Thanksgiving weekend and birthday with friends

I know I fell behind on my posts with Thanksgiving and my birthday but I am catching up! I had a great long weekend!

FRIDAY

Joe spent most of his time on Friday hunting so it was a mommy and Liam day. Liam still wasn’t feeling well so we stayed home all day and snuggled a lot.

When Liam was napping I spent some time cleaning and decorating the house a little with Christmas decorations.

That is pretty much the extent of our Friday…we didn’t do much which was perfect after a busy holiday.

SATURDAY

I started the morning with my 8:15 Zumba class. It felt good to get a good workout in after the holiday feast.

Then it was home to hang out with my boys. Liam was feeling much better and actually had a good night of sleep which was great.

During his nap I got ready for the evening and then once he woke up brought him to my parents for a sleepover. Of course he was so good for them and had fun playing with grandma, grandpa, and cousin Judah.

We went to Acme Comedy Club with my friends for my birthday celebration. We had dinner there and then went to the show. I am so thankful for all my friends who came to celebrate with me.

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I am also thankful for Joe for making my birthday special this year and every year.

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The show was really good. The main girl was quite strange but the two guys before her were so funny. It was a really fun evening and a great way to celebrate my golden birthday with some of the best people I know!

SUNDAY

We actually slept in until 8am. I can’t even believe it but it really felt great. I went and picked up Liam from my parents and we all had a lazy morning.

Then Joe’s parent’s wanted to go out to brunch so we headed to our favorite Rusty’s. I had a breakfast sandwich. When we got home it was Liam’s nap time so he went down and I’ll admit I headed straight for the couch. It was a very lazy day.

Joe’s mom stopped by the house later in the day to drop off my birthday present which was so nice.

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The rest of the evening was spent relaxing and being lazy. Seriously some of my favorite days are spent doing nothing but hanging with my little family.

Hope you had a wonderful weekend and were able to enjoy some extra time off.

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My Golden Birthday!

Well yesterday was my golden birthday! It was really the perfect low key day. I used to imagine my golden birthday as this crazy celebration but now that it is here I wouldn’t have had it any other way.

What is so neat about this day is that it is also my mom’s birthday. I was born on my mom’s golden birthday (crazy right?). We always try to do something special together. We kind of dropped the ball on plans this year and procrastinated so we kind of had to wing it! Nonetheless it was a really fun day!

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I started the morning with a workout (surprise surprise haha) and used my new myzone belt that Joe’s parents got me for my birthday. I love it and it really made me push it during my workout!

Then it was time to shower and get ready. I stopped to get coffee on the way to my mom’s because well it’s my birthday and I wanted coffee! It was delicious!

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Then we headed to go get manicures and pedicures. It was very relaxing and my nails were in desperate need of some pampering.

We weren’t sure how much time we had for lunch so we went for quick and easy. We ate at Acapulco. Of course the chips got us. We got the yummy cheese dip. So good. We both got the same chicken salad which was good too but I couldn’t eat much after filling up on chips.

Then we went to the movies. We weren’t sure which movie to see because none really stood out to us. We decided to try out Rules Don’t Apply and that was a mistake. It was okay but not great. It was hard to figure out what the plot was and really was just a strange movie. But we were in the comfy lounge chairs and so it was okay.

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Then it was time to head home. It was a really fun girls day and next year we will try to plan ahead a little more than we did this year.

Once home I picked Liam up from daycare and we spent the evening playing and then after he went down Joe and I watched the Packer game (and I worked on this blog post).

Happy Birthday Mom! So happy to have spent the day with you and love you very much! 

Thankful for my health!

I am so very thankful for my health and my new found healthy lifestyle. So I thought now would be a good time to share about my health journey. I am so thankful for all the support and changes I have been able to make in these last few months and those who have been there to motivate me. It has taken a lot of hard work and dedication and definitely not always perfect days but I’m committed to always doing my best.

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Some results:

Since August I have lost over 10 lbs bringing me below my pre-pregnancy weight. This is a huge accomplishment for me and honestly I can’t remember a time other than high school that I have weighed what I do (disclaimer: I did not weigh myself at all in high school or college). I know weight isn’t everything but this is a big deal for me.

I have also lost inches on my waist, hips, and chest. I am down 1-2 pants sizes which again is a huge accomplishment for me.

I feel amazing and I actually feel healthy. I have never felt this healthy before. I’ve tried all kinds of things for my health but right now I feel amazing, and healthy, and strong, and confident. My energy level is up, my happiness is up, and my mood is up (win-win-win!).

How I got here:

I have so many things that have contributed to my new healthy lifestyle and I am thankful for all of them.

Young living essential oils: I love essential oils and I am so thankful for them because they have helped me get off of my allergy medications. I use them for pretty much everything!

Isagenix: This is a new part of my routine. I started this summer and really got committed more in September/October-ish. I seriously love the products and the shakes. The flavor of the shakes is amazing and I honestly love my morning shake. Also the support group that I am involved in with Isagenix is amazing with recipes and encouragement. I could seriously go on and on about the products but long story short: I LOVE ISAGENIX!

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Exercise/Zumba: I am so thankful to be able to teach Zumba at Snap Fitness. I’m also thankful to be able to use the gym at my work over my lunch break. Both have allowed me to stay physically fit and active. I love being able to get 1-2 workouts in almost 7 days a week. It helps me in so many ways!

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Healthy eating: Joe and I have really changed the way we look at food after watching the documentary Fed Up (highly recommended). We have chosen to eat in more and make healthy meals. We also make sure we have healthy snack options. This has made a huge difference for both of us.

Overall:

I am so thankful for all of the above that have helped me get to where I am. I am also thankful for the people who have been so supportive of me during this time. Especially Joe who has always been encouraging and supportive of the choices I make for my health. I am also thankful to my close group of friends who are so supportive. I am thankful to my coworker/boss/friend Jenna who has been supportive of my health goals, helps me with Isagenix, and exercises with me at work. Even though Liam doesn’t know it I am also so thankful for him for opening my eyes to see that I want to lead by example for him.

I truly am so motivated and inspired to be a better version of myself every day. I hope that people find this helpful or inspiring but mostly I just wanted to share what has been working for me.

Have a wonderful holiday!!

First snow of the Season

This weekend was super busy and flew by! We were jam packed with things to do and we had our first snow! We didn’t get much snow at all at our house but it was pretty to watch it come down from the sky (I didn’t save any pictures though—sorry!).

FRIDAY

After work it was snowing so we all spent the evening in. Joe was heading up north to hunt for the weekend so he wasn’t eating dinner with us. I decided to make Liam and myself cauliflower crust pizza (we had this Thursday as well but I still had the ingredients and wanted more) for dinner. Liam wasn’t a huge fan but I chowed! The caprese pizza is so yummy!

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After Liam went to bed Joe headed north and I watch Gilmore Girls. I am on season 5 and I am trying to power through all 7 seasons so I can watch the new Gilmore Girls that comes out Nov. 25th. I know I won’t be done by then but I am getting close! I really love the show!

SATURDAY

Today is opening day for gun hunting in Wisconsin so it is also the annual doe-on-the-go craft sale day! Last year my mom, Liam, and I went to the sales. He basically slept in the carrier the whole time and was so good.

This year my mom, my grandma, my cousin Kara, Liam, and I went. To be honest we were so busy that I hardly took any pictures so I apologize in advance for that!

I was worried about how Liam would do be he did great. He took only a 45 minute stroller nap (usually takes a 3 hour nap) so I was worried but he was still so good and so happy.

We went to the Phoenix Grill in Baldwin for lunch and it was so yummy. Liam decided he wanted to show off at lunch so he was showing his muscles, clapping, giving knuckles, doing itsy-bitsy spider, etc. He was busting out all his moves. So cute!

We didn’t get home until after 3:30. I tried to see if Liam would take a little nap but he just ended up playing in his crib so we headed to my parents to see my nephew and two nieces. The sunset on the way there was so pretty!

The kids are all just so cute together.

Liam was helping Uncle Blake work on one of his videos.

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Then it was my best friend Molly’s mom Kelly’s surprise birthday party. She is also Liam’s day care provider. So we headed back into town to join in the celebration. Liam was so tired by this point. Although he was still behaving really well for the long day, we didn’t stay too long because he needed to get to bed. However it was pretty adorable that Kelly was holding Liam and chatting at her birthday party.

Joe had decided to come home from up north and hunt in town in the morning so when we got home Liam was able to give him a big hug before bed time.

Joe and I watched more Gilmore Girls and then headed to bed ourselves.

SUNDAY

Joe went hunting in the morning while Liam and I did our regular morning things. Once Joe got home I had to run to the store to get ingredients for my Thanksgiving dishes and a few other items.

Once home from the store we had a big brunch with eggs, hash browns, and sausage. During Liam’s nap we cleaned the house a little and I was able to decorate with a few Christmas items. I love the new little tree I got from the craft sale.

Joe went out hunting again in the afternoon and then we had to go to my brother’s birthday party. They had snacks and treats. It is always fun to get the kids together and just spend time as a family.

Then again it was home for a quick bed time for Liam, the packer game and then bed for us.

I hope everyone had a fun weekend and stayed warm. Have a great week and a wonderful Thanksgiving!

The weekend with a teething child

Well as you can see by the title of this blog post that Liam was been working on a tooth all weekend. He is usually a very happy child and overall he still was but he had his moments this weekend.

FRIDAY

After work we went to my parent’s for dinner. Liam thought it was so funny that both of us wore hats.

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We got to see Uncle Blake for the first time since he got home from tour with Sum 41. Liam was excited to see him.

My dad was flying his mini drone around the house. Marley wasn’t too thrilled but it but Liam enjoyed watching it. Sorry the pictures are kind of dark.

Liam had story time with Grandpa. It was so cute!

Then it was home for Liam’s bed time and Netflix date for Joe and me.

SATURDAY

We spent our morning together and then it was off to Zumba for me. Joe took Liam to the post office to get him a passport. I had to meet them there after Zumba because both parents need to be present. His passport picture is so cute!

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We stopped at my parent’s after applying for the passport to see Judah. Judah and Liam played together and it was the cutest. Judah had to check Liam’s heartbeat.

Judah also held Liam’s hand as he walked Liam to the toys. Adorable!

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We went home for lunch time and nap. After nap we were going to go to the park with my mom and Judah but it was a little chilly so we just ended up going back over to my parent’s to play more.

The boys got some more story time with Grandpa. Lucky boys!

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Then again it was home for dinner, Liam’s bedtime, and Netflix date! Joe and I have been watching Narcos and Gilmore Girls. I have been hearing so much about This Is Us that we decided to watch the first episode….we love it!! We are watching so many shows now! But we love them all.

SUNDAY

Joe went out hunting early in the morning so Liam and I spent the morning together. He had fun playing with Marley. He seems to have just found out that if he takes her toys and runs she will chase him. He had so much fun doing that.

Once Joe got home I went for a quick 2 mile run and did a 2 minute plank (planking is hard but so good). I did not want to do it but it felt so good once I was done.

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Then Joe was off to hockey so it was me and Liam again. He had lunch and then went down for his nap. During his nap I cleaned the kitchen a little and started looking at family Christmas cards on Shutterfly (is it that time already?!?!).

The Packers played but we didn’t get the game at our house and it was Liam’s nap time so we didn’t get to watch but sounds like it wasn’t a very good game.

After hockey Joe went back out hunting. Once Liam woke up we had to make a quick trip to the store to get ingredients for a potluck I have at work on Tuesday.

Did you see the moon?? It was huge and so pretty!

Joe’s mom stopped over to see Liam quick. Then it was Liam’s dinner time. He is really such a good eater. He has been working on using a spoon and is getting pretty good. Although most of the time he prefers to hold the spoon and use his free hand to eat.

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Then it was family play time. Liam loves being chased and scared so Joe and I take turns getting him. However he had a pretty rough night and was so sad. Pretty sure that tooth was bugging him.

We ended the weekend with Liam’s bedtime and some more Netflix.

Our weekend was extremely eventful but it was very nice to just have a slower weekend. Hope you had a great weekend and a wonderful week ahead!

Greek Yogurt Whole Wheat Muffins

I wanted to make some low sugar muffins for Liam. Just something quick and easy for in the mornings or on the go. I found this recipe and Liam approves!

Greek Yogurt Whole Wheat Muffins

Makes about 24 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 2 cups whole wheat flour
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 3/4 teaspoon salt
  • 1 teaspoon cinnamon
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1 1/4 cup non-fat plain Greek yogurt (the recipe I found calls for full-fat but I only had non-fat and they still turned out great)
  • 1/4 cup maple syrup
  • 1 egg
  • 1/4 cup olive oil
  • 1/2 teaspoon vanilla extract

Directions

  1. Preheat the oven to 375 degrees Fahrenheit and line a muffin tin with muffin liners
  2. Whisk the flour, baking soda, slat, cinnamon, and nutmeg together in a large bowl. In a smaller bowl, combine the Greek yogurt, maple syrup, egg, olive oil, and vanilla extract.
  3. Slowly pourt the wet ingredients in to the dry ingredients and use a spoon to gently fold the ingredients together. Do no over-mix. The batter will be very thick (almost like fluffier cookie dough).
  4. Spoon the batter into the muffin cups and make for approximately 15 mintues, until the tops of the muffins are set. Watch the muffins closely, so as not to overbake.
  5. Allow to cool and enjoy. Can be enjoyed topped with creamy peanut butter, coconut butter, or a smear of butter.

STORAGE SUGGESTIONS: Store any leftover muffins in an air-tight container for four to five days. These muffins freeze well but they also seem to go bad rather quickly when stored in the pantry. I recommend freezing some of the muffins right away if you don’t think you’ll go through all of them within four days and storing all of the remaining muffins in the refrigerator.

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Note: This recipe was adapted from Peanut Butter Fingers

A beautiful November weekend

We had a wonderful weekend enjoying the higher than average temps in November. Joe spent most of the weekend hunting and coaching hockey so it was me and Liam most of the weekend. We had a lot of fun!

FRIDAY

I had the day off so Liam and I had a lot of quality time together. We started our morning with a 4 mile run. I have only run that far 1 other time in my life so this was a huge accomplishment for me.

Friday after Liam’s nap we went to the park. It was so nice outside that we needed to get out and enjoy it.

Liam had so much fun walking around the park and exploring. He is just so curious about everything and needs to see everything that is happening. It is so cute!

After the park we had dinner and play time at home. We even went for a quick walk with the neighbors. Then it was bed time for Liam. Joe was at the cabin so I spent my evening watching Gilmore girls and relaxing.

SATURDAY

I started teaching Zumba Saturday mornings at Snap Fitness. Since Joe was up north I brought Liam to my parents while I taught.

Once we were home we went for a quick walk. Then it was time for the Badger football game. I got Liam to snuggle me for like 2 seconds and watch the game. Then he was off running around playing with his toys.

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Joe had a hockey game in the afternoon and then went out hunting.

It was another really beautiful day. After Liam’s nap we went to the park again. He again was really curious and was running all over the park.

This time we checked out the climbing wall and he tried to fit into it like a puzzle piece. So funny!

He had so much fun playing on all different parts of the park. And swinging too of course.

When we got home we went for another walk. It was just too nice out not to get another walk in.

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We kept Liam up a little later than normal to prepare for Daylight Savings. He was very tired come bedtime.

We spent our evening relaxing and watching our shows on Netflix (Narcos and Gilmore Girls).

SUNDAY

Joe headed out hunting early in the morning. Liam slept until 6:30am which was good considering the time change. He was pretty cranky come 9am so we headed into town.

We went for a 30 minute interval run/walk. I did 2 mins running 1 minute walking for 30 minutes and it felt good. After that my mom met us at the park.

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I decided to go to a different park this time since we had already gone to the other park twice this weekend. Liam loved it.

He really liked the rocking dinosaur. He did great sitting on it by himself and rocking it. He is getting to be such a big boy!

He even went down the slide for the first time all by himself.

There was another climbing wall at this park so he had to check it out again. Grandma helped him climb up high. He thought that was great.

It was another fun and beautiful day at the park.

Liam had lunch and took a nap once we got home. He was exhausted after running so much at the park. Joe had another hockey game in the afternoon and then headed out to the woods again after.

Liam, Marley, and I spent some time outside in our yard playing. Liam loved chasing Marley around and kicking the leaves.

Marley and Liam really do love each other. It is so cute to see how they interact together now that Liam is a little older.

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Then it was time for the Packer game, dinner, and then Liam’s bedtime.

The weather was so amazing this weekend. I hope everyone was able to enjoy it and get outside. Wishing you a great week ahead and happy Monday!

 

 

Healthy Pumpkin Spice Protein Muffins

I made the most delicious pumpkin spice muffins over the weekend. I even added my Isagenix protein powder to give them extra protein and vitamins. I hope you enjoy them as much as I did!

PUMPKIN SPICE PROTEIN MUFFINS

Makes about 12 muffins

Ingredients:

  • 1/3 cup melted coconut oil (can use extra virgin olive oil instead)
  • 1/2 cup maple syrup or honey (I used organic maple syrup)
  • 2 eggs, at room temperature
  • 1 cup pumpkin puree
  • 1/4 cup milk of choice (I used unsweetened almond milk)
  • 1 teaspoon baking soda
  • 1 teaspoon vanilla extract
  • 1/2 teaspoon salt
  • 1/2 teaspoon cinnamon, plus a little extra for sprinkling on top
  • 1/2 teaspoon ground ginger
  • 1/4 teaspoon nutmeg
  • 1/4 teaspoon allspice or cloves (I used all spice)
  • 1 cup whole wheat flour
  • 3/4 cup Isagenix pumpkin spice isalean powder**
  • 1/3 cup old-fashioned oats, plus more for sprinkling on top
  • optional: nuts, chocolate or dried fruit (I did add a few white chocolate chips)

**if you do not have the protein powder you can add 3/4 cup whole wheat flour…they lose the protein and vitamins but are still really yummy.

Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 325 degrees Fahrenheit. Either line the tins with muffin liners or grease the tin with butter or non-stick cooking spray.
  2. In a large bowl, beat the oil and maple syrup (or honey) together with a whisk. Add eggs, and beat well.
  3. Mix in the pumpkin puree and milk, followed by baking soda, vanilla extract, salt, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, and allspice (or cloves).
  4. Add flour and oats to the bowl and mix with a large spoon, just until combined. if you’d like to add any additional mix-ins like nuts, chocolate, or dried fruit fold them in now.
  5. Divide the batter evenly between the 12 muffin cups. For these muffins it’s okay to fill the cups a little higher than you normally would. Sprinkle the tops of the muffins with a small amount of oats followed by a sprinkle of cinnamon.
  6. Bake the muffins for 23-26 minutes, or until a toothpick inserted into a muffin comes out clean.
  7. Place the muffin tin on a cooling rack. These muffins are delicate until they cool down so it’s best to wait until they have cooled down to remove them from the tin. You might need to run a butter knife along the outer edge of the muffins to loosen them from the pan if you did not use liners.
  8. Enjoy the muffin as is or with a spread of nut butter or regular butter.

 

Storage suggestions: These muffins will keep at room temperature for up to 2 days, or in the refrigerator for up to 4 days. They keep well in the freezer in a freezer-safe bag for up to 3 months (just defrost individual muffins as needed).

Notes: Recipe adapted from COOKIE+kate

MAKE IT DAIRY FREE: Simply by using a non-dairy milk of your choice

MAKE IT GLUTEN FREE: Bob’s Red Mill gluten-free all-purpose blend works well instead of whole wheat flour.

 

Trick or Treat 2016

Happy Halloween! I hope everyone enjoyed this fun and scary holiday. This was Liam’s 2nd Halloween and I couldn’t think of a cuter costume than him being a monster….and he was adorable!

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We started with a trip to my work in the morning. I had the day off but my work was having a little Halloween party so I asked if Liam could visit with me. He was such a good boy during the party and warmed up to everyone pretty quickly.

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Liam is working at mommy’s work haha!

Then it was home for lunch and nap time. Liam took a nice long nap. Once he woke up it was go go go!

First we went to his daycare for a quick stop to say hi and show off his monster costume. Then it was off to my grandparents. They were so very happy to see him.

Joe had to go to hockey practice and was going to meet up with us after. Liam and I went to my parents and while there gave Liam some dinner before moving on to the next adventure.

We went to Joe’s sister’s because she has a big Halloween get together with friends and family and pizza and fun. Joe’s mom met us there. The other kids already went out to trick or treat so we hung out for a little while until Joe came.

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We walked to Joe’s parent’s to see Joe’s dad and then to Joe’s aunt and uncle’s house.

We then went back to Joe’s sister’s. All the kids were back and it was crazy!

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We made one more stop before we called it a night. We headed to the Greer’s to say hi.

We were all very tired by the end of the evening. On the right home Liam kept saying “nigh-nigh.” He was ready for bed.

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It was another fun Halloween! So happy to have my little monster to show off! 🙂