Wednesday, May 23, 2018

3 Tips to Fight a Bad Mood

Do you ever have one of those days when you just wake up on the wrong side of the bed? Well, I've had one of those days twice in a row. It's not the best feeling but, it's also not the end of the world.

We can wake up in a bad mood for many different reasons - for me, I think I'm battling some sort of virus. The same virus that my daughter has, yet again. I swear, the sickness is never ending ever since she's been playing with other kids a few days a week at the YMCA child watch. I know this is just all a part of building up her little immune system and, I'm glad that it's happening now, in hopes that she will have to battle less this Fall when she starts preschool!

Waking up on the wrong side of the bed is one thing and, letting the bad mood continue throughout the rest of the day is another.

Yesterday morning, I had a hard time shaking my bad mood. It continued throughout a majority of the morning before I decided to do something about it. Here's the three tips I came up with to shake a bad mood and make sure it doesn't take over your entire day.


1. Don't Be Hard On Yourself

The last thing you need to do is indulge in negative self talk. Everyone has a bad day - everyone has woken up on the wrong side of the bed at some point in their life. It's just a bad day - not a bad life. Remember - this too shall pass.

2. Do Something You Love

Bad mood? It's time to fill your bucket a bit. This can be as easy as taking a break with your favorite coffee, lighting your favorite candle or, in my case, yesterday I went to the gym and ran on the treadmill. Whatever you can do reasonably within your day to fill your bucket a bit - treat yourself to it.

3. Fake It Until You Make It 

If this truly is the occasional bad mood/wake up on the wrong side of the bed situation - then you could try to just fake it until you make it! Don't feel like smiling? Smile anyway! Speak gently, even if you want to scream. Just - fake it until you are finally feeling as calm and happy as you appear to be.

However, if these feelings are more consistent and more frequent than the occasional day or two, then "fake it until you make it" may be one of the worst things you could do. If you notice you're feeling low or off for more than a couple days and can't identify the reason then, you may want to investigate further and/or seek the advice of a doctor.

Readers, do you have any other tips for fighting a bad mood? I'd say I'm asking for a friend but, you already know the truth.

Tuesday, May 22, 2018

Day in the Life + Healthy Living Vlog

Hey everyone! I hope Monday wasn't too rough on you.

One of the most requested topics on the blog is for a peak into my daily life. I filmed a lot of footage last week and, managed to make a 7 minute vlog, sharing a full day in my life. The footage in this video was all from last Thursday, May 17th.


I hope you enjoyed this peak into our day! They aren't all this easy and fun but, this was a really great day!

Monday, May 21, 2018

Piper's First Fishing Derby 2018

Yesterday, Piper participated in her first fishing derby! It was actually her first time fishing, ever. She loved it! Piper won 1st place for her age range (1 - 5 yrs.) and she won 2nd place for the biggest fish overall! We were so proud and, she was, too!



Piper has been asking to go fishing for a while now. Nick and I don't know anything about fishing and so, we were super grateful that Nick's brother is basically a pro and was super excited to help Piper out! We couldn't have done any of this without Uncle Jason.



Uncle Jason was so good with Piper at the fishing derby. He had so much patience with her and, took the time to explain everything to her. I think these two fishing buddies are going to have a lot of fun in these coming years.





Nick and I are going to have to learn a little more about fishing now that we have a 3 year old champion fisherman living in our house. Uncle Jason took the winning fish over to be mounted and we should have the prize fish ready to be put on display in about 10 months. It's going to be his Christmas present to Piper -- how stinking cute!





I never was a fan of fishing until Piper became interested. Now, I couldn't be more excited to support her interest in it all.


I could have never dreamt this little girl up if I tried. We are so blessed to have her in our lives.

Friday, May 18, 2018

Making Sushi at Home

Another day, another video. Who would have guessed?

I am really having fun recording YouTube videos for my channel so, I'm just going to go with it. Earlier this week, I recorded a video making sushi for the first time!


Spoiler alert: it wasn't a FAIL!

I have made sushi a couple times now and, I must say, I am pretty good at it!


This last time I made sushi, I bought a bag of breaded shrimp and made the best tempura shrimp roll with yum yum sauce on top. Oh man, it was amazing!

Readers, have you ever made sushi at home before or do you think you'll try it?

Thursday, May 17, 2018

Eating Out + Gym Balance

Happy Thursday!

I have been loving the gym lately. Really, truly, loving it! This past week, I tried out the stair stepper for the first time at my gym. Prior to this week, I had always been too intimidated to try it. It is a really tall piece of gym equipment! But, I faced my fear and gave it a shot and, I'm so glad that I did! I definitely worked out some muscles that I wasn't use to working out that day. I gave myself some extra stretches after that workout.


At the beginning of May, I made it a goal to only eat out twice a week and, believe it or not, I managed to fail kind of hard at this goal. I was counting going out to ice cream as "eating out" and so, we ate out about three times a week, each week. We really like ice cream season. We also love family dinner dates.



Despite all of our eating out lately, I am still hanging around the same weight of 237 lbs! Woot woot! I am really excited about eating all of the yummy food we've been eating and NOT gaining weight.  Obviously that's not the goal but, it is a relief. Working out in the gym is helping me keep my balance.


Not only have I been going to the gym but, we've been taking a lot of walks outside lately, too.


How cute is Piper with her baby? I just had to share that picture of her - given the post I shared earlier this week.

Thanks for stopping by today! Make it a great one, everyone!

Wednesday, May 16, 2018

Mother's Day Vlog

Happy Wednesday! Today, I wanted to share a little vlog that I filmed throughout Mother's Day this past Sunday. I hope you enjoy!


Mother's Day was a really great day. I am so blessed to be Piper's mama!

Tuesday, May 15, 2018

Gym Vlog + Grocery Haul

Happy Tuesday, everyone!

This weekend, I went to the gym for the first time in weeks. It was like 6 p.m. on a Saturday and I just decided to go for it! I am so glad that I did. When I got to the gym, I just felt like running and so, despite my knees being bad, I went for it.

Running felt so good! I only ended up with some minor knee pain later on that night and the day afterward. I know running isn't something I can do consistently right now at this weight, for my knees sake, but, I love it so much!

I recorded a gym vlog and grocery haul on Saturday and shared it on my YouTube channel. If you don't follow me there, you might want to start - I've been loving YouTube lately as a quick way to share updates of my journey! You can follow along at: www.youtube.com/goaloflosing or watch the video, below!


That's all for now. Hope to see you back here, tomorrow!

Monday, May 14, 2018

Faith Over Fear + A Second Child

For all those celebrating yesterday, Happy Mother's Day!

For many years, being a mother was a distant dream, a secret one that I only kept to myself. I had been told for years by a couple different doctors that I'd likely never have any children of my own (I have polycystic ovarian syndrome) and, so to protect my heart, I didn't let myself dream very often about being a mother, let alone tell anyone other than Nick that I wanted kids one day.

That protection mechanism kicked back in after after we were finally blessed with our daughter, Piper. People were quick to ask in that first year if we'd have another child and my first reaction when asked was a fearful "no".

Fear dictated my answer to this question for a couple of years, for a few different reasons. I was fearful of my body's capability to conceive and carry another child. I was fearful of the recovery of another c-section while being so overweight. I was fearful of our ability, financially and otherwise, to care for a second child. I was fearful of disappointment and heartbreak, should we go through another miscarriage. I was fearful of changing our family dynamic. I was fearful of the wait.


After a while, my fearful "no" became a fearful "maybe". With fear comes doubt and, before long, "maybe" was the only answer I had as to whether or not we'd try for a second child. {Waiting for clarity is hard. The book "Wait and See" by Wendy Pope helps.}

Before moving forward, let me just say, fear, doubt and guilt really like to hang out together. 

Whenever I let myself think about my "maybe" turning into a "yes", guilt found it's way to me. I felt guilty for even thinking about wanting a second child. We had been so incredibly blessed with one miracle baby; a baby that was never guaranteed to us, even in the final hours of her birth through emergency c-section. How could I possibly think about trying for another child? To push our luck? To risk the heartbreak?

I realize that worrying about "pushing our luck" and "risking heartbreak" were my ways of minimizing the glory and power of God.
Proverbs 3: 5-6
Trust in the Lord with all your heart, and do not lean on your own understanding. In all your ways acknowledge him, and he will make straight your paths.
When Piper turned 3 years old, I sought God on many occasion for the right answer to the question "should we be trying for another child". Along with the support and encouragement of my husband, I felt the stir in my heart but, fear kept winning.

Earlier this year, I came to realize that I spent too many years being too distracted with fear, doubt and guilt to hear His answer to my question. It took a while to come to that realization but, once I had, I began faithfully praying for clarity beyond fear.

I prayed for God to help me see His will for my life and our family -- that if it be His will for us to have a second child, that we will be called at the right timing -- in His perfect timing.

Speaking of His perfect timing - the sermon at church this weekend definitely seemed to come to me in His perfect timing. I've shared the recording of the sermon, below.



At about 20 minutes in, it was said that "in the waiting, prayer opens our heart to filling our deepest and our truest need. A relationship with the Father." Yes. A thousand times, yes. A couple minutes later, Sarah shares how to begin praying persistently. It's definitely worth watching. I'll be coming back to it, myself, over and over.


If ever we should be so blessed with a second child, I rest in His grace and in knowing that it will all be in His perfect timing and, by His will alone.

Please pray for us.

Friday, May 11, 2018

This Week's Win + Rambling

Happy Friday, readers!

Did you have any wins this week? I have a small one to share! Lately, I have been adding a couple slices of lemon to my water and it has been so refreshing! It's been keeping my water a little more interesting and, I've noticed that since revisiting this little trick, I've been reaching my water goal {of 120 oz.} each day!


This week, I have been diving deep into the depths of Pinterest for some inspiration and motivation. My favorite Pinterest board is my Living with Intention board and I've been loading it up with some Brene Brown quotes. My pastor shared a couple of her Ted Talks with me and, she's been a favorite of mine ever since.

Here's a fun pin, created from her book "The Gifts of Imperfection".


{source}

I haven't read her book yet but, I'll be putting it on my wish list!

Right now, I'm still reading "Wait and See" by Wendy Pope -- for reasons that I plan to share with you all soon. I think I'll just need to watch Brene Brown's Ted Talk on Vulnerability a few more times to work up the courage, first.

Have a great weekend, everyone!

Wednesday, May 9, 2018

Weigh-In + Grilling Season

Yesterday was weigh-in day... technically. I made it a goal to only weigh myself once per week in May and since May started on a Tuesday, I deemed Tuesday my weigh-in day for the month! 

Truth be told, I didn't only weigh myself on Tuesday. I did jump on the scale a couple more times before then. I feel like it was more out of habit than anything though. It wasn't every day so, eh, progress is progress. I still have the urge to check the scale every day but, I'm getting better at not.

Anyway, my official Tuesday weigh-in showed a loss on the scale! I was so excited, I literally did a happy dance!

May 1st: 239 lbs.
May 8th: 237.8 lbs.

I am so excited to be losing weight again! I feel like I did so well in April and, the scale didn't show me any love. This loss is long overdue!

Last night, as I was eating dinner with my family on our patio, I was reminded of a big reason I was able to lose more weight in the summer last year: grilling season! 


Our family loves grilled vegetables and last night, the vegetables filled up most of my plate at dinner. They are so, so delicious! I am planning on grilling out as much as possible now that the weather is in our favor!

Readers, what are your favorite things to grill when the weather gets nice out?

Monday, May 7, 2018

Weekend Wrap-Up: Zoo Trip + Picnic with Friends

I spent a couple extra moments laying in bed, trying to figure out what day it was this morning. I forgot how fast the weekends fly by when the weather is nice! We had a jam packed weekend, full of fun!

Saturday

Saturday morning started out slow but quickly gained momentum. It started out with family breakfast around the table, courtesy of Nick. He loves to cook our weekend breakfast; it's something we all look forward to each week. He made some of Piper's favorite "daddy bacon" which is what we call real, thick cut bacon in our house. Turkey bacon is coined for mama - hah.

After breakfast, Nick started working on the bathroom renovation upstairs. He sanded the drywall and prepped it all for paint while Piper and I hung out downstairs.

Around noon, we had a quick lunch before heading out to the zoo - Piper's idea! It was a good choice, too. We couldn't have asked for a better zoo day - both the carousel and the train were open and the weather was perfect!









After the zoo, we went out to eat at Moe's to celebrate Cinco De Mayo. 



Really though, we probably would have ended up at Moe's anyway because it's our current family favorite.

Sunday

On Sunday morning, we all found ourselves around the table again with more "daddy bacon" on our plates. We had a little time before church and so, I grabbed the dogs and was about to head out for a walk when Piper said she wanted to join. Nick stayed back and worked on the bathroom a bit more while I went for a walk with all of my kids!

Piper likes to hold on to Max's leash when we go for walks because he tends to walk a little slower than Topher. It's so cute to watch her walk with the dogs. A slow, quiet walk outside in the warm, fresh air was a great start to our Sunday!


After our walk, we got back home, showered and dressed just in time to make it to Sunday's service. It was baptism Sunday and so, the tears were flowing. It was such a great service!

When we got back home, we had a light lunch and a little bit of resting time. When I say resting time, I mean I folded laundry on the bed while Piper rested in her room with a show and Nick fixed the man-door on our garage that had been needing some TLC.

Later in the afternoon, we headed over to our friend's, Steve and Mindy's, house for a picnic with their family. It was the perfect evening for grilling out! Piper had so much fun playing with Steve and the kids. 

We got back home just in time for bath-time and bedtime. It was a great end to a fun-filled weekend!

Friday, May 4, 2018

Mom-Guilt, Losing Patience and Tempers

Good morning, readers. It's 8 a.m. and, I've already pressed the re-do button on this day. While I hope Piper sleeps in a few moments longer so I can write my thoughts out for you all, I also can't wait for her to wake up so I can give her a big hug. We both need one.

Do you ever lose your patience and temper? No? Of course not, right? Hah. Well, this morning, I did. I woke up on the wrong side of the bed, with Piper screaming at me through the monitor, in a very heated and nasty way. I looked at my FitBit and it was a little after 6 a.m. This was not going to be the way we started our day, I thought to myself.

I went into her room with the intention of giving her patience and, my patience was quickly spent. Three-year old's have a special way of sucking the patience right out of you sometimes. I know I'm not alone. It's a common trait of this age. Add still being sick to both of our accounts and, just like that, my patience was spent. I was quick to anger, a raised-voice and threats. Piper just gasped, broke into tears and fell into me with a hug. Enter mom-guilt.

I rubbed her back until she calmed down and was ready to lay back down. I told her it would be "morning time" soon and, she fell back to sleep almost instantly. She definitely needed the extra sleep and, I needed a little time to cool down and collect myself.

I heated myself up a warm cup of hot chocolate, opened up the windows to let some cool, wet air enter the house and, sat in my favorite chair in the back room while looking out over our yard. 

I wanted to just dwell on my mistake and let the mom-guilt eat me up for my failure but, my experience (yes, it's been 3 years, I can now draw from some motherly experience!) shows that just isn't productive or warranted. Mom's aren't perfect. Dad's aren't perfect. People aren't perfect. We all slip up. We all have bad mornings, bad days, bad nights, bad seasons. As easy as it is to dwell, grace and resilience are my allies in these moments.


As I sat there with my hot chocolate, looking out the window, I noticed there were buds on the trees. It's the beginning of May and, our trees usually have buds and some blooms by now. My husband and I were just saying last night that we were wondering if the apple tree and some others would even bud this year because of the long winter we had. Then, just like that, the buds begin to appear this morning.

This is reminiscent of the hard seasons and moments we all go through in life.

I was so inspired by the buds that, I went outside to capture them. I set my hot chocolate and the monitor on the work bench my husband has been using to help build a play house for Piper this week and, started walking through the wet grass in my flip flops. It felt so good.


The buds on the trees are a sign that the harsh season is over. The buds on the trees are a promise of a bloom. We all go through hard times, some more hard than others. This is a reminder that it won't last forever. One day, you'll wake up and there will be buds on the trees and, then, they will bloom.


Just give yourself grace in the wait.

Wednesday, May 2, 2018

Out of Whack + Still Winning

I posted my goals for May yesterday and, I already put them into practice.

Yesterday, I stepped on the scale just to get my initial reading for the month. I weighed in at 239 lbs. I almost stepped on the scale again this morning - out of habit - and stopped myself when I remembered my goal of only stepping on the scale once per week. Win!

As for tracking my nutrition, I almost didn't even do it yesterday - and it was the first day of May! C'mon! I ended up tracking my nutrition for the entire day last minute, in my car at like 10:00 p.m., before I went inside from a late-night trip to the store for some necessities. The fact that I didn't even eat dinner until 9 p.m. last night should be telling of just how out of whack and busy my day was - and yes, I'm still sick. However, I did feel well enough to put some make-up on and do my hair!


Unfortunately, my husband went downhill pretty fast after he got home from work so, it was my turn to hold down the fort. I'm very use to him doing bath time and Piper's bedtime routine; it's usually my time to get a few things done but, since he was down, I was on duty all day and night. Hence the 9 p.m. dinner for myself and late night trip to the store after everyone else had already gone to bed.

Despite being hectic and draining, yesterday was still a very good day. The sun was shining and it got up to summer-like temperatures. Even after I got home from my late-night shopping trip, it was about 70 degrees outside. I just sat in my car, with the windows down, tracking my nutrition. I stayed in my car for a while, just looking up at the stars, counting my blessings. I am so looking forward to more summer nights like this, coming soon, when we are all finally well and free from these nasty bugs we've been passing around. 

Tuesday, May 1, 2018

May Goals | 2018

It's May! It's May! It's May!

We are coming out of what feels like the longest winter ever {even though it has been "Spring" for a little while now} and, arriving in May just feels like we've made our way out. We had temperatures in the 40's this past weekend and, I'm just so over it. Today is suppose to be warm and sunny and, I am so glad!

Now that it's May, I am ready to make new goals for the month.

{source}

Goal #1 - Only step on the scale once per week.

Okay, so I talked about tossing out the scale for the entire month of May but, I do still like to measure my progress and use the scale as extra accountability. I noticed in April, I was stepping on the scale almost every single day. So, in May, I am making it a goal to only step on the scale one a week, for accountability's sake. I'll be asking my husband to hide the scale until weigh-in day, each week!

Goal #2 - Practice better moderation by eating out no more than twice per week.

Oh man, I wanted to write once per week, I really did but, you guys... it's ice cream season. We've been waiting through a very long winter to get to go to our local ice cream stand and, while I don't plan on using both "eating-out tickets" on ice cream each week, I do hope we go out at least once a week for our favorite summer treat!

Also, another reason I am giving myself two "tickets" to eat out each week is because one of our favorite places opens back up this month -- White Turkey Drive-In. They have the best cheeseburgers  in the world and so, I feel like this is the month where a lot of eating-out typically occurs. 

While it may not sound like a very hard goal, to limit eating out to only twice per week, I do think it is attainable and, I want attainable goals that inspire me to stay on track. I think limiting it to twice per week is just reasonable for us in this month, all things considered. It's certainly less than what we've done in the past, which was go out to the ice cream stand after dinner every night of the week. I will just have to be hyper vigilant on making sure I have room in my calorie-range to spend on eating out and, not doing it more than twice per week. 

This is a prime example of what I mean when I say moderation over deprivation. I just know what works for me and, if I were to say only once per week, I would fail the moment White Turkey opens and our family/friends want to meet out to eat or, when we've already gone out for ice cream with Piper but, a date night is also on the books that week.

Goal #3 - 120 oz. of water per day

Honestly. Come on. This is such an easy one and yet, it's been so hard for me lately. I think it's because I've been letting myself drink more pop, which, I usually don't do at all. If I focus on drinking 120 oz. of water each day, there will be no room for much else in way of pop.

Goal #4 - Track calories every day, whether or not I'm going over calories.

This should be a good goal for me this month because I have a habit of just not tracking on the days that I know I'll be going over calories. I do think it's important, though, to track every day and this month, I'm going to give it a shot!

So, those are my goals for the month! Readers, what goals are you going to be working on this month?