think about how young girls (and boys) have professional female athletes to look up to these days.  Studs like Venus and Serena Williams, Kara Goucher, Danica Patrick and, my friend, Danielle Lawrie.

Screen shot 2013-05-10 at 10.08.31 AMRiley with professional softball pitcher, Danielle Lawrie, of the USSSA Pride.

It also made me wonder what the future of sport idols will be like and the hope that maybe, as my son grows up, he could see a female athlete as an idol and not be distracted by the fact that she is a woman.

I’m getting off on a little tangent, but the whole idea here is that I can keep a journal in which I write about my accomplishments and daily dedication to health and fitness which my kids (and possible future grandchildren) can look back on and hopefully see me as an idol.

You don’t need to be a top-level professional to be an idol to young children.  It’s about setting a good example and not relying on those in the spotlight to do it, especially as we see more and more athletes in the news for deviant behavior(s).

So, join me, won’t you?  Let’s redefine the female athlete by showing future generations how to be a positive role model.  You don’t have to keep a journal- there are a million ways to be a positive role model.  So, join me on TEAM POSITIVE ROLE MODELS and get started sharing what you’ll do to set an example.  I can’t wait to hear how you plan to make a difference!

uaThe campaign will be using the hashtags #whatsbeautiful and #IWILL as an easy way to stay involved and motivated through the 8 weeks of the competition and beyond.  I’ll be using these on my social media sites here: KoesterRuns on Twitter, KoesterRuns on instagram and KoesterRuns facebook page, so follow along and interact- let’s motivate each other!

Posted in Challenge, FitFluential | Leave a comment

Boston: today i’ll run

I’ll keep this brief, as there are enough posts about the bombings right now and, frankly, I don’t have words anyway.  I’m just disgusted.

I’m going to do the only things I can.

1. PRAY

For the city, the runners, friends, family, the entire running community, even whoever may be responsible for this, as they obviously need some help from above.

2. JOIN THE MOVEMENT

Fairly quickly yesterday I started reading about a movement to bring awareness and show support for Boston: Wear a race shirt in honor.  I can certainly do this and, thanks to Emery, have already worn 3 this morning (it’s been spit up central over here).

3. RUN! 

Because this is what we do.  Runners run.  Through all the elements, emotions, whatever life may throw our way, we just keep running.

So today, I RUN.  I will run for Boston.  I’ll cherish every step and think of all those affected along the way.  Join me?

Posted in Running | 1 Comment

Kona Kase Review

Oh man you guys.  I know I have been rather sporadic with my blogging lately, but this post simply couldn’t wait.  Have you heard of something called a Kona Kase?  No?  Well you need to keep reading, check it out and sign up for it A.S.A.P.

A Kona Kase is a way to fuel your active lifestyle with a monthly box of awesome nutritional products.  It’s simple.  You sign-up (keep reading for a 50% off code- Yes, FIFTY PERCENT), receive your Kase, then live your life… fueled by the products you receive.

As a FitFluential Ambassador I was offered the opportunity to sample a box for free.  I got my box last week and quickly tweeted a pic from my door step.

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I mean, who doesn’t love getting mail?  Side note: Riley absolutely FREAKS out when the UPS/FedEx guys pull up.  Her birthday and Christmas were way too close together, so ever since, every package delivered she thinks is a present for her.  So precious.

Anyway, as I opened my first Kase I was greeted by one of my favorite quotes:

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Under the card were some awesome goodies. See…

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In detail:

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I love that Kona Kase provides you with details on each item, including where the company is from and sometimes added discount codes as well!

Want to see some past months Kases?  Go here.

We recently realized that Emery seems to have gotten past most of his food sensitivities, thank God, cause there were certainly lots of nut products and chocolate included in the March box.  I am still taking it easy on the dairy, but peanut butter and chocolate both seem okay now- trust me, I tested them out, then double and triple checked.  Hey, I have some making up to do in the chocolate consumption category!

One thing I found really cool was that the company soon plans to have an available feature on their site where you can order more, regular size versions of the products found in your Kase.  So, if you like something, no need to go on a wild goose chase through your local shops trying to find them.  Simply go to the Kona Kase site and order.

Speaking of ordering, the Kases run $15 per month.  When you sign up you agree to be billed monthly, but can cancel anytime sans penalty.  You can also sign right back up the next month if you want, and the sign up is super simple (think enter an email address and password and you’re in).

Need some added incentive?  Sign-up through the following link and use code ‘Rogowski‘ to get 50% off your first Kase!  That is a box of premium endurance samples for just $7.50!  Plus, it gets delivered at no extra cost right to your door step.  For this busy Mom, it doesn’t get better.  I am a snacker too, so having a box on the counter that I can go to for a quick, healthy snack is much better than dealing with the temptation of candy or other sugar-packed alternatives.

So, what are you waiting for?  Go sign-up!  While the March box was provided to me free of charge, i’ve already signed up to be a regular monthly customer.  Join me!

Please do let me know if you sign-up and what you think of your first Kase.

Posted in reviews | 2 Comments

EMERY DAVIS: 2 months old!

Didn’t I just post that my sweet baby boy had hit the 1 month milestone?  Apparently another month has already flown by, as Friday marked 2 months since his birth.  You can’t argue with a calendar, so I guess I will just have to believe it.

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We had Emery’s 2 month check up today and learned that he’s growing well.  The stats:

at birth: 6 lbs, 10 oz, 18 inches

1 month: 9 lbs, 5 oz, 20 1/2 inches

2 months: 10 lbs, 3 1/2 oz, 22 inches

He falls into the 25 percentile in all stats, including head circumference.

To be honest, month 2 was rough.  We’ve found that Emery has a few food sensitivities, which took a toll on all of us (think lots of screaming that couldn’t be comforted).  I think that, after weeks of toying with my diet, we’ve finally got it figured out.  No dairy, no nuts, no soy and… NO CHOCOLATE.  Can you even imagine?  No chocolate?!?!  I kid.  I honestly can handle no chocolate, it’s the no nuts (alas, no peanut butter) that bums me out, but whatever is best for baby.  Our pediatrician mentioned that we could transition to a specialty formula if breastfeeding is too hard on me, but I think I can handle a restricted diet for the time being, especially if it is what is still best for Emery.

IMG_0429after one rough afternoon in particular, we both we’re spent.

As mentioned, I think we’ve got it figured out.  The past few days Emery has been much better and seems to be a normal happy baby, THANK GOD.  Seeing him crying out in pain and not being able to make it stop was so hard to handle.  The only thing that seemed to work was putting him into our sling and pacing around the house with him.  I didn’t mind doing this, but it certainly took a toll on my neck and shoulders, which would get quite sore by the end of the day.  Luckily he’s been sleeping well, perhaps from wearing himself out.  Man, did that ever break my heart and make me question my parenting skills.  I know it wasn’t really my fault, but I had a hard time not blaming myself.

IMG_0446finally… a happy boy!

Speaking of sleep, he tends to be out by 8pm or so and sleeps until mid-morning, waking up once for a diaper change and to feed in the middle of the night.  I don’t want to jinx us, but last night he pulled a full 12 hour stretch without waking up, much like his sister did as an infant!  Please Dear Lord, let that stick! ;)

Speaking of Riley, she has been a great big sister.  She is very loving and always wants to look at her brother.  The hard part is that she always wants to hug and kiss him too, but had a cold recently, so we’ve been in OCD overdrive with our “don’t touch him, please” talk.  I feel bad, but no one wants to deal with a sick infant on top of what we’ve already been dealing with.

I truly feel like we’ve come to a turn in the road this week and pray that this is so.  Emery seems to be doing more things, like discovering his surroundings, cooing and definitely smiling more.  He’s not the only one doing more, with the added sleep both Mommy and Daddy have found time to workout again, which brings sanity to all!

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So that’s where we are now.  Emery is 2 months and 4 days old today.  He’s in between newborn and size 1 diapers and the same goes for clothing.  He’s too tall for most newborn outfits and too small overall for 3 month gear.  He eats 7-8 times a day and doesn’t have set nap times just yet, but with me working from home it’s not a problem.

We’ll be back April 9th with our 3 month update.  I can’t wait to share with you how Emery continues to grow!

Posted in BABY NEWS, Emery | 4 Comments