Tuesday, February 26, 2013


Yesterday was an exciting day for our family!
Ultrasound...gender reveal day.

My mom made the trip down, she wanted to see the ultrasound and be here for the big reveal.
It was sure fun having her around for a few days...
although I think we might have bored her with the early bed times.
But she was a good sport, and the kids LOVED having her here to spoil them!

Yesterday (Monday) morning was my doctors appointment...bright and early.
We had decided that we were not going to find out at the ultrasound what the gender of this baby was.
Instead, we had my amazing doctor (yes, he really is THAT amazing) write it down in a sealed envelope.
We then took that envelope to a yummy bakery.  
Thank you to 25 and Main for your help in making this happen!!!

25 and Main baked me a dozen cupcakes...
vanilla cupcake, vanilla frosting.
Then they took my envelope, opened it up and put a filling of the appropriate color 
(based on the gender we were having)

It was a long 2 hours...I was anxious to find out.
The girls got home from school early yesterday, which ended up being the same time the cupcakes were done.

As we got home, we all put in one last guess for this baby's gender:

Jason:  boy
Alisha:  girl
Mikayla:  boy
Kaitlyn:  girl
Connor:  just wanted a cupcake ASAP
My mom:  girl

And then just like that, we let the kids dive in to the cupcake!

It was so fun to see their excitement!!

After the cupcakes were eaten, we opened up the envelope to reveal the ultrasound pic...

The funniest part of the afternoon happened a little later.
While sitting in the living room, I would say to Connor:
"Connor, it's a baby boy!"

EVERY. SINGLE. TIME. he would make this same face!

It was priceless!

Needless to say, we are very excited about this addition to the family.
Now...if only we could come up with a name!

Friday, February 22, 2013

Don't give in, don't give up

So you had a slip up? Maybe you have fallen down completely. Are you going to let it keep you down? Because I know you have the strength to get back up again....

Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Tough love

I have seen a lot of chitter chatter these days about weight loss.  I've been following a lot of conversations.  Some snarky, some motivating.  Ultimately, it got me thinking.  Thinking about expectations and role models.  It has me thinking about my own personal journey.

You see, many people think you have to do certain things to lose weight.  That you HAVE to have a gym membership.  Or that you HAVE to own a treadmill.  Or that you HAVE to have support from a spouse.  (note:  I had NONE of these during the bulk of my weight loss....)

The truth is, that's just not true.  Not any of it.  Each person has a different journey.  Each person has different obstacles in their way.  And while some might find certain people motivating, others may not. That's just life.  I don't expect to connect to everyone who reads my blog.  In fact, sometimes I'm surprised anyone can relate to me.  But I've always vowed to be honest about my journey.  Because if nothing else, that is what I was searching for when I was in the middle of losing all the weight.

I was one of those girls that made excuses for myself.  I'd have my thyroid checked every 2 months because it HAD to be low since I wasn't losing weight.  I was one that told everyone, 'well if I had the ability to go to the gym I could lose weight too.'  Or another one I used frequently was, 'well if I had more time...."

Here's the truth:  I was being a passive pansy with myself.  Because honestly, the truth was too hard to accept.  And if that is where you are at, trust me...no judgement coming from me!  I lived that way for YEARS!

I refused to look at all the meals I'd indulge on through a drive-thru, refusing to look at the fact that I'd come home and plant my rear on the couch for the evening.  I surely wouldn't count calories...at least not honestly.  Because honestly, that was hard.  I didn't want to be accountable.  I didn't want to admit that truthfully I could be doing things differently.  I said I did.  I told 34923804982309 different people that I wanted to lose weight.  But did I really?  Were my actions matching my words?  Sadly, no.

That is why I probably started over so many times.  Because I was never checked in to my own health.  I was never willing to look at myself in the mirror with honesty.  It's easy to fluff things to make yourself feel better.  We all do it.  It's so NOT comfortable to have a come-to-Jesus talk with yourself.

But that talk is what changed it for me.  Not allowing myself to use those same excuses that I had for so many years.  Not allowing myself to believe I was destined for fatness my whole life.  And when I lost all this weight, I could have used a million more excuses for reasons not to.  Instead, I let them propel me and make me stronger.

Losing weight isn't rocket science people.  It really isn't!  It doesn't take shakes, or magic pills, or shots, or any fad diet.

The big secret to losing weight:  BURNING MORE CALORIES THAN YOU CONSUME.

So what excuses could I have used?  I had just had a baby, my husband was gone the entire summer across the country working, I was living a single-mom's life,  I couldn't afford a gym membership.  so what, so what, so what.  I found a way to make it work BECAUSE I MADE IT WORK!

It's when you want something so badly, you get in a state of mind...the find-a-way, make-a-way state!  You will be willing to pace your house for HOURS at night, stepping up and down on a Wii fit board.  (Don't have one of those?  Walk in place...it's the same thing!)  We all have feet, we all know how to use them.  And that's exactly what I did.

Was it easy?  I guess skill wise, yes.  It doesn't take a genius to put one foot in front of the other.  Was it enjoyable?  No.  It was boring as hell!  But sometimes you just have to suck it up and do it anyway because that might be the only option you have in the moment.

Now maybe you aren't in the make-a-way place.  Maybe you aren't ready for that personal accountability.  I understand completely.  No one can force another person to be ready to change their lifestyle.  No person, no health diagnosis, no anything.  You will only decide you are ready when it clicks in your head.  Until then, I won't give up on you!  Keep trying.  Keep finding a way to be the best you you can be for the day.

I know it's hard.  I know it's painful to be utterly honest with yourself.  Only you know your best self-sabotage techniques.  And until you are honest with yourself, you'll keep using them.  But only you can decide what kind of hard and painful you want to face.....

It's hard to swallow a bitter pill.  It's hard to change eating and exercising habits.  It's been one of the hardest things (still is) I've done.  It takes constant focus and dedication!

But do you know what else is hard?  Not having the energy to play with your kids because you are overweight.  Being winded going up a flight of stairs.  Not having a single outfit in your closet that fits. Feeling like the "fat one" all the time.  Never finding a "good picture" for your kids to take to school.  Feeling like you embarrassment of your kids because "your tummy is really big."  Or how about dying at an early age...missing moments in your families lives because health wasn't a priority.

No matter the path ahead you choose, it's going to be hard.  So choose your hard........

Friday, February 15, 2013

My heart explodes!

I can't begin to tell you how overwhelmed I am by the incredible support that has been built up here.  You people motivate me!  You dig me out when I'm in a funk.  It is for that reason that I keep marching forward with health each day.  Because trust me, it would be easier to just give in and give up.  It would be easier to say...'well, it doesn't really matter anymore since I am pregnant and will be gaining weight.'  

But I will not quit.

Maybe you're pregnant.  Maybe you're not.  Maybe you've tried in the past, maybe you haven't.  Wherever you are, times will get tough.  They will!  It will be hard to lose the weight and stay healthy.  There will be times you wonder if it's worth it....if all the food sacrifices, early morning workouts, exhaustion from the workouts, sore muscles...you will wonder if any of it is worth it.

I promise, a million times over it is!

So please, pick yourself up.  Dust yourself off.  Realize that you are capable of conquering the hard and difficult.

I am so impressed by the readers I have on this blog.  By their honesty.  By their comments!  By their sweet personal emails to me!  I am blessed!  I've picked up many new readers this last month thanks to this blog contest over at healthline.com.  There are a lot of amazing blogs in the running for the top spot.  Slowly, my blog has fallen from the first place...down to 6th currently.  And while my children are sad that I won't win, I am beyond empowered by this!  I am so touched!  So honored!

To each and every single person out there who has voted once, who has voted daily, who has prompted others to vote....THANK YOU!  You have no idea how much you mean to me!  I feel like some pretty amazing doors have been opened because of this blog contest.  From the article written about me, to some other pretty incredible things I have lined up to come in the next few weeks....just wait, it's BIG!  :)  I am constantly amazed at the outpouring I've received about my story.  Thank you for helping spread the word.  Thank you for helping spread the message...overcoming hard things in life is beyond difficult, but it's possible!  And that is a message that NEEDS to be shared in these sometimes dark and gloomy times.

Lastly (does it sound like I'm accepting an award?) (My heart is just overflowing!), I would be so ungrateful if I didn't publicly thank my dear friend Denise for nominating me in the contest.  I have never actually met Denise.  (Although I can't wait for the day we do meet in person...)  I found her through a group, and then we connected more personally.  She has always been one of my biggest cheerleaders when what she doesn't realize is how much she motivates me!  (You guys, she's amazing...she's lost like 110 pounds and just finished her very first 1/2 marathon...the woman is INCREDIBLE!)  She has truly been an advocate for me and my story and I hope you know how much that means to me Denise!  Thank you for helping spread the word about my story and for helping so many amazing doors to be opened for this blog!

People, I couldn't have gotten where I'm at without all of you.  In my head I still wonder if what I say even matters.  I consider myself a small-time girl who has lived the life thrown at me.  And along the road to living that life, I've gained the strength to share some of the challenges I've overcome.  If that helps you to know you can do hard things too....I'm honored!  Because the truth is, we do all face a lot in our lives.  We all go through hard times.  We all tend to lose ourselves at some point during the journey.  And it is when we find ourselves and reclaim our life that we can become our best selves!

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Dress the part!

I wish I could come here and report back that I've been running again.  But.  I haven't.  I guess I'm just going in circles.  I'm feeling the stress from school.  I'm feeling the pressure at home.  I'm STILL feeling the sickness from the pregnancy.  

With all of that, I have close to zero motivation for anything else.

I need to kick myself in the pants.  Do you ever get in one of these moods?  The ones where you KNOW what you SHOULD be doing...but you just don't.  I know going out for a walk would help me feel better....I actually know it.  And I tell myself each day that today, TODAY will be the day to get some fresh air and walk the mountain.  Then...the day gets busy.  I get tired.  And a nap sounds so much more refreshing than any walk.

So, days pass.  And I'm still blah.

I think part of my funk is knowing that I'm down to the last of my clothes that I can wear.  (Notice, I did not say fit!  Because nothing fits...I am looking like a stuffed sausage in just about any pants I own, and all of my shirts.)  (Hence, my wardrobe is now PJ pants, hoodies, and scrubs.)  I tend to not even get my makeup done most days, and I usually just throw on a hat or a pony tail if I have to run errands. Are you catching my drift???  I need to feel like a lady again!

I was out running errands at the mall and decided on a whim to head into Motherhood Maternity and try on some actual maternity clothes.  After all, I am in my SECOND TRIMESTER now!  So, it's allowed.  ;)

(pants:  size small; shirt: size small)
(I should have bought them both just because they said SMALL.  I've not worn a small ever.)

Can I just say, for that one moment, in the dressing room, I actually felt pregnant....and not just chubby.  It's hard at this stage.  It's hard because none of my clothes scream 'I'm pregnant.'  Instead, they shout...muffin top!!  So when I put on those maternity clothes, it was as if I morphed into a pregnant lady.

Then.  I looked at the price tag.  And I couldn't swallow spending practically $60 on one maternity outfit....

But it has made me see that a lot of my funky mood has come about because I'm not dressing myself anymore.  I'm not taking the time to care to look good.  I remember I used to do this at my heaviest.  I'd want to hide, blend in.  So I'd wear big sweatshirts and comfy pants....hoping no one would notice I was big.  Now, I'm falling into those same shoes again and it has got to stop!  There is something to be said about finding clothes that fit your body comfortably...NO MATTER WHAT SIZE YOU ARE!  So my advice...if you are in a funk...look at your wardrobe.  Are you taking the time to wear clothes that fit your body.  (I don't care if you are big, small, or somewhere in between!)  We all feel better when we look good in our clothes, and I really feel it's possible to look good in clothes no matter what size you are!  This was something I wish I would have realized at my heaviest....  So if there is nothing in your closet that makes you feel HOT.... go out and splurge on yourself!  You deserve it.

(And it looks like I will be taking my own advice too....)

Wednesday, February 6, 2013


I have been busy.  But have I been too busy to blog?  Maybe.  Or maybe I just feel blah with not much to say.

Pregnancy blues?  Winter blues?  Or just plain old blue blues.  Whatever they are, they stink!  I'm ready to start feeling normal again.

Since the half marathon I've done just about nothing as far as exercise goes.  Really.  I haven't even stuck my fitbit on because it's been THAT pathetic.

I had been feeling pretty dang good.  Then I got on the scale.  I realized I'm up 8 lbs from the start of this pregnancy.  8 pounds already and I'm only 12 weeks.  Ugh.  I was hoping to keep it under 5 for the first trimester.  My ultimate goal is to stay under 180 for the whole pregnancy.

So, because I felt I was gaining too fast, I started snacking a little less.  (Before anyone jumps down my throat...I was still eating plenty for this baby and myself.  Before I was getting carried away with the food, I reigned myself in...but was not starving myself or the baby.)  

The problems started soon after.  Puking.  You see, I'm realizing that the more consistently I eat, the less I puke.  And since puking sucks, I'm reverting back to uncontrollable eating.

(You think I'm joking.)  (I'm not!)

Today I've been munching on and off all day.  Basically there is always food around me.  I am always eating.  Sometimes good choices, sometimes not so good choices.  But as long as their is food going down, there is not puke coming up.  (TMI?)

So maybe I'll gain 3924082304982309 pounds in this pregnancy.  But if it means I'm not puking, whatever.  I say whatever.  But really, I feel like it's a double edged sword.  I feel I have to pick the lesser of the evils.

Then.  I realized that maybe, just maybe, since I was gaining back my energy...if I added in some walking, or <gasp> running I would counteract all the eating I'm doing.  So that's the plan for this week.  (Oh.  It's Wednesday.  I guess that's the plan for 1/2 the week.)

As far as baby goes...s/he is growing great.  I had my first ultrasound a few weeks back...

And we find out the gender on the 25th of this month!!!  EEEK!

And just because it's been a while since I posted, I'll leave you with some recent pics of the happenings in our life...enjoy.  (They are completely fitness unrelated....whatever.)

Yes, even in sunny Saint George we get SNOW!  ugh.  (Like once a year.  But still!) 

However, most days look beautiful like this! 

Yep.  That's a selfie...

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