Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Spring 2013

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WW Update

I'm a pretty lousy blogger.  Blame the kids.  They're so darn NEEDY.  Geesh.

But a quick update on my Weight Watchers quest.  It's good news.

As of yesterday, I've lost a total of 40 pounds since Caden was born and 15 pounds since starting WW and running.  I look different.  I feel different.  It's fantastic.

I count religiously every day.  I have to be careful that I don't start eyeballing stuff too much or slipping -- it's easy to do once you've been at this for a couple of months.  But generally, it's going well.

I've found that my best weeks for points and sanity are the ones when I grab my big WW cookbook, pick out 4 recipes, create a shopping list, and get a ton of extra veggies and fruit at the store.  Michael seems to like the recipes in the WW book (whew, because he doesn't usually like my more epicurean experiments) and they are generally easy to make.  Very simple, American-type fare.  I've also delved into a couple of websites dedicated to WW recipes that helps round out the process a bit.

And I'm working out much more consistently than before.  At first, it was hard to figure out how to get it all stuffed into the week without losing my mind.  But I finally got my act together and found the right nooks.  So far, it's only running, but I'm able to run 2-3 times during a work week and maybe once on the weekend.

I'm also putting challenges up for myself, which has done wonders for my confidence!  I did my first 5k (Race Against Violence) in West Chester a couple weekends ago.  It felt GREAT!  I had a solid time and ended without injury and with a smile on my face.  I immediately signed up for another and loaded a 10k training plan into my RunKeeper app on my phone.  I'm hooked again!

My next big step is meeting with a trainer for the first time, which happens tomorrow.  I'm guessing it's for a fitness assessment and then a training session?  Not sure (probably should figure that out.) I have Michael to thank for this -- it's a Christmas gift from him and I'm so happy to finally be in a place to use it.  Plus, he's watching the kids while I get my butt kicked in the gym, so double bonus husband points!

Right now, I'm averaging about 1.2 pounds lost each week.  I'm going to start adding more strength into the picture with the advice of the trainer.  I'm also going to try to keep up with the gradual increase of mileage in running and start adding in intervals to help blast calories and make me a bit faster, too.  If I've learned anything from this, it's that small goals add up and to be PATIENT! 

Onward and Upward!

Olivia, March & April

You are two and almost a half.  OH BOY are you two.  Seriously.  You've embraced the entirety of the definition that make parents of older children quake in their shoes.  We still love you to pieces, but holy hell are TWO.

You started swim classes, which is good because I needed to gain insight into whether or not it was normal to be this totally fearless in the water.  Turns out you've raised the eyebrows of your instructor.  And here we go.

I've recently abandoned your obsession with Little Einsteins, which only a month ago was where the sun set and rose.  Now, you're obsessed with tea parties and Daddy's poker chip set.  I'm considering it a wash in the parenting analysis.

You have learned the art of negotiating.  Or maybe it's tortuous wearing down of your opposition.  Either way, it will serve you well in business or law school.

Your girly side is emerging slowly.  No doubt, your favorite place is digging in the dirt, but you now allow us to put pigtails in your hair on a regular basis and possibly a headband for 10 minutes or so.  You've even requested dresses.  An interesting evolution.

We go on hikes now, you and I.  It's amazing for me, and I think you have a great time, too.  Sometimes you let Caden come along for kicks and giggles.  You especially love the felled trees ("oh no, mommy!  broken!") and walking along their trunks.  You call acorns coconuts and are getting better an not falling over rocks and roots.  When you know the hike is over, you sit in the closest field of sprouting flowers in protest and close your eyes, convinced that if you don't see me, then it's not time to go. 

You jump off the side of the pool now.  Without fear or trepidation.  The look on your face is worth millions of dollars.  And the thousands of early morning Saturday swim lessons/team practices that will no doubt anchor our weekends for years to come.  You are a fish.

You have finally really adjusted to school and stopped insisting every day that you've had a "bad day, mommy.  bad day."  This is especially good for me, since it broke my heart a little every time I heard you say that.  Now, you look forward to school and have started making friends. 

You tell Daddy and me that you love us all the time.  It is one of my absolute favorite things in the world.

We've started doing movie nights on Saturdays.  Your favorites are Peter Pan or anything Tinkerbell and anything with Pooh in it.  Popcorn is an essential part of the equation.  As is your parents on the couch cuddled under our green fleece blanket. 

You're learning more and more about frustration, patience, and waiting.  And as much as I love you, you still have a lot more to learn about all of these things.

Monday, May 6, 2013

Caden, March & April

Clearly, Mommy is not so great at keeping up with this new monthly obligation, so we're "improvising" here.  It's a good word.  Sometimes you just gotta hustle and flow.

You've grown so much, both physically and developmentally.  At your 6 month checkup in April (how did that happen so fast?), you measured 17 pounds 11 ounces and you hit all the developmental marks with flying colors.  Reach for objects?  Check.  Grasp items and pass between hands?  Double check.  Make eye contact, laugh, giggle?  Holy cow CHECK.

Speaking of laughing and giggling, it's your full-time job.  You have the most perfect, joyous smile.  It's remarkable and omnipresent.

You eat solids now, up to 3x day.  And you will, NO DOUBT, eat us out of house and home soon.  You love food.  Luuuurve.  Bibs generally are clean at the end of the meal. 

You have learned to roll and it's your life mission to stay on your tummy at all costs.  You take this mission seriously.  I admire your persistence.

You laughed for the first time.  It was your sister who made you laugh with a funny face.  I will always remember that moment.  I was standing in the kitchen, you were in your highchair, and your sister was playing with you after your meal.  It was lovely.  You clearly exist in this world for each other.

You are solid muscle.  Thick, strong legs and a wicked solid core that whips your legs around like it's nothing.  I suspect you'll be crawling soon.  And then likely move right onto sprinting.

You eat more than the average 6 month old.  A lot more.  Oy.

There are so many moments when I see your father in you.  Your smile.  How you fall asleep on your side with your hands curled up by your face.  Your insanely easy going attitude.  How bright and curious you are.  It's a wonderful thing to behold.

You still spit up.  Kind of all the time.  Our water bill has skyrocketed since your arrival with all the bib and blanket washing.

I've seen you spit your pacifier across the room.  It's a remarkable talent.

Now that you've figured out what those hands are for, you can't keep them off of stuff.  Constantly reaching for the closest object to play with, pull, tug, twist, flip, throw, and onto the next.  We've dug toys out of the basement that your sister barely glanced at, but can occupy you for a good 30 minutes.

Recently, you like to get up in the middle of the night.  Can't tell if it's teething (likely no, says the peds), diapers, or just plain boredom with sleep.  But there are days like today when I wonder if you're just torturing us for kicks and giggles.

On a related note, your dad and I drink a lot of coffee.

You have remained close friends with the three dozen or so pacifiers we have invested in and attempted to scatter throughout our lives.  A paci will generally solve almost any fussiness you have.  Generally.  With that said, you rarely fuss. 

You're now strong enough to almost sit up on your own.  You're getting close, but not quite there.  It's coming soon.  I think you'll like the new discovery.

You love fruit.  You hate green beans and peas.  HATE.

I miss you when you're away from my side.  I miss you during the day.  I miss you at night.  I tend to look at your pictures whenever I can.  It makes me feel better.

Monday, March 25, 2013

So far, so great

I've stuck with the new me plan. Dutifully counting my points and making adjustments along the way. Generally, feeling good! Been on for 3 weeks now and lost 5 pounds. Plus, hubs thinks I'm looking good...and that feels right.

My goals are to lose a good deal of weight in all -- 35 pounds. But I feel like this is possible if I take it slow and steady. Getting in exercise is hard with my schedule, but I'm always happy when I do. Signed up for a 5k in late April - honestly can't wait to feel like a runner again. Right now I'm only at 1.5 miles at a time, but again...slow and steady. I try for three workouts a week and at least one family physical activity a weekend - walks, pool time, etc. If the weather would ever just warm up, I'd get out with Caden and the running stroller!

Well, there's my quick and dirty dose of accountability! Onward and upward!

Friday, March 8, 2013

It has begun

I've committed. Jumped onto the weight watchers train. Counting those points. Keeping accountable.

So far? I'm pleased. Lost a little weight and hopped on the treadmill a bunch. Starting to feel more I'm focusing on building up runs and walking as much as possible. I splurged on a hiking pack to take the kids out with me. So far, the 1.5 mile standard rum is beginning to feel better. I'm beginning to feel stronger.

But even better? I'm beginning to feel more centered. When I manage to not over think it all, it works pretty darn well.

This is going to work. I can feel it in my bones.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

Caden, February

You are a ham, a card, a stinker.  Your sense of humor is already evident in your smile and the constant twinkle in your eyes. 

You sit up now and can keep your head aloft without help.  Thus, you're obsessed with sitting and standing, perpetually pushing up onto your feet with a huge smile. 

Your chunky quads are adorable.  So are your monkey toes.  I'm convinced you'll be able to pick up tiny things with your toes once you realize they're down there.

You sleep through the night now.  Not every night, but enough to give your mom and dad a break.  We thank you. 

You're an easy baby.  You rarely fret.  You only cry at stoplights in the car or when you're hungry. 

You love to eat.

You are now addicted to your pacifier.  The only conflict in this new found relationship is when you want to smile, which is often.  Then the darned thing pops out.  It's a terrible thing, you know.

You smile constantly. 

You have a happy soul.  It shines through your grin and sparkles in your eyes.  You will bring great joy to many people, I believe.

Right now, you're in a class full of girls.  Your teachers are so kind to you, but especially Miss Rena.  She adores you.  Thus, we adore her.

Our bottles together before bed are my favorite moments of the day.  We tuck into a cuddle and you hold my fingers with both hands.  I kiss your forehead and sing to you.  I cherish every night.

You make a lot of boogers.  You also spit up tons.  We do a lot of laundry around here.

This month, we thought you might be ready for solids.  So we propped you up in the highchair and started with the rice cereal.  You hollered like mad!  Apparently, you either HATE rice cereal or you're not really ready for solids.

You desperately want to roll over, but only to the right.  Never to the left.  I'm not even sure you know that you can go that way.

You look exactly like your dad.  It is actually a little creepy when you're together, the resemblance is so strong.

Your tiny little tuft of dark hair on the back of your head remains just that...tiny.  Like your sister, a full head of hair is clearly months away.

This month, you have waken up to the world.  You soak in as many details as possible all day long.  You're curious and joyous.  The warmth of your smile infects everyone around you, stopping loved ones and strangers in their tracks.  You have the power to shift the course of my day, wiping away piles of meaningless stress with that first flash of recognition when I pick you up from school.  You are my darling son.  I love you to pieces.