Fri-yay Fun-yay!!

It's finally freaking Friday! This week was a super long one. Yesterday felt like the neverending day. Seriously. I didn't take a lunch due to leaving early to take my son to the airport to see his dad, and the day just dra g    g      e           d  .............

You know what I think is really cool? Being able to STALK my son's flight and knowing exactly where it is. I stayed up way past my bedtime waiting to make sure he made it in Chicago and found his grandparents without any issues, but that's just what we do as mom's right?

I sent Justin that picture and said "you're almost there!" and I think it kind of freaked him out because he replied "how do you even know that???".

Yes, mom's really do know everything!

I have a bunch of things from this week that I've absolutely been loving. Let's start with my FAVORITE. 

Obviously.

Now to my second favorite thing this week...

Shaun Week!!

I know I've mentioned this a million times, but it's worth mentioning again.

I'm not a beachbody coach and I'm not trying to sell you anything.

I just really love beachbody workouts. 

And these workouts so far this week are no exception. First of all, I've lost 3 pounds this week! Yes, seriously! I have been stuck at the same higher weight since about February and it's been really frustrating, but with this loss I'm almost at my lowest post-Jules weight! As I mentioned earlier, it was time for me to start being honest with myself about how much I've been eating and that's exactly what I've done this week and I'm finally seeing some results. Go figure.

I don't think the results are solely based off my eating though...these new Shaun T workouts are amazing! They are actually not quite as intense as my usual workouts and they're shorter than I'm used to (23-43 minutes), but they are seriously effective and I'm feeling the burn all over! To be fair, I've added a few extra workouts in (running, my core workout, and HIIT), but I'm seeing results doing this that I haven't seen in the past 4 months...so yeah. 

Also I love Shaun T as a trainer - there's a reason Insanity is my favorite program ever and I can see this becoming another favorite as well! 

I'm going to be deciding this weekend what my next program will be and I'm seriously considering not doing the last week of P90X next week, but I haven't made a decision yet. Don't worry, I'll let you know what I decide and I'll post my new workout schedule once I figure it out!

Since I've been really watching what I eat and drink, there are two things that have been my saving grace this week. 

That Halo Top is my favorite flavor of all of the "healthy" ice cream that's out there. I usually eat about 1/3 of a cup at the end of the night and it tides me over and keeps me from noshing on something else. Like an entire box of animal crackers. Not that I'd ever do that...this week...

And those drink mixes. Oh man. So I love water. Like I legitimately LOVE water and drink it all day long and usually don't like to drink anything else except for booze. The problem is that I was kind of reliant on drinking a glass of wine at night to wind down at the end of the day. And wine has calories. And my glass of wine was probably more like a glass and a half. So since I've been seriously cutting down on booze, I decided to try to find a substitute so I could still go through the ritual of winding down with a drink, but without the booze/calories. For awhile there we were buying Mio, but that shit has some seriously awful ingredients. All sorts of things that I can't pronounce and food dyes and pretty much all the stuff you should really try to avoid in life.

So I found these drink mixes in Walmart and they are fantastic! They're not anywhere near as sweet as most drink mixes, which I actually like since consuming too many sweet things dumbs down your tastebuds and then you require even MORE sweet things to satisfy cravings. Not even kidding, those are scientific terms and everything. These are flavored with natural ingredients, including stevia, which I know some people don't like the taste of but I don't mind. And it's dyed with beet juice and other natural dyes! The watermelon is my favorite, so I like to make a tall glass with ice and then sit and relax on the couch while sipping my hooch. 

Let me know if you check them out! Like I said, they're not as sweet as other drink mixes but by the second day you can't even tell anymore. 

The giant pile of laundry isn't really a favorite, however the two hours of Handmaid's Tale that I watched while folding the laundry is definitely a fave of the week. I think I'm 5 episodes in and let me tell you what...HOLY CRAP. I love this show and will probably watch a few episodes this weekend if I can handle them. Because it's super intense and I actually have a hard time watching more than one episode at a time because it kind of freaks me out a bit. 

In other favorite tv show news, I finished Girls last weekend. I'm sad because as cringe-worthy as the show was, I actually ended up really enjoying it! And I loved the way it ended. No spoilers here but if you're a 20 to 40-something and looking for an interesting show to watch, check it out!

Now that I'm done with that I think I might try finishing Divorce on HBO, the new season of The Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt, and I'm rewatching The Gilmore Girls because it's the best show ever. So there you have it - my tv faves of the moment!

I ran in shorts this week! I have mentioned this in the past, but one of my goals for 2017 was to run in shorts and do so comfortably. I never used to have a problem until I started gaining weight after going off Yaz a couple of years ago, and I hate when my shorts ride up when I run. I'm talking I get pissed off when it happens and stop my run and probably throw a temper tantrum. So I have just stopped wearing shorts and wear yoga pants. The problem with that is it's hot AF in Florida and running in shorts is almost a necessity. So yesterday morning I did it. It was only for 11 minutes, but I was running really fast that entire time and my shorts only made me go crazy like once. So I call that a win and a fave from the week!

Another fave from yesterday morning...

No filter needed sunrise pic for the win!

While looking through my old pictures for my blog on Wednesday I cam across this gem of an oldie but goodie. 

He wore that mustache for like a week and walked around all "excuse me, ma'am, but I mustache you a question..."

And this pic has me all sorts of excited for fall in New England! 

That was taken at our favorite place to hike in Massachusetts, Mount Tom. I've promised Justin we'll drive over to see my wifey Lucy and go hiking at Mount Tom and eat hot dogs at Nick's Nest ASAP upon our arrival in Rhode Island. I hope Jules loves hiking as much as we do!

So I sent this to my boss yesterday...

And he was totally cool with it. One of the things I'll miss most about Florida is my boss. He's very cool, very relatable, and is totally fine with me sending him a post from fuckjerry on Instagram or ridiculous Snapchats. 

I'm getting a spelling error for "relatable". And it's totally spelled right.

Get yo shit together, squarespace!!

I've had a couple of people recently make comments about my eyelashes and mascara game being strong, so I have decided to share my secret with you...

I use two different type of mascara. A volumizing one that I put on first and a lengthening one. You want to put them on without any break between them - so I put the volumizing on the right eye and follow immediately with the lengthening before doing my left eye. I love Maybelline mascara - I've even tried the super expensive Diorshow mascara and always come back to Maybelline because it's better. And I always use the regular kind - never waterproof. I hate waterproof mascara because it flakes off and looks terrible by the end of the day and I feel like it damages my lashes. 

So now you have the secret to my glorious eyelashes!

Finally I have one BIG recommendation to you and it's a huge YAY for me this week...

The Beatles XM channel is LIFE!!! My XM hasn't changed from this channel since I heard about it late last week and I don't think it will change any time in the near future. The Beatles have such fun and awesome music and I always have fun when I listen to them. Even when the song is "Yesterday". 

Question for you...

What are you doing this weekend? Do you have any fun plans? Any music or TV you can recommend to me? Don't forget it's Father's Day on Sunday!

This should be a fairly low-key weekend since Jason is working all of it but Sunday (and he's working Saturday night so he will be sleeping most of Sunday). I am going to go thrifting for winter clothes and stuff with a friend tomorrow and also plan on getting a poke bowl because I need to eat as many as possible before I leave. 

Speaking of leaving...we leave in 4 weeks...

Holy shit!!

Have a great weekend, friends!

Fri-YAY Fun Post (and am I crazy?)

Happy Friday to all of you, my friends! It's such a great day, isn't it? I love Friday. I know I've said this before, but I like Friday even more than the Saturday or Sunday because it's the day that starts the weekend and I'm always in a great mood knowing I have 2 days off coming up! 

Today's post is going to be all about the things that are making me say YAY! Some of them will be funny, some will be weird, some might be annoying for some of you, but whatever! It's my blog and I do what I want. 

Don't tell me how to live my liiiiiiiiiiiiife!! 

First and foremost, how many of you are like me and you eat well for a few days to a week and start looking at yourself like, have I lost all of the weight yet? Am I making progress? Am I skinnier yet?

This was me yesterday and I was feeling good. Like, oooooh I feel so good in this dress and my stomach is feeling flatter and YAYYYYYY. Then this morning I weigh-in and I've lost less than a pound in 2 weeks. Mother fucker. 

This weight loss stuff is so fucking frustrating and I hate how I can feel good one day and the next be so annoyed because the scale is a dumb whore. 

Am I the only one who goes through this? Am I insane? Please tell me I'm not crazy...at least not in this regard. 

Also, sorry about the language...I'll limit my French from here on out :-)

This is the other sunrise picture I took last week after my run when the sunrise was just so freaking pretty. No filter needed here, my friends!

How about some fun/ridiculous take-out pictures?

You know, these are the pictures that I deemed not worthy for other blog posts, but put in here because I have zero shame.  

Here's a series of the ridiculous faces I make when doing my pre/post-workout pictures. 

I am so photogenic. 

Speaking of photogenic...time for some BABY SELFIES!!

She gets it from her mama!

And her daddy too

I love how curly her hair is! I hope she keeps the curls and has beautiful, wavy, thick hair like her daddy. 

Just in case you're wondering where Justin is, he's been up in his room playing video games except for the times I order to him to come downstairs and hang out for an hour or two while I'm making/eating dinner or when I yell at him for not doing his chores. 

blog21.JPG

Oh how I wish I had a summer break again. I've actually thought about getting my teaching certificate and becoming a teacher, but that would be a big problem for me because:

  1. I like money and things and that would be a huge pay-cut and homie don't play that
  2. I don't really like children very much. I mean, I like my kids and my friends kids and my nieces and nephews. But that's because they're all pretty well-behaved and not total assholes and have manners. It's the asshole kids without manners that I don't like to be around and I have the feeling teachers have to deal with a lot of those. 

So no being a teacher and having a summer break for me! Womp womp!

Would you like to hear about how crappy Jules has been sleeping?

There's apparently an 18 month sleep regression and I'm 99% sure Jules is going through it right now.

On top of that, toddlers apparently start having nightmares around her age and I'm pretty sure she's having those too. They can start around 18 months or earlier if the child has experienced some sort of trauma, which the poor little girl has definitely dealt with :-( 

So what we're dealing with right now is a toddler who wakes up at least once in the middle of the night and absolutely will not let me put her down. I've tried rocking her and putting her back down in her crib and patting her back, but she's absolutely not having it. And then I work full-time and can't miss out on the limited sleep I do get, so I'm lazy and put her in my bed with me. So now she's doing this super fun thing where she wakes up between 4:00-5:00 and thrashes around and flings herself all over the bed, waking me up repeatedly until we both finally get up when I workout. Then she sits on the couch or bed while I'm working out and whines/cries through most of it. 

Needless to say, she's killing me. I am so tired and find myself getting frustrated with her and then feeling horrible since I know she's just a growing toddler and this kind of behavior is to be expected. I am hesitant to do sleep training again, since I don't want to traumatize her any further, but I don't know how much longer I can live like this. 

Do any of you have any advice? Have you gone through this and found a way to help the situation? 

"That flash is so bright mom, don't take pictures this early!!"

And to that I say, "your foot is so strong and swift when it kicks me in the head at 4:30 in the morning...stop doing that and I'll stop taking pictures"

blog4.JPG

DEAL????

(she's flailing around and fussing in that picture...send help...I'm going to lose my marbles)

You know how I have absolutely no shame and like to post horrendous pictures of myself for your enjoyment? Well here come some goodies!

I'm pretty sure I was trying to show how tired I was after my run in this picture, but all I'm getting from this picture is that I sweat a lot and make some INteresting faces. 

Of course I took more than one super unflattering pre-Jules jeans pictures! No shame in my game, folks! I need to just burn those dumb pants. BURN THEM!!!!!!!!

Except they're really nice jeans, so first I'm going to try to sell them to a thrift store. But then if they don't take them, I'm BURNING THEM!!

Speaking of flash...

That didn't work at all. But it does show that our bathroom is still pretty clean and organized and I'd like to give myself a pat on the back for that

*tries to pat self on back but remembers that I have no shoulder flexibility so I just scratch my neck instead*

Close enough.

Finally, I have some music recommendations for you guys! Do any of you even listen to any of my recommendations? If you don't, you should!

  • Reverend by Kings of Leon (late on the train for this one, but I love it!)
  • Wish I Knew You by The Revivalists
  • Slide by Calvin Harris
  • Know No Better by Major Lazer with Travis Scott
  • Rollin by Calvin Harris

For tv stuff, I'm still watching Girls and currently in the last season. I really like this show and would recommend it to everyone! Lots of boobs and butts with some "V" thrown in as well, just so you're not thrown off guard when it pops up on the screen. 

I also started watching The Handmaid's Tale last weekend and can I just say, HOLY SHIT! This show actually stresses me out so much that I can only watch one episode at a time. And tv shows never have that effect on me. But it's SO GOOD! 

Finally, the new season of Orange is the New Black was released today! Woohoo!! I will probably wait a month or two before watching, which is what I always do...once I watch it, I have to wait another freaking year for more! So I like to wait and savor knowing that it's there to watch before I binge all of the season in one weekend. Anyone else do this?

That about sums things up for me! This weekend should be fairly low-key, but busy. We're taking Justin out for dinner tonight to get some Udon/Ramen because he made the honor roll. I have a 6 mile run with some sprints at the end planned for tomorrow morning and I'm going to do it without Jules, which should make things easier...however as things always happen with running, it'll probably end up being a total shit show instead. Or it'll rain like crazy the entire time like it's been doing all week and I won't run at all - I'll run if it's raining just a little, but it has been straight pouring/storming every morning this week. Then we're having some friends over Saturday night and I may or may not be painting my kitchen table on Sunday #norestforthewicked

How about you? Do you have anything fun planned this weekend?? I hope it's a great one for you!

Weekly Workout Round-up & I Had a Moment

Happy Monday! 

I know it's been June for almost a week already, but it just hit me that it's freaking JUNE! Where did the time go? I am seriously going to be relocating to Rhode Island in less than 2 months. In fact, I have only 6 weeks of work left in Orlando and that's totally insane to me! There are so many things I still want to do before we leave! I'd like to eat at least 4 poke bowls, go to the beach twice, I need to repair my outdoor wicker furniture, I'd like to refinish my kitchen table because it looks like crap and I'd also like to reupholster my chairs because the fabric is old and gross. And then I also have to work full-time, do my wife and mom stuff, workout 6 times a week, lose this last 10 pounds, and try to sleep 8 hours a night. 

.........................................................

That's not asking much, right?? Hahahahahaaa...just writing that makes me look at myself inwardly like, you're nuts bae.

However I'm sure I can do most of what I want to do because I'm pretty dang stubborn when I want to be and right now, I want to do all the stuff and things!! Plus, my work completely covers all of the relocation expenses and movers, so we don't even need to worry about packing anything more than what we need for the few weeks we're living in corporate housing. I'm talking they come into your house and pack and move everything for us and all we have to do is clean up afterwards. And because I'm a total control-freak-planner-crazy-person, I'm pretty sure I've already found a place to live that's in the school district we want AND I've found a daycare and planned out my commute.  

So look forward to hearing more about all of this insanity that we have coming up, because it's truly going to be nuts! 

As I mentioned on Friday, I am going to go down to posting three times a week now, with more emphasis on quality posts and serious shenanigans. Thanks to everyone who provided feedback! Don't be afraid to give me more - I love hearing from you guys <3

Now onto our...

Weekly Workout Round-Up!!

I'm not going to lie - it was a pretty good week for workouts. Not a great week for eating...it wasn't really bad, just not awesome. As such, I have managed to lose 3 of the pounds I gained in the hospital, but still have 10 total to lose to get to pre-baby. and 3-5 more just because I'm fixed on the number even though I said I wouldn't be anymore. I'm not perfect and the scale and I are back in our dumb relationship. Stupid scale - I just can't quit you. I love you and I hate you at the same time!

Monday - P90X Chest, Shoulders, Triceps & Core Workout

Memorial Day workout! I pretty much woke up, got Jules some cereal to snack on and put a movie on, and then did my workout using my iPad. I also did some progress pictures because I plan on really cleaning up my diet over the next 6 weeks and I AM going to get some results. I am always so amused with how different my pictures are when they don't happen at 5 in the morning...

Tuesday - Run & Core 

Blog4.JPG

Pretty big difference between Monday's before workout picture and this one, eh?

Tuesday's run was supposed to be a half mile warm-up and 8 repeats of 1 minute race pace (8:14/mi), 1 minute recovery jog, 30 second sprint (7:00/mi) and 1 minute recovery. I ended up getting up and out of the door late so I was only able to do 5 of the repeats, but my after workout smile tells me it must have been a pretty great workout!

Wednesday - P90X Back & Biceps and Core

Another super flattering picture that I'm sharing with the masses...I don't even look like I'm awake here (I probably am not actually awake in that picture...it takes me awhile to wake-up). 

Thursday - Run, HIIT, and Core

I have a few thoughts about these pictures...

  1. That is quite the expression on my face in my before workout picture. It's like I'm giving myself a death glare or something "you will do this workout and you will enjoy it, or else!!"
  2. The insane amount of sweat on my arm in the second picture shows me that it was em effing hot outside for that run. I remember feeling like I was going to die because of the heat and this picture shows that I wasn't exaggerating because that's just not something I do. 
  3. Look at how clean the mirror is!
  4. Fakest smile ever.

Oh and Jason came home from work towards the end of this run and followed me around our neighborhood twice while yelling at me on the loudspeaker ("great job" "keep going") and playing Eye of the Tiger...so yeah...our neighbors love us. 

I did Turbofire HIIT 25 for my HIIT workout and it destroyed me in every possible way. In a good way, but I was dead afterwards. 

Friday - P90X Legs & Back and Core

More of the same...wake up, take before workout picture where I look like I'm about to cry, do workout and still laugh at Tony Horton's jokes because I'm ridiculous, rush to take beaming post-workout picture before running around like a chicken with it's head cut off to get ready and out of the door on time, get to work with just enough time to fill snapchat with some ridiculous snaps, and then head into the door to #girlboss all day. 

Saturday - Rest Day

Sunday - RUNDAY

Let me tell you about this run. First and foremost, it's the furthest I've ran this year and I swear I really am proud of it. However this ish was hard. I'm talking, it took some serious pushing on my part to keep myself going. It was so effing hot - my car said it was 86 degrees when we got back and the humidity was like a billion percent. Not even exaggerating ;-) Then I was really really tired - Jules is sleeping so poorly right now and woke me up pretty much all night long. However something else happened this weekend that messed up my mood and motivation and it trickled into my run as well...don't worry, I'm about to tell you all about it. 

As you know, we are moving to Rhode Island soon (super soon) and as such, I have started to sort through our stuff to get rid of things we don't want/need. I have a huge closet filled with clothes that I'm mostly not wearing because they're primarily pre-Jules clothes that don't fit me anymore. So Saturday night I decided it was time to sift through all of these and get rid of anything that doesn't fit me and let's just say it did not end on a happy note. 

I'm getting rid of 80% of my wardrobe.

I started with shorts/skirts/workout clothes and that wasn't a big deal. I wasn't overly attached to any of those items and didn't really mind when those didn't fit. But then I got to my jeans/pants/work dresses and let me tell you, trying to put those clothes on to see how they fit/if they fit/can I even zip them up was extremely disheartening. 

Now I know that I'm still 10-15 pounds over where I'd like to be, however I've been able to wear most of my casual pre-Jules clothes (which is mostly casual dresses and workout clothes). I've even been able to get back into some of my old work dresses as long as I don't want to breathe too deeply on the days I wear them. However jeans and my other work dresses don't lie - they don't stretch or cover up any of this extra weight I'm still carrying and to say my mood decreased with every failed item of clothing would be a bit of an understatement. 

I still have so far to go before I'm close to being back to where I was pre-baby. 

In the spirit on honesty and full disclosure, here's a super fun picture that I probably shouldn't put in a public place but I have no shame...

Blog13.JPG

Just cause it zips doesn't mean it fits. 

To be fair to myself, I could hardly wear these jeans pre-Jules except for on my super skinny days...you know, those 3-4 days a month where everything fits and your stomach is flat and you feel amazing?!? So it's not 100% fair to call these my pre-baby jeans, but they are a pair of jeans that I was able to wear for a long time that I will never wear again and it hit me hard on Saturday when the majority of my clothes ended up that way. And that sucks. I ended up putting like 12 pairs of designer jeans into that pile of "donate" clothes and didn't even try on half of the dresses because I was practically in tears and couldn't do it to myself. And that mood stuck with me for my run and I seriously beat myself up for the vast majority of the run. 

"This run would be so much easier if you weighed 15 pounds less"

"Look at how far out your stomach is sticking, uggghhhh"

"If you weren't so fat, you could wear shorts to run and wouldn't be so freaking hot"

I absolutely hate how mean I was to myself and I do realize this probably isn't normal behavior and don't worry, I don't say any of this stuff out loud for my kids to hear. It's hard to come to the realization that you just aren't anywhere near where you used to be. Luckily, I'm not completely crazy and by the time I stopped and was stretching I was able to reflect and started to feel proud of myself for finishing the run. Especially since it was such a struggle. And then I was able to start looking at myself with clarity and honesty and I realized that in order to drop this weight and get healthy I am going to need to be honest, and I haven't been. 

Just to be clear, this isn't solely about looking good and vanity - I want to be healthy and I'm not.

I've mentioned this a few times, but I've had issues with my blood sugar and my blood pressure in the past and that scares me - I'm only 34. I know that carrying around 10-15 extra pounds especially when it's primarily around my core, is extremely unhealthy. While I do love to look good and feel good about how I look, this has a lot more to do with wanting to make sure I'm there to see my kids and their kids grow up and feel good doing it.

So yesterday after my run I took some time to reflect and came up with three things I'm really going to focus on to finally start making some progress towards meeting my goals.

  • Booze - if I am being completely honest with myself, I have been drinking way too much booze. I generally go through a bottle of wine in a weekend and lately, I've also had some seriously caloric craft beers and margaritas as well. When I took my measurements on Monday, I was kind of surprised to see that I'm pretty much back to pre-baby on my legs, hips, arms, and chest; however my waist and gut are 2-3 inches more than pre-baby. I guarantee a lot of that has to do with drinking alcohol. I actually didn't drink any booze this weekend, so I'm just going to keep that up for the foreseeable future and I have the feeling I'll see some good results from that alone. 
  • Food - that whole 80/20 thing? Yeah, it's more 50/50. I do fantastic in regards to nutrition Monday-Thursday, but I blow it all to shit over the weekend by eating anything and everything. I'll find myself snacking because I'm bored or just because I want to, and I know that's another big part of what's holding me back. So it's time for me to get seriously serious about what I'm eating - I'm going to track my calories and also cut back on carbs just a little. Not a lot, because I need my carbs, but instead of eating a full cup of rice with my lunch and dinner I'm cutting back to a 1/2 cup and seeing how that goes. And while I'll still allow myself treats, I'm not going to go hog wild every weekend like I have been. A little bit of control is what I need here, and it's been a long time since I've really tried to exhibit any control over my eating. However I've done it in the past so I know I can do it, I just hate doing it. 
  • Sleep - this is a big one. I don't sleep enough and that can have a negative effect on your weight. I have a bad habit of sitting down after putting Jules to bed and cleaning up and then I'll watch tv until it's 10 or 11 and then once I do finally get to sleep, it's interrupted by my butthole toddler. So instead of vegging out for 2-3 hours every night and watching tv I'm going to make a commitment to get into bed by 8:30. This way I will be asleep by 9-9:30 and will get 7.5-8 hours of sleep. I'm sure it will still be interrupted sleep (Juuuuuuules!!!), but at least there will be more of it. 

I'm calling this the Trifecta of Truth and I'm really going to focus on doing those three things for the next 6 weeks, tracking my progress, and then I'll reevaluate from there. Luckily exercise is already such a big part of my life that I don't need to work on that as well. As usual, I'll keep you all updated on my progress including successes and failures, and in true Jamie fashion, I'll probably change my mind about stuff a million times in the process.  

Have any of you reading this had a similar struggle? Do you have any advice for me other than I need to be honest with how much I'm eating and drinking and start sleeping more? I'll probably do some posts with a full day's worth of food so you guys can tear it apart, because won't that be fun?!?

I'll be back in a day or two with something SUPER FUN! Have a fantastic day!

WIIW - Stuff & Things

Happy hump day!! It's all downhill to Friday from here! Holla!!

How's your week going so far? Mine is pretty good! I actually got a little bit of sleep last night - still not enough and Jules was up once around 1am, however it's better than it has been!

Today I'm going to do another round of What it is Wednesday and then tomorrow I'll post a deep Topic Thursday of some sort (I have to alliterate in my titles...can't help it...sorry, not sorry). 

First and foremost... 

Don't mind his goober face on the right (he was half asleep), can we marvel at how much he has grown and how BIG he is now?!? If you look at where his ears are on the door, he has seriously grown like 4 inches. I can't handle it...time can slow down now. They aren't even kidding when they say you need to cherish the time you have because it flies by - I have an 8th grader. It's been several years since he has asked me to pick him up (and since I've been able to physically hold him since he's way bigger than me now). Before I know it, he will be in college somewhere eating pizza all day every day and never putting pants on...which honestly isn't that much different than where we are now. 

So the entire point of this is, do try to cherish the time you have with your kids because it does fly by and they're all grown up before you know it. Even when they're being assholes, because let's be real...kids are assholes a lot of the time (you know it's true). 

Mirror update...it is CLEAN!

I deep cleaned the entire bathroom this weekend and organized some crap and it looks so great. And I can see myself in the mirror without any embarrassing stuff all over it. I mean, I didn't really care all that much, but it was kind of gross. 

Guess what my first thought was when I saw this picture my husband took of Jules and I playing at the splash pad? "Uuuugggghhhh...why is my stomach so pushy-outy, I look so..." and then I stopped myself and thought (1) look at how happy Jules and you both are!! (2) Jason actually took a picture of you so stop your bitching and post the damn picture!

Also my hamstrings look awesome, so shut up critical inner voice! 

More splash pad fun...

Such great pictures of all of them <3 

Jules is walking so much better - she still has a limp that I am calling her pimp walk...judge away. But she's able to pretty much run now and is obviously loving having her mobility back. 

She even got to walk her dog this weekend, which made all of us happy...except Jax. He's not really a fan, but he tolerates it. He's become even more tolerant since he's figured out Jules will feed him anything she's eating if he's patient and sits next to her. Smart dog!

No filter necessary for the sunrise during my run yesterday. Seriously makes getting up worth it!

This picture was taken on Sunday. It's super cute, right? Now scroll up and look at the first picture I posted from Justin's last day of school on Friday...same shirt. I'm 99% sure he wore it the entire weekend and I'm also 99% sure those are the same pants. 

Teenagers are so gross. 

This picture is still cute though.

Jason worked extra duty at MegaCon this weekend, which is a huge comic book/tv show/movie/nerd fest and he was able to get us some free tickets so we went for a little bit on Saturday. First off, I saw some famous people from across the room - so cool (it's the simple things for me). Also I was pretty impressed by the amount of dedication these people have for their costumes and it makes me want to come up with a cool cosplay outfit for myself...except I'm lazy and don't care enough to spend that much money on a costume/outfit. HOWEVER we do still have our Halloween costumes from this year and since we'll be up by Massachusetts I think we'll need to go to Salem in October dressed as the Sanderson sisters (from Hocus Pocus) and Marti is totally going to fly up and join us, RIGHT MARTI?!? :-)

Now I have some super fun food/music/tv/movie recommendations, because what would a WIIW post be without those??

Favorite Recipes Right Now

These firecracker meatballs are so effing good. I urge you to plan on making them asap - we've had them 2 or three weeks in a row now and I might make them next week too...that's how good they are. We usually eat them with some white rice and broccoli or whatever your veggie of choice is and I seriously struggle not to get seconds...or thirds. DO IT!

Then I made these chicken thighs last night and MAN they are good! It is a bit of work for a weekday meal, but we ended up having 4 of them leftover so they'll be great for dinner tonight too. Of course I served them with white rice and sauteed some zucchini and summer squash for sides. Yummmmmmmm. And super cheap too; since the recipe calls for skin and bone-in chicken thighs they were only $0.99/pound at Aldi. 

Favorite Songs Right Now

I'm still obsessed with that Ra Ra Riot song I talked about in an earlier post - pretty sure I listen to it every day. Then I'm also still into the Hamilton soundtrack and have been jamming to that as well (when I say jamming I mean bopping in my car with jazz hands and faking like I can sing). However I also have some new favorites that I'm just going to admit to and get it over with...

Malibu by Miley Cyrus

The Cure by Lady Gaga

Sweet Creature by Harry Styles

So yep...that pop explosion just happened. I do find that I go in waves with the music I'm listening to based on the weather/time of the year. Here's how it usually goes...

January - early March: crazy, ratchet rap music. I need to get crunk after listening to Christmas music for a month and a half or so

March - May: I always go through a Dave Matthews phase when the weather starts warming up and lots and lots of alt rock

May - August: Summer always calls for lots of pop music, classic rock, and random musicals for road trips

September - October: I usually go back to alt rock/classic rock with some seriously hard rock/metal throw in for whatever race I'm training for. I love running to Slipknot. 

November - December: All Christmas music, all the time. Not even kidding - ask my husband. He loves it. When I say I'm basic, I mean I'm basic. 

Moving onto my favorite show right now...

I realize I'm super late to the game on this, but I've been binge-watching Girls for the past month or so and I really like it. However it makes me cringe constantly. I'm pretty sure that's the entire point of the show, but I literally cringe several times each episode. 

Finally, what I'm still all about right now...

No, not my disgusting and messy car...I'm talking about the empty carseat with my purse in the back. I'm still 100% putting my purse in the back whenever I put Jules in the car so I always have to walk around and grab it. In doing so, I ensure that I will never leave her in her carseat on accident. This is super simple, but I urge you to adopt something similar if you have a kid(s) in carseats so we can prevent any further tragedies with the hot weather this summer. 

So now I want to know some stuff about you! Do you go through random phases with your music? One music I never go through phases with is country - I can't stand it. I mean, I liked the Dixie Chicks in high school like every other chick who graduated in 2001, but everything else country is so not my jam. Also have you watched Girls and does it make you cringe as much as me? Hannah is just sooooooooo cringe-y and entitled and it drives me insane. 

I hope your hump day is humptastic!!

A Birth Control Story

Like a Cinderella Story or the Princess Diaries, but about birth control and totally different. 

Happy Friday! I hope everyone had a great week - I'm sorry about not posting yesterday; the day got away from me and I just couldn't make it happen! Part of that has to do with some HUGE news that I will share as soon as I can, so keep checking in so you don't miss what's going on #deeptease

Today's post has to do with something that I am pretty passionate about, since it involves my health, and my health and longevity is obviously very important to me. Now the men reading might be like, this has nothing to do with me, but I say you're wrong and should keep reading. Let's be real here...do you have sex? Does your special lady friend/wife/baby mama use birth control (and if you don't know the answer to that question, shame on you). Or if you're a dad, you might want to keep this in mind for your daughter since it's kind of a big deal. 

And if you're a woman, it's on you to make sure you are in charge of your health. Use birth control or some sort of fertility method until you're ready to have kids, use condoms, be smart, don't ignore crazy health symptoms, etc. 

So here's my birth control story. 

I have been on some sort of birth control since I was in high school and my high school boyfriend's sister took me to Planned Parenthood because she was smart and knew we were crazy and hormonal and she didn't want a niece/nephew quite yet. I started off on the pill and that worked really well until I was 20 and got pregnant with my ex-husband (best surprise ever). 

I mean, look at how stunningly beautiful I was in high school...who wouldn't want a piece of that? (Btw...this picture is from when I was 14 and I most definitely was not doing the deed then - I'm not going to say when it actually happened, but it was definitely not at 14...way too young). 

Seriously though...black streaks in my hair, hemp necklaces...wow. 

Tangent time...how freaking cute is 1-year old Justin?? If you look under his nose, he has a scab from where he slammed his face into an end table while trying to walk. And then his right eye has a scab where he was bit by a pit bull. True story. One of my coworkers offered to babysit Justin and their dog bit him, completely unprovoked (he was just playing with toys). However this coworker also bragged on the regular about how he would "discipline" his dog by hitting her, so I don't blame the breed...I blame the moron who beats their dog. Lesson learned and luckily it was not as serious as it could have been had he been bit a bit more to the left.

Moving on...

To another tangent...can I get an "awwwwwwwww" for sweet and cute, little 18 month old Justin on a beach in Alaska? I mean, SERIOUSLY!! 

Okay, now seriously moving on and back to my story. 

After having Justin I decided to try something other than the pill, since I got pregnant while taking the pill. At first I tried the patch and I hated it - it was gross and made my skin break out and I just didn't like it. I eventually ended up getting the copper IUD and had it for approximately 4 years without any issues at all, until I had an unfortunate water skiing incident that knocked it loose. 

I'm not even kidding here guys...

No bullshit - this epic wipeout resulted in my IUD getting dislodged #naturedouche? Is that too much information? Oh well - stick with me because it's all important, I promise. 

Luckily I was actually getting ready to start my first egg donation a month after this, so I just stayed off of the birth control and got ready to pump my body full of all sorts of other hormones/medications!

Don't worry...I'll talk about my egg donation(s) experience in a later post.

While I was in the egg donation cycle, they had me take Yaz and let me tell you something...I loved Yaz. Love, love, LOVED it. My skin was clear and glowing for the first time ever and I was able to maintain my weight and I wasn't a raving lunatic once a month - it was the best. 

Unfortunately, while we were living in Massachusetts I started experiencing horrible migraines, usually for a couple of days during the week before that special time of the month. They were usually bad enough that I'd have to leave work and lay on the kitchen floor (it was cool) with the lights off until my migraine medicine kicked in. These migraines involved something called an aura - basically I would get tunnel vision and my eyesight would narrow with blurriness around the outside and lights bothered me immensely. I knew this wasn't normal or okay, so I went to my lady parts doctor who said it was probably due to my birth control and the hormones fluctuating too much and I should try a method that would keep my hormones more steady - so she gave me the Nuvaring. 

I hated it. 

Hate, hate, HATED. So I switched back to Yaz and decided I would just deal with the migraines and they're not a big deal...

Fast forward to a few years when we moved to Florida and I got a new lady parts doctor. After telling her about my migraines she said this is actually a huge concern and that she would not be willing to prescribe any combined-method birth control for me. You see, when you are taking a combined hormone birth control and you have migraines with an aura, it actually increases your risk of having a stroke. My doctor explained this is fairly new research, but she recommended I stop taking combined method birth control and switch to something that's either progestogen-only (mini-pill, the shot, the implant) or non-hormonal (copper IUD, condoms, diaphragm, rhythm method). 

I was super bummed because I actually loved taking Yaz and the positive side effects I experienced with it, but I didn't want to have a stroke (obviously) so I decided to try out the copper IUD again. 

I did not have a good experience with it the second time. I actually ended up gaining over 10 pounds that were primarily in my stomach, had horrible periods, terrible skin, and all sorts of other side effects...

We actually got married a month before I had the IUD removed and luckily I looked fantastic that day :-) Be humble, bitch sit down (it's a song...)

But I really did have a ton of issues with the IUD the second time - it had actually gotten lodged into my right ovary (which meant it hurt like a mother when they took it out) and that was causing a lot of inflammation which could be part of the reason for my bloating all the time. I also ended up getting diagnosed with PCOS around this time and was told I'd probably not be able to have any additional children naturally, which I talk more about in this post...at this point they put me on the mini-pill which is a progestogen-only pill and safe for people who suffer from migraines (especially with aura).

3 months after they told me I had PCOS and wouldn't be able to get pregnant naturally, I found out I was almost 4 months pregnant.

Needless to say, I wasn't overly worried about birth control until 8 weeks postpartum, when I started back up on the mini-pill and luckily I have not really had any issues with it. The biggest thing with the mini-pill is you have to take it at the same time every day and if you miss it by more than 3 hours, you will probably end up pregnant. Not. Even. Kidding. Also, I'd like to blame the fact that I still have baby (toddler?) weight to lose on the mini-pill, but I am capable of being honest with myself and saying that it's actually because I eat like a horse and drink too much wine/beer sometimes. I need to start practicing moderation with my moderation - don't think too hard about it and it will make sense. 

Also in regards to PCOS, I have not had any of the issues since having Jules and I do wonder if mine was just triggered by stopping birth control. I guess only time will tell - you better believe if I start experiencing weight gain, horrible skin, hair on my face, thinning hair, or any of the other myriad of symptoms I experienced after coming off Yaz, I will be going to the doctor and getting a full blood panel. 

To review all of the above:

I was not having sex at 14, I just think the picture is funny.

If you or someone you know (friend/wife/girlfriend/sister/mom) take birth control and experience migraine with aura, please urge them to discuss this with their lady parts doctor ASAP. 

The actual increase in the risk of stroke is a small one, but like I said earlier, I'm not effing around when it comes to my health. A stroke is a big, potentially fatal deal and it's not something I am okay risking, even if it means my skin sucks and I'm 10 pounds heavier (again, probably more to do with my "moderation" than anything). 

And if you are on the mini-pill like me make sure you take it at the same exact time every day or you'll get pregnant. 

Finally, I know you're all concerned about the state of my bathroom mirror. 

Yep! Still dirty...all of the other bathrooms have been cleaned, but I just haven't been able to get to our bathroom yet and my husband is working a bajillion hours so he hasn't been able to do it either. It's happening this weekend though. Hopefully (no promises). 

Other than cleaning my bathroom and folding laundry, we really don't have much planned on this glorious long weekend - Jules is doing much better so I think we might try to find a splash park somewhere? Maybe go to the beach if we decide we can handle the crowds? Grill some steaks or something on Monday?

How about you? What are your Memorial Day weekend plans? Please tell me you're having a BBQ and/or doing something super fun!

Oh and before I forget, I have an awesome deal for Le Tote! I actually kept another one of my dresses from my last box because I can't live without it, and I'm really excited about the next box that I'm getting early next week since it has THREE dresses that I saved on the app instead of the usual one or two. 

Use the code 20OFF3 to sign up and you'll get 20% off for 3 months. That's a seriously awesome deal, so if you're thinking about doing it I urge you to give it a shot for 3 months - that's only $47/month for the 4 articles of clothing, non-maternity box! And doing it for 3 months will give you a real taste for it and you can make an honest decision on whether you like it or not.

That's all I have for today - have a fantastic weekend!

Tuesday Catch-Up and Randomosity!

Happy not-Monday! It's always so much nicer when it's not a Monday, am I right? Today has me getting back into the swing of things, going back to work, and hopefully getting into a routine again. Which I think our entire family desperately needs!

Is anyone else a total creature of habit? I do love to do things spontaneously here and there - spontaneous beach trip, unplanned lobster dinner, winning the lottery (that would be nice...) - but for the most part, I do really well when I'm able to stick to my schedule.

Here's an example of my usual weekday schedule: 

5:00am - wake-up and convince myself to roll out of bed and work-out

5:30ish-6:40 - workout

6:40-8:00 - shower, get ready for work, get Jules ready for daycare, wake Justin up multiple times and remind him to shower/eat/brush his teeth/wear deodorant, run around like a chicken with its head cut off, make breakfast, run out the door 5-10 minutes behind schedule and rush to daycare/work

8:45-5:30 or so - #girlboss

6:00-7:30 - make dinner, clean up after dinner, try to play with Jules and talk to Justin before Jules has a tired-toddler melt-down, give her a bath, read story, put to bed, take a deep breath. 

8:00-9:30 - clean up more, prep meal for lunch the next day, eff around on Facebook/Snapchat/the 'gram, talk to my husband if he's not working, collapse into bed and hopefully fall asleep hardcore-style before waking up at 5 the next day and doing it all over again. 

I actually hope to do a day-in-the-life post once we get back into our normal schedule/routine and Jules is doing better, but you get the idea for now. Needless to say, being in the hospital and in and out of doctor's offices for the past week and half has really thrown our schedule for a loop. We were in the actual hospital for 3 nights and 4 days so my workouts and eating have not been where they normally would (and obviously I am okay with this since we had much more important things to worry about).

I think there are two types of people when it comes to dealing with stress - those who don't eat at all and lose weight and those who stress eat everything in sight and end up gaining weight. I'm the person who stress eats everything (especially carbs/cereal/chips) and even though the scale and I had broken up, I decided to check out the damage this morning to see where I am...let's just say that I now have 12 pounds of weight to get back down to pre-Jules weight instead of 7. Womp womp. 

Again, I'm not really super upset about it since we had so much more important things to worry about, but with my weight inching up and knowing in the back of my mind that I have issues with my blood pressure being close to the high-end of normal along with borderline pre-diabetic blood sugar, this is not really something I can just ignore. This isn't really so much about vanity and wanting to look good as it is about being healthy long-term so I can be around for a long-long time and not have any crazy health issues. So I am jumping back onto the workout train and trying to chill out on my eating/drinking and will hopefully be able to lose what I've gained in the past week and a half pretty quickly and then continue to chip away at the rest of it. Like I've said before, it's not that I'm obsessed with the number itself, but I am obsessed with getting my overall health itself back to normal/excellent. Too bad being able to do a million burpees isn't a health factor that doctor's look at because I am awesome at that. 

Moving on from that tangent, why don't we talk about other random crap that we've been up to outside of being in the hospital? The last time we really caught up was in my Fri-yay before Mother's Day post, which seems like it happened months ago!

Mother's Day weekend was a pretty nice weekend. Jules obviously wasn't feeling 100% so it was pretty low-key, but we did a lot of relaxing and goofing off, which is two of our favorite things to do!

All the cool kids wear bowls on their heads.

I obviously had to get a poke bowl...because duh. 

And I had to eat my Mother's Day cake - which I devoured over the course of the weekend. With a baby fork. While standing at the counter #icantimaginewhyicantlosethebabyweight

On actual Mother's Day, all I really wanted was to go for a run, have mimosas, take a long bath, and not have to cook any food myself. Which ended up happening pretty much 100% and it was GLORIOUS!

Jules and I woke up and went for my longest run since December. It was slow and hot and super sweaty with the humidity, but it was still a great run. 

Don't worry...Jules had sunblock slathered all over her little feet so they didn't get burnt - it was just too warm to have her in socks or cover her with a blanket and her ankle was swollen and tender at this point so I didn't want her to wear shoes or anything. Whenever we run I always give her a snack and water and she usually eats and drinks all of it and then takes a nap until we stop - easy peasy!

Then I came home to this...

And Jason made me an awesome breakfast. Then I was able to take a nice and relaxing bath before hanging out with Jules and watching movies on the couch for most of the afternoon. Finally Jason prepared some awesome steaks and crab legs for dinner that I scarfed down before meeting my BFF at the airport to bring her car seats and a stroller, since she was in town for the week on a Disney/beach vacation. 

Monday morning I woke up a bit later than usual and did my workout as planned...

Then I noticed Jules ankle was warm to the touch and we all know what happened then. 

We got home from the hospital early evening on Thursday and I did manage to fit in a couple of workouts on Friday and Sunday - just the strength training stuff; I wasn't in the mood for cardio. 

On a sidenote...here's where you can typically find our cats when they're not sleeping in a sliver of sunlight somewhere. They like to chirp at the birds/lizards that are outside on our patio. Sometimes a lizard will jump onto the door and the cats go nuts trying to chase them all over through the glass. It's insane. 

And that about sums up all of the non-illness/hospital related stuff we've been up to the past week and a half. It's not a lot, because the illness and getting Jules better has taken precedence and been at the forefront of everything, however I think I'm starting to see a light at the end of this tunnel. Jules is slowly putting more weight on her foot and was standing without support quite a bit yesterday, but she's still very timid and hesitant to take any steps. We had an appointment with the infectious disease doctor yesterday afternoon and he said it seems that she's responding to the antibiotics really well and we may even be able to stop them at two weeks instead of three, which would be amazing!

Cross your fingers that she'll be back to running around like a crazy toddler in the next couple of days! I'll be back tomorrow with another What it is Wednesday, since I actually have some fun stuff to talk about that I think you should know about!

Now I want to know, are you a stress eater and weight gainer like me, or are you one of the stress weight losers? I find that I turn to comfort food and all of the carbs whenever I am stressed. It's kind of crazy because when I look at the pictures from my workout on Monday compared to Friday, I can really tell a difference in my arm definition - I'm a lot more puffy in the pictures from Friday. But I know it will go away and I honestly just don't care that much at this point. I'm just extra swole and was carb-loading for the race...that I don't have scheduled. Or planned. It's just an excuse. Whatever. :-)

Fri-yay before Mother's Day!

Oh man...let me tell you about this morning. I could not get out of bed to get up and do my workout. So I didn't. Which would be fine if I slept well for the hour and a half extra I got in bed, but I didn't. I woke up right around when Jason got home from work and he's all "geeeeeez you look tired". And he's a smart dude, so he wouldn't just say because he's daft and doesn't realize that those words can be taken really badly if I wanted to...I really looked awful. Huge, puffy bags under my eyes and I have a constant frog in my throat that I just can't clear out. 

Then I woke up my kids and they were both terrorists this morning. Whining and complaining and slamming their cell phone on the counter...

Needless to say, I'm not feeling so hot today! Luckily I get to leave work early to go to a Mother's Day tea at Julianna's daycare (I will try to take pictures and not be the worst blogger ever, I promise!). On the flip side, I'm going into work tomorrow for a half day to get caught up on stuff. Womp womp. 

Since I'm feeling like crapola, I don't have a ton to talk about but thought I would do a quick Fr-yay with some of the things that are making me say YAYYYYYYYYY today. 

Other than the fact that it's Friday...because that always makes me say yayyy!

Jason ordered a Mother's Day cake from Julianna's daycare and then Jules decorated it. Heavy on the sprinkles...just the way I like it :-) Her decorating skills look just like mine! The food always tastes amazing, but it looks just kind of meh. 

I guess this is the opposite of a yayyy...Jules has been excessively cranky and whiny and just not feeling it every day when I pick her up at school. She actually went to bed at 6:30 last night and slept all night until I went in to get her at 7:45.

I hate having a sick child and feeling helpless to do anything :-(

I finally jumped on the bandwagon and ended up binge watching Big Little Lies in a week. So. Effing. Good. I haven't read the book, but now I want to read the book AND I really hope they put out another season because I need MORE!! So what I'm saying here is, watch this dang show because it's amazing.

Blog6.JPG

Guys...this was our Sunday dinner and it was probably my favorite meal we've had recently. All of it was good, but that chicken...holy crap. I will be making it again soon! The recipe for the gnocchi is here and the chicken is here

Just another series of amazing pre-workout pictures, courtesy of me. This was before my run on Thursday and I just didn't wanna. Obviously.

Finally, I wanted to make some music recommendations since several people have told me they like those. Here are the songs I'm really feeling right now. 

  • Moving to New York by The Wombats
  • Every Time I'm Ready to Hug by Ra Ra Riot (this is my favorite favorite favorite right now)
  • Silvia by Miike Snow

And that's really all I have for today - like I said, my brain is dunzo!

I hope everyone has a great weekend - treat your mom/wife/baby mama like gold and if you are a mama - happy Mother's Day!

Working Mom Wednesday

Happy Hump Day! It's a downhill slide to Friday from here, my friends! 

Don't forget Mother's Day this weekend!

There's still time for you to put something special together or order something nice from Amazon, so get on that! 

I do recommend you learn from me and don't send something to your mom that includes something perishable that will melt in the heat...because I live in Florida. And it's hot. Oops.

Today I thought it would be fun to talk about something near and dear to my heart, which is being a working mom. I will be completely honest in that even if I didn't need to work, I would still work. I really enjoy working - seriously! I've been working from way before it was probably legal, starting off as a babysitter for a few years before getting my first official job as a busser at a restaurant when I was 15. I worked at McDonald's for a couple of years in high school, became a server at a number of different restaurants, was in the military, was a bartender and a barista before finally joining Corporate America in June of 2010. 

When I started in my current career, my son and I were transferred from Central Illinois where we had family and friends to Western Massachusetts where we did not know a single person. I'm talking not one person. And I was a single mom, so I didn't really have any help from anyone other than my silly 6 year old. Was it hard? SURE! But I'm a firm believer that it's the hard stuff and how we deal with it that builds our character. And I might be a bit biased, but I have an AWESOME character. 

No matter how much I do enjoy working and the accomplishment I feel after a hard day of work, there are times when it is a struggle to be a working mom. Either the baby kept me up all night long or Justin is being a bunghole and got behind on homework or he's having a teenage meltdown and Jules won't let me make dinner or I just want more than a couple of minutes between when I get home from work and Jason leaves to have a conversation with my husband...I'd be lying if I told you there aren't times I wish I could be home more/all the time. This week with Jules being sick has been one of those times. Poor baby :-(

Still, I wouldn't change my working for anything and thought I'd share my top 3 tips that helps me make it work. Because let's be real, we all need help and ideas to stay afloat sometimes!

My top 3 working mom tips!

MEAL PLAN

I know I've been talking about doing a meal planning post since I started this dang blog and I still haven't done it - SORRY! Here's an abbreviated post on how I do it. 

First and foremost - plan your meals and grocery list. I do this every Saturday/Sunday and while you can use any old notebook to do it, I found this on Amazon and like it because it's a better size to keep in my purse and it's just a bit more organized than a normal notebook. 

I know some people like to do a full week's worth of meals on a Sunday and then eat them the rest of the week, but I personally think that's disgusting and can't do it. I'm sorry if you do that and can get away with it, but I can't stomach eating chicken that was prepped on a Sunday 5 days later - gross! Plus I seem to get food poisoning by just looking at something that's partially spoiled and I can't handle that ish; ain't nobody got time for that!

Instead of prepping all of my meals ahead of time, I make all of our meals as simple as possible and make them either at the time of the meal or a day or two ahead. For example, I always eat my breakfast and dinner the same day I make it (unless we're having leftover spaghetti or something) but I make my lunch the night before I plan on eating it, usually while I'm cleaning up after dinner and doing the dishes. 

I rarely if ever eat out while at work since I always prep my lunches one or two nights beforehand. I also like to try to eat different stuff for lunches since I tend to get sick of eating the same thing every single day. For example, this week I ate pulled BBQ chicken with rice and broccoli on Monday and Tuesday, leftover dinner on Wednesday (honey garlic meatballs, noodles, broccoli), and I'll have chicken sausage, rice and broccoli on Thursday and Friday. I eat a lot of chicken sausage with rice and broccoli, however Trader Joe's, Aldi, and even Walmart have an awesome variety of nitrate-free chicken sausage that doesn't have any nasty shit in it (mostly anyway) and because there's a variety of flavors I don't get sick of eating it on the regular. 

My biggest take away with meal planning is to plan all of your meals on paper and make them as simple as possible. I prefer to make things that don't require a recipe or if they do require a recipe, it's nothing crazy that I'll look at on Wednesday night and be like, NOPE and then order a pizza because I'm effing exhausted. Most Wednesday's and Thursday's we end up eating leftovers or something super easy like...you guessed it; chicken sausage :-)

I save my complicated Pinterest recipes for Sunday night dinner - I love Sunday night dinner!

Moving on to my next tip which is to...

Let shit go

Seriously. You cannot be a working mom and have junior and juniorette in ballet, baseball, basketball, and tumbling, expect them to be on the honor roll to your detriment because you have to help them with homework every night, have a clean house, make a gourmet dinner, provide homemade, organic cupcakes at all school functions, watch all of your stories on tv, drink wine like a boss with your friends, have regular sex with your spouse/SO, exercise and keep yourself fit, etc. 

You need to prioritize the stuff that is important to you and let some of that other stuff go. I refuse to have Justin in more than 1 extracurricular activity at a time - it doesn't benefit him or me to be running around from sport to activity to home for dinner at 8pm and still having 3 hours of homework to do and a messy house and I haven't even sat down yet and I'm going to lose my marbles...NOPE. I also don't try to stress myself out about cleaning because it will always be there and it will get taken care of eventually (...my effing bathroom mirror is still dirty...). I always take time for myself to get my workout in before going to work so I don't lose my mind and I try to take an hour after the kids are in bed or occupied to watch something on tv that I want to watch in complete silence. 

You may have heard this before, but you know when you're on a plane and they tell you to put your oxygen mask on before helping anyone else? This is so applicable in every day life. Take care of yourself and then worry about everyone else - in doing so you'll be better able to take care of everyone else, I promise. 

And my last and final tip...

Get new-ish clothes

I am going to include some affiliate links here, but hear me out...I'm not just trying to get you to subscribe so I get paid. I use Le Tote myself and have used it regularly since I became pregnant, and it has been a lifesaver for me. 

Full disclosure - these links are affiliate links for Le Tote. What that means to you is if you click on them and decide to subscribe, I will get a small financial thank you from Le Tote for the recommendation. I would never recommend anything to you that I myself do not use and I have been a member of Le Tote for almost 2 years now so it's obviously worth the recommendation!

I love having a pretty new outfit to wear into work. That may seem super materialistic, but the fact of the matter is, I feel better when I look better and I'm pretty sure most of you are the same way. As a manager in Corporate America, I've always made it a point to dress the part of the position I want, not the position I have. Meaning I might be a middle manager, but I like to dress like I'm a VP #respectmyauthoritah

When I found out I was pregnant with Jules and then started looking at how freaking expensive maternity clothes are, I was like...shit...leggings and tunics it is (which is totally fine if that's your deal - it's just not mine). Then I remembered reading about Le Tote and how awesome their maternity clothes were, so I decided to give them a shot.

There are 3 different options for maternity boxes:

  • 3 clothing items & 2 accessories for $69/month
  • 4 clothing items for $69/month
  • 2 clothing items & 1 accessory for $49/month 

I chose the 4 clothing items box starting when I was about 6 months pregnant, since I could no longer squeeze myself in my tight dresses and it was getting embarrassing for me and everyone else. I always got 4 dresses in each box and loved every single dress I was ever sent. Seriously, when you're huge and pregnant and get something new you can wear whenever you want, it makes a huge difference in how you feel while waddling into work while 38 weeks pregnant and miserable. 

How does it work?

You can click on the link above for a complete FAQ on the website, or read below for more from how my brain interprets it.

You sign up and fill out a style/size profile and then you are also able to go through all of the clothing available and like items you'd like to have sent to you. Next you get a text/email stating your box is ready to be styled. If you don't like what they picked for you, you can trade those items out for a different item - I would always trade out any shirts/pants/skirts for dresses since I hate wearing pants pretty much all the time, but I especially LOATHE wearing pants while pregnant. I have found that I will typically only get 1 or two of my "liked" items per tote, but some of my favorite items have actually been things that I didn't "like" - trust the process.

You'll receive your box a couple of days after it's shipped and the items are already washed and ready for you to wear! Once you're sick of wearing those items, you send them back in a bag they include in your box and then wait for your next tote. What's SUPER cool is if you really love something, you can just keep it and purchase it at a discounted price (compared to retail price).  

After having Jules I put my account on hold until I went back to work and realized I was for sure not fitting in any of my pre-baby clothes. Once I faced that harsh reality, I signed up for the classic subscription which is a bit cheaper than the maternity membership. 

  • 3 clothing items & 2 accessories for $59/month
  • 4 clothing items for $59/month
  • 2 clothing items & 1 accessory for $39/month

The past couple of totes I've gotten have included items that I never would have picked myself, other than the 1 or 2 items I had "liked", and those have ended up being some of my favorite pieces. I've branched out from just work dresses to shirts and casual dresses and I've even kept a couple of them. 

So why am I recommending you subscribe to a $60/month clothing subscription service? Because it has helped this 16 month postpartum mama who goes to work full-time, likes to look like I have my shit together, and is still between sizes feel good about herself. And that's really saying something because we all know how hard it can be sometimes to feel good about yourself, espsecially when the house is a disaster and/or the baby won't eat/sleep and/or the teenager keeps locking himself in the bathroom for way too long and you just can't even. 

Le Tote

Have any of you tried Le Tote or any of the other subscription services? I tried StitchFix a few years ago, but wasn't overly impressed. The clothes weren't great quality and were expensive for the quality (I went with the cheap box and could have gotten better stuff at Forever21, in my opinion). 

Do you have any tried and true tips for me to help me out? I'm always up for more ways to make my life easier!

See ya tomorrow!

To My Friends <3

This is an ode to my friends. 

I hope you know who you are. 

I have never been the kind of person who had a million friends. There are some people I know who seem to have 25 best friends and they had a hard time whittling their list down to 10 bridesmaids when they got married. Instead of having a million friends I've always had a pretty close-knit group of girlfriends who I completely trusted and love as a BFF. The older I get, the more I find that this is what works best for me and for my friends because I hardly have enough time for the friends I do have, let alone having a bajillion of them.

If anything, the older I get, the closer and smaller my group of friends becomes. 

I've been friends with some of you for decades...

Even when we've been separated by states/countries/oceans we always come back to exactly where we always were **++ (that's secret code language). I love how we can go months without talking and then pick up the phone or have a lunch/crazy night somewhere and pick up right where we left off. 

My friends have been there for me through all of my highs and lows and trust me when I say that there have been plenty of both. We've cried and laughed and had epic fights where we swore we would never be friends again, but here we are...

There are some friends who leave an awesome impression in your heart and you know they'd do anything for you and you'd do anything for them.

Keep those friends. 

Don't worry about the rest. 

There have been friends I've lost along the way that I regret losing - we've grown apart or maybe we didn't recover from that epic fight. There have even been friends that I have been a super shitty friend to and for that I have major regrets. If you're reading this and that's you, I'm sorry.

I sometimes wish I could be a better friend to the friends I have now, since you've been such a great friend to me. You've held my hand while skipping around high school, we've gotten in epic trouble together, we've cried over dumb boys together, we've cried over not-dumb and awful things together, we've traveled and moved across the country, and here we are...still friends. 

Just as much as you've been there for me, I hope you know that I will seriously always be there if you ever need me. Really, I mean it. 

Thank you <3

  • For being ridiculous with me - whether we're trying to ride a moped or making dumb faces or singing songs at the top of our lungs in downtown Orlando or chasing a bear out of a field or drinking wine while watching The Walking Dead on a Sunday - those are just a small portion of my favorite memories with you and I can't wait to make some more as time and funds allow (cause you know, I'm a broke-ass working mom)
  • Thank you for loving my children and never making me feel like they're a pain in the ass(even when I know they can be). Some of you have kids and some of you don't, but you're all the same in this regard. We may not be exactly the same in our parenting styles or views on kids, but I've never felt like that was an issue from you and I hope you know it's never an issue from me. Also thank you for not getting mad at me if I drop an f-bomb around your kids - I don't mean to have such a shitty mouth and I'm not perfect so sometimes they slip out. 
  • Thank you so much for any time you have babysat or offered to babysit. Being a single mom for as long as I was, I had to rely on people to babysit so I could go out sometimes and be the mother effing P.I.M.P. I was back then. And now that I'm married, I still need to date my husband whenever possible. I am so thankful to have you in my life and know that I can leave my kids with you and trust they'll be well taken care of. I promise I will do the same for you if you ever need it so don't hesitate to ask!  
  • Thank you for doing nice things for me without expecting anything back. I do nice things for people simply because I like to do nice things for people - never because I expect them to get me back or to keep a running tally. My friends are the same kind of people - sometimes they might be giving me 80% and I'm only giving 20%, but the role will be reversed eventually and I'll give them 80% whenever they need it. That's simply how these things work and when it happens organically it's a wonderful thing
  • Thank you for never making me feel bad if I forgot about you - I promise it was not intentional and not because you don't matter. It's just simply because my brain can only hold so much before I lose stuff and unfortunately I do sometimes forget plans/dates/things. These darn kids and husband of mine take precedence 99.9% of the time and I'm a worrier so I'm always worrying/thinking about them/trying to figure out ways to make sure life keeps going well. I promise I will do everything I can to make it up to you if I do ever forget anything involving you and appreciate knowing that while you might be annoyed with me now, you'll forgive me  
  • Thank you for supporting me in my choices and never making me feel bad about them, even when you know I'm wrong. You know that this has been my life to live, just as much as I know this is your life to live. As such, having you to support me and my choices without judgement means the world to me. I am so lucky to have you there to pick me up when my choices have been wrong or to celebrate with me when they've been right 

I feel that I am so blessed to have the friends that I currently have and hope that all of you reading have the same support I do.

And if not, go get you some better friends!

Husbands/boyfriends/significant others are great, but there is definitely something to be said about an old fashioned girl's night out/Frozen sing-a-long/ridiculous shenanigans with my girlfriends. 

I encourage you to go hug a friend now. Or if you're not a hugging type, send a text message. And if you really don't feel like you have any friends, subscribe and talk to me and I'll be your friend :-)

Disclaimer - there is a chance I may have forgotten some of my friends in the pictures. Again, this was not intentional and I'm sorry if you are like, WTF, JAMIE?!? Jules and her illness have sucked the life out of me over the past few days and I'm completely brain dead. Please forgive me :-)

Hand, Foot, and I'm Going to Cry

What a weekend we had in our house. Not that it was really eventful because it wasn't, it was just not a relaxing one in any way, shape, or form.

Jules is sick. There is a kid in her classroom at daycare who was diagnosed with hand, foot, and mouth and I'm pretty sure that's what she has. She's been running fevers (up to 102) on and off since Thursday afternoon and has been completely miserable, other than a few short moments of levity, pretty much all weekend. She has been extra super clingy, meaning I couldn't get anything done and I feel terrible for her because I can tell something hurts, but she can't tell me what. 

She actually woke me up around 3:30 this morning and thrashed and whined in my bed for another hour and a half before I finally gave up and went downstairs with her. I put Moana on and she watched that and fell asleep for a bit while I did some yoga and got my food ready for lunch, but then she woke up right before I was getting ready to jump into the shower. And she cried...and cried...and cried. She does not want me to put her down and she doesn't want anyone but me right now...and I have to work today. So I got ready like this.  

I'm talking I did my makeup, blow-dried my hair, and got my breakfast ready like that. And on the inside I just wanted to lay-down and cry alongside Jules because I am exhausted and my back hurts and I feel bad for her. Then Jason came home from work and took her to the doctor so I can go to work for a half-day before going home and putting my mom hat back on so he can get some sleep because he worked all night. These are the times when I hate being a working mom and wish I could just be home with my poor, sick baby. 

However I'm not even going to lie and fake like it won't be nice to not have a feverish, whiny, snotty toddler draped all over me for 4 hours today though. I hope that doesn't make me a shitty mom, but it's exhausting and it's been happening for 3 days now! 

Today's post will be a quick workout round-up from last week, since my brain is completely dunzo and I don't know that I can think of anything super clever or witty to write about. 

Monday - P90X Shoulders, Triceps & Chest

I also did my DR core workout (for diastasis recti - I posted all about it last week if you want to read more!)

Classic Jamie-before-workout-face. I feel like they're actually getting worse, but it is entertaining to me so I'm okay with it. Hopefully it entertains you guys too!

Tuesday - 32 minute run & DR core work

This was the day I was supposed to run 8 quarter mile repeats but couldn't math and ended up only doing 5 (see my blog from Tuesday for more info on that - I'm a hot mess). 

This is a pretty amazing picture too. Man, I am photogenic!

Wednesday - P90X Biceps & Back 

I also did my core workout. It's a trend - I did it every day last week except for Saturday!

Thursday - I ran real fast for 25 minutes...

25 minutes at 10K race pace (8:14/mile) with a 1/2 mile warm-up. This was super hard but I was so proud of myself once it was done and I actually hit my goal pace!

That after-picture though...man, I am trying to out-do myself with awesome pictures!

Also, my goal this week is to clean the master bathroom...including the mirrors. I can't handle the grossness anymore - like I'm almost embarrassed. Almost...not quite though.

Friday - Legs & back, extra hip strengthening workout, DR core work. 

BlogFriday.jpg

(this is the only picture I have from Friday. Gross, gross mirror!

Saturday - Rest DAY!

Peach-a-rita day?

I may have had a handful...over the course of like 5 hours. But still, a handful. It was after Jules went to bed and I was binge-watching Girls and snap-chatting all of my friends, so stop judging me!!

Sunday - RUN DAY! 

Jules woke up in a decent mood and didn't have a fever, so we went out and ran a little over 4 miles together. It was a pretty hard run - probably had more to do with the peach-a-rita's than anything, but I'm blaming it on the wind. 

LOOK!! I'm doing my old duck lips pose here! I haven't done that in forever!!

Maybe I should bring it back for good?!?

Nope...not gonna happen.

Mid-run picture, for the win!

This is apparently our new signature pose. I'm pretty sure she's telling me not to touch her with my sweaty, gross self. 

After our run we came home and I did my DR core workout and another hip workout, we had some breakfast, and then Jules laid on me and whined and thrashed around for the rest of the day. The poor thing looked like I look when I have a migraine and had a fever pretty much all day, so I gave her painkillers as directed, but she was pretty miserable all day long :-(

Did you have a better weekend than we did? Have you ever dealt with hand, foot, and mouth? How much do you LOVE my ridiculous pictures?