Thursday, August 28, 2014

Thursday Things

1) First things first (I'm the realest ...) COLLEGE FOOTBALL STARTS!!! THIS WEEK!!! (Overuse of exclamation points totally intentional.) Even though my team is predicted to lose against the local junior high, I'm still excited. GO HOGS!

2) Fourth week of school and already one of the boys came home sick. He's fine now but I really think that must be a record in our family for Sickness After School Begins. 

3) Made these Skinnytaste grilled veggie towers to go with dinner last night. I tweaked some (no eggplant; used provolone instead of mozzarella) but they were seriously OH SO GOOD. The next time I think I might nix the cheese (I know! Who AM I?)

Mine look NOTHING like hers.  I'll choose to believe it's because I stacked the veggies differently.  Yeah.  That's totally it.

4) Kyan lost his two front teeth and I think he looks ADORABLE. I love the toothless stage, before their big old chicklet teeth come in.

5) Disney sent me a mailer the other day with the best dates for my family to visit -- the weeks were Fall Break and Spring Break. I'm almost certain I've never told Disney where my kids go to school. This means - I'm assuming - they have someone who looks at zip codes, finds the school district within zip codes, and looks up school holidays. I would cool with that job. Particularly if it included Disney discounts ... I'm just sayin' ...

6) My daughter is four and she makes Barbie kiss Captain America all the time. I'm wondering if I should be concerned. 

Also, girlfriend needs a Ken doll or five. 

7) This wins the internet this week. Back to School: the 70's vs Today

8) And this comes in second. If Guy BFF's Acted Like Girl BFF's

9) I can't believe it's already Labor Day! Four months from now we'll be gearing up for New Years Eve and to ring in ... 2015. Twenty-effing-fifteen. 

10) Shoutout to my girl Rella for this little gem:

Wednesday, August 27, 2014

The More You Know

That girl had no clue
And she apparently wore white pants
Colleges and universities in this part of the country got back into the swing of things this week.  It makes me a little reminiscent of sixteen years ago (WHAT?!?) when I was heading off to college for the first time.  Man . . . I can't believe how different I am from that 18-year-old girl. I can't believe how many things have happened in my life, how many things have changed, how many things I've learned.

If I could go back in time, here are just a few things I would tell that 18-year-old girl:

1) Wear sunscreen on your face. Always. Don't ever skip it. And maybe even carry a sunscreen stick in your purse. Seriously.
I never EVER thought time would be marching across my forehead so viciously at the age of thirty-four.  A lot of my wrinkles are hereditary (thanks, Dad!) but I also know that if I'd bee a little more indulgent with the sunscreen back in the day then maybe there wouldn't be quite so many.  Teenagers and twenty-somethings: START TAKING CARE OF YOUR FACE NOW!
2) Nice guys are hot.
That hottie that's also a douchebag? Yeah, when he's middle aged he's still going to be a douchebag -- just with a beer belly and receding hairline. The guy who is nice will - hopefully - always be nice.  If he's 18 and not a douchebag, then his mama probably raised him right.

3) It's possible to grow to be physically attracted to someone.
Because, again, nice guys? They're hot. Don't ever immediately discount someone just because you don't think you're attracted to them.  An attractive personality is SO MUCH HOTTER than a nice body.

4) Your only "type" should be the guy who makes you laugh.
Having a "type" of person you date is a great way to end up constantly crying into a pint of Ben and Jerry's. 

5) The whole opposites attract thing is overrated.
 You very well may end up attracted to someone completely opposite from you.  But, believe me, things are easier when your partner shares common interests, beliefs, and even if they grew up similarly to you.

6) It really is very possible that many of your beliefs will change so much in the years between 20 and 30.
So watch how closely you defend something you think you believe in -- especially if that belief is bigoted or puts others down. 

OMG. Freaking work out, okay? 

8) Appreciate your body
I can remember being 19/20 and going to the pool at my apartment complex in SHORTS that covered my bathing suit bottoms.  Why?  Because thunder thighs.  Because stretch marks.  My legs looked better at that age than they ever, ever have.  I would do almost ANYTHING to have those 19-year-old legs back. 
9) And also your metabolism.
Look, you're coming up on the years where do much as looking at a piece of chocolate will instantly make you gain five pounds. Eat the food now! While you still can!  (But still work out!)

10) Don't spend your 20's thinking you have to be in a relationship or looking for "The One" and don't ever, ever, EVER settle.
Who CARES if everyone else is getting married? You know what's worse than being in your 30's and never being married? Being in your 30's and trudging through divorce. Spend that decade finding yourself, exploring your interests, TRAVELING, having fun, and figuring our what you really want in "The One."  It will make life at 30 and beyond so much sweeter . . .

Tuesday, August 26, 2014

Back on Track: Week One

When I lost weight after I had Kyan, I counted weight watchers points. I pretty much always carried a point deficit. I had in my head that I couldn't eat all my daily points or I'd never lose the weight. Yeah, not smart. I never delved into eating disorder territory but I am smart enough to know that I didn't lose weight the healthy way. It's been six and a half years and ... I'm not going to lie ... sometimes I still fall into that mindset. I know that 1200 is the absolute minimum of calories a persons body needs and with that number in my head, I sometimes get stuck on it. I know better. I really do. But it's still occasionally a struggle. I'm trying to lose weight and I NEED 1600 calories a day? What the?? That's what my mind says. But I'm working out hard and I know I have to feed my body!

And, please, feel free to roll your eyes about the above paragraph. I would. I just get in this crazy mindset when I'm in "balls to the wall" mode. 

Week One of getting back on track actually went great. Really great. I made it to the gym five days, did 3.5 miles one day I didn't hit the gym. I stayed within my macros and calories. My cheat for the week was beer at the ball game Friday night.  I went out to eat before the game and ordered grilled chicken. I KNOW!

My biggest struggle has been getting my protein without going over on fat. It's hard! I didn't realize it would be so difficult. 

I didn't weigh myself last Monday. I knew I would be carrying water weight from the weekend. And also? I knew the number would depress me. Going off what I weighed the Friday before I started, I lost 3.8 pounds last week. Not too shabby, amiright?  I still want to lose ten pounds by J's birthday on October 10th -- that will put right smack dab in the middle of my "happy weight" range.

I thought I would share a few things I've been eating. I feel like I must be doing something right because, honestly, I haven't been all that hungry between meals. 

This was my dinner two different nights (one night there was no mac and cheese because, let's face it, that stuff never lasts around my house.) It's turkey sausage sautéed with banana peppers, kraut, green beans (canned. Sorry not sorry: I freaking LOVE canned green beans), squash sautéed in coconut oil with minced garlic, and a teensy serving of macaroni and cheese. The next time I ate this, I went heavier on the turkey sausage.

Oh, yummy! I split and toasted a wheat English muffin, smothered some Laughing Cow on, then topped each half with a fried egg and a slice of turkey bacon. I also eat this without the English muffin and Laughing Cow sometimes. It is SO good. Also - for the record, I'm weird and I LIKE turkey bacon.  Don't get me wrong -- real bacon is where my heart is but it's really nice of turkey bacon to not have all that grease.

I mainly took this picture because LOOK! IT'S AN OMELET AND NOT SCRAMBLED EGGS! This one is just three egg whites and a couple tablespoons of shredded cheese, topped with salsa verde. When I go grocery shopping, I'll get things like onions and peppers and spinach to take things up a notch. 

I was eating lunch out the other day and decided on CFA mainly because I knew they had these two things: grilled nuggets and a fruit cup. I asked for both buffalo sauce and honey mustard but thought the nuggets tasted better in honey mustard. This is a seriously low-cal meal but it cost nearly $9 with a large drink! Wtf? I could've eaten Chipotle for that!

Weekends have always been my biggest challenge and the past one was pretty easy (probably because my BFF was out of town!) I know the one coming up will be much more difficult ... I'm going to a concert Friday night. Football starts on Saturday. I won't have the kids (which always makes me want to invite Riesling and Chardonnay over for a threesome.) Monday is Labor Day. It's going to be a tough weekend. But I'm determined! Hoping to lose two more pounds this week!

Monday, August 25, 2014


Authentic Weather: keeping it real on my phone since last Friday.
It was a relatively mild summer here in Memphis. Until this past week. It's been typical August-in-the-midsouth weather with triple digits and heat advisories. But the rest of the summer was so mild that the past seven or eight days make us feel like we're gon' die, y'all!

It was a steamy weekend. 

Karis and I went to the gym pool after my workout Friday morning. I really want to teach her to swim but she hardly even got in the water! 

She laid around, ate Goldfish crackers, and tried flirting with a guy who was sunbathing. 

How does a four-year-old flirt?

By telling off-color-for-the-preschool-crowd jokes. 

Knock knock!
Who's there?

That was . . . fun.
I'm not going to snark.  I'm not going to snark.  I'm not going to snark.
Oh, hell.  You can't see her face.  I'm going to snark.
WTF with that lady's hair, y'all?  A side pony tail AND a scrunchie AND hair still down in the back?  So many things going on.  I don't even know where to start.
Friday night I went to the Redbirds game because, you know, it was only a heat index of 105 at 8:00 at night. I was seriously sweating to the point that I looked like I'd completed an intense workout. Game was fun, though, Redbirds won and it was probably my last baseball game of the season. Afterwards we went to Silky's wherein my friend and I decided this guy looked enough like Jon Gruden to take a picture with him and his wife:

Taking pictures with strangers is the hallmark of a good Friday night.  Blurry pics means your friend who was taking the picture had a DAMN good Friday night.

Saturday was a total bust. I worked out that morning and when I went to pick the kids up, Kyan was crying. He fell and hurt his arm and a guy there had me convinced it was fractured. Our plans to go swimming were scrapped as I headed to Urgent Care. Luckily, Kyan started moving his arm and said it didn't hurt anymore. We went home and seriously sent the remainder of the day just being grouchy with each other.

More on the arm in a bit.

Sunday was better. We made it to the pool and played for a couple hours. I'm pretty sure the gym pool closes after Labor Day (why?? It's usually still so hot here!) so this was probably our last Sunday Funday at the outdoor pool. 

On the way home, a kamikaze bird hit my car.  The bird hit my car.  I did not hit it.  Didn't stop my boys from referring to me as the Birderer (bird murder.)

So how did we cap off our Sunday?  Well, we spent the evening at minor medical.  Fun, huh?  Kyan kept holding his arm and couldn't raise it without bending at the elbow.  Better safe than sorry so I took him in to make sure it wasn't fractured.  Turns out, he has an elbow contusion and just has to rest it for a few days.  The peace of mind was worth the (minimal) co-pay to find that out!

Thursday, August 21, 2014

Thursday Things

1) Am I the only one wondering if Jill Duggar-Dillard will have one of those nine pound preemies?

Yes, I realize saying that makes me an asshole. And I'm sure they got pregnant on the honeymoon. But DAMN. Did they even wait for the stick to dry before announcing to the WHOLE ENTIRE WORLD? Jeez. 

2) I was away from my gym so long that it's changed owners, the hottie trainer is no longer there, and K's favorite childcare worker has left. Luckily, Karis likes the new girl in charge of childcare ... even though she calls her by the other girl's name ...

3) My boys are wrapping up their third week of school. So far, so good. I hate homework but, other than that, it's smooth sailing. So far. 

4) Speaking of school ... the other day J got his results for the standardized test he took in first grade. It came with a 26 page (half English/ half Spanish) booklet explaining the results. Wtf? Was that completely necessary?

5) I think I'm probably the only person in the world who isn't looking forward to sweaters, boots, and pumpkin spice lattes. Really, Starbucks? Rolling out the pumpkin spice in AUGUST? We're still sweating our asses off in Memphis and will be for another month. 

6) Know what I am looking forward to though? COLLEGE FOOTBALL. Just a few more days! We're almost there!

7) Speaking of football ... it's not college but I saw this the other day and it

8) I was listening to the radio the other day and the DJ introduced a "throwback" that reminded him of growing up. The song he played? "Anything But Mine." That's one of my favorite Kenny songs but in what universe is that considered a throwback? I mean, really. 

9) This was my #tbt last week. My grandfather in his Army days and me a couple weeks ago. A fam'ly tradition?

10) Truth:

Wednesday, August 20, 2014

Elena's Taco Shop

I love fish tacos.


There's a good chance I would choose them for my last meal.  Because, yeah, love.

You know what you can't find in Memphis?  Good fish tacos.  Let's be real . . . you pretty much cannot find any good tacos . . . any good Mexican food . . . in Memphis at all.  I'm just sayin'.

I heard that Elena's Taco Shop in Bartlett had good "southern California" style tacos so I knew I had to give it a try.  I may have a whole lot of Texas in my heart but, I can't lie, I'm more fond of Cali-style when it comes to my Mexican food.  (Don't give up on me, TexMex!  I still love you too!  A fat girl can have two loves!)

A friend and I checked out Elena's on a Tuesday evening.  We were the only people dining in, though several others came in and got their orders to go.  The credit card machine was down which kinda sucked but what can you do?

I ordered the two taco plate and elected to go with fish and carne asada.  My friend chose the same, going with fish and shrimp (also -- it was his first time trying fish tacos.  Whaaaaa?)  The plates also came with rice and beans.

The food was . . . it was good.  It wasn't great. And while they may bill it as "southern California style," I'll be honest in that anything I had in California KICKED THE ASS of the tacos I had at Elena's.  THAT SAID.  The "secret sauce" on the fish taco was finger licking good and the tacos were better than anything I've ever had in Memphis.  For Memphis?  Elena's is the bomb (dot) com.  I didn't eat the rice (not a big rice fan) and the beans were standard for anything you find in a mid-south area "Mexican" restaurant.

My biggest "complaint" is that the only diet drink they had was Diet Coke.  B-yuck.  And, hello, it was a Mexican restaurant!  Where for art thou, Corona?  Dos Equis?

There is no ambiance at all.  None.  The restaurant is located next to a gas station, they take your order at the counter and bring it out to you.  No wait staff was to be seen.  You don't go to a place like this for the atmosphere. 

It wasn't the best CaliMex food I've ever had, that's for sure.  But it was good.  And I'll definitely be trying it again.  Next time I'll check out the carne asada fries!

Tuesday, August 19, 2014

All Fun and Games Until Your Jeans Don't Fit

I have had a really great summer. 

A really, really great summer. 

So great that I have about 10-15 pounds of that summer fun hanging around. I'm not sure exactly how much as I've decided not to step on the scale until Friday. All I know is my clothes don't fit right and I'm carrying around a food baby. 

This is one year's difference:

The poses aren't the same but you can still tell ... arm is sporting some extra flab, hips have spread more, thicker in the thigh, and I'm just all over a little wider. 

10-15 pounds isn't that big of a deal. I know. But what if I don't lose it and then gain another 10 next year and another 10 the year after that and so on? That's not okay. I worked really hard to lose weight after Kyan, and again after Karis, and I refuse to throw away all that hard work just to gain all the weight back. 

So, starting yesterday I'm back at it. 

No more excuses. I'm hoping to lose 10 pounds by J's birthday in October. 

Here's my plan:

I'm hitting the gym hard once again. I got out of practice over the summer and I'm going to get back in the routine. I went yesterday evening and thought I was gonna die. But ya know what? Worth it. I'm hoping to go four days a week, work out at home (or walk/ jog/ run at Shelby Farms) two days a week.

I'm once again using My Fitness Pal to track my eating. This has always worked super well for me because it keeps me in check. I'm also trying my hand at tracking my macros for the first time via IIFYM. Yesterday was only my first day, of course, but I was really surprised that I had so many carbs left over! I'm not sure if yesterday was just a weird day or perhaps I've trained myself to not "need" as many carbs. 

Limited alcohol. I'm not drinking at home -- I'll only have drinks when I go out and that will only be once a week. I'm also not going to drink at other people's homes. So if a friend invites me over, instead of picking up a six-pack of Blue Moon, I'll be taking a couple bottles of water. Most fun girl at the par-tay, right heeeuh!

I'm not eating off my kids' plates.  This one is so hard!  I have a really bad habit of taking a taste of this or a bite of that.  I'm trying really, really hard not to!

Yes, I'll have a cheat meal.  If I go out Saturday night and want to have a couple drinks, then I'm going to have a couple drinks.  I'm not going to deprive myself.  Yes, I may want to lose a few pounds but I'm not going to do it while depriving myself.  I like having a damn good time more than I like having a damn good body! 

Finally, I'm going to write about my efforts here in order to have some sort of accountability with myself.

So, let's see, ten pounds by October 10th.  Lessss do dis thang!
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