Sunday, September 19, 2010

Mamavation Monday

Hello ladies!

Let's start off with the weight situation. This week I maintained...didn't lose or gain one single ounce. I'm glad I didn't gain...but I thought I did really well with my food choices this week, so a big WHATEVER (talk to the hand) to you, Mr. Scale.

Also, over the past two days I've come down with some sort of allergy attack/cold disaster. I tried a neti pot for the first time and held my head upside down instead of tilted to the side. That's why using neti pots is now known as "medicinal water boarding" as far as I'm concerned. I also purchased some elderberry extract which tastes like it came straight from the seventh circle of hell. So...between the two, hopefully I'll feel better soon.

Our sponsor this week is Subway which as most of us know, is one of the best options for healthy food on the go. I'm not sure if I'll make it to Mamavation TV this week, since my sister is being induced Monday night (SQUEE!). We'll see how quickly she progresses and whether she wants to lovingly hold my hand and use my beautiful face as a focal point during contractions, or if she grows three heads and starts throwing things and roaring.

Hope you all have a fabulous week! This time next week, I'll officially be "Aunt CJ" look out for incredible words of wisdom and thought-provoking insight.

Monday, September 13, 2010

Mamavation Monday 9/13

So this week, I seem to be a little more in the groove of things.

I lost 3 lbs, bringing my weight to 235.8. That puts me at a net weight loss of 20.2 lbs.

Even though I lost 3 lbs, which I'm very happy about, I still could have done much better. I didn't work out, and my eating could have been MUCH better. I was in the hospital a lot visiting a family member (no worries-they're ok!), which means I either ate hospital food (eww) or ordered something. I'm not going to stress too much about this because I was there supporting a family member and there wasn't a whole lot I could do about the food situation.

The next few weeks are probably still going to be bananas, because I'll be taking my state nursing assistant exam, *hopefully* getting a job, and I'm expecting a brand new nephew! This will be my sister's first child, and my first niece or nephew, so we're all pretty excited/nervous/terrified! My dear sister has entrusted me (or conned me) to help her make healthy and nutritious food for her and her family after Baby Alex is born, so this is definitely a motivator to find new yummy-yet-good-for-you foods.

Hope you all have a fabulous week!

Friday, September 10, 2010

A Loss of Innocence

When I was in eighth grade, I had absolutely nothing to complain about. I mean sure...I complained (hello, I was a middle schooler), but really I had NOTHING legitimate to whine about. I had two fabulous, still married parents that loved me and pretty much gave me whatever I wanted within reason. I had a sister who, despite daily fights about who borrowed who's clothes without asking, looked after me and treated me more like a friend than an annoying little sis. I was growing up in a small, quiet town with virtually no crime rate. I could run around my farm all day and all night long without a worry. I was innocent, naive, and carefree - everything a 13 year old girl should be.

Then one day, 9 years ago today, I walked into my social studies class to find an image similar to this on the TV

I walked in right as a plane was hitting the second tower. I seriously thought there was an action movie playing in the background - until I heard the commentary of a news anchor. Some very horrified, unscripted commentary.

In an instant, my world was shattered. I didn't know anyone who might have been in danger...not by a long shot, but I did know I didn't feel safe. I mean, this was America. All of our fighting was done overseas. No one would ever bomb or attack us all the way over here. In my (barely) teenaged mind, things like this just did NOT happen in the United States. I don't know if I even recognized that things like this happened in other parts of the world. In my head, vicious attacks like this ended with World War II (like I said, I was naive..about a lot of things).

Suddenly, people were throwing around words that I'd never heard before - words like "terrorist" and "al-Qaeda". I couldn't seem to wrap my head around the fact that a COUNTRY wasn't responsible for this. In history, I'd always heard things like "X Country attacked Y Country" not "X terrorist group attacked the civilians of Y nation".

There's a time when everyone grasps the concept that the world is much bigger than they realize. It may not come when until they're 90 years old, or it may come when they're a 13 year old middle schooler. The day I realized that the world expanded beyond my small town in the country was September 11, 2001.

Where were you on that day? How did it effect you?

PS - Thanks to Lauren at Mommy is Rock n Roll for her post that inspired me to write this.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

Blogger's Block

Ah...blogger's block. I think we've all experienced it at some point. You know it's been a few days since you've posted, but you're just STUCK.

And in those time's, we tend to blog about how we don't know what to blog about...but just feel the need to write something and connect with people (ex: now).

Now, no one asked for my advice on blogger's block. My blog is still a newborn baby and people don't really seek me out for advice on internet writing. I'm going to give it anyway, in case someone just happens to stumble by here and read it.

It's been my (limited) experience that blogger's block is best cured by reading the blogs of others. I'm not saying if your fav blogger wrote something about her dog being neutered you should write that too, but if you think bigger picture (like "surgery" or "pet") I'm sure you will have your own unique story you might be excited to blog about.

My point is, when all else other blogs. Not only am I absolutely CONVINCED that reading is the best way to become a better writer, but it helps you connect with others.

Does a particular post pull at your heart strings and remind you of the time something happened to someone you know? Consider blogging about it. After all, our writing should (in my opinion) evoke emotion and connect with an audience. Use that to your advantage, fellow bloggers.

"He who trains his tongue to quote the learned sages, will be known far and wide as a smart ass." -- Howard Kandel

Quotes - I heart them.

A friend of mine once told me that he thought quotations are the uneducated's version of reading. But now I've gone and quoted him hating on quotes.

I do love reading...don't get me wrong, but I believe he is horribly incorrect when it comes to quotes. I have deep-seeded love for quotations - whether they be famous, funny, insightful, or witty.

" It is a good thing for an educated man to read books of quotations. " - Winston Churchill

Why yes, Mr. Churchill - I agree.

You see, quotes in no way replace a thought-provoking novel full of imagery and metaphors and themes. However, they do in fact let you know that you aren't alone. No matter how I'm feeling, I can always find a quote that perfectly describes it. Even when words fail me, I can trust that they haven't failed someone else. This does not make me feel unoriginal and it doesn't take anything away from the feelings I might have. Quotes that exactly describe how sad I feel do not make me happier. Quotes that describe how excited I feel do not take away from my joy. Quotes, for me, are a sort of haven. They give me solace because I know even if people I know can't relate to how I'm feeling, someone at some point in time can.

Our brains tend to generalize things to fit into certain yes, I'm sure I have taken many quotes way out of context. I do not recommend taking my advice about quotations and putting them in a scholarly essay, because I do believe a lot of quotes are completely taken out of context. But who cares? Use quotes for your own peace of mind. Even if the situation of the author was different, the emotions were the same.

So the next time you find your feelings to be simply indescribable, look up a good quotation resource and feel at ease that someone "gets you" or "knows where you're coming from."

Monday, September 6, 2010

Tasty Tuesday - Roasted Potatoes and Frozen Veggies

Ok people...for the past few weeks I've been harboring a deep fear of winter. Not because of snow or ice or freezing miserable-ness, but because of food. See, I started this weight loss journey in late April...right when fresh fruits and vegetables were becoming bountiful. Now that fall and winter are approaching, I just don't know what I'm going to do without fresh fruits and veggies at my fingertips.

Life is hard.

So today, I embarked on a frozen/canned adventure. I'm really not a fan of canned ANYTHING. When I was younger, pretty much everything I ate came out of a can. Vegetables, ravioli, spaghettio-os, etc. That's probably part of the reason I ended up being over 200 lbs. Canned goods can harbor all sorts of nastyness, but I'm a broke-ass 22 year old with limited options. Here's how I made the best out of a non-ideal sitation, in preparation for winter cooking:

Roasted Potatoes and Frozen Veggies


-1 can whole new potatoes (find a kind with very little or no added salt)
-Frozen Veggies (I used a California medley: broccoli, cauliflower, and carrots...but you can use whatever the hell you want to)
-Garlic powder
-Creole/Cajun Seasoning
-Salt and Pepper
-Olive Oil

Pre-heat oven to 425 degrees.

Drain and rinse a whole can of potatoes. Cut up any larger potatoes to whatever size you like...I ended up halving most of mine. Add in desired amount of frozen vegetables. I ended up using about 1 can add less for fewer servings or add more for more nutritious and numerous servings. Honestly, I just used what was left in the bag. Chop about 1/4 cup of onion. Put these ingredients in a mixing bowl and toss with about 2 tbsp of olive oil.

Spread mixture out on a tin foil lined cookie sheet. Season with salt, pepper, garlic powder, parsley, and cajun seasoning as desired. Really, you can season these however you want. I love cajun seasoning because it always brings something unique to the table. And I'm obsessed with New Orleans.

Roast in oven for 7-10 minutes. Flip veggies and re-season as necessary (note: I used enough seasoning the first time around so I didn't have to add any more). Roast anther 5 minutes or so until tender.

In my opinion, this is a quick and easy side dish you can make year-round. If you're making this in the summer, I highly recommend using all fresh ingredients. Adjust the cooking time accordingly - it will take longer since your potatoes aren't already cooked.

I also considered adding shredded cheese to the top of this in the last minute or two of cooking, but had already had enough dairy for the day and really didn't need the extra calories. I bet it would be delicious though!

Mamavation Monday 9/6

Hello ladies!

The past few weeks have been a little bananas for me, with me quitting my job and being in class all day for two weeks straight. That said, since August 23rd I've gained 3.8 lbs. Totally lame.

The first week of class I did great with packing my lunch...the second week, not so much. I got to know my classmates better and went to get lunch with them instead. I could have made way better choices, but didn't. I was also studying like crazy and fell victim to late night snacking...another bad choice.

Pretty much the only good thing I did last week was drink lots of water. I was constantly sipping it through class.

Hopefully I'll get a job as an SRNA soon, so I'll be able to establish a routine again. Looking forward to that day!

My goals this week are to try to avoid eating out, particularly fast food. I think that's what really killed me last week. I'm convinced a homecooked meal, no matter what it is, is better than most fast food options. Since I'm not working, I'm going to try to work out more as well. School has taken a priority these past few weeks, but my nursing assistant class is over now, so my days aren't as busy until I start working again.

Hope you all have a fabulous week!