You Capture: Week 10 - JOY!

What is joy?

Right now, it's hanging out in the backyard with my best bud.

Today, he learned how to throw the ball for the dogs - which for them...well, its complete and utter JOY!

I tried for a self portrait in the grass, but our dog Sadie kind of got in the way. But I really love the way it turned out. Slobbery. Both the kid and the dog...

There's more joy to be had over at I Should Be Folding Laundry!

Roller Coaster

It's good news this week!

I'm down - contrary to what the demon scale was telling me yesterday, today I'm down. Not a lot, mind, but at least I didn't gain.

I was hoping to be at least a few pounds down, I've been super active over the last week. Did a bit of the shred, but have also joined a workout group, I did the March of Dimes March for Babies, and did a lot of manual labor (yard work). I'm super sore, and my body FEELS different. As in, I don't have to work as hard to hold in my muffin top.

You hear that? The muffin top is shrinking. Whoopee!!

I also made a good food discovery this week - Ezekiel 4:9 Bread. I'm not gonna lie, it's not that tasty on its own. But toasted, with a little peanut butter, it's actually good! And super filling. Lots of protein and very necessary fiber. I've been eating a slice with PB and some banana for breakfast on the days I work out with Stroller Strides - and I've had enough energy that I don't keel over.

So, to the numbers:

Starting Weight: 182
Last Week's Weight: 179.8
This Week's Weight: 178.4

At this point, I'm pretty sure I'm not going to hit my goal of fifteen pounds in 8 weeks. I'm guessing, if I'm lucky, 5 to 7. But I am okay with that - it's something.


Cheeseburgers & Vampires

I love Twilight. And I love burgers.

And on this f-ing diet, this is how I FEEL about cheeseburgers right now.

Num. RAHR!!!


Case of the Mondays.

Can you really have a case of the Mondays when all days meld into one? Half the time I don't even know what day it is...but today feels very much like I remember Mondays when I was trudging to the office. I can't believe it's almost been three months!

What's the problem?

Well...since you asked....

1) Chapped lips. Yes, this sounds insignificant, but seriously, don't chapped lips just suck? When I get them, they are awful. And then I CAN'T STOP LICKING THEM. I have this great stuff from Kiehl's, which is basically fancy petroleum jelly, but I swear by it. However, it usually takes a few days to completely rid me of my heinous, crusty chapped lips. So I suffer. Booooo!

2) I am sore all over from yard work, and from Stroller Strides, which I started today. Which should be a good thing, except I step on the scale - which, by the way, I seem to need to step on every single time I pass by - and I'm up. Which makes me want to throw things - especially said scale. Which brings me to...

3) B announces this morning that he LOST FIVE POUNDS IN HIS SLEEP. After this proclamation, he systematically runs through the list of what he ate directly before bedtime - two lunch size bags of Sunchips, five chocolate chip cookies, Starburst...

4) G has been consistently waking up and needing comforting (from me) every two hours all night long. Somehow he makes it every two hours on the dot - I'm not kidding or exaggerating - I check the clock each time I roll out of bed (and being as sore as I am, I'm literally rolling onto the floor then almost crawling). I think he is teething, because he's drooling like a mastiff all shot up with Novocaine.

5) Did I mention he's not napping?

6) And finally, SWINE FLU. Why is it annoying me? Because of all the freaking out! Clearly it is a cause for concern, and I'm not so cold-hearted that I don't feel anything for those suffering or dying from it, but the panic starts to irritate me. There was a news story on last night about people in my area who were freaking out and trying to buy Tamiflu from the local drugstore. There has not been one case reported even NEAR here. So everyone, chill the *#& out and wash your hands. Stop going to the ER because you have a cough and a 101 fever.

I'm going to be happy when this day is over.

Mondays - yeah, I'm STILL not a fan.


The Neighbors, They're Talking...

As much as it pains me to admit this, we are THAT house on our street.

That house. You know, the one where the neighbors shake their heads as they pass by. Why don't they DO something about their lawn? They really should take down that old fence! Why in God's name do they have that Bronco on blocks in their driveway (no really. we do.).

And I was brought up better than that. I really, REALLY was.

We're like Hal and Lois on Malcolm in the Middle. All the neighbors around us talk to each other and seem to be friends. They probably have cookouts when we're out of town. No one talks to us.

Until this week.

Suddenly, neighbors s are stopping to talk to B as he's working in the yard. Now that we're fixing up our lawn THEY LIKE US!

Sure, it's taken us a while to get around to it. WE HAD A BABY FOR *&@'s SAKE.

This is our front yard about three weeks ago, all the nasty sod pulled up. Did you know they grow sod in netting? And when you try to pull up the sod and netting, it rips up into a cajillion little horrid pieces? It's does and it sucks.

And if you're wondering, the guy across the street has someone else take care of his lawn. Cheater.

Here's our yard a few days ago after B's birthday gift was delivered. Fifteen yards of dirt - erm, I mean - soil. He wanted DIRT for his birthday. Now that is dedication!

Today, my parents visited and we got all that loverly soil spread around, and in the next few days B will till and we'll spread grass seed.

And then, we will have the VERY BESTEST FRONT YARD IN THE WHOLE BLOCK. And they will all worship and adore us.

Or maybe just talk to us?

There is still the issue of the Bronco (I told you I wasn't kidding). But if it's still here come summer, I'm totally making it into a planter.



Today we walked.

Today, G and I raised $360 for The March of Dimes in honor of Team James & Jake.

Today, we made a difference for a family with struggles we'll hopefully never have to experience.

Today, I look at my beautiful baby boy and am in awe of his perfection, his imperfection, HIM.

Today, I know how lucky I am in experiencing an uneventful, healthy pregnancy.

Today, I will hug my family a little tighter.

Today, I am grateful.



All I can say is wow.


I have not done any fundraising for as long as I can remember. Maybe even high school. And it was a little weird for me to scour my email contacts and send out an email asking for donations for the March of Dimes - but I did it. I even used social networking to my advantage and have been 'hinting' by way of my status update on Facebook.

And boy, did I get a response. In three days, I have raised $310 for the March of Dimes in the name of Team James & Jake! It is so touching that people are still willing to donate in such tough economic times. Seriously. Touching. I get a little choked up thinking about it.

So, to everyone reading who has donated, THANK YOU. From the depth of my heart, thank you!

And if you've been kicking around the idea, stop kicking and please consider donating a few dollars. Every little bit counts. The link to the donation page is on my sidebar - it's very easy.

I'm not begging. Okay. Kind of. I'm just so close to my goal of $400 (and surpassing that goal would be OH SO SWEET!).

I know I want an organization like the March of Dimes fueling further research into taking care of our babies when they are at their most vulnerable. And just think how much we can save in medical bills if funds are put towards educating women about prenatal care? Giving them the tools to give birth to a healthy, thriving child? Education and prevention, people!!

Whew! Okay, I'm stepping away from the computer now. My virtual soapbox!


Earth Day - My Way.

What did you do for Earth Day?

I was feeling kind of bad because I didn't officially do anything.

But then I thought about it, and the 'green' things I do everyday. Such as:

- I hardly ever drive. Today I needed something from the grocery store and drugstore and we walked, 3 miles round trip.

- I conserve water. Like some days I don't shower and I only flush the toilet after number 2 - mostly because the only time I get to go to the bathroom is when the child is napping, and his room is right next to the bathroom and flushing wakes him up! Yes, kind of gross, but it does CONSERVE WATER! I bet a lot of busy moms do this everyday and don't even think about it.

- I keep and reuse all my yogurt and sour cream containers. Great for leftovers.

- I compost. Actually, I create all the waste for the compost and my wonderful husband puts it in the bin, takes its temperature, and turns it. He's all scientific about it and stuff. Whatever works, right?

And I'm sure there are a bunch of other little things I do, more in the name of being cheap - but hey, today, I'm calling them GREEN.

By the way, if you want your website to totally freeze up with traffic, have Oprah mention your product with a discount. I finally got on the SIGG website - they are offering 20% off with the code 'HARPO', and To Go Ware is also offering 20% off with the code 'TOGO20.' I'm ordering this from SIGG. How much does it look like my blog?! So groovy!

You Capture: Week 9 (NINE? WOW!) - Letters

I love being mama to a toddler. Every day is he's exploring and learning something new. And most days, that exploration does not include blood, dog poo or toilet paper strewn all over the house.

Most days.

G was completely taken with this sign - brushing his chubby fingers across the letters. And singing 'ABCD' ... that's all he knows, the first four letters. And they're hardly distinguishable - BUT I'M HIS MAMA AND I KNOW HE'S A GENIUS AND HE'S SINGING HIS ABC'S AT 15 MONTHS.

And finally, not so cool letters, especially for these poor people. Their fence backs up onto our neighborhood park. My guess? A herd of lame middle schoolers getting up to no good. Whatever happened to toilet papering and other semi harmless tomfoolery? Shoot...

For more letters, jump over to I Should Be Folding Laundry.

Up in a BAD Way.

No good news today, I'm afraid. I'm up. And not it a good way.

I did not do well with the food this week. And I missed shredding for a day or two (okay, TWO). So I know it is my fault. I can't PHONE IT IN as Jillian likes to say, OVER AND OVER AND OVER. I need to commit, apply myself, and all that jazz.

I can tell you why I did crappy with food this week. Not an excuse - an explanation. There were a few things:

1) It was B's birthday and I cooked his requested lobster dinner. And I ate lobster with garlic butter. It was glorious. But it doesn't look so glorious attached to my ass. I need to repeat this mantra every time I start thinking about overindulging. Are a few seconds of gastronomical bliss really worth never fitting in my pre-preganancy jeans again? NO. NO NO NO NO.....NO!!!!! And if you didn't get that...NO!

2) I had a big decision to make this week that consumed my brain and left little capacity to think about things like eating healthy. So I had fried chicken and potato salad. And frosted animal cookies. And the *#&$#@% leftover Easter candy. I felt terrible afterwards. I mean, really terrible - mentally and physically. Like a cased sausage. Rotund. Not good.

The good news is, I made the decision I was wrestling with and feel so very positive about what I decided. No regrets.

So now, I feel like I can more fully commit to my health. I will not give up.

Okay, okay. I'm avoiding posting my results but here they are:

Starting Weight: 182
Last Week's Weight: 178.2
This Week's Weight: 179.8

This week I will not HOPE for better results, I will MAKE them. So there.


Marching for Babies

On Saturday, G and I will be participating in the March of Dimes March for Babies. I've been reading a lot about it over on Beth's blog, I Should Be Folding Laundry. And I have decided to walk for Team James and Jake.

I was turned on to Beth's blog through You Capture, a weekly photo 'assignment' that has really helped me get out of the house and do something creative and constructive - rather than stew over being unemployed. I've been reading her regularly and am very inspired, amused, and often touched by her openness. She talks about such a painful subject with such raw, beautiful emotion - I'm sure her candid words have helped many people struggling with the loss of a child.

Yesterday, Beth launched an Esty Shop with some of her beautiful photographs. Through April 30, all proceeds go to Team James and Jake. Check it out - you won't be sorry!

By the way, if you feel so inclined to sponsor me, please click on my March of Dimes button on the sidebar - it will take you to the donation site. If you prefer, you can also sponsor Beth directly, she is trying to raise $5000. She's almost there! You can find a link to her page here.

Signs of Summer

Okay, I know it's only April, but it is absolutely gorgeous out today. So I'm thinking summer! And nothing says SUMMER like drinking from the hose.

G taught himself this new trick today. He says 'WAH-TER?' and then makes the big 'AHHHHHhhhhhh' sound after a few slurps.



I was sifting through my nifty little Stat Tracker today and happened upon an IP address from Tulane University. The hit had come through a Google Search. Click here for the search page

Someone at Tulane decided to search 'naked locker room-cam' and ended up on my post about taking my child swimming.


And yet, mildly amusing.

Even more amusing? The fact that if someone searches for NAKED LOCKER ROOM-CAM again, they'll probably end up on this post and be terribly, terribly disappointed.

Poop and Farts - My Life with Boys.

I once worked for a man who said: "It's funny when you're three and it's still funny when you're eighty-three."

He was referring to bodily functions.

In the last two days, I have been farted at and on (YES ON) and I don't know quite how to say this - it was not by my child. Ahhh. Romance! Nothing quite says 'I love you' like being pinned to the ground and forcibly flatulated (is that a word) on. And it's even better when your toddler looks on with glee, clapping his hands and cackling like a little imp.

Even our male dog farts at me. Carl somehow can aim his tush right at me and ready...aim...fire. Seriously. These things call for gas masks.

Conversation from last night:

B and I looking at each other.
"Was that you?"
"No. I was going to ask you the same thing."
Simultaneously look down at Carl sprawled out on the floor.
"I guess I shouldn't have fed him that left over garlic butter..."

And to cap it all off, G seriously had the most offensive, atrocious poop last night. I was feeding him dinner and he started grunting and pushing. I wasn't too alarmed, I figured it was just a normal poop.

Oh no. Oh Lord no.

I knew I was in trouble when I pulled him out of the highchair and I could see it SEEPING UP HIS ONESIE.

I had already run his bath so we proceeded to the bathroom. Where I pulled down his jeans to discover the poo had also escaped his diaper at the leg holes and had traveled down his legs and to his socks. Damn you Pampers!

At this point, I called in reinforcements. B brought me about 40 wipes and almost barfed. He had to leave the scene of the crime.

All the while, G is happily singing to himself, trying to grab at his nasty diaper and then touch every surface in the bathroom. I peeled off his clothes, threw them in the toilet, wiped off the CHUNKS and into the bath he went.

The clothes required about five minutes of swirling and flushing. And it was still sticking. I'm praying that my high tech washer lives up to its promises.

So, I guess this is my life now. Bodily functions.

I need to bone up of the fart jokes, stat.



Well, okay. It's kind of a leash.
Actually, I think the term is HARNESS? A leash goes around the neck.
This clearly is a harness.

And see, they even try to make it cute by putting a monkey on it...A MONKEY BACKPACK.

How can there be anything sinister about a monkey backpack?

We were at the zoo today for B's birthday, and I was a few paces behind my guys. I overheard these two older women 'discussing' my child being harnessed.

Let's say they found it a bit inhumane.

Well, LADIES, what's more inhumane - keeping close tabs on your child or letting them run off like a shot through the crowd? Hmmmm? What's that? OH YEAH. That's what I thought.

I do not have one of those children who clings or stays close to mommy and daddy. I have a very willful, high spirited and independent child. Did I mention fast? And one day, those traits will serve him well.

But for now, he's wearing the harness. The cute MONKEY BACKPACK harness. Cute and safe. I like it.


Fresh. Fresh. Exciting.

Nothing like a little Kool and the Gang to get you going in the morning (or at any time for that matter). Could have used a little of K&TG yesterday.

Yesterday, oh, yesterday. Wow, what a doozy! It's strange to me how I can become so drained. It wasn't a bad day as days go, but just flat out tiring.

We were invited to a playgroup at a local pool. I'm so happy we went - it's a great pool for toddlers. Warm enough, a great shallow area, lots of balls and pool toys, and even a lazy river to float down. G loved every minute. Well, except for the time in the changing room. That part sucked for both of us. I was sweating like a madwoman trying to get us both dressed. You see, my child will not stand still. Not for a moment, unless he's getting into something that will inevitably cause bodily harm. So, I wouldn't let him run around in a locker room full of naked women and he decided to cry about it (typical male, right?).

But once we were out in the pool, the kid was in heaven. Between splashing, running around in the shallow area and throwing the beach ball around, he wore himself right out.

And for the first time since I can remember, he slept through the night, 7:30 pm to 7:00 am. Wowza.

If I ever needed him to do that, it was last night. It is truly amazing what a good night's sleep can do for one's psyche.

This morning, I've had my coffee, G is back down for his morning nap and I've got some serious work to do around the house.

But I feel totally up to it.

Five loads of laundry? Sure!

Mopping? Bring it on!

Ironing Sheets? Errr. I have to draw the line somewhere. I'm not June Cleaver, y'all.


Oy. Just Oy.

I am completely and utterly exhausted. I feel like I could go to bed and sleep for fifteen hours. But I'd settle for five in a row. Seriously.
I don't know if its all the shredding catching up with me (Phase 2 is a beeeyatch) or what. I think I'm hitting a wall. Physically and mentally.
Tonight, I'm not working out. I'm going to bed. I think it's best for my family that I get some sleep and let my pulled groin muscle heal (Oh, did I not mention that? Ouch.) before I start throwing things.


Week 8 - You Capture: Rustic

I live in the burbs - nothing much rustic 'round here, unless you count the rusting out Ford Bronco project B has going in the driveway. Yes, just doing our part to bring down the neighborhood property values.

When I think rustic, I think old barns, quaint little log cabins in the woods, cooking on a wood stove...

So this week was tough. What is rustic? And for some reason the word 'bread' came to mind. Maybe it's because I'm dieting. But I decided to bake bread. For two reasons - photos and also to give to one of my dear friends who had a baby on Easter.

Kneading the bread. It became even more rustic because I couldn't find my *#&#* breadhook and had to knead by hand.

In the oven. Smells SO good.

Oh yes, I also made pea soup.

Here is my very rustically chopped mirepoix. Yes, I said MIREPOIX. Look at me all French and stuff!

Said mirepoix in my very loved dutch oven.

And the finished product.

Very rustic looking and delicious tasting soup and bread. Oh yes, and wine. I needed a drink after all that domesticity!

For more rustic, visit I Should Be Folding Laundry.


... my new blog design.
Isn't it FAB?
Thank you so much to Beth at ruby & roja for the awesome design! I sent her a photo of a bottle of gel that had the colors I liked and told her I liked retro kitsch...and she did the rest. Like I said, FAB!
If you are perhaps wondering about the eye rolling thing, well, it's a very bad habit of mine. I got in trouble when I was in first grade for rolling my eyes at my teacher (sorry Mrs. Olsen!) and I still get in trouble with my husband for rolling my eyes at him. It's involuntary, a reflex, like breathing. I am in a constant state of sarcasm.
So this is my grand re-opening, my blog warming party! Say hi if you're stopping by.
I'm not rolling my eyes at YOU. I promise.

And Another Pound Bites the Dust...

I feel heavy today. You know when your body just feels like you're wearing a vest full of weights? That everything you ate the previous day is just hanging out, refusing to make it's journey through the digestive tract? Like every cell in your body is completely full of water like a saturated sponge? Yeah, kind of like that.

Very much dreading weighing in this morning, I made myself get on the scale before even a drop of coffee had passed my lips.

And even though I had a not so great food week, I still managed to lose a pound.

Thank you Jillian Michaels!

Everything logical would point to me actually GAINING this week. You see, I was stupid enough to make cupcakes for Easter and think that other people would actually eat them. But no. So there they were, in all their cupcakey glory, sitting on my kitchen counter for days. Yesterday, I woke up, and there were still about six left, and I put them in the trash compactor, covered them with gross, stinky garbage, and smashed them. Because if I put them in the regular garbage they might look okay to eat later (shut up).

And then there was the candy. Thankfully, nobody brought me any creme eggs. That would have been the end of it for me. Creme eggs are my crack. But there were still jellybeans and robins eggs. Oh Easter candy, why must you be so incredibly delicious?

My saving grace this week had to be the Shred. I did it every day except Monday night, and I feel awesome. I'm still on the first workout, but it is getting easier, so I think I need to consider moving to workout two. Though I still suck at the push-ups. I HATE PUSH UPS!

So, for week three, here are my results:

Start weight: 182
Last week's weight: 179.8
This week's weight: 178.2

I'm dying to find out what I can accomplish if I eat right and do the Shred together. Hopefully, next week I'll hit the scale and just be AMAZED. Or even just mildly surprised.


Dear God, Thank You for Spanx.

Two weeks ago I applied for a job.
And finally, I heard back from a recruiter. Yesterday I had an interview.
To be quite honest, this was the very first time I haven't been nervous at all for an interview. In fact, I was eerily calm. Maybe because though I probably should be working, I don't feel desperate. Yet.
All was well yesterday until I went to get dressed. Let's put it this way. I was A LOT smaller last time I had to put on a suit. And by a lot, I mean a large toddler smaller. I wasn't even going to try on my suit, but I had scoured my closet and nothing else came up interview worthy.
So I put the suit on.
And it FIT! Well, kind of. I had to hike the skirt up to get it to zip. But it did, miracle of miracles, zip.
Even better, I was able to button the coat over my still too big from having a baby boobs. They do go back, right?
As I looked in the mirror, I actually felt I looked presentable. But I had a nagging feeling that if I took to deep a breath or sat down, I was going to bust out all over the place.
Then I remembered - the greatest invention of all time - Spanx! They were buried deep in the drawer, but I still had them. I pulled them on and voila! My zipper went up with ease! I looked less lumpy! Hurrah!
So thanx to Spanx, I was able to feel a little more confident. This is a good, no GREAT thing.
Now, today, I'm just working on getting all my guts to move back into their original place. But it was SO worth it to feel slimmer even for a few hours.


In the Blogging Closet.

Confession time.

Not too many people in my life know I have a personal blog. They know I have a blog for my son, but that is something I keep separate. It's highly edited. As in, a few photos and sentences - because I'm guessing that's probably what that audience wants.

Why do I not openly tell others about my blog?

I ask myself that a lot. One conclusion I've come to is that I kind of dig the anonymity of saying what I want to say without having to come face to face with whomever is reading my rants. I do have a few friends who read, and who are very supportive.

Also, there's the part about how I'm trying to protect my fragile little ego. I'm not great at putting myself out there. I love constructive criticism, but am terrified of what people are REALLY thinking. Such as the incidence when I was still working and was chatting with a male coworker. Randomly he says 'Man, I think blogging is so narcissistic.'

I could have piped in and told him I had a blog. But that comment really stuck. It made me a little ashamed.

Am I narcissistic? It's possible. I pound out a bunch or randomness on my keyboard, not thinking to much about if it's actually readable or interesting. I HOPE others enjoy what I write.

Mostly, it's about writing. Getting stuff off my chest I feel I have to say but maybe don't have another arena in which to vent. Connecting with other people - because sometimes I feel kind of isolated as a stay at home mom. Exercising my brain - forcing myself to sit down and put something down on virtual paper.

Maybe someday I'll send out a big old group email to everyone on my contact list - 'Hey, check out my blog!'

But not today. For now, I'll keep on letting people stumble into it, and hope they keep coming back.


My Toy Story

When G was around 6 months old, I felt bad because he only had 2 or 3 toys so I went to Babies R Us and picked up a few more.

Well, those 'few more' have spawned, and now we have this:

The toybox has vomited. (And our cat, Boris, is striking quite the pose).

This doesn't even account for all the toys. I packed up a boxful a few days ago and put it in a closet. So they'll be 'new' to G in a few months time.

I was looking at the toys today and realized most of them are from my mother, G's Gigi. She is the queen of consignment stores - so I don't feel AS guilty as she's not spending all her money on new toys.

Seriously, it's getting ridiculous. This morning, I stepped on the Little People's Noah's Ark, my foot slid across the wood floor, and I ended up in the splits.

Which is NOT good as I haven't been able to do the splits since I was 18.

B has instituted a new rule - if Gigi brings new stuff for G, she must also take back an equal amount. So far, this hasn't happened.

Looking at all the hard work we - er, I mean B - did on the living room, it's sad that our new interior decorator is Fisher Price.

I need a piece of furniture for this area. This makes me swoon. Sigh. But cash flow is an issue these days, so I'm keeping my eyes on the CL. That would be Craigslist.

Anybody have any creative solutions they've used to tame the toy takeover?



Clearly, my lack of sleep over the last week or so is taking its toll.

I have no patience for stupid people. Especially stupid impatient people. How contradictory.

Today I went to Costco. I for some reason thought going on a weekday would be less busy. Boy, was I wrong. I forgot about the Easter rush. There were crowds five people deep around the spiral cut hams, cases of eggs and the wine. Because nothing says celebrating the resurrection like a case of merlot.

G decided to test out the acoustics and let out a few of his eardrum rupturing dog whistle screams. I apologized to all those within earshot (so basically this included the whole store - he is THAT loud).

Luckily I only needed a few items for Easter dinner - the aforementioned ham, some green beans, some mushrooms. What a relief (and a surprise) to spend less than $50 in Costco. Don't I get some kind of award for that?

We checked out quickly and made it out the door to the massive yet jammed parking lot. As I was crossing the lane from the store to the lot, a guy in a huge SUV spotted me and started following me for my spot.

At this point, I'm tired and have a kid who is clearly overdue for a nap. So I'm not feeling too charitable. As we near my car, I notice there are more than a few spots not more than 50 yards away. Good, I think, he won't sit there, with his blinker on, and wait for me to load my food, my kid, and myself. That would be silly.

I gave the guy too much credit. He sat there. With his blinker on. Looking impatient. Blocking traffic.

There were a few options here. I could have thrown my food in haphazardly, put G into his car seat without checking all the straps and gizmos to make sure he was secure, and pealed out of my space.

I went with my instinct. As slowly as humanly possible, I unbelted G, and got him into his car seat. I carefully readjusted his straps, found his blankie, gave him his sippy of water and a bunch of kisses on his head.

Then I moseyed on back to the trunk and loaded my groceries, almost one item at a time (I only had a few, but I had to make sure they were all in a place they wouldn't get squished or leak).

I am a total good Samaritan and ALWAYS put my cart away, so even though I was parked next to the cart round up, I took my sweet time putting the cart away - I mean, I had to make sure it lined up with the other carts, and that it wouldn't roll back out into the lot. It's the only polite thing to do.

I took a peek at stall stalker and he looks pissed.

Ha. Mission accomplished.

Once in the car, I was thirsty so I reached for my water bottle and took a nice long refreshing drink. One more check of G - he needed his sippy handed back to him - and then I went about making sure my mirrors were adjusted properly.

The whole thing was getting boring to me, so it was time to leave. I thought I had sufficiently raised this guy's blood pressure.

I was convinced that he would give up at some point in the whole process and drive the 50 yards to the other spaces.

He didn't. As I pulled away he screeched into my spot. Some people's kids, I tell you.


Owie Owie Owie

Jillian Michaels is a sadist.
And I mean that in the nicest possible way.
I started the 30 Day Shred yesterday. Usually when I start exercising (I obviously have started and stopped several times) I'm sore the next day...so I knew I was in trouble when I felt like someone beat me with a baseball bat by around 6 pm.
I don't know how I did it, but I pulled myself out of bed this morning. No really, I had to pull. After being up and around for a while, I felt a bit better, and when my darling child went down for his nap, I had some breakfast, waited to digest a bit, and decided to shred.
It went surprisingly well until G woke up midway through the workout (the jumping jacks always wake him up) and insisted upon getting out of his crib tout de suite. I figured he may be entertained by mommy huffing and puffing and flailing about. He was.
But when I got on the floor for abs, the little turd started crawling all over me and then pulling my hair. I guess the hair pulling gave more resistance to the crunches?
Suffice it to say, today was a bit more challenging, my body is yelling at me, but I did it and I feel pretty good.
Tonight, we are having fish. Well, B is having fish sticks and probably fries with a bottle of ketchup and I'm having broiled tilapia and broccoli. He is trying to GAIN weight.
Yeah, life is SO fair.


You Capture: Week 7 - FUN FUN FUN!

This weeks challenge was to capture fun.

I can't imagine anyone has quite as much fun as a toddler. They are bundles of emotions, mini-manics ecstatic for a moment and the next minute, sobbing and throwing things. At least that's how today went...

My G is a crazy little dude, full of energy, vibrant with all parts CONSTANTLY MOVING.

This includes his hair.

And he loves to explore. I took this shot while he was in this tube at the playground. He doesn't look like he's having fun in this photo, but trust me, he was.

Plus, I just really like the shot. It looks like he's a little bubble boy.

For more fun than you can possibly handle, march yourself straight on over to I Should Be Folding Laundry.

Slow and Steady Wins the Race...But I Like Instant Gratification!

And so the saga continues.

I'm a little ambivalent about this week's loss - 1.2 pounds. Oh yeah, I'm totally counting fractions of pounds. That's how I roll.

Sure, 1.2 pounds is SOMETHING. I just keep going back to the days when I was younger and would do Weight Watchers and drop five or ten pounds first thing like it was nothing.

My body, it betrays me. It hangs onto each calorie and fat gram and carbo-freakin'-hydrate like I'm heading into some kind of major famine. Well, I give it permission to leave. Someone else can have it. Someone who needs it. Like Lindsay Lohan. Or those skinny beyotches on the new 90210 (don't you just miss Brenda and Kelly and their attainable bodies? Not Donna. She was a freak show)? Can I donate my back rolls and muffin top and count it as a tax write off? Just asking.

This past week I was a little more successful with food - both portion size and what I'm eating. Tofu and broccoli anyone? And oatmeal. And more broccoli.

Exercise is getting there. I was able to get in some great walks this week, the weather was fabulous for two whole days. And I've been hopping on the Wii Fit, even though it tells me I'm overweight (duh) and just to prove a point, makes my Mii have a MUFFIN TOP. The hula hoop is killer, and G likes watching me do the boxing - he laughs and laughs.

I did the strength exercises yesterday, and I'm sore.
You know you're out of shape when the Wii Fit makes you struggle to sit up in bed.

Today I start the Jillian Michael's 30 Day Shred Challenge with the Sisterhood. It'll actually be a 28 day shred, as Amazon just delivered my DVD last night. I'm excited to try it, a little nervous as it sounds killer. I didn't realize I needed hand weights, so I'm going to have to be creative and use soup cans or my cats as the weights until I can make it to Targhay.

So that's me.

Starting Weight: 182
Week 2 Weight: 179.8

If there is one major positive for me, I've broken out of the 180's where I've been stuck since two weeks after giving birth.

I'm going to shred now. I will keep the phone close by in case I need someone to come pick me up off of the floor.


Tightwad Tuesday: Freezer Food - Breakfasts

I like cereal out of a box. But not for breakfast. If I'm going to eat breakfast, I want something hot. And with a small child, finding time to make anything wholesome and fresh in the morning is sometimes impossible.
Convenience food is tempting - it's so easy to throw it in the toaster or microwave. Unfortunately it's a budget (and diet) killer.
Last year, when I was still working, I went on an oatmeal bender. I don't like the little packages but found this great frozen oatmeal at Trader Joe's. I got to thinking, how hard can it be to make this from scratch? So I did. Here's the link to the recipe for freezer oatmeal. It's healthy, filling, inexpensive and quick. Did I mention inexpensive?
Something else I started doing was making extra waffles and pancakes on the weekend and freezing them as well. G is obsessed with waffles, and I like that I can control what goes into the ones I make from scratch. How do you do it? Simple - make your favorite waffles or pancakes. Under cook them slightly. Layer individual waffles/pancakes between waxed paper, seal in a freezer bag and throw into the freezer.
When you're ready to use them, take out what you're going to eat and throw it in the toaster. That's it - so simple!
For more tightwad tips, scurry on over to Being Frugal.


Kept Woman

I was chatting with my friend Jenn this over the weekend (she is possibly going to be laid off this summer from her job of ten years - ugh - but my fingers are crossed for her) and got to thinking about what happens if I don't find a job and my unemployment runs out.
Specifically, about how I feel about contributing no money to the household.
Even now, my meager unemployment check makes me feel like I am justified in spending a little (and when I say little, I mean a little) but how will I feel when B is the only one bringing in an income? Frankly, it makes me a little uncomfortable.
We were in the situation where we were on pretty equal footing salary wise - so we do have the basic concern about how we will cover all our expenses in general. But even if bills weren't a concern, I just don't know if I'll ever feel comfortable spending money when I'm not earning money.
Yes, I know being a full time mom is a job in itself. More than a full time job. But G isn't paying me. I don't get overtime for getting up in the middle of the night. I don't get a bonus for coercing my future wrestling star (I'm not kidding, I think he may have a future in that or MMA) into a diaper at record speeds. I don't get benefits for picking up toys five times a day.
Maybe if it had been this way from the get go, where I stayed home and was a full time domestic technician, I'd feel differently. But somehow, it feels wrong to go out and purchase anything for myself when I know it's B's hard earned money.
Women have been doing this for years. Why does it feel odd to me? I love being home with G, and I do feel like it's benefiting both of us, but how do I overcome this feeling that I'm not contributing?
I've always joked about how I'd love to be a kept woman. But now that I *kind of * am, it is just bizarre.


Let Them Eat Cake!

I went to my dear friend Stacie's baby shower this last Saturday. It was wonderful to catch up with a whole bunch of friends I haven't seen in quite some time. And so many of them are pregnant!

Towards the end of the shower, I look over to the food table and THEY'RE ALL EATING CAKE. It was only the pregnant ones, and it was priceless.

I had to take a picture. Thanks ladies for humoring me!

Aren't they beautiful? From left, Tosha(due in June), Stacie (due in May), Tara (due in July) and Rachel (due in April).

Oh yeah, they're all having GIRLS. G will have lots of girlfriends to choose from in a few years!


Your Significant Other Will Not Thank Me For This.

I love Greek food and have never been able to get my tzatziki the way I like it - the way it is in restaurants.

Until now.

I have unlocked the secret...

Greek yogurt.

Since I've cracked this recipe, I've been walking around sweating garlic. You know, when you burp garlic for days...you brush your teeth a trillion times and your sweetie still recoils in horror? Yeah, like that.

It is SO worth it.

Here's the recipe. It's so easy.

You'll need:

1 pint Greek yogurt - yes, it does come in fat free
1 large clove garlic, grated on a microplane (NOT the whole head, you don't want to kill anyone)
1/2 English cucumber, grated with a cheese grater (I prefer English or Persian to plain old cukes with seeds - but they'll do in a pinch)
1 T fresh dill, roughly chopped (or you can skip it you're not big on dill)
Sea salt to taste

Mix it all together and let it marinate in the fridge for a bit, at least an hour.

Eat with grilled chicken, on a Greek salad, on a pita, off the spoon.


You Capture: Week Six - Spring

It's funny, not ha-ha funny, but ironic funny that this week's challenge is Spring.
Because today, we seriously regressed back into winter. It snowed here. It did, thank you Jesus, melt before midday.
Nevertheless, I went outside (brrrrrrr) and tried to capture some Spring.
Spring in these parts is a fleeting thing. But I did find this:

Our Magnolia has buds.
When we first moved in our house, B was about to pull this tree out - it looked dead.
But I asked him to leave it, just till the spring.
When it blooms, it looks like this:

Please excuse the gratuitous baby pic - the tree is in the background...
And another sign of spring at our house? The yard is completely in pieces. We are redoing our lawn.

Lovely, isn't it? But, later in the summertime, I should have some fabulous after shots. I'd BETTER, at least.

For some (hopefully) more spring-y signs of spring, click on over to I Should Be Folding Laundry.

Dooce In the Hizzay!

My wonderful B watched the kiddo last night and I got to go to see Heather Armstrong (aka Dooce) speak.
I wasn't really sure what to expect. A few people sitting around a corner of a small bookstore?
Uh, no. First of all, the bookstore was huge. I'm pretty sure it's an old grocery store. About a quarter of if it is the actual store, and then there is a stage with a bunch of area for seating/dancing/whatever, and then there were a few places to eat - even a barbecue place. Huh? The bookstore is called Third Place Books, and I will definitely be going back. Locally owned and lots of author readings.
I pulled in the parking lot and it was packed. I found what I seriously think may have been the last spot and pulled in.
As I was walking up to the store, a little blue Subaru (the Washington state car, dontcha know) pulled up right in front.
And out steps Heather Armstrong.
First impressions? She's really tall (I'd say at least six feet in heels), does not look pregnant at all except for her bump, and is gorgeous. The photos on her site don't do justice.
I held the bookstore door open for her she was very gracious.
At this point I decided to go buy my book and find a seat. I didn't want to be TOO big a stalker. The place was buzzing like we were expecting a rock star. And the crowd was so diverse! There were people of all ages - women quietly knitting, total sorority girls (right behind me, OMG OMG OMG), a gay couple. I was so impressed how far reaching Dooce.com has become. Pretty amazing for a blog.
Heather (can I call her Heather) read a few passages from her new book - It Sucked and Then I Cried - and then read an archived blog post from a time she visited the Pacific Northwest. And it was about farting in public bathrooms. We were all shrieking with laughter. A question and answer period ensued, which included a ton of people basically plugging their own blogs (is that couth?) - but the best one was a woman who made her a gift. A gift she figured only Dooce would appreciate - a leather vagina purse. Go Seattle go!
I anticipated a huge line for the book signing, so I followed the lead of the guys sitting by me to get in line early.

And here's me getting my book signed! I was so very pleasantly surprised how warm and affable she was in person. And how chunky I look next to a PREGNANT woman! Damn. Oh well.

Muffin Top Musings - Weighing In

Here I am, one week in and one pound down. Can't say I'm super excited about the minimal loss, but I guess it's something, right?
Very honestly, I shouldn't complain. I've been a flying a little fast and loose with the eating this week. I've done Weight Watchers before and know that I am only successful when I write everything down. Which I did not do this week. I also know that I am an emotional eater. Some days just get the better of me - what I need to learn is how to channel that energy, those feelings elsewhere. Like kicking hula hoop ass on the Wii Fit.
The exercise this week actually went pretty well. I discovered if I put G in the hiking backpack and leash both the dogs then go for a long walk through the park, I work up quite the sweat. I don't know if that's due to the fact I'm tragically out of shape, or if it's actually a good workout. But for now, it'll do.
Today, believe it or not, it's pretty much snowing outside. What I mean by that is it's just a wee bit too warm to stick. I wish I could say April Fools. But I can't. The weather really sucks that much.
So that's me for this week. Nothing to revealing, but I am pleased the scale went down, if only a pound.