Saturday, February 26, 2011

Totaled

Yesterday morning, I was on the road by 6:37 am with Anna and John Andrew in tow. We were headed to Philly for an appointment at USCIS regarding Anna's Certificate of Citizenship. Our appointment was at 9:15, but I figured the drive would take 2 hours on a good day, and had no idea how long it would take during rush hour traffic. I was worried about getting sleepy during the drive and had a big cuppa Joe next to me when I pulled out of the driveway.

It was a gross day: rainy, 44 degrees, and foggy in spots. But it meant spring was coming, because it wasn't snow. And the kids were sleeping, I had some Seeds Family Worship playing, and the roads were empty. I was surprised by how the morning had gone so easily; the baby woke up and ate when I needed him to, Anna had not gotten upset by waking up early and having to get into the car so quickly, and I hadn't even forgotten the snack bag! The sky was very dark for that time of day because of the rain, but otherwise, it was a pretty good morning.

We were quite a ways down the road by the time the sky lightened enough to be "daytime." Anna was not impressed and decided to go back to sleep. Not a peep from the baby. But despite the brighter skys, it was actually harder to see, because it was raining harder and the traffic had increased, with more splashing and spraying water. My wipers were not on the highest setting, but I was worried they soon would be! Around 7:45 I started seeing road signs for King of Prussia, and I was relaxing a bit because I knew I was getting close to Philly. The sooner I could get of the road, the better!

Traffic was moving well. In fact, I was in the left lane, and being passed by drivers in the right lane! People who have driven with me know that I tend to drive fast, and it's unusual for me to be passed unless I specifically am driving slowly. I glanced down and I was going 62mph; the speed limit was 65mph. How fast must those people be going, and in the rain to boot!

That's when I felt my car start to hydroplane. It's an indescribable feeling when you realize that you have lost control of several thousands of pounds of machinery, and there is nothing you can do to regain control. And your life and the lives of your children are at stake.

I tried to put on the brakes, but of course, the tires weren't on the ground, so it did nothing. The car started to twist, turning towards the left and heading straight for the center concrete median. The steering wheel was useless in my hands, but I held on and tried to steer away from the median anyway. I knew a crash was inevitable, so I did the only thing that made sense- the only thing that could help us. "Jesus, help us, save us, protect us, keep my babies safe!" I prayed. I felt no fear, just a desperation to protect my children from something completely out of my control.

The car turned so much that we hit the median, it was almost head-on. A split second after hitting the median, we were struck by another vehicle on the rear driver's side, so that the car started spinning, and I was suddenly facing the on-coming traffic.

In that moment, I had a few distinct thoughts running through my head. My airbag must have gone off when we hit the median and already deflated, because it was limp and useless in front of me; what good is this going to do if we are still in motion, I wondered. The cars were hurling towards us at 60-70 mph, and swerving to avoid hitting us, parting like the Red Sea for Moses, I thought. I remember thinking that they would avoid us but all hit each other. This is going to be one heck of a pile-up, and it's my fault! Then we kept spinning, a full 360 degrees and then some.

The car finally stopped moving when the rear passenger side and most of the back of the car smashed into the center concrete median. It was quiet for a moment.

It suddenly occurred to me that I was alive. Thank you, Jesus. Praise God! I looked over my shoulder, and saw the baby's car seat undisturbed, the passenger-side rear door apparently unharmed. He started fussing, and I reached to stick his pacifier into his mouth, so thankful that I knew he was breathing. I turned more and saw Anna's wide eyes looking at me. She had no obvious injuries, and her car seat also looked untouched. There was no rain or wind coming into our car, so I knew all the windows were intact.

"What happened, Momma?"

"There was an accident, and the car is all broken, but Jesus and the angels kept us safe and we are all okay!"

She smiled at me. "Yes, it was the angels!"

I unbuckled, worried for a moment that the car was on fire, but decided it was just the smell of the airbag. I couldn't find my phone- it must have gone flying in the crash. Hopefully someone else was calling 911. I got out, quickly went to the door behind me and opened it to check Anna. She was calm, as Anna tends to be in high-stress times, and she smiled at me. I ran to the other side of the car. It was a tight squeeze to get into a position to open the door since that side of the car was wedged against the concrete median. I pulled it open, and saw my baby's face scrunched up and red, crying in protest of the violent awakening from his peaceful nap.

I have never been so happy to hear my baby cry. Ever.

I reached over and picked up my glasses from the seat between the kids, just realizing that they must have flown off during the accident. I wasn't sure if I should remove the kids from their car seats or wait for the paramedics or what. I checked the front passenger seat and still couldn't find my phone. I really hoped someone had called 911.

A gentleman came running towards me. "Are you okay?"

"I'm fine, and my kids are okay, too."

"Can I do anything for you?"

For anyone who has ever taken a CPR class, you know that one of the first things they teach you is to delegate calling 911 to a bystander. Not just to say "someone call 911" but to actually assign the task to a particular person: YOU, call 911. I was totally having that moment. But instead of being the "rescuer/provider," I was the victim. I found this to be a little funny, but that might have been the stress:)

"Can you call 911 for me? I can't find my phone."

"911. RIGHT! I'll call now!" He scurried away, and I went again to check on Anna.

The kids really were okay. The baby had stopped crying, just fussing a tiny bit around his pacifier. Anna reached up to touch my face. I smiled at her. I had no clue what I was supposed to be doing, but I was so thankful that we were okay.

The gentleman who called 911 came back, again asking what he could do to help. I borrowed his phone, intending to call John. But then I remembered that John was probably still asleep, and his phone was on silent. So I dialed Abigail's number.

She picked up, and I told her I had to talk to Daddy right away. 30 seconds later I was still waiting for him to get on the line, and I hadn't even heard Abigail go wake him up. "Abigail, we were in a car accident and I have to talk to Daddy RIGHT NOW." I think she finally picked up on the urgency in my voice. John was most definitely asleep as I jabbered "we were in an accident. Everyone is okay, but I think the car is totaled. You will have to come get us. Take Abigail to Aa to Zz (day care) and come get us. And call my phone as soon as we hang up, so that I can try to find it."

In typical John  fashion, his response was brilliant. "Okay."

I hung up and asked Anna to help listen for my phone. It was loud and traffic on the other side of the median was still whipping past us. I couldn't hear it. The gentleman who was helping me offered to call my phone, and I still didn't find it. Highway patrol showed up.

That's when things start getting fuzzy. I found out that only one other car had been involved (the one who struck us and sent us spinning) but that mom and her 2 kids were okay- their car was still drivable and they were moving it to the shoulder. Thank God. I tried to start my car, and the key would not budge. I couldn't even get the key out of the ignition! So, remembering that John had lost his house key, and the cat-sitter still had our spare, I slipped the rest of my keys off the chain and into my pocket- at least we would be able to get into the house! The state trooper finally showed up and literally yelled at me to move my car to the shoulder. I told him I couldn't. "Have you even tried?" he asked, the irritation clear in his tone.

For the first time since the accident, I felt myself get a little worked up. Had I even tried? No, I just said that because I wanted my car to stay in the middle of I-76 with my children sitting in it! But I knew getting upset wouldn't help. I told him I had tried, but couldn't get it started, and wasn't sure it would move even if I could get the engine going. (Had he not looked at the car?)



I didn't think this was toooo bad, but apparently it was enough that the stroller in the back was damaged and is now unusable. Amazing that we all made it through unharmed. Truly, an act of God.


This picture really brought it home for me- I didn't realize how much the front of the car was smashed in until I saw that there was basically nothing left in front of the wheel. And normally, there is quite a bit of car in front of that wheel!


Note the back wheel- broken axle for sure.

Eventually we moved the kids to the patrol truck, someone gave Anna a children's book from their car to keep her occupied, I grabbed our stuff out of the car (the kind gentleman even grabbed the stroller from the back of the car, pulling it over the back seat since we couldn't get the hatch open- but I forgot to grab my most important item: my car charger for my iPhone!), and from there drove to the service station just up the road. The State Police officer met us there and did all the license, registration, insurance stuff. Then the medics checked us out. I decided to go to the hospital because I was having a LOT of pain, and I also wanted the kids checked out- were were going 60+ when we hit the median! The tow guy gave me his info and the medics loaded us into the truck. Surprisingly, when they radioed in, the hospital decided to classify me as a trauma, despite the fact that I was walking and talking without a problem!

The paramedics were having a fun time with the kids, and other than the fact that every bump sent shooting pain through the middle of my chest, I was doing just fine. The trauma doc checked out the kids and gave them a clean bill of health. I started having some blurred vision and it became clear I had hit my head, so they did a CT scan of my head and chest: no obvious brain injury, but a fractured sternum. John finally arrived, and a few hours later we were on our way with a script for Percocet (nice:). A few black and blue spots, but nothing too bad.



Arm + Airbag. I have something similar on my forehead.


Right hip... from the buckle digging.


Left knee. Not too dark, but still swollen.


Right chest. Exactly where the baby likes to pound on me while he nurses. Nice.

I've never been in a car accident before, but it's kind of interesting... the hospital will be sending my bills straight to my insurance company. I might be getting a ticket for "driving too fast for conditions"- despite being passed by other vehicles just before hydroplaning. I might get a bill from the state for the cost of damages to the concrete median, but insurance will cover that, too. I will find out Wednesday if the car is "officially" totaled, but I can't fathom a way it would be fixable.

Anna was a rock during the whole thing. A few great lines from her: Momma, is the baby going back into your tummy now that we are at the hospital?... Daddy, the car is broken into lots of pieces. Momma did it.... The fairies (angels) kept us safe while the car was spinning, and they were giggling in my ear!

The baby was his normal happy/adorable self, smiling at the nurses and doctor. He didn't even get upset when he filled his diaper at the hospital! He is such a good baby.

As I told my mother-in-law last night, the fact that our car was only hit by one other vehicle, and that there were only 2 vehicles involved is such a miracle! I kind of felt like our car was like the Knight Bus in the third Harry Potter movie- squeezing through tiny spaces between cars:) I mean, being able to walk away from a crash that happened at 60+ mph is really a miracle!


I am so thankful; for the peace and clarity of mind that enveloped me during and after the crash, for the car seats that helped keep the kids safe, for the motorists who stopped to help us, the highway patrol and state trooper who moved things along quickly, the medics and hospital staff who took care of me and entertained the kids, my husband who (once awake) acted quickly and made sure I was as comfortable as possible on the ride home, my in-laws who are helping with the kids and taking care of me this weekend while John works, the insurance company who has been quick in responding and even offered to tow the car to my hometown at no extra cost, and for the prayers and support from friends and family via email, phone/text, and Facebook. But mostly to my sweet Savior who not only saved me eternally, but who sent Angels to keep the kids and I safe.

(Speaking of eternal... I was texting my mom that I had a "sternal fracture." My iPhone autocorrected to "eternal fracture." Um, no thanks!)

Tuesday, February 22, 2011

Spring, you tease you!


Remains of a snowman


I was pointing out the buds to Anna, and she thought I was saying "butts." Classic.

Can you find the nest?

Baby pine cones
Rosebush by the front of my house. I tell you what, roses are hardy! I can't believe that thing survived! I kind of thought I killed it last fall.

More baby pine cones. Doesn't this look like something that could be under water?

Daffodils in my side yard


In 5 days we went from a beautiful springy 70 degree day, to 4 inches of snow. Spring is a tease.

70s in February

Last Friday the weather was fantastic, and I was able to take several walks. Here are some pictures taken with my iPhone. I'm not a great artist, but these made me happy:)

Tree in shadow

Love how the whole feeling of this tree changes by capturing more light. Also, I would like to climb this tree.

See the buds?



What makes bark do this?


WIA&D 2/15-2/21

2/15/11 (-780 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal - 150 cal
  • Coffee with FF cream/Splenda- 50 cal
Lunch
  • Salad- 130 cal
  • Red Beans and Rice- 300 cal
Snack
  • Chocolate Rice Cakes- 120 cal
Dinner
  • Baked Oatmeal- 275 cal
  • Skim milk- 90 cal
  • Banana-100 cal
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
  • Apple- 75 cal
  • Peanut Butter- 95 cal
What I Did
  • Breathe. And that kind of thing. (-1500 cal)
  • Lactate. Repeatedly. (-500 cal)
  • W3D1 Couch to 5K, elliptical style (-345)
2/16/11 (-760 cal)
Breakfast
  • The baby was sick and Abigail had a 7am appointment
  • I didn't eat
  • But I did have coffee
  • Coffee with FF half and half and Splenda- 40 cal
Lunch
  • Salad with beans, feta, hummus- 350 cal
Snack
  • Banana- 100 cal
Dinner
  • Enchilada Stack- 275 cal
  • Sour Cream- 35 cal
  • Veg and dip- 75 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Baked Oatmeal- 275 cal
  • Milk- 90 cal
  • Veg and Hummus-200
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
What I Did
  • Breathe. And that kind of thing. (-1500 cal)
  • Lactate. Repeatedly. (-500 cal)
  • 55 minutes Vigorous Yoga (-275 cal)
  • 30 min walk (-100 cal)
2/17/11 (-600 cal)
Breakfast
  • Banana- 100 cal
  • Coffee with FF half and half and Splenda- 30 cal
  • Yogurt- 170 cal
Lunch
  • Salad with beans, feta, and hummus- 300 cal
Snack
  • None. :(
Dinner
  • Mashed Potatoes- 215 cal
  • Turkey Meat Loaf (1.5 servings)- 415 cal
  • I planned to eat a salad and veg
  • But I didn't.
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
  • Cinnamon Toast- 100 cal
  • Cucumbers and Hummus- 90 cal
What I Did
  • Breathe. And that kind of thing. (-1500 cal)
  • Lactate. Repeatedly. (-500 cal)
  • 30 min walk (-100 cal)
  • We planned to do W3D2 of C5K, but we were too sore from the yoga. That was really intense yoga.
2/18/11 (-795 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal- 150 cal
  • Coffee with Splenda and FF half and half- 30 cal
Lunch
  • Ham Sammy with mustard- 180 cal
  • Salad with balsamic vinaigrette- 100 cal
Snack
  • Chocolate rice cakes- 60 cal
  • Cucumbers and Hummus- 100 cal
Dinner
  • Mashed Potatoes- 215 cal
  • Turkey Meat Loaf- 275 cal
  • Tomatoes with balsamic vinaigrette- 100 cal
  • A few slices of Pear- 25 cal
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
  • Cinnamon Toast- 100 cal
  • Whipped Cream- 90 cal
What I Did
  • Breathe. And that kind of thing. (-1500 cal)
  • Lactate. Repeatedly. (-500 cal)
  • Two 30-min walks (-200 cal)
  • One 60-min walk (-200 cal)
2/19/11 (-290 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal- 150 cal
  • Coffee with FF half and half and Splenda- 40 cal
Snack
  • Pear- 100 cal
Late Lunch
  • Tacos - 600 cal
Dinner
  • Salad- 80 cal
Late Night Snack
  • I'll admit, there was some emotional eating going on
  • King Size HSDCCB- 320 cal
  • White Cheddar Popcorn- 300 cal
  • Beef Jerky- 120 cal
What I Did
  • Breathe. And that kind of thing. (-1500 cal)
  • Lactate. Repeatedly. (-500 cal)
  • We were out of town
  • When we got to the gym up there
  • It was closed. So we didn't work out. :(
2/20/11 (-230 cal)

Breakfast
  • Banana- 100 cal
Lunch
  • We went to a buffet (still out of town)
  • It wasn't pretty
  • I tried to eat just salad and fish
  • But then I "tasted" a lot of things
  • And they were all central PA foods
  • So, I'm saying- 1100 cal
Dinner
  • I wasn't hungry
  • But I did have a skim milk latte- 90 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Still not super hungry
  • Half a pear- 50 cal
  • Indian food from a packet (John is a bad influence)- 250 cal
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal

What I Did
  • Breathe. And that kind of thing. (-1500 cal)
  • Lactate. Repeatedly. (-500 cal)
  • We were still out of town
  • So we didn't do anything else :(
2/21/11 (-380 cal)

Breakfast
  • Oatmeal- 150 cal
  • Coffee with FF half and half and Splenda- 40 cal
Lunch
  • 1/2 Pizza Burger with red sauce- 250 cal
  • Baked Oatmeal with Skim milk- 300 cal
Snack
  • None:(
Dinner
  • Salad- 125 cal
  • Salsa Soup- 200 cal
  • Tortilla with guacamole- 210 cal
  • Bite of quesadilla- 75 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Cucumbers and Hummus- 90 cal
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal

Weekly Calorie Deficit: 3835
Weekly Weight Loss: 1.8 lbs
Net Weight Loss: 11 lbs (20% of goal) (44 lbs to go!)

Insights: I started out strong, but then the stress hit (offers and counter offers and counter-counter offers on homes. And trying to figure out how to get this house on the market. Etc.) We also got really busy (and sore after yoga!) and the workouts stopped. The nice weather on Friday lent itself to several walks and great calorie burning. But the cold, biting wind stopped that (come back, spring!) I knew being out of town for the weekend would make the weekend hard, but by far, eating at the buffet was the hardest. Overall, I think I did well with my choices at the buffet, because I left both full and having tasted all the yummy stuff I wanted, but not eaten 3 days worth of calories the way I would have in the past.

Next Week's Goals: More exercise! I am going to try to take a walk every day that we don't do Cto5K, even if it's just on the treadmill (and with a possible snow day Tuesday, it might only be on the treadmill one way or the other:) I also need to figure out how to keep myself well-stocked on salads and other fresh veg, without breaking the bank or going to the store every day.

Friday, February 18, 2011

Babywise, Revisited

John Andrew turned 4 months old yesterday. How is that possible? He, like all children, is growing up way too fast. At his doctor’s appointment earlier this week, he weighed in at 16 pounds and measured at 26 inches. He’s a big guy. And he is, generally, a very happy and content baby. When he is upset, he is pretty easy to pacify (except for when he has gas- then the only thing that makes him happy is getting rid of that gas, which sometimes takes a while. Poor guy.)


I'm not sure if I had mentioned before that we were planning to Babywise. Babywise, if you are not familiar, addresses essentially two components of infant-rearing: feeding and sleeping. For feeding, they suggest the term “Parent-Directed Feeding” (PDF) and suggest that parent’s help babies establish a schedule of eat-play-sleep-repeat. The number of hours between the start of an eat-play-sleep cycle and the start of the next eat-play-sleep cycle will vary depending on the age of the child and the child’s appetite. This method also relies on parents not offering breast/bottle for comfort, but rather when a baby cries, parents figure out the cause (hunger? tired? yucky diaper? gas? comfort?) and act on the cause of the crying rather than just offering the breast/bottle for comfort. Once your baby is on a schedule, crying at non-feeding times should rarely be from hunger, but if it is, of course, you feed your baby.

The sleep component does address and suggest some CIO (cry it out) but depends more heavily on training your child to fall asleep unassisted… basically, you should put your baby to bed drowsy, but not asleep, and allow them to fall asleep without being rocked, held, or whatnot. If baby cries or fusses, they should be allowed to cry or fuss for a while until they “work it out of their system,” and parents should not rush in to hold the baby, but give them the opportunity to calm themselves and fall asleep/fall back asleep. If the fussing/crying continues for extended periods (and they give some examples of what an “extended period” might be), then you do go in and comfort the baby, but try to do so without picking them up- perhaps by “shushing” or patting their belly/back or whatnot.

So, we followed the schedule in the book, feeding on-demand the first 2 weeks, then naturally shifting to a 3 hour eat-play-sleep cycle; at 6 weeks old he was going 6 hours between his last cycle of the day and his first cycle of the next day, affording me about 5 hours of sleep. That was awesome, and happened much earlier than Abigail, who I introduced to Babywise at age 8 weeks. The little dude didn’t do much fussing at first, and since he usually fell asleep unassisted (and often, despite my efforts to keep him awake) we didn’t have a lot of “sleep training” to do. Eventually, however, he did begin staying awake longer, and waking up before I was ready for him to eat.

Let me begin by saying that the PDF component and the eat-play-sleep cycle worked very well for us. My little guy is gaining weight, and so big that I can hardly nurse him sitting up, because my back and arms hurt from holding him up! I have no issues with the scheduling component. I also feel that I really know my baby well, and can tell by the different cries what is wrong; more often than not, when my guy fusses it’s because he needs to burp or has gas. He has recently started a low-grade fussing when he wants attention or is lonely; if I leave the room when he wants me with him, he will let me know (the solution has been to bring him with me into the kitchen or wherever, using a Bumbo or saucer or whatever.) There have been a few times that I couldn’t figure out what his crying was all about, and even offering the breast did not help. And there have been a few times when it was not at all near a scheduled feeding time when I felt he was crying from hunger, and I fed him, and he became the happy and content baby he usually is. There have also been times (particularly when sick or after getting shots) when he has just been fussy, and nothing I would do would help- I couldn’t make him feel better.

So PDF works well for us, but where we struggle is with sleep training. Our struggles have been two-fold. First, when the baby cries, it affects me. Not just physically in a letdown reflex, but emotionally and mentally. It’s hard for me to concentrate. I become emotional. Even if I know there is nothing I can do to make him feel better, I still feel compelled to try. I believe God designed infants to cry in such a way that we are naturally inclined to respond to it, and I think that definitely happens when my guy cries. However, with sleep training, I was doing pretty well letting him fuss to fall asleep. I would set a timer in the kitchen and tell myself that I would let him fuss as until the timer went off, and until then I would do dishes or fold laundry or whatever. This was going okay- not fantastic, as it added a whole dimension of stress to my life, but relatively okay. He was learning to fall asleep by himself, was easily comforted when I went in, and was still a happy and content baby otherwise.

But the second dimension of sleep-training struggles was not about me… it was about our family, particularly Anna’s response to the baby crying. It really upsets her. She can’t stand it. On more than one occasion, if she heard the baby crying in the middle of the night, she would get up and tell me to make him stop crying. If he cried in the car or while I was fixing dinner, she would insist I make him stop, and stand over him (or sit next to him) and tell him repeatedly that he has to stop crying, shoving his pacifier into his mouth every time it was opened. When he cried, it was difficult on her. Is this because of her age? Because of grief, loss, and bonding issues related to adoption? Because she has extra-sensitive ears? I don’t know. But what I do know is this: letting the baby cry it out was not working for our family.

I have come to believe that in parenting, you have to make the choices that are right for your family as a whole. That’s why attachment parenting wouldn’t work for our family. But that’s also why we no longer “sleep train” our baby. Sure, we still try to lay him down awake, and we do still try comforting him without picking him up during sleep times. And often, that does work. But we don’t let him CIO overnight. We make an effort to comfort him every time he cries. Sometimes, we are unsuccessful. But we make the effort. Because that makes Anna feel better. And it makes me feel better. And most of the time, it does make the baby feel better. And mostly, because it works for our family.

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

How to make your kids beg for Tuna.

My kids have maintained for quite some time that they don't like tuna. Not tuna salad, not tuna-noodle casserole, not tuna and crackers.

But I found a way to serve tuna that makes them beg for more.

And it's simple. In fact, you could probably make this for dinner tonight.

Tuna Tacos

Ingredients
  • 2 (6 oz.) cans tuna or albacore in water
  • Your normal taco seasoning stuff (seasoning packet, onions, whatever)
  • water
Directions

Drain tuna and separate slightly with fork. Place into skillet with taco seasonings and at least 1/4 c. water. Cook until water is gone and tuna is the consistency of your "regular" taco filling (some like it dry, some like it a little saucier.)

Easy-peasy!

I have a feeling this could be done with fresh fish as well- using a boneless/skinless fillet of a mild fish (talapia or something) and cooking with taco seasoning, flaking apart into chunks as it cooked. I will try that soon and let you know:)

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

WIA&D 2/8-2/14

2/8/11 (-697 cal)
Breakfast
  • Cereal with Splenda- 165 cal
  • Milk- 90 cal
  • Coffee with creamer and Splenda- 40 cal
Lunch
  • Modified Southwest Chicken Salsa Soup- 180 cal
  • Edamame- 100 cal
Snack
  • Broccoli, Hummus, and Feta Salad- 100 cal
Dinner
  • Dinner for Dollars at Isaac's!
  • Black Heron (no mayo, with yellow mustard)- 498 cal
  • Salad with Honey Dijon Dressing- 100 cal
  • Red Potato Salad (mmmm!)- 195 cal
  • Pickle Mix- 25 cal
  • Diet Coke- 0 cal
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that.  (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
  • Couch to 5K, Week 2 Day 1, Elliptical Style (-370 cal)
2/9/11 (- 385 cal)
Breakfast
  • I didn't feel good so I didn't eat. 
  • I fed the baby and got the girls off to school. 
  • And then I went back to bed.
Lunch
  • MSCSS- 180 cal
  • Hummus Sammy- 180 cal
Snack
  • String Cheese- 60 cal
  • Coffee- 60 cal
Dinner
  • Italian Sausage and Onions- 430 cal
  • Pasta with red sauce- 425
  • I didn't eat anything else. No fruit or veg.
  • It was delish. Totally worth the calories.
  • And my hubby cooked it all!
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
  • Kettle Corn- 100 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that.  (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
  • Planks (Owww! My poor core!)
2/10/11 (-675 cal)
Breakfast
  • Coffee with Splenda and FF creamer- 50 cal
  • Barley with Splenda- 190
Lunch
  • Italian Sausage and Red Sauce- 360 cal
  • Rice- 170 cal
  • Apple- 40 cal
  • Steamed Broccoli- 30 cal
Snack
  • Didn't have one. No time!
Dinner
  • Toasted Cheese Sammy- 310 cal
  • Veg and FF Ranch Dip- 75 cal
After Workout Snack
  • Steamed Cauliflower- 35 cal
  • Skim Milk- 90 cal
Late Night Snack

  • Tea with Splenda- 0 cal
  • 2 Eggs- 160 cal (I was hungry!)
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal

What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that.  (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
  • W2D2 Couch to 5K, elliptical style- (-365 cal)
2/11/11 (-685 cal)
Breakfast
  • Coffee with Splenda/FF creamer- 100 cal
  • Cinnamon Toast- 140 cal
Lunch
  • Red Beans and Rice- 330 cal
  • Cauliflower- 30 cal
Snack

  • String Cheese- 60 cal
Dinner
  • Ham Sammy with Mustard- 180 cal
  • Yogurt- 170 cal
After Work Out Snack (MEAL:)
Late Night Snack
  • Half a sugar cookie- 90 cal
  • HSDCCB-180 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that.  (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
  • W2D3 Couch to 5K, elliptical style (-365 cal)
  • Work. For 4 hours. Does stress burn calories?
2/12/11 (-365 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal with Splenda- 150 cal
  • Coffee with FF creamer/Splenda- 50 cal
Lunch
  • Ham Sammy with mustard- 180 cal
  • Apple- 75 cal
  • String cheese- 60 cal
Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal (I know. It's that time of month.)
  • Rice Cakes- 120 cal
Dinner
  • Egg- 140 cal
  • Turkey Bacon (lots of it! that time of month!)- 300 cal
  • Pancake with light whipped cream- 100 cal
  • Decaf with FF creamer/splenda- 100 cal
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal (I know. It's that time of month.)

What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that. (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
2/13/11 (-545 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal with Splenda- 150 cal
  • Coffee with FF cream/splenda- 50 cal
Lunch
  • McDonald's hamburger- 250 cal
Snack
  • Banana- 100 cal
Dinner
  • Chicken- 250 cal
  • Salad- 100 cal
  • Mashed Potatoes- 215 cal
  • Kiwi- 60 cal
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal (I know, I know. Ya know?)
  • Cucumbers and Hummus- 170 cal

What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that. (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
  • Grocery Shopping. Like, for 3 hours. With all 3 kids. On a Sunday afternoon. What was I thinking? (-250 cal)*

*I would like to point out that I also went shopping while hungry, on sample day at Sam's, and I still stuck to the list! AND only gave in to one sample, and even that was the fish, not anything else:)

2/14/11 (-555 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal- 150 cal
  • Coffee with Splenda/FF creamer- 50 cal
Lunch
  • Salad/Cucumbers- 20 cal
  • Chicken- 130 cal
  • Hummus- 160 cal
  • Feta- 90 cal
Snack
  • Banana- 90 cal
  • String Cheese- 60 cal
Dinner
  • Tacos- 365 cal
  • Salad- 170 cal
Late Night Snack
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
  • Popcorn- 100 cal
  • Tea- 0 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And things such as that. (-1500 cal)
  • Produce Nectar of the gods. Or of the babe. (-500 cal)
  • 30 minute walk, pushing stroller (-120 cal)
  • Planks. They still suck.
Weekly Calorie Defecit: 3907
Weekly Weight Loss: 4 lbs (WHAT!?!?)
Net Weight Loss: 9.2 lbs (16.7% of goal) (45.8 lbs to go!)

Last Week's Goals: I think I was doing well with meeting my -500 calorie goal, except for then I got all hormonal. And had a few bad days. Overall, I think I still did well, but not as good as I could have done. I need to come up with a better plan for next month. As for calorie suckers, I found out that powdered creamer has about the same number of calories as FF creamer. Need to check if FF half and half has fewer or the same calories- if so, I might be able to use less and still have the same "creamy" taste in my coffee. I need to find a good substitute for butter. Hmm. I did okay on my calcium, until the PMS hit:( But trying to remember that foods like broccoli are very rich in calcium, and I don't have to have dairy to get my calcium!

Weekly Insights: Hormones = much harder to diet. I need a plan for next month. I also need to figure out how to get to the gym on days when I am not working out with John (now that my knee is feeling better.) Planks are hard. Still. But the Couch to 5K is going much better; I already feel stronger and no longer get totally out of breath during the "job/sprints."

I was totally shocked when the scale reported a loss of 4 lbs. John and I were both shocked, actually, because he also lost 4 pounds! (yea us!) We were so shocked that we re-weighed to confirm the readings:)

Friday, February 11, 2011

Manners Day




She wanted a picture of her super-cool hair do.





Manners Day today! Abigail was soooo excited and has been planning what she would wear since last week! She looks so grown up in some of these pictures- hard to believe she is only 8.

She has matured into such a great young lady- intelligent, kind, loving, helpful, patient, and funny. She is the perfect big sister. And she's beautiful, too!

It's all relative


I never fail to be amazed at how little John Andrew can make Anna look. He is 4 months old next week. She is 4 in April. And within a year or 2, I'm fairly certain they will be about the same size!

Hat Day! (Motherhood FAIL!)










I thought it was "Hat Day" at pre-school today. So Anna got dressed up in all her cowgirl goodness.

And we got to school and found out it was "Heart Day."

Motherhood FAIL.

But she sure is one cute lil' lady!

Thursday, February 10, 2011

Free Audiobook!

Right now you can download Adopted for Life by Russel D. Moore, one of my want-to-read books, for free!

Check it out here!

Tuesday, February 08, 2011

WIA&D 2/1-2/7

2/1/11 (-650 cal)
Breakfast
  • Coffee with FF creamer and Splenda- 50 cal
  • Bulgur with Splenda- 150 cal
Lunch
  • Ham Sammy with Dijon Mustard- 185 cal
  • Apple- 90 cal
  • Cream of Asparagus Soup- 60 cal
  • 1 C. skim milk- 90 cal
Snack
  • Teryiaki Beef Jerky- 80 cal
Dinner
  • Parmesan Talapia***155 cal
  • Jasmine Rice- 170 cal
  • Salad with dressing- 140cal
  • Cucumber- 10 cal
After Work Out Snack
  • Hummus- 80 cal
  • Cucumbers- 10 cal
  • 1 C. skim milk- 90 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Hershey's Special Dark candy bar- 180 cal
  • Glass of Wine- 75 cal
What  Did
  • Live. And stuff. (-1500 cal)
  • Feed my baby.  (-500 cal)
  • Week 1 Day 1 Couch to 5K   (-265 cal)
***I used this recipe for Parmesan Talapia in foil packets. I split the cheese "sauce" between 6 talapia filets, which was about 100 calories of sauce per filet. I then weighed the filets to figure out how many calories were in each filet (4 oz. raw talapia= 100 calories.) I marked the combined calories on the outside of the foil packet before cooking so that I would know how many calories John and I were eating, regardless of what size filet we got.

2/2/11 (-343 cal)

Breakfast
  • Oatmeal- 150 cal
  • Homemade Hot Chocolate- 92 cal
Lunch
  • Hummus Sammy- 180 cal
  • Asparagus Soup- 60 cal
  • Parmesan Talapia- 165 cal
Snack
  • Beef Jerky- 80 cal
  • 1 C. skim milk- 90 cal
Dinner
  • "Mexican Spaghetti"- 335 cal
  • Salad with cheese and FF fiesta ranch dressing- 90 cal
Movie Snack
  • Popcorn- 160 cal
  • Hummus with cucumbers- 175
Late Night Snack
  • Hershey's Special Dark candy bar- 180 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And stuff. (-1500 cal)
  • Feed my baby. (-500 cal)
  • Carry baby in sling while walking in house (-100 cal)
2/3/11 (-750 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal with Splenda- 150 cal
  • Coffee with cream and Splenda- 100 cal
Lunch
  • Asparagus Soup- 60 cal
  • Parmesan Talapia- 175 cal
Snack
  • 1 C. skim milk- 90 cal
  • Chocolate Rice Cakes- 60 cal
Dinner
  • Salmon Burger- 195 cal
  • Yogurt-Lemon-Basil Sauce- 15 cal
  • Greek Salad- 200 cal
After Work Out Snack
  • Frozen GoGurt- 80 cal
  • Hummus with Pita Chips- 210 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Bar- 180 cal

What I Did
  • Live. And stuff. (-1500 cal)
  • Feed my baby. (-500 cal)
  • Week 1 Day 2 Couch to 5K (-265 cal)
2/4/11 (-685 cal)
Brunch (I got to sleep in!)
  • Oatmeal- 150 cal
  • Diet Coke- 0 cal
Late Lunch
  • Salmon Patty- 195 cal
  • Yogurt-Lemon-Basil Sauce- 15 cal
  • Edamame- 150 cal
Snack
  • Chocolate rice cakes- 60 cal
Dinner
  • Vietnameese Chicken (I omitted the oil from this recipe)- 145 cal
  • Jasmine Rice- 170 cal
  • Broccoli- 30 cal
  • Crockpot S'mores- 400 cal
Late Night Snack
  • I didn't eat one! I meant to, but I forgot.
What I Did
  • Live. And stuff. (-1500 cal)
  • Feed my baby. (-500 cal)
  • Planks. This was embarrassing. And torturous. And I have no idea how many calories it burned (but that's not why I did them, anyway.
2/5/11 (-440 cal)
Breakfast
  • Oatmeal with Splenda- 150 cal
  • Coffee with FF creamer and Splenda- 40 cal
Lunch
  • McDonald's Grilled Chicken Cesear Salad- 410 cal
  • Caf-free Diet Coke- 0 cal
Snack
Dinner
  • Meatballs in Peanut Butter Sauce- 230 cal
  • Jasmine Rice- 170 cal
  • Apple Slices- 40 cal
  • Salad with Blue Cheese/Crasins/BC Dressing- 480 cal

Late Night Snack
  • Blush Wine- 75 cal
  • Hershey's Special Dark Chocolate Bar- 180 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And stuff. (-1500 cal)
  • Feed my baby. (-500 cal)
  • Week 1 Day 3 of Couch to 5K. Except, on the elliptical. Because I have bursitis in my right knee. And my doctor/husband said I was not allowed on the treadmill. But I burned more calories this way. And my kneed didn't hurt so bad that I couldn't make it from the car to the house. So yea! (-325)
2/6/11 (-290 cal)
Breakfast
  • Cereal with Splenda and 1/2 C.skim milk- 210 cal
  • Coffee with FF creamer and Splenda- 50 cal
Lunch
  • My hubby cooked. It was great!
  • Turkey Burger- 160 cal
  • Hummus and Carmelized Onions- 50 cal
  • Bed of Greens- 10 cal
  • Feta Cheese Crumbles- 90 cal
  • Diet Coke- 0 cal
No Snack!

Dinner
  • Friendly's Caprese Chicken Sammy and Salad- 550 cal
  • No Guilt FroYo Sundae- 250 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Chips and Guacamole- 150 cal
  • Cucumber Slices- 10 cal
  • Hershey's SDCB- 180 cal
What I Did
  • Live. And stuff. (-1500 cal)
  • Feed my baby. (-500 cal)
  • Planks. My entire core now hurts.
2/7/11 (-512 cal)

Breakfast
  • Oatmeal with Splenda- 150 cal
  • Coffee with Splenda and creamer- 100 cal
Lunch
  • Meatballs in Peanut Butter Sauce- 230 cal
  • Jasmine Rice- 170 cal
  • Edamame- 50 cal
Snack
  • Apple- 40 cal
Dinner
  • Southwest Black Bean and Salsa Chicken Soup (modified)- 268 cal
  • Broccoli- 30 cal
  • Skim milk- 90 cal
Late Night Snack
  • Pita and hummus- 180 cal
  • HSDCCB- 180 cal
    Weekly Calorie Deficit: 3020 calories
    Weekly Weigh-In: -2.4 lbs (4% of goal)
    Net Weight Loss: 5.2 lbs (9.5% goal)

    Weekly Insights: Working out with John has been great- he's been so careful of me not over-doing it, and because of that, I still feel good (sore, but good) after our workouts. He's also pushing me to develop my core strength to help protect myself as I venture into other workouts (once he gives the okay.) Not quite the same thing as a personal trainer, but I do get to make out with him whenever I want! Having him on-board with the calorie restriction is so awesome, too (even though he gets way more calories than I do each day.) I feel like the changes I am making are sustainable (more fruits/veggies, lean meats, whole grains, and alternative protiens like beans/rice.) I also think that writing everything down is really helping me be aware of my choices, in terms of not over-eating as well as making sure I am eating a variety of nutritious foods.

    Eating the candy bar each night is a mental thing for me... while I eat enough food that I no longer feel "hungry" except at meal times, feeling like I can indulge every night is really helping me feel like I am making lifestyle choices, not "dieting." And in light of the whole twinkie diet thing, I don't feel a bit bad about doing it. My doctor (hubs) says it's fine, and since I eat very low-fat foods the rest of my day, it is probably a good thing to throw a little more fat into my diet at bedtime so that I don't wake up hungry.

    I fully expect that this will get harder (not losing as much weight per week) once I get to the half way mark. I also, at some point, will probably cut back on breastfeeding (or at least start adding solid foods, which may decrease calorie utilization for breast milk.) So I want to stay on the wagon and work at it as much as I can now... and plan to increase my activity once my knee feels better (stupid bursitis.)

    Goals for next week:
    • Plan daily meals better to consisitently meet -500 cal./day goal.
    • Find better substitute for common calorie suckers (like a lower-calorie substitute for the creamer in my coffee.)
    • Maintain calcium intake with at least 3 servings of calcium-rich foods per day.

    Monday, February 07, 2011

    Super Ninja Girls Makeover!

    What happens when the "Super Ninja Girls" tackle Daddy and insist on a "make over?"





    You can see they tied him up, so he couldn't escape from their torture indulgence.
    




    The Final Product:

    "Daddy, you look pretty!"
    But they believed they could improve upon their work....

    Happy camper, Daddy?

     And finally, they created a masterpiece:

    Abigail: Daddy, you look beautiful!
    Anna: No, Daddy, you just look FUNNY!

    Then they gave Momma the "spa treatment"


    Even did her fingernails! (3 different layers, each a different color!)

    And, of course, Momma and Daddy got pedicures:)

    The Super Ninja Girls will be opening a day spa soon... call for reservations!
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