Day 1 of Low Carb

Today is Day 1 of Low Carb (LC) diet. After I had Evan I was back down to only 7 lbs over pre- baby weight, but the stress of not sleeping for over a year and relux/ ear infections, etc meant 15 additional pounds piled on. So here we sit talking about possibly trying for baby #2 and I am 20 lbs heavier than pre- Evan. I’ve been thinking a lot about how to take the weight off and the only diet that has ever worked for me in the past was a low carb diet I did with my parents in the mid-2000’s after I graduated from college. Also, I know I need to really cut back my sugar (=carbs), so a LC diet seems a natural option. Mike is doing it with me which should make it easiest to stick with, but it’s still going to be very tough. So here we are, Day 1! We had a delicious breakfast- scrambled eggs with onion, jalapeno, garlic, red pepper, mushrooms, and mexican cheese. Also avocado and bacon. Serious yum. It was delish. When I put all the food into MyFitness Pal I’ve already exceeded my fat for the day and am almost at my caloric intake! Yikes! But a LC diet is not abouy counting fat and calories, it’s about severely restricing carbs and I’m only at 7 net carbs for the day so far. Out of my 20 allotted. Not too shabby. Wish I had time to make that dream breakfast every morning! It’s almost 2pm and not even close to hungry based on how filling it was. I think we’ll have an early dinner between 4 and 5 and cap off our first day. Wish us luck!

Bring on the Christmas

I’m ready. Or more ready than I’ve been in the past few years anyway! Christmas cards have been mailed, gifts are about 90-95% purchased, and some are even wrapped. I have 9 glorious days off work beginning tomorrow, so I still have 4 more days to finish the last minute shopping, wrapping and preparations for Christmas day at our house. I’m feeling pretty good right about now! We’re heading to Brookfield Zoo with my in- laws tomorrow for the Holiday Lights which I think Evan will love. He is just starting to name animals and make their noises so it should be a very entertaining time!

I am feeling blessed this Christmas and far more in control of life than I felt at this point last year. Things are easier and I’m not nearly as sleep deprived, tired, and forgetful as I was when 2013 began. But to say this was an easy year would be a lie. It was a blessed year and for the most part I counted my lucky stars every night for the many blessings in my life. But I am a big enough person to admit that I struggled. More than I probably let people know. I struggled with Evan’s sicknesses, a severe lack of sleep (18 months now), and trying to balance life with a full time career and family.

I have a few takeaways from 2013:

1) I need sleep. Bad. And when I don’t get it everything is significantly harder for me.

2) I’m so lucky and blessed to have the support of my husband Mike.

3) We are lucky and blessed to have our parents who care so deeply about us and Evan. My in- laws pick up Evan from daycare every Wednesday which gives me one day per week where I am not completely stressed out trying to wrap up and leave work on time and drive through traffic to get Evan before daycare closes. And my mom picks up Evan about twice a month and brings us dinner every time. Usually with enough for leftovers. Seriously, we are so lucky to have 2 sets of amazing parents.

4) I am trying to be more grateful and cognizant of how lucky we are to all be in good health. So many people around me have been diagnosed with cancer this year, luckily I believe all have a good prognosis. But health and life are fragile things and can be stripped away so quickly. It’s something I don’t think about often enough. It’s just another reason to live in the moment and appreciate life.

5) I’m actually happy at work. Since I got my new position in May 2013 I’ve been enjoying my job more than I have in 6 years. I love the team I work with and I love the work I’m doing. It’s a fantastic feeling!

6) I love our house. We’ve lived there for a year and a half now and we’re making memories and creating our own traditions. It truly feels like home.

7) Evan’s smile and laugh are the best thing in life. He can cure any bad mood with the littlest of smiles. He is so sweet and I treasure him so much. I am so proud of him and he is the best thing I have ever done in life. *Wipes tear*

Even though 2013 has been tough at times it has been full of happy memories. I can’t wait to see what the future brings for Mike, Evan, Wrigley and I. Hopefully tons of smiles, laughs, love, and lots and lots of sleep. ❤

Buh bye ear infections!!

Or at least we hope! Evan made it to 11 months without an ear infection and I was beginning to think maybe he had gotten lucky and inherited his dad’s good ears when BAM! 7 months of back to back ear infections began. Eventually they just weren’t even going away, so our pediatrician referred us to the ENT who recommended tubes. I had 3 sets of tubes when I was a kid so I wasn’t too surprised. In fact I had somewhat anticipated ear issues. What I hadn’t anticipated was moving from silent reflux to ear infections. Whew. Poor kid. It’s time for some relief. So I am cautiously optimistic that the tubes will help and little man can be healthy and start focusing on growing! Then maybe mommy & daddy can get some sleep and then maybe, eventually start to think a second baby might be possible. Maybe……

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Schmidt or Tommy Fresh

New Girl and Parks and Recreation… 2 of my favorite shows! Tonight while watching Parks and Rec I thought, I would love to be friends with Tom Haverford. He makes me laugh, I love his musings of Tom Haverfoods, “Muffins are… Naked Cupcakes”, and his general musings on life, “At the risk bragging, one of the things I’m best at is riding coattails. Behind every successful man is me, smiling and taking partial credit.” Seriously, where do I sign up to be friends with Tom Haverford? He makes me LOL.

Then, on the other hand… is another of my favorites. Schmidt from New Girl. He is honest, witty, and clever! He always has a definitive stance to share… “Pine has no place in this loft. It’s the wood of poor people and outhouses.” He isn’t afraid to be himself and he isn’t ashamed of much, “Damn it! I can’t find my driving moccasins anywhere.” And in the very weirdest of  twists, sometimes I can see a bit of myself in Schmidt, “Words that have never been used to describe Schmidt: spontaneous, flexible, easygoing. I’m like a Marine.” Yep, sounds a bit like me sometimes.

So who would I want as my friend? The cute, funny, superficial, creative Tom Haverford or the clever, sharp-witted, self- loving Schmidt? Tough call… both highly entertaining… neither would probably ask me about my day or want to hear about my mundane non- sitcom life… so who to choose… hmmm…

I choose BOTH! I’m greedy in my fantasy world and they would both make me laugh til I CRY, that I’m sure of. But I don’t think they would be friends so I will have to hang out with them separately in my dream world.

I leave you with this quote from Schmidt: “Know this: you’re not the only one that’s hurting here, Jessica Day. The economy stinks, bees are dying, and movies are pretty much all sequels now.” (Episode 1.23, “Backslide”)

Wait… bees are dying?

Dabbling

I am a dabbler. I like lots of things, but I’m not an expert in any of them. I enjoy wine, I love fine foods, I cook, bake, craft, read, kayak, I’m intrigued by holistic wellness (massage, chiropractic, accupuncture, supplements, meditation), I love flowers and floral arrangements, I’m interested in learning more about photography ever since we bought a nice DSLR camera last year… These are just a few of my interests. But I spread myself so thin that I never have a chance to fully immerse myself in any of them. Here is a perfect example. I’ve recently acquired a sewing machine because I wanted to get into sewing simple things like curtains, sheets, pillow cases, blankets, etc. I did make 2 receiving blankets for Evan before he was born, with a lot of help from my mom, and even some help from Mike to figure out the machine when my mom wasn’t around to help. But as of today I’m not sure I can even thread the sewing machine properly. I haven’t used it on a regular basis to really ingrain the steps in my head. I had about 10 projects I wanted to sew when I first got it and I even have the material for some beautiful wall hangings that I intended to put in Evan’s room. But it’s all still sitting in pieces in the basement, just another reminder of all my unfinished ideas. I develop these gradiose plans of new hobbies, activities, or interests and then I feel guilty when I don’t follow through and the luster fades. Why can’t I commit? Why can’t I follow through? One of my goals for 2013 is to focus on one thing at a time, finish it, and move on to the next. The first of my goals is to put together the wall hangings for Evan’s room. There is blank space on a main wall just waiting for a fantastic nautical themed wall hanging and I WILL fill that space! I guess I should be thankful that my life is full and rich and give myself a break. I just wish I had a lot more time so I could turn my dabbling into doing! I suppose this day in age, with many more full time working moms trying to balance work, family, and time for ourselves there are probably a lot of women out there feeling the same way. We should all be proud of how much we accomplish in any given day, week, month, or year. I suppose I’d rather dabble than not partake at all!