morning glow juice

IMG_3066This juice almost matches my dark orange walls!  I’m not happy with the picture but Austin really wanted to drink this juice so I could only take a quick snap shot.  My friend Kate sent me a pin yesterday and said this recipe reminded her of me.  I had to try it.  I’m always talking about getting my glow on!  I have been drinking GREEN juice for weeks now and a change sounded like a great idea.  I didn’t follow the exact recipe because the quantities sounded like it was for an entire family.  This is what I put in ours and I always add the chia seeds.  Austin siad he loves the chia in there because it’s like boba;)

7 carrots

a knob of ginger

2 gala apples

5 wedges of pineapple

the juice of half a big lime

and two spoonfuls of chia seeds

BEST juice yet!  However it takes a lot to make two glasses so this one will be a treat every so often.  Not too sweet and nice and tart!  Thank you KATE!

I’m back – Now Let’s Do This!

Be kind to yourself, be patient, you will find your answers. Love who you are right now—even if right now isn’t a place you want to be—you will always be you—start to appreciate yourself! You will feel so much better! And do not compare yourself to others. You are on your own special road. Be well my fellow travelers and know your path is a good one.”  –LINDA SILVA PALLESCHI-

Hello friends and family!  I’m back.  I’m back on the healthy train.  You see I can be totally honest here because why not!  On January 1st I proclaimed good and balanced health!  My feet were hurting, I was struggling with depression and had lazy syndrome.  So I began to drink more water, walk more and cut out some of the crap.  I wasn’t trying to be a super model or anything (clearly that is not the case) But I was trying to get my feet to stop hurting and my mood to improve and my life style to reflect a healthy example for my one and only girl.  However I know I’m not alone in the struggles to KEEP IT UP. I think I lasted until around my birthday which is in May.  And mind you the weight coming off wasn’t a huge amount during that time.  I started at 180 and I got down to 170 or so.  So it took me nearly half a year to lose just 10 pounds but it felt like more because I was walking with intention and my inches went down and I began to feel better and I didn’t want to come home each day from work and sit in my dark room, or lay on my bed and do NOTHING.  Because folks this is what I often do.  I come home, feel overwhelmed and just go into my bedroom and lay on the bed, close my eyes and try to ignore my to-do-list.  Then about the time motorcycle man is ready to come home I may hop up, make our bed, vacuum some floors and do the dishes.  Then make all sorts of excuses as to why I feel like NOT walking.

Last week my friend Shauna texted me.  “Do you want to join the Body, Mind and Spirit Challenge?”  She had done this once already with great success and said it was really easy because it was real life stuff and not only did her challenge include making better food choices it included a spiritual aspect, spending time in the word with prayer and meditation it also included paying it forward in a sense, doing good deeds for strangers and of course daily exercise.   All the good stuff she did added up to points so she had a goal to acquire her points each day, she was on a team and didn’t want to let the team down but in doing this challenge she realized it made a huge difference in her life.  She is no longer in a size 10 pants and she figured out how to squeeze in exercise to feel better.  She will be handing those down to me when I get out of my size 12 which I’m totally excited to get some jeans out of this deal.

Actually in the images I’m about to share I’m wearing my size 10 pants, which I can zip up AND button but I should not be wearing in public.  They don’t quite look so great nor do they feel that great.  But I decided I would wear them for all my pictures.  You know when your pants get tight and they sort of begin to flood up.  This is how I feel in these pants,  plus because they are sort of low-rise, my butt crack easily shows when I sit down and my muffin top spills out over the top…DOES NOT FEEL GOOD.

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I’m not embraced to say I’m starting today at 177, my hips are a nice curvy 43-1/2″  my waist is 37-1/2″ my bust which seems so dang busty is at 41″  I was always really flat growing up and even when I got married had to pad my bra so after kids they bursted into melons and wow, it’s just a trip because I never ever thought they would get like this.  For me they seem big.  okay so onto the right arm at 12″ and the right thigh at 22″.  And when I look at these pictures I’m about to share again I actually don’t  think I look so bad.  However I have that little depression back and the lazy syndrome but my feet don’t hurt anymore so that’s good.  Plus the muffin top, that just feels uncomfortable in clothes.  It makes it so I don’t even want to try clothes on actually.

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IMG_7913I always feel such great support and cheer from the readers of my blog.  I thrive on community and encouragement from people.  It’s just how I seem to do best.  So this challenge seems like a right fit, a good life style.  It’s for 8 weeks and we will see if my body transforms in that time.  My biggest hope is that my spirit improves that I will be more productive in my life after work and not so lazy.  Plus constantly striving to be a better example to my girl and in lots of ways in her speech at least I feel some of it sinks in when she uses words like, “I just want to be healthy” or when she draws pictures of us together and writes the words “walking together miles and miles to get healthy”  Which reminds me, our shared blog Life in the 7 Cea’s has also taken a back seat.  Maybe we can rev that up again too.

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I know this is so much to read and sorry about that but I will finish with this.  Today I feel empowered because although I can beat myself up over and over about how I have failed so many times, there will never be success unless I just keep trying again and again again.  Never give up.  So I try and I don’t give up and that is when battles are won and success begins to happen.  Because it WILL happen if we just keep at it.  I know so many of you women can agree with me and are nodding your heads up and down.  And if you feel like reading more please visit Mortal Muses Guest Spot with my friend LINDA SILVA PALLESCHI    post about a really neat lady I have been gifted to know through photographs and personal email exchanges and I admire her greatly and when I read her truth I’m also inspired because I feel just like her about myself.  Just like her!

Chicken Soup Really is the Best Medicine…maybe

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My mom taught me as I’m sure lots of mom’s and grandmom’s taught us girls and boys….chicken soup heals!  So when motorcycle man came home from work sick with his eyes all glassy and droopy like Garfield I knew chicken soup was in our future.  When I was little I remember Campbell’s chicken noodle.  According to my mom, I was rarely if ever sick as a kid but when under the weather, my working mom in the early years fed me Campbell’s and later when she had more time she would make our chicken soup from scratch.  She used thick chewy noodles and her soup was so yummy.  However for motorcycle man I used his mom’s recipe for chicken and dumplings because this is what he grew up on.  This recipe was passed on to my mom-n-law from her mom-n-law, Rich’s grandma Joyce and it’s very simple with few ingredients and I have found we at times make this soup in the winter especially if on a budget because it’s filling and is very inexpensive to make.

IMG_5972The way Rich’s mom makes it is by boiling a whole chicken and using the chicken’s own juices as the broth, she adds carrots and celery, salt, pepper and sometimes parsley.  The dumplings are made simply of flour, salt, pepper and egg with the broth of the soup.  That’s it.  I cheat and buy boxed chicken broth and already roasted chicken from Costco.  I did however use our organic home delivered carrots which were super sweet and tender and the last of my homegrown parsley from the garden.

IMG_5977Motorcycle man is still not feeling too well but hoping the rest of the family minus the vegetarian can pre-medicate so they won’t even get what motorcycle man has.  Well, Abbie started it to be honest but since she is a youngster it doesn’t get her down as much.  She didn’t miss any school over it or even skip a beat really and she is already all better. REPEAT….”I WILL NOT GET SICK, I WILL NOT GET SICK.  I’M NOT GOING TO GET SICK” so take that!

I was also very delighted to find that today on “a cookbook a month” they also talked about the benefits of chicken soup (sort of) what a cool coincidence.

Woman Aware and Choosing

Our assignment was to write our facilitator a letter to introduce ourselves as an adult-daughter, a mother and a wife but at the same time I thought those were titles of what I do (sort of) so this is what I wrote;

As you, Sandi read through some of your notes and shared some of your own story, I thought….this is going to be very, very difficult.  I may even cry sometimes and this will stretch me and this will help me to grow.  After all, I can only be the best version of me.  Someone actually said that too this first night.  Yep, best version of me.  Shy, reserved yet having a big heart and finding the gift of encouragement very easy.  I’m a great friend who encourages my friends to follow their dreams, to love and accept themselves, to not be afraid.  Yet I myself do not follow my dreams because I’m too afraid and I don’t really accept myself fully. The strongest things I heard on the first night are the K in our THINK acrostic  as in “Know this, God LOVES YOU, just as you are” It also made a whole lot of sense the part about how “we teach people how to treat us.” I get that.

honor love respectI don’t have the gift of talk but I do have the gift of words.  I’m a good adult daughter and I do all the right things, even when I don’t want to.  I’m a good wife and I do all the right things even when I don’t want to and in both these relationships I withhold information or as you like to use the stronger word lie.

I’m a great mom, I’m fun, I’m adventurous, I’m honest, I’m loving, I encourage them to follow their dreams, I dance with them, I sing with them, I draw with them and I feel like I can be myself 100% completely with these children who love me no matter what.  I often think if I could be like this in ALL my relationships I would be so much better off. 6940422035_18d70b66f8_bI wouldn’t harbor anger and resentment I wouldn’t feel hurt, I wouldn’t pick my skin because it’s the only relief I find now a days.  I keep it all bottled up inside and I just do what’s right and I’m always pleasing and always accommodating and I like to play the entire court. I’m always a good listener too and if I trust you, I tell you my story.  I need to be here.  I just do.

Love your new friend and student

Tracie West

the real truth

I posted this image here at one point but also in a private workshop class and one woman said, notice in the reflection, your legs are smooth. I like the idea of that because I do know this is temporary and there will be an end to it.

And this is just a guess but I’m guessing some of us women feel a whole like I do.  Always doing the right thing even when our hearts are not in it. Never really complaining, never expressing our true feelings on a matter for either A) not wanting to hurt someone’s feelings or B) feeling rejected.  So we just say what we think they want to hear and do what they want us to do and go about our days.  I’m not saying all women, I’m saying some.

Strange, life is amazingly strange

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I’m guessing if one is a blogger and one has children that one might just blog about their child on their birthday.  I have three children.  I have two spring babies and just one fall baby and technically I know he is really a summer baby but in my mind the moment it turns September, it’s fall.  Right here in Southern California September is up there as one of our hotter months of the year, but let me think what I will think, to me the entire month is fall.  He is my fall baby.  I have three, I have two A’s and one D.  He is the one D.    I have three, two righties and one lefty.  He is my lefty.  I have three, two free spirits and one of great discipline.  He, this D, this lefty, this fall baby….he is my one of great discipline.  I joke lots saying “I want to be like Dylan when I grow up.”  It’s hard not to say because he has all the qualities I do not.  I have never had to make him do his homework.  He just does.  He does what he knows he needs to do, he does what he knows is required.  When he was little he shared a room with his big brother.  He was the one who desperately wanted his own space.  Why?  To keep it clean.  A few weeks ago he asked if I might get him some cleaning stuff for his face.  I did.  He tells me yesterday, “I have not missed a day mom, I wash my face twice a day since you got me the stuff” Me, I often forget to take off my make up at night.  Are you getting the picture?  But this doesn’t mean he is not fun.  He is full of fun.  He pranks me nearly every day.  He video tapes me without me knowing and performs silly off the wall crazy stunts while he is secretly videotaping me to see what reaction I will give.  He LOVES a reaction. I would say our most common ground is that we are both dreadfully shy yet completely insane with our behind closed-door behaviors.  And the other really, really big thing we share in common.  We share the same faith.  This common ground creates a bond that cannot be broken.  These two very big things help us to get each other even though we are nearly nothing alike.

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 He began high school yesterday.  The class he is the most excited about?  Finance.  He can’t wait to get into the meat of that class.  In fact he already let me know as soon as he gets a job he will save 10% of his earning in a savings each week.  He said if he really manages his money just right he can be a millionaire.  And if anyone can, it will be him.  I believe it’s no mistake he was named after his uncle another well-disciplined, fun-loving, lefty, man of faith who also just happens to know a lot about finances.

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 He shows me how to do hard things.  I learn from this kid.  I learn from him.  He is a gift to me.  It has been an honor to be his mother.  A complete honor.  Happy Birthday D-man.

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Oh yeah and he is athletic. and these days you might find him doing hand stands simply because he can.

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 or yoga type poses without even realizing it

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The birthday part of today is good.  He had his birthday breakfast.  We are going to his favorite Chinese restaurant tonight and he got that robe he has been wanting (shhhhh, he hasn’t opened his gifts yet)  But on a far stranger and sad note.  Austin was in his first car accident today.  This is how the phone call was received.  “Mom?”  “Yes Austin”  “It happened”  “You were in a car accident?”  “Yep”  And that was that.  He is okay, his two friends who were in the car with him are okay and this is good considering he was sitting at a stand still and was hit by a woman going at least 45 miles per hour.  He was ready to make a left hand turn, had a panic situation when he realize he started to turn left on a green rather than wait for all the cars to clear, the bug stalled and he basically just braced himself for the hit.  He has been a wreck himself the rest of  today and is the type of kid who is very hard on himself.  I mean Rich and I knew this would happen, it just happens right?  At least that’s what I’ve been told.  I totalled out my first car when I was about his age.  I knew when I took pictures of the pretty new/old bug there would someday be a different story.  His world has been rocked, the car shouldn’t be driven at this point.  Rich got the bug home but at 30 miles per hour and with lots of crazy noises.  The kid is wondering how he will get to work now, how he will see his girlfriend, he is devastated that he has “cost” us even more money you know all those normal thoughts.  I hate when things like this happen to people I love. I told him it’s okay, everyone is alive, a lesson will be learned and it will give you problem solving skills, what to do next?  Stay tuned.  Life, it’s still very, very good.  Just one of those things.  unfortunately since it happened on Dylan’s birthday we will not be able to forget the date of his first accident.  And you see we are a family of celebrations.  So we do not celebrate the fact that he crashed his first car, but we celebrate in the fact that he had the wits about him to jump out immediately to see if the person who hit him was alright, that he knew exactly where his insurance card was and that he in his own hand writing got her name, address, phone number, license plate, make model, and drivers license number which happened to be expired and out-of-state but still it was his fault for being the one in turning left.  He even sounded calm on our phone call.  He kept it together when it mattered the most.  The woman even complimented us on our son, She told Rich “you have a good boy here”  So this is what we celebrate.  The lesson learned.

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In the glory days

photo (2)Her she sits today.  even the passenger door got buckled from the impact but I have to say these awesome German-made cars are like mini tanks, could have been far worse and his buddy Kris the one who was sitting up front there, could have had it much worse.

Back to work and real life

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Vacation is all over.  I wonder why they go by so very fast.  We did have a wonderful time though.  We wrapped it up with our Sunday at Balboa where the kids went parasailing.  We couldn’t go on the boat with them so I only have the shot of them pulling away from the dock.  All three went at once with Abbie in the middle and they all came back smiling big and said it was lots of fun.  Abbie actually wished the ride could have been longer.

the boatThere they go.  Abbie has a smile.

tail gateafter the sail, we ate dinner off the back of the truck.

Yesterday back to the grind.  I got up early met my pals for our morning workout.  I had proclaimed Monday as meatless a few weeks ago so yesterday my oldest, his girl and I went shopping for our dinner.  They thought a nice meatless Mexican themed meal would be perfect.  Maddy made the salsa homemade and it was full of flavor and if you like spicy, it was for sure spicy and so very good.  I made the cowboy caviar or as Joyce calls it Texas caviar (either way…it’s amazing)  we used Maddy’s mom’s recipe because this is something they eat on a regular basis and I had no idea in fact I had the hardest time even locating black-eyed peas, I finally asked at the third market where I was told it was a canned vegetable.  I was looking in the beans…. I guess I should have known better? They look like a bean to me even though they are called peas.  But I suppose they really are peas?  I still have no idea.  I should though considering my mom sort of raised us on them and also I like to cook up a batch on New Year’s but I start from dry bean…. Or is it dried pea? My pictures were taken in a rush and with my iPhone so I’m a little disappointed in that part but the meal itself was very good.  Just good old bean burritos with lots of fresh toppings, lettuce, the homemade salsa, no cheese for the vegans but Dylan and Dad couldn’t have a burrito without it.  No meat.  Yes! No cheese. No.  Don’t mess with their cheese.   Austin made homemade guacamole; we had olives and chips to dip into the salsa or the cowboy caviar.  I could eat that stuff by the spoonfuls and it’s all pretty good stuff for you.

cowboy caviar

 the cowboy caviar that I will for sure make again and again, thanks Joyce for the suggestion

Maddy's salsaMaddy’s homemade salsa

cooking the beansAustin tending to the beans

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I’m disappointed in my progress with my healthy lifestyle journey but remember I have a problem with this instant result kind of world.  I expect my body to do the same.  Patience and persistence.  My two big P words to focus on this month.  Not giving up.  Nope I’m not.  My good friends keep reminding me of it being a lifestyle.  I have made much better choices with water over soda and sometimes salads with oil and vinegar type dressings but I did eat those fried cookie dough balls at the fair and I have dabbled in some not so righteous food here or there.  If I can get healthy and still dabble than it’s not all that bad. Cause I’m not giving up sweets.  I’m NOT.  I’m just a little stubborn.

photoThe support I have in my health, it’s really big.   I like getting up early because of the common goals we share and the fun we have.

37 days

52 days ago I was feeling very depressed, tired, not motivated and my jeans were really, really tight.  The scale read 179.

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37 days ago not long after I wrote the post about being frustrated that my pants were feeling very tight I began a fit camp.  This camp motivated me to get MOVING again!!

35 days ago I was evaluated by my health coach.  She weighed and measured me, calculated my BMI and boy were my eyes opened WIDE!  For instance the one that blew me away the very most was my body age was that of a 59 year old woman.  I happen to know women who are 59 that have a body of that of a 30 year old, so I’m not knocking the age, but when I find out my physical body is 16 years older than my actual age, it’s a little freaky.  Well, a lot freaky. I found out that my body fat is at 46.8%, that means nearly half my body is fat.  I found out that my Body Mass Index is at 30.5 when normal  Body Mass Index should be anywhere between 18.5 and 24.9!   Um, not only do I need to be moving I need to add healthy eating into the mix.  My health coach who happens to be very smart and extremely motivating woman says it’s 80% nutrition and 20% exercise.  Oh, gosh. A food lover changing their diet??  Someone who lives for a good piece of chocolate cake?

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 28 days ago I decide to drink one shake a day using Herbalife products.  Filled with all sorts of vitamins and protein.  One shake is about 217 calories and is packed with stuff like Vitamin A, C, D, E, B6 and B12, it has calcium, zink, magnesium, iron, potassium, copper, selenium and dietary fiber.  Since I normally skip breakfast I thought starting my day with one shake packed with all this stuff would be a good start. Now although having one shake a day was a good start it’s what Herbalife calls the maintenance plan.  Being I have a ways to go before I’m in a healthy range, I decided to add two shakes a day and a multi vitamin and something called a cell activator.

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So….13 days ago I decide to introduce these two shakes which does include by the way real food.  between shakes I’m eating healthy, snacks.  I love fruits and veggies and I love to use things out of my own garden.  It’s recommended to eat a high protein snack but I eat lots of whole foods, fruits and veggies.  Like one ingredient type foods.  For example a raw zucchini, I have a ton of it.  Or a tomato, half an avocado…sometimes a whole avocado.  I try to up my water intake and also drink a tea made by herbalife.  When it’s time for dinner I make a healthy dinner or if I’m in the mood I eat In-N-Out or subway or if we are invited to dinner I eat what they prepare for us.  I want to be able to live normally and healthily.  If I go too extreme it will not last as a lifestyle.  My goal is to reach healthy weight and then only have one breakfast shake a day.

In total since I first began my movement which has been exactly 37 days, this is what has changed.

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I went from 177.6 to 172.8  that’s 4.8 pounds gone almost 5!

My body age went from 59 years old to 57 years old

My BMI went from 30.5 to 29.8

My chest went down a half an inch

my hips and butt nearly went down a full 3 inches, 2.75 but that’s close enough to 3 for me

my thighs shrank by .25

and my waist also .25

the fat around my organs isn’t so bad to begin with which means for the most part I eat healthy but that too went down one full number.

So this is not leaps and bounds but it has only been a little over a month and so as motorcycle man likes to say, slow and steady, it’s the way to go.  I get frustrated a little cause I want bigger and faster results but I’m also the person who runs on the treadmill 20 minutes and gets back on the scale and wonders why it’s not gone down.  My health coach tells me to give it at least a full 90 days, that’s when real results will be seen.  I’m feeling them now but 60 days from now I will probably see a big difference as well, hopefully I can hold that plank for even longer than a minute by then.

wonder powers

The support within my fitness group keeps me going, the people are so supportive and inspiring themselves. They are also a crack up.  My health coach is amazing and fit camp is free, I only pay for the product I consume.  I’m excited about my journey.  I love where I’m headed.  My goals are as follows:

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number one, I want to be healthy

number two, I want to heal

number three, I want to be strong

My body will find it’s healthy weight I really don’t care about the number but right now it’s a a way to see the change that’s happening by stepping on the scale every so often.

And btw, I still bake things like homemade Oreo’s, zucchini brownies and pies.  I just limit what I get to eat of it. Like one cookie out of the batch, or one brownie.  I can’t live without sweets.  I have tried.