Wednesday, October 31, 2012

Favorite October Photo

I continue to struggle shooting on manual.  But I'm determine to improve.  It doesn't help that this guy NEVER stops moving and doesn't understand smiling for the camera.  As soon as I pick it up he looks, smiles and says, "Cheese! Got it!!" as quickly as he can and then looks the other way.  Sigh.

You can imagine how super happy I was to catch him smiling AND in focus AND with catchlights AND without cropping off any body parts.  Super super happy.

I had a hard time deciding between this and one of the baby but since this guy provides me with about 1 good picture every 3 months I went with this one.

Thanks to Courtney for sponsoring this fun link-up! 

Day 30--Back For More

The Little Guy is just starting to understand consequences.  Discipline and consequences are obviously a very personal decision for parents.  You'll never find anyone that will agree with your entire strategy.  So far he has been a pretty easy little boy.  However, his newfound freedom in the "big boy bed" has led to some naptime and nighttime battles.

Tonight I was taking a bath and trying to relax.  I heard something at the door and his little face popped in.  He smile really big and said, "Hi Mama."  He then proceeded to tell me that I needed a boat in the bath.

I asked him what would happen to him since he was out of bed (an hour after he was put to bed).  He looked at me and he knew he was going to be in trouble.  Clearly he knows he shouldn't be out of bed.  He knows the consequence.  But he gets out anyway.

I wonder how often I do this to God.  How often do I know in my heart that I am doing something that I shouldn't be doing?  How often do I choose to do it anyway just because I want to?

I'd like to think the answer was never or even not very often.  But sadly I'm sure I do it way more than I think.

James 4:17 says...

Any man who knows the good he ought to do and doesn't do it sins.

I'm not sure that verse could be any plainer.  We know what we should do and we know what we shouldn't do.  But that sin nature, it just takes over!!

I have to admit I'm a little afraid to ask God what sins I commit over and over.  Because I know if He reveals them to me then I need to strive to keep that sin captive.  However I also know the joy of living within His plan for me.  It is rarely what I plan.  It is unknown.  It is sometimes scary.  But it is right where I need to be!

One day the Little Guy will decide to obey.  It's hard.  It's hard to do something you don't want to do.  But ultimately it is in his best interest to go to bed and stay in bed.  And just like I have his best interest in mind, I can rest tonight knowing God has mine!

Monday, October 29, 2012

Day 29--The Bed

I have a lot of embarrassing moments.  Most of them I have created on my own.  But this one goes down in history as the most embarrassing moment created by someone else.

My parents.

Now I went over yesterday about how fabulous my parents are.  And it's the truth.

They are also a teeny tiny bit OCD.

My Dad is officially Danny Tanner in real life.  For those of you too young to remember the show Full House, Danny was the Dad on the show.  He was, to put it kindly, a neat freak.  He vacuumed his vacuum with a dust buster.  Have I seen my Dad do that?  No.  But both he and my Mom love a clean house.  Our house perpetually looks like it came out of a Southern Living spread.  I've never even seen my parents bed unmade unless they were in it.   And I have never, ever, in all my years of living seen an article of laundry on their floor or bed.  I'm telling you, they are professionals at this clean business.

Enter teenage daughter.  I'm sure I was quite a trial to them.  I'm still only about a quarter as clean as they are on a good day.  I'm a piler.  Piles everywhere.  Piles that have been there so long they seem like part of the house.  I'm working on it and I'm sure I'm much cleaner than I was in high school.  But I know my room had to make them cringe.

I've written before that I definitely wasn't in the popular crowd at school.  Looking back that is fine but I know at the time I longed for the "cool" kids to be nice to me.  Or to invite me to one of their parties.  Then my sophomore year I started going to Campus Crusade.  I met some really nice people and started attending a Bible Study at a guy's house who was a soccer player.  He was a senior and so my best friend and I were invited to his graduation party.

I was excited.  I'm sure we took extra special care getting dressed to go that day.  I can't tell you what I had on or what food they served.  All I know is halfway through the party the doorbell rang.  And do you know who it was?  Oh yes, you're right.  My parents.  Both of them.  Awesome.

What ensued is now a hilarious story but at the time was positively mortifying.

My parents had come to the party to tell me I had to go home.  Why?


Yes you read that right.  I left the house that morning and neglected to make my bed.  So in order to teach me a lesson they allowed me to leave and then came to tell me!!  I'm not sure if embarrassing me was their intent.  Actually I think their intent was just to get me to start making my bed before I left the house, since that was our family rule.

But people seriously.  For a 16 year old.  Absolutely humiliating.

I have no idea what happened after that.  I am sure I went outside and argued with them.  How do you explain something like this to a room full of people?  I guarantee I lost the argument and had to return home to make my bed.

My parents taught me lots and lots and LOTS of wonderful lessons.  I attribute my success as a person, wife and mother to things I learned growing up in their home.  They were nurturing, loving and expected a lot out of me.  And they know they I thank them for it.

But this?  I don't think I can ever thank them for that!

Linking up with Shell

Monday Miscellany

It's Monday which means it's time to link up with Carissa for some Miscellany Fun!

earrings: midnight navy and apple jade with turquoise

I just ordered these fun little baubles from etsy last night!  Can't wait to get them!!  We all know I can't feed my jewelry addiction from Handpicked any longer so it's time to branch out.  I've been searching etsy for some fun things and I'm telling you what that website is so fabulous.  I've bought things before but seriously you can find just about anything!

So....I need to buy some door snakes.  I can't seem to pick a pattern.  Here are my choices....which do you prefer?

Draft Stopper, Draft Excluder, Blue, White, Stripes. 45.Washable Door Draft Stopper, Draft Stopper, Navy Blue, Polka Dots, 177Door Draft Stopper, Draft Snake, Dandelion, Sand, Cotton.  20Door Draft Stopper, Draft Snake, Cream Embroidered, Leaves. 118Draft Stoppers, Door Draft Stopper, Gold, Black Print. 21.Door Draft Stoppers, Draft Guard, Navy Blue Bold Stripes, 34

We've definitely entered into the "who knows what my kid is going to say next" stage at our house. My just turned 2 year old is very verbal.  I have no idea where he gets that (cough).  Anyway tonight he jumped out of the bathtub and ran top speed to find me.  When he saw me he stopped in his tracks and loudly said, "What's going on???"  Totally speechless.

Also making me speechless?  My 6 month old that is crawling and whom we found STANDING UP in his crib this morning.  I told him he needed to slow his grow.  Because seriously I am not ready for this!!  The Little Guy didn't crawl til he was 81/2 months.  I thought I had so much more time!  Although I will say, once babies can sit up picture opportunities become more numerous and fun.

Just a little commercial break of cuteness here....

Mini Daddy

Mini Mama


This week I plan to get organized.  We had such a great church service this morning.  One of the points the pastor made was about waiting for your life to be perfect.  He said to stop waiting for your house to be clean or everything to be the way you want it.  And I feel like I've been doing that for the last month or two.  Maybe I've been waiting for my house to clean itself?  I don't know.  Regardless I feel a new sense of purpose.  We'll see how this week goes.

I hope you have a fabulous Monday!!  If you are a new reader welcome!  You can follow me on Pinterest, Twitter or Facebook if you'd like!  Also you have to come back later to hear my most embarrassing moment as a teenager....well, other than the time I split my pants in the parking lot.

Day 28--The Hard Way

This is a tale of two lessons I was supposed to learn as a child.  One lesson I learned.  One lesson scarred me for life and will remain forever in my "most embarrassing moments" memoir, which is actually getting pretty long.  Apparently I do a lot of embarrassing things.

Let me start with this disclaimer.  I have wonderful, fabulous, amazing, awesome parents.  I really do.  And I'm not just saying that because they read my blog.  You will no doubt see how terrific they are after my first story.  My second story won't make you doubt their merits as parents but you'll probably be glad they were mine and not your.

Lesson 1

We took a lot of family vacations growing up.  My Grandaddy always said you can never afford to vacation but you can never afford to NOT vacation.  So we vacationed.  We took a lot of roadtrips and our mainstay for eating was Cracker Barrel.  (Cracker Barrel please come to Washington!!!)

If you have never been to a Cracker Barrel picture this.  Warm inviting kitschy atmosphere.  A huge roaring fire in the winter complete with rocking chairs and a country store in the front of the restaurant.  The food is yummy and inexpensive and it's a great family eatery.

I was probably 8 years old on this particular visit and was purchasing some of the candy sticks in the store.  They were 10 for a dollar and I would buy them as my treats for the week on vacation.  My parents had left me in the store and when I went out to the car I realized the cashier had given me an extra penny as change.

Now I guess pennies might have been worth a little more back then but not by much.  The lesson I learned however was worth much more.  If you haven't already guessed my Dad made me march back into the Cracker Barrel and give the cashier the 1/100th of a dollar she accidentally gave me.

I remember being a little embarrassed at the time but it taught me a valuable lesson.  If I couldn't be trusted with a penny then how could I be trusted with more?  I appreciate the lesson and will tell my children that story as they grow up.


You'll have to come back tomorrow for the rest of the story.  And I promise you will NOT want to miss this!

Aren't they the cutest parents?  Both responsible for making me, me!

Sunday, October 28, 2012

Day 27--Have Patience

Did you even sing this song growing up?

Have patience.  Have patience.
Don't be in such a hurry.
When you are impatient,
you only start to worry.

Remember, remember.
That God is patient too.
And, think of all the times that others
have to wait for you.

I learned it from a record featuring Herbert Snail.  Herbert wanted to get everywhere fast so he would ride a skateboard, crashing into people and yelling at people to get out of the way.  And I guess the little song about patience sunk in because now I sing it to the Little Guy.

As kids it is HARD to be patient.  Road trips are agony.  Waiting for Christmas seems to take all year.  (ha ha).  And then of course there is waiting for your film to be developed.  Wait, scratch that.  My kids will never have that experience!

Sometimes I am impatient.  I catch myself telling my toddler "hurry hurry".  And sometimes I say that to God.  I probably use a nicer tone.  But I definitely tell him I'm ready for things to happen.

I don't think anyone likes to wait.  One of my good friends once told me to never pray for patience.  God would certainly answer that prayer by giving me something to wait for!

But God does want us to be patient.  And sometimes he gives us things to wait for regardless of whether we want them or not.

We are in a season of waiting at our house.  We have no idea how long the season will be.  But I pray I can model patience for my boys instead of tearing through life on a skateboard.  When you are going that fast you often miss the good stuff.  The extra hugs and kisses.  The I love yous.  The cuddle time in the morning after they wake up.

I'm praying for patience because I'm ok if God gives me more to wait for.  I know whatever he has in store will be incredible!

I waited 27 long years for this wonderful man and it was worth every minute :)  So thankful for such a wonderful, supportive husband!

Saturday, October 27, 2012

Eggplant Fritters

Even though Tacoma is really starting to feel like home there are some major things I miss about Charleston.  Obviously I miss my wonderful friends.  But food comes in a very close second.  Man oh man.  I could recommend restaurants that would keep you eating for weeks!

One of my downtown favorites was a little place called Five Loaves.  They had a fabulous "pick two" menu.  My favorite combo was a ham & brie sandwich with green tomato jam and slaw and the eggplant fritter salad.

I've been craving these fritters and decided it was just time I made them at home.  I scoured recipes and found one that I tweaked a bit to make it as paleo friendly as possible.  These were to die for.  Seriously, seriously yummy!!

Eggplant Fritters
1 egg beaten
2 tsp baking powder
2 Tbsp coconut or almond flour
1 medium eggplant (about one cup mashed)
dash salt
dash pepper
1 T butter

Peel and dice your eggplant.  Boil in salted water until it is mushy.  While the eggplant is cooking mix your other ingredients in a bowl.

Take your eggplant out of the water and drain.  You want to get as much water out of it as you can.  Then mix well with the other ingredients.  

The online recipe called for deep frying in oil.  Because I'm trying to be healthy and honestly see no reason to do that I made them just like pancakes.  I did coat my pan with an olive oil cooking spray (much healthier than the other stuff that comes in a can).  

These came out a beautiful golden brown color.  Then were light and fluffy and very flavorful.  I loved the slight bit of sweet that the coconut flour added but they would be just as good with regular flour or almond flour.

I served them Five Loaves style on a bed of spinach with goat cheese and roasted asparagus.  I also added shrimp that I sauteed in garlic and olive oil.  It was fabulous!!

I hope you enjoy these fritters as much as we did.  They are a fun new ingredient to add to salads but have plenty of taste to use as a side dish on their own as well!


Day 26--Recharge

It's not very often that you move from sea to shining sea and two of your best friends follow. But it happened to me.  Well, I was the middle mover....but still.  

What a blessing these two ladies are to me!  They support me through the highs and lows of being a military spouse and a mommy of 2 boys!  Somehow we all managed to have two boys so get togethers are quite the sight.

We were able to take some Mommy time tonight and went to paint downtown.  It was so much fun!  We enjoyed a Starbucks treat and fun fellowship!

It's interesting to look at our paintings.  They are as different as we are.  Even though ours lives are parallel we are three totally different people.  And somehow it works.  We are able to be there for each other and we understand each other.  We have different interests and different strengths.  But we love our sweet husbands, darling boys and Jesus.  

And I am so blessed to know them!!!

Friday, October 26, 2012

Day 25--Perspective

I'm in a little bit of a slump.

The whole "you finished your food challenge hoorah" is over.  I'm tired of cooking 3 meals a day but I'm so please with the weight loss success that I'm not sure what else to do.  Must find more recipes!

My house is a mess.  I feel like we just have so much stuff!  It's time to get rid of things.  But who comes to a garage sale in November?

Blogging 25 days in a row has taken a lot of energy and time.  I'm glad to push myself.  I'll be glad to finish!

I feel inspired to be organized and intentional.  I need a nap.

Currently I have a 4x4 hole in the ceiling of my kitchen, a leak in my roof and a back porch that needs replacing.  I'm already tired of having workmen in my house and they haven't even started.  Having an old house is great but needing all these repairs is not.

I haven't started Christmas shopping yet...usually I am almost finished by now.  Sigh.

When I have a pity party day like this it's time to start taking stock of my blessings.  I'm quite sure they will outweigh my frustration!

--Did you see this post?  Is my kid cute or what?

--The Little Guy asked me for breakmast this morning.  Love!

--We got a GREAT deal on a BOB Duallie and I took it out for a spin today.  It was awesome!

--Our sweet adopted grandparent neighbors are going to take care of the dog for us while we go home for Christmas.  So thankul!

--They also gave me the cutest little pjs and an outfit for the baby for Halloween.  Just because.

--I have about 8 pairs of pants that fit for the first time in over 2 years.  Score!

--I got some GREAT deals on clothes for my new nephew this week.  This furthers my desire to become a professional baby clothes shopper.

--Parent's magazine sent me another Gymboree coupon.  Yay!!

--I have 2 new recipes to try this weekend.

--I have a girl's night tomorrow night!!

--Did I mention we get to go home for Christmas??

--And how about those every morning?  That's pretty awesome too.

Sometimes a little perspective is all you need!!

My Little Little Guy

What am I going to do when this kid starts begging me for treats and toys?

Love this grin!!!

Thursday, October 25, 2012

Day 24--Singing Songs

It's been on my to do list for months to get some more music.  I got a little CD player last year for Christmas and we listen to that often while we eat breakfast or do crafts.  I bought a Little People CD last year that has fun songs that you might sing in Sunday School.  It's a really cute CD and not annoying at all.  If there is one thing that I don't like it is listening to children (or anyone for that matter) sing off key.  I can't stand it.  So I'm a little picky when it comes to music!

All of the sudden the Little Guy has started singing along with these songs.  I knew we listened to it a lot but still!  I'm so excited!!  I want to instill the love of music in him since it is such a huge part of my life.  But more importantly, I want him to learn the meaning of the worlds he is singing.

Deep & wide....Ephesians 3:16-19
 I pray that out of his glorious riches he may strengthen you with power through his Spirit in your inner being, 17 so that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith. And I pray that you, being rooted and established in love, 18 may have power, together with all the Lord’s holy people, to grasp how wide and long and high and deep is the love of Christ, 19 and to know this love that surpasses knowledge—that you may be filled to the measure of all the fullness of God.

Clap Your Hands...Psalm 47:1
Clap your hands all ye people, shout unto God with a voice of triumph

Praise Him....Psalm 113:1
Praise the LORD. Praise, O servants of the LORD, praise the name of the LORD.

I love hearing his little voice sing these words.  Praise Him.  Hosanna.  Praise Him!

I keep thinking I can't love being a parent even more....but it just keeps getting better and better!

Wednesday, October 24, 2012

Day 23--Home is....

About 18 months ago I posted about leaving my wonderful home in Charleston, SC.  I was dreading the move and avoided thinking about it as much as possible.  As I was driving home tonight I looked around and thought....someday, I'm going to miss this place.

It kind of shocked me.

I mean, I've said over and over again that I really like it here but the truth is, I really really do!

The Lord has blessed us with wonderful friends, a wonderful church, a fabulous house and an amazing neighborhood to call home.  I'm spoiled for the rest of my life since I can walk almost anywhere I want to go.  I have calla lillies blooming in my backyard.  And blackberries too!  I can see Mt. Rainier and Puget Sound from my bedroom window.  I get to wear rainboots.  And scarves.

I still miss Charleston.  I miss my dear friends.  I miss our church.  I miss the farmer's market and the beach.  I really miss the food.  I miss all the things that I thought I would miss.

But I love it here too.

As I looked back at this old post I had to smile at the picture I picked of Tacoma.  I had no idea what Washington or Tacoma would look like.  I didn't know where we would live.  I certainly had no idea it was built on a hill!  And somehow I managed to pick a picture of a scene I see almost everyday.  Somehow I picked a picture of home. I can even pick out the hospital where we had Reed.

Ultimately home is wherever my three boys are.  But it's nice to enjoy the other stuff too.

I am so blessed to live in this beautiful place I call home!

View from the Farmer's Market

View on our daily walk

(even this little picture here was taken on a walk through our neighborhood)

Tuesday, October 23, 2012

Day 22--The New Girl

Don't you love it when you are in church and you feel like the sermon was written specifically for you? It's just like the pastor knows exactly what your heart needed to hear.  And someone he manages to say it in a way that speaks to you directly without using your name.  I think it's magical.

I found a blogger that did this for me the other day.  And I've wrestled a little bit about whether to post about it.  There is something liberating about blogging because you are behind a computer screen.  However I'd be naive to think that friends and family don't read because I know they do.  So for me there is a certain vulnerability as well.

Kristen from We Are THAT Family posted about her thirteen year old daughter attending a pool party as the new girl.  Here's the link to For The New Girl In All Of Us.

I wanted to cry a little after I read the post.  My heart was just crying out....that's me.  That is me.  She doesn't even know me.  How could she write this post that is totally about me?

Because I hate being the new girl.  I cringe every time I have to go to a squadron potluck, a wives social or a women's event at church.  Sometimes when I go to MOPS, even though I sit at a table with some of my best friends I wonder if they are really glad to see me.  I wonder why I'm the one who calls an old friend to catch up.  Why no matter how confident I could be professionally, I seem to be so easily intimidated personally.

I wasn't one of the "popular" kids growing up.  I knew it and I was ok with it.  But somehow over the years I've become more unsure of who I am.  And I wonder now....why would other people like me if sometimes I don't like myself?

Here is the beautiful part of the story though.  The Bible makes it SO very clear that God loves us.  He sent His Son to DIE for us.  For me.  I can't imagine loving anyone so much that I would sacrifice one of my sweet babies.  But God did.

The Bible also says we are "fearfully and wonderfully made" and he "delights in us".  I KNOW what that is like.  Sometimes my face hurts at the end of the day because I've smiled at my boys all day long.  I delight in them.  They bring me joy, even when they are rotten.

I'm not saying that I'm going to waltz into every party from now on like a movie star.  But I am going to give myself a break.  I'm going to claim these promises for my life.  I'm going to work harder at getting to know people.  I'm going to smile at someone I've never seen before.  Who knows.....she may be the new girl too.

Linking with Shell today

Monday, October 22, 2012

Miscellany Monday

I am so excited about these next few weeks!!  Lots of fun stuff coming up!  Linking up with my friend Carissa today!!

We have a crawler!  And a sitter upper by himselfer!  I can't believe it!!  Baby boy is busy busy and I wish he would just slow down a little bit.  He seems to be growing so fast I can't keep up.  And speaking of keeping up.  Apparently I can't keep up with what the Little Guy is learning.  On our way home from Seattle this weekend we heard him counting to 8 in Spanish.  Spanish?  Neither of us speaks Spanish.  When I asked him where he learned it he told me from Diego.  I'm still kind of flabbergasted about the whole thing!


We went up north of Seattle this weekend and came home with a new double BOB stroller!  Craigslist has been pretty good to us over the last few years and this time was no exception.  We got a great deal and it is in wonderful shape.  It was pretty dirty but looks like new after 2 rounds in the washing machine!  I can't wait to try it out!


I finished my Whole30 Challenge on Friday.  You can read more about it here.  It is one of the most challenging things I have ever done!


I had to get creative in the kitchen over the past four weeks.  I modified this recipe for Pineapple Guacamole Burgers that I found on paleomg.  They were divine!!


We bought plane tickets to go home for Christmas this weekend!  I was feeling MAJORLY homesick since we missed the birth of our new nephew and our niece's 3rd birthday.  I love living here but I really really miss my family.  We are going to pack in as much fun as possible for 2 weeks!!  I'm thrilled that Peter will get to spend the holiday with us and with all of his family.  What a blessing!


Stroller fitness may sound wimpy but I'm telling you is not for the faint of heart!  These ladies are in great shape and I leave every time thinking I might die on the way home.  It is such a great workout and I enjoy getting to hangout with some sweet girlfriends that also attend the class.  The Little Guy loves going now too because he plays in the daycare.  The last two times he didn't even turn around when I left.  I guess I should be glad about that but he could at least pretend!!


I'm a Nicholas Sparks fan.  A big one.  And somehow I missed it last year when a new book came out.  Something about being a single Mama and pregnant...hmmm....I can't remember!  Anyway...I ordered it on (love that site!) and it came on Saturday.  Sadly I've already finished it so now I have to wait until the next book comes out!

I hope you had an amazing weekend as well!!  If you are a new reader I am so glad to have you!  I'm excited about all the upcoming holiday fun and I have some fun crafts and projects up my sleeve since we've officially entered rainy all the time weather here in the PNW!  Also if you aren't following on Twitter, Facebook or Pinterest I'd love to have you follow there too!!

Have a fabulous Monday!!!

Two of my favorite shots from last week!

Day 21--Savor Today

We have some behind the scenes stuff going on at our house right now.  It still isn't blog approved but I can say that everything is ok.  Regardless it has been challenging and we still have some uncertainty in our future.

If I have learned one thing from being a wife and a mom and a military family it is this.....

savor today.

And that is the very reason why my house isn't the cleanest.  My magazines are piled on the coffee table with hopes for naptime reading.  And sometimes I just don't get a shower.

Sometimes it is best to just cuddle with the baby.  Who knows when the big guy will stop napping and we'll stop getting our afternoon alone time.

Sometimes it's just best to leave the dishes and wrestle with the Little Guy.  Better yet?  Watching Daddy wrestle.  Laughter and giggles fill the room.  And sometimes afterward my face hurts because I'm smiling so much.

Sometimes you just need to take that vacation.  Read that book.  Extend that bedtime.  Because you really never know what tomorrow will bring.  It might be something that will change your life forever.  It might mean you never get the chance to do that thing you've been meaning to do.

So savor today!!

Mission Accomplished!

It's the post you've all been waiting for.   A little wrap up of the last month's project--the Whole30.

If you aren't familiar with the Whole 30 here is a little overview...

30 Days of Clean Eating

-no dairy
-no sugar of any kind (honey, agave etc)
-no grains (this includes corn)
-no white potato
-no legumes (beans, lentils etc)

You're probably thinking...what in the world CAN you eat?

limited fruits
lean meat
healthy fat

All day every day for 30 days.

At the beginning of the challenge I felt awesome.  I felt very empowered and confident that I could and would finish.  I blogged about it early on purpose because I didn't want to chicken out.  The first week was rough physically.  Your body adjusts to the lack of junk you are putting into it so I didn't feel fabulous.  However this cleared up around Day 5 or 6.

On day 10 I thought I might give up.  I was SO grumpy and just wanted something comforting.  Thankfully a friend of mine gave me the super simple banana pancake recipe and that helped me immensely the rest of the time.  I am not a huge breakfast eater so it was really hard to force myself to eat breakfast in the morning.  Having pancakes helped me get my protein & vegetable at the same time and I didn't feel as yucky eating in the morning.

The hardest part about the challenge was cooking for every single meal.  Sure I could snack on fruits or vegetables but you are supposed to eat meat, veggies and a healthy fat at each meal.  So that was a lot of dish washing and a lot of "what am I going to do for lunch because I forgot to defrost meat again".  If I were giving advice to something who wanted to try this it would be to have some meals planned ahead of time!!

Around Day 28 I almost quit again.  I know that sounds crazy but I had a little bit of a stomach ache for a couple of days and then only thing I wanted was bread.  Nothing sounded good, especially meat and vegetables!  But I powered through and made it!!

Will I continue?  I don't know.  I can't say that I saw a huge difference in how I felt on a daily basis.  I did take less naps than I had been taking.  My skin cleared up a tiny bit but I tend to have fairly clear skin.  I still got migraines and still had minor tummy issues throughout.  I did not notice a difference in my milk supply since I am still nursing.

Saturday was the first day I could reintroduce food.  I had a little bit of cheese on my salad at lunch and some ice cream for dinner.  Today I felt like I was going to die.  Seriously.  So I'll have to keep giving dairy a try and see if it is worth it!  I am also excited to try some paleo recipes out since you are permitted to use natural sweeteners like honey.  I can say that my sugar cravings are almost non-existent.  I used to want something sweet all the time.  Now I am ok with it.

I am SUPER pleased with my weight loss.  I lost an average of 2 pounds per week--8 pounds total.  My clothes are looser and I was finally able to break past a plateau where I was stuck for a couple of months.  I still have 20 pounds to lose so I am debating if I want to continue a paleo-type diet or try something else.

I liked this challenge because there weren't any options.  I wasn't tempted to have a 3 cookies because I knew I couldn't even have 1.  I used coconut cream quite a bit as a dairy substitute so coffee was a treat.  I also snacked on nuts and Lara bars when I was in a rush and didn't have time to make something.  I ate approximately 11 billion eggs.

The biggest thing I learned from this challenge is that I am WAY stronger than I thought.  I am WAY more disciplined than I thought.  And I am WAY underconfident in who I am.

This seemed virtually impossible to me at the beginning.  Not only did I finish but I finished well.  I followed the plan and stayed true the whole thirty days.  I went to parties and MOPS and places that had lots of yummy food.  I did not give in!

I am WAY more disciplined.  And I can apply that discipline to other areas of my life.  I've kind of felt like I've been spinning my wheels lately.  Lots of rotating but covering no new ground.  That is exhausting and a waste of time.  I feel motivated to make more changes in my life and have the confidence that I can be disciplined enough to follow through.

I don't know if I really totally like who I am.  I think this has more to do with physical appearance than who I am on the inside.  God has really been showing me that I have to believe TRUTH when it comes to that.  That I am fearfully and wonderfully made.  Not sure that was the goal of the Whole30 but I learned it anyway!

So there you have it!  A LONG update on one crazy month.  I'm still in the reintroduction phase so I'll be updating once more after I finish.  If you have any questions or want to give the Whole30 a try I'd love to help you out!!

Many thanks to my sweet husband who gave up sugar as well this month and endured many repeat meals!!  And to my friends who were so supportive and encouraging!!

A few days post Reed

Pre Whole 30

I don't have a post-Whole30 picture yet but I'll get one soon!!  I'm down 40 pounds with 20 more to go!!

Sunday, October 21, 2012

Pineapple Avocado Burgers

We've been craving burgers at our house lately and I wasn't sure I'd be able to find one worth making.  At our house we love bread and cheese and all the good stuff that makes a burger a burger.  It is embarrassing to admit we've had these 3 times in the last week?  Maybe?

1lb ground beef
1 white onion, sliced thin
1/3 tablespoon chipotle chili powder
2 garlic cloves, minced
1/2 teaspoon onion powder
1/2 teaspoon coarse sea salt
1/2 teaspoon black pepper
1 large avocado or 2 small
juice of 1 lime
juice of 1/2 lemon
1 tsp hot sauce
1/2 tsp chipotle chili powder
1 tsp olive oil
salt to taste

I've made some modifications to the original recipe because it was WAY too spicy for my taste.  I like moderately spicy food so that should give you an idea of whether you want to keep the same amount of chili powder or add more!

For the burgers you'll mix the ground beef, garlic, onion powder, sea salt, black pepper and 1/3 T chili powder together.  White your burgers are grilling mix up the avocado crema.  Combine the avocado, lime, lemon, hot sauce, chili powder and olive oil in a food processor.  You'll want to use a small one because there isn't quite enough liquid in this to mix properly in a larger one.  Add your salt at the end if you think it needs it.

I am sure this dish would have been even more divine if we had used fresh pineapple but I didn't have one on hand.  We used canned and it was still amazing!  I grilled the pineapple slices and the sliced onion topped the burgers with it.  They were gorgeous and super flavorful!!!

This is a great paleo/Whole30 friendly  meal also!

Linking here!

Day 20--The D World

I had a big post planned about the end of my Whole30 today.  Instead I took my own advice from the past few weeks and spent time with my sweet family.  However doing this challenge the past month has made me realize one thing.

I'm more disciplined than I think I am.

And that leaves me with no excuses.  I'll be the first to admit I struggle with just being quiet.  I like to have music on or be on the phone.  I like to play with the boys.  I enjoy blogging and checking facebook to see what my friends are up to.

My priorities are often in the wrong order.

How many days to I wake up and check my email and then get sidetracked and forgot to read my Bible?  I don't want to answer that question.  And in the past I've kind of given the excuse of "I'm just not very disciplined" to make myself feel better.

If this girl can give up all the "good stuff" for a month then I can for sure make sure I am spending time in the word everyday.

So....starting tomorrow...because it IS already tomorrow for some of you and it's almost tomorrow here I'm starting another 30 day challenge.  We'll call this one the Heart30 and I challenge you to do it with me.

Spend time with Jesus everyday.

And please feel free to ask me how it is going!!

Friday, October 19, 2012

Day 19--Rest

Come to me, all ye who are weary and burdened and I will give you rest.

Matthew 11:28

Resting on this beautiful promise tonight.  This Mama is tired!!

Come back tomorrow for a review of my Whole30!!  As of tonight I am finished!!!!

Day 18--AWEsome

One of the Little Guy's favorite games to play on my phone is Monkey Preschool.  It's a great learning tool with cute graphics and age appropriate games.  After he gets a question correct the monkey always congratulates him saying something like terrific, awesome or great job!

Now he walks around giving props to himself all the time.  He'll do something and he will say "Good job Stattord" (this is what he calls himself).  He often repeats the monkey while he plays.  It's pretty cute.

The word awesome is WAY overused in our society.  It's totally an 80s word and reminds me of surfers for some reason.  Or maybe the Teenage Mutant Ninja Turtles.

When I searched for the definition of awesome it said this...

extremely impressive...inspiring  great admiration or fear...excellent

I'm pretty sure I use awesome to describe just about anything in my life that I enjoy.  And I think it's wrong.

Here are some things that are awesome...

You are awesome, O God, in your sanctuary; the God of Israel gives power and strength to his people. Praise be to God! Psalm 68:35

Do not be terrified by them, for the LORD your God, who is among you, is a great and awesome God. Deuteronomy 7:21

How awesome is the LORD Most High, the great King over all the earth! Psalm 47:2

Come and see what God has done, how awesome his works in man's behalf! Psalm 66:5

Now those are some instances when it is appropriate!

I love the lyrics to this song.  It talks about some of God's wonderful attributes....His mercy....His grace...His mighty love.  These are things that are awesome.  They make me stand at the foot of the cross in AWE of his love for me.  In AWE of his sacrifice.  In AWE of his mercies that are new every morning.  In AWE of the grace he has given me.  In AWE that he takes away my sin and makes me a new creation.

THIS is what AWEsome was meant to be!

When I think of Your mercy 
When I look upon Your face 
When I sing of Your beauty 
When I'm broken by Your grace 
I stand amazed without words 
or token whispers 
I humbly bow in silence at Your feet 
I'm overwhelmed by Your mighty love 
that causes me to be completely 
I'm in awe of You 

In awe of You, the glory of Your presence 
In awe of You, the power of Your name 
In awe of You 
The Holy Lamb that takes away all sin 
To make me new 
I'm in awe of You 

Isn't creation AWE-some?

Thursday, October 18, 2012

Day 17--This Guy

I talk a lot about the fabulousness of my children.  And it is true.  They are pretty awesome. 

The second best thing to actually being a Mama?  Watching your husband transform overnight from a husband to a father.


There is little that I enjoy more than watching my sweet husband interact with his little buddies.  Their faces light up when he walks into the room.  The Little Guy runs to the door when he gets home.  He wants to be with his Daddy whenever he can.

I love hearing the Little Guy giggle when Daddy sings to him during his bath.  I love watching the Littlest get the biggest smile with two deep dimples as soon as he sees him.  

I love it that I get to be a Mama with this guy.

I don't tell him often enough.  I don't leave enough random cards around the house for him to find.  I certainly wear sweatpants a little too often.  

But babe....I'm so glad we get to be the Mama & Daddy together!

Pumpkin Patch

Columbus Day is a holiday for the military so we were fortunate to have an extra day to spend with Peter while his sister and nephews were here.  We took the boys to a pumpkin patch in Olympia and it didn't not disappoint!  They had a great time and sometimes when we get in the car the Little Guy asks me if we are going on a hay ride!

Isn't this hay maze gorgeous?  It was such a pretty barn!  They had this maze for the smaller kids and a corn maze for the big people.

The hayride!

Family picture time.  In the background is a hay playground

The Littlest Guy

How cute are these?  They had a little tractor path to drive on.  The boys loved this!

Little Guy hanging out in the pumpkin patch.  He picked the biggest pumpkin he could find.

Me & my 3 boys!!

We were so blessed to have PERFECT weather the entire week.  We enjoyed the pumpkin patch, our locals parks, the zoo and of course shopping!!  Wish we lived closer to our family but I am so thankful we got to spend this wonderful week together!!


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