[Fitness] Even when I don’t want to

I have to be honest.

I have a splitting headache.  And I am exhausted because my baby has decided that all four for her first molars must come in at once so sleep is. just. not. happening.  Work is crazy.  My consulting practice is taking off.  And I am trying to write a book (!!!).  I think I overbooked myself.  All I want to do is curl up in bed with a cup of tea and just zone out.  But I can’t.  

My fitbit tells me I have 900 steps to go before I hit my 10k step goal for the day.  I haven’t worked out and I need to lift something heavy….just to prove to myself that I can…that despite feeling like a zombie, I am strong.  

Although my eyelids are heavy, I am reminded of the commitment I made to myself (regarding my health), the commitment I made to the Many Moms blogging posse (to write about fitness and nutrition every tuesday) and the commitment I made to the blog challengers (to write a post every day for thirty days).  

So with that in mind, I am going to post this wee blog, report in to my blog challenge and hit the gym…  

Be well,

jenn

Here is the funny thing about working out…even when I am tired.  Even when I am headachey…even when I was late in my pregnancy and everything seemed like such a chore, I never regretted working out once it was done.  

 

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[Messy Art] Best Mom Present in Town!

First off, I must say that I nanny for the coolest couple ever. I absolutely adore my bosses; they are a pretty cool couple: down to Earth, fun, out-going, NOT lazy, super heroes if you will. They’re awesome, and excellent role models for me as a first time new momma. Some of you might argue I’m not a “new” mama anymore, but I don’t think almost 7 month olds are “old” so I’m still a new mama with a LOT to learn, a LOT hidden under my sleeve, and apparently not tried enough yet, because I still have PLENTY of patience!

This week, it was my boss’s (mom) birthday! Anna (3-1/2 years old) and Carson (1-1/2 years old) absolutely ADORE crafts I put together for them. I have never let Carson paint… I don’t know why. I just feel paint is toxic, even though its clearly not, and he puts EVERYTHING in his mouth still. Anna on the other hand, LOVES painting, but adores cause and affect and why things happen. Lets get two birds with one stone.

photoSO…. you need:
1c. flour
1c. salt
1c. water (or slightly more)
1c. sugar
1c. brown sugar
1c. coconut oil
frames and a mason jar
Food Coloring
Essential Oil of choice (I used 2 drops doTerra OnGuard and 2 drops doTerra Peppermint)

The paint:
flour, salt, water, food coloring
— WHAT FUN! It dries in textures and the salt forms “bubbles”
— Anna had fun with different sizes of paint brushes and Carson had fun experimenting with a brush and later even a sponge!

The hand/foot scrub:
sugar, brown sugar, coconut oil, essential oils (you can also use vanilla extract):
— I ADORE it! Its a rather rough scrub, but I apply it twice during showers to my feet and let it come off as it pleases. After drying, perrrrrrrrrrfect softness!

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[Aromatherapy] Weightloss Week 2 of 6: Grapefruit EO

To start with…..

I’m Getting Marrrrrrrried!!!!!

were-getting-marriedWHAT WHAT WHAT!?!!? THAAAAAAAAAAAAT’s righhhht! Saturday night, my significant other proposed to me! Talk about stoked!  I love it! Next fall, though we haven’t set a date! So now, in addition to loosing weight and getting fit for my next VBAC, I am now getting fit and loosing weight for the wedding and honeymoon as well! I’ll do my best not to completely flood you guys this upcoming year with my crazy planning!

engaged

So nowwwww on to the weight loss!

Last week, I blogged an introduction to Slim and Sassy, a week early. I actually meant to introduce Grapefruit to you first. I used it exclusively this past week; no slim and sassy. I am soooo pleased with two things: 1) caffeine headaches. 2) appetite reduction.

Slim and Sassy does a LOT of things. It has grapefruit included in it, and therefore its natural to assume grapefruit’s benefits would be included in Slim and Sassy’s uses. But here’s the thing, I’m tempted to not start Slim and Sassy this week (which I introduced to you guys last week), and keep to Grapefruit!

What I do? Rub it on my hands and take 5-7 DEEP breaths before eating – anything. A snack, a meal, whatever! Oh my word what a difference! I’ve also stepped back from 2 L of Dr. Pepper a day (yeah I know, whaaaaaat?) to 1 can a day. By next week I hope to be completely off drink caffeine all together. The sodas are the only dietary change I’ve made so far. I know me, if I push it too hard too fast, I’ll crash and burn.

You can also drink 2-7 (start small,  build up) drops in a bottle of water throughout the day. It really does taste good: for me, much less “oily” if in a glass bottle vs. a plastic bottle.

What’s really cool about grapefruit? You can rub it topically on “problem areas” as it disolves fat and cellulite as well! Now, lets go!

You guys start on this grapefruit oils! Did anyone use any Slim & Sassy last week? Is anyone else working toward overall fitness and core strength? Has anyone prepared for a VBAC intentionally? What did you do?

Please feel free to comment with any questions you have about essential oils and use in your home, personal use, or work place… or EMAIL ME (csnoodles@yahoo.com) to inquire about samples, purchase, or enroll in your wholesale account.Please include “DOTERRA OILS” in your subject line.

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100 Miles

I orignally published this on yogapantsandwine.com but I thought that since I was blogging here about fitness and nutrition I would share this blog I wrote about apps that helped me achieve my goal of walking 100 miles earlier this year. Most recently gympact has integrated with fitibit (I have the fitbit flex and I love it) so I am very excited to have my steps count towards my pact. I love hearing about what works for others, so tell me what (if any) apps do you use to stay on track and meet your goals?
Be Well,
jenn

Yoga Pants & Wine

I am a little behind on the whole new years resolution/exercise bandwagon.  Mostly because I have exercised regularly so I did not feel like I *needed* to make a resolution.  However, now that I am home more with the Kiddo it is harder to get in a good workout so I have been trying to think of ways to encourage/strongarm myself into getting off the couch (which, if you have or have had an infant you know how difficult that can be!).

I want to have a goal to work towards.  I “thing” to do, but I don’t yet know what that is, so in the mean time I have jumped headlong into two apps to keep me motivated even when Im not feeling it so much.  The first app is GymPact.  This app allows  you to make a pact to workout a certain number of times a week (I have…

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[Messy Art] Paint Trees and Hot Plates!

Good Saturday morning mamas! How was everyone’s week!? This week has been grueling slow and exhausting for me, and I’m not sure why! Its one of those types of weeks at the end I smile and say “I made it,” and that is joy enough for me! I honestly believe its simply because I’ve cut soft drinks (almost exclusively) and without the added caffeine and sugars, I’m still on my downward plummet. I know it won’t last long, and I know I will overcome this feeling and feel {better} in the long run, but for now, its so challenging!

So, this week my crafts targeted my 3-1/2 year old. Anna actually did hot plate at 2-1/2, though I haven’t tried with my 18 month old. He’s still in the “throw on the floor when I’m done” stage, and you need glass or ceramic plates to do this.

hot plates
Basically, all you need is a microwave, glass or ceramic plate, a microwave, and the fat crayons. You can try the skinny ones on your plate of choice, on the outside edges and see how easily it washes off, but the skinny ones didn’t produce bright vibrant colors like the fat ones for us. Simply stick the plate in the microwave 30 seconds. It should be cool enough for you to carry, but warm to the touch. I told Anna the first time we did it, “it’s hot – don’t touch!” and she never has. A year later, she still asks for hot plates sometimes, and anytime I ever offer to let her do them, she never says no. It’s such a fun cause and effect activity; its fun to see the wax melt on the plate.

To clean, rewarm the plate with either the microwave or hot water, and wash with dawn. Easy!
Another activity we chose this week was tree paints. I chose it because while I wanted something new for Anna, I was much too exhausted to “get messy,” and I didn’t want her mess (that I generally encourage and love!) to annoy and frustrate me which would change her mood as well. I hate putting negative connotation on her fun, when its encouraged and teaching her!

photo 1

I painted the tree for her with a simple brush, and let her use q-tips to “dot” the tree leaves. She absolutely LOVED this activity and could not have been more content!

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Mommy Wars

   You would think after having 4 kids I would be used to the judging and holier than thou attitudes from other parents but sadly it has taken 4 kids until I feel that they have hit me.  This has been on my mind a lot in the last 2 years.  When I was pregnant with Callum I met a group of ladies online and one of them decided to make a smaller private group so that we could all really get to know each other.  The group ended up being 70+ women in the beginning but that is smaller than the 10,000+ parents in the other group.   We were all very close.   We were there for one another through miscarriages, rainbow babies, all our babies being born, siblings added to families, and unfortunately even a SIDS case.  Sometime after May 2012 when all our babies were born there was a topic brought up.  That topic was attachment parenting.  Someone asked who considered themselves to be parenting in the way.  I know that I answered that I considered myself to being in the middle.  I co-slept, breast fed and when out with my family or with just my other kids I would wear Callum in my Moby or Ergo once he got old enough.  Others considered themselves the same as I did.  We just did what was right for our families and didn’t really belong with any label but it was said that you either did attachment parenting or you didn’t there was no in between.   An argument started and a group of people left.  I know that I was hurt because I considered those women my friends.  I let it go as best as I could and enjoyed the conversations and friendship with the other ladies and still do today. 

     Last week I was struck again by something that also hurt.  I reposted an article about the measles vaccine.  I was just sharing the information that I thought would be helpful to someone.  I know that I have friends that don’t believe in vaccines and that is fine.  I do my research and talk to my husband and we decide what is best for our families.  I don’t blindly let things be put into our bodies.  I’ve done that before with the Navy the only way you get out of vaccines is because of allergies (Thank you latex allergy for getting me out of the small pox and anthrax vaccines).  I had a friend say that the article was silly and then went on posting thing to my wall that were an obvious copy and paste and even argued with my sister who is a nurse.   It hurt since I felt she wasn’t taking my thoughts and feelings into consideration.  When my non-vax friends post articles I read the articles.  I never claim to know everything and I might just learn something new and change my mind.  I guess that is where we are all different. 

    I don’t really fall into labels I just do the best I can for my kids.  I try to keep my opinions to myself and if I do give advice, hopefully helpful, I do it with love because I have made so many mistakes I am just trying to keep others from doing the same thing.   I feel as long as you meet their needs to the best of your ability then you are doing a great job so basically it doesn’t matter how you choose to feed your baby, if you choose to vaccinate or not, circumcise or not, pierce their ears at a young age or what until they can decide, co-sleep or not, use cloth diapers or not.  We as moms shouldn’t judge one another we should encourage and be a cheerleader for one another.  We already have enough on our plates without having to worry about if other women are judging us silently or even some not so silently because of this I now don’t talk about these things unless I feel comfortable around a person and know they won’t judge me.     Have you been a victim of the mommy war going on?  How do you handle it? 

    On a final note I want to wish a belated Happy Birthday to one of the best moms I know, my best friend of almost 20 years.  Thank you for being the best friend a girl could ever ask for and for always being there for your friends and family without judgment!   

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[Aromatherapy] Weight Loss Week 1 of 6

Well ladies, the time has official come. I could write a whole blog post on my labor and delivery six months ago, but long story short, it did not go as planned! My birth plan came in handy, and I was still given my baby moments after she was born, but I waved buh-bye to daddy cord cutting, mirror watching birth, touching a crowning head, immediate chest time, and many more “wants,” all thanks to an emergency caesarian. So now, I must focus mentally and physically on future VBACs. At this point, I am an awesome candidate assuming I can loose a bit more BMI (my eating has gone downhill fast since pregnancy), and I wait about 14 more months before becoming pregnant again.

Slim&Sassy Skinny Wrap

So, I have decided to start a 6-week journey with you guys about 6 doTerra Essential Oils that I will be using on my exercise and weight loss agenda. I’m not looking to loose 15 pounds in a week. I’m not looking to loose 10 pounds and then drop off. I’m not looking to binge or fast. In fact, I’m not just working toward weight loss. Instead, I am looking at weight loss, body fat reduction, heart health, uterine health and strengthening, cardiac health, and later success with a VBAC.

As I begin my process, I am cutting out soft drinks (slowly! I’m down to one canned Dr. Pepper and a Monster every day), and walking. Pre-pregnancy I was an avid fitness enthusiast. But now, my focus is more so on spending time with my daughter and husband, and by the time she’s down at night, I crash. So, I’ve got to get these refined sugars and whatnot under control so my energy levels even out! THIS is why I’m choosing Slim and Sassy for my first EO discussion.

Slim and Sassy is a metabolic blend doTerra put out on their shelves that contains Cinnamon, Ginger, Peppermint, Grapefruit, and Lemon. It isn’t a “magic pill” or a “super supplement” some other weight loss programs claim themselves to be. It does, however, work as a supplement.

slimandsassy

DoTerra suggests  16oz water to 8 drops of oil. This is way too strong for me. I’m not sure if its because I’m just starting with this oil, if I’m not a fan of Ginger and Cinnamon (which, I’m not) or what… but it burns if it touches my lip, and it does NOT encourage me to drink more water! I want my weight loss journey to be enjoyable; not forced, stressful, nasty, or dreaded. So, while I encourage you to *try* it that way and see if you can maintain suggestion…. There are other uses and applications you can go with!

Uses:
Helps manage appetite between meals
Lifts mood
Boosts energy
Long term weight loss, not short burst, not water weight loss
Organic and whole
Helps with Hydration
Immunity boosts
Stomach and GI calming
Helps balance blood sugar
Inhibits new fat cells from forming (adipogenesis)
GREAT for diabetics
Enhances sense of fullness after eating
Metabolic boost

Applications
8 drops per 16 oz (regular size bottle) of water
4 drops per shot glass of water
Drop on back of tongue a few times a day (my application!)
Topically diluted in coconut or olive oil on skin (stomach, thighs, arms) (my application!)
Wrap your skin after application for 1-8 hours with saran wrap!
Inhaled (helps with appetite) (my application!) – rub on hands and inhale deeply

So, as I taper off on the caffeine and carbonated soft drinks, and begin incorporating more exercise into my daily routine (leg lifts while on the floor with my daughter, side stretches while cooking, calf raises while showering, dips while watching a movie for the kids), this oil blend will be an important one to keep on the lookout for!

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[Nutrition] Do you meal plan?

Confession time: I am a junk food junkie.  I also prefer to eat out…pretty much whenever.  The reasons for this are long and pretty boring so I will spare you those details but the bottom line is that overly processed junk and constant  eating out are bad not only for my health and waistline but also for the family budget, so I meal plan.  Historically I have done weekly meal plans but I am experiment with a plan for the month this time around.

Why monthly?  I found it does not take much for time for me to plug in four weeks worth of information than it does for just the week and since I do this during my LO’s nap…I am hoping this frees up those precious hours for other activities (like a nap for myself? ).

I do most of my meal planning from other blogs, and there are hundreds of them out there, and there are a bunch of whole foods and paleo ones that I especially like.  I usually pick one blog and build the meal plan around the recipes available there.  I have two reasons for that.  First, because a lot of blogs categorize out their recipes based on chicken, beef, veggie etc, its easy to just surf around the site and plug in the spreadsheet and second, as the month (or week) moves along I don’t have to wonder where I got the recipe from if I have questions or forgot something.  I love me a one-stop shop.

I use an excel spreadsheet that lists out the main dish and what sides.  Since we have a garden, I usually assume the side will be a garden veggies or a salad, occasionally brown rice or quinoa. I only plan for dinners, breakfast for me is usually eggs, a green smoothie or a bananas and almond butter.  Lunch is usually leftovers.  I post the meal plan on the fridge so my hubby knows whats up and its not so subtle reminder for me.  I also allot days for dealing with leftovers and for going on…because having one night a week when I am not responsible for dishes is one of my favorite luxuries. Image

Last month was an expensive month for us.  One of our cats had to have emergency surgery…on a weekend, we took a family vacation and we replaced my ailing cell phone and went with a discount plan that required that we purchase the phone outright.  To balance out last months spend-a-thon I am looking at creating a meal plan that is going to be especially budget friendly.  This month I am using Paleo On a Budget as my muse.  I based my plan around what I already had on hand (several packages of frozen chicken breast, a frozen steak and salmon fillets) so the only protein I had to purchase for this week was some sausage.  Of the pork and beef recipes I selected, the majority of them used ground meats which is both less expensive and can be easily stretched into several meals.

Do you meal plan?  What strategies do you use?  What sites do you love?

Be Well,

Jenn

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Messy Learning, Messy Art, Messy FUN! [Moon Sand]

During the week I nanny an incredibly smart, and fast learning 3-1/2 year old, a very active and eager 1-1/2 year old, and my own very quick 6-month old. Contrary to popular belief, this requires a bit of planning. Otherwise, I would have very long weeks with very bored kids, and I would end my week very stressed. Aside from headaches or pure exhaustion, I am always eager to go back to work! I attribute that to planning!

Every week I pick 4-5 activities that I think will hold their interest longer than 5 minutes. Sometimes I succeed. Sometimes I fail. On my fail days, it can get long, but make believe with Little People princess castle, the zoo, or the little people sounds house often suffices. Taking nature walks and scavenger hunts, and acting out stories like Going on a Bear Hunt through the woods saves the day. Occasionally the kids will watch a full movie with some popcorn, but not usually. And I’m okay with that!

This past week, we tried something new. Moon Sand. Can I say FUN! This lasted almost a whole week!

moonsand1

All I needed was a bin, some flour, and some baby oil. The ratio is said to be 8 cups flour to 1 cup oil. I did that, but for my personal fun, aside from the kids, it was too flaky. Maybe I should have used All-Purpose Flour. I don’t know. But, I added some more oil; possibly a whole ‘nother cup? And it was PERFECT.

We did take this messy art outside, and since unbaked bread dough is bad for animals, I made sure to spray down where we played very good since the composition is so similiar and I didn’t want the animals or their cats getting sick.

So out the door we went. They played with this alone for almost forty five minutes! Then we swang, took a nature walk, and they were ready to come inside. I saved the mixture, and the following day added some cheese grated pink chalk to the mix for color. Can I say a whole new day!?!?

moonsand2
Again, it was an easy 45 minutes of play for the three year old, and the 1-1/2 year old put some in his sand table which was so much fun. While I pushed Anna and baby Kara in the swing, he was amazed and mesmerized. The sand table, with water, sand, and now some of this moon sand….. it was like I’d given that boy a million bucks. He had SO much fun watching the differences when water was added, watching the pink chalk dissolve into the water, molding this sand and watching his sand fall apart in his fingers….

After play time, the lid went back on again as I dared to venture for a third day of fun with this new activity!

moonsand3
Day 3 and 4 didnt last quite as long, 30 minutes at a time, but Ann asked to play with “baby powder” several times a day. I added glitter, Lavender EO, and let her play with her playdoh toys in her moon sand. She loved its mouldability while still being sand. This will be  a great activity to bring back in a few more weeks, especially now that she has started school and will continue learning more about the five senses!

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[Aromatherapy] For the Mom!

Usually, my blog posts have and will revolve around medicinal purposes, how to treat naturally, as well concentrating on kids and your loved ones… today, I want to concentrate on you.

What is with today’s moms? Why are we all seemingly in competition with one another? Maybe it’s always been this way, and since I’m a first time mom of 6 months, and since I’m mid twenties, I’ve just never been in this crowd before. But, what I’m seeing astonishes me! I am a cloth diapering, breast feeding, vaccinating, messy art loving, educational diva, baby wearing, extended rear facing, attachment parenting mama. That does not mean formula feeding, non vaccinating, tv supporting, stroller loving, turn kid around at one year old, spanking mamas are wrong and bad! What is with us? Why are we all in competition? I know I for one don’t care what Lucy across the street, Mary in the back yard, or Simon the single dad next door are doing. So long as we love our kids, feed our kids, and clothe our kids….. aren’t we all in this for the same goal?

Anywho, last night I fell asleep with a terrible headache. I dreamed some crazy dreams, and it was weird because I was mom but I wasn’t. I was “looking in” and there, but no one could see me. Daddy had baby Kara on his lap watching Monsters’ Inc. and my mom was there folding baby clothes on the couch. Weird? Yeah. I also woke up at 8:30 this morning instead of 6:45, and immediately thought to myself… “Oh no! I won’t have time to play today!” Needless to say, I don’t have to be at work until 11:30, so that was still 2-1/2 hours until I needed to leave. Why did I feel like this? Kara was happy, jabbering away in her crib, and I was panicked.

I reached over on the bedside table, and picked up my Balance oil.

uses-for-balance-essential-oil

I rubbed three drops on the bottom of each foot and between my toes. Overkill? Oh yeah, but I was so panicked about loosing an hour and fifteen minutes with her (and therefore in my mind we were going to loose our ball sensory time, her nap would be ruined so I wouldn’t get my online work done, her “happy excer-saucer time” was ruined so dishes wouldn’t be washed) I didn’t care! Now that I have Balance on one food, and “Mean People Suck” as quoted from Camp Wander on the other foot, Kara and I are both happy. We played with her sensory balls while she was in her exersaucer, and she’s happily playing with a diaper sitting here beside me as I type this now. Now that I’m happy, she’s happy, we’re relaxed, and the important things got done – time with my daughter!

NO MOM is a “bad” mom when they do everything in their power to love their child. Who cares if parents use TV as babysitters sometimes? Who says TV is bad in moderation? Who cares if parents HATE picking up messes and therefore only let their LO’s paint while in a highchair or use “no mess” art supplies? Who cares if a baby is worn or strollered all the time? Why the bashing to moms who choose formula, c-sections, or medications? WHO CARES? Does it affect you? Does it cause harm? Does it mean baby is in danger or unloved? If not, lets focus on education and support, lets focus on time spent with our own LO’s, and being grateful for all God has given us! ❤

Please feel free to comment with any questions you have about essential oils and use in your home, or EMAIL ME (csnoodles@yahoo.com) to inquire about samples, purchase, or enroll in your wholesale account.

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