Wednesday, January 29, 2014

My Golden Boy.

To the man who makes life so easy.
...who loves like no one I know.
...who puts everyone before himself.
...who loves his children more than life.

I am so lucky to be married to this man.

Twenty-nine years ago, God broke the mold when he made you. For years I prayed for someone to share life's journey, not knowing His provision for me was already set - with you. What a gift you are. I'm so grateful for you each and everyday. Thank you, for your unconditional love and the true strength you provide for this family. You're my angel, and I love you so so so much.

Happy birthday, my love.

Tuesday, January 28, 2014

A sober birthday celebration.

This weekend was our first night without the kids. The occasion was for my husband's upcoming birthday [his golden one, to be precise]. Going into it you would think 10-months of sobriety would push one to order their first drink at dinner! Negative.

Instead it looked more like this.
To justify my drink of choice:
1) I love coffee. 
2) I was sitting by a window where it was below zero outside. And while bourbon serves a similar purpose of body warmth, note previous statement above.

With my beverage preference aside, my post today is merely to share with you a delicious restaurant here in town; Doc Crow's. It's known for it's large supply of whiskey & bourbon [again shocking why my "when in Rome" instinct didn't kick in] where the atmosphere is rustic modern, and historical. 

For apps, the whole table [minus yours truly] indulged in three rounds of oysters, while I stuck to my own little side of shrimp cocktail.
Then came the entrees.
As you can see, the portion sizes are nothing short of huge. Staying alongside my better judgement, I decided to go with the grilled salmon & rice [borrrring]. The last time we ate here, I ordered the beef brisket tacos, fried okra, and lima beans!! Sadly, my post-pregnancy provision does not approve of such indulgences yet, so I surrender to the fish. Although, it was quite tasty. On the contrary to my "light" meal, two of our friends ordered the famously ginormous "Bubba" burger; which is on a list of America's Over-The-Top Burgers.

We all know the best part about any dinner is usually the end... the dessert. To no surprise, however, I did not get any. So I suppose that puts this entry at a disappointing close. Muh-bad.

Nonetheless, the food was good, the company was great, and the night ended with us surrounded by a bunch of intoxicated adults riding wooden horses inside a church. I could totally elaborate on that, but the summary of it sounds so much more enticing, right?! Ok ok, so it was a Home Builder's function where we went to support a friend who helped sponsor the event, where they placed bets on people riding wooden horses on wheels. And yes, in a church. Quite the show.

Friday, January 24, 2014

Oh, hi. Remember me?

1. A person living in solitude...

Yes. That is currently the reality of my life. Not that I'm complaining. It's totally excusable. I'm just referencing the fact that I have been cooped up in this house for the last month. I literally find myself gasping for air when I let the dog out to pee. It's that extreme. 

Ok, so I'm a little dramatic. But lets face it... I am a new mother of two, whose 4yr old continually battles the sniffles, our newborn recently battled through RSV, while the husband and I went through our own dose of antibiotics for sinus infections... all in the last 4 weeks. Winter sure has a sense of humor. 

Moving on...

Since being 4 weeks postpartum, I have found myself already back to my pre-pregnancy weight. WOOHOO!!! I know the lack of sleep and illnesses may seem to have been the root of the weight loss, but quite the contrary. With the motivation of my husband's nutritional comeback [we both got a little off track through the pregnancy; again excusable], I have managed to maintain a well balance diet.

I grew up an athlete from grade school through high school. So naturally, I was a decently healthy human being. But it wasn't until the last 5 years that I truly became a health nut; obsessed with knowledge of the good/bad fats or the difference between simple/complex carbs. But of course, while pregnant, food deprivation is not an option so you'll find yourself straying off course a bit. Although, I did manage to stay in the gym as long as possible.

via Instagram plugin 

I made it to about 32 weeks, then I was done. My body wasn't able to do anything without force, and my motivation to do it was lacking. So, I guess you can say I took a 6 week break - baby B was born at 38 weeks. 

NOW! I'm ready to get back at it. Immediately [aka after the post baby junk food indulgence at the hospital] I began eating clean again, with moderate exercises here or there. I haven't pushed myself too much, because I want to make sure I'm back to normal 100%  at my 6 week mark. That way I can jump back into my old routines!!!! Yes, I'm that anxious.

Without dragging this on anymore than I have been, I want to share with you one of my new favorite snacks. It's been a great way to satisfy that sweet tooth. Although my sweet tooth has subsided tremendously, I still get a small craving. With that said, here is my substitute!

Frozen Yogurt Bites
Pastry bag or Ziploc baggie
Nonstick tray

Pour yogurt into the bag. If using a Ziploc, cut a tiny hole in the bottom corner [if the hole is too big, the yogurt will spill out]. Gently squeeze the yogurt onto tray in small bite size amounts. The size preference is up to you. Quickly place them in the freezer for about an hour. That's it!
Dispose of any excess yogurt...
And voila!
There you have it. A nice, healthy snack!

Again, I'm so anxious to get this ball rolling. It'd be totally cliché to say "new year, new me", but what the heck. I was in the best shape of my life back in 2011, and I'm ready to get back there again. It's a challenge I'm more than willing to accept! So in the next months, expect a lot of new recipes and I may even share some progress shots of my body's transformation. Hope you'll be along for the journey!!!!

Saturday, January 4, 2014

Home Is Where The Heart Is

Well we have managed to survive our first week at home! If you read the end of my last post, you'd understand what I mean by survive. 

This past week has reiterated the importance of managing time, but most importantly dividing that time between two kids and a husband. 

Another thing I learned is that a mother's love has no limits when it comes to her family. Although at times my heart seems like it could burst! I have been overwhelmed with emotions, both good and bittersweet. 

My daughter has been an only child for four years, and now she has to share her time with another; as do we now as parents of two. Our son is an incredible gift to our family, but we have done our best to not overlook Audriana's needs among the changes. I have to credit our extended families as well, spending extra time with Audriana and/or showering her with "big sister" gifts. She certainly hasn't felt like she's lost her spotlight; not that it's even remotely possible with that girl. 

These next years ahead of us are going to be quite the adventure. I'm anxious for the milestones of our new son, and to witness the relationship between him and Audriana. I grew up an only child, so the friendships and bonds between siblings have always fascinated me. I'm blessed to at least enjoy those moments through my own children now.   

Lastly, I have to acknowledge my inability to do any of this without my dear husband. With a few things left to finish in the nursery, the chaos approached us quickly when our son decided he wanted to get here in the middle of the night - TWO WEEKS EARLY. Yet, Chris managed to get everything together while I rested at the hospital and take care of all things I'd be unable to do once we were back home. Even with a hectic [end of the year] work week, Chris stayed around the house to make sure we were all taken care of. Whether it was fixing us breakfast, dinner, or simply waking up with me at night just to let me know he was there if I needed him... [tears commencing] ...I feel so blessed to have him as my husband. Words couldn't express just how incredible he is.

God continues to shower us with so much love, and there is no where else I'd rather be than in this moment.

Wednesday, January 1, 2014

The Best of 2013... into the New Year!

To accumulate all of the memories 2013 brought us, I decided to share them in photos.

Here are a few highlights!

1. The BEST vacation 2. Audriana's first haircut 3. Derby [faaaamous] 4. My Best Friend's Wedding
1. First day of Preschool 2. My first volleyball team 3. Fall festivals 4. First Halloween at the zoo
1. Family tailgates 2. New York babymoon 3. First gymnastics class 4. Disneyworld!
On November 24th, I was baptized...
1. First visit with Santa 2. A priceless expression on Christmas morning... my favorite.
Lastly, we ended the year the best way we could have thought possible. Breezing through all the holidays and holiday birthdays, our baby boy landed his own special day on December 28th. Audriana was so excited to meet her baby brother, and we were on cloud nine with the completion of our family.
This passed year has been filled with so many blessings.

Although I could relive each memory over again in a heartbeat, I'm more than ecstatic to begin our newest journey this coming year.

2013, you were good to us...