Saturday, February 25, 2012

Final Results for the 21 Day Challenge!

Alrighty, for those of you who have been following me, I have begun my weight loss journey!  My goals in the beginning of February were to lose 7lbs by the end of the challenge!  I feel so excited to tell you that I lost a total of 9lbs!  I exceeded my goal!

I am feeling so much more confident that "I Can" accomplish what I set my mind towards.  I am feeling more energetic and inclined to be out and about rather than sit down on the couch and eating myself into a couch potato. 

I think I have hit a little bit of a plateau though.  With my workouts I no longer feel sore and have stayed at a constant 167 lbs.  So now I feel like I need to up my exercise routine by increasing the difficulty of my work out with heavier more challenging weights.  I am excited to push through to become a more healthier and stronger me.

You can check out more information on the program I am doing from Dustin Maher at
He is engaging, and his book is filled with helpful insights on the "whys" and "how" of exercising and eating healthy.  We are looking for more mom bloggers to join up for the next 21 day challenge starting March 1st!  Let me know if you want to join in--contact me! :)  I have received Dustin's Ebook and have been working out with his fit moms for life work out program.  I have received it free for the purpose of this challenge and for the review!

Okay My husband has been working late for the past few days,so tonight I am hoping to update this post with my before and after pictures!

Here are my before and after measurements:
Arms:  14 inches----13inches
Hips:  41 inches--40 inches
Waist: 38 inches--36 inches
Abdomen: 43.5 inches--40 inches
Thighs: 23 inches--23 inches
Chest:  42 inches--39 inches
Calves: 14 inches--14 1/2 inches

Height: 5' 2 inches--5'2 inches

Weight: 176.6 lbs--166-167 lbs!

Friday, February 24, 2012

Babee Greens 55% Hemp/45% Organic Cotton Fitted Diaper Review

About Babee Greens:  Now one of my favorite things about Babee Greens is that it is a USA company with moms working at the heart of it in North Carolina.  With real moms at the helm of this diaper company, I know that they understand what babies need as well as know what I want as a momma out of a cloth diaper.  In a sense I feel more comfortable knowing what kind of people are behind the business.   I also like knowing that their organic material grown and milled in the US--which makes their organic cloth diapers  100%  USA made.  I have to admit that I have a huge soft spot for supporting USA companies because purchases made not only support hard working Moms, but also us as a nation. 

My first impression: Softness, Fit and Dry time
I love the softness of this fitted cloth diaper.  This Fitted Cloth diaper is a blend of cotton and  hemp.  I can really see the difference a cotton blend makes.  It makes a very soft, thick, and truly absorbent diaper.  After prepping the diaper, I made a few observations.   In the dyer, I will need to make use of my wool dryer balls.  The hemp is a fairly thick fiber and I think it needs some extra help in drying and softening up.  Secondly I do line dry my diapers occasionally if weather permits, and find that it does take longer to dry than microfiber or bamboo hemp.  Good things are worth waiting for right?

As for the fit,  I put my 24lb daughter in it and really was surprised that it truly can fit her without being too tight or hard to snap on.   I have had a lot of trouble with one size diapers being on the small side for my daughter.  She has a big belly and somewhat chunky legs!  With growth spurts going up and down, I was thankful that I found a good adjustment with the snaps and the leg gussets were perfect.  (As a fitted diaper, I do not expect leg gussets to “HUG” the legs for a tight fit, just merely wrap lightly around her legs.)   With this Babee green fitted cloth diaper, I had no trouble in the rise being too short.  She did not have any leaks coming from the top of the diaper or the back.  Often times diapers are too low that for some reason the belly part of her shirt gets wet.  Lastly with fit, this diaper has a nice length to the “wings”.  I can still get the snaps to snap in the middle and across on top of eachother.  I feel it offers more of a secure fit, and also extra absorbency in the front and along the sides of the diaper. 

Favorite Aspects of the Fitted Diaper:  The Insert, Absorbency and Trimmness
What I liked about this diaper was the placement of where to snap the insert in.  Instead of snapping in the back of the diaper, it snaps in the front.  This I thought was nice because she is a heavy wetter at night, and with the snaps in the front there is no fear of the insert shifting from side to side as she is an active runner/walker kind of toddler.   For my toddler the insert was needed.  I did let her run around in the fitted diaper alone during the day for maybe about 2 hours and found that the diaper was great at absorbing. 

As a night time diaper, I am very happy to find that this is a good reliable diaper.  The cotton and hemp blend really absorbs everything.  I find that the whole diaper is throughly used yet her crib sheets are dry.  During the daytime, this trim diaper works great.  I am confident enough in letting her run around in some leggings and a shirt and no diaper cover for an hour  or two. 

The trimmnes of the diaper in relation to how much it can absorb is truly amazing!  In short, I love that I can fit all of our diaper covers and wool covers over this fitted diaper.  We have flip diaper covers and some upcycled wool covers that we usually use over our Babee Greens Fitted Diaper. Also by being on the go I like that the fitted diaper is not too bulky for travel.

Overall I highly recommend this Babee Greens Organic Cotton and Hemp Organic diaper.  On the price scale it is on the top end, but when considering the quality of materials and construction of the diaper, I say that it will be worth saving up for one in the long end.  I feel like this fitted diaper will last me maybe 2 children cycles or more.  The cotton- hemp blend makes this hemp diaper truly makes a difference in matter of absorbency and that is why It is one of my favorite diapers in my stash, and one I tend to pack for traveling days and use as a night time diaper.

Rating on a 5 point scale:


Learn more about Babee Greens through their website and blog!
Connect with Babee Greens on Facebook
Tweet and follow Babee Greens via Twitter

Disclaimer: I received a Fitted diaper for the purpose of this review.  The opinions and the review is all my original thoughts.  I have not been compensated in anyother way.

Friday, February 17, 2012

21 Day Weight Loss Challenge: Day 17

Yay!  Got my exercise in today!  I started with Dynamic Warm ups and then moved into Cardio and Core Training.  I feel a bit pressed for time, so I am splitting up the work out so I can still have time for my family.  I also like working out everyday.  It gives me some boost of energy, and accomplishment.  With only a couple more days left to this challenge, I am excited and very eager to finish out this week strong!

Dustin's Weekly Challenge:  Tell someone you appreciate them!  Different person each day.  
 -- I am working on telling my husband how much I appreciate him this week.  Also others whom I really appreciate I am making thank you notes and making some phone calls! :)

The End is Coming!
Well...the end of this challenge that is!
Day 17 of this Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge.  I am fairly excited about finishing out strong in this weight loss challenge.  I embarked on this challenge and weight loss journey on February 1st, 2012 and am very glad to say that I have at least worked out 3 days out of the week and have begun to change  my eating habits.  A big part of Dustin's Fit Moms for Life program is Nutrition.  Exercising, Nutrition, Good mindset, and Environment all goes hand in hand in his program.  In this second week, I feel like I am beginning to see how Nutrition works.  I was sick for a few days, and really felt like it would be best to just rest, but continue to eat healthy and focus on Nutrition and eating the 3 Meals and 2 snacks a day.  I found myself shopping healthier options and planning out more vegetables and fruits into my meals.  I also felt good.  I did not cave into eating sweets and ultimately I think eating right helped me get over the sickness quicker! 

I find that eating for nutritional value is something someone must do intentionally and purposefully! 

Working to lose weight and gain a healthier body is not merely just a 21 day challenge for me, it is a life long change.  I have started to try Protein shakes to take the place of a daily meal.  Because of Dustin's Fit Moms for Life book, I kind of understand the importance of consuming and incorporating various foods into my diet.  Something like protein is detrimental for muscles to rebuild itself after working out.  Also good foods to eat after exercise are simple foods like fruits and vegetables!  I am finding myself trying somehow to incorporate a healthy does of green veggies into my meals.  Not only is this for my good, but for my family.  I know that I want my family to eat more healthy so...I find that I am cooking more meals at home rather than running through a drive thru!

Made for Someone like Me:
What I love about Dutin Maher's Fit Moms for Life program is that it is very realistic for me as a Real Mom.  One of those reasons is that he strives to make exercise short and sweet--after all Moms are Busy!  But in that time we do exercise he encourages us to challenge ourselves to work out intensely and to push ourselves.  Secondly, I really appreciate that he appeals to my mindset by educating me on the "WHYs" of Nutrition, Exercise, etc.  One of my favorite parts he talks about is exercise.  His program includes Cardio, Strength Training, and Core Training, and Flexibility Training.  As a young mom, I have no time to really do the research on what type of exercise to include in my work outs--and I am very grateful that Maher goes into details of the importance of each.  For example, Strength training is ideal for the woman because it not only tones our body but it increases bone density.  I had not known that!  And time and time again I hear about women dealing with bone density loss.  So I am very grateful for the invaluable knowledge and facts inundated throughout this book. 

Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life

Tuesday, February 14, 2012

21 Day Weight Loss Challenge: Day 14

Valentine's Day!

So luckily my husband did not bring me a bunch of chocolates!  But today was good:

8 Glasses of Water total
Breakfast: Eggs and Toast with Spinach and Red Onion and Bell Pepper
Snack: Piece of Whole Grain Toast with peanut butter
Lunch: 1/2 a Patrami Sandwich with Side of Raw Veggies
Snack: Apples, Oranges, Bananas
Dinner: Chicken Adobo and a big plate of Salad

Today was good, kind of wish I could have had all my sweets, but did not give in. 
What helped was that my husband knew I was in this challenge and we chose a beautiful place to eat that offered healthy choices. 

Sunday, February 12, 2012

21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge: Day 11

Today was good.  I did Weight Training, Cardio, and Core training today.  Nutrition is slipping a bit since we have been going out more, and hubby took me to the movies.  Ate some popped corn and drank a little bit of a sweet icee!  Minus points! :)  Ah well, just glad to have worked out today, and enjoyed a night with my husband. I've started just writing my food journals in a notebook.  It's just easier so I can spend more time elsewhere. :)

Below is a collection of other Mommy Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life 

Fit Moms for Life: Quick Check in for Day 12

Squeezed in a work out! I started just playing with my daughter, and it ended up getting me pumped up into working out. I started with Cardio (because I was jumping around with my daughter) and then did some Core training. She went to bed with daddy, and I started weight training. I pushed through the whole work out even though it was my off day. I will take it easy tomorrow...maybe...I am beginning to have a hate/love relationship with working out, but I do love it when I work out. It's the mindset that I am struggling with right now. I moved on to 10 lb weights and I think that the challenge is making me dread it inside.

All in all, I am glad to be exercising! I feel great and am getting results. Fitting into my clothes again is really nice.
Below is a collection of other Mommy Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge. Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life

Friday, February 10, 2012

21 Day Challenge: Weight Loss Challenge Day 10

Exercised today!  It was at the last minute too.  It was so hard to get my hour in today, because there seemed to be interruptions and I was needed as a wife and mom.  I drank hard today and got in 8 glasses.  I ate right, and was glad to take a break from cooking with a "lunch date" with my  husband, Andy.  It was relaxing.  I was able to sit down and enjoy life and food.  I was amazed that everything I ordered was really just the right amount of food.  Normally I felt like I ought to eat ALL that I can and order to make sure I am full, but this time I ordered what I wanted to eat.  I ordered Half a Sandwich with Fresh Veggies and a cup of soup.  I did not get to eat the soup--little one got it, but I got the rest.  I was satisfied and happy.  Took a bite of dessert too.  Packed the rest home, and was again satisfied and not craving more than a bite or two.

It's been a Week!
It has been about a week since I started this Fit Moms For Life Weight Loss Challenge.  My initial weight was 176.8lbs.  In the beginning I was hesitant to start anything, but knowing that if I commit myself to this 21 day challenge then I will be accountable to other women!  Here's more about the challenge-- and I'd love it if you emailed me if you are interested in joining up for the next challenge starting in March! 

So what do I have to say after a week? I am feeling good.  I feel healthier and my jeans do not feel so snug on me.  In short, I feel more alive.   The first couple of days of working out was hard.  I will not lie-I felt sore.  But it felt good to be sore.  It made me feel like I accomplished something that day. I believe that my perspective on who I am is changing.  Instead of "I can't" I do feel like "I can accomplish".  Even if it is just one day at a time, one push up at a time...inside I feel more confident. 

Beginning the Journey of Weight Loss is never easy.  For so long I never liked exercise.  Some of my reasons for not taking time out of my day to exercise was the fact that I felt uncomfortable.  I felt like it was too hard.  I know it's going to hurt!  But I have to encourage you that though exercise is not pleasant at gets better.  I did not like it at first, but committed myself each day to make right choices food wise, and then to take each exercise with a deep breath.  After a couple of days I found myself accomplishing little things like doing a push up, or holding a plank position.  You find yourself losing some inches here and there and for me my biggest amazement and amusement were my biceps!  I got biceps hiding in my arms!  I love it.  It drives me to do that last set of push ups....Anyways I just wanted to encourage you:  Beginning the Journey of Weight Loss is never easy, But is definitely worth it.  

I also wanted to add...that I really appreciate not being alone in this journey.  During this challenge I have been encouraged when I was discouraged.  I love hearing and reading about their journeys and stories and experiences.  It's been a good week.  I am enjoying this Weight Loss Journey :)  If you want to, remember shoot me an email, and next month you can gear up with other women and moms and take the first steps of your own journey!  But you will not be alone!

Food Log:
Breakfast: 2 Cage free Eggs and Blueberries
Snack: Apple, Blueberries, Banana
Lunch: 1/2 Reuben Sandwich on Rye with Raw Vegetables
Snack: Toast and Peanut butter
Dinner: Green Salad and Chicken

Below is a collection of other Mommy Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life 

Thursday, February 9, 2012

Bamboobies FREEBIES!

For a limited time, you can try BamBoobies Nursing pads for free.

Available for one week only for Valentine's Day - while supplies last!
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Thirty-One Days of Drawing Near To God: Resting Securely in His Delight: Book Review

 Thirty-One Days of Drawing Near To God: Resting Securely in His Delight by Ruth Myers

At first I was skeptical as to how this book would impact me.  I felt like this would be a typical 31 days of devotionals.  I found myself drawn deeper and deeper into the truth of 1.) Who we are in Christ and 2.) How God our Heavenly Father views us.

I really appreciate how Ruth draws from her own life experience and is very transparent and almost "face to face" to me as the reader.  She is very personal and that is something I was not expecting in a devotional book--I love it!  Her faith in God is not fake. Her faith and trust in the Word of God is seen as well.  I am encouraged by how deep her relationship is with God, and really hope that day by day I can draw closer to God until he comes. 

Ruth includes a lot of verses that are meaningful to her and with each day reveals Scripture that is relevant for that Chapter/Day.  She offers up a prayer and space at the end of the book to where we can write what verse sticks out and is meaningful to us that day. 

I really enjoy this book, and recommend it for those desiring a closer relationship, deeper and more intimate relationship with Him.

Disclaimer: I received this book for free from WaterBrook Multnomah Publishing Group for this review. 

21 Day Weight Loss Challenge: Day 9 Food!


I also took a picture of what I made my daughter. I love that her food doesn't look pale yellow all the time. Have you ever noticed that the easy bad foods like pancakes, waffles, crepes, fries, etc(CARBS) are pale yellow? I am finding that the more I prepare healthy food for myself the more color on our plates!  2 Cage free Eggs with 1/2 cup fresh blueberries with a pinch of Parmesan cheese.  Super yummy and filling!  My daughter tried to steal my blueberries. 

1/3 cup Apple, 1/3 cup Banana, and 1/3 cup orange slices (Dustin's recommended snacks in 1/3 cups)


2 Cups of shredded Napa Cabbage, 1/2 cup Lemon-pepper seasoned chicken, Orange slices, and Sesame dressing.  Today my husband came home from work because he sprained his ankle.  I made him this salad too.  He liked it!  He said it would be better with more chicken and oranges.

I don't know for some reason it was just half an apple, a slice of Whole grain bread and peanut butter, and a 2 spoonfuls of brown rice.  Sorry, I have not had rice in a LONG TIME and rice is usually my staple.  :)

Chinese Chicken in a Crockpot
It did not turn out that great. Ah well, we ate it with a lot of veggies! :)

I have to say that once I can grapple with the reason as to "why" I eat--I can have more control over my weight.  While cutting up some veggies and fruits for a salad yesterday and today the thought  popped in my head, "I'm eating this because it is nutritious and is what I need to have in my body."  It was not until today that I realized I just understood the difference between Eating to live or Living to eat!  Quite enlightening to me.  God created us not to live to eat, but to eat to live.  Yes we can enjoy food, but I'm finding that the joy of food can really cause us to go south.  So ladies and gents--are you Eating to Live or Living to Eat?

Cheat Meals and Wiggle Room.
On another note, reading Fit Moms For Life there is grace and the flexibility that I do appreciate.    I like Dustin he gives us "wiggle" room when it comes to food.  Meaning, once in a while it is okay to treat ourselves to something.  Indeed it is realistic dieting--because I know that I cannot deny myself some good delectable sweet treats.  Like that Superbowl day, I really wanted a cheesecake bar--I had it.  The next day I was back and ready to hit the weights and cardio.  To be honest I felt gross working out after eating some junk....I enjoyed it but I know that later I will pay for it.  I believe in Moderation--not Perfection.

There's Freedom in eating right.
After doing my shopping, I was a bit worried at how much it cost initially.  I still have not bought everything we need that was on the shopping list.  But you know what?  I find that I am eating about 5 times a day--feeding my family for about $150!  With the food we have bought, I can mix and match meals with some adjustments for the things we could not shop for.

Freedom.  When I portion out the amounts I need to eat, I feel freedom to eat without feeling guilty that maybe I am eating too much.  And what's more my husband is also unwittingly eating about the same portion as I am eating.  I feel satisfied after eating my meal and drinking water.  I'm loving it.

Fat, Sick, and Nearly Dead.
Tonight as a family we sat down and watched Fat Sick and Nearly Dead. I thought it was encouraging and wished I had a juicer!  This show really got my husband thinking too.  I thought it was enjoyable and amazing.  Have you ever watched it?  I love it, it's on Netflix if you guys have it! :)

Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life 


Cook'n Recipe Organizer Giveaway!

Often times, I find myself uninspired in the kitchen. I simply get overwhelmed! The thought of looking through my recipes can get a bit frustrating, because of my lack of organization. I end up cooking something like spaghetti 3 days out of the week simply because I found it too hard to plan out a meal or could not find a good recipe at the tip of my fingers. But I want to introduce you to the RECIPE SOFTWARE that has changed the way I keep my kitchen recipes. 

My favorite ways to get recipes:
The internet seems to be the easiest way to search for recipes. My problem though is that I get lost in cyberspace and often cannot find "that recipe I used last time". When I do get a print out of the internet copy it gets lost in my disorganized mess of recipes. Also maybe it is my bad habit, but I dislike recipes that do not have a straightforward order to I end up throwing the printed recipe out anyway because the pagelayout or print is not very eye pleasing!

Reasons why I love this Cook'n Recipe Software:

I am pretty skeptical when it comes to software, especially Recipe Software. I tend to feel that I "don't need" a software program to organize my recipe, but this Cook'n Software has really changed my mind!
  • The Capture Feature. The features are really more than I could imagine and very user friendly too. You know I love searching for recipes online, and this program actually has a built in feature to where one can search for recipes online, snag that recipe, and save it in the program. What is nice about Cook'n is that it converts it to a really nice easy to read layout. I LOVE the layout it has--very clean and includes the internet page the recipe was taken from. It is quite an intelligent program--it lays everything out for me in a spreadsheet just to make sure that I double check it, and then it comes out looking like this! I have captured quite a few recipes online already and was delighted that it even took the picture of the food right off the website without me having to do any extra steps!

  • Readily Available Recipes. Second thing I love about this program are the loaded recipes. There is nothing more disheartening than an empty recipe program where I have to input one byone my recipes. I am so glad that it comes with preloaded recipes that are good basic recipes that I know I will use. The Recipes are located along the left side bar and are organized by Courses--Appetizers, Desserts, Main Courses...etc. Whenever I need to be inspired to cook the next meal, I can easily browse through the selection. They have pictures on some of them too!

    On the Left side you have all the Recipes listed.  The Main page has an example of what an Internet search for a Recipes Looks like.
  • Menu Planning and Grocery List is easier than ever. I was very happy at the Menu Planning and Grocery list capabilities. I can drag and drop a recipe into the Menu Planning window. Automatically another part of the program records what items I need to purchase at the grocery store. I think it is very convenient that it lists every item I need for that week without me having to look through each individual recipe.

  • Nutritional Information. I am going through a Weight Loss challenge and I was pleasantly surprised at the Nutritional information it had!  When I was playing around with the Menu Planning and the Grocery list, I was very surprised to find information on the nutritional values of what I would buy.  Not only that but it gave me options for my grocery list as well as the approximate if not the price I was going to pay.  Things on my grocery list were priced!  I love that I could get an estimate of how much things cost at the store before getting into a store.
Can you think of anything else that you might imagine the perfect Recipe Organizer to do that would desire? ? Ever wonder how to adjust the ingredients to be sure to feed two extra guests at the table? Or maybe you are bringing a dish to church or a family get together and need a way bigger serving than what the recipe gives. Cook'n is right there ready to recalculate everything for you. I find this is one of the nicest thing anyone has thought of to incorporate for us cooks in the kitchen. It defintely makes life easier. Any time I could avoid doing math problems while in the kitchen is a plus. When you adjust the serving size, if you have a grocery list going, the list adjusts! Very intelligent is it not?
    How about Change the Serving sizeThese are just a mere taste of the different features of the program. Quite frankly, I am in love with it and cannot wait to fully utilize this Recipe Software to its fullest. I have been using it for a few weeks now, and really do enjoy the ease of the program and how I can easily find and input recipes. I cannot wait to tap its full potential such as creating our own family cook book or syncing to an Ipad or Iphone!

    Ultimately Cook'n is just right for me.  Nothing is too fancy to where I get overwhelmed, and the features are exactly what I Need and Want in a Recipe Software. I feel like I can suggest this program to friends and family members and not worry or second guess myself. I have already referred my friend to this program--she has a broken binder FILLED with her favorite recipes. She is not tech savvy, but I feel like even she would enjoy this program simply because it is simple and user friendly and is very practical.  I fully recommend this software with confidence.

    Buy it:
    Purchase a Cook'n Recipe Software at a discounted price or learn more about the software by checking out their website:
    Use this code to recipe 50% off your purchase: mb-sophie   


      BONUS Entry POINTS: Watch this youtube video made by our Cook'n Recipe--to verify you watched it,  just tell me one thing you saw in the video in a blog post comment.  (5 Entries)

      Disclaimer: I received one or more of the products mentioned above for free using Mom Blog Society. Regardless, I only recommend products or services I use personally and believe will be good for my readers.(
      Giveaway is open World Wide, Internationally.  Entrant must be 18 yrs or older to enter, and Mandatory first entry must be completed before extra entries count.  Giveaway will end February 22nd, 2012. midnight PST.

    Wednesday, February 8, 2012

    Tyndale House Review: Lead for God's Sake

    Lead For God’s Sake is a fictional book with the concepts of how one ought to lead.  In my opinion it scores a 3.5 out of 5 stars in terms of story line.  I think that the story line is a bit predictable which is why I rated it the way I did.  From a reader's point of view, I felt that the book could have had a more interesting story line or different point of view in which the story was told.  I did however enjoy the principles of leadership displayed in this book which would earn it a 4 out of 5 stars.  There were times when I got some light bulbs click on and times where I did get convicted about my “reasons” for doing what I do in various situations.  As I read on into the book, I did get into it, and really wanted to read it till the end.  I think it is an enjoyable book to read.  Apart from the storyline, I would recommend this book for those who are in places of leadership. 
    For me I find that I did have some soul searching in my heart to do that was because of parts of the book convicting me.  I think that anyone reading this will gain valuable insight, and even learn something for them when it comes to every day life.  
     One may find this book available at Amazon stores.
    Note: Tyndale House Publishers provided me with a complimentary copy of this book. I was not paid for this review and the opinions are my own.

    Valentine's Day Swagbucks: Collector's Bills

    Swagbucks is releasing a new set of Collector's Bills just in time for Valentine's Day - 5 romantic reminders worth different amounts of reward points. Collect them all and get 14 Bonus Swag Bucks to use towards your free stuff! The bills come out at midnight PT on Monday and will be available only through Search until 11:59pm PT on Valentine's Day. Good luck everyone!
    Here are some examples of their beautiful and very Valentine's Day Swag Bucks! :)

    Why I use Swagbucks:
    I use Swagbucks to make purchases of things that we need for our household.  I also have in the past purchased much needed things like Cloth  diapers, Disposable Diapers, and clothes for our daughter. 
    I find it a great and easy way to earn that little extra at home. 

    Right now I am saving up some Swagbucks for a much needed Lamp for our house.  We have a really dinky one that keeps burning out light bulbs.  Not only is it small and keeps needing replacement bulbs--it gives out poor lighting.  So I have about $30 in Amazon Cash right now, and  hoping to get enough Swagbucks to buy this beautiful Lamp! :) Normande Lighting 100W Incandescent Torchiere Floor Lamp with Side Reading Lamp.

    I can get closer to my goals if you do sign up using my referral.

    A New Addiction: Fit Moms for Life

    I was very encouraged yesterday by the comments received in my blog post.  Taking all the advice and encouragement I received--Staying away from measurements and scales!  And just going for it!

    I was reading today and was really moved by this one woman's Weight Loss Journey.  Just wanted to share my reads this morning before I do Dustin's Maher's Fit Moms for Life exercise:

    How Holly Lost over 40 lbs and is “Addicted” to Fit Fun Bootcamps

    Tuesday, February 7, 2012

    21 Day Weight Loss Challenge: Day 7---A Little Discouraged

    Today I went to kind of weigh myself and take some measurements just to get an idea where I am at.  I am a little discouraged because either I am bloated or have gained a belly.  My stomach seems to stick out more and it gets discouraging when I go to measure and it seems like I am getting bigger.  I have been exercising and been eating right.

    One week is going by, and was super encouraged by the energy I felt by moving.  Now it seems like my off days I need to be sweating it out and pushing hard core or else I'll just gain weight!  What do you guys think?

    My Protein Shake Day did not work out as planned.  We went grocery shopping last night and well just did not have enough money to pick up some things like Wheat Germ, Almonds, Fiber/Chia Seeds/Flax, Pork, and Beef among other things.  With what we did get were a lot of Veggies and Chicken, Yogurt and other essentials.  It was about $150-$160 grocery run.  I think I have to just figure out a different recipe for the protein shake.  So today I just kind of kept going with real foods.  I might find a smoothie recipe by tomorrow! :)  I am trying be positive today and this next week.  I am nervous for weigh in tomorrow.

    Food Log/ Menu Planner:
    Breakfast:  2 Cage Free Eggs with 1 cup of Veggies sauteed and 1/4 cup Soy Cheese. 16 oz of water
    Snack:  1/3 cup sliced banana, 1/3 cup apple slices and 1/3 cup orange sections mixed. 8 oz of water
    Lunch: Veggie Burger Patty with a protein shake.  Messed up on the protein shake and drank only half. 16 oz of water to wash it down.
    Snack: Carrots 12 baby carrots.  Serving size on the bag said about 12 carrots, Raw 8 oz of water
    Dinner: Hefty Chicken Salad with Whole Wheat Spaghetti. 16 oz of water
    8oz before bed.

    Water Intake: 9 Glasses of water.

    Make little Goals:
    Water is hard to drink during my off days, so I try to space it out.  I don't feel thirsty, so on Off Days these are my mindsets to keep me drinking Water.  One thing I do to encourage myself to drink more water is I have a glass that holds 16oz of water.  Having a Visual Goal of how much I need to drink helps me greatly.  My goal is to do my best to drink until I see half of it gone (8oz)--and then the next goal is to gulp more until I see the bottom of the glass.  Sort of like a game?  I fill it up after that.  But I always have this glass around me wherever I sit down so I remember to drink.

    Another "water game" that helps me mentally, is knowing that with each glass of water I drink---the Less hungry I become.  Water takes up that food space in my stomach.  I try to make sure to drink water after a meal because I do get really hungry and want to eat more food than I need!  Same with snacks. 

    Just little things that I think about to help me chug down the H2O.

    Below is a collection of Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

    Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life

    Introducing Podsshoes and Patterns: Baby's 1st CowBoy Leather Boots!

    These are by far one of the cutest boots I have ever seen.  Not to mention they are Recycled-Repurposed leather that were made into something truly adorable and one of a kind. Rita, maker of these beautiful shoes has extraordinary skills when it comes to making these cuties!  I for one love buying handmade, and these are on my wishlist for our daughter.  She mainly walks around barefoot with socks because she simply hates the way the shoes feel.  But now that she is about 16 months she is beginning to love the idea of shoes.

     She has a couple of other colors for boots, wanted to share the black leather ones with you.  Such a nice look for perhaps a young cowboy.

     Baby Shoes Ruffled MaryJane Shoe Turquoise Leather
    These Turquoise Mary Jane shoes are just darling!  I love the color and the ruffles. 

    Love what you see?  
    (I know I do!)
    Here is where you can peruse her selection of baby shoes!
    Visit Rita's Etsy Shop: Podshoes and Patterns
    She can also make them different sizes.  


    Discount on Walgreens Prescription Savings Club

    This is a Sponsored post written by me on behalf of Walgreens for SocialSpark. All opinions are 100% mine.
    Walgreens Prescription Savings Club is now offered at a discounted price!  For families membership costs only $35 annually.  A family membership covers your spouse, children 22 years old and younger, and pets.  For individuals the yearly membership costs only $20.
    Why join?  Well, for families like ours we don't have enough insurance coverage to cover the costs of prescriptions, and by joining we'd get that extra discounted price we need and can afford!  I think that between my daughter and I getting prescriptions in the last few months--we would have greatly benefited had we known of this great deal!  For one thing, Walgreens carries  a lot of generic medications that cost less than the brand name prescriptions.  For us living pay check by paycheck--any money saved or dollar stretched is a plus.
    Nice Benefits for joining up with the Walgreens Prescription Savings Club: 
    • It is indeed nice to be covered by Walgreens Prescription Savings Club because they provide more than 8000 brand-name and generic medications.
    • Discounts on flu shots, pet prescriptions, nebulizers and diabetic supplies
    • Bonuses when you purchase Walgreens Brand products and photo finishing services.
    Walgreens' Social Connections:
    Support Walgreens and stay  updated by liking them on Facebook:Walgreens on Facebook and following them on Twitter: Walgreens on Twitter

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    Introducing SneakPeeq

    I just signed up for an account with SneakPeeq and received a $10 off credit on any purchase.

    SneakPeeq is kind of intriguing for me.  There are three categories:  Living, Style, and Taste.  Within each category are great deals that are not disclosed unless I choose to take a "peeq" at the deal!  I am allotted 20 "peeqs" a day.  It is a fresh and fun way to shop in my opinion!  It does tend to pique my curiosity.

    My Peeqs!  

     One of my peeqs was for some Tea from Teatulia--Original price is 28.98--Sneekpeeq price is 17.00 and with my $10 off credit the tea costs me only 7.00 plus shipping. Not too bad for high quality tea!  This is the one I took a peeq at:

    Here's another neat item that I "peeqed" at!  But if you want to get the price, you will have to sign up and peeq at your deal! :)

    Get $10 off your Sneakpeeq offer just by signing up!  Claim your reward by clicking the banner below:

    *Disclaimer: This blog post may contain affiliate links, but does not influence my opinion of the service or product.  I have written this post on behalf of a Blogsvertise offer.  All opinions are 100% mine. 

    Monday, February 6, 2012

    21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge--Day 6

    Exercise Day:
    Planning on working out during my little one's nap this afternoon.  This will be a full work out consisting of Cardio, Weight Training, Core Training, and of course my favorite Flexibility/Cool down.

    Working out was great..sort of!  Sore and feeling a bit sluggish most definitely.  One thing that I realize is if you eat bad like yesterday I ate a cheesecake bar-I believe you feel it in your work out.  You feel like your legs are heavier and your stamina is not that great.  That's just my feeling.  I may be wrong, but I am now more determined not to eat sugar.  I do not like the feeling of working off bad junk food.

    The workout kicked my butt today.  
    Hardest parts to push through were the Push Ups, Backward Lunges, Planks, and High Knee Punches.  I had to pause the video for the first time to catch up with Jodi on the Backward Lunges!  I have been stepping farther back, but still feel like I'm falling behind!  I hope that I am not losing progress and going backwards!

    Egg Substitute?
    The only places I have used Egg Substitute was when I was working in a Family Coffee Shop so I looked into it more.  Egg Substitute is primarily Egg Whites.  Most nutrients are found in the yolks of eggs so in Egg Substitute the vitamins and nutrients are added.  Be careful to check what exactly is in your Egg Substitute.  What have they added? Is a question one might want to ask themselves before purchasing just any Egg Substitute.  Some of them might contain Vegetable oils, others may be low in cholesterol or no fat.  Keep an eye out for Unsaturated fats.  More info here's the website: Egg Substitute

    I am a bit mixed about Egg Substitute.  For on thing I like that I can control the amount I want knowing approximately how much nutrients I am getting out of it.  I like that control part, but I do not like that I lose out on the nutrients of the egg yolk itself.  Right now I am trying Cage/Grass free Eggs from a local farm.  I love it!  The first time I cracked open an egg was today, and low and behold two egg yolks came out!  I counted it as two eggs today, and I have to admit it has a richer flavor.  2.50 a dozen.  Not bad!  For now, I am keeping my real eggs and leaving Egg Substitute for when I make quiches. 

    Excited about Green Peppers:
    I feel very full and ready to take on the day.  I was surprised 1/2 of Green peppers and onions and eggs would be filling and taste good.  I hate green peppers, but this was really nice and tasty.  I used coconut oil too. 

    Food Log/Meal Plan:
    Breakfast:  Cage Free Eggs sauteed with Bell Pepper and Red Onion and a 1/2 glass of Milk 16 oz water

    Snack: 1/3 cup sliced banana, 1/3 cup apple slices and 1/3 cup orange sections mixed 16 oz water
    Worked out: Drank 16 oz of water total.

    Lunch: 1 cup whole wheat pasta topped with 1/2 cup pasta sauce and 1/3 cup low fat Cheese. Serve with 1 cup vegetables sauteed in 1 teaspoon olive oil 16 oz water
    Snack: 1 cup raw veggies
    Dinner: Turkey Fajitas with Whole Wheat Tortillas and Veggies {Check} 16 oz of water

    Water Intake 10 cups of water 
    Milk: 1/2 cup

    **Working out makes me drink ALOT!**

    Below is a collection of Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

    Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life

    Sunday, February 5, 2012

    21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge--Day 5

    Day off Days are a Challenge in themselves:
    Alright so today is my day off of the exercise.  Sundays are always hard days for us as a family.  Our schedule and meals are always varied depending on what plans start cooking after church.

    So I tried to do my best to plan for the worst today, because I know junk food was going to be present either at the Church snack food table or other unplanned events we were going to be invited to.

     I started off the day right with breakfast consisting of a 16 oz glass of water and 2 eggs scrambled and sauteed with onions, cheese and 1/2 a cup of black beans.  To church I packed 4 servings of Carrots.  I went right with my Breakfast, Snack and water intake--as planned.  We were going get together with a couple after church--planned.  They invited us over to their parents' house for a Super Bowl Sunday Get together--unplanned.    Lots of delectables at their parent's house!  One decadent dessert was homemade Cheesecake bars drizzled with white chocolate.  I put up a good resistance for the first 4 hours being at the house.  {We ended up staying at their place for a LONG time and by the 5pm I caved in and tried out her cheesecake bar.}  I chose to eat Taco Salad and some Phad Thai.  I had a hard time figuring out how many servings or nutritional values each would equate to.  I don't think going to this party with measuring cups and a scale would have been appropriate--but I think next time, I just might have to!  So I estimated the best by just using my fist--something somebody told me to help with portions.   I did not want to overeat on the Phad Thai, and really increased the vegetables in the taco salad so I could maximize my veggie intake.
    What was a planned 2 hours of visiting ended up being a 10 hour day. 
    Sigh I think Sundays are going to be my biggest challenge days to keep my food in control. All in all I wished I had planned for an a whole day and evening for this so here's my battle plan:

    My Battle Plan for Sundays and Unplanned Adventures:
    • Packing a water bottle is a must if one wants to hit their water intake goals.
    • Pre-pack snacks in the fridge of healthy snacks that can save me from Sweets!
    • Write down goals/ affirmations/encouragements  on a 3X5 card and place in my bag--I need something to help my mind stay focused on what my long term goals are and to encourage me to do the right thing if a day like this happens again!
    • Not sure what else, but if I think of anything I will add more to it!
    Below is a collection of Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

    Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life

    Saturday, February 4, 2012

    21 Day Mommy Blogger Fitness Challenge--Day 4

    Today's Exercise: Warm up, Weight/Strength Training, Cardio, Core Training and Flexibility/Stretching
    I have to admit I was not looking forward to exercising.  I was a tad bit grumpy and tired by the time I started working out with Jodi and Dustin.  When I started, I felt my hamstrings and quads felt sore and tight.  My little one was a being cute and trying to warm up with me by lifting her legs us as I was doing the stationary skipping.  Boy did I wish I had Dustin's Mamatone Fitness DVD when our little one was a newbie!  I think I would have loved to stayed fit back then!  Anyways she stopped being cute and started signing "more-more".  She was hungry.  I had to run around to get her dinner while trying to get daddy to take care of her.  All in all it was a bit chaotic before getting to focus in on working out. 

    The hardest part today that I dread the most was the weight training.  Those backward lunges with 8lb weights at my sides is super hard!  The muscles in my leg feel the burn quite well, and I force myself to make that 90 degree angle he talks about.  I often pause the video to make sure I do them right.  The second part about weight training is of course the push ups.  I find it difficult to go down low and up again...the positive part though is that I followed through and finished without cutting down the reps.  I really want to push myself these 21 days...I want to feel like me again!  I am super pumped tonight too for some reason.  I did one extra run through of the cardio.  I truly truly truly want to look the way I feel inside.  I feel like a young woman.  I feel like a happy person.  When I look in the mirror I see a very different person.  Oh it is so encouraging to know that with each day we exercise, eat right, choose healthy options---we are taking steps in the right direction.  I know that with each step, back lunge, high-knee punch I do--I will be that much closer to seeing that person I feel like inside.

    A New Take on Photographs and Pictures:
    Tomorrow my husband Andy asked a friend to take a family photo of us three.  I was already thinking I should wear some sort of Shapewear tomorrow to look somewhat good.  But I was really blessed by someone on facebook to share this with me: ... I finally decided that they (pictures) are for us only and my kids will want pics of me one day and they don't care how I look - they love me no matter what. I say just be you! :)

    Those were the most encouraging words I have heard about pictures--ever in my life!  A big thank you to you for what you said.  It means a lot to me.  Some new things I've learned today:  I know that my daughter loves me no matter what I look like, and I know my husband sees me the way I see him.  Through the eyes of love I find that the outer man does not matter at all. 

    Also, loving reading all those posts in the 21 Day challenge!  You guys are the reading material I've been enjoying this week.  Well, I've written my food journal down on paper today.  Nothing too crazy or special!

    Food Journal:
    Breakfast: Peanut Butter on Whole Grain Toast (Seems to be my favorite) and Egg over easy cooked with Olive Oil
    Snack: {1/2} Peanut Butter on whole Grain Toast

    Lunch: Chicken Salad with black beans and carrots, arugula
    Snack: Banana and a Banana Organic too!
    Dinner: 2 Eggs.  1/2 cup of Black Beans. Sweet Chili Sauce  I was a fend for yourself night.
    Water Intake: 7 cups of water.  

    Below is a collection of Bloggers who are taking on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

    Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life

    Fighting off Depression and the Blues with Truth

    Have you ever felt this way? 
    So lately, it just seems that everything in life seems so blue to me.  I am so overwhelmed with life.  I feel so discontent with life....I do not know why, but its like I just can't get my mind made up to enjoy the day.  There seems to be nothing out there to look forward to, I do not even feel like I matter.    

    These were some of the words that I wrote down one day when I was really under the weather.  But thankfully hidden deep down inside my mind,  I had hope for a better tomorrow because of God in my life and his promises.  Though at the time I could not "FEEL" hope or even begin to rise from the pit, one thing that kept me going was knowing God's Word was true and faithful.

     Have you ever had these Thoughts?

    "You're not worth it, you're spent, you've messed up way too much.  You life has lost its purpose."  

    There was a time in my life that I believed these thoughts and let it run around in my mind far too long.  I know for me believing these thoughts made me think other negative thoughts and led to more negative thoughts.  Soon the housework overwhelmed me.  My husband was the source of my bitterness and anger.  And I felt that I was losing my mind with my little one!  Then I felt guilty for blaming everyone and thinking I was such a bad mother...etc

    I just want to say you are not alone in how you feel and how maybe these thoughts come and go.  But as far as these thoughts go--They are not true.  These negative thoughts are lies and again, NOT TRUE.

    The Way Out: By His Word

    How God took me out of that pit of depression was through His Word.  Little by little he coaxed me by his promises.  So many times we may fight his soft loving voice, but faithful to us He remains and his promises are so true even when we fall into the pit of depression.  No matter what we feel like or hate to do this, Open up the Word of God. 

    Whenever you start feeling this way or start thinking thoughts like this, Stop.  I know that it kind of creeps on us at times, but once we notice it we have the power to stop the downward spiral.  We do not have to fall into the pit.  Even if we do fall into the pit of despair and depression--We can get back up.  We don't have to stay there.  We do not have to go through the spiral of Sadness, Depression, Despair, Anger, Guilt, Low Self Esteem, etc.  At least that's how my spiral cycles goes. I want to state this again:  We can stop.  We can get out of this pit.  

    Claiming Who we are in Christ:
    The thoughts I think about all attack who I was.  So looking back on those dark days, I found that Ephesians was a good place for me to draw some good affirmations of who I was in Christ.  Not what I thought about myself, but what the bible said about who I was.

    As I was going through Fit Moms for Life one of the aspects they do is "Affirmations".  When I was an active Mary Kay Consultant a years ago, we were encouraged to do the same kind of things by pinning up around the house "Daily Affirmations".  They caught on to something about the mind!  If I could glean from this, as a Christian we ought to think positively and have some daily Affirmations of our own!  And a bible study I did with a Beth Moore Believing God Bible study series encouraged the same thing!  I don't know why I did not pick up on it sooner, but it is invaluable!

    I encourage you as I am going to do, to Read Ephesians even if it is just the first chapter.  I'll help pick out some things that really can  help me when I feel myself get to the valley.

    You are Blessed.  (Ephesians 1:3)                         I am Blessed.
    You are Chosen.  (Ephesians 1:4)                         I am Chosen.
    You are Redeemed.   (Ephesians 1:7)                   I am Redeemed.
    You are Justified.  (Ephesians 1:7)                         I am Justified.
    You are Accepted.  (Ephesians 1:6)                      I am Accepted.
    You are Forgiven. (Ephesians 1:7)                         I am Forgiven.                                           .

    "In Love (Jesus) I am Blessed, Chosen, Adopted, Accepted, Redeemed and Forgiven."

    I do not claim to be a professional or expert in matters like this.  But I just wanted to provide you with my experience and how I am finding a way out of the pit.  I was just thinking that this is what God wanted me to say and share with you all.

    Romans 8:38-39 (New King James Version)

    38 For I am persuaded that neither death nor life, nor angels nor principalities nor powers, nor things present nor things to come, 39 nor height nor depth, nor any other created thing, shall be able to separate us from the love of God which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.

    Friday, February 3, 2012

    21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge--Day 3

    Sorry guys, today is my rest day! :)  So no workout today.  Did sweat, but I do not think it counts as exercise!  Running around with my daughter.

    Food Log:
    Breakfast: Whole Grain Toast with peanut butter, Yogurt
    Snack: Orange
    Lunch: Large Taco Salad with Black Beans
    Snack: Whole grain Toast with peanut butter.
    Dinner: Mongolian Chicken, and Beef with Vegetables-- Bean sprout, Onion, Green Pepper, Mushrooms, Carrots and Celery. Seasoned with garlic, ginger, and Hot sauce

    Crazy Water Intake today: I have been making it my goal to drink as much water as I can!  I drank 10 cups of water and had to run to the bathroom about 3-4 about 8 times today! I think that is the most I have ever drank in a LONG time.  I don't think I can drink more than 10 cups of kind of feels gross unless I was sweating profusely.  :) That or pregnant!

    Just a short blog post as my daughter is having some health issues right now.  Nothing too serious, but have to watch for signs of fever.  She started breaking out severely with hives.  Fairly fast all over her poor face.  It looked really bad.  Doc said just to watch for fever and breathing problems.  Allergic reaction or a sign that she caught something called Roseola?  Sigh...if it's not one thing it's something else!  C'est la vie!

    Below is a linky for other Bloggers who have taken on Dustin Maher's 21 Day Challenge.  Hop around and see their progress and their input on the Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge! :)

    Disclaimer: This post is in conjuction with the 21 Day Mommy Blogger Weight Loss Challenge with Dustin Maher. I am doing the Fit Moms for Life Program. I have received the program for free and have not been paid to write this post. All opinions are mine. For more information on the program please learn more about it here: Fit Moms for Life