Friday, February 25, 2011

I'm kicking my own ya mind?

For reals.

I've had four kids in less than five years, and my body looks like it. I'm below my pre-pregnancy weight. In fact, going by my new scale, I'm only 1lb over what I weighed before I even got pregnant with Bubba, almost five years ago. However, my middle is jigglier than a bowl of jello.

**I am being totally honest in this post and I absolutely do not mean to offend anyone by anything that I type but I know that weight/working out/body image are all very sensitive subjects so I just want to reiterate that these are my opinion and my feelings. We are our own worse critic and I know that but I am blogging this to hold myself accountable. **

I recently started watching/doing ''The Shred'' dvd's by Jillian Michaels. Cannot move.

Firstoff while the DVD says ''Lose 20 pounds in 30 days with Jillian's intense workout'', I'm doing this to get into shape.What does that mean? Well to me it means I'd like to have a stomach that doesn't look like I'm 12 weeks pregnant. I'd like to sit without my tummy pooch hanging over my jeans. I'd love it my love handles wanted out of this relationship, mkay? I would love it if the thought of wearing a swimsuit (not a bikini, just a swimsuit) didn't give me an anxiety attack. If you couldn't tell, most if not all, of my issues are with my toning my core muscles. My arms aren't half bad (hello I carry kids for a living) and my legs are weak but I've always had extremely scrawny chicken legs.

So I needed to do something, not to lose a ton of weight but to be in shape and be healthy. Since moving, my lifestyle has become much more sedentary. Mornings that were spent running up and downstairs, hurrying to get kids dressed/fed and to school then carrying a baby while ushering 3 small children up a narrow and steep flight of stairs at the school, then ushering one child and baby back down again only to go back up again 1.5hr later, are no more. Our house here is one story. There is no school, so no hurrying. We get up when we wake up, we eat breakfast when they're hungry. While I haven't gained a ton of weight since moving here, I have definitely become more ''flabby''. My pants/clothes still fit but aren't looking to flattering. It's Texas, it's getting hot already (yesterday it was 84 degrees) and all my short sleeve shirts and tank tops are maternity. I need to buy new clothes but everytime I shop I get discouraged about my pooch.

Cue, Jillian please.

In case you have been living under a rock for the last seven years  you don't know who she is, she is the trainer from The Biggest Loser. She is hard-core yet semi compassionate (in her own way). And I had heard amazing things and people who say great results after using her Shred dvd's at home. For $9 and 25 minutes a day, I really didn't have a reason not to try. If it works, I lose weight and tone. If it doesn't work, I'm out $9. That's what, 2 lattes? Seriously.

So the program is a 22 minute workout that you do everyday for 30 days. There are 3 levels of intensity and you move yourself up to the next level when the current one isn't as challenging. You start with 2 minutes of warm up stretches, then go into a cycle of 3 minutes strength training, 2 minutes cardio, 1 minute abs and without a break for even a sip of water, start the cycle again. You do this 3 times for a total of 18 minutes, then have a cool down period with stretches. Each segment is divided into 30 second increments. So for cardio you do jumping-jacks for 30 seconds, then 30 seconds of butt kicks, then 30 more seconds of jumping jacks, then 30 seconds of butt kicks again. You move straight into crunches, then reverse crunches then right back to strength training which is usually using your arms with free weights while doing lunges at the same time for 30 seconds, then push ups 30 seconds, etc.

Honestly, it doesn't sound bad. 18 minutes of working out, how hard can that be? 30 seconds of jumping-jacks? Puh-lease. Well, it's pretty damn hard. I mean you're trying to tone up/lose weight QUICKLY so to get those results, you have to work hard. I made it through the workout okay. I won't lie, the last 1 minute of abs about killed me. I was sweating, panting and feeling like crap. I wanted to quit and say screw it, I don't need one minute of abs.

But, I didn't quit. When I was feeling like giving up I gave myself a mental pep talk that sounded like this: "Hey dumbass,don't be pathetic. it's 30 freaking seconds of your life, quit bitching and bicycle those legs and crunch". Because even though I wanted to die, it is only 30 seconds. I had four kids, I've had contractions twice that length, without pain meds. I can do it. I know I can. But I had to really really push myself and remind myself that while it would feel like hell, it was only hell for 30 seconds.

And it worked. My pep-talk that is. I've only done the workout twice and today, it was a bit easier. I guess it's working too! Granted I am so sore that squatting down to put Peanut's shoes on makes me cringe. I have to brace myself when standing up after sitting in a chair for more than so, oh 15 seconds. But if it takes care of the flab, it's worth it! And for what it's worth, in the workout you LITERALLY do ''butt kicks'' which is kicking back, one leg at a time and kicking your own ass. Nice.

Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Sweet as Sugar!

A few weeks ago my very good friend {we've been friends since high school!} Katie, blogger of Our Life with the Littles asked me if Miss Sweetcheeks would be interested in modeling some crochet leg warmers that she was making for her Etsy shop. Sissy would get to keep the leg warmers and headband in exchange for a little bit of work. Katie needed Sissy to model those leg warmers and headband, and for me to catch some good photos of her doing it.

Acting as her agent, I said "Yes!". Katie has some super cute handmade items in her Etsy shop: Sweet as Sugar and I couldn't pass up the deal. I love handmade items. I especially love handmade crochet/knit items and given the fact that I don't know how to crochet (or knit) I'm uber-jealous of those that can. Sissy has a few headbands from other Etsy shops that we also adore, but nothing like what Katie sent. The headband is so simple and fabulous. The yarn that she used is super soft, slightly stretchy and a gorgeous color. I love that it has a thin band and is perfect for Spring/Summer.

 Isn't it just perfect? It's so girly and fun and it's a perfect match to the leg warmers. Which, we also adore. Again, super soft, slightly stretchy and the flowers are the perfect feminine touch without being overpowering. I love the way that the leg warmers and headband pair pefectly with her simple Polo dress:

It's perfect for this mild Texas weather. And I know that once she starts crawling, they will do a great job of keep her little knees protected on these hard ceramic tiles that cover our entire house.

I also love that we can pull them up over her chubby things and make them into a sort of leggings, or leave them slouchy and kinda trendy looking...
I'm sure they'd look great with a pair of faux-Uggs but we don't have those. They also look great just as a photo prop...this picture I captured of Sissy is one of my all time favorites. Forget the fact that the exposure/lighting is off (it was overcast out) I just love how the leg warmers & headband add that touch of girlishness yet shows off her baby side; I super love that she is sucking her thumb...just a little something that she's been doing recently that her brothers never did.
So, I cannot recommend Katie enough! Be sure to check out her shop for other cute items as well! She not only crochets but also sews and has the most adorable onesie dresses and bibs too!

Monday, February 21, 2011

Sunday at the Park

 Sissy's first time at the park, and first time going down the slide.
and my little crawler...still not walking on his leg but he had a blast!
 out of focus, but i love it!

sneaky little boy, found mommy's phone

Saturday, February 19, 2011

80 degrees and snowing!?

Yep, only in Texas will they pay some company to make snow. Or what they call snow. Whatever.

Our little suburb of our big Texas city had their annual ''Snowfest Carnival'' this evening completely with real snow. Or a bunch of guys feeding bags of ice into, what looked like, a wood chipper. They also had little carnival rides, games and the glorious ever popular, carnival food! So we headed over there to see what it was all about. Never did I think the kids would be wearing short sleeve shirts while playing in the snow, but it was 80 degrees out when we got there. {It did however cool off quickly once the sun went down and the wind picked up}. All the snow activities and bounce houses (which we avoided) were free, so it really was a neat little carnival. The kids loved it!
 This is when my boys yelled ''Dis isn't's just ice!"
 And Peanut promptly tried to eat was, apparently ''Yucky''
 Pookie checking everything out
 After winning light-up swords at the ''Pick a Duck'' and everyone wins a prize game
 B trying to knock over the milk bottles. Unfortunately, he did not win.
 Very happy boys at the end of the night!
We ended up staying for about two hours and it was quite a bit of fun. Not to crowded and had a very ''small town'' feel...which is nice! B and I both decided that in July, we're going home for our normal county fair. {Plus July in south Texas will probably be hotter than hell and we'll welcome the "cooler'' weather back home}.

random stream of consciousness

i haven't blogged in almost a week so this is going to be wordy and long. eek! i've been busy but not anymore than usual.

sissy seems to be going through a growth spurt and has been waking once in the middle of the night to nurse. not that that is bad, but it's an adjustment. especially when i don't usually go to sleep til midnight/1am. what can i say? i'm a bit of a night owl and i enjoy having a couple hours in the evening when it's just B and I, relaxing, watching hulu and mindlessly surfing the internet. she sure is growing. we took her to the doctor today to get checked out {we felt a lump under her nipple and wanted to get it checked...when you find a lump on your 4 month old's breast, your first reaction is to FREAK out but alas, it's just a breast bud enlarged due to hormones and while not common, it's definitely not unheard of. he warned us that she may even lactate a little but it's harmless} but my point is that since her appointment on feb 4, sissy has gained 9 oz and grew 1/4 of an inch...that's half a pound in fourteen days ya'll. she's growing like a weed!

we also took peanut to the orthopedic doctor today. he woke up looking like this:
and by lunchtime...tada:
his fracture is completely healed and the little guy is now cast free! yay! you would think that he would be running and jumping and totally out of control. quite the contrary. he is still not walking on his leg. most of the time he still keeps it bent at an angle. dr w. said that it's completely normal. his knee and ankle are quite sensitive and stiff. walking on it now feels a bit painful and sore but he should be back to normal in a few days. if not, we need to take him back but after supper he was crawling around putting weight on his knee so i'm not too concerned. thankfully he also went to bed easily, i was afraid that he would resist and realize that he can get out of his bed but he snuggled right in and went to sleep.

his and sissy's room is coming together nicely. last saturday we made a jaunt up to IKEA and got him a bed. we ended up purchasing a different one that we had planned {i'll be honest $179 vs on on clearance for $59--wasn't a hard choice!} but we like it. it's solid pine but unfinished. B assembled the whole thing in less than one hour. i love me some ikea! his wall decal from decomodwalls arrived on valentine's day and i got that all put up. i was a wee bit nervous at first but it was actually very easy, only took about an hour and now he's wall isn't so plain. plus he likes it! we still need to paint/finish his bed in a matching white but for now, it's coming together nicely.
it ain't easy doing a gender neutral room so we opted to do garden/butterfly for sissy and cars/trucks for him but keeping the color family as chocolate brown, orange, teal, green and a touch of pink. i realize that the pink dresser isn't helping with the neutrality issue but again, $34 at IKEA and i don't really care! the bonus is B doesn't forget which dresser is sissy's! i still need to figure out something for the empty wall between the two beds but i haven't given it much thought yet.

the big boys room, while i don't have pictures, is almost all finished. lightning mcqueen is the theme and they love it. i need to order some posters for their walls but i haven't committed to that yet. i need some nice (but fairly cheap) poster frames, otherwise they get excited pointing at the posters and accidentally rip them. (go ahead, ask me how i know!) i keep thinking i'll get over to hobby lobby and look there but really when you have four kids under the age of five, taking them all to hobby lobby isn't high on the priority list. the fake grapes everywhere? well they don't look fake to toddlers. so peanut is pretty much screaming for grapes the.entire.time. even though i've shown him how fake they are, it's like he can't quite process it. so eventually, i'll get those up. i might get them each a poster for their birthday, make it a bit more special and go from there. i'm not in a rush, they love their room as is.

speaking of crafts, my next 'to do' craft is making some curtains for my kitchen. i want to go with a 70's-ish vintage theme so i chose this fabric:
i just pink puffy heart the colors! it's paired with a chocolate brown with off-white polka dots. in my head, it's really cute. my idea is to make them similar to this. with the polka dots at top and bottom and the apple pear fabric in the middle. let's hope i can pull it off! i intend on making the curtains and then hopefully i'll have enough fabric leftover for a matching table runner or placemats, heck even a potholder set? jo-ann's only had 5.5yds left on the bolt and i bought all of it so let's hope it's enough!

to go with the vintage theme, i very excitedly won an auction on ebay for ''vintage'' tupperware canisters. it cracks me up that this is a collectible and people go nuts over it. {although me buying it only fuels the fire} i won't even mention how much i paid...i know you can find a ton of it at goodwill, estates sells, etc but again, those four loveable children stop me from going to auctions, know what i mean? so i willingly purchased a near mint condition set on ebay. then i mentioned to my momma and she went to her local salvation army and found a matching piece for $1.99. yay!
i already have this cute little cookie jar, whose colors tie in nicely:
i really just need to find a vintage wall clock and i think i'll be done. i'm hoping i can find an old dr pepper clock or sign but those go for the big bucks so we'll see. i'm just super excited to have a kitchen that is open and big enough to decorate; previously that wasn't really an option because in my prior kitchens i could literally touch every single appliance while standing in one spot. i'm trying to decorate cheaply; hence making my own curtains and then not feeling so bad on the little splurges {like the tupperware}.

well this post is already super long, and it's now past 1am so i need to head to bed. tomorrow we are taking the kids to the town carnival. they are actually bringing in a snow machine and making snow for the kids to play in. they have tubes to go ''sledding'' with and ''loose snow'' to play with, plus hayrides, face painting and bounce houses {which we will OBVIOUSLY be avoiding for the time being} but it's free and i'm sure the kiddos will love it. until next time...

Monday, February 14, 2011

The many faces of Maggie-Moo

Last year on Valentine's day we discovered that we had a little one on the way. That was the best Valentine's day ever. Until today. This Valentine's day we spent it snuggling, loving, and spoiling all of our kids, and unexpectedly, our daughter. I love our big little family!

Friday, February 11, 2011

In the eyes of a two-year old...

Tonight I was nursing Sweetcheeks while cuddled up in Peanuts bed reading him his bedtime story. Being two he frantically picks out the book but then only half listens. I'm reading while he is playing with his stuffed animals next to me, giving them voices and having them talk to each other. I continue reading and next thing I know he's smashing his 'Sheepy' up against my boob going ''gulp gulp gulp!" then Sharky...''gulp gulp gulp" I ask ''Peanut what are you doing?"

"Da're firsty need milk''

"Hon Mommy's milk is for babies, not for animals"

"Da're baby nan-i-mals mom and ewe got da milk...[shoves sharky back up against me] "gulp..gulp..gulp....awww. sharky says tanks mom."

Sure. No problem hon, glad I could be an open milk bar to all your animals.

Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Brown bag popcorn, big boy beds and bouncy frogs

How is that for random!?

A few nights ago I was up late, blog hopping {does anyone else do that for on one link, hop to a blog, click on another and keep going until you can't remember what you were looking at first?!} and stumbled upon a blog (sorry but I can't remember which one) that talked about making popcorn using a paper sack, in the microwave.

I know you're thinking '' Um,'s called microwave popcorn" but it's not that. You literally use a brown paper lunch sack, a 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels and your microwave. That's it. Top it with whatever you like; butter, salt, cheese, bacon salt, ranch dressing seasoning...whatever fits your fancy. It's obviously much much healthier than the butter-lovers, chocked full of preservatives, store bought stuff that could sit on a shelf for 3 years and not go stale. Here is my super self explanatory ''tutorial'':

-Measure out 1/4 cup of popcorn kernels. Pour them into the brown paper bag.
 Fold the bag's top over a few times, tightly. Push out most of the air.
Place the bag in your microwave. I used the 1.7 oz popcorn button/selection but just listen until the pops are 1-2 seconds apart. {Like when you would normally make popcorn}
 And in my case, less than two minutes later....Tada!:
We then poured the popcorn into a bowl, sprayed with a touch of ''I can't believe it's not butter'' spray, shook some Parmesan cheese on it and the boys inhaled it! {ignore the above pic that has cooking spray in it...I had a brain fart moment and got the wrong thing out}.
Peanut's look of approval ;)
So easy, much cheaper and healthier and honestly, a heck of a lot more fun. Maybe I am totally lame, maybe everyone else already knew you could do this but I thought you had to have an air popper or pop it on the stove if you wanted to make popcorn yourself...not true at all!

So now that I have that craving planted in your head....on to big boy beds!

You may remember in my last post {you know the one that involved vomit} that I mentioned moving Peanut to a twin sized bed. Well due to unforeseen illness, we didn't get it picked up til Tuesday evening. Every other time I've transitioned my kids to a bigger bed, I've always made the move at naptime. Well that wasn't going to work because B couldn't even pick up the bed until after work. So instead I opted to not let Peanut nap yesterday. He stayed in the living room with me, playing with puzzles and reading books. My hope was that by the time we got the bed set up and he finally got to sleep, he'd be too tired to fight the change.

I'm a bit of genius, if I do say so myself.

By the time he was in bed, he fussed maybe 25 minutes before heaving a huge sigh and crawling into bed. Literally B and I could hear him at the door {we put up the baby-gate so he can't get out and wonder in the middle of the night but we can see in} and he was saying/yelling/whispering/yelling ''Mommy's bed" then ''Dad....DADDY!". This went on and off a bit but overall he didn't protest near as much as we thought he would. {Just in case I hadn't mentioned it, he's been sleeping in our bed since he got his cast on} And in case you were wondering we opted to switch him now, using the injury to our advantage; he can't climb the gate or get into Sissy's crib, etc with a cast on!

Anyway, I had also mentioned trying to find fabric to make his quilt but yesterday while at Target I found a twin sized thick fleece ''PolarTec'' blanket on clearance for $6.98. Hello, cheaper than 2+ yards of fabric and the color matched Sissy's bedding set so, viola super easy blanket! This weekend {if it doesn't rain} we are going to Ikea and most likely getting him this bed in white. So, please disregard that his mattress is currently on the floor:
Don't mind his giant Sealy pillow, it keeps him from banging his cast on the tile when we crawls in/out
You can't tell in the pic but his sheets are these from Target. They are stripes with vehicles in them. I also ordered this for his wall...from etsy shop Decomodwalls:

But, I ordered it so the alphabet is a deep brown and the vehicles are in lime. Ideally, they should nicely coordinate with Sissy's butterflies and wall hanging of her name...
In my mind, it looks really great, lol! Making a boy/girl room match isn't easy. Especially since I made all of Sissy's stuff...I'm not about to go out and re-buy or re-make all of that!

And speaking of Sissy; she finally has enough upper body control and is alert enough to play in her jumper. She absolutely LOVES it. Her feet don't touch the bottom yet but she loves the teether, the big froggy eyes and how her brothers can gently make her spin and they also bat at toys for her.
 In the next pic, she looks like the frog, lol
and a little bit like another kiddo of ours...
 but can you guys which one???