December 22, 2011

A week in review and other things too

*  Ummm...what training?  Ha ha!  IMAZ training was so intense and such a huge part of my life for so long that it's just really nice not to have a training plan to follow right now.  I am LOVING doing my own thing!  Plus, when I get my schedule figured out for next year I know I'll be back to training before I know it.  So, for now, I'm taking it easy and enjoying time with my family. :)

Other Things Too:

*  My secret blogger gift came in the mail!!! Woohoo!!  I have to admit that when I saw it was from Beth at SUAR, I got a little nervous...ha ha.  But, her gift was awesome!  It had lots of goodies in it plus a great ornament for my Christmas tree that says, "Do one thing every day that scares you."  LOVE IT!  Thanks Beth! :)

*  We got a pretty good snow storm today.  The snow was the kind that falls gently and peacefully and just covers everything in puffiness!  It was beautiful.

Ian drew a forest and Owen drew himself with lots of colorful trees
around him.  You gotta love kid's drawings! :) 

*  My boys did their Time Capsule sheets this week too.  Every year I have them answer some questions about things they like and draw a picture of whatever they want.  Then, we put it in the Time Capsule tube with all of the ones from years past.  We all love going through their sheets and seeing how they have changed over the years.  They are getting so big and growing up so quickly...sigh.

*  We finally  made our gingerbread house!  The boys had so much fun decorating it this year.  Plus, I think they ate enough candy to last them through the rest of the year! :)

*  Peanut Butter Gu!!  Jon [HERE] was right..this stuff is good!  I actually prefer Hammer Gels over Gu, but this Gu will definitely be part of my training/racing nutrition from now on!  YUM!!

And finally, I hope you all have a wonderful holiday weekend full of happiness, love, and peace. :)  

December 21, 2011

Humpastry Day - Apple Pie Bars

Apple Pie Bars
I know it has been a LONG time since I did a Humpastry post, but now that IMAZ is over and the holidays are upon us, I am in full on baking mode!  Woohoo!

At first I thought I would do a post about some yummy gingerbread cookies I made, but then I thought about how lately everywhere I look I see recipes for sweet treats.  So, I thought I'd do something different.  I wasn't sure what to call these, but the end result is really a cross between apple pie and apple muffins.  These are GOOD!  My husband and boys literally gobbled these up!  Oh, and did I mention that they are pretty healthy too??? :)  The flavor is really nice and subtle, but if you like more spice, feel free to do heaping measurements.  They are yummy cold or slightly warmed and make a great breakfast or snack.  I hope you enjoy them! :)

Makes 12 bars

*  2 flax eggs (2Tbl ground flax mixed with 6Tbl water)
*  3/4C brown sugar
*  1/4C raw sugar
*  3/4C applesauce, unsweetened
*  3 apples, cored, peeled, and diced (you can make your pieces bigger or smaller depending on what you like)
*  1C rolled oats (not quick cook)
*  1C whole wheat flour
*  1C all purpose flour
*  1/2tsp. salt
*  1tsp. baking powder
*  1tsp. baking soda
*  2tsp. cinnamon (plus more for dusting the apples)
*  1/2tsp. nutmeg
*  1tsp. vanilla extract

1.  Preheat oven to 350 degrees.
2.  Lightly grease a 9x13" pan and set aside.
3.  Make your flax eggs and set aside until thickened ~5min.
4.  Peel, core, and chop your apples.  Having one of these makes it so much easier.
Place them in a bowl and toss with some cinnamon.
5.  In a mixer bowl, cream the applesauce, sugar, and flax eggs.
6.  Add in the vanilla extract.
7.  In another bowl mix the flours, salt, baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon, nutmeg, and oats.
8.  Slowly add the flour mixture into the wet and mix until just blended.
9.  Fold in the apples.
10.  Spread the batter into the pan and bake for ~40-45min. or until a knife comes out clean.
11.  Let cool, then cut into 12 bars.
12.  Enjoy! :)

December 19, 2011

Christmas Carol 10k Race Report

So, I don't know what made me register for this race, but I guess I've just been having a hard time finding the motivation to start working out again after IMAZ and I thought this would be a good kick start!

This was an inaugural race at City Park, one of my favorite places to race, and it had a 5k and 10k option.  I have done sooo many 5k races that I just finally decided to do the 10k.  I have actually never really done a 10k race (except a local race in college), so I was kind of excited about it.  But, the fact that I had only ran twice since IMAZ added a little bit of nervousness too!

The temp. on race morning was supposed to be in the low 30s, so my husband decided to stay home with our boys.  Because I didn't know how long this race would take me, this was the best option because I didn't want my boys out in the freezing temps. for a long period of time.

So, I headed to the race dressed in my warmest gear.
I love how the stripes match  my shoes..ha ha!
I had to park about 1/2M away, so walking to the start was COLD, COLD, COLD!!  I could see my breath and wondered why in the world I had decided to run a race in these temps!

I got to the start, and was looking for the packet pick-up, when I saw this gigantic line of people waiting to pick up their bibs.  Are you kidding me??  At this point, it was 8:45 and the race was scheduled to start at 9A, so I jumped in line and waited.  It took about 15min. for me to get my bib.  It turns out there was only 1 person handing out bibs for the 10k race.  I felt really bad for that volunteer, but really it's the race director's fault.  That was just ridiculous!  

So, I pinned on my bib, did some business at the port-a-potty, then went to line up at the start.  They ended up starting the race a little late because of the line, but I seriously waited in line for ~1 minute before the gun went off!  YIKES!  This wasn't a chip timed event, so it took me awhile to get to the start line with all the people/5k walkers (we all started together).

Within the first 100 feet, it started to thin out and I quickly found my groove.  Before I left for the race my husband said, "You better run sub 8 miles!" He was joking of course, but a little voice in my head said, "What if??"

So, here I was, running in the cold, and I felt AWESOME!  My legs felt fast!  I looked at my Garmin and I was running around 7:30.  At first I thought, "You better slow down!"  But then, something inside of me changed and I started believing that I COULD keep up a sub 8:00 pace and I wanted to try and give this race my all!

The miles kept clicking by and I couldn't believe how great I felt.  I was passing people who started the 10k really fast, then before I knew it, I was passing people who were walking the 5k course (the 10k course was 2 loops of the 5k course).  I was working hard to keep up  my pace, but I was having a BLAST at the same time!

Finally, I hit mile 5.  There were these 3 guys running in front of me who had been ahead of me the entire race.  They were losing steam though, and before I knew it, I was right next to them.  Well, I don't think they liked the fact that a girl was going to pass them, because all 3 of them totally picked up the pace and sprinted really fast the last 1/2M to the finish.  I couldn't keep up with them, but part of me wished I would have been able to match their speed and pass them at the end...ha ha! :)

I reached the finish line and saw a 47:50 on the time clock!  Woohoo!!

Even though I was freezing, and my legs were killing me at the end,  I am sooo glad I did this race!  I pushed myself, set a PR for a 10k race, and had fun while doing it!  I can't ask for a better race than that! :)

(I'm going off my Garmin, because it wasn't chip timed and I had to wait awhile to get to the start line.)
Time: 47:40
Pace: 7:41/mile   WOOHOO! :)
30-39AG Place: 6/65
Overall: 39/264  

December 16, 2011

Holiday Fun!

IN PICTURES (mostly)! :)

Our Christmas Tree!  Some of you already saw this on FB, but that's o-kay!
We went to visit my sister/brother-n-law who live up near Salida, CO and they had to clear some big trees out from around their property.  SO, they cut this one down.  Of course, it was about 20 feet tall, but we were able to cut it to the perfect size! :)
It's not as full as traditional Christmas trees, but I just love it!

AND, on one of the branches sits my new ornament for the year!!  Instead of buying a pre-made one, which by the way is outrageously expensive, I just decided to make my own!  One plastic bulb and a sharpie paint pen make a great  homemade ornament...don't you think?
The other side has the date and my time for IMAZ on it!

So, I don't know if all you moms and dads out there know about this, but every month the Lego stores have a free mini figure build.  Well, the December one was this nutcracker.  I was excited to take my boys, but had no idea what to expect.  The event started at 5pm and we got there around 4:35, thinking that would be plenty early!  NO!!  There were already over 100 kids/families in line and IT WAS CRAZY!  There was no way that we could wait in line for 2hrs, so unfortunately we had to leave.  My oldest started crying because he was just really looking forward to doing it, and I felt sooo sad for him.
SO, what did I do?

As soon as we got home, I set the boys up with a game and I snuck into their room.  I spent probably 40min. in there trying to find the right pieces to make my own version of it!

Obviously, it's not the same, but it's not bad...right??!!  I think I did pretty good considering I didn't have all the right pieces.  AND, the best part, my boys absolutely loved it and thought it was the coolest thing!  :)

Mmmm...Frambozen!  My husband and I wait all year for this to come out during the winter months because it is so good!  I am not a beer drinker, but I'll drink this!

Taking our boys to see Santa! :)

Our "Elf on the Shelf," or Candy Cane as we call him in our house!  Seriously, whoever came up with this idea is a genius!  Plus, it's fun for our boys to try and find him every morning (like hanging from a random hook on the ceiling!) ha ha!

I hope you all have a great weekend!  :)

December 11, 2011

One More IMAZ Post!

O-kay, I know I've already done A LOT of IMAZ posts, but I wanted to do one more.  I thought I would do a bullet post about some of the things that made my experience so awesome! Oh, and I promise it's a short one (unlike my race recaps..ha ha)!  So, here ya go! :)

*  I told my husband that I would love it if everyone that came to cheer me on had on a bright colored t-shirt during my race so I would be able to pick them out of the mass of spectators.  So, a couple of days before my race, my husband and I went to JoAnn, bought bright green t-shirts for my entire family for about $2 each and fabric markers.  Here are the results!!

These are the shirts my boys and husband did.  Of course my boys only wanted to write their names and draw animal pictures..ha ha!  But, I LOVED my husband's shirt!

This is a close up of the design my husband did!  I don't know if you can see my eyes on the swim picture, but I look pretty terrified (exactly how I felt about it!)

These are the shirts my sister did for herself, her husband, and my 2 nephews!  LOVE THEM!!

Yes, my sister calls me pumpa..hence the "Go Auntie Pumpa!"

A close up of the design she did on her shirt!  How awesome is that?!!  :)

I think they stand out...don't you??  Seriously, the bright green shirts were such a great idea!  Every time I finished a loop on the bike I saw the shirts, every time I started a new loop on the run, I saw the was AWESOME!!

*  Fun things I picked up at the Ironman store!  Seriously, it was a mad house in that tent, but I came out with some cute shirts!

*  Adding new magnets to my car!  Yes, I'm one of THOSE people! :)

*  Getting this finisher medal!  LOVE IT!

*  Spending some quality time with my parents!  We only see each other 1-2 times a year, so it was nice to have this time with them.

Watching all of the cousins playing together!  They played with that nerf football for hours!  The temp. in AZ was in the mid 70s, so it was perfect for being outside!!

*  Going on a hike with our boys and spending time with my sister!

Pies, pies, and more pies!!  I made the one on the bottom.  I called it "Pumpkin Pie with a Chocolate Twist!"  Notice that it has more gone than the others..ha ha!  AND, we ate them with my mom's homemade whip cream!  YUM!

We actually used this picture on our Christmas cards this year! :)

* Making new memories with our boys!  They had a great vacation and really enjoyed spending time with their grandparents, aunts & uncles, and cousins.  Being there 2 weeks was kind of a lot, but it was great for them, which is what really matters!

December 5, 2011

Ironman Arizona - The Run

*Note: This is the longest post yet!  I tried to keep it short, but I just couldn't!  :)

For those of you doing IMAZ in the future, here's the low down on the course.
The run course consists of 3 loops of a little over 8 miles each.  The loop makes kind of a crazy figure 8 that goes up and down the tempe bike path and up, over, and down 3 bridges.  While many people say this course is pretty flat, I would totally disagree.  To me, for the most part, it felt like I was either going up or down with a few flat parts in between.  While the "up" parts are not major hills (with the exception of Curry Rd), they still take a toll on your legs and you can definitely feel them, especially towards the end.

The Run:

I headed out of the change tent and ran to the run start and right away the crowds were amazing!  Everyone was ringing cowbells and cheering and it was just a great way to start the run.  As I headed out, I could hear people shouting my name and it took me just a split second to realize that my entire family was straight ahead!  My eyes focused on one person mom.

I haven't mentioned this on my blog yet, but my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer this summer.  After having a double mastectomy a month ago, she started her FIRST chemo treatment on the Tuesday before my race.  She had a really difficult time with the chemo and actually spent 4 days in bed battling nausea and being sick.  It was really hard watching my mom go through that, especially since there was nothing we could really do for her.

So...when I saw my mom, standing there with my family, cheering me on, I immediately started crying (I told you I was a complete mess this entire race!)!  I ran right up to her and said, "I can't believe you came," and gave her the biggest hug I could without hurting her!  Then, I hugged my sisters, my dad, my niece, and my nephews, and tried to wipe the tears away from my eyes, but they just kept coming.  Then, my youngest sister hugged me again and said, "You can do this!  This is what you do!  Erik and your boys are right up ahead!"  I hadn't seen my husband since the swim start so I was excited that he was here with my boys and I took off running!

I was scanning the crowd and pretty soon I saw them!!!
 I started crying again because I was just so happy to see them!  My boys ran up to me and I gave them the biggest hugs I could! Then, I kissed and hugged my husband and took off again!

I stole this pic from her blog.  You can read her post about it HERE!
The first part of the loop consists of a steady incline up to Priest Dr, where you turn right, cross over the bridge, and head back on the other side of the lake.  As I was coming up to the bridge, I saw non other than the famous EMZ.  She was saying, "Aimee, it's me Emily!"  I thought that was so cute because I totally recognized her before she even said anything!  I was so excited to see her in person that I went up to her and gave her a hug (Sorry Emily if I got smelly sweat on you!)

Then, I saw Peanut next to her and gave her a hug too!  :)

So, I was running along when I looked at my Garmin and realized I was running at a pretty fast pace.  I slowed it down and told myself to take it easy because I still had a LONG way to go.  My plan was to get water at every aid station and sip on my EFS every other aid station.  Well, when I took one sip of my EFS I immediately regretted it.  It tasted so gross and my stomach kind of grumbled when I drank it so I knew I needed a new plan.

As I was running, I was in complete shock about how great I felt and just hoped that it would continue.  I was taking in water and my endurolytes, and I took my first gel at the 45min. mark.  As I choked it down, I almost immediately threw it back up!  OH NO!  I knew that was not a good sign, but hoped that it would pass.  Then, about a mile later, my stomach started really hurting.  I made it to an aid station and immediately went to a port-a-potty.  I ended up being in there for about kidding.  My stomach was so upset and it was not pretty!  After I was done, I felt much better, walked to get some water, and tried to run again.  Immediately my legs started screaming at me!  It was like they were saying, "Hey, we just got a break and you want us to run again??"  Seriously, my legs felt like they were on fire and they HURT so bad!  My calves, my hamstrings, my quads all burned and I had never felt anything like it.  I started walking the "ups" and trying to figure out what to do.  My running pace had slowed significantly and I started getting really hot.  I took off my arm warmers, stuffed them in my tri pocket, and just kept plugging away at the miles.  Then, before I knew it, I was ready to start my 2nd loop!

My dad, niece, and sisters waiting for me to pass by

As I ran by the transition area, my family was once again there, cheering me on!  Seeing them again gave me a complete energy boost!  My mom wasn't there this time because she needed to go home and rest, but it was great to see everyone else.  I told them I didn't feel good and my stomach hurt, and they said, "That's alright, you're doing great!"  Even though I knew I wasn't doing "great," it was nice to have their words of encouragement!

As I ran further down the path I saw my husband and boys again!  I told my husband how I was feeling and he said something like, "It's o-kay, this is what it's all about!  You can do it!"
It was so awesome to have them there, supporting me along the way.  Honestly, I don't know what I would have done without them there.  Seeing them after every loop was just amazing.  And for some reason, when I would see them, the pain I was feeling would just go away...even if it was just for a couple of minutes! :)

The second loop was much harder for me than the first.  I really was NOT feeling good and I had no idea what to do about it.  The only thing I could think of was that swallowing all the Tempe Town Lake water was reeking havoc on my stomach.  At the next aid station I decided to try eating a banana.  A short wile later,  my legs started feeling better and I got excited!  BUT, it was short lived because my stomach was not happy with me.  I started getting really nauseous and I started getting that metallic, sour taste in my mouth and had to walk.  I was hoping that it would pass, but unfortunately it didn't.  As I was crossing over the Mill Ave. bridge I got the urge to throw up.  I tried to hold it until I was over the bridge, because it was a narrow walkway, but I just couldn't.  Without going into too much detail, that banana came straight back up, and pretty soon my stomach was completely empty.  Amazingly, I felt MUCH better after I threw up and I started running again!

My stomach continued to feel a little wonky, but I was happy to be running again.  Granted, I was running pretty slowly, but I was running!!  

Here's a funny thing about this picture.  The guy behind me, in the blue suit, was with me throughout the first 2 loops.  I have no idea how he did an IM in that suit, but he did and it is pretty amazing!
After I threw up, I passed him on the course and he said, "There you go pink!  Way to get back in the game!"  He must have seen me throwing up on the course.  I did a little fist pump and just kept going.

From that point on, I just tried to stay at a level where I wouldn't throw up again.  I tried to drink water, but even that wasn't settling well in my stomach.  I would run when I could, then walk when I needed to.  I kept getting cold, then hot, then cold, then hot again.  I was constantly taking off and putting on my arm warmers.  I felt like you do when you have the flu with a fever and how one minute you're shivering and the next you're burning up.  It was really, really annoying!

Finally, I made it to the beginning of the 3rd loop.

 ONE LOOP TO GO!!  I was sooo excited to finally be on my 3rd loop!!  As I passed by transition again, I heard someone say, "Go Aimee, I tri to be me!"  I turned around and tried to see who said it, but I couldn't tell who it was, so I kept going.  It definitely made me smile though! :)  Then, I saw my two sisters sitting on the sidelines and they were like, "Aimee, Aimee,  you're  here!"  I knew I had taken a long time to do that last loop, longer than my family probably imagined, so I thought that's what they were talking about.  I ran up to them and told them I had thrown up and I just didn't feel good.  They just kept saying, "We know, it's o-kay, you're almost finished!"  I asked them if everyone else had left and gone to dinner and they said yes, but that they'd be back for the finish.  Because I wasn't using them and was sick of carrying them around, I gave my handheld water bottle and all my Hammer gels to my sister, then headed off for my last lap.

**As a side note, it turns out that there was some kind of delay on for tracking and my family didn't know where I was.  They thought I had either dropped out or was in the medical tent.  Apparently, my dad tried to find me at the med tent and my husband had left to head to his parents house to drop off our boys so he could come back and find me.  They were all really worried about me.  So, when my sisters saw me, that's why they were soo excited!!  After I left, they called my husband and my family and told them I had just started my 3rd loop.  Everyone was so happy that I was o-kay!  

A couple of miles into the last loop I had to pull over again to throw up.  My stomach was pretty much empty at this point, so I started dry heaving.  It was so painful and I was just so tired of feeling sick.  Another girl came up to me and said, "How ya doing mama?"  I mumbled something like, "Not so good."  Then, she proceeded to tell me that she had just thrown up too.  She asked if I wanted to walk with her for awhile and I said, "Yes."  So, we walked and talked.  She told me this was her 7th IM, but that it would probably be her last.  I told her this was my first and then she said something that stuck with me.  She said, "Enjoy that finish shoot.  My first IM I just ran right through and I didn't get to really experience it, so take it all in and just enjoy it!"  I made a silent promise to myself that no matter what, I would take her advice.

About a mile later, I started feeling better and told her I was going to try and run.  I thanked her for helping me through that rough patch and wished her luck on her finish.    During this time, just like with the bike, I stopped looking at my Garmin completely.  At this point in the race I did not even care about my time.  I had no idea how long I had been out there and that was o-kay with me.  All that mattered was that I kept moving forward towards the finish.  I KNEW I would be an Ironman that night, even if it wasn't the way I had hoped it would happen.

So, for the entire last loop, I vowed to thank as many of the volunteers as I could.  The volunteers are truly amazing.  They are there...all day and night...helping us along the way.  At several aid stations, there were girls that seemed to know who I was.  Every time I walked by, they would say, "Good job Aimee" or "I'm proud of you!"  It was nice to have some personal encouragement out there.  So, thanks if you're reading this and you were one of the ones that cheered me on out there! :)

There was one particular aid station that had lots of people dressed in drag and there was this guy that was dancing and cheering everyone on.  His energy and encouragement was amazing and I looked forward to seeing him every loop.  At the last loop, I walked right up to him, grabbed his hand, and said, "Thank you for being out here for us.  You are amazing and it really means a lot!"  He said, "No, YOU are amazing!  You're the one out here doing it!  You can do this and you WILL be an Ironman!"  It was awesome!

Giving my boys one last hug before the finish!

Right after that aid station, I was greeted by the biggest surprise!  My husband, boys, dad, and sisters had crossed over to the other side to cheer me on for the last half of the loop.  IT WAS AWESOME and just what I needed!!  I gave my boys the biggest hugs and told them that I would see them again soon!

I had 4 miles to go and I wanted to try and run as much of it as I could without getting sick again.  Then, before I knew it, I only had 1 mile to go.  I could not believe it!  I got so happy and knew that with every step forward it was one step closer to the finish.  At the last aid station, I stopped to give a young boy, who had been volunteering there all day, my glow necklace.  I didn't need it anymore and thought he should have it!  It was fun to do that and he had a huge smile on his face as I ran away!  

With 1/2M to go, I saw Kathleen walking up ahead of me.  I was soo excited to see her because I hadn't seen her all day and was wondering how she was doing!  I ran up to her and said, "Kathleen!!"  It turns out she was on her 2nd loop!  We walked and talked for a couple of minutes and I said something like, "We're doing it!  We're going to finish!"  It was really neat for me to share that moment with her!  I wished her luck with her last loop and headed to the finish!

Finally, I came to the point where you can either go straight to do another loop, or turn left towards the finish.  The same guy that had been at that junction all day was still there!  I had given him a high-five every time I passed him to start a new loop and this time I went up to him, gave him a huge high-five, and said, "I finally get to go left! Yay!"  He said, "Right on!  Woohoo!" It was hilarious, because woohoo is something I say all of the time! :)

As I turned left, I suddenly realized how dark it was.  I ran through a parking lot and there was no one around.  It was actually quiet and I LOVED it because it gave me a chance to really absorb the fact that I WAS FINISHING my first Ironman!!  I ran about 100 more yards, and the finisher shoot came into view!  I remembered what the girl had told me about taking it all in and enjoying the moment and that is just what I did.

IT WAS AMAZING!  Everything that you read and hear about the finisher shoot is true.  It is loud, it is exciting, it is emotional, and it is amazing!  I heard my sisters and dad cheering for me and gave them high-fives as I passed!  Then, as I ran through the shoot I gave EVERYONE high-fives that had their hands out.
My husband took this picture.  I know it's blurry, but I love it! 
Then, I heard it..."A teacher from Denver, Colorado.  Aimee Youngblood, YOU ARE AN IRONMAN!"

I DID IT!  I really did it!  I finished happy and did not need to go to the medical tent...that was my goal and I met it!  I was grabbed by some catchers, wrapped in a blanket, and brought to the line to get my finisher picture.  

It's true what they say about the finish too..after you cross that finish line, you don't feel anything but pure JOY.  My stomach didn't hurt, my legs didn't hurt, and I just felt so completely happy!!  I could not believe that I just finished an IRONMAN!!

My younger sister, me, my older sister!
These are my biggest supporters!  I know it was a VERY long day for them out there, but seeing them on the course meant more to me than they will ever know.  My husband is truly amazing and I COULD NOT have done this without him.  He is my support, my rock, an amazing father to our children, and the love of my life. Words cannot express how grateful I am to have him in my life.  And, I cannot thank him enough for all he has sacrificed and done for me in order to complete this crazy IM adventure.

My sisters were there ALL day cheering me on!  Their support and encouragement throughout the day was just amazing and they gave me the "pick me ups" I needed to keep going!  Thank you, thank you, thank you!

I also want to thank all of you out there in bloggy land for your support, advice, and encouragement throughout my journey.  And, after the race I was taken aback by all of your emails and FB posts congratulating me.  It was overwhelming and just awesome!  Thank you! :)

So, I'm not going to say that I'll "never" do another Ironman, but it will definitely be AWHILE before I take one on again.  The training and time commitment is just a lot, and it took away so much time from my family.  BUT, the experience was absolutely amazing!!  Although the day didn't quite go as I would have liked, I met my goal and I did it!!  I finished!!!  And, knowing that I did something millions of people will never even attempt to do feels AWESOME!!
Out of all the shirts I got for this race, this one is by far the best! :)