Month: October 2014

Last-Minute Fall Goals

Happy Halloween! Hope you guys have a fun night planned! I think Josh and I might take Lochlyn trick-or-treating to a few friends houses to show her off. I hope she is feeling better so we can go. After Lochlyn goes to bed I am hoping for a movie night. Amanda inspired me to watch The Nightmare Before Christmas!

baby with a cold

My sick little girl, all bundled up

Today I want to talk about goals. Goals are a bit of a tough subject for me. I am very much a type A personality, and a perfectionist. I don’t like to set goals that I could potentially fail at. Usually, if I don’t follow-through with a goal perfectly, I give it up altogether and forget about it.

I think that it is human nature to always want to be improving. This can be a good and a bad thing. I don’t want to constantly be striving to be something else, and to not enjoy where I am at in life at the moment. At the same time, there are areas that I want to work on in order to improve my life, and the lives of those around me.

I have seen other bloggers post monthly goals and I think it is a good way to stay accountable. I can’t change my mind about these goals once I have posted them on the Internet, can I? I plan on making goals that will challenge me, which I accept means that I won’t always be perfect at trying to follow them. I usually try to live a pretty intuitive life, and don’t love the idea of setting a bunch of “rules” to control me. These goals are more like guidelines. I don’t want them to be set in stone 100% of the time, but they are things I think that will make my life better.

I feel like I could make a super long list of what I want to accomplish in this next season, but I am choosing to keep it short and sweet. It will be easier to accomplish my goals if I narrow them down to a few that are most important to me right now and that I really want to work on. Also, I was going to make these goals for the month of November, but I have decided to just plan on them being short term goals, and I will review at them in a few weeks and see how I am doing.

 

fall scarf selfie

So, here they are. My list of goals for the fall:

1. Start reading my Bible daily

I haven’t been consistent in reading my Bible for a couple of months and I miss it a lot. Reading it really helps me stay grounded in my relationship with God and recognize when I need a mindset shift. It helps me to stay positive and it is a great way to relax at the end of the day. I plan to read at the end of the day before bed. I usually spend this time checking the Internet on my phone, which I already do about a million times a day anyways.

2. Set time aside weekly to spend together as a family

I always have the best intentions to spend some quality time together as a family on the weekend, but life usually gets the better of me. I end up leaving groceries, food prep, cleaning, or whatever until the weekend, and then I don’t have the time to spend it with the people that matter most to me. Before we had Lochlyn, Josh and I always made Sunday our “family day”. We wouldn’t make plans with friends during the day, or do work around the house. This was our designated day to spend together. I want to keep this tradition, even if we only get to spend an hour or two together, rather than the whole day.

I am going to start doing groceries on Fridays or Saturdays, and make an effort to keep Sundays open. I also will start planning things we can do together as a family, like go for walks, go swimming, or even just go out for a coffee date. This Sunday we are going to the Christmas Market in town! So excited! (The Christmas Market is like a farmer’s market, but with Christmas stuff!!)

family pose in brandon

3. Get back into running

I mentioned in this post that I am thinking about running a 10K in the spring next year. I am starting to consider running a half marathon after the 10K too, we will see. I haven’t done very much running since before I got pregnant, and I want to get back into it. I plan on starting to run three times a week. I want to build up my endurance, and see if I enjoy it enough to train for a half marathon. I actually started adding running into my workouts this week (before Lochlyn got sick!) and I am loving it!

4. Unplug from technology

On Wednesday I found myself googling random things on my phone while Lochlyn and I were playing together … not cool. I was more interested in what I could look up on the Internet than in my baby girl. This is okay once in awhile, but I had spent most of the afternoon on the computer already during her naps, and I was looking up things that I didn’t even care that much about. I find myself on my phone countless times during the day, including when I am eating, or even while I am brushing my teeth. This is craziness. How can I expect my little one to not be technology crazy when she sees me constantly on the Internet?

My goal is to set technology aside while I am spending time with other people. This could be my husband, my baby, other friends and family, or even strangers. I think we can use our phones in particular as a way to avoid conversation with someone we don’t know. For example, I see so many people at the gym that are always glued to their phones between sets – what are they looking at anyways? I think that it is a way to avoid contact with others around you. So, for now, the internet on my phone is for morning and evening nursing sessions (Lochlyn takes 30-40 minutes to eat, so I use this time to catch up on other blogs and social media). The rest of my day is for my family, friends, and for myself!

5. Pay more attention to my body’s hunger and fullness cues

I have mentioned Intuitive Eating on the blog a few times. I am currently reading this book and am really liking it.

intuitive eating book

I have been paying a lot of attention to how I eat and why, and I am noticing that I am not very good at feeding my body when it is hungry, and at stopping when I am full. I think this is because I have spent so many years dieting, and completely ignoring what my body wants and needs. This month I want to be more conscious of how my body is feeling before I eat, and on feeding it when I am hungry, and stopping when I am satisfied.

I thought about keeping a food journal to record this, but to be honest, I suck at food journals. This goes back to my perfectionist, type A personality, combined with being a busy, on-the-go mom. Sometimes I just don’t have time to write in a journal. When I don’t write in the journal, my perfectionism kicks in, says I have failed, and it all goes out the window. Rather than keeping a journal, I am just going to take a moment before eating to pay attention to what my body is feeling. I also plan to take breaks while eating to check in and see whether or not I am full yet.

My goal of unplugging more from technology should help me with this. It will be easier to pay attention to how my body is feeling when I am not distracted by my phone!

Honorable mentions

I had to include this section because I am ridiculous and could probably make 20 goals if I allowed myself. These are more task-oriented things that I would really like to get done this month. Since I only allowed myself five goals, if these don’t get done, that is okay too!

– Get the majority of my Christmas shopping done (this is a big stretch – I am a late Christmas shopper, and now I have a baby!)

-Figure out what I am going to do for an income in January when my maternity leave payments are done (Talk to my old employers to see if there is the option to work there part time while Josh isn’t working)

-Get our old car towed from the back yard (Our Ford Escort has been sitting in our yard for over a year now, it needs too much work to sell it, but I want to get it towed before winter)

old ford escort

-Set up an RESP account for Lochlyn (this has been a goal for over 6 months now!)

I plan to write a follow-up post on these goals at the end of fall, or around the beginning of December. I guess fall is already almost over here, these goals are a little late coming, but better now than never!

 

What is one of your major goals for this next season? 

Food journaling? Am I the only one that can’t handle it?

 

Thinking out Loud: Christmas Ideas, Baby Clothes, and a Cold

I really enjoyed writing last week’s post, so I thought it would be fun to do another round of:

thursdays are for thinking out loud

Thank you Amanda for hosting this fun link-up!

 

1. Maybe it is the snow that we received on the weekend, but I have been thinking about Christmas like crazy this week. I guess it is time to start shopping. I hate being a last minute shopper but I always find myself picking up things the final week before Christmas. This year we are on a tighter budget than normal since my EI payments (for maternity leave) will be ending in January. I also think it is going to be a lot harder to go shopping with Lochlyn. She is always eating and napping so it is hard to accomplish much! I have lots of gift ideas for Josh (he is pretty easy to buy for!) but I need some ideas for our parents – help!

My mother-in-law loves gardening, the spa, casual bike rides, and chick flicks. (Wow, sounds like I am writing an online dating ad or something!) My father-in-law likes reading, golfing, working out, and watching hockey. Any ideas? I would love to get them a joint gift if possible! Also, don’t worry, they don’t read the blog.

My parents do read the blog from time-to-time. They are moving into a new house at the beginning of December. I have a couple ideas for them already, but if you have any brilliant parent gift ideas I am all ears!

My favorite part about opening gifts on Christmas morning is the stockings. My family is a little ridiculous and we each take turns opening one item at a time. We usually have a lot of stocking gifts, so this can take over an hour, with only four of us! Now that we have a little one, it is about to get crazy! This can also get pretty pricey. Not sure what we are going to do with stockings this year, we shall see. Any inexpensive, but still awesome stocking gift ideas?

 

2. I think today was the first day that I have eaten a real lunch this week. I need to fix this problem! I have been heading to the gym around 1:30, since this works best with Lochlyn’s schedule, and I just haven’t got around to eating a real meal before we go. What I have been eating instead is a ton of these granola bars. This is probably my most favorite granola bar recipe I have found. I have made them many, many times. They are really sweet and chewy, and super easy to make. Actually I think they are all gone now. I guess I can’t eat them for lunch anymore.

turkey sandwich

 

3. Does anyone else love folding their little one’s laundry? It is so much more fun than folding adult laundry. Everything is so cute and small. Also it gets outgrown so fast that it always seems new. You end up putting it away before you get tired of it.

folding laundry

Speaking of putting baby clothes away, on Tuesday I packed up a whole bunch of Lochlyn’s old clothes that don’t fit her anymore. Then I cried … a lot. It was really sad. I can’t believe my little baby has grown so much. I just love this time with her and sometimes I never want it to end. She is just so perfect right now, I wish I could slow time down so I would have more of it to enjoy with her!

 

4. My baby girl is sick. She caught the cold that I had at the beginning of the week. Lochlyn is handling it really well, but she is all stuffed up and needing extra sleep. I guess it gives me a bit of a break since she is napping a lot. Yesterday we didn’t make it to the gym since I didn’t want to spread her germs, and I wanted to give her lots of extra love. We had a lazy pyjama/sweatpant no make-up day. Sometimes these are just necessary.

no make-up selfie

I could hear her coughing and sneezing all night last night through the baby monitor. She is still sleeping this morning, but I hope she wakes up feeling better. Poor little girl.

 

5. I know it isn’t Halloween yet, but Lochlyn went to a Halloween party at our mom and baby group on Tuesday, and I wanted to share a picture of her all dressed up. The cutest little kitten:

kitten costume

Oh and you too Eeyore!

eeyore sleeping

 

Moms, am I the only one that likes folding little laundry? I’m not completely crazy am I?

Does anyone have any gift ideas for my in-laws? What about stocking stuffers for my parents and husband? (We aren’t doing stockings with my in-laws this year).

 

Part 4: Letting Go

This is the fourth post in the series telling you about my past. Please check out: Part 1: Where it all Started; Part 2: Exercising Excessively; and Part 3: Not Getting Your Period is Normal?

Yesterday, I left off with telling you that I had reached my breaking point. Josh and I were meeting with the doctor at the fertility clinic. He worked out of Edmonton, which is about an hour and a half drive for us, so we our appointment through video conferencing this time (kind of like Skype). The doctor was encouraging us to consider in-vitro fertilization to get pregnant. As I mentioned in my last post he warned us that it could take 2 years for my body to heal naturally so that I could conceive. In-vitro was not something that we were willing to consider. We really felt that if we were supposed to have kids, we would conceive naturally. I have nothing against in-vitro, and we may have considered this as an option down the road, but at the time it wasn’t for us.

So … my breaking point. We only had a five minute drive home from that appointment. That was all it took. I couldn’t handle it anymore. I had been doing everything that I could to try to balance getting my periods back so I could get pregnant, with staying fit and thin. I was failing at everything. I gave up. I gave it all up. All of these things that I wanted so bad, that had become idols to me. These things that I was putting first in my life, and that I gained my identity from.

Maybe you are spiritual, and maybe you are not, but it is my experience that sometimes we can’t make it on our own (sounds like a Coldplay song!). I needed God big time right about now. I had been trying to control my life and everything in it myself, and it wasn’t working, I was making such a big mess of it. I was trying to control my body to get its’ periods back. I was trying to stay active and fit, but I was slowly working out less and less trying to get pregnant. I wanted to be thin, but I couldn’t control the binge eating. I had to give up the control to God and trust Him to do what was right with my life.

As hard as it was and as much as it hurt, I gave up and gave in. On that five minute drive home, I told God He could have me, my life, and all the problems I was facing. I would give up exercising if that was what it took. I couldn’t commit for two years just yet, I wasn’t ready for that. I was ready to commit for six months. For those six months I would trust God to take control of my life. I wouldn’t worry about getting pregnant. I wouldn’t work out. I would work on listening to my body and getting back to being healthy. I would eat what I wanted to when I wanted to (I am still working on this one!). After the six months passed I would reevaluate and go from there. I could’t imagine not being active for more than six months. I decided to take life one day at a time.

That first week of not working out was hard, but the second week got easier. I got used to my new normal pretty fast. I didn’t obsess as much about getting pregnant, which was pretty huge. I had stopped taking the Estrase and Prometrium pills that doctor had given me to force me to have a (fake) period. I was learning to relax and just be in the moment. Then, something amazing happened. At the end of that first month of not exercising at all, I got my period naturally.

I couldn’t believe it! It seemed too good to be true! I didn’t want to get my hopes up that I would start cycling naturally, so I put them back in God, and trusted he would do what was best with my life.

Not too long after I got my period, we had another video conference scheduled with the fertility doctor. This appointment was booked to review Josh’s test results and discuss our options for in-vitro fertilization. Josh’s test results came back showing some problems. The doctor told us that it would be very difficult, or even impossible for him to father a child naturally. In-vitro fertilization would be our best option.

I was crushed all over again. Just when things were starting to look up, we were delivered this horrible news. Josh was so positive through the whole thing. He reminded me to trust God. One scripture that I held onto during this time, that I think I have mentioned on the blog before is: “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart” -Psalm 37:4. My heart’s greatest desire at this time was to be a mother. I was trusting that God gave me this desire and that he would fulfill it in His timing.

After I got my first period, I had started taking my basal body temperature every morning and charting it. I was doing this to see if I could tell if my body was ovulating or not, based on the change in temperatures. It was my first month of charting and I didn’t know for sure, but it looked like I was ovulating on the chart. Still, over a month had passed and I didn’t get my period again. I think it had been about six weeks since the last one, and I was starting to wonder if maybe I was pregnant. I didn’t get too excited. I had taken so many pregnancy tests that turned out negative. I didn’t have it in me to take another one and hear bad news.

One morning, Josh and I were fighting about something. I can’t even remember what it was about. I was already in such a bad mood, I figured I might as well try taking a pregnancy test since my day could hardly get any worse. I peed on the stick, set it on the counter, and almost forgot about it. When I thought of it, I went back to check on the results, and this  happened:

positive pregnancy test

 

I was pregnant – naturally! The first month after getting my period back. The second month of no exercising! When I put my trust in God He came through for me, even when doctors told us that it wouldn’t happen. I love that during our last meeting with the doctor, while he was telling us we wouldn’t conceive naturally, we were already pregnant!

I caught Josh just as he was leaving the house for work in the morning. We were still fighting and he didn’t really want to have much to do with me at the moment. I told him my news and we just hugged each other and cried (or at least I did!). We were going to have a little miracle baby!

 

embrace after wedding

 

 

Thanks for reading! I plan on writing a follow-up to this post, talking about where I am now in relation to eating habits and exercise. I also plan to discuss my experience with Hypothalamic Amenorrhea in more depth, including what I did to get my period back!

 

 

My Story: Not Getting Your Period is Normal?

This is the next post in my super long series about my past. Please check out Part I: Where it all Started, and Part II: Exercising Excessively, before you read this.

Please note that I do talk about eating disorders, dieting and other disordered eating habits, as well as excessive exercise in this post. If this is something that may be triggering for you, please refrain from reading. Thanks!

The last time that I got my period was January 26, 2010. I think that date will be stuck in my head for a long time. This was when I decided to stop taking birth control pills to see if it would help with my depression. It did help, a lot, and I decided not to go back on them. When February came and went and I didn’t get my period, I didn’t think much of it at the time. Well, actually I thought it was awesome. When March passed, I thought I was pregnant. I was so excited. We were planning on having kids eventually and this little scare made me realize I was getting close to being ready. I took countless pregnancy tests, all showing up negative. Still no period.

I ended up going to my doctor, who told me that I probably wasn’t getting my period because I was thin. She told me that women that don’t have a lot of body fat have a hard time regulating their periods, and not to worry about it until I wanted to get pregnant. She thought that I could try gaining some weight to see if that would help if I really wanted to. I didn’t want to gain weight and my husband and I were planning to wait a couple more years to have kids, so I didn’t think much of it.

I told myself that everything was okay, but as months and months passed, I started to feel like something was wrong. I decided to quit doing intense exercise videos at home (after a short but intense couple months of doing Insanity Asylum). I also went to the gym and met with a personal trainer. She took my body composition and came up wiwth a pretty intense workout program for me at the gym that I never actually followed. She wasn’t concerned about my low body fat percentage – afterall that was the goal of most her her clients right?

I was starting to feel pretty confused. I couldn’t shake the gut feeling that something was wrong, but according to my doctor and this personal trainer, not getting your period is not a big deal. Deep down I knew it was from exercising so much and not eating enough, but I wasn’t ready to change my lifestyle yet. Especially if the professionals I spoke with told me that it wasn’t something I needed to change.

Baby fever was slowly starting to set in, even though my husband and I weren’t really talking babies yet. My close call made me realize I wanted to be a mom. I went to a different doctor to get a second opinion. He told me I was “living the dream” and that if I really wanted my period, I should go back on birth control. I went back on the pill for one month and realized that this wasn’t what I wanted and wasn’t solving my problem. I stopped taking the pill and got a referral to a gynecologist. By this time I had had countless blood tests and everything was appearing within normal range. The gynecologist reordered even more blood tests. One time in the clinic they ended up withdrawing 11 vials of blood. I hate needles, I think I almost had a panic attack! The gynecologist also had me do a progesterone test. When this didn’t bring on my period, he felt safe telling me that I probably had hypothalamic ammenorhea and that I should gain a few pounds.

I don’t think that anyone who has suffered from an eating disorder, or who has struggled with dieting, should be told to gain a few pounds without any direction. I was suddenly caught between a rock and a hard place . All my life I had been eating to be skinny. I didn’t want to gain a few pounds, but I wanted to get my period back. The next year was a whirlwind of me eating all the things to try to gain a few pounds and then feeling guilty for eating everything in sight because i still wanted to be skinny and had a diet mentality. It was so hard.

I spend the year dieting, and binge eating. Josh would go out in the evening and I would be left at home. I would tell myself I could eat a piece of toast with honey because I needed to gain weight and it would be delicious. then I would eat about 4 more pieces and proceed to eat everything I could find in my kitchen. Then I would feel guilty and diet for the rest of the week and then start the process all over again. I would binge eat until I literally couldn’t fit anything else in my stomach. I felt sick, my stomach was so sore, I had so much shame. It was awful.

I had planned to only gain about 5 pounds, but now I was gaining more than i wanted to. To help fight the weight gain, I started working out even harder. Then, when I worked out harder, I told myself I needed to eat more, and the viscious cycle continued. This was such a hard time in my life. I was afraid to be alone because I knew that I would binge eat. My body was so used to starving that when i gave it the chance to eat, it wouldn’t stop until i was in so much pain emotionally and physically. The eating was completely uncontrollable and I was becoming miserable.

One of the best things that I ever did was come clean to Josh. It was so embarassing. He had always thought I was such a healthy eater. I told him the truth about my binge eating, and about my dieting past. He was shocked and had no idea. It felt so good, and such a load was lifted off my shoulders. Josh tried to keep me accountable, but more than that, he was there through it. He would tell me it was ok when I binged again. He loved me no matter what I did and he prayed for me to get better. He would wait until late to go out with friends, and tuck me in bed before he left. Usually this really helped, often I was too tired to get up and binge eat after he was gone.

Telling Josh was a step in the right direction, but it didn’t make my problem go away. I would still find myself dieting, and then bingeing regularly. By this time I had gained a lot of weight and still hadn’t gotten my period.

In 2013, 3 years since I got my last period, my doctor ended up referring me to a fertility clinic. After doing all the blood tests all over again, I took an estrogen test to bring on my period. The fertiltiy clinic doctor confirmed the diagnosis of hypothalamic amneorrhea, but this time he offered the further explanation of it being exercise-induced. The doctor thought that the best thing I could do to get my periods back natrually would be to sit on the couch with a remote control in my hand and do absolutely nothing. He said that the most exercise he wanted to see me do would be to go on slow, romantic walks with my husband.

This may not sound so bad to you, but tell this to someone whose whole identity is built on exercise and being active. It tore me apart. If I couldn’t exercise who was I? I couldn’t go backpacking and on long hikes with Josh anymore (this was our favorite thing to do together!) I couldn’t work out, I couldn’t even go ice skating. My doctor told me that if I wanted to start ovulating naturally, to expect the proess to take up to 2 years. Two years? Was I willing to let go of all forms of exercise for that long? I wanted a baby so bad. I wanted to stop binge eating so bad. This literally was my breaking point. I needed to let go of my identity in being active and my goal of being thin. I had to set it aside for something greater; being a mother.

Please stay tuned for the next part in this series!

A Shopping, Napping, and Eating Weekend

It is Monday! This weekend just flew by. I am always a little sad when the weekend is over because it means that Josh has to go back to work. I really miss all the extra help during the weekend, oh and I miss spending extra time with him too!

My parents came up for part of the weekend from Calgary. They got to our place on Friday night. I made Sweet Potato and Quinoa Turkey Chilli for dinner. It was good, but I left out the onions and beans from the recipe and it seemed like it was missing some texture. Josh doesn’t like beans or onions, but I am thinking next time I could replace them with corn, or another vegetable.

 

cat in ikea bag

 Eeyore was all over the Ikea bag that my parents brought with them

After Lochlyn went to bed, we hung out and visited for awhile and went to sleep ourselves. Speaking of Lochlyn sleeping, I have some good news! Lochlyn fell asleep by herself at nap time four times this weekend! This is a BIG first for us. She fell asleep in her car seat with the vacuum going without being carried around. Yay! It is a very good start. A big bonus is she slept for over an hour 3 out of the 4 times. Progress! My plan is to slowly progress to have her sleeping in her crib without needing the vacuum to sleep, but for now I will take what I can get!

 

baby sleeping by herself in car seat

 

On Saturday morning Lochlyn slept in really late – until almost 10:00. When she woke up I fed her and then my Mom and I headed into Red Deer to go shopping. This shopping trip was my late birthday present. I think it was more like an intervention that Josh and my Mom planned to get me out of wearing boxy pregnancy clothes. I didn’t realize that this was what I  was wearing until they confronted me, but they are right. I love the loose fitting style of baggy shirts worn with leggings or skinny jeans. Unfortunately, this style just doesn’t look good on me. I am a curvy girl (meaning I have a bum, bigger legs, and breastfeeding boobs!) and boxy styles just hit me at all my biggest places and make me look like a tent. So, my Mom steered me away from the boxy look, to loose-ish fitting and relaxed. I haven’t ventured into tighter fitting yet, but this is a step in the right direction (thank you mom!).

I wanted to take a picture of what I got so I could show you guys, but I majorly failed on the picture front this weekend – I am still trying to get this! I am taking Amanda’s advice this week and setting reminders on my phone to take pictures until I get into the habit. My mom bought me four outfits, and a new fall jacket and scarf. I am really blessed!

My Dad and Josh watched Lochlyn until the late afternoon, when I came home to feed her. It was really nice to be able to go shopping and have time with just the girls without having to constantly stop to feed nurse Lochlyn, change her, put her down for a nap, or whatever.

 

lochlyn on dad's shoulders

 

On Saturday evening my Mom bought us thai food for dinner. Again, I apologize for the lack of pictures, but we had coconut curry. My favorite!

 

grandma and lochlyn ipadunnamed-58

Seems like the pictures I did manage to take ended up being a big blur – oops!

 

After my parents left I was tired and pretty ready for bed. I have been denying the fact that I haven’t been feeling good all week and I think I was finally ready to admit it. I have a bit of a cold, nothing too crazy, just annoying. I am pretty tired and stuffed up. I think Lochlyn is fighting the same thing because her nose has been pretty plugged up lately too.

 

lochlyn on nursing pillow

 

On Sunday all I wanted to do was be lazy and sleep. I did venture out to go for lunch with some friends for a couple hours, and then came back home to be lazy again.

Being lazy involved doing some laundry, making granola bars, and cleaning out out my fridge. I can’t do nothing for too long! Then I went to bed early and slept in late. Hopefully the extra sleep will help me to feel better soon!

 

What was the best thing that happened to you this weekend?

Can you pull of the “boxy” clothing look? If you can I am jealous!

 

Meal Plan for October 26th

Good morning/afternoon/whatever! This meal plan is coming at yah a little later than usual. We have had one busy and fun weekend around here so far. I will fill you in on the details tomorrow!

I don’t have a lot of things planned for the coming week so I am hoping to make a few new-to-me recipes. I mentioned on Thursday that I just started using Pinterest, and I planned meals this week using it – it was awesome! I don’t know why I didn’t start pinning stuff sooner. Maybe I knew i would spend way too much time doing it?! Anyways, I think I am most looking forward to the tortellini soup, it sounds so easy, warm and delicious! Here is the plan:

tomato basil soup with cheese tortellini
Source

 

Dinner Ideas

Tomato Basil Soup with Cheese Tortellini

Maple Baked Salmon, brown rice, broccoli

Asian Peanut Noodles with Chicken

Tacos/taco salad

 

Lochlyn’s New Foods

Tuesday: Broccoli

Friday: Asparagus

(Lochlyn tried plain greek yogurt on Saturday and loved it!)

baby trying new food

 

Food Prep

  • Make more baby cereal
  • Cook and mash broccoli and asparagus for Lochlyn
  • Cut up veggies for lunches and snacks
  • I still haven’t made these granola bars yet – want to make them this week – we shall see!
5 minute no bake peanut butter granola bars
Source

 

And that is all I got! Hope you have a great Sunday. On the agenda for today is watching our church service on webcast while Lochlyn naps, going out for lunch with a friend, and spending the evening with some other friends of ours!

 

What is your favorite kind of soup?

Any exciting meal ideas for next week? 

 

Friday Fitness Talk

It’s Friday! I don’t know about you, but the days have been flying by for me lately. I love it because it is already the weekend again, but I can’t believe that soon it will be time to start thinking about Christmas. I am not ready for that yet!

I realized the other day that I haven’t really shared much about my workouts on this blog. I love going to the gym. I go a lot – it is a big part of my life! I find that it gives me energy to get through the days, and it gets me out of the house. It also gives Lochlyn and I a bit of a schedule every day. I have to book her in with childcare at the gym ahead of time, so I get  a little bit of structure to my day.

gym clothes selfie

I lost a lot of strength while I was pregnant, and started going back to the gym when Lochlyn was 6 weeks old. The only exercise I did while pregnant was walking and a bit of prenatal yoga. Right now I have been working on getting my strength back. Typically I make it to the gym 4-5 days a week, and workout for 40 mins to an hour. Usually my workout schedule looks like this:

Monday: Upper body workout, HIIT on the elliptical (15-20 mins)

Tuesday: Lower body workout + abs

Wednesday: Steady state cardio on the bike

Thursday: Upper body workout, HIIT on the stairmaster (15-20 mins)

Friday: Lower Body workout + abs

I take the weekend off to rest, and focus on time with my family.

My strength workouts usually focus on a heavy compound exercise, like squats, deadlifts, chest presses, shoulder presses, etc. Then I add in a few other complimentary lifts. I usually do between 5-7 different exercises depending on the day, and around 15-25 sets total.

This schedule has been working for me and I feel like it is helping me get stronger. I mostly do cardio because I enjoy it. I actually look forward to my long cardio session every week. It gives me time to think, and I always feel great afterwards.

I have plans to start doing more cardio with Lochlyn outside next summer. We have a jogging stroller and are planning to purchase a bike trailer for her as well. My husband loves mountain biking so we want to get out and do that on the weekends.

fall walk

I really like running, but I have never gotten really into it. I have been running on and off for 18 years, but never regularly. I have actually been contemplating signing up for a race in the spring or fall next year but can’t make my mind up if this is something I want to do. I have only participated in one 5K, which was more for fun, and I didn’t train for it. I want to do something longer than a 5K – probably a 10K? I just am not sure if I want to stop focusing on lifting and instead focus on running.

My reasons for wanting to sign up for a race are to give me something to work towards, I like the idea of following a training plan, with a race at the end to reward my efforts. Also, I just want to try it and next year seems like a good time. I won’t be pregnant (hopefully!), and Lochlyn will be old enough for the jogging stroller, so she can come on runs with me. I guess another reason to get back into running would be because I enjoy it!

I am still not sold on the idea of signing up for a race.  My main hesitation is that it will be time-consuming. I have checked out a few training plans and it looks like I will have to commit a lot of time to running. I am not sure that I want to give up focusing on lifting weights to run – I really like lifting weights! I also am not sure about the expenses. I would need to buy new shoes, pay for registration, and probably buy a garmin, or some way to track my mileage outside.

I could register in the spring and train throughout the winter, but I would like to run outside with Lochlyn as much as possible, and it would be too cold and slippery. If I decided to run in the summer and race in the fall, I am not sure that I would be able to train on weekends as we go camping a lot in the summer, and want to go mountain biking.  You see my dilemma!

I think I need to decide soon, because If I race in the spring, it would be in May. I haven’t been running at all lately so I would want to switch my cardio over to running to get my body used to it again.

baby playing on the floor

This post if full of recycled photos and photos of Lochlyn! My goal for next week is to take more pictures!

Runners – any thoughts or advice? How much time would you devote per week for training for a 10K?

What does fitness look like for you on an average week?

Thinking Out Loud #1 – New Floors and New Clothes

I thought I would do something different this Thursday and link up with Amanda over at Running With Spoons. Here is a collection of my rambling thoughts from the week!

thinking out loud

1. My thoughts and prayers go out to the family of the soldier that was killed at Parliament Hill yesterday. He truly is a hero. I am also praying for Canada’s leaders during this difficult time.

2. On a much brighter note, today marks the one month anniversary of my first blog post on HonestlyAngela!

I still haven’t shared this blog with any of my friends and family, except for Josh and my Mom. I have written some really personal things that not very many people in my life know about, and I am not sure if I am ready for them to read it. At the same time I want this blog to be completely open and transparent, and I want anyone to be able to read it. I am thinking I will let others in on it soon. We will see…

3. My parents are coming to visit this weekend, and my Mom is taking me shopping! This is actually a late birthday present. We have been really busy lately, and my parents just sold their house and are preparing for their move, so its been hard to plan a weekend that works for all of us.

parents with lochlyn unnamed-49

I can’t wait to go shopping. My wardrobe is in major need of an update. I am actually still wearing clothes that I wore while I was pregnant (kind of embarrassing!). The other day Josh told me I looked like a tent in my comfy sweater. I guess I should start wearing clothes that fit.

I actually just started a Pinterest account for the sole purpose of deciding what kind of clothes I wanted to pick out for my birthday! I think it has really helped looking at different pictures to get ideas for what I would like. Also, I am not the best at dressing myself, so these photos really help! Here are a few fall outfits that I love:

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I have been all about leggings this season! They are so comfortable, but still look put together. I really like the layering in this outfit. I think plaid is so cute and casual, and I really like it paired with this knit sweater. I already have boots that are really similar to the ones in this picture. (Photo source)

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I never would have thought of pairing the two different prints together that the model to the right is wearing, but I love it! The plaid scarf adds a nice pop of colour, and the sweater would be perfect for fall or winter. Again, I am all about leggings, so long sweaters are where it’s at! (Photo source)

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I never think of wearing dresses in the fall or winter. It gets pretty cold here, so they aren’t always practical. I really love dresses though, and I am thinking a dress similar to this could be paired with leggings and taller boots when the weather gets colder. I love the look of sheer tights with boots. I also love that the outer layer is the same length as the dress. And I love the big chunky scarf – I would definitely wear this! (Photo source)

4. Enough fantasy shopping! In other news, our basement is finally finished! It flooded on July 1st, and we had to get the flooring redone. It was officially finished on Tuesday. It is so nice to have our basement back in usable condition, and our house is starting to return to normal again! We had carpet in our basement before the flood, but it has been replaced with vinyl flooring, which I am really loving.

vinyl floors

My parents are giving us some old furniture when they move and i can’t wait. Comfy leather couches for the win! The couch in the above photo is going to the dump! Also I took that picture before our baseboards were finished being installed. It looks a lot better now.

5. My Dad emailed me this article last week, and I have been thinking about it ever since:

Why Some Kids Try Harder and Some Kids Give Up

I am not sure that I completely agree with it, but I do think that the writer has some valid points and it has got me thinking. I catch myself telling Lohclyn she is smart and clever all the time. Maybe I need to start encouraging her efforts and perseverance? I was always told that I was smart growing up, and I think that it made me a bit lazy at applying myself, especially in school. At the same time, I want Lochlyn to know that I think she is incredibly smart, and beautiful, and perfect … and I love telling her these things. Maybe a healthy mix of both is what is best? What do you think?

baby girl in blue

6. Last but not least… One of my greatest challenges with this blog is taking pictures. I am not a big picture taker and it is hard for me to remember to take them throughout my day. I would like to include pictures on this blog, so this is something that I need to work on. When I go to add pictures to my blog post at the end of the day, I realize that the only pictures I took were of Lochlyn. Sorry for all of the baby pictures (but not that sorry because she is too cute!).

baby in new clothes

 

What are your favorite fall wardrobe staples?

Did you check out that article? What do you think about it?

Any tips for remembering to take pictures throughout the day? 

 

Why I Will Never Diet Again

I used to have a drinking problem. I quit drinking altogether at the age of 20. I have many reasons for quitting that would take forever to explain on this blog, but the short and sweet version is that drinking didn’t do anything good for me. I don’t have a problem if other people drink. I believe it is a personal choice, and that some people are better equipped to handle it than others. With my personality, and my past, drinking is not something that I wish to participate in anymore. It is just not worth it.

drinking water

Only water and Starbucks for me!

Dieting for me is pretty much exactly the same. Dieting has never done anything good for me. I am a better person when I don’t diet. I am not trying to make this decision for anyone else – to each their own. I just know that it is something that I never want to do again, and I never will.

I tried to quit dieting quite a few times, just like people try to quit other addictive habits. It wasn’t until having my baby and really looking at what dieting was doing to me, and my family, that I decided to quit for good.

family pose in brandon

I have started reading Intuitive Eating, by Evelyn Tribole and Elyse Resch. The first few chapters really emphasize why dieting isn’t the answer to happiness, and why you need to let go of dieting in order to eat intuitively. So far, the book has made me think about all the reasons why I never want to diet again, and all the negative effects it has had on me.

intuitive eating book

I never want to look to another diet to make me feel happier, prettier, more confident, or validated.

 

Why I will never diet again:

Obsession – While I was dieting I was constantly thinking about when I could eat my next meal and what it would be. I was obsessed with food. My mind was always going over how many calories I had eaten that day, or how many servings of carbs I had. The more I thought about food, the more I wanted it. The more I wanted it, the harder it was to follow my diet and the more miserable I became. Along with this it became harder and harder to trust myself around food. I felt like I had to diet in order to control myself or I would just eat everything. It is a vicious circle.

Brainwashing – Dieting teaches you “food rules” that dictate what you should and shouldn’t eat. Some examples of these “food rules” are “don’t eat after 6 pm”, or “carbohydrates will make you fat”. I developed so many ideas about what foods are good and bad and how I should eat them, that it made it impossible to eat normally. I sat down and wrote a list of all the food rules that I could think of that were affecting how I ate and it was pages long! These beliefs weren’t even true! They had become embedded so deep into my belief system, and they are difficult to recognize and get rid of.

Guilt – If I ate anything that wasn’t permitted on my diet I would feel ashamed and angry with myself. Even one piece of cake at my best friends birthday would be enough to completely send me over the edge and into complete despair.

Binge Eating, Overeating and Last Supper Eating – The more guilt I felt, the more I would eat. I figured if I already messed up my diet by eating something restricted, I might as well go “all in”  and eat everything in sight. This led to extreme physical discomfort, and I was an emotional mess. These binge eating episodes were usually followed by “last supper” eating – where I would tell myself I could eat whatever I wanted that evening/day/whatever, because the following day I would start a new diet, and then I would be “good”. This cycle repeated itself over and over and over.

Eating Disorders – My binge eating became more and more frequent until I couldn’t even control it. I would eat and eat until I was in physical pain. Then I would lie in a puddle of my own tears, devastated that I couldn’t control myself and that I was not able to follow my diet. Dieting lead me to develop binge eating disorder and orthorexia. It can also lead to bulimia, anorexia and other eating disorders.

Depression – Every time I messed up on a diet, I felt like a complete failure. I used to be so good at dieting, why couldn’t I comply with my new dieting rules? My self-esteem got lower and lower. I felt fat, and I couldn’t do anything about it. I also got more and more depressed and closed myself off to the rest of the world.

Secret Life  – I didn’t tell anyone what I was going through, not even my husband. I overate and binged in secret, just like I dieted in secret. This put a big wall up between us, and affected our marriage. I was in it completely alone and had no one to talk to. My husband felt so distant from me and didn’t know what was going on or how he could help.

Social Withdrawal – I not only became more distant with my husband, but with friends and other family members. I didn’t want to go to social outings because I could be placed in a situation where I would be expected to eat something that wasn’t part of my diet. I preferred to stay at home by myself and not explain myself to others.

Time Wasting – When I did spend time by myself at home, it was usually researching new diets or recipes. I was always looking for the next greatest diet – my answer to being thinness, and therefore to happiness. I could have spent that time doing much more productive or enjoyable things.ing

Excessive Exercising – I planned my diets around a large amount of exercise. I always felt obligated to perform the exercise or else I would have to eat less. On top of this, if I did happen to eat something that wasn’t part of my diet, I would feel compelled to workout even harder at the gym. This took quite a toll on my body.

Health Issues – I developed Hypothalamic Amenorrhea because of dieting and over-exercising. This occurs when you place a large amount of stress on your body, often through over-exercising and not consuming enough calories. Your body reacts by no longer getting monthly periods. I suffered with Hypothalamic Amenorrhea for over 3 years. Not only was I not getting my periods, I was extremely cold, my skin was incredibly dry, my hair started falling out, and I had no energy. My husband and I wanted to get pregnant and I felt like it was my fault that we weren’t able to conceive.

Weight gain – Dieting is counter-productive. I lost a lot of weight dieting, but I gained it all back and then some. I would be thinner now, if I had never dieted, and believe it or not, this is the case for the majority of dieters. According to Intuitive Eating, over 90 percent of diets don’t work. Even more surprising is that “dieting is a consistent predictor of weight gain”. In a 2007 study, UCLA researchers concluded that up to 2/3 of dieters regain more weight than they initially lose (Tribole, Resch,p.7).  Restricting calories teaches your body to conserve fuel, which causes you to burn fewer calories. This slows your metabolism. The  more you diet, the harder it is to lose weight. Restrictive eating also leads to binge eating and overeating, which also causes weight gain.

I realize that these seem like extreme examples of how dieting can go bad. Most people start a diet with the intent to lose a few pounds and then stop dieting. Problems like the ones listed above escalate very slowly so they are difficult to recognize. If you do diet, please be conscious of how it is affecting you!

If you made it to the end, thanks for sticking around!

baby and mommy selfie

Has dieting affected you negatively? How so?

Have you read Intuitive Eating? What did you think?

Maple Pumpkin Pie Bars

Before this year, I never really was a big fan of pumpkin. I didn’t like pumpkin spice lattes, I could take or leave pumpkin pie. All the pumpkin craziness that went on around fall just made no sense to me. This year has been a lot different.

It started with putting pumpkin in my oatmeal, and progressed to ordering fall-flavored lattes and baked goods at coffee shops. Josh’s Aunt’s pumpkin pie over Thanksgiving was amazing! Last weekend, it was these pumpkin bars.

two maple pumpkin pie bars

I have to admit, upon first tasting these bars I wasn’t a huge fan. I was expecting light and cake-y, which these bars aren’t at all.  I put them in the fridge overnight and tasted another one the next day. Yum! It was delicious. These bars are dense and moist. The texture almost reminds me of pumpkin pie, or cheesecake. They are so much better cold! I made a big batch on the weekend and it is already almost gone! They are fairly healthy, but they don’t taste like it! Hope you enjoy!

maple pumpkin pie bars with gourds

Maple Pumpkin Pie Bars

Makes  24 bars

Ingredients

Wet Ingredients

  • 4 eggs
  • 3/4 cup apple sauce
  • 1/4 cup coconut oil (warmed until liquid)
  • 1 can pure pumpkin (apx. 2 cups)
  • 3/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 tsp vanilla

Dry Ingredients

  • 3/4 cup brown sugar
  • 2 cups + 2 tbsp. spelt flour
  • 2 tsp. baking powder
  • 1 tsp. baking soda
  • 1/4 tsp. salt
  • 2 tsp. cinnamon
  • 1 tsp. nutmeg
  • 1/4 tsp. cloves

Cream Cheese Icing

  • 8 oz. cream cheese (I used full fat)
  • 1/2 cup plain greek yogurt (I used 2%)
  • 2-3 tbsp. maple syrup
  • 1 tsp. vanilla

Directions

Bars

  • Preheat oven to 350 degrees and spray/butter a 9×11 baking pan
  • Add wet ingredients to a large bowl and beat on medium speed using a mix master or hand held mixer until thoroughly combined
  • In a separate, medium-sized bowl, stir dry ingredients together until combined
  • Add dry ingredients to wet ingredients and stir until just combined
  • Pour batter into greased baking pan and spread evenly
  • Bake for 40-50 minutes, or until toothpick comes out clean

Icing

  • Combine all ingredients in small bowl
  • Beat on medium-high setting in mix master or with a hand held mixer until icing starts to get lighter and fluffy. This icing doesn’t get as “fluffily” as most icing because of the greek yogurt.
  • Spread evenly onto bars once bars are cooled

*Store these bars in an air-tight container in the refrigerator, and wait to try them until they are cold – they taste so much better that way!

maple pumpkin pie bars

If you try making them let me know what you think!

How do you feel about pumpkin? Do you love it, or could you take it or leave it?

What is your favorite type of fall baking?