Oh Hi. yeah. We’re still here.

Timothy Michael_3 yearsSo, I’m perusing through my WordPress accounts and I realized..whoa.  I totally forgot about this blog! How sad is that!?  Once my Maternity leave was over and I was back “at it”, I totally forgot about all the joy that I had already put into this blog.

A few things to note to catch up now that Timothy is 3 1/2:

  1. Timothy’s Nursery looks more like a demilitarized zone filled with Thomas the Train, Books and kitchen utensils he has secretly stolen from the jar on the counter.
  2. The Crib has been replaced with a big boy bed with totally mismatched sheets, pillows and stuffed animals per laundry availability.
  3. Anything within 3.5ft of the floor has since been removed or taken hostage by small hands.
  4. We now keep treats in the bathroom with a bright blue Thomas the Train Potty seat on the Toilet that will challenge even the best adults bladder control in the removal process.
  5. Dance parties happen nightly to everything from the Itsy Bitsy Spider to the latest jam on Pandora.
  6. Silence is no longer golden, it’s fueled by curiosity and shenanigans. Thanks to a bald wizard and his magic eraser, Silence can be manageable.
  7. That amazing “Baby Head” smell has been replaced with Baby Magic, Dirt and Maple Syrup.
  8. I say the words “poop”, “potty”, “oh no!”, “Hooray!” and “I Don’t Think So, Mr.” more than most of the words in the English language.
  9. Parent life has made me feel every emotion include a new category of emotion known as “over-protective”.
  10. Netflix Streaming has saved my sanity both while shopping at times and before bed when I can watch something with a rating higher than G.
  11. Reading with my child is just as much fun, if not more fun for Charlie and I, as it is for Timothy.
  12. My mother was right…at least a time or two.
  13. I fall in love with him a little more; every. single. day.
  14. I’m highly competitive with the “other parents” in my life.  Especially when it comes to “treats for the class”
  15. One isn’t enough.  We want another.

The First Year and an Emotional Revelation

Since returning to work after my maternity leave, I really haven’t spent any time on my blog.  I guess I can expect to take up writing on a regular basis again when it comes time for baby number two.  At this point, I’m struggling to really find my place. 

I suffered a terrible bout of Post-partum Anxiety upon returning to work and almost lost my job.  I said some things and felt some things that can’t be taken back and aren’t easily overcome.  I’m not the person who can just say, “well I was sick” and move on.  Those things bother me everyday.  It was in that time that I also became aware of those in my life that understood who I really was and helped to raise me up again. 

This past year hasn’t been all downs, there have been so many ups and watching Timothy grow is something I feel so very blessed to be a part of.  The first year goes by so fast.  It feels like it was just yesterday we were in the car on our way home from the hospital with our amazing baby boy, now he’s running around, laughing, learning and is a complete joy.

Becoming a mother, has really opened up my eyes to what’s really important in life.  It has allowed me to find stores of patience I never knew I had.  Motherhood has given me a new purpose.  The challenge is how to serve that purpose and still maintain the person you’ve always been.  It has been a struggle at times, exhausting for some of them and energizing and inspiring for others.

I feel like life is a constant state of cycles.  Sometimes we are up and sometimes we are down.  It’s not about getting through life on the straight & narrow and scoring perfect scores on life’s tests.  I’m not just living for me anymore, there are big, curious blue eyes that watch everything I do with wonderment and curiosity, just waiting to learn more.  In the end, it’s about learning from our falls, picking ourselves up, dusting off and pressing on because we’re living for more than just ourselves, we’re setting the examples for our children and the generation to come.

Superbowl Sunday…A Clean Eating Perspective

This Sunday will be one of the Fattiest, Saltiest and downright fullest days of the year. Super Bowl Sunday is like the Fat Tuesday of Football. It’s the day that we all say it’s OK to throw caution to the wind and eat our weight in Chicken Wings, Potato Skins, Barbeque, Pizza and Desserts. Then we all wash it down with high sugar sodas or a few frosty brewskis. I’m not even going to pretend that it all doesn’t taste amazing, but I think we all should ask ourselves something:

Do I really need to eat like this to enjoy the game?

This is where most people will look at me like the guy who popped every balloon at the 1-year-olds birthday party. I’m not trying to be a party pooper, but more a realist about what we are really doing this weekend. If we don’t fill the crockpots with lil’ smokies and queso will the game still go on? The sad reality is YES. Yes, the game will go on. Our healthy lifestyle change, however, not so much.
We, Americans in particular, have become the ‘bigger is better’ & ‘We Need More’ society. We see it in product portion sizes already. I would bet that most of America doesn’t realize that a serving of beverage is actually 1 cup (8oz). We are so used to 20oz – 30oz beverages that are bottomless. Add that into the Triple Burgers, Triple Meat Pies and Double Chocolate anythings, and we can start to see the problem.
Why do we tell ourselves that activities are not enjoyable unless we have a bag of chips, a jar of processed cheese and a can of high-fructose corn syrup at the ready?
There are plenty of healthy alternatives to making “football food” and they can help deter our health from hitchhiking its way south. But even at this point, how MUCH of that healthier option are we actually eating?
We can make the healthiest choices in the world, but when we graze on them for 4 hours, we are still doing our system damage. As a Rejuv Biggest Loser Challenge Competitor, we’ve been trained for the last 3 weeks to teach our bodies a new way of surviving. Smaller meals every 3-4 hours with no processed and artificial ingredients are the daily routine.
Why can’t we keep Super Bowl Sunday like any normal day, just with a different variety of foods? Do we have to eat all game long? Why not just make an actual full dinner for the first half of the game and shoot for a healthier protein rich appetizer for halftime? If this seems like an impossible scenario, why are you eating during the game at all? The fate of the football game does not reside on the status of our crockpots and coolers. The game will go on no matter what we do at home. However, the scale and our progress towards a healthier self will suffer if we overdo it. Some people might say, “It’s just one night”, but I know for myself, there is really never a true “just one night”. When we are so new to this new lifestyle change, we NEED to hit the end of our comfort zone. We need to be uncomfortable at times. These small food battles will help lead to much greater things. You’re not missing out on anything by not eating like an animal at your Super Bowl party. But eating “just because it’s the Super Bowl” may leave you missing out on your greatest potential and even leave you with an emotional hangover when the scale calls on Monday.