Friday, October 7, 2016

What I'm Doing to Make Me Happier Today

You may have noticed that I've been quiet for the last couple of weeks. I felt the need to find some calm in my life. We have been going through a lot of different changes lately, and that usually leads to some kind of reflexion.

I felt like I wasn't being as good of a mom and wife as I know I can be.  I was stressed, and frustrated more often, and that made me mean and inpatient and uptight with everyone.  And when it came down to it, when I sat down and thought of ways that I can enjoy motherhood more, and not just survive it, and when I thought of ways to be less stressed, blogging was something i felt could take the back seat in my life for a little while.

I've always loved writing. I loved that the blog helps me keep a daily journal, and Trevon has pointed out several times that I express myself much better in writing VS. in person. The blog will remain up and going for those who are interested in what I have to say about life and everything in it. I'm just not going to be posting quite as regularly for a while.

What is more important in my life needs more attention. My family, my kids, won't slow down because I want to document our life.  My time in the evenings are more valuably spent with my  husband or on bettering myself and being healthy, instead of sitting at a computer.

In the two weeks that I took off, I have felt calmer --Not so rushed.  I have been kinder, and a little more patient with my kids. I have felt much more content with where I am in life than I have in a long time.

Hobbies aren't worth having if they take too much time away from your life and make you feel stressed in anyway. Hobbies are things you enjoy. Things that bring you happiness, and make you a better person. Blogging is still fun for me, and I will keep doing it  now and then. But it's not what I will be dedicating my life to right now.

If you're looking for a new balance in your life too, I would encourage you to look at how you spend your free time. Does it make you happy? What are you doing that is causing you stress or to enjoy life less than you should be?  What, in your life, can you control and change for the better?   That's what you need to be focusing on right now.

There is a time and a season for everything. Right now, for me, that means working on being more involved in my kid's lives and being a more engaged wife. It means not comparing myself to others or spending countless hours trying to write in a way that makes life happy.  Spending my free time doing stuff that I love, not stuff that I feel like I "have" to do.

So, if you're interested in following our life along (with, of course the added things that I love), please keep coming to read. Follow along on facebook and twitter, because that's where I post new content. I'm still here, I'm just not here on a daily basis.



What have you changed in life lately?

What are you doing to be happier today?

Friday, September 23, 2016

5 on Friday

Here are 5 things that have happened for us this week.

1.  I saw this sign on my run the other day. It was pretty fitting for that particular run. And on the other side it said "Embrace the pain so you can feel victory." or something along those lines. It was a pretty hard run for me that day, so I felt the need to repeat it over and over in my head. It makes me wonder if they know they get a lot of runners coming past here and decided to help them out a little.


2.  I noticed my chocolate stash is getting quite big. I get little treats sometimes from people and end up hiding them away for an "emergency day" when I just don't think I'll make it another second with out a little treat.  I also have a bag of cadbury eggs hidden in a separate spot, but I'm not going to say where. 



3. This little guy is already in 6 month clothes. He's 3 months old...ok almost 4, but still. He's growing like crazy! He's also getting a little heavy to carry him in this little infant backpack. 

4.  We went to the cabin this week. It's beautiful up there right now, even with the lack of water we've been having this year. I took my camera to get some good fall pictures and when I went to get it out, I noticed that I grabbed the bag, but my camera was still at home on the counter after some pictures of something else. I was really disappointed. My phone camera did ok though. I still won't be able to print any of these pictures off with good quality, but they are pretty to have anyway. 



5. Our AC broke yesterday. Luckily, it's going too cool off a lot this weekend (too much in my opinion) and we won't need it. But it's still not any fun to have a broken AC and have to worry about fixing it. 


What's one good thing that happened to you this week?

To link up for 5 on Friday, check out this blog:





Thursday, September 22, 2016

Easy Taco Soup

Fall time is when I start to get in the mood for soups. I think that's the case for just about everyone.  One soup that I've been craving lately is taco soup and I have the easiest recipe for taco soup ever! It's super easy because it's a dump soup, you just dump everything into your crockpot or soup pot and warm it through. So here is what I put into mine:



1/4-1/2 lbs ground beef browned and seasoned with salt and pepper
1/2 diced onion
2 TBS taco seasoning
1 can black beans
1 can red beans
1 can corn
1 can diced tomatoes (if I have fresh tomatoes on hand I prefer those)
1 can tomato sauce

When it's warmed through, I like to grate some cheese and sour cream on top and eat it with Frito chips or tortilla chips.  It's perfect for fall time, and it's a favorite at any fall get together because every one loves taco soup, and its crazy easy.


Wednesday, September 21, 2016

My Anytime Workout

What do you do on the days that you know you need to workout, or you really want to workout, but you can't?  On days like this, when, for whatever reason (being busy, kids not cooperating, no babysitter, etc) I can't get a workout in, I usually try to do some really quick routine.  Honestly, though, lately that has barely even been happening. But this last week, I've tried to work harder at getting some kind of workout into my day, even if it's small.

Lately, by the time I am able to get around to a workout, I don't feel like doing a workout anymore. The kids are finally in bed and happy, and I just want to veg out on the couch. This is an even bigger problem for me when it's cold outside. So I know I've got to get into a routine and keep it before the winter hits. And one thing I know that is hard for me, is getting changed to do a workout, especially if it's a quick - less than 20 minutes- workout. So this week I decided I was going to do this little routine before getting ready for bed. Jeans, sweats, whatever, it didn't matter what I was wearing, I'd do my best no matter what.

Here's what I've been doing:



Holding a plank, without dropping down to my knees, for an entire song (usually a four minute song) is my goal right now. Sometimes it's easier for me to do this if I'm combining my plank with something else, like plank jacks or mountain climbers for a few intervals.  If you need to start out small, do a knee plank instead of a full one, or pick a smaller amount of time for your goal. 

Hover squats are one of my favorite workouts. Mixing it up with full squats or pulsing a squat and holding a squat is what I usually do. The best thing about this workout, is that it's your workout. There's not a rule that says you have to do the exact same workout as me (or anyone else).  So hold squat, make it a wall sit, work do full squats, whatever as long as it's for 3-5 minutes.

Push-ups are something I used to be really good at but I'm not anymore. This takes a lot of work for me now to do full body push ups.  My goal is to improve and gradually make it to 100 push ups. Right now I'm doing 5 sets of full body push ups with a one minute rest in between. 


The best thing about these at home workouts is that it's 100% your workout. It doesn't need to be exactly like mine or your workout buddy's or anyone else's. As long as your improving, that's what matters.  Set small, achievable goals so that you won't get discouraged and keep moving forward and challenging yourself in new ways.  This might not be a really challenging workout, but it's still a workout. There might not be a lot of cardio or movement or anything like that, but even a little movement is better than no movement. 


What is your favorite kind of workout to do at home?

When do you find a little time to squeeze your workout in?

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Parks and Bikes and Adjustments

Some days M hates that J is at school, and some days she loves it. While I'm working, she's usually playing and jumping on my bed while listening to music. I think she's figuring out the morning routine now and that makes everyone happy. 


The other day while I wasn't in the room for a second, M decided to try out my phone. I came back to find 93 pictures like this of V.  My phone just had an update and I'm not really sure if I like that you can get to the camera now with out putting in the password. M sure likes it though. 


After school on Thursday, we were all starting to get on each other's nerves a little.  M and J wouldn't stop fighting and I needed some fresh air. So I loaded their bikes up in the car and met my sister at our church parking lot to let them ride bikes with their cousins. It was probably the best decision I had made all week long. They road bikes for a few hours until it was time to go home and make dinner. And I was able to sit and visit with my sister. It's amazing how much adult interaction can help turn my day around.


That bike ride set the tone for the rest of the weekend. We spent a lot of time either at parks or bike riding.  We took the training wheels and peddles off of J's bike at the beginning of the summer so that she could use it like a balance bike.  (We bought M a balance bike and I noticed that she seemed to be progressing at the bike riding thing way faster than J did, so we wanted to make J's bike into a balance bike).  We thought she was ready to try peddling this weekend (after she tried my niece's bike), so we put her peddles back on. It didn't take her too long. 


Friday was another cousin day, I've said this a million times, but I'm really glad my kids have lots of cousins near by to be friends with. We went to feed the ducks and play at the park for a few hours. 


After all the playing, we came home and watched a show while I made dinner. You would think with all the teasing that J does to V, he'd hate when she's around, but he loves it. Every time he sees her, he gets a huge smile on his face and gets really excited. It's pretty adorable, but it sure makes teaching J to give him space hard. 



On Saturday Trevon had a work party at a park. So the girls made sure to get in some good running around while we got to know all the people he works with. Trevon decided to join in after we were done eating. This was probably the best picture I got of the girls playing, they wouldn't sit still long enough to get anything better. That's a good sign of playing hard. 


V only went on the slide once and then took a little nap while everyone else played. 



At the moment, I'm making some new goals and changes with this blog. I'm not sure where it will take me yet, but I'm excited to figure it out. With all the changes in our schedule around here lately, the blog has to have a little change too. What is it that you guys want to see more of here? Workout tips? Product reviews? More personal/update/everyday posts? Email me, or comment below to let me know! 






Friday, September 16, 2016

A Few Happenings from Yesterday

Yesterday marked the first day that we were not only on time for school, but we were not rushing it. I was so proud of us for getting to the school, and walking to the kindergarten area, and still having time to spare. We were not running, we were not rushing out the door. So, I obviously had to take a picture for proof.

I've never been one to be late for things. I'm usually the one that's right on time. But having kids and changed that. It seems like no matter how many times we tell the girls to go potty before, someone always needs to pee right as we are walking out the door. Or they decide that they do, in fact, want a coat, or they forget their backpack...I mean, they always have a reason to run back inside. Anyway, it's something that routine will change. As soon as we get in a good routine, we will get the hang of things. 


While J was at school, M and V and I went driving around to find a place for family pictures. We still don't know where that will be happening yet. The Utah leaves aren't super vibrant this year since we've had a really dry year. But we will find a place. 

When we picked J up, we stopped at my mom's for what was supposed to be a quick visit, just to get a picture of V's blessing. It turned into an afternoon of playing with cousins.  We love that cousins are so close and we are all great friends. 

While the kids played, I helped my mom make snickerdoodles. These are some of the only snickerdoodles I will eat. I just don't care for them, although I do really like the raw dough. 


While the cookies baked, I did some push ups with V. He thought it was really funny to try to grab my hair ever time I came down. It didn't last long though, because my arms have gotten pretty weak and I can only do a few push ups-- something I'm working on. 


Remember the other day when I said I needed to go to Target? Well I didn't go because by the time I was able to, M didn't want to go with me and I didn't want to take everyone. She hid under the desk, crying because I asked her if she wanted to go. She did not, she wanted to jump in the puddles instead. 


So I tried to take her picture to show her how we look when we are sad. It kind of back-fired, because she's really actually pretty when she's sad, not just when she's happy.


Then J wanted a picture by the window too. Is anyone else jealous of how pretty their daughters are? 


Last night I decided to get a little workout in even if it wasn't going running or doing a hard Grokker workout. I did a quick 15 (ish)  minute workout: 4 minute plank, 3 minute hover squats, and 5 sets of push-ups.  I felt pretty good afterwords, this morning I'm a little more sore than I want to admit, though.  

What is your workout for the day?

What's your favorite cookie?










Wednesday, September 14, 2016

Is Crimped Hair Still In?

Last night I was feeling good enough for a run.  A mile and a half at about a 8:30 pace. Not great, but getting better. When we got a massage the other day, the therapist kindly let me know I have no core muscle. (Thanks, I just had a baby. :) So I finished my work out with a plank. What's the longest plank you can do? I did one to a whole 4 minute song. I felt like that was a pretty good start.

When I got home, I found V like this. For some reason, when he sits in this boppy pillow, he scoots himself backwards until is he's upside down.



This morning I decided to do my hair crimped. It's been several years since I've done this. I feel like it kind of makes my hair look huge sometimes. But since I got a hair cut, I think it's not too bad now. Please tell me if I'm wrong.  Or maybe this style is outdated now?  I do J's hair like this a lot because I think she looks so cute with it crimped.


We dropped J off at school early this morning, only to find out that she forgot her back pack. We had to go back home and get it and then drop her off again, this time we were late.  Luckily, I have an awesome sister in law who happened to be dropping her son off too and offered to take J to the door.  We are getting better at making it out the door on time. Now hopefully tomorrow she doesn't forget her back pack. Then she will have time to walk to the class instead of run. 
When we got home, M requested a game of memory.  I had a whole list of things to do, but I decided it was probably more important to give her some one on one attention for a little bit. The rest of the day has gone the same. I don't know if thats a good thing, since I spent much more time taking care of kids needs, or a bad thing since I didn't get most of my to-do list done. 


Lunch today was a chili dog. Do you ever get sick of lunch?  I love food, that's not what I mean. I just get sick of finding what I want for lunch.  Today I wanted something other than a salad or sandwich, so this won.  Life is a lot easier if you like hotdogs. 


Goals for the rest of the day:

Drink water

Go to Target

Workout.

What are your goals for the day?

Hotdogs, love or hate them?

Are you usually early, on time, or late?






Tuesday, September 13, 2016

Weekenders

 Struggling. This weekend was full of struggling for me.  Not all of it, there were defenitly some really great things. It's just that the exhaustion I've felt hit a new point. Nursing V is really taking it out of me lately. He may be sleeping through the night, and so am I, but every ounce of energy I have gets sucked out of me when he eats.

Friday was early out day for J. And by the time I got her back home from school that morning, and fed V before his morning nap, I felt like I could not get off the couch.  Two hours later, and a huge mess, I told my sister I couldn't take the fighting the girls were doing anymore, so we went there to let the kids play. Where I sat on her floor, still exhausted.

Saturday morning was a little better, but mostly the same. So when we went to play at my parents house, my dad took my blood pressure. 84/60! You guys, do you understand how low that is? And I was feeling better that day, So I really can't imagine how low it was on Friday.

Water, water is so important.  I've been horrible at it apparently, and that's probably why my blood pressure is so low. So focusing on that a little more this week is the goal.

Because of being so weak, this weekend was a little bit of a blur.  I know we must have done some homework, because this got done.


We didn't have yarn, so I cut up a cream-ish ribbon for the hair. And J did the rest of the decorating. It's supposed to be "like her". 

M is finally getting used to our new routine. It doesn't take as long to get her in the car to go and she waits much more patiently while we wait for J to come out of her class. 


Friday night this little guy showed us again, that he's not so little. He's only 3 months old, but these 6 month jammies fit him just right. 


After my dad took my blood pressure on Saturday, Trevon and I went to get a late birthday present- a 90 minute massage. It was amazing. The massage therapist did a really great job on my shoulders.  They were in bad shape since I've been holding V a lot lately. If you've never gotten a massage, I want  you to seriously consider it. The feeling of having all your muscles loose and happy is one of the best things ever.

After our massage, and picking the kids back up, we went to my Father-in-law's house to watch the game and have some dinner.  I sat on the couch and enjoyed watching the reactions to the game and letting V eat again (which sucked more energy out with it) By the time the game was over, I was basically sleeping with my eyes open. 

Some time this weekend, this happened. And I took a picture to remind myself that I'm super glad that my kids all love each other and are good friends, even if they drive each other crazy (and me crazy) sometimes. 


I only got about 3 miles total in last week. But hopefully I'll be feeling ready to get going again and get more miles in this week. 

What was your weekend like?






Friday, September 9, 2016

Currently:September

September is here, and it's starting to feel like fall around here. September is normally a month of 80's weather.  This year, we are already hitting down in the 70's. Don't get me wrong, 70 and above is still great weather, but I'm kind of a lot sad to see summer go so quickly. I am not ready for cold weather, at all. But, since September is here, I'm going to share some things that are currently happening around here. If you're wanting to join in on the Currently posts, you can check out Anne's blog and join in there!

Currently Reading: At the moment I'm taking a small break from reading books so that I can focus a little bit more on running. Normally the only reading time I usually get is in the evenings, which also happens to be my running time at the moment. I am reading lots of letters from J's teacher, and her homework though. I have to say that it's a little sad, and scary, that I read this problem and was confused. How do you draw to show what you know about the number 2? Common core is proving to be very annoying already and she's only in kindergarten! How in the world am I going to be able to help her with homework later on if I already don't know what they are looking for when they ask me to draw how I know these things? I feel like it's not fair way to word things.



Trying: Well, I'm pretty sure I have low iron at the moment. Exhausted, hair falling out, restless legs, headache, anxiety (maybe that's caused by something else, can't be sure on that:), so I'm trying to incorporate more iron rich foods into my diet. I'm not a big fan of spinach, and read meat can be expensive. So this might be tricky, but I'm working on it because I'd rather not have to take a pill for it instead.
Also trying to soak up every last bit of summer that we can. So we went on a walk last night and the girls rode their bikes. It was perfect outside for it and they are getting real good at the balancing thing.


Currently hoping: I'm hoping that I feel good enough to run tonight, and that I can do it earlier than bed time for the girls. It's getting darker earlier and I don't care for running in the dark all that much.

Currently decorating: nothing. I've thought about getting the fall stuff out, but this goes back to what I was saying before, I'm not ready for the cold, so lets get as much summer stuff done as we can. That reminds me though, I need to find a new wreath, because our spring/summer one took a beating this year and it's falling apart.

Currently to-do listing: I gotta get working on some halloween costumes.  And go find a new baby pacifier since V lost his. I also need to get some new clothes for M soon since she's all the sudden too big for her pants and long sleeved shirts. I need to get my car key battery replaced because it stinks to have to manually unlock the car (I know, first world problems). And I need to get my hair cut. I love my hair long, but it's starting to drive me crazy, and it takes forever to dry.


Are you excited for fall or holding on to summer still?

Any one have a great way to get iron with out taking a supplement?

What's on your to-do list?

Thursday, September 8, 2016

Our Day and A Frustrating Run

This little guy woke up in a great mood yesterday. It's a really good thing when this happens, because mornings lately have been a little hectic.  Getting J to get dressed and eat with out doddling has proven to be harder than I hoped.  Then getting M to come back from dropping J off at school hasn't been easy either. That little girl loves her sister. They are best friends, so it's sad for her to have J gone for half the day.  But at least this little man has been so happy and easy for the whole thing. 


While J was at school, we ate breakfast and did some chores. Then, when it was time to pick J up, M was super happy about it. In fact, she asked so much to pick her up this morning that I left extra early and we waited for 20 minutes in the car for her to come out.  While we were waiting, there was a car parked in front of us, M was getting real frustrated that no one was moving. She started yelling "come on car, MOVE IT!" I sat, laughing, and trying to think if that is something she's heard me say or where she would have picked that up from. I guess I need to be a little better about watching what I say in the car.  (I did do M's hair 3 times this morning. It's just wild hair with a mind of it's own).


When J was done, we went straight to the park for a picnic with the cousins. Theres not a lot more nice weather ahead of us now, we want to soak up as much as possible. It was fun to catch up with my sister while the kids all played. It's strange to some people that it feels like forever when I haven't seen family members for more than a couple of days, but it's completely normal for me. I grew up with cousins, and I love that my kids get to grow up with theirs. 



I want to talk a little bit about disappointing runs.  After taking a small break for any reason, it takes a little time to get back into the routine of running.  Even after last weekend, taking a 4 hour trip to Idaho, my legs were aching to get moving again, but by the time I got around to it in the evening, they didn't want to cooperate.  It's hard to come back from an injury or a baby, or even just a trip, and feel your body not being the way it was before. 


Right after I had V, and I started running again, it all came back really quickly. Then I had a small injury and had to take a couple of weeks off. Those couple of weeks set me back far more than I expected them to. That's ok. It's normal. It takes a lot of discipline to get me back to where I want to be now. 

The best part about running, is that it doesn't matter where you start, you can always improve. I only ran 2 miles, and it was hard for me, and I was frustrated and discouraged.  Some days are just like that. The important thing is to remember that even the bad runs are still runs that will help you improve. 



I saw this quote the other day and it was a great reminder after a run like that! 


What are you doing to enjoy the last bit of nice weather?

Any tricks to help mornings go more smoothly?

What is your current mantra to help you keep going when it gets hard?





Wednesday, September 7, 2016

Our Labor Day Weekend

Our long weekend started Thursday night.  We went to dinner for my birthday, with Trevon's dad (We went to my favorite Mexican place, Joe Veras). While we were waiting, M was the entertainment. She danced and sang and jumped off this bench the whole wait.


We stopped for a few groceries on our way home from dinner.  When I was picking out some peaches in the produce, I turned around to see this. 


He's already over 13 lbs. And he's only 3 months old. That's big for one of my babies. 


For Labor day, we went on a little visit to Idaho to see some family.  It's been a year since we've been able to go up, and it was long past due.  So we loaded the car up on Friday morning, and took the 4 hour drive up.  We've gotten pretty good at the long car ride thing with kids, we borrow my parent's DVD player, and load a basket up with snacks to entertain the girls. V slept most of the way, so that made the car ride super easy.

We got up there and unloaded our stuff. While we got settled, V was sitting in the bouncer. When I went to check on him, I found him like this.


The girls had put a diaper on the outside of his clothes and around the buckle.  He's so patient, he didn't get upset at all. One of these days, though, the girls are going to be surprised when he can start teasing back. 

We went to Mesa Falls on Saturday. It was a little chilly by the waterfall, but we still had a fun little walk. We stopped in the little lodge visitor center first, and got to check out some real animal furs and bones. 



The girls liked pointing out all the different flowers.  It reminded me of walks with my grandma when we would go camping. One of her favorite things to do when we would go camping is to take her camera on walks and take pictures of us and talk about the plants we were seeing. 


Mesa Falls is pretty, and you can go right up by the falls on the trail.  It's a really easy hike (walk?) so it's a good one to take kids on. There is a trail with stairs or stroller ramps and lots of places to stop and take pictures. 


The leaves are already starting to change colors. I like fall, but I'm not sure I'm ready for it to be that cold yet. I wish summer lasted forever! We were in jackets every time we went outside Saturday and Sunday. It felt like winter to me. 


 When we got done walking, we were all ready for dinner. So we went back to the house and then went out to one of the 3 restaurants they have, (I'm actually pretty sure they have more than 3 in Ashton, I just have only been to the three of them) Big Juds.  They have some really good burgers and when we got done we were all in the mood for ice cream too. I got cookie dough.


After church on Sunday, we spent the day inside, because it was freezing.  We got to visit with family and then had a big family dinner with roast and potatoes and some really good rolls.  We visited all day long and watched some fun videos. Several were of this hilarious guy. His name is Ryan Hamilton, and he's from Ashton. So it was kind of fun because some of Trevon's family remember him from high school and stuff.  


We went to bed early Sunday night because we were driving home Monday morning and it would have been bad if we stayed up all night for a third night before leaving. We got up and packed the car, and visited a little more.  I made some sandwiches to eat in the car so we wouldn't have to stop on the way home too much, and we didn't have any plastic bags. We did have this press and seal wrap, I know this has been out for a while, I'm just a little far behind. But I did discover that this stuff makes it really easy to eat in the car. So next time you're on a road trip and need to have some lunch, but don't want to make a huge mess, try wrapping your sandwich is this. It will catch the crumbs and then you just roll it up and throw it in your garbage bag when you're done. 


What did you do for labor day?

Any traveling tips?