Wednesday, February 29, 2012

simple starfish winner

Yesterday I recieved something very fun in my mailbox. A couple of weeks ago I entered a contest on one of my favorite blogs.

LAYLA over at THE LETTERED COTTAGE you can read her blog here:

Layla featured an amazing jewelry designer that offers something different. It is all customizable jewelry.  The company is called {simple starfish} and here is a little about what Christine, the designer, offers.

"{simple starfish} inspired by sun, sand and sea and the relaxed feeling of the beach.  Our goal is to create something unique and custom that you love!  Our beautiful, affordable personalized pieces of handmade, hand stamped jewelry are designs that you can wear each and every day while expressing your own unique personality.  We create one of a kind mommy necklaces so you can keep your little ones close to your heart.  But it's not just mommy necklaces or mothers necklaces, we also create grandma necklaces, aunt necklaces, sister necklaces, starfish jewelry and much much more."



I have been wanting to buy one for awhile now and just kept procrastinating. So when I saw that Layla was giving one away, I entered. I never in a million years thought I would win. She has like a ba zillion readers so I knew my chances were slim. A few days later I recieved an email from my friend Danielle all the way from Montana saying that she saw that I won the necklace. I was in shock, then freaked out, then couldn't find where it said I won, then was second guessing my friend...sorry Danielle, then found my name, then freaked out some more! WHOO HOO!! I love winning things. This was an amzing gift that I got to give to myself. So then Christine from {simple starfish} customized my winning necklace and sent it my way!


Isn't it great! I love it so much. So much of my jewelry is big flashy and sometimes a little obnoxious, which is the way I like it! But I was wanting something simple that I could wear with jeans and tshirt, yet I wanted it to make a statement. This necklace does just that.

Monday, February 27, 2012

Weekly Weigh In

Let me start of by saying I'm sick. Not the throwing up that could actually help me lose weight, but the I'm achy all over and can still feed my appetite kind!

This week has been a very frustrating one to say the least. I have fluctuated my weight between a couple of pounds and as of this morning I weighed in at 186.2. It's a plus that I almost lost another pound when this week was over. Seeing the scale go up this week then having to lose what I already lost and then some, is the frustrating part!

I have been back at eating my normal 1500 calories a day and not calculating my workouts. So I am consuming around 1200 a day is my guess. I just ordered a pedometer to help me know a more exact number of calories that I am loosing each day. The Omron HJ-203 Pedometer with Activity Tracker from Amazon.

It was only $12.50 with free shipping. I got it in black which is the cheapest, but if you want to spend a little bit more you can get a pink, yellow, or purple one. I didn't want to spend a lot of money because I want to try it out first. If I use it and see that I could benefit from a better one, then I will beg my hubby for this one that I have had my eye on.

This beauty is a brand new pedometer/heart rate monitor. The Fitbit Ultra Wireless Activity Plus Sleep Tracker by Fitbit. This is also $99. So you can see why the husband said no (at first).

My week looked great despite the .8
of a pound weight loss.

Sunday~ ran my week 4 day 3 on the couch to 5K app
Monday~ Kettle Bell workout
Tuesday~ ran 2 miles
Wednesday~ Kettle Bell workout
Thursday~ No workout
Friday~ Ran week 5 day 1 on the couch to 5K app
Saturday~ Boot camp
Sunday~ Rested bc of sickness :(

I want to take good care of my body so I will take off a few days of working out. Maybe that will shock my body and loose maybe 2 pounds this week.

I also found an awesome dinner recipe that I tried last night and it delicious, so I wanted to share!

  • 1 tablespoon olive oil
  • 1/2 cup coarsely chopped red onion
  • 2 1/2 teaspoons chili powder, divided
  • 1 bag (14 ounces) frozen corn kernels
  • 1 cup frozen mixed bell pepper strips
  • 1/4 cup chopped cilantro + 4 sprigs for garnish
  • 4 boneless, skinless salmon fillets (4 ounces), about 1" thick (I used Tilapia)
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/4 teaspoon ground black pepper


    1.Preheat the oven to 450ºF.
    2.Heat the oil over medium heat in a large ovenproof skillet or shallow stovetop-to-oven baking dish. Add the onion and cook, stirring, for 2 minutes.
    3.Add 1 1/2 teaspoons of the chili powder and stir to blend. Add the corn and bell pepper strips. Cook over medium heat, stirring, for about 3 minutes, or until the vegetables are no longer icy. Stir in the chopped cilantro. Spread the vegetables in an even layer.
    4.Sprinkle the remaining 1 teaspoon chili powder evenly on the fish. Place, chili side up, on the vegetables. Sprinkle with the salt and pepper.
    5. Place in the oven and roast for about 12 minutes, or until the fish is opaque. Serve each fillet on a bed of vegetables and garnish with a cilantro sprig.
    Click here to find out more! 
    It was very delicious and approved by Noah!

    Something new that is starting this week is a Biggest Loser contest between some friends. I am excited to get some support and hopefully win some money while I am losing weight. I figure I will NEVER gain this weight again, therefore never have an opportunity to be apart of a contest like this again. So why not join one. I couldn't find one that I could join so I started one. I will fill you in next week with more details.

    Sunday, February 26, 2012

    A little idea for little money

    My daughter has an abundance of headbands and it seems that we lose one each week. They have been getting stepped on and broken mainly because she hasn't been putting them away, but also because she really didn't have space in the bathroom drawer anymore. I needed to come up with an idea to help her keep the organized. So I grabbed an empty oatmeal container.

    I grabbed some decorative scrapbook paper and glue to cover the container, and got this.

    It even makes a place to put hair brushes.

    The outcome. Super simple, but huge space saver.


    Tuesday, February 21, 2012

    Soccer has begun!

    This past weekend Little T officially started her soccer tournament season with one of the largest tournaments that we have ever attended. Noah is the assistant coach this year to her team and we are very excited to see how they do this year.

    Even my mom and my favorite little monkey came out to watch.

    Each child on the team has to sit out one tournament because of the number of girls on the team. We decided to have Little T sit first. We then got a call from the U14 coach asking if she could play for his team. What an honor! I try very hard to be humble. Sometimes it is just not in my personality....and this weekend was no different. I was a PROUD MOMMA!

    She just turned 12 and played this weekend with girls that are 13-14 some going on 15! She played her little heart out. I think she was a little intimidated at first, but then found the aggressive part of her that I know she has. They played her as a mid fielder for the first two games and sat her one quarter. Then the rest of the games she played center forward, all four quarters.

    This was the girls warming up.

    The coach asked if he could have her for the rest of the season, but with Noah coaching her actual team; we had to decline. It definitely pulls on my heartstrings though. I think most parents think their children are amazing at whatever activity they do. I am no different. I think she has a natural talent for playing soccer. Will she continue to do it in life? Not sure. For now I am enjoying the moment of watching her shine.

    GAME STATS: 0-0

    Monday, February 20, 2012

    Week End Weigh In

    I feel so out of the loop. Well only when it pertains to the blogging/facebook world! I have taken a break from logging on everyday and reading through some of my favorite blogs and I took facebook off of my phone so I wouldn't check I don't know....30 times a day. I know, a huge addiction that was taking over my life. So instead this past week I spent a lot of time doing something I never thought I would actually fall in love with. Hopefully knowing that this is my weekly check in with my favorite blog reading friends, you would know it has to pertain to losing weight. EXERCISING! Yep I said it. I will exercise, but fall in love with it?! NAH! That was not my thing. That seemed to only be for healthy, fit women. Not me.  My girlfriend even said to me "wow you said you would never love to exercise." I agreed with her. I never in a million years,  pigs would fly before I actually desired to workout for the enjoyment of it.

    I even had a day where I ran/walked my normal two miles, then came home and didn't feel complete so I allowed Ms. Jillian Michaels to kick my butt for 20 minutes. I felt amazing. I feel amazing. I get excited to do my workout for the day. Rather than it being a chore, I actually can't wait to do it again.

    I made a few changes last week to my diet. I switched my daily calorie intake from 1500 to 1350. MyFitnessPal automatically asked me to change it about two weeks ago and I panicked. I wasn't ready then but this past week I thought I should try it. It actually isn't that big of a difference. It really makes me cautious of when I am cooking dinner. That tends to be my biggest meal of the day. Instead of the normal 500-600 calorie dinner, I try to find something that is more 400-500.

    I am most excited about the amount of exercise I did last week. Three days of running/walking, and three days of aerobic/weight lifting workouts.
    I almost forgot the most exciting thing that happened. (I know I say that a lot), but really this was the most exciting. So I told you last week that I was going to buy Bob Harper's Kettle Bell workout DVD, well here is the verdict. I love Jillian and have been very partial to her for a couple of years now, but I think I have found a new love. Not sure if it is Bob or the Kettle Bell part of it, but with them combined....L.O.V.E!

    You know when the contestants on the Biggest Loser show say "I'm gonna be sick" or they actually throw up? Yeah! That really happens. My kids sat and watched me at my first attempt of the Kettle Bell workout and towards the end they asked me if they should call daddy or 911 if I pass out. I looked that bad. I genuinely felt as though I was going to lose all the food I ate that day! It was awesome!!

    Second workout with him was much better. I finished without feeling like I was going to throw up and really fell in love with the Kettle Bell workout. I started with an 8 lb. Kettle Bell. I will probably progress to a 15 soon, but 8 was a perfect place for me to begin to learn the idea.
    Today when I woke up I ran to my scale to see how much weight I have lost and sadly it was not was I hoping for. A quick recap. Last week on Monday I only had .6 pounds to lose to hit 20lbs. The next day I did lose exactly .6 lbs. Then two days later I was down an additional 1.2 lbs. A total of 21.4 lbs. Happy right?!! Yes until the next couple of days when the scale started going up!! I have been getting kind of discouraged but all I can think is that because of the new weight lifting/aerobic exercising that I have now added, that I am gaining more muscle. Noah keeps reminding me that it will come off and I need to keep going and stay positive. I love for him for that. By the way, he has lost 13 pounds in his journey. I am so proud of him.

    So today I weighed in at 187. I hate writing that, just so you know. But I need to track it week by week so I can look back and see the progress. In addition, it's just easier for my brain rather than doing math :)

    Oh man it is...Week 8 picture...

    Next week I am truly hoping for a big amount of weight loss, but for now I will continue to fall more in love with working out and finding new ways to keep it new and fresh!

    Tuesday, February 14, 2012

    Laundry room redo!

    I was beyond ecstatic when my father in law offered me some free wood floors in the color that I love!!! The only catch was that he only had a few boxes. Well I immediate thought about my laundry room. I have been itching to redo something but due to budgets I didn't have much to work with and knew that I needed to do a small room. I had started out by picking out some inspirational rooms that I pinned a few weeks ago, on you know it...Pinterest! Striped walls kept jumping out at me like a jack in the box, but in a good way...not the scary way like those freaky clowns! Anyways I had my mind set on the stripes and I wanted them horizontal, not vertical. My husband try to talk me out of it, but I stuck to my guns.

    Noah was great in helping me. He taped off the entire room and actually did almost all the painting. We also had some help from an awesome high schooler. So thank you Brandon!

    We picked out a beautiful grey color from Behr. It's called Pewter Mug. Then my father in law gave me gallon of satin white paint. Not sure the color though. But it was free and white. That's all that mattered!

    We used frog tape. I heard wonderful things about it and the verdict...LOVED IT! Well worth the extra money. Even my sceptical husband loved it.

    I did a little research online about the best way to paint stripes. I was so nervous that the paint would bleed. And by nervous I mean I made Noah and Brandon nervous with all of the anxiety I was having over...yep STRIPES! HA!!
    So I took the advice of one blogger and I believe it made a world of difference! After painting the entire room white and taping off the stripes, I painted a thin clear coat of satin varnish  to seal the tape so the paint wouldn't bleed through. It worked!!! The other trick was to take the tape off by pealing it towards the grey.

     So here is a little taste of the room.
    I was really wanting to wait to show you all the final product, but the more I thought about it, the more anticipation I got to show you something now!

    This is just the beginning and we have much more to do, but I can't wait to hear what you think. Hope you like it!

    Monday, February 13, 2012

    Week End Weigh In

    So yesterday was a pretty big milestone for me. I hit my 50 day mark of eating healthy and changing my life. I have never went this long! Whoo Hoo!!!! Can you tell I am excited?! I also have some great changes that have taken place that I can't wait to here it is.

    A couple of days ago I was driving and noticed a weird feeling that I have not experienced I think....EVER!
    I could actually feel room inside my pant leg! HA! Do you know what I am saying? My jeans always fit..I mean F.I.T! FIT!! They are tight in all areas. So I was so excited when I could actualy feel room inside my pants. Okay I know that sounds overly dramatic...but that is what I am DRAMATIC!

    Second I have lost another 1.8 pounds this week. I am .4 of a pound away from losing the BIG 2-0!! I can't wait. I have been setting some goals for myself and one is to lose another 37 pounds. I have realized that my life is too important to just let it go by without loving every minute. I know being DRAMATIC, does not make that easy for me, but I am going to do my best and enjoy every second with my family. My weight has not allowed me to do that. I have waisted too many years complaining and being unhappy. Something my husband said to me was " I don't care how you look, I care how it makes you feel." I have spent many days complaining about the way I look and I think he has heard enough complaining.

    I am going to buy a new DVD today. Bob Harper's Kettle bell.

    I can't wait to try it out. I am starting out with an eight pound kettle bell, which I have been advised I will not like. A friend of mine suggested that I start with a 25 pound kettle bell. Kettle bells are different from hand weights. Kettle bells are swung using more of your hips and core, where hand weights are all about arm strength. I don't know about you, but my upper body strength stinks! I think I am going to LOVE the kettle bells. I will let you know next week how it goes and if I had to head back to the store for a heavier kettle bell.

     A quick tip to maybe help you drink more water is to buy a "special cup." I don't know what it is, but I have found that if I drink out of my Starbucks cup, I will drink a ton more water verses drinking out of a regular cup. Plus I can always take it with me wherever I go. You don't have to get a Starbucks one, but many stores carry them. Drinking from this cup has encouraged me to drink about 3-4 of these a day.

    Friday, February 10, 2012

    Love is in the air

    Each year I anticipate decorating for the extra holidays. Valentine's, Easter, Fourth of know those "extra holidays." Valentine's Day is right around the corner and yet I don't have by my standards enough decorations to decorate, so why try. I just think "I'll do it the next year." Does that only happen to me?! Well this year was no different EXCEPT I now have Pinterest.

    I found some really cute things on there that inspired me to be a little more creative than going out and spending money on overpiced Valentine's Day decorations. So that's exactly what I did. I found things around my home to repurpose. I was actually surprised by myself...haha!

    I put fake flowers in vases that I already had and added water.

    This is too much Valentine's decor, but I wanted to show off the beautiful flowers Noah brought to me the other day just because. I also changed the mirror out for this picture frame that I love and had to have...thanks momma!

    This is where my mirror went. I just added some Mason favorite things...and then added some of our favorite candies. The tree got some heart garland and I made a cute little sign with my cricut.

    Simple things that can give your home some holiday love.

    Tuesday, February 7, 2012

    Week End Weigh In

    Sorry I am just getting this out today. I really want to make sure I send the weeks installment of Week End Weigh In each Monday so I can stay consistent, but yesterday was a very special day for us. If you didn't get a chance to read...scroll down and check out what we celebrated!

    As for the last week it has been a little sad to me. I only lost 1 pound. A little dissappointing for sure but it hasn't stopped me from feeling great! A total of 17.4 pounds down. This last week I ran three times and worked out with my favorite friend, Jillian Michaels! I made asked Noah to do it with me. I don't think he enjoys it as much as I do...hehe! But he was a great husband trying to support me. I also went running with him yesterday for the first time since getting back into running. I really enjoyed it. There were only a couple times he ran funny to stay with me. You know his legs are twice my length and I don't know what it is with guys! It's like they say "Oh I am going to try and lose some weight"...and BAM!....down 30 pounds! and "I'm gonna start excersing"....and BAM! They can run a marathon!

    I have to admit though I totally cheated Sunday. You know it was super bowl and I kind of prepared by taking some nice juicy oranges with me so I would snack on those. Haha When my tummy saw those Reeses Pieces, they didn't even know what an orange was! I came home to find out that I roughly ate over by 700 calories that day. Sad but the next morning I weighed myself and gained nothing so I was definitley encouraged that one day of messing up in a month is not so bad!

    So I am trying to prolong this, but last week I promised I would be posting pictures and telling my weight! AHHHH! I am feeling a little queezy!! Okay here it goes. As of yesterday I weighed in at 189.6 {cough, cough} You do the math to figure out where I started because I have said too much already!

    So here is a picture from Sunday, because this will be the picture that will be shown for this post. As brave as I am for showing you, I am not wanting to see myself in a tight fitting outfit on facebook...if you know what I mean?!

    Okay so I am throwing it all out on the table...okay the interent. I don't even have makeup on! Now that's love!

    I can't wait to be able to have this journey documented and see a picture of me looking like this in a couple of months

    Well a girl can dream...can't she?!

    Monday, February 6, 2012

    Happy Birthday

    Today my family celebrates the birthday of my oldest child. Little T is 12 years old. I can't believe it! I know I say that every year and it never fully seems to sink in that she is this old. Twelve years ago I was a scared, excited, and overwhelmed brand new momma. She was delivered at 8:45 am by my midwife Fran. As she was coming her heart rate dropped and they needed to get her out fast. The next few hours were a blur not knowing exactly what was wrong with her. The nurses assured me she was okay but the fact that I wasn't able to see her was definitely telling me a different story. When I finally got to see her about an hour later, my joy turned into fright. I saw my baby there hooked up to so many machines and had no idea what was going on. Two hours later we were discharged and heading to a different hospital that could care for her better. We spent a total of 10 days in an amazing hospital that helped and encouraged us as brand new parents. T ended up having Trachiamalasia. Her Trachea was not fully developed and therefore she struggled to breath.

    We spent the next three months carrying around our precious girl with an oxygen tank and apnea monitor just to keep her well. God graciously healed her and she never needed any surgery to repair her Trachea. She was strong and grew out of it all on her own. Needless to say being a mother at seventeen and a father at nineteen, we sure grew up pretty fast when she came into the world.

    She really has grown into a beautiful loving girl. Next year I might call her a young lady but for this year I am sticking with girl. That just adds way too much anxiety for me. T has always been a very independent person. She doesn't cuddle much, especially when she was a baby. She loves to figure things out on her own and do things for herself. She has become much more outgoing than she used to be. Don't get me wrong, she is still shy, but she has come out of her shell a little. She is a homebody. Anytime we are going anywhere she would much rather stay at home. She loves to read. She loves to bake. She loves to ride bikes and roller skate. She has become much more girlie. Loves to straighten her hair and wear earrings. She has always had her own sense of style and loves trying new things. You will never see her without skinny jeans.

    Her passion is soccer. It has given her a confidence that has helped her reach out to her friends and love on them. I know when we are too concerned about our insecurities that we can't focus on others. I believe that the last year she has become much more confident in who she is so that she can focus on others and make them feel good. She is currently playing for the U12 girls tournament team through our local AYSO. She plays sweeper and sometimes defense. She is small, but super fast.

    I am so in love with her and I love seeing who she was intended to be. God is a major part of our lives and I know that each day she grows closer to Him. At this age it really is us breathing God into our children but T has hit a point of asking questions for her own curiosity and I love seeing her connect the dots! I can't wait to see what God does in her life.

    Some of my favorite things about T:
        ~ Her sense of humor. You know the one where she laughs so hard at her own jokes...yep that's it!
        ~ Her style. Not being afraid of being her
        ~ Her up tightness...ok it's not actually my fav, but it something she got from me
        ~ Her athleticism. Nothing like cheering for her from the sidelines
        ~ How much she loves her daddy
        ~ Her drive to be the best she can be
        ~ Her patience with her little brother

    I love you baby girl!

    Thursday, February 2, 2012

    Crazy days

    Do you ever have one of those days where nothing seems right. You are stressed, snapping a little too much at your loved ones. Feeling depressed, feeling sorry for yourself. Crying uncontrollably the second someone will listen to you. Locking yourself in a room just to have yet another moment of pity....No? Not you? Well that was me yesterday. I am smiling while I write this only because I feel a million times better. I am not quite sure why I was having all of those issues yesterday, but man was it a bad day.

    Being a stay at home mom while homeschooling and holding down the fort while making three meals everyday, can well sometimes suck the joy out of life. Yes, yes I just said that. To be honest...very honest. There are some days (not very often, Thank God) where I just feel done! I feel overwhelmed with my life. It is the same thing day after day! No new and exciting things are happening for me. I love change, but having to get up once again to complete the same old routine is just... well... boring!

    So as I share honestly with you just how selfish, self centered, and with this all about me attitude, please just bare with me. I sit in repentance today with the Lord. I know that there are going to be some days where I am unhappy. Gratefully they don't come often and when they do I have an amazing husband who just sits and listens and doesn't judge. He is patient with me knowing that it is just my hormones talking and tomorrow I will be singing a new tune. In my repentance I have realized that some women would do anything to have what I have....I get to stay at home and not work. I get to make three meals a day for my family. I get to teach my kids their schooling and morals. I get to do so many things that some women are just unable to do. I truly love being a wife and mother more than anything, and I hope by me sharing these feelings, you know that to be true.Today I more grateful for things that God has so graciously given to me. By me getting to this point, it has rejuvenated the truth that my life holds.

    I read this today and it fit like a glove "When everything seems like it is falling apart that's when God is putting things together just the way He wants it." Some things that need to change for me so that I may truly enjoy as much of my time as a mother and a wife are simple things that I believe have contributed to my outbursts of "I am a crazy person today!" I think in doing these things, God will change my heart and help me with this "I deserve attitude."
    One, no more balancing my checkbook. I have been in control of that thing I think every year since my husband and I started dating other than about a years worth of time. A control issue that I am letting go of! I stress way too much over money and complain too much of what I don't have. Two I need to take a little more time off of the computer. I love to keep in contact with my friends in the facebook/blogging world, however sometimes again I get these feelings of "why can they do those things and I can't." Again another moment of feeling sorry for myself. Man I have been a brat!! I need to guard myself against the sin that I have allowed to seep into my life! Three is that I have to take time for myself. Now I know this whole thing has been about me being selfish and you are thinking "um why then would you need time for you?" I believe that in order to be a good wife and momma we must make time to be with like minded friends that can lift you up, and hopefully you can reciprocate. Because I am a stay at home mom that homeschools, I don't have a lot of time to visit one on one with my girlfriends and I believe we need that socialization every once in a while. Not all the time just some moments throughout your month. I also need to make it mandatory to go on some dates with my husband. Something that has definitely gone to the way side.

    Thanks to my dear friend Sarah who didn't know what she was getting herself into when she stopped by yesterday to pick up something. Verbal throw up just kept pouring out. She gave me some awesome words of encouragement though..." I will pray for you and go eat some brownies!"

    Well thanks for coming by to let me vent. I apologize, sometimes I ramble and my hope is that this all made sense. I love that I can be honest and you still love me.