5.22.2015

Weight Loss Journey - May 2015

There I am.  In my current incarnation, 46lbs lighter then when I started.  I've been on my weight loss journey since September 2014, that's 8 months now.  Almost to the day, actually! The journey has been amazing and I've learned so much about myself.  I've learned that I have a tough as nails sense of dedication.  If I didn't I don't think I would be where I am today.  I love that this journey is visible to my kids, especially my little girl.  Although she'll occasionally comment and say things like, "mommy you look skinny,"  she more often says things like "mommy you are strong" or "mommy I want to be strong like you one day."  Those are the comments that make me smile.  Skinnier then I was before, is like the side effect, so to speak.  I started my journey wanting to be smaller, skinnier if you will, and healthier then I was.  As my training progressed and the weight started coming off my perspective changed.  Yes, being smaller is fabulous but its nothing compared to my energy, stamina, self-confidence and strength.  Those things are priceless.  My journey is not over, I have a little bit more to go to reach my goal then my focus will shift to building up my muscle and tightening things up.  

So yes I'm down 46lbs today!!!!!  I cannot believe that number.  It's huge, its more then my little girls weight!  About a month ago I went through my closet and, finally, removed all my big clothes.  Most of my clothes were big, like 95% of my clothes.  I kept trying to wear them with the addition of belts or sweaters to hide all the extra space.  I looked weird in my clothes.  The few things I did have that actually fit were very few.  Since clearing out my clothes I've bought a few inexpensive pieces to fill the gap and give me some variety in clothing.  I bought 4 pairs of jeans and 2 skirts from Forever 21!  I cannot believe I can buy clothes from Forever 21 -  Woot!!!  They are the price point I want to deal with at the moment because I feel like my body is still changing and I don't want to invest in quality pieces that I may not fit into in a couple of months.  I also picked up some new work out pants and shorts, for the summer, at Old Navy.  Typically I just cut up my old jeans into jorts for the summer, and I still did to my smaller big jeans but I HAVE to wear a belt and i'm cool with it since its comfy, worn and baggy.  But mostly I can't because my old pants are way to big.  Let me put it into perspective, the day I started my journey I was in a 12/14 and i'm currently in a 2/4.  WTF!  So clothing right now is not an investment for me, its totally transitional and I'm just dealing with minimal pieces and the few things I can still wear (because baggy sweaters are cool, right?) I mix it in.  
That photo up there is a side by side comparison of me, taken a year apart in the same dress (drawstrings are an amazing thing!).  I can hardly believe that is me.  I can hardly believe I somehow thought that dress fit me in 2014!  Ugh.  When I look at that photo I cannot believe that is me.  I cannot believe that I let myself get to that weight, however the before photo was taken in March 2014 over the course of the summer of 2014 I gained an additional 10lbs!!!  So the before picture is still lighter then I was when I started my journey.  I'm proud of where I've gotten to and i'm super motivated to get to my actual goal.  

My health feels amazing.  My body feels great, I don't get winded as quickly, I don't get much aches and pains (unless its from a workout) and I get excited to do outdoorsy things.  I've been told by friends that my journey has inspired them to a commit to a journey of their own and that is amazing.  To be that inspiration for another human being is warming for me.  Everyone has that moment when they feel that they need to make a change in their own life.  Wether that moment comes from seeing a photo of themselves and them not being what they thought they were, or seeing a friend/person they know make that lifestyle change.  And this is, most definitely a lifestyle change first and foremost.  I've been to the other end and I know I never, ever want to go back there.  I want to be healthy.  I want to be strong.  I want to be fit.  Not just for me but for my family.  If I inspire others along the way that is wonderful.  

Everyone deserves the best for themselves.

.....the journey continues!

5.01.2015

Spring Break

Spring break came and went this year.  Technically we had two weeks of spring break in our household.  Crash goes to a pre-k that's part of a private K-8 AND my boys are in the public school system.  Thus, two back to back weeks of spring break.  

Spring break with my daughter was pretty low key.  Just playing at home, going to the park and just fun hanging out time.  With my boys it was a little tricky because Crash goes to afternoon pre-k so we had to revolve our days around drop off and pick up.  She did spend two days at home with us and enjoyed the beach and zoo with our friends.  During our second week of break we had some seriously gorgeous days, the temps were cool but the sun was out in full force.

Golden Gardens is a fabulous beach and park not to far from our house.  The kids love going there and we'll go year round.  The beach view is beautiful you see the Ballard marina, Magnolia and even some islands.  Unlike many other beaches in the area the sand is actually nice and soft but there are lots of charcoal bits scattered about, especially during the summer, due to evening bonfires (which are fun in its on rite!)    There is also a fabulous playground steps from the sand so that's pretty awesome as well.  Whenever we head to Golden Gardens we really do make an afternoon of it.  The kids were super excited to head to the beach during Spring break.  Crash's lovely friend and my friend joined us and they spent hours upon hours playing in the sand, digging and building and looking for shells.  The boys indulged in the playground and the girls couldn't even be bothered!  

We also visited the zoo during Spring break.  The Seattle zoo is pretty big and very  nice.  And on this day it was beautiful.  It was helpful that my friend had her prime card so we got in for $5/pp!!!!  Score! We didn't get to see the tiger cubs but that's okay, we had a great time nonetheless.  As usual Crash went crazy when we got to the wolves, which are her favorite animals.  She stood there and howled and howled and howled.  She's so loud its nuts.  We went into the aviary area and it was filled with lots of love bird, cockatoo type birds.  I was a little afraid I would get poo'd on, but it was all good.  While in the aviary we noticed you could buy a seed stick for $1, which we did and boy do those birds know what those sticks are!  They immediately came swooping down, landing on your hand or arm and just ate that thing clean!
I had nice days with the boys while Crash was at school.  One of their favorite days was when I took them to the mall.  We don't do the mall often, but I thought they'd enjoy it since they had been saving their allowance and I knew there was a Game Stop at the mall.  Yep, they were excited when I broke the news to them.  Even bigger surprise was when they went to pay I paid for their games.  We stopped into Sees candy to check out all the Easter sale candy and the sales girl offered us a sample.  i expected a small piece of chocolate but instead the boys each received a giant bag of jelly beans (and hot damn are their jelly beans yummy!!!!) AND a chocolate bunny!  Wow!  I received a delicious brown sugar cream chocolate egg.   I need to remember that egg for next year because I was impressed buy it and normally im not a cream filled chocolate person.

All in all I think Spring Break was successful.  The kids all got a lot of rest and relaxation, plus we got out of the house and did things together and for me 2 weeks of break was fine.  It gave me time to chill with the kids more and that's always a good thing.






4.03.2015

Lately - 04032015

I've been very bad at updating lately.  C'est le vie - no excuses just living life.

Life has been great.  I've been doing my thing, taking care of me and my family.  Spring break is around the corner and for the first time Crash's break DOES NOT coincide with Big Red and Donx's break.  It totally sucks, but this is what happens when one kid's school aligns with the private school calendar and not the public school calendar.  This will be the only year this ever happens.  I haven't really planned anything to exciting for the upcoming vacations.  Just lots of movie time, baking, board games and on sunny days beaches and parks.

We've had some amazing weather lately.  The sun feels so good after months of gray skies.  Temperature wise its not getting much higher then the low 60s but it feels amazing.
There was one glorious day last week.  I dropped off my tiniest little at preschool, grabbed myself a Stumptown Cold Brew and headed home to curl up in the sun and relax with a book.  The sunshine has my heart aching for summer!  The great thing about living in Seattle is when there is even the teeniest hint of sunshine its shorts and outdoor life living.  I love it so much!

Years ago the boys each received an Easy Bake Oven for Christmas.  We used it often when they were small but the last couple of years its been packed away.  I nearly forgot about them until recently and I introduced it to Crash.  She was beyond excited to use it and could hardly wrap her mind around the fact that we were going to bake with a light bulb!
We had so much fun making sugar cookies in the easy bake.  Crash felt so in control with the activity.  She mixed the bater on her own and placed three little drops of dough in the tiny pans and patiently waited for her cookies to bake.  You better believe that this bad boy will be used during Crash's spring vacation.

T's been working long hours lately.  This used to bother me but not anymore.  I've accepted it and as a stay at home mom this is one of the sacrifices you make.  I feel for him, though.  He's sleep deprived and stressed but he does like the challenges he's presented with.  He thrives on the challenge and definitely rises to the occasion.  I'm proud of him, he's grown so much in his career path and I know that whatever is thrown at him he can handle.  T is still riding his bike to work and he really loves it.  I think the bike ride to and from work is perfect for his work life balance.  It really allows him to commit to the time alone and to clear his head before and after the work day.  Plus he gets in some physical activity, nearly every day.  T's office has recently moved as well, for the better.  He was based off of Bainbridge Island, which is a 25 minute ferry commute from the Seattle Waterfront and now his office is right downtown.  Same bike commute just no ferry commute.  He'll venture out to the island maybe 1 a week or every other week but that's no big deal since its no longer a daily doing.  As long as T is digging his job we are all happy.

I've been really trying to enjoy the time with the kids.  They are growing up so quickly and one of their favorite things to do at home is family movie time especially when it involves some sort of fort, popcorn and "movie theater" candy.
We don't do movie theaters often, with 3-kids and 2-adults it can get pretty expensive pretty quick.  So we save the theater trips for extra special family movies.  But because we don't do the theater often many of the movies we can't rent online, that are more recent movies, are brand new for us.  So I feel like we always have choices.  With the boys being 10.5 and 9 we have much more movie choices with them.  We aren't committed to strictly "kid" movies.  Many times Crash falls asleep early or chooses to watch a cartoon movie in her room on a kindle, that allows us to watch things like Divergent or Hunger Games with the boys.  I know every family has movie night together and its a great thing to do.  I will drag on this tradition as long as my kids allow for it.

With the arrival of spring we have a whole new bunch of hurdles to cross.  Like allergies and planning for summer.  Summer.....that's another post for another day.





3.06.2015

Weight Loss Journey - March Update


Since returning from Hawaii my body has been so out of whack.  I haven't gained weight, some daily fluctuation +/- which is normal, rather i've been maintaining my current weight.  This is necessarily a bad thing but its not moving toward my goal.  This has been going on for a month!  A MONTH!

I talked to my trainer about this and realizing what my workout routine is its been determined that its time to readjust the nutrition portion of my journey.  Not eating less but actually eating more.  My usual diet and workout routine are to much in sync now, like my body has become complacent, aka my metabolism needs to be jump started.

To do this I need to increase my macros.  Upping my carbs, fats and proteins which is an overall increase of calories.  I towards my macros not necessarily my calories.  because you know the macros added up equals the calories.  It's strange eating so much MORE carbs and finding good places to find it.  Bready foods are still not my first choice but yes, some times i'll eat some bread or a small bite of pasta but mostly i don't.  One of the biggest changes with this whole "eat more carbs" thing has been my breakfast routine.  As you may already know, my Greek yogurt/chia/honey/fruit combo has been a staple in my morning's for years.  It's my happy place and really gets my day started on the right foot.  But not anymore.  I strive to get my carbs in all by 3pm, which is no easy feat.  My new go to morning staple has become a third of a cup of oatmeal with a little honey, a lot of cinnamon, and a sliced up banana (typically around 70-90g which gives me between 16.5-20g of carbs) and of course a big 'ol mug of protein infused coffee.  

This new nutrition portion of my diet is still new to me, i'm still tweaking and figuring of the correct food choices and what I actually enjoy eating, since you know, I kind of eat the same thing every.single.day.  Not a bad thing, its just what I have to do.

It's been working, so far.  I've had less fluctuation which is good and I have actually gone down.  The real measure for me, that really brings all this home is how my clothes are fitting.  Yes, so many things are to big for me, and I love it but its getting hard to get creative with my to big clothes.  I'm not at a place I really want to start buying new items because my journey is not over.  I've picked up a few pieces to supplement but until another large drop i'm saving my cash and making due with what I already have.

In other news, my elliptical is dead.  There's a slight chance its something we can actually fix on our own, and we'll pry the casing open to take a look but if its not, well, its a good thing we will be receiving our tax returns soon.  Until then i'm sticking to my 2-cardios/day if the weather is nice I can run (ugh!) but most likely i'll probably be doing a series of tabata's to burn enough calories that i'm satisfied with.  

Let the journey roll on......

Here is March 1 progress photo in case you're curious:

2.24.2015

Inner Monologue

I feel as though I'm a good person.  A good wife, mother, daughter and friend.  I do what I can when I can.  If it's possible to drop everything and run to a friends or neighbors need I will but truthfully its not always the case.  But again, I do what I can when I can.  

My life is busy sometimes verging on chaotic.  It's okay, though, I accept it as it is and I go with the flow.  I have to.  I'm the head of the casa and need to make sure that no matter how crazy things get my family has their needs met and the chaos doesn't seem as nuts as it really is.

As a wife I listen, love, respect, provide balance and grow with my husband.
As a mother I listen, love, respect, teach, empathize and create warm, fun and memorable days for my kids.
As a daughter I listen, love, respect, help, teach and continuously learn.
As a friend I listen, love, respect, show compassion, empathize, share and learn.  

All of the above I consider family.  Family to me is not just blood but people I care for.  Friends that double as family is precious.  But sometimes I feel like I let people in then get burned for it.  And maybe I should have just left them as regular friends rather than allowing them into my inner circle.  Live & learn, right?

I don't understand when friends are going through shit and then ice you out rather then accepting your offer to listen.  I've gone through BS like this with more then one friend over the years and I just don't get it.  Maybe its not my place to get but I don't like seeing my friends in any kind of pain and if I can lend an ear and maybe even offer some advice (or not) I'd love to do what I can.  I'm not one to enable and I think my friends know that about me which is maybe why some of these friends turn my offer down.  I understand the need for space and will happily give that.  But when to much time passes I can become concerned.  When I get shut out I can only assume why.  The hot and cold that is put out can be taken questionably.  I feel like its high school bullshit but what can I do.  I'm not going to poke around and be nosey about it.  I'm not going to embrace the need for fishing for answers nor will I feed into false empathy.  I've offered my words of compassion, offered my ear but nothing.  I will not do this everyday.  Maybe twice total and then i'm out, no more reaching for this related problem.  If i'm not needed here I have kids that need me elsewhere.

Ugh.

Like I said, my life is busy.  I do what I can when I can.  I can't be there, on call, for someone who may or may not want my help.  

I try to create balance in my life.  Being present for all those in my life.  Allowing the wheels in my life to roll smoothly.  Coupled with that I've also carved out a great little space for just me, an area that was previously lacking.  Sometimes its tough but I don't strive to make everyone happy, every day all the time.  That's not the point in being a good wife, mother, daughter, or friend.  It's really about the balance because there is no way for everyone to be satisfied all day every day.  

Doing what I do, I feel makes me a good person.  I don't need to be a perfect person nor do I want to be one, I just want to be a good person.  Good people make mistakes, learn from them and improve.  I pick and choose battles typically erring on the side of taking the high road and just backing away.  I choose not to waste energy on people and things that don't need my help or presence.  I divert that energy into other areas of my life areas that will thrive off the energy.  But i'm here if needed and i'll do what I can if I can.  That's all there is to it.

I don't spread myself thin, I know better then to make that amateur mistake.  But i'm here.  I'll listen, i'll love, i'll teach, i'll learn, i'll empathize.

2.09.2015

Update through February 9

So my laptop died. This is the second time I've had a laptop die. This specific laptop was a hand me down MacBook Pro from my husband. I'm grateful for not needing to spend money on a new device but from the day he gave it to me I knew it's days were numbered. There were familiar hums, and excessive heat and fan noises, not to mention weird quirks with the screen illuminating when it felt like it.  It's not even a year and it's dead.  It's expected it's old.  I have an iPad but it's not the same thing.  I honestly hate typing on a screen.

My husband took off to a developer conference in San Francisco on Friday afternoon.  He won't be back until the end of the week.  Spending these days alone with the kids have been fun. It's different now because the boys are much older and we have so many more things we can do now to spend time together.  When T used to travel when the boys were in preschool it was beyond exhausting! Our days started early and ended late and juggling two babies and a full time job was rough. I envied the timeT was away and often wished it was me that got to leave the home front and sleep I disturbed in a hotel.  It made me resent him and his job.  Not so much anymore.  We still have stressful days but it's few and far between and as the kids get older I've learned to appreciate this time with them.  

My weight loss journey is still looking up.  I cam home from Hawaii about 1.5lbs heavier, yes I know that's not much, but I kept track. I'm back on the straight and narrow working out, eating right and generally being as active as I can in any given day.  Life has changed dramatically since losing weight.  All those things people say about feeling energetic is so true.  My energy levels are at its peak, my mood is generally positive (except for when I'm hungry!), and I have so much ambition in any given day it's fantastic.  I want this lifestyle to stay with me for the long haul.  It's important to me to feel this way not specifically for me but for my kids.  I want to keep up with them and do all the things they want me to join in with them.  For me, it makes me feel a lot younger and makes me want to do things I didn't think I would really have the energy to do like try boxing!!!

One of my goals for 2015 was to go through all our stuff and minimize.  I've started the process and am starting with those items I can immediately purge, storing the items I can sell and am planning on spending one day listing all the items i want to sell.  It felt good to drop off a trunk load of items to donation yesterday.  I know there is more and I look forward to go through this process and releasing those items that are unnecessary and putting an end to being slaves to our stuff.

So that's where I've been.  Hopefully I'll get a new MacBook and can update more frequently because this typing on an iPad truly sucks!

1.31.2015

Back From Hawaii

We had a fabulous 2-weeks in Hawaii.  We look forward to our annual trip back to the islands every year and no matter if our visit is 7 days or 20 days its never long enough.  Maybe you know, but nearly all of our family still live on Oahu so the trip is always a reunion of sort.

We spent many hours at the beach and the kids all got a nice golden tan.  I of course got a slight burn first followed by a nice rich tan.  It's always awesome coming back to seattle with a winter tan, we barely need to remind people where we took flight to for a couple of weeks.  Like last year friends of ours flew to the islands with us the only difference was I flew alone with the kids because T was in NYC for the first few days of our HI vacation.  He flew in direct from NY.  

Hawaii in a nutshell was filled with family, friends, lots of beach time, hikes, dinners, cocktails, island time relaxing.  I wouldn't have it any other way.  

The above two photos were taken at the ruins of King Kamehameha III Summer Palace (circa 1845).  The hike was super short, once we realized we were lost aft 2 hours and back tracked our steps!  But we were not giving up until we found the ruins and it was worth it.  A nice amount of the original structure is still there and so are the foot prints of some of the other structures that were also at this location.  What I read is that this is the only remaining ruin of any structure from Kamehameha III's reign.  Well worth this short hike, and one of the highlights was the walk through the amazing bamboo forest.
While looking for the summer palace we missed a crucial fork in the trail and ended up hiking through this amazing forest and mountain.  We peered down a waterfall, followed the water back through its ponds and hiked a big 'ol mountain until we ran out of trail.  We dodged spears of bamboo and scaled giant boulders.  It was amazing.  Then we realized we took a wrong turn, back tracked and started over and found the palace within minutes.  It was the best wrong turn I ever took and you know what, wrong turns are never wrong when it leads you down an amazing adventure!
We spent days upon days at the beach and it was amazing!  There are no words that need to be said about lazily laying about the beach just being free.
One of the greatest things we did was hike the Pu'u Ma'eli'eli trail in Kahaluu.  The hike took about 45-min up and 30-down and we were the only people on the trail until the very end when we saw to ladies starting their trip up as we were on the last leg of ours.  Not going to lie, there were some pretty steep climbs up and at one point there was even a tow rope in place to help you pull yourself up, but nothing I couldn't handle.  I loved every grueling minute of it and actually wish I had time to do the hike once more.  There are 3 pillboxes at the top of the hike.  The first is not exposed to the beautiful coast line but the other two are sitting at the edge of the hillside with the most amazing panaromic views of the windward side. The views stretch past Chinaman's hat all the way to Kailua.  This has got to be one of the best uncovered hiking spots, my research definitely paid off.  Disclaimer:  I have recently learned that this is not a public spot, although people do the hike and if you chose to do so, be respectful, be quiet, be clean and dont bring a ton of people to trample through the property.

I was able to pick up a free 7-day pass for the gym while in Hawaii.  It worked out perfect as I was able to hit the gym every other day for my entire trip and the days I did not go to the gym I chose to hike or jog.  It felt great to keep up with my fitness routine while I was there and was able to walk away with only gaining about 1.5lbs, although my goal was to stay exactly the same.  But 1.5lbs is not bad.