A new year, a new me.

This picture was taken right before Thanksgiving last year. I was at my heaviest, wearing the same few articles of clothing because they were the only ones that fit. I had half heartedly just started Weight.Watchers for the 3rd time. Honestly, I felt awful. Low energy, hard to wake up and get going in the morning, having heart palpitations and knee pain. Something had to change. I have had the "something big needs to change" talk with myself countless times throughout life. I've always battled my weight. It's easy to blame PCOS and Insulin Resistance for my troubles but it starts and ends with me. I'm an "all or nothing" person 100%.

Last January (January 11th to be exact) I started a program, that for me, took hold. I rocked it until the end of July...no humility here, I seriously did amazing. I felt amazing. Those 6 months led to nearly an 80 lb weight loss.

(left pic, day before I started losing weight and right pic is nearly 4 months in and 50 lbs down)

We went to Vegas in July and that was my first time letting open the floodgates and eating whatever I wanted. It was a fun celebration of all I had done. It was so freeing to get dressed and feel fit and not worry about covering this or what makes me look less fat. You see, I've always had confidence and been fairly active and embraced my role as the chubby chick. But, this was all new. A new level of confidence and, honestly, a person I barely knew. That trip was nothing short of fabulous.
I returned home and started a new journey. A journey called maintenance. Truth be told, this is my hardest journey yet. I find myself trying to eat moderately but spinning off track so pulling in the strings and eating really strict again. I fight the yo-yo mentality that cripples so many people.  My crazy strict dieting has been replaced with a 6 day a week gym routine that I am loving. SERIOUSLY LOVING. My weight has gone up a bit and I'm trying to make peace with that. Overall, I'm solid on working out and making good food choices 80-90% of the time. Will this take continued tweaking? Definitely. I am doing more research in to emotional eating and food addiction and trying to educate myself on how I got where I was and how to never go back. A difficult yet rewarding process.  I've been pretty silent on this blog because I do NOT have it all figured out. I'm not an expert, I haven't ended my journey and reached a final goal (is there ever really a final goal??!)

This brings me to today. It is truly full circle. I got up bright and early and ran my second 5k. RAN. Yes, me. I hate(d) to run. If you ask me about my first 5k (last month) I would tell you I hated the training, hated the race and loved the finish line. That finish line high led me to this race but the big difference is that I enjoyed the training and running the race and can't wait to do another (Dec 22nd, baby!!)

This is not an end to my weight loss journey. It's a "....." to my weight loss/maintenance future. I am proud of myself. I'm passionate about being an active family. I've come to realize that being an active family is extremely intentional, it never just happens. We have many nights where we tag in/out and go the gym. We choose to be intentionally active in our time with Declan (though he needs to prodding to be active). Last week, Decs and I ran hills next to the park. He giggled the entire time before he said he was tired. Yes, this 30 year old had more gas in the tank than he did.

So, I'd like to encourage whoever is reading this and wanting to make a life change. You can do it. Even if it is effort #183 like mine was/is. There is no special start date to wait on, no special diet that you have to follow. Just a healthy decision followed by another healthy decision and so on. When you slip, re-set. Throw the "all or nothing" thinking out the window. It doesn't work. There are celebrations, holidays, illnesses, injuries. You'll never be 100%. But can you can start now. You're worth it. I was worth it and my family is worth it.

Happy Thankgiving, y'all.
Turkey Trot 5k



 Opening day for GUP Kitchen. We are big fans!
 Runza reward for being such a good assistant (who showed 4 houses with me Friday 
and got many compliments at how well behaved he was...I was like "who?". Just kidding. 
He did great):
 Dressed for success (went to work with me):
 Such a sweet kiddo. Love love.
 Cousins rocking Angry Birds:
 Just the start of a little project I did to display Declan's art skills. ;)
 Soaking up the little park time left. The warmer temps are leaving us (sniff, sniff).



No matter
...the craziness
...the selective hearing
...the power struggles,
...there is nothing as precious as my sleeping son.
The hands clasped, doggie right where he always ends up, the sports blanket.
It kills me.



Cute, right? What's the fun of capturing pics on your iphone if you don't dump them off to be remembered. Here's our week.
croup. steroids. sinus infection. antibiotic. doctor visits. crabiness. 
lots of t.v., snuggles and popsicles.
 We escaped crabby mcCrabs (thanks Papa & Nana!) to celebrate Mark's 31st. So fun.
 Ran in to my cutie patootie niece at the bank. She's a ball of sunshine.
 Got to see friends who are oversees missionaries in Poland and Spain via Skype in church today.
 Stuck at a train for 15 minutes on the way to an appt today? Fun with sunflare.
 Soft opening of my BIL's new venture: a yum-o fresh, funky food truck GUP Kitchen:
 Just a little trip to TraderJoes:


30 Days of Thankful - Day 6

Today I am thankful for my husband's support.  There are several reasons that I'm probably a hard person to be married to. One of those would be my crazy arse schedule. Today was one of those days were I was gone from 10:30 to 5:45.  My rock star husband hung with the little man all day. According to Decs, they: played outside, watched t.v., went to Trader Joes (and came home with a bag of gold chocolate coins...random...), took potty breaks, jumped on daddy's back, played video games and played chase. When bed time came, though I was the one gone all day, he wanted daddy to rub his back.

Most men would hate my schedule but my man embraces it. And for that I'm thankful.


30 Days of Thankful - Day 5

Today, I am thankful for a slow Saturday with no commitments.  My weekends are full between running a photography business, selling real estate and our social calendar. Yesterday, I had no appointments to run off to or things pressing that I had to handle. So I started my day watching cartoons snuggled on the couch with Declan. Perfect.
pic by Decs. my little photog.


Friday Dump

Welcome to my Friday iphone dump, 2nd edition. I couldn't include about 10 adorbs pics of my potty training son in his undies and/or sitting on the pot because my husband reminded me there are creepers out there. Darn. I'll just have to save them for his high school graduation video.
 a stroller full of faves:
 Decs trick or treating our street. Big boy!
 Mark's creation. He was proud.
 We held true to our dogless couch oath for, um, 2 months:
 Sophie Mae and those big brown eyes.
 Typical in our house. Little man obsessed with "doing dishes":
 splish, splash


30 Days of Thankful - Day 4

Today I am thankful for laughter. After being trapped inside due to croup and deciding it was the perf time potty train, I am thankful that I can laugh hysterically to the point of crying and feel restored. The happy tears were due to this little gem. Watch and enjoy and then watch again.


30 Days of Thankful - Day 3

Today, I am thankful for community. My life group gals and I came together tonight for some coffee and discussion over the book Calm My Anxious Heart by Linda Dillow. It was refreshing and real and needed.

"Most of us base our contentment on our circumstances, on our feelings, or on other people.  However, true contentment is separate from our circumstances.  Contentment is a state of the heart, not a state of affairs." (Calm My Anxious Heart)

"God...is the blessed controller of all things, the king over all kings and the master of all masters." 
(1 Timothy 6:15 PH)


30 Days of Thankful - Day 2

Today I'm thankful for SNOW. Yes, don't hold me to this in January with 2 feet of snow on the ground but today big, beautiful flakes fell for the first time this year.
This little guy was not happy that I wouldn't let him go play in it. We had a scary night last night dealing with an un-welcomed guest named croup. Bleh. Decs seems to be doing okay today.


Hands down my favorite picture of the week!


30 Days of Thankful - Day 1

It's so important to remember what we are thankful for and I'm going to take the next 30 days to celebrate my blessings - big or small.

Day 1:

Today I am thankful for being the mother to only 1 child. Yes, I know, I'm desperately wanting another child but then I get smacked in the face and reminded how sweet these moments are with my 3 year old side kick. We have so much 1 on 1 time where we play, sing songs, cuddle, test wills, laugh and run errands easily since it's just us. I'm thankful for this season of Declan being our one and only.