Tuesday, April 8, 2014

Sickies and the Prom!

Greetings, Lovelies!
 
Have you all had a chance to get to know the stomach bug that is floating around? He's a total jerk, and spent an unwelcome week at our house. On the upside, that was the easiest ten pounds I ever lost OVERNIGHT...too bad it will all come back with a vengeance once I can keep something down besides spit. (If you've had this gem, you totally get this comment.)
 
 
In other news I chaperoned prom the other evening with some of the best co-workers around.
 
Photo: Best Prom Dates a girl could ask for
 
We took this picture for two reasons. One because were amazing, the other to prove that we were all awake after 11 PM. I didn't feel nearly as bad though when the teenagers were laying down on the floor outside of the ballroom at 10:30.  If they cant hang, then I don't feel nearly as bad admitting I was asleep before we even got out of the parking lot. I am not meant to stay awake until midnight, I'm just not. Especially not when I wake up at 5 AM to go to work, that's just too long of a day. I barely had enough energy to do the running man with a student and dance in the corner while my husband hid embarrassed of me. 
 
All in all Im glad the kiddos had fun and were so well behaved, but I am really glad prom night only comes around once a year. I still haven't recovered from my late night out!
 
Please tell me Im not the only old lady out there?
 
 
 


Wednesday, March 19, 2014

Easy Herb Stuffed Chicken

The other night for dinner I wanted something relatively healthy but I also wanted something that didn't taste healthy. I had seen one too many Olive Garden commercials that day and was craving something Italian.
 
I think I've told you all before I married the pickiest husband on the planet, so sometimes finding something new to make can be a bit iffy.  I had a really yummy looking stuffed chicken on my pinterest board, but I knew stuffing it with cheese would not sit with hubs. But I was intrigued enough to come up with my own stuffed chicken, sans cheese.
 
 
Ingredients:
4 thin sliced chicken breasts (about 1/4 inch thick)
Fresh Rosemary- about 1 tablespoon
Fresh thyme- about 1 tablespoon
Garlic- I used four cloves
1 Tbsp Butter
Panko Bread Crumbs
Egg
Parmesan Cheese
 
1. Start by chopping up the rosemary and thyme. Place into a small bowl and grate in fresh garlic. Add butter and microwave for 15-30 seconds, just enough to melt the butter.
 

 
2. If you have thick chicken breasts, place them between two sheets of parchment paper and pound them to an even thickness around 1/4 inch thick.  Spread the garlic/herb/butter mix onto one side of the chicken breast.
 
3. Roll up the chicken, keeping the herb mix in the middle.
 
 
4. In one bowl beat together two eggs. In a separate bowl put some Panko bread crumbs mixed with about 1/2 cup of parmesan cheese.
 

 
5. Dip the rolled up chicken into the egg, then coat in breadcrumb/cheese mixture. I also threw some leftover thyme and rosemary into the breadcrumbs just to spice them up a bit. Make sure to really coat the chicken, including the edges.
 
6. Place into a greased baking dish.  Bake at 400 for 20-25 minutes or until chicken is no longer pink.
 
 
That's all she wrote!
 
I ate mine with green beans (yes they were canned, don't judge me). The hubs had his with buttered noodles. We also had bread, but truth be told I was so full from the chicken I didn't even eat mine.  I made four chicken breasts and the hubs ate two and a half of them. It was that good.
 
 
 
Do you have a fun stuffed chicken recipe I should try? Leave me the link and I promise to check it out!
 
 
 
 


Monday, March 17, 2014

Holy Crap- I've lost 10 Pounds!!

Sorry things have been a little silent around these parts...I've been spending my free time doing something I've always wanted to do but never really stuck with because well, its hard. I'm talking about working out. As embarrassing as it is to admit I couldn't even run up two flights of steps without gasping for air like it was my job. I didn't have the energy to work out and I had zero desire to run any type of distance unless I was being chased by zombies.

Well, that is no more my lovelies. I've been literally working my butt off.
Running, spinning, zumba, counting calories- the whole nine yards. It sucks, but I'm doing it and I'm not going to quit until I hit my goal.
 
Here's the nasty dirty truth. January 15th I weighed myself and I was at 190 pounds. Yeah, you read that right. I was spending so much time in the mornings trying to find something that didn't make me look fat or that wasn't too tight- it was stressful and overwhelming and I was over it. So I decided that I was going to change because I was sick of the way I looked and sick of the way I felt.

I was embarrassed to go places with my husband (who I outweigh, which DOESNT help the old self esteem AT ALL) because I didn't like the way I looked. I couldn't really play with Grayson because I would get out of breath, and I didn't want that to be the case come spring and summer when we could play outside and run around.
 
I started making green smoothies, I downloaded the couch to five K, and I bought a fitbit. Running has never really been a fun thing for me, I get bored quick, but we have a treadmill so off I ran.  A few weeks in (which is longer than I'd ever stuck with the running thing) I bought my first pair of real running shoes. Now there really was no turning back because, damn, those things were expensive. I signed up for a 5K at the end of May, so I had no choice but to stick to the C25K program because I'm running with people I work with and they will in no way, shape, or form let me back out.
 
Then the diet contest at work started and I really started counting calories. I bought the scale that goes with the fitbit so I really couldn't flub my results. I started going to Zumba at least twice a week. (PS- I've learned that I have ZERO rhythm- its rather sad.) It took seven weeks, but I'm down ten pounds as of today.
 
Before:
January 26th, 2014 Weight: 190 lbs.
 

(I'm pretty bad at the bathroom selfie- but it is what it is!)
 
I also took some measurements:
L Arm: 14.5 in
R Arm: 14.25 in
Bust: 41.5 in
Waist:  37 in
Hips: 42 in
L Thigh: 26 1/4 in
R Thigh: 26.5 in
Upper Thighs: 43 in
 
- 10 pounds (technically 11- woo!!)
 
March 15, 2014 179 lbs
 

 
Yep, still awkward with the selfies.
 
L Arm: 13 1/4 in
R Arm: 13.5 in
Bust: 40 in
Waist:  34 in
Hips: 40 3/4 in
L Thigh: 25 in
R Thigh: 25.5 in
Upper Thighs: 41.5 in
 
 Total inches lost: 11.5 inches.
 
My goal is 140- so a total of 50 pounds. Im down 11, so only 39 more to go!
 
Are you on a weight loss mission? Have any tips that may come in handy? Please feel free to share them with me- lord knows Ill take all the help and motivation I can get!
 

Monday, February 24, 2014

Mom Guilt- and getting over it.

So the hubs came home on Tuesday night and not a moment too soon. Single parent hood is not for me, even if this week we realized that Daddy is the one who makes the messes around our house.
 
After spending a whole week with Grayson he has become sort of attached at my hip, like lost it when I dropped him off at Nanas to go to work attached. Normally? The kid tells me to 'GO!' and waves bye faster than I can get his coat off of him. However after a full week of not being able to pee or shower alone this Momma was ready for a little break.  So Thursday night I went to Zumba- alone, for one whole glorious butt kicking hour. As I was walking out the door my kid was inconsolable in tears. Worst Mom Ever, right here.
 
Lovelies, it took all I had to walk down those steps and get into my car.  In reality? I knew he would be fine with his Dad .2 seconds after I walked out of the house. But when a certain blonde haired blue eyed boy is asking me to sit on the couch with him and says "No go, Mama?" Its really hard to leave him. I get this gnawing feeling in my gut, and I know its Mom Guilt.
 
Can we all just agree that Mom Guilt sucks hardcore?
 
In reality, we know our kids will be fine and they don't really need us there but when they want us and we choose (or have to be) somewhere else it seems like the worst feeling in the entire universe.
 
And when I decided to attend a girls night on Friday night with some of the best ladies in the world, I felt even worse. However I knew that if I didn't get out of the house and have some "me time" I would lose my head. So I went, and I had a great time. 
 
Its easy to say that one of the hardest parts of this Mom-Gig is trying to figure out the balance between Grayson time and Me time, and dealing with the dreaded Mom Guilt when I do need a little time to myself. 
 
So tell me ladies, how do you deal with the Mom Guilt? 

Tuesday, February 18, 2014

Survivng- well, attempting to survive.

I've always respected single parents, but until this past week I had never been one.  The hubs is out of town on business and has been since basically last Monday night. One full week of Mommy/Grayson time with pretty much no help and I am B.E.A.T.
 
Seriously single Moms and Dads? WHOLE NEW LEVEL OF RESPECT.
Like there should be a statue somewhere in your honor and free baby sitting available for those moments when you just need a break. Or want to pee alone.
 
Now don't get me wrong, I love my kid and I do enjoy the fact that for the past week I've gotten all the snuggles and all of the mooches and attention.  Maybe its the fact that I'm not used to being a single parent, so I don't know how to accomplish the things that need to get done without help. Like taking the dogs out to go to the bathroom when your toddler is standing on the other side of the door screaming bloody murder, cooking dinner, running down the creaky steep basement stairs to switch laundry, taking a shower when you HAVE to get out the door for work in the next forty minutes, or shoveling the CRAP TON of snow that had to fall this week.  Usually there is someone else in the house to distract the toddler while these activities are taking place, but not this week.
 
So the theme of this week, lovelies, has been survival.  You want to eat four packs of fruit snacks at the front door while I shovel us a path to the car? Eat them.  You want to open and put an entire pack of minion band aids on mommy's legs while she makes dinner? Okay! Mommy needs to do laundry downstairs? Here, lets color with chalk on the kitchen floor! Woo!! Isn't this fun?! Mommy needs to shower, do you want to watch your 30th episode of Caliou in the past four days- SURE!!
 
Sometimes, you pick your battles and other times you don't.
 
I will say that since this week we have not had to send anyone to time out and haven't had any real meltdowns other than at bedtime. Bedtime is Dada time- and we haven't been happy that Daddy isn't here to read stories and play and snuggle before bed. Mix that with a tired toddler and we've had a few swats and "No Mama- DADA!" yells. All it takes is a quick snuggle and a "Momma misses Dadda too, bubba." for him to calm down. Then I distract him with a snack or another Caliou episode (why oh why does my child like this show- that kid is obnoxious) and all is right in toddler world. Our normal 9 PM bedtime has been closer to 11 or even 12 on the nights Daddy wanted to face time. Mommy gets up at 5 for work, so needless to say I am wiped out. I actually went to work on Friday with two different shoes on. Thankfully I keep a pair of  shoes in my closet at work, so I at least had something to change into. That same day one of my students actually told me I looked like I needed a nap, and when teenagers notice you look like the walking dead its a pretty bad sign.
 
I will say that the kid has been a breeze compared to the two neurotic dogs.  They saw a suitcase leave the house and they were not invited on the trip, so they have basically been psycho ever since.  Barking at every single noise (only after it gets dark of course), whining and jumping on a sleeping Grayson at 5:30 AM so I will feed them breakfast, knocking over the trash can every chance they get and refusing to go outside to go to the bathroom.  If I didn't love and adore them, I swear I would put them on the porch with a free sign and call it a day.
 
Hopefully the hubs will get home tomorrow- but if he doesn't please feel free to come over and find me. Ill be the Mommy covered in stickers coming up with reason 75 why I cant stand Caliou.
 
If you cant visit can you at least send wine?!
 


Friday, January 31, 2014

Five on Friday!!

Is it Friday, really!? Thank you, weekend, for coming. You are much needed and much appreciated!! Its been a crazy week- off on Tuesday for -30 wind chills and they are expecting temps in the 40-50 range tomorrow. So we'll all have pneumonia next week- but I'm not going to complain about a little warm up!

Linking up with Darci to share some of the things I've been totally loving lately.
 
 
 

1. Fitness.  The diet contest at work is in full swing.  We take this thing uber serious, we draft teams, set goals, have public weigh ins and basically shame each other into a smaller jeans size or two. It is fabulous.  I really do work with the best people on the planet, so I cant think of better people to be miserable with for nine weeks of dieting in attempts to meet the goals we set.  I'm only trying for seven pounds, but trust me I've got more to lose.  I just don't want to set my goal too high and then not make it, that would be bad.  There is a newsletter and I made the front page a few years ago for getting knocked up to avoid dieting, I will not make front page news again!  This year I do have a few fun gadgets helping me out- the fitbit force and the Fitbit Aria wi-fi scale. I love the Fitbit because it really does help me stick to my goals.  If I see that I only have 3,000 steps in I jump on the treadmill to get the steps up.  If I'm at 4.8 miles, Ill go for a quick run to meet my goal.  It keeps me mindful of how much I am exercising, while also tracking my food intake, calories burned and sleep. If you have a competitive side at all, this is great because it motivates you to hit those goals in black and white.  The scale links wirelessly to the app on my phone, tracking my weight every morning to keep me honest and on track.  If you're thinking about either product, give them a try you will not be disappointed!


Fitbit  Flex  Wireless Activity   Sleep Wristband

2.  Have you guys tried the Mrs. Meyers Clean Day products? I totally wouldn't clean my house as much as I do without this stuff. I'm obsessed with the lavender scent, but I hear the basil is also amazing.  We have the counter spray, hand soap, cleaning concentrate and dish soap.  It smells fantastic in my house. I get mine at Target, and each time I go I add another product to my cleaning bucket.  If Im going to be obsessively buying things, I guess cleaning products aren't a bad way to go?

 
3. My fleece lined leggings from Kiki La'Rue.  If you have not heard of Kiki La Rue, then you must check them out- and this isn't sponsored or anything- I just adore them.  They have the cutest stuff for the most reasonable prices, and they always have sales and specials going on.  I bought my first pair of leggings from them, the vertical twist leggings and I could LIVE in these suckers. They don't ride up, they don't sag down, they are perfect.  I own them in four colors and have been known to put them under my dress pants on cold days.  You cant see through them and the pattern is a fun little add on to boring black leggings.  If you need help with sizes check out the reviews and comments, there is usually tons of info there to help you out.
 
4. Green Smoothies.  I completed a 31 day green smoothie challenge and I feel amazing.  I am not a veggie eater, so I was surprised at this.  I started drinking one a day for breakfast blending up spinach, greek yogurt, ice, strawberries, bananas and blueberries. Its green in color for sure, but the banana hides the taste of the spinach.  So I'm getting all of the benefits of veggies without the nasty taste, win! The best part, they keep me full from 6:30 till I get to eat lunch at 1:00. If you have any good smoothie recipes send them my way, because I'm not about to stop now!
 
5. EOS Lip Balm. seriously? How did I just discover this stuff?  Its awesome, organic AND it actually makes my lips soft.  Plus, you feel like you're getting your moneys worth with the amount you get in each tube. If you haven't tried it, you should. Esp in sweet mint and summer fruit, they're my favorites!
 
 
What new products are you guys loving?
 
 
 
 
 
 

Wednesday, January 22, 2014

Dear Polar Vortex- Suck it.

Now don't get me wrong, I'm not one of those girls who whines all winter long. I live in Pittsburgh, I know its going to get cold. I expect it even. But seriously, the cold we have been experiencing is just beyond ridiculous. 
 
Wind chills in the -20's? Lows of -7 and highs of 9? When the eff did I move to Canada?!
 
 
Today we had a two hour delay- no idea why, it was colder at 9 than it was at 7.  But the reality is, we cant keep closing school because the way its looking we wouldn't see the kiddos until June. I just wish it was socially and professionally acceptable to come to work dressed in a snowsuit with fuzzy slippers and sweats underneath.  Nice dress pants and sub zero temps don't mix.
 
On the upside I am getting to enjoy the Christmas present that my Dad bought me. I asked him for slippers and he bought me these bad boys.
 These gems are called Hot Booties. You pop them into the microwave and the beads/rice/magic inside warms up. Then onto your frozen cold toes they go, and as ridiculous and goofy as they look I do not care.  My feet, which haven't been really warm in two weeks, are toasty and happy. They're not really the easiest things to walk in, but to snuggle under my blankets they are perfect.  My only wish is that I could find a full out body suit that I can microwave and keep warm in. If any of you lovelies know where to find that, please let me know!
 
Stay warm friends!