Thursday, July 30, 2009

One of my many pet peeves!

So, since I've been on the subject of working out & joining a gym, I just thought I'd gripe about something that bugged the hell out of me Monday when I was lifting weights. I was at Shapes, listening to my IPod & minding my own business (okay, well maybe not..) when I saw another gym member approach a personal trainer & ask her about nutrition. Needless to say my ears perked up since I'm a registered dietitian.

Well, this woman, let's call her W, asks the trainer, let's call her T what she should do since she's stuck at a point where she isn't losing additional weight. T asks W what her diet is like & when W says, "I have shredded wheat for breakfast" T immediately says, "you need to stop that, grains turn right to sugar. Oh, & I personally follow a no dairy diet." UGHHHHGHH! Seriously, I could feel my blood pressure rise as I held back the urge to shout, "listen here, you freaking idiot, you have absolutely NO right to be dishing out nutrition information to the public when you have absolutely no degree to back it up. AND what you're saying is absolute crap!"

To top it off, I happened to be talking to one of the respiratory therapists at work today who mentioned that a trainer at her gym told her not to eat more than 2 pieces of fruit/day. When I asked her if it was Shapes, she said yes! Let's use some common sense & realize that shredded wheat & fruit are not the culprits of the massive problem our country has with obesity!!!!!

I went to school for 4 years to get my B.S. in Nutrition & Dietetics & then moved on to a 2 year dietetic internship, so it REALLY annoys me when I listen to some Joe-Schmo dish out information that is not accurate. SO, to everyone out there, eat fruit, eat shredded wheat with low-fat or fat-free milk & focus on eating in moderation. I think it's the growing portion sizes & inactivity that's the problem. Not grains "that turn to sugar."

Thank you for letting me vent. That is all. For now.

I spoke too soon!

So today I tried my third & final gym & found a keeper, deciding against Shapes & instead chose Family Fitness. I came to the decision for a few reasons: 1) It will save me about 15 minutes from my commute since Family Fitness is right on my way home 2) they provide you with towels! Yes, this may not seem like a big deal, but when you're running out the door in the morning, trying to remember 15 things, it's very nice to forgo one thing on your list. 3) They have 17" flat screen tvs on each piece of cardio equipment with 70 channels to choose from!! Let me tell you, this was AMAZING! I plugged my headphones in & watched Scrubs, Jon & Kate Plus 8 (I know, I know, why?!) & the Food Network. It made my 30 minute workout feel like 10.

So, I am extremely excited to have come to a decision & I'll be signing up for Family Fitness tomorrow. I am vowing to myself that I will go to the gym 3-4 days a week, no excuses!

Wednesday, July 29, 2009

What makes you happy?

I've been "tagged" by Lauren and here are the rules:
1. Mention and link back to the person that tagged you.
2. List 6 little things that make you happy!

3. Tag 6 other bloggers and let them know "They're it".

Here are just a
few of the many things in my life that make me happy.

1) My hubby, Mike makes me happy! Mike is the only person that can make me laugh hysterically when I had just been crying hysterically. He knows EXACTLY what to say to get me going. Mike is also the logic & reasoning in my life since I tend to be very high strung & anxious. AND he is the most amazing father to Cameron that I could ever design!

2) Cameron makes me happy! That baby boy amazes me every single day; he seems to have a new trick up his sleeve each time I turn around. I never knew such love until I met the little person who grew in my belly & I thank God for him each day.

3) My family makes me happy. I feel so blessed to have been raised by a loving family! Or should I say crazy family b/c that, we definitely are. I'm thankful that Cameron has both sets of grandparents to love & all of his aunts & uncles and I'm lucky to have such wonderful "in-laws" who I consider my true family.

The wacky Schuth family

The Pernecky clan

4) My friends make me happy. Friends are the best b/c they stay with you by choice & become as close as family. I love my friends & I would be lost without them! Each friend has something different & unique to offer & I appreciate each of them for that. Moving to FL was one of the hardest things I have ever done, but the friends we have made since moving has made me feel that this is truly home. But, I still miss the place that will always be home in my heart, & that's IL. I can't wait to see all of my wonderful friends from Chicago when we go back to visit in December!

5) My zoo makes me happy. I'm speaking of the furry rodents, aka, dogs & cats that live under my roof. They show me affection & love even when I don't deserve it. Love you, Dempsey, Stella, KC & Casper. And even my fish, Princess Sparkles!

"Miss Dumps"

Stella the stinkin Cheech!

KC Boy aka serial snuggler!

Casper aka, one bad ass, mo-fo!

It's Princess Sparkles!

6) My work makes me happy. I worked very hard to become a registered dietitian & I am thankful that I did. Caring and educating patients on a daily basis is rewarding; it's great to put someone at ease when they are in a very vulnerable state.

I could go on & on about the things that make me happy, but I'll leave at 6. What are the things that make you happy?

Tag, you're it!

1) Mike
2) Cameron
3) Lesli

Post baby butt kickin'!

I've been regularly working out in a gym since I became a member of Bally Total Fitness when I was sixteen years old. That is, until I was about seven months pregnant & retired my membership to the YMCA & began taking walks with Mike & my dogs each evening after work instead. I figured I would resume my membership after Cam was a little older & things were more settled.

Well, the months crept by & things never seemed to get settled as they really never do when you add a baby to an already hectic life. Silly new mom mentality to think I'd have an abundance of time on my hands! Anyway, I've really been itching to get back to the gym to burn off some stress & feel stronger & more in shape. Packing a bag for the gym & heading there straight from work can be the last thing I want to do after a full day's work, but once I'm there, I'm always so glad I went. I feel a lot more energized & more confident in myself after.

So this week I decided to test out Shapes since I got a free two week membership during a vendor fair at work. I tend to feel very self-conscious & intimidated when working out with guys, so I was excited to try an all woman's gym. Monday I went to Shapes & did a half hour of cardio which was just fine, but when I got to lifting weights, I found that I was so out of shape! You would think that after hoisting a 20+ pound baby around I'd have more upper body strength, but my arms felt like jello afterward!

Today I tried another gym called Choice Fitness since it was brand new & they offer a one-week free membership on their website. It's co-ed, but I figured I would give it a try & see which gym I preferred before dishing out cash. It ended up being a very nice place; the walls were painted cobalt blue & yellow, it was immaculate & I was able to get on every machine I wanted since it was fairly empty. After doing forty minutes of cardio, I moved onto weights & again felt completely dead! I was actually embarrassed at the pitiful amount of weight I was lifting which I usually could care less about.

But, the point is, it feels wonderful to be working out again & I can already feel my stress level decreasing. It's the one time in my day where my head is clear, I'm burning energy & catching up on my magazines as I bike or work on the elliptical. I'm sure I'll gradually increase my strength & get back to where I was pre-baby. I guess I should expect my body to be different after growing a human being in my belly for almost ten months, but that would be too sane of me to think!

In the end, I have decided I'll be joining Shapes since nothing beats working out & not listening to some meat-head grunt as he lifts weights far too heavy & checks himself out in the mirror the entire time. Or watching the little bimbette prance around in her full face of make-up in order to pick up guys instead of actually working out! Plus, Shapes has a pool, hot tub, steam room & sauna which could be nice after a workout! If I have extra time. Ha!

He got me!

Last night as I snuggled my sweet, innocent little Cameron, I felt completely at peace as he nuzzled against my shoulder. The moment of peace was not to last as Cameron decided to stealthily & quickly put his new chompers to work on my shoulder! I expected Cam to cry as I screamed "oww!" in surprise, but no, he just adjusted himself in my arms and went about his business. No biggie. I'm sure there will be more bites to come since flesh seems to be a perfect teething device.

Hope I don't turn into a baby vampire or anything... maybe I should lay off the Twilight books for a bit?

Monday, July 27, 2009

Praying for Stellan

I have been following the blog, My Charming Kids for many, many months. MckMama, as she fondly goes by, has 4 children; Stellan, the youngest, was diagnosed with SVT or rapid heart rate while in utero at 20 weeks gestation. The doctors told MckMama & her husband that Stellan would not survive the pregnancy. Miraculously, he was born with no further signs of SVT. However, at 4 months of age, he again developed SVT.

Stellan is now almost 9 months old & doing very poorly at the moment. This story has really struck a nerve for me since my baby boy is only one month older & I cannot fathom going through such heartache & pain. Please say extra prayers for Stellan & his family. God, please give Stellan the strength to pull through this! Stellan beat all the odds that were stacked against him when he was in utero & can do this again!

Sunday, July 26, 2009

Quality time with my boys

Today we wanted to head to Jared, THE Galleria of Jewelers in order to have our rings refinished or have irrodium plating done which makes them look brand new. Well, we had a few hours to kill so we figured we'd head across the street to the mall where Cam loves to people watch.

Cam was able to ride the carousel which was a lot of fun. Then the three of us shared pot stickers & an open faced pot roast sandwich. It was rather delicious! I enjoy our low-key weekends more than anything in the world and this was a great one!

Admiring the little ones at the table next to us

Mike must be making Cam laugh!

Our happy family of 3!


I bit the dust!

This morning, I hurriedly slipped on my new flip flops as I rushed around, trying to get us out the door in time for church. I grabbed 2 cups which were sitting on our dresser & headed toward the kitchen to put them in the dishwasher. As soon as my foot hit the kitchen tile, I completely, without any warning, wiped out at full speed. I had no chance to try to catch myself; my arm skinned down the cabinet as I fell and my knee caught the bottom part of the cabinet. I think I was in a bit of shock since it all happened so quickly & my shoulder & knee were on fire.

I think I'm going to retire those flip flops even though they're brand new. Can't have an already accident-prone person wearing shoes with ZERO traction!

Renewing our vows

We had a wonderful morning at Church of the Suncoast today as we were all able to renew our wedding vows. All the women had to gather in the back and the men waited at the front with roses in hand. As the women met their spouses in the front, we had to look into each others eyes & say our vows to one another. We promised to put God as #1 in our lives and our marriage as #2 because without our faith in God, our marriage cannot have the strong foundation it needs. We were told that couples who pray together have a less than 1% chance of divorce. That is something I would love to do at least once a week with Mike.

During this morning's service, we also discussed the importance of confiding & not hiding; when we keep secrets from one another intimacy dies. Some may feel there is "something" missing from your marriage & you may not be able to even put your finger on what it may be; loss of passion? a weak connection? We were advised to open up to one another by: 1) Confessing our secrets, 2) Receiving any confession with grace, 3) Praying together & 4) Committing to the healing journey together.

Not everyone has major confessions, but a lot of us keep "little" things to ourselves such as the extra, maybe unnecessary purchase we made at the store, etc. I know there are things I keep from Mike; the guilt I may feel when he gets up with Cam in the morning and lets me sleep. For some reason, this sort of thing always makes me anxious. I don't think Mike realizes how much guilt I feel on a day-to-day basis; I guess I always assume this is my issue & I need to work on it on my own. But, maybe if I let Mike in on my feelings, he can help me deal with it & get to the root of what is causing this.

After attending today's service, it made me realize that it's silly to keep feelings from Mike. Not only will it benefit me by getting a load off my chest, but Mike can potentially help me shed light on the situation.

Saturday, July 25, 2009

Ten months have zoomed by!

Last night we celebrated Cam's 10 month birthday with Matt, Kelly & Leah. We played with the kiddies & Cam was able to enjoy part of his muffin which he basically inhaled. Once the kids were sleeping, it was time for the adults to relax & catch up. We had a very low-key evening of listening to music, enjoying Perno Pale Ale & celebrating life!

I cannot believe that my baby boy is now ten months old; time is whirling by too quickly. We're savoring each & every moment we have with Cam & feeling so incredibly blessed that he is our son.

Last night we made 2 pizzas: A pepperoni on regular dough & another on wheat dough which was topped with a garlic/olive oil blend, Italian seasoned chicken, sun-dried tomatoes, goat cheese & mozzarella cheese; they were absolutely delish!

Corralling Cam

Mom & Dad encouraging Leah to eat!

Ten muffins for ten months!

Cam the chocoholic!

Perno pizza Fridays!

Cheers to wonderful friends!

Cakies enjoying their first Perno Pale Ale

Enjoying my first Perno Pale Ale! Ahh!

Hey, where did Matt go?!

Oh, there he is!

Me & the Kellsters!

Mike said something to annoy me! Imagine that!

Sunday, July 19, 2009

Because I've been married for seven years now, I found today's service at Church of the Suncoast to be very interesting & it gave me a lot to think about. The current series is called The Vow which discusses the fact that wedding vows are more than just the declaration of love. It was said that marriage should not be thought of as a contract which is based on mutual DIStrust, rather it should be a covenant which is a mutual commitment. When we say our vows, we use the words, "for better or worse, till death do us part," yet 50% of marriages end in divorce. Much focus was placed on the fact that marriage should be about WE vs. me & not always putting yourself before your spouse.

I've always known that devout Christians do not believe in divorce & today I learned more about why this is the case. It was discussed that when you see your marriage as a covenant rather than a contract, you will choose to hold up your "end of the bargain" whether or not your partner is doing the same. This is where I get confused... if you legitimately fall in love with someone & get married & as the years go by, your spouse turns into a different person, someone that you didn't make that vow to, what are you to do? Stay in the marriage because you said your vows in the presence of God? How does one "hold up their end of the bargain" day in & day out when mutual respect is just not there anymore? What if your spouse becomes abusive, turns to drugs or alcohol? This is where it gets fuzzy for me.

I truly believe that marriage should be taken seriously; one should never go into marriage thinking, "well, if it doesn't work out, there's always divorce." Marriage should be based on respect for one another; without respect, you have nothing. As it was said in church today, when you are two people who come together & become united or "tied together" & you both start going in opposite directions, you will begin to play tug of war & become untied. This is where we began to talk about complete vs. compete & not living in rebellion or fighting for dominance over your spouse & about Godly mutual submission. In most relationships, you'll find that one does have a more dominant personality, but as long as balance is involved, it works.

Marriage can be wonderful, sacred & full of happiness or it can be extremely sad & lonely. It requires constant TLC; things can fall apart very quickly. I feel it's so incredibly important to LIKE your spouse as well as love them. Obviously it's not always going to be a bed of roses, but when you take a step back & look at your relationship in the big picture, you want to have more happy thoughts than sad or angry.

My question is, if you are a Christian who fully believes that you do not leave your marriage come hell or high water, what do you do when things have truly fallen apart? You're waking up each day, looking at the person laying next to you & feeling pure disdain? Trying your hardest to make things right & failing? Do you stay in that life? Or do you leave & potentially have the ability to fine true happiness?

It is my personal opinion that life is too short to be miserable. Not saying that I think marriage is just a piece of paper that should be taken lightly, but that sometimes you have to know when to say when.

Saturday, July 18, 2009

In honor of the Green Beans

My wonderful friend Lauren has been wanting to get a tattoo on her ankle in honor of her four little Green Beans & today was the day! We will always remember Heidi Michelle, Paige Elise, Lily Nicole & Rylan Otto but this will be an extra way for her to honor & remember her babies. We had a fun girl's afternoon at Legendary Tattoos in Tarpon Springs, FL & shared hummus & a Greek salad at the Sponge Docks afterward.

Lauren was a tough cookie!

The finished product!

And what kind of friend would I be if I was not only there to give Lauren moral support but also to get a tattoo myself in order to put her at ease?! I've always wanted to get a little something on my wrist, so this seemed like the perfect time to do so. I happened to get the exact same star that Lauren chose & we decided on the same color (purple) which makes it even better. My dad will probably want to disown me after this little stint & Mike has referred to me as "white trash" (jokingly, of course!) since this is my fifth tattoo, but it's my body & I shall do what I like with it! So, there!


And here it is!

Rainy Saturdays are THE best!

I absolutely adore rainy weekends! Here in the Sunshine State, we don't usually get more than 15 minutes of a summer storm. So I was pretty excited when it began to rain as we were enjoying breakfast & drinking coffee. It's great to lounge on the couch & have the room lit by the glow of the lamps as if it were late evening. I appreciate the weekends so & enjoy some downtime after the rush of the week! "Everybody's workin' for the weekend!"

Friday, July 17, 2009

Starting traditions!

I feel that it's very fun to adopt traditions & it helps strengthen a family's bond. One of the traditions Mike & I have been doing for quite some time now is Pizza Fridays where we buy a dough ball from Publix & do a different topping each week. This week was particularly special since Cam was able to enjoy the pizza with us!

Today's pizza included wheat dough topped with an olive oil mixture of sauteed baby bella mushrooms, garlic & onion as well as frozen/thawed spinach, sun-dried tomatoes & low-fat garlic/mozzarella sausages. It was quite delish! Most of our pizzas tend to be olive rather than tomato based. I'm extatic that it's Friday & I'm looking forward to putting on a DVD, laying in bed & sipping champagne! Happy weekend to all!

Date Night

This past Saturday Mike and I got all gussied up to go to our friend's wedding at Clearwater Beach. We haven't gotten dressed up since our cruise in October of 2007 so it was a lot of fun to eat, drink, dance & be merry! Congrats to Jason on Liz on their new marriage! And thank you to Auntie Lauren & Uncle Gregg for watching Cam so we could get out & have fun!

Thursday, July 9, 2009

A few extra hours

Why is it that other countries take time to relax & regenerate when we Americans can do nothing but work, work, work. Who's logging the longest hours in the office? Whose house is the most organized, cleanest, with perfectly well-balanced meals on the table each evening? It's all about go, go, go and I'm sick & tired of it.

This evening, Mike was busily working on dinner as I fed Cam his last bottle of the night & put him to bed. As I reached the kitchen in anticipation to eat, it was 8:45pm; such an ideal time for dinner! I noticed that Mike had re-heated a rotisserie chicken in the oven & nuked some frozen veggies that were buried in the freezer. The first thing I heard out of Mike's mouth as I sat down at the table was, "darn it, this chicken isn't even hot yet!" My response? Whatever, at this point, I just want to put food in my stomach & call it a day. So, I grabbed some chicken & moved on to the veggies. Took one bite of the veggies when I realized that they were completely freezer burned & disgusting, so into the garbage I spit them. So, what did my Thursday night dinner consist of? About 4oz of chicken breast & a glass of water. Nutrition at it's finest!

It just got me thinking, that I wish we had a few extra NON-WORKING hours each day. That would change my world! I'd be able to spend more time playing with Cam, we'd be able to eat a decent meal as a family & after Cam was asleep, we would have a good amount of downtime to do what we want. Search the internet, blog, read, catch up on out-dated magazines, etc, etc, etc.

If you had a few extra hours each night, how would you use them?

Friday, July 3, 2009

New discoveries with Cam

I realize that I am unbelievably blessed to have been given the chance to be Cameron's mom, but at the same time, I have also realized just how challenging parenthood really is. One moment you are an independent person who can come & go as you please, eat & sleep as you please, when BAM, everything changes in the blink of an eye.

I remember watching Mike leave the house for work when Cam was first born, knowing he wouldn't be back for almost 10 hours & I would feel so envious of the fact that he was able to "escape" for a while & maintain some normalcy. One can never mentally prepare just how consuming it is to take care of this new, tiny person; to be up every 2 hours during the night & running ragged all day long & to know you have to turn around & do it all over again the following day.

It was when Cam was 6 weeks old that I decided I needed to go back to work a couple times a week just to relieve some of my anxiety. During this time my many co-workers would say, "Isn't it the most rewarding job you could imagine?!" or "Aren't you just head over heels??" And as I nodded my head in agreement, feeling deliriously tired & overwhelmed, I thought to myself, "You are out of your freaking mind; this job is anything but rewarding." You work day & night, feeding, changing diapers, changing your clothes & the baby's for the third time because you're both covered in spit up yet again and all the child can do is cry. This, I must say, is not very rewarding!

But as the months passed & Cam began to sleep & develop a personality & the ability to entertain himself for more than 5 minutes, I started slowly falling into a routine where things start to become "normal" again.

Fast forward 9 months & I can actually relate to what my co-workers were saying; this IS the most rewarding job I could have. I truly began to realize that my life has a whole new meaning & my little man is relying on ME to be the best person I can be to give him the wonderful life he deserves. We are having a blast watching him learn & discover new & exciting things. Every single day is a new journey for the 3 of us & I would not trade it in for all the money in the world. Each night as I lay with Cam & feed him his last bottle, I thank God for giving me such a gift.

But does this mean it's now all peaches & cream? Heck no! I never received my book, "Your Complete Guide to being the PERFECT Parent" so each day I question & doubt myself. I just have to continue to repeat, "you will NEVER EVER be perfect & it's okay!" All I can do is my best & that's what I'm doing.

So, if you're a parent who is feeling overwhelmed or inadequate, you are NOT alone. Just smile & nod at the person who tells you that being a parent is so completely magical, blissful & serene. It's a wild ride filled with many ups & downs, twists & turns, but mostly ups. Today happened to be one of those days where everything just clicked; we had a fantastic day at the Florida Aquarium & Cam had a blast. Watching him discover all these new creatures was amazing & made me feel like a kid again! So I can now say that being Cam's mom is THE best.