Losing the Baby Weight

posted in: fit fridays, weight loss | 0

Losing Baby Weight

I’ve been anticipating writing this post for a while.  So, when I stepped on the scale this morning and it showed the number that I saw when I had my first doctor’s appt to confirm my pregnancy with my first little boy – I did a silent little squeal than ran and hugged my husband.

This has been an almost 3 year journey.  My older boy will turn three in September.  I had a rough delivery and that meant for a very painful recovery.  I could hardly sit or walk or stand without pain for 3 months.  Included in that was a move two states away.  I couldn’t exercise and I couldn’t lose the baby weight then as fast as I wanted.  I had gained 75 pounds and I wanted it off.

Why did I gain 75 lbs?  Well, some of it was baby – but not that much.  It was a hard pregnancy with much sickness.  I remember flying to TX in the late first trimester and having sour gummy worms and salt and vinegar chips on the plain, a Wendy’s value meal in the airport, then more gummy worms on the second flight.  I ate so much that pregnancy including CFA grilled nugget meals and Cook-Out shakes.  I hardly exercised till the third trimester and then I was too big so I just walked in order to get him out!  I should have had stock in G2 because that is all I drank.  Not a way to have a great, healthy pregnancy.  Some of that was sin – my rationalizing my gluttony because I was eating for two.

Shortly after my older was born, we found out I was pregnant with our second little boy.  I had only lost about 30 lbs.  What was I going to do?  I knew I couldn’t gain as much with this one, and thankfully it was an easier pregnancy and it was a 4-week shorter pregnancy.  I walked almost every day at the river near our house or at the zoo.  I just pushed that stroller.  Turns out I only gained about 30 with my second which is much more normal.  By the time I was home about 4 days I had lost it all.  Wow, couldn’t the first one have been that easy?

So, I had almost 40 lbs then to lose to get back to my pre-pregnancy weight.  Its taken me 19 months.  We have moved in that time and having two toddler boys is very stressful and hard – and wonderful and lots of hugs.  But, I’m an emotional/comfort eater.  And I love to bake.  Those two are hard when you are trying to lose weight.

Every pregnancy is different and every weight loss journey is different.  What you will find listed below is what helped me.

1.  Admit your sinful tendencies.  I confess my overeating sin often to God and my husband.  Both offer forgiveness.  My husband gives me counsel and encouragement and never holds it over my head.

2.  Make a plan.  Whether it is to eat less carbs, stay away from sodas, eat more fruits, join a program, join a gym – whatever it might be – write it down or tell it to others.  This accountability is such a help!

3.  Have accountability.  I’ve done this weight loss journey before but this is the most I’ve lost.  I have a few friends who ask me how its going via text.  I love that.  Having a husband is good accountability because I want to look good for him.  And knowing he still weighs less than I do is good motivation to keep me going to my ultimate goal.  Some of you may join a weight loss program for the accountability.  I love Weight Watchers.  I’ve lost weight before with it.

4.  Basic: eat less, move more.  Losing weight (if no other health problems) is that easy!  Really.  Try it.  Moving is essential to losing weight.  My mom is so gracious and pays for a gym membership and childcare.  But, if you don’t have that, go to a park and run with your kids, pop in a DVD in the morning or during nap time.

5.  Have motivation.  I’d love to say to my only motivation is to please God but I know that isn’t it.  Yes, it is a part of it because God commands us to honor Him with our bodies.  But, I also want to look good, fit into my skinny jeans and all those size 8 dresses in my closet, run faster, play with my boys without getting out of breath, and not be an overweight mom…I’d rather be a healthy mom!  I want to be a stylish trim mom.  I asked my husband to set my goal prize for losing the baby weight.  He knows I love to bowl but we’ve never done it.  He said let’s go bowling!  It wasn’t a food prize.  That would defeat the purpose!  My prize for getting back to wedding weight (11 more pounds) is an article of clothing from Talbots which I love.  And then my prize for making my goal weight is some time at Massage Envy.  Having extrensic motivation is helpful!

6.  Focus.  Discipline and self-control are both fruits of the Holy Spirit.  The Holy Spirit living in me is a great thing and necessary at all times.  He provides my self-control.  I just have to fight the war with my flesh to eat too much.  And as I’ve talked to my husband about my sinful food relationship – I know this is a battle I will never win until I see Jesus.  Then I will have a perfect body and won’t even need skinny jeans – but…the Spirit is here to help me in the meantime.

7.  Pursue the Gospel.  Realize that you may never lose all the baby weight.  Realize you aren’t defined by the scale or the number that magically appears when your feet step on it.  Jesus loves you no matter what you way.  He died on the cross to pay for our sins – which might include for you – a sinful relationship to food.  I have it. I think most people probably have some sinful attitude with food.  God made our bodies.  He made you to carry a baby and birth a baby.  You did it.  Your body may never look the same.  My body may be the same weight but it doesn’t look the same.  God is after your heart.  Jesus died to save you!  He lives so you can fight the flesh and serve Him with your body.

I’m not done losing weight.  I still want my wedding dress to fit again and it to get too big.  And I still have 22 lbs to be in a healthy weight range for my height.  So, the battle of the bulge continues.

Low-Carb Ham and Cheese Quiche

Low Carb Ham and Cheese Quiche

I always feel better when I eat low-carb, but it is such a difficult lifestyle to maintain.  When I eat too many carbs I always feel bloated and gain weight (mainly because I eat too much of the yummy bread of baked cheesy noodles – or cookies, cakes, brownies, etc).

These low-carb quiche are perfect for this lifestyle, but also are really quick to cook up one day and have for the rest of the week.  My kids were downing the ham as I was assembling them so they would most likely be kid friendly too.  And you can just pop them in the microwave as you head to school, work, or to the gym.

Low Carb Ham and Cheese Quiche
Author: 
Recipe type: Brunch
Cuisine: Eggs
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 11 Quiches
 
Ham is your quiche crust and a veggie filled scrambled egg center. These are low carb and very tasty.
Ingredients
  • 22 thin style deli ham (get a saltier ham, not a sweeter ham)
  • 5 eggs
  • ¼ cup shredded sharp cheddar (jack cheese would be good too)
  • 1 cup whole milk
  • ½ cup finely diced veggies (I used carrots and orange bell pepper)
  • salt and pepper to taste
Instructions
  1. Preheat oven to 350.
  2. Spray muffin pans (I made 11 muffins)
  3. Lay out your ham slices as a "cupcake liner" in your muffin tins. I put two per tin.
  4. Mix up your egg filling mixture.
  5. Pour in each muffin tin about ¾ of the way full.
  6. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until egg mixture is set.
  7. Enjoy!
 

Our Kids and Easter Candy

posted in: parenting | 1

Alphabetiles

Another holiday has come and gone.  And my kids, along with 99% of the children in America who received Easter baskets, are probably downing candy and sneaking it in their rooms to munch on under the covers once the lights have gone out.

How can we as responsible parents help our children with their love of candy?

1.  Ration it.  Don’t give it to them all at once.  My older son calls candy “olly” and I don’t know why.  But, I give him a few jelly beans or m&ms and then he’s off to play some more.

2.  Treat not a right.  Help children to see that candy isn’t their natural-born right.  It is a luxury and they don’t need it every meal or every time they do something good.

3.  Exercise.  Movement is a great way to encourage children to be active, learn new skills, and work off all that candy!  I was heavy from about first grade on.  I still struggle with my weight.  One of the things I want for my kids is the ability to have fun snack foods (sweets) but not to be overweight – so encouraging lots of healthy stuff and exercise.  My chiropractor always says “If you stop moving, your dead.”  We want our kids to live a long life.

4.  Brush their teeth.  I am not a dentist, and I don’t play one on television – and truth be told, my husband brushes our boys’ teeth at night after bath time.  We’ve used toothbrushes that are easy for them to grip, fit perfectly in their little mouths, and that are fun.  Alphabetiles provide toothbrushes that are just that.  Our boys are both under three and both love to brush their own teeth.  The new Alphabetiles toothbrushes that we received are blue (perfect for boys) and have their name spelled out in little tiles.  The tiles are easy to slide in the toothbrush and you can change the name out whenever you want (to a special nickname, or sports team, or holiday!).  I assembled their special toothbrushes while my husband was out in the backyard playing with the boys.  Jennifer, one of the creators of Alphabetiles, out of a desire to help her own children be healthy, designed these personalized toothbrushes.  “There was nothing on the market for moms like myself except a magic marker or stickers. So I decided to take the path and make it myself. I knew I was not the only mother with this issue and seen how it could help lots of families. Our design encourages kids to want to brush and parents know who their toothbrushes belong to.”

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My boys immediately liked their new toothbrushes and run to the bathroom saying “water, water” in order to brush their teeth.  We, as their parents, grab the right toothbrush (not sharing any more germs than they already do), and put a little toothpaste on it, and they go to town.  Another great benefit to having young children and personalized toothbrushes: you can have the sitter help them brush their teeth because she won’t have to know which one is which – she can read their names on it.  Brushing teeth is a fun and healthy bonding time.

Alphabetiles Toothbrushes

I would love to see Alphabetiles get more tiles and logos for their toothbrushes, which hopefully will come in the next few years (Go Gators, Go Tarheels, Thomas the Train, Mickey Mouse, etc).  Think of how your children would flock to the bathroom to grab their toothbrush, with their name, with their favorite basketball team logo on it.

So, whatever you do, be sure to instill happy, healthy, habits in your children, as soon as you can.  Their teeth, your dentist, and your children will thank you!

Alphabetiles sent me two toothbrushes in exchange for a blog review.  All opinions are my own!

 

 

Pumpkin Oats White Chocolate Chip Muffins

Pumpkin Muffins

Pumpkin overload – right?  Pumpkins are everywhere, even now that Halloween is past and we are moving headlong into the Thanksgiving season.

Do you know what my favorite Thanksgiving commercials are – ever – the Publix pilgrim little figurines – that get so full from all the Publix food that was served on Thanksgiving that their outfits tend to pop buttons.  So fun.  Growing up in Lakeland, FL – the home of Publix – I saw my share of Publix commercials – and am so glad to be living again with a Publix on every corner.

Anyway, back to pumpkins.  As a Mom, sometimes I stress about my kids’ nutrition.  I mean my older son could down all the fruit he could ever eat if I let him.  My younger son loves those little pouches that are fruit-filled.  We have instituted a donut morning one day every week, and I usually bake something sweet, and we eat out just to make life easier.  So, I’m not the healthiest Mom out there – but that isn’t the end all either. They love their fruits and veggies so that is great!  And neither of them really dig french fries – so that’s a plus!

These muffins – both of them are gobbling up.  I feel good about giving them one because there is no added fat in it from butter or oil – so that makes them healthier, right?  And, they are very yummy!  You can change up the add-ins for the muffins, and this time I had a small amount of white chocolate chips left – they are a very nice addition.

Pumpkin Oats White Chocolate Chip Muffins
Author: 
Recipe type: Muffins
Cuisine: Bread
Prep time: 
Cook time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 12
 
A healthy hearty filling pumpkin muffin with a touch of sweetness
Ingredients
  • 1 cup rolled oats
  • 1 cup all-purpose flour
  • ½ cup packed brown sugar
  • 1¼ cup Pumpkin Pie Mix in a can
  • 1 egg
  • 1 T applesauce
  • 1 tsp baking powder
  • ½ tsp baking soda
  • ¾ tsp cinnamon
  • ⅓ cup white chocolate chips
Instructions
  1. Mix all the ingredients together.
  2. Spray muffin tin (makes 12 muffins) and set oven on 375
  3. Fill each muffin cup about ¾ full with muffin batter.
  4. Bake for about 20 minutes or until done, don't overbake
 

Simple Summer Squash Salad

Simple Summer Squash Salad

Summer food should be pretty.  The sun is shining.  The gardens are bursting with fragrant herbs and brightly hued fruits the way God imagined and created them.

While I didn’t grow the items found in this summer salad, I did buy them at the Whole Foods in Buckhead (a delightful shopping, eating, and living area of Atlanta).  This Whole Foods takes the cake on any one I’ve been in.  The produce alone would be reason to keep coming back to it again and again.  I remember the first time I took our older son in there.  He exclaimed “watermelon” while looking at the sample containter of beautiful red, completely juicy, delicious watermelon.  (And that was the first time he had said it!)

IMG_1275

And another favorite thing I love about this salad is the dressing.  I do love to make my own, but when you’ve found a simple summer vinaigrette such as this one: Brianna’s Real French – why waste the time in making my own?  It is slightly tangy and fragrant and rests lightly on any food you put it on (this salad and our pink grapefruit salad are our two favorites).  And if you want to know where to get the delicious Yard Blend that I use in this side dish, contact my friend Jayme over at Holly and Flora.

So, without further ado – here is a perfectly simple summer side dish that would be a great accompaniement to your next light summer affair.  Get some crusty bread, cheese, wine, berries, and this – night well made.

This recipe was inspired by Laura’s.

Simple Summer Squash Salad
Author: 
Recipe type: Vegetable
Cuisine: American
Prep time: 
Total time: 
Serves: 2-3
 
Simple summer squash in a light vinaigrette with salty, smooth goat cheese
Ingredients
  • 2 yellow summer squash, sliced in ribbons
  • 1 zucchini, sliced in ribbons
  • 2-3 T Brianna's Real French Vinaigrette
  • pinch of salt and pepper
  • ½ tsp of Holly & Flora's Yard Blend
  • 2 T crumbled goat cheese
Instructions
  1. To slice ribbons in your vegetables, I used the side of my box grater with the long grating option.
  2. Toss your sliced vegetables in everything but the goat cheese. Let marinate for about 20 minutes
  3. Crumble the goat cheese on top before serving.
 

 

 

Fit Friday: 5 Health Benefits of Drinking Water

posted in: fit fridays, Uncategorized | 0

5 Reasons to Drink Water

Starbucks. Coke.  Diet Coke. Cherry Zero.  Milk.  Juices.  Green Smoothis. Kefir.

So many liquids to drink out there – and I’ve only named a few.  But, what about the one thing that is free and good (at least in our ountry in most cities in America)?

My health fast in the month of March is for the remainder of the month, I will give up my Sonic runs and my unsweet tea and drink only water.  So, why should we drink water?  These are not scientific but just some thoughts:

1.  Fills you up before a meal.  So you don’t eat as many calories, so you lose weight.

2.  Cleanses your body because drinking more makes you go to the bathroom more.

3.  Makes your skin look healthier because you are flushing toxins from your body that usually cause acne.

4.  Its free.  Our wallet could use a break.

5.  It tastes good.  I like our water.  Clean.  Not filtered.  Ice or no ice.  Lemon, lime, or just plain!  PS.  If you don’t like your water, there are items like Brita or you can buy Aquafina or Fiji water if your budget allows.  Those are my two favorite bottles of water.

Fit Friday Links

posted in: fit fridays, Uncategorized | 0

Fit Friday Links

Welcome to Friday. Its been a difficult week to do anything in the way of exercise because all I want to do is go outside and walk – but that is hard when the wind is blowing, you have two under 17m and the air is arctic (compared to Florida sunshine and warmth).
So this weekend is supposed to be in the 50s so the Mister and I will get some walking in with the boys.
But, thought I would pass along some healthy blogs I’ve read this week – whether they are encouraging us to exercise or some delicious recipes – I hope you find a take-away in these links!
Be healthy this weekend!

My most memorable stuffed peppers are the ones my then boyfriend made on the night we got engaged.  He knew I was doing vegetarian for a year and made some black beans stuffed green peppers.  Here is a recipe for some pretty quinoa stuffed peppers.  Add a side salad and its a perfect light and inexpensive dinner.

Two of my favorite things combined in one recipe: brussel sprouts and avocadoes!  This is a beautiful salad that would be paired well with a lean meat or eaten for lunch with a slice of toasted sourdough (which makes every day better)

Healthy living includes mental health as well.  Here are some timely tips from Jessica for living without un-needed guilt.

Some of you asked about the juice or raw detox I did.  Here are some reasons of why juicing could help you!

Enjoy some sunshine where you are this weekend.  Enjoy the time spent with loved ones.  And eat some good food!  Read a book.  Laugh with your kids.  These are all healthy things to do!

 

Raw Detox Recap

posted in: food | 0

Raw Detox Recap

Going on a two week vacation right after New Year’s doesn’t really help with keeping all those resolutions.  5 people in a hotel room doesn’t leave much room for exercising but I enjoyed the many days in the Florida sunshine (and heat).  But, I had returned with the scale being up 6 pounds (including birthday desserts).  So, I was thinking, even before the return trip, about how I wanted to get that weight off!  So, I chose to do a raw food detox for three days.

I looked at several websites and I’m glad that none came up with a specific menu.  I wanted to choose my own raw foods to eat.  I didn’t think it would be as hard as it was, but my husband knew it was difficult for me.  The only things I’ve had for three days have been raw except for salsa and gum.

My favorite thing I ate all wknd was my carrot apple ginger juice and avocados!  Man, I love those things!  In smoothies, on salads, or by themselves – they were a welcome addition when I couldn’t things like salad dressings.

I was hungrier than I thought I would be.  The affects on my body (besides a 5.6 lbs weight loss in three days) were bloating which I expected.  But, I think I also slept better too.

My thoughts:

Good:

I love the foods that God created in the form that God created them.

There is so much beauty in fruits and vegetables.

I didn’t snack as much (like grab half of a chicken nugget from my son’s plate).

Bad:

There are other things that God created: like fire and heat and animals that give us food products – that shouldn’t be cut out of my diet.  I was craving eggs when I finished the detox.  Eggs are nutritious.  I wanted milk, cheese, healthy breads, cooked vegetables, etc.

Most fad diets that are out there today (and for the past decades) usually tell you to cut out this or do away with that.  But, as most people can tell you, that doesn’t work for the long haul.  Moderation is key. I’ve learned in years (almost 20) of dieting, exercising, eating healthy, periods of loss and gain – that moderation of everything is key.  I think that is also biblical.  So for me, I will not be adapting to a raw vegan lifestyle.  May do a detox on occasion but I don’t feel the need to cut out everything cooked from my diet.

If you are going to choose to eat radical (in anyway):

1.  Make sure you are determined. Will power is key here.

2.  Make sure you have support from those around you.  My husband was a huge supporter of this and that is a giant help.

Fruit and Bran make a wonderful muffin

posted in: food | 0

Moist, healthy, filling, fruit: what more could you want in a morning muffin?

I have tons of recipes that I’ve torn out of magazines over the years and I’m trying to actually cook through them.  Now that I have someone to cook for it makes it a little easier (and I always need ideas)!

These were very moist and have plenty of fruit and fiber in them.  And they are under 200 calories. 

1 1/2 cup all bran (the cereal)

3/4 cup whole wheat flour

3 T sugar

1/2 tsp baking powder, baking soda, cinnamon

1 egg

3/4 cup buttermilk

1/2 ripe banana, mashed

1/4 cup molasses

2 T oil

1 apple, tart, chopped

1/2 cup frozen blueberries (don’t thaw) – use you can use fresh

Combine first ingredients (through the cinnamon).  Mix the wet ingredients.  Mix together with dry.  Fold in apple and blueberries.  Bake in greased muffin tins, fill 3/4 of the way, bake at 350 for about 23 minutes, give or take.  Cook for 5 minutes, then cool on rack.  Serve warm.

Much & Link Love: November 21 edition

posted in: Uncategorized | 0

Vacation over: Thanksgiving ahead.
1. Vacation was great: hiking, eating, sleeping, photoging, seeing friends. Beautiful weather.
2. Parents come in town tomorrow.
3. I’ve decided not to do the half on Thursday. That would take out 9 hours of what my parents and I could do together (drive, run, drive), so we will find stuff to do in Raleigh without going to Charlotte.
4. Friends are crucial to my wellbeing, but I also love downtown when I don’t see another soul. I’ll have to find a time to do that after my parents leave. Hmmmm. Maybe New Years.
5. It just wasn’t a pretty football weekend, except for the GATORS. I was in Boone (home of ASU) and loved saying GO GATORS. One of the signs I saw read “Gator: It is what’s for dinner. Go App.” – Well, that didn’t happen.
6. Short week in the office, busy week of editing and reading.
7. To shed some weight this holiday season (instead of put it on): one meal a day has to be either oatmeal, egg white omelette, or veggies. That will definitely help cut some calories during the day.
8. Got some new things in the works for after New Years. Thinking and excited.

Link Love:
1. Girls Gone Wise blog hits up entitlements and rights of women.
2. I think I would like to host one of these. Anyone in RDU interested – good way to start the new year.
3. These will definitely be making their way to a holiday party near you.
4. These will also be making it to a Christmas party near you (if you live in RDU or Lakeland).
5. Love this article that Justin posted on his blog. Often as Christians we ignore culture. But, here are some wise ways to engage and redeem. Hopefully a post will be coming on that by a friend of mine.
6. I would like to try this Chicago-style pizze at home one night, maybe while the parents are here.
7. Ed Stetzer to the rescue – especially if you are flying this holiday season.
8. I thought of these videos a lot this wknd while scaling 23 feet up a ladder on a side of a mountain.

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