Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Trying to bust out of my rut with My Fitness Pal

My fitness & nutrition plan has been stuck in a major rut & I'm still ten pounds up from when I stopped breastfeeding Reese about a year & a half ago.  I've been very frustrated & discouraged but this past weekend when I had trouble buttoning my jeans, I decided it was time to crack down & get serious.  I absolutely refuse to buy a larger size & accept this current weight because I do not feel good where I am right now.  It's so important to feel confident when you're getting ready in the morning.  I, on the other hand, feel like a stuffed sausage when I'm getting dressed.  That will not do!

So, to shed those ten pounds, I've started tracking each & every calorie I consume throughout the day using the free app, My Fitness Pal.  It's super user friendly & has an insane amount of foods in their data base.  Every food I've ever scanned has been in their system which makes it easy to stay consistent.  In getting serious, I've vowed to enter every bite I take & don't ignore the creamer in my coffee or the scoop of food I've snagged from the kids' plates as I'm washing up the dishes at dinner.  Using this app helps me plan ahead which reduces the chances that I'll flub up.  When you only have 1200 calories allotted each day like I do, you get a lot more creative in choosing your calories wisely as well as exercising so you can get those calories back.  Normally I don't exercise on Wednesdays since I'm home with the kids, but I got up early today & took a half hour walk before Mike left for work which gave me 150 calories back.  It also helped me reach my goal in getting 10,000 steps/day on my fitbit.


When I initially started My Fitness Pal a few weeks ago, I found myself being drawn to pre-packaged foods since they're so easy to scan in & stay portioned-controlled.  But, that completely jacks up the amount of sodium I should be consuming, so I've gotten back to preparing my own meals.  Yesterday I copied a wilted spinach & citrus quinoa salad that I love from Publix. 

I didn't have a recipe, but I did the best I could & it came out great.

Wilted Spinach & Citrus Quinoa Salad

Quinoa, 1c uncooked
2c water
1 orange, zest & juice
1 Lemon, zest & juice
Baby spinach, heaping handful
Red wine vinegar, 1-2T
Olive oil, 1-2T
Mixed nuts & seeds 
Dried cranberries to your taste
Salt & pepper to taste

Cooking instructions:
Rinse 1 cup quinoa in a mesh strainer until water runs clear.  Bring to a boil with 2 cups of water & reduce to a simmer until water has absorbed, about 20 minutes.  While the quinoa is cooking, mix juice & zest of lemon & orange with olive oil & red wine vinegar; salt & pepper to taste. When water is absorbed from quinoa, mix with fresh, baby spinach until wilted.  Add citrus vinaigrette, dried cranberries, nuts & seeds of choice such as honey roasted peanuts & sunflower or pumpkin seeds & salt & pepper to taste.  Enjoy while hot or chill in refrigerator & enjoy cold.

Approximate nutrition information per 3/4 cup: 171 calories, 9g total fat, 3g protein.

We served the salad along with a Swai fish fillet which was baked with fresh orange & lemon juice, lemon pepper & salt.  The entire meal was under 300 calories; not too shabby!  So far, so good in keeping on track & within my calorie goals, but I have a feeling the weekends will be a bit more of a challenge.  I'm usually not motivated to workout & I'm more inclined to eat less healthfully & have that extra glass (or three!) of wine!!  The other thing is trying to be patient & not expecting the pounds to immediately come off.  I do have to say, it feels great to be actually doing something about getting back on track instead of feeling discouraged & out of control.

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Wednesday, June 18, 2014

The princess & the potty

Reese moved up to the next class at her daycare so she's offically in P2 which is the 2 1/2 year old room.  Normally I have a hard time when the kids transition to the next class, but this time I was totally ready since they focus more on potty training.  Not to mention, the teachers in this class are total dolls, so Reese was more than happy to move right along.  Once I found out she was moving up, we headed to Target & I let Reese pick out her undies.  She chose Frozen!  The teachers told me that's she's doing great & going on the potty each time they try, but they've been keeping her in pull-ups since she continues to wet those.  But she had still never peed on the potty at home!!

Until today, that is!!! Yay!!!  Who knew that going pee on the potty could be so darn exciting?!  She got her undies off herself, sat upon the potty & off she went.  I was so happy!

We celebrated by going to Chick-fil-a for lunch today.  This morning Cam said, I want to go to Chickaletta today.  Mike and I looked at each other like, huh?  After much description, we figured out that he meant Chick-fil-a.  Can you tell we don't get out much?!

We're ending the evening with Sleeping Beauty while sitting on the potty in a Princess Aurora dress.  Hey, even princesses go potty!

We're dining on some honey mustard pretzel chicken which looks pretty darn tasty!  Click here for the recipe.  Happy Wednesday!

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Monday, June 16, 2014

Father's Day 2014

We had some jam packed days last week since Grammy & Auntie Erika took a trip down from Chicago for a quick visit.

The kids stayed home with them & had a blast all week.  You can hop over to their blog to see a few more pictures.

We headed to Orlando to catch up with our friends from Illinois.

We were positively connected at the hip with Matt & Amanda before moving down to Florida ten years ago, so we miss them dearly.  I've known Amanda since we were about 6 or 7 years old, so we go way back.  And I'm not one to brag, but I did some match making in high school & they've now been married for 14 years & have three boys.  Not to shabby on my part!

We headed to Sarasota after work Friday to not only celebrate Father's Day weekend, but also Mikayla's 7th birthday!  Based on the pictures above, it's safe to say that she was pretty darn excited about her presents.

Reese was pretty excited to be wearing her Elsa crown.

Cam apparently was too.

Our kids, like most, adore Frozen!

The kids & Mike spent a LOT of time in the pool.  Reese is finally able to swim confidently in her water wings.


I watched from the sidelines with the girls since I just got a tattoo on Thursday & couldn't get it soaked in the pool.

Over three years ago, I got Cameron's name put on my shoulder when I was unknowingly pregnant with Reese.  When I saw the positive sign on the pregnancy test a few days later, I thought to myself, well, I guess I'll be adding another name to my shoulder!  Only took me two & a half years to finally do it!


We ended the weekend with some grilling & presents.

It was a great week spent with Mike's family & a great weekend spent with mine.  Too bad we all can't live close enough to be together all the time!

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Tuesday, June 3, 2014

He's all growns up

My baby boy graduated pre-K this past weekend & it was a very sweet & emotional day!  Prior to having kids I would have told you that you were crazy if you'd said I'd be crying at a pre-K graduation.  I mean, why even bother to have one?  Big deal, you napped & ate lunch & learned some letters.  Fast forward to me being a parent & I find that I'm super emotional over nearly every milestone!

Here's my boy on his first day of pre-K.


And here he is nine months later on his graduation day!  I'm a proud Mommy.

Reese was super psyched to go.

So psyched that she was ready to drive us herself!

Maddy was sweet enough to come up with my parents to watch Cam graduate & cheer him on.

Reese is Cameron's biggest fan!  They are so sweet together when they're not pushing each others buttons!

Cam's class has been practicing so hard & they did an absolutely amazing job.  Cam was front & center & just belted out the songs with hand gestures & all.

When he sang, You'll Be in My Heart by Phil Collins the tears definitely flowed.  He'd point at me when saying the you'll part & back to his heart on the end.  I could cry just remembering it!

Then it was time for graduation!  Here Cam is with his sweet, hard working & dedicated teachers, Ms Fran & Ms. Erica.

They posted a baby picture along side their graduation photo as they received their diplomas.  So stinkin cute.

Cam has come so far this year & I'm so proud of him & excited for him to start his journey through school as he starts kindergarten in the fall.  I'm sure I'll be a weepy mess on his first day as he takes the bus to school!!!  The good news is that he's now able to spend Wednesdays with me & Reese as summer vacation officially starts tomorrow!!!

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