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Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Bad momma!

Like most moms, I pride myself on trying to do what is best for my children and sacrificing everything I can for their better good.  Almost to a fault.  As a person that likes to learn from her mistakes, when Beaner was born, I decided I was going to do everything right that I did wrong with my other two.  Beaner was going to be cloth diapered, organically fed, carried in a carrier, breastfed until she no longer wanted and coslept.    That is where the bad momma part comes in.

Ok, enough small talk. The fact is...well, Beaner fell out of bed last night.  There it is.  I said it.  I was woken to a horrible cry that was simultaneous with my hubby jumping out of bed after he heard the thud.   I know what your thinking.  You've dropped, tripped over, yelled too loud or did some other bad momma move at some point.  You see Rooster and Peanut have both been dropped so I was determined not to drop the Beaner.  Remember I'm being perfect momma this time? 

This falling was followed by me staying up most of the night constantly making sure she was breathing and analyzing every groan that she made.  She is totally fine although I'm certain she will have nightmares of falling for a lifetime to come.  As for me, I waded in a bath of self pity all day over what a horrible mom I was only to decide I was a horrible mom for engaging in this selfish behavior with 3 little ones suffering my wrath.  I can't for the life of me figure out how it happened but I beat myself up all day long and have decided it is time to start fresh tomorrow.

I did put her crib together though...

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Saturday, March 19, 2011

Murphy 30 day challenge update

At the beginning of the month, I told you that we were beginning a decluttering project in our house for 30 days.  Well with one week to go, I'm proud to say we've made some good progress.  We have filled and emptied the back of our Honda Pilot with donations twice and we are almost ready for a third trip tomorrow.  We have sold over $100 worth of items, mostly kids stuff.  We have three large boxes of shredding that I hope vaporize over night... and our house is a complete disaster right now!

When you start peeling away the layers in your house, you tend to make piles everywhere and it is easy to say "I'll take care of that later".  The psychology behind getting rid of stuff is really quite interesting.  Some people hold onto things because it makes them secure while others have a huge fear of losing the most important item in their life.  As we continue this process, I've constantly had to say "if it doesn't have a place and a purpose, it has to go"  Although our 30 days will conclude this Friday, we have a few more projects in store and plan to continue our challenge. 

I know.  I know what you are thinking.  Where are all the pictures?????  Well, my husband requested that I not photograph our horrendous mess in our bedroom or other areas and I respect this request.  However, I don't want to disappoint my readers so here's the deal. I have two major projects coming up and I promise to show before and after pictures once they are done.  The two areas will be our playroom/dining room and our walk in pantry.  So stay tuned in as the 30 day challenge continues and please share your pictures if you have decluttered any areas of your house.  It feels great doesn't it?

Thursday, March 17, 2011

I found the key to weight loss!

I have found 3 key components to weight loss and if you scroll down, they are bolded for your quick reading.  Of course I hope you'll read all of this but I'm a realist and I like quick blogs!

I have to start by saying I am not an expert in nutrition, fitness, or any other weight loss related field.  I am however an expert at gaining a ton of baby weight and struggling to lose it.  Twice.  My 3rd time; however, I think I got it!  I currently weigh less than I did the day I got married and I eat brownies or chocolate chip cookies at least once per week.  You read that right.

So I was determined to figure out why I kept losing at least a pound every other week.  Initially, it was 1-2 pounds every week.  Sure, I chase around 3 kids, but so do most moms.   

That leads me to the first key to weight loss.  EXERCISE.  I know, I know, you hate exercise.  You don't have time. You don't belong to a gym....and so on.  Yeah, that is my excuse too but it is so important in many ways.  I am actually losing muscle now because I'm not exercising.  You read that right, I'm telling you to do what I am not doing because I know I should!  It gives you more energy and I've never heard anyone leave the gym and say "I wish I didn't do that exercise".  So, I'm working on that one and you can too!

The second key to weight loss is DO NOT DIET.  I know, now you think I'm crazy.  Every single diet out there has one thing in common as a fault, they make you think about food.  All day long.  Your either counting points, reading labels or weighing portions.  Personally, I don't want to spend that much time thinking about the one thing that can make me fat.  Instead, follow some simple changes that will benefit your entire family.  Increase your fruit and veggie consumption.  Try to eat more whole foods.  Do not buy processed foods, anything with high fructose corn syrup, red 40... etc.  you get the point.  It doesn't have to be organic to be better just make it a habit to avoid those sugar craving man made incredients.  Make your brownies from scratch if you want brownies.  Maybe add a little flax seed, they will still taste good, I promise.

My final and most important recommendation is AVOID DAIRY.  Yes.  That is what I found to be the key.  Not necessarily because of the dairy itself but because it forces you to make better choices.  You would not believe how many foods have butter, whey, casein, milk, etc.  My beaner is lactose challenged so I avoid all dairy because I don't know what will bother her.  That means I can't go through the McD drive thru without looking up the menu items to see what is in them.  Chick fila has dairy in all of their chicken.  I can't eat the desserts at parties, restaurants, family gatherings.  In fact, I can only eat the produce and meats that are clearly dairy free.  You would not believe how much this change dramatically changes your diet.  You don't sample the snacks at the grocery store.  You can't buy candy bars.  It doesn't mean I don't eat sweets.  I just make them myself using no additives, preservatives, etc. There are a ton of alternatives to dairy that you can experiment with.  It is very hard to eliminate completely until you get used to it.  Even so, I still crave a cheese pizza!

I know there is nothing in here that you probably haven't read before but I have tried just about every diet out there.  I do not think about losing weight now. It just happens.  I'm not sure I'll ever return to diary because of how much better I feel without it.  Give it a try and be diligent about it.  You will see a difference!

Here is a sample of my day:

Breakfast:  Oatmeal with cinnamon, dried cherries, a little brown sugar and rice milk. Lots of coffee with soy creamer
Snack:  muffin, Kashi breakfast bar or apple ( I eat lots of apples)

Lunch: turkey sandwich with avocado, left overs, PBJ (make sure your bread is dairy free), stir fry

Snack: I like snacks! Another apple or other fruit.

Dinner:  Grilled meat, veggie, Quinoa or sweet potato

Snack:  Yes, I'm guilty of late night snacks.  Apple with PB, tortilla chips and salsa, or Kashi bar

So that's it!
Let me know what works for you!

Tuesday, March 15, 2011

I had a moment!

I had a moment today.  Our whole family went to register my two oldest for Kindergarten but my husband drove separately so he could go to work right after.  Well, registration requires writing a book about your child, not really but with two of them, I literally thought my hand would fall off.  By the time we were done, I had a cranky baby and two kids fighting relentlessly.  I was already feeling a little emotional about giving up homeschooling and having my two oldest start school so they were just adding fuel to my fire.  As any mother can attest, a crying baby just rips at your heart when there is nothing you can do.  She was just plain tired.  So I started the car and was ready to scream at my fighters knowing it was the wrong thing to do especially given the 20 minute drive home.  Then it hit me, try some music.

Well, I'm not a very religious person but I feel it is important to teach your children spirituality and religion.  I have questioned my own upbringing in the Catholic faith for most of my life and often struggle with what is best for my children.  A dear friend, more like a second mother, sent me a CD of music that sings various versus from the bible. I have played this for them at home but knew they weren't listening.  I decided I couldn't stand the crying and fighting anymore so I put the CD in and turned up the volume.  Then the moment happened.


Absolute silence.

I waited for something.  Afterall, Teagan never goes more than a minute or two without saying something.

Not a word.

No crying.  No fighting.  They were listening to these powerful words and absorbing it all.  Ellie fell asleep and I had the most peaceful drive home.  They never said a word the whole way and when they got out of the car, they were calm and peaceful.

I don't know what it was about this CD. The talking, the children saying bible versus, the singing, or all of it, but it instantly calmed all 3 children.  It will be interesting to see if it continues to have this soothing effect or if they even start to ask for it.

Anyway, the music is by Steve Green and titled "Two for One"   A special thanks to Judy for sending me this wonderful gift!

Friday, March 11, 2011

The Zero Waste Home: Yahoo! video

I really love the simplicity of their lives and how clean their home is. It has motivated me to work harder at reeducing what we have and don't need.

The Zero Waste Home: Yahoo! video: "This week, I give you more insight into our home with this Yahoo! video. Thank you Yahoo! for illustrating our efforts so beautifully. (la..."

Monday, March 7, 2011

What's for lunch?

It is no secret here that Rooster is a very picky eater.  We are guilty of feeding him peanut butter and jelly for just about every lunch.  The mother in me constantly searches for new things to feed him as I'm sure one day a study will come out showing a connection to peanut butter and jelly consumption and some random disorder.  With school days fast approaching, I'm also looking for foods that are easy to pack.  I think this easy meal will be a staple in their lunch boxes.  If I was really on top of my game today, which I'm not, I would have paired this with a lesson on planets or shapes.

I bought some Back to Nature round crackers for baby Bean which the other two seem to love.  I took some Hormel Honey ham, Rooster likes his sweets, and cut out circles using a glass.  I fed the scraps to
baby Bean who will eat anything these days. I used Horizon's American cheese.  I have no idea if it is any less processed then regular American cheese but I can at least pretend it is healthier.  I then cut banana circles.  As you can see, our Bear made a great sandwich!

Now moms, I didn't forget you!  This is one of my favorite lunches for me and Bean because she'll eat anything.

Take half an avocado and mash it good.

Next mix a tablespoon of Vegenaise or any mayo with the mashed avocado.

Put this in a whole wheat wrap with left over chicken strips or lunch meat. Add a strip of salsa, I love 365 brand.

Then wrap it up and enjoy!

That's what's for lunch today!

My Review of Dansko Volley Canvas - Women's - Shoes - Blue

Originally submitted at

Achieve Dansko comfort in a retro tennis-shoe package with the Dansko Volley Canvas clog, part of the Dansko Sanibel collection. The classic women's Professional closed-back clog silhouette gets a vintage-inspired, vegan-friendly update, with a sturdy canvas upper and rubber toe cap and sidewal...

Love my Danskos

By BTE mom from Lexington,ky on 3/7/2011


5out of 5

Sizing: Feels true to size

Width: Feels true to width

Pros: Comfortable, Versatile, Good Arch Support, Stylish, Durable, Cushions Impact

Cons: Loose fit

Best Uses: Casual Wear

Describe Yourself: Comfort Driven

I love Dansko shoes and these are so cute for Spring. If your not familiar with Dansko you should know that your heal slips out when you walk and this is a proper fit. It puts the pressure to the front of your foot where it should be. That being said, you can't really run in these, they are clog like. But will really help if you have foot problems.


Thursday, March 3, 2011

Decisions...a reflection

Throughout my life, I have struggled with making decisions.  I thought the toughest was deciding whether to attend Michigan State or Central Michigan University.  Years later I was faced with the decision of whether to quit a PhD program or continue to go in debt and miss my family.  I thought those were pretty big decisions and too often then not, I based my decisions on what society thought I ought to do rather than what felt right.  Then I became a parent.

I bought all the gear I was told I would need.  I gave Rooster the whole schedule of vaccines.  I put him in daycare and walked away when those tears clearly called for me.  I continued to push forward in my career because that was what I was suppose to do and I wanted the white picket fence life.  Then things happened.  I started to question the easy road. I started to see that the gear did not make me a good parent.  That at the end of the day, no one really cared if I got that promotion at work.  The only thing that mattered was the welfare of my children and my marriage.  They cared.  They are my life.  It took me a long time to figure this out and it changed the way I make my decisions.

Society tells me that my baby girl should be sleeping in her crib all night but my heart tells me she still needs my warmth and comfort.  Society told me that Rooster should have went to school last year, but my heart told me he wasn't ready.  Society tells me that I should have a big house and two cars but my hands tell me they can't clean that much house.  Most of all, society told me I shouldn't throw away 11 years of government service to raise my children.  We all know society was wrong with that one.  It has taken a long time to learn this, but I now know that I must make decisions based on my best interest and not what "society" deems trendy, normal, or necessary.  So if my child's vaccination schedule doesn't meet the norm, you can bet there is a good reason.  If our house is a little smaller, you can bet there is a good reason and if I'm still breastfeeding a 2 year old, you can bet there is a good reason. 

I write this blog selfishly tonight for me.  I hope it motivates you to continue to make your decisions in life for all the right reasons.  Although I don't regret any of mine, I'm glad I've learned to make them now with my priorities in order.

Wednesday, March 2, 2011

Everyone Needs A Little: I've Cracked The Food Code! Now Go Eat Your Peas....

My cousin wrote this and I found it really informative!

Everyone Needs A Little: I've Cracked The Food Code! Now Go Eat Your Peas....: "I’ve cracked the food code - ok at least in my own home I have. See, I’ve always been a picky eater - beyond picky. I used to take more ti..."