Wednesday, October 5, 2016

Current Favs



1. Dole Sesame Asian Salad Mix. I buy the family sized bag ($6.50 at HyVee) and split it into three lunches. I LOVE the mix of flavors, dressing, and crunchy things; the variety makes this fun to eat instead of boring like a normal salad... I've eaten this as part of my lunch every day for the last two weeks. The Chipotle and Cheddar version is a close second fav.

2. Dunkin' Donuts. I'm seriously obsessed. Last week there was a COMPLETELY FREE item every day of the week through their Perks App. Plus a free coffee after the Huskers get 350 yards of offense.. and basically free stuff all the time. (I've received a dozen FREE donuts THREE times now too. Not through the app or anything, but I order a drink and then they have leftover donuts to give away... SCORE.) I go way too much.



3. All American Boys.I read this book for my Young Adult Literature grad class... and I am a bit obsessed. Written in alternating perspectives, Rashad and Quinn, All American Boys tells the story of police brutality and racial inequality through the eyes of the black victim and a white observer. I loved how the authors made this story complex; the characters' voices were real and honest, and it leaves you pondering many things during this time of Black Lives Matter protests and National Anthem kneeling. Check it out!

4. Peach Pear La Croix
I'm glad I reconsidered my previous dislike of La Croix and jumped back on this bandwagon. LOVE it. Favorite flavors: Cherry Limeade, Grapefruit, Mango and Peach Pear. (Didn't love Coconut or Cran-Raspberry.) ALDI carries their brand of this in the liter sized bottles for only 59 cents each! And it comes in like 4 flavors.



5. Where do Diggers Sleep at Night?I checked this out from the library since Luke is in a truck-car-construction phase, and it was a hit! He points to every vehicle and says "Digger sleepin." "Ex-ca-va-turrr sleepin." "Boat sleepin." His little voice is so cute... I can't get enough.



Friday, September 23, 2016

Random 7 QTs

1. I miss blogging, but I normally blogged during lunch or part of my plan time at work, and this year I have a new prep.. so I have NO extra time whatsoever. At home, I'm not normally by my computer much and the Blogger app is yucky. However, I'm shooting out a quick hello into the universe today!

2. Norah is 4.5 months old. She got croup early last week, a quick dose of steroids, and acted her normal happy self. BUT HER SLEEP has been wrecked. I'm blaming it on the croup.. or maybe the 4 month sleep regression.. or her new ability to roll over.. I don't know. But she had been getting up ONCE a night for over a month.. and now we're back to like every 2-3 hours.

This has also led to her sleeping in our room.. because if she wakes up before 2am, I'm still in a major sleep haze and I honestly fall asleep while nursing her on the footstool in her room. Which sort of scares me, so I just bring her back into our room. Agghg.

3. Luke is freaking hilarious. He talks ALL the time and every day says a new word I didn't even know he knew. Yesterday he pointed at a motorcycle, proudly declaring, "Mo-ter-cy ... cle." He'll be two in LESS THAN A MONTH (Wha???) and is obsessed with all things truck: dump, mail, trash, moving, fire, monster, etc. And cars. And boats. And planes.

4. We joined a different parish (St. Vincent de Paul), and I'm sort of loving it already. I filled out an "interest" survey last week, and I've already had THREE people contact me about various ways I wanted to get involved. I'm pumped because I'm signed up to sing at one mass in October and I would've never gotten around to setting that up by myself for months. Saturday we're going to a "Pumpkin-Painting Pajama Party" sponsored by the Parents of Young Children group... we're hoping to meet some potential couple friends. Ha.

5. Our AC broke, Scott had to get two new tires, and my UNO grad class bill was due... all in the same week. WHY MUST ADULTING BE SO SPENDY? Seriously though.. a whole month's paycheck later...

6. I cannot get motivated to get back on the clean eating and exercising band wagon. I did SO WELL for two months.. and now I've been stuck for the last two. I hate how lazy I am some times!

7. I realize Christmas is forever away... but I LOVE buying presents for people. It's definitely one of my love languages. I've already been curating some Pinterest board wish lists for everyone in my family =) Thanks to Kohls' crazy awesome sales, Luke will be getting a 3 truck shirts and a set of construction equipment pajamas for his birthday.

Wednesday, August 17, 2016

Oh, just a little update!

Little miss Norah is already 3 months (and some change) old. She's almost growing out of her 6 mo clothes and is on the fast track to size 3 diapers. Luckily for me, she's recently began getting up only ONCE per night.. anytime between 2:30-5. I haven't quite figured out what helps her sleep until 5, but I can totally handle a once per night feeding!



But... I'm back to work as of last week which means: pumping. GROSS. I hate pumping. Mainly because 1) I miss out on any socialization time with my co-workers since I can't eat lunch with them and I lose my plan times to pumping too (which means it's harder to get stuff done!) 2) Seriously less clothing options 3) So much stuff to transport and clean.



BUT. On the positive side: 1) I figured out how to pump while driving on my morning commute = time saver! 2) I'm currently making just enough so I haven't had to supplement yet.... we'll see how long that can last.



Luke and Norah are at a new daycare: an in-home! The lady watches a little 18 month old boy 2 days a week and a little girl (one of my friend's daughter, actually) the other 3 days. Plus she has a boy 1 month older than Luke and a 4 year old. So really, her kids and another 3. So far, it's great! I love that they're with the same people every day, Luke gets to sleep in his own room for naps, and the price! The only downside so far is that it's 10 minutes PAST our house in the opposite direction from work. On a -perfect- traffic day, it takes me 39 minutes to get there from work *crying face*.

Still trying to whittle away the baby weight... and man, it's a slow process! I've lost half of what I'd like to lose so far. (and I started really paying attention to food/exercise at the end of May.) My realistic goal is to be at my goal weight by December. Adjusting to being back in school has been hard though... I don't have nearly as much time to plan, meal prep, cook, shop, etc. as I did in the summer... nor enough energy after working all day! So, I'm still trying to figure out how to make it all work in this new schedule. Tips?



Also... is anyone good at errands? Maybe I need to let things slide, but there's usually at least 3 stores I need to go to each week! I go to ALDI for 90% of our groceries, but I haven't had good luck with meat and a few other items there, so I also go to HyVee. But then I also usually need something from Target (like lightbulbs or diapers) but I don't like buying all my groceries at HyVee or Target because I'm cheap and ALDI is like 50% cheaper. So do I sacrifice time? or money? OH THE DECISIONS A MOM MUST MAKE!

Last note. I bought a "bottom round roast" since it was on sale. EASIEST and tastiest crockpot dish ever. Rubbed garlic, salt, pepper, thyme on the roast. Put it in the crockpot over cut up onions. Added red potatoes, a bag of baby carrots, packet of onion soup mix, and 16oz beef broth. Delish.

Sunday, August 7, 2016

What I Read This Summer


The Walls Around Us: The unreliable narrator(s) threw me for a few loops! I knew something was off in how I was perceiving the story but I could not figure it out on my own until all the pieces came together at the end. This book switches between two characters: Amber, who is a prisoner in an all-girls youth detention center, and Lena, who is a star ballerina with a sketchy past. We know that Lena's best friend was convicted of murder before being sent to the youth detention center and she died a month after arriving... but the story is told mostly three years past when the girl died. It's rather complicated. The story was intriguing, though the "paranormal" aspect that appeared toward the end wasn't explained enough for me. Overall = B




Everything I Never Told You: Recommended by many internet lists, I finally got around to reading this novel. And it only took me 3 days. Though marketed as a mystery, that part of the plot unraveled so slowly at times I forgot that the characters were trying to figure out why their 16-year-old sister/daughter was found dead at the bottom of a lake. I loved this book for its rich characters, how their complex pasts were shared in ways that illuminated their present life choices, and their complicated (but so real) family dynamics play out amidst tragedy. Ng also weaves intense themes around beloning, gender, and race that were nuanced and realistic. Overall = A



My Sisters the Saints
I'll admit I am still only on chapter three, and I technically started reading this in April. Campbell shares parts of her life and how she connected with various saints at those times. Overall: It's an interesting read with conversational tone. I'd recommend it... I just read non-fiction really slowly. 



The Good Girl: Lately, I'm all about short chapters, and this book delivered. Each chapter not only switches between characters, but they also back and forth in time which allows for the mystery to unfold in a unique way. Lots of twistiness, loved the ending. Overall: A-


Eight Hundred Grapes: Your basic chick-lit novel. It was a quick read with interesting characters, though a predictable plot and annoying ending. I would recommend it if you're looking for an easy beach read. Overall: B-



The Luckiest Girl Alive: The unreliable narrator left me second guessing everything, constantly searching for what the big "twist" would be. I thought this book was entertaining and kept me reading, though the big secret event was revealed to near the middle of the book... the last 100 pages seemed almost unnecessary or too long. Overall: B



Hatchet: I'm teaching a new prep this year: 9th grade Basic English. It's a group of 7 boys who are really behind; they struggle to write a complete sentence and their reading level is around 2nd -3rd grade. Thankfully, I have a bit more freedom with the curriculum, so I tried to find some high interest books that were at a lower reading level. Hatchet fit that niche! A 12-year-old boy, Brian, is in a small plane, flying with just the pilot over Canada to go visit his dad when the pilot has a heart attack. Brian ends up surviving the plane crash and Hatchet tells his 50+ day survival story. (Did I really like it? No... but I think my students will.)



Among the Hidden: 
Another book I read as a possibility for my basic class. Set in a future dystopian America, families are only allowed two children, but Luke is a "third." At the age of 12, he's only been out of his house for a few minutes at a time and once a new development is built close to their home, he isn't allowed to leave the attic..... until he sees a girl peeking out the window in a house that already has two children. Luke eventually sneaks out to meet her and then things get crazy. Overall: Quick paced read that I really enjoyed! I think my students will like it too since dystopian books are all the rage. 


I also started all of these books and quit before page 50... 
I'll Give You the Sun
One in a Million Boy
Between Shades of Gray
Winger
The Lightning Thief

Friday, July 8, 2016

7 QTs


1. Iced coffee with a splash of almond milk. Preferably from Dunkin Donuts. I also bought the Toddy Cold Brew system; it's super easy (& cheap!). I'm having fun experimenting with the best coffee concentrate to water/milk ratio. 


(He's had a haircut since these pics)
2. Luke's voice. He is talking all the time now though at least half is undiscernable.  But it's so cute! And he acts as if what he's saying is totally clear. He's also starting putting a few words together like : Daddy work. Where go? Mama coffee. Also, he's totally mastered the goodnight kiss + luh you. Adorable. Cue heart melt. 

3. My parents are moving from Council Bluffs to a neighborhood in NW Omaha only 5 minutes from me. I'm pumped! The house is awesome and on a golf course and it's going to be great.

4. Oh yeah. Scott got a new job too! It happened right as Norah was coming so there were some potential paternity leave timing and insurance issues, but his new job (Nebraska Med) was awesome about it!!! He loves it so far.



A few of her newborn pictures :)
5. Norah gets baptized on Sunday! (Hopefully the gown Luke wore fits... because due to lots of family scheduling conflicts she's getting baptized over a month after he did. If it's too small... a white GAP dress will come to the rescue.)

6. I'm headed to a childhood friend's wedding tonight in Okiboji. I'm excited to see some elementary friends I haven't seen in forever!!! (And I'm only taking Norah, so it'll almost feel like a mini vacation since I won't be wrangling Luke the whole time.)

Latest ALDI find. They're SO GOOD. And good for you (as far as desserts are concerned :) )
7. A brand new ALDI opened up just a mile away from my house. I love that I don't have to trek 15 minutes away to get to one anymore! (Plus the aisles are bigger, it's super clean, and I haven't found any mold on any produce yet.) And.. their carts? HUGE! I can take both kids and even leave Norah in her carseat in the cart and STILL fit a normal weeks worth of groceries around her =) 


More quick takes over on Kelly's page. 

Friday, June 24, 2016

Final 21 Day Fix Results

The nitty-gritty deets: 8 pounds and 4.5 total inches lost (I took measurements on my arm (stayed the same), chest (-2), waist (stayed the same), hips (-.5) and thigh (-2).

Shakeology: I drank Shakeology every day for the last 19 days (Usually 5 oz coffee, 5 oz almond milk, ice, chocolate shakeology, banana, scoop of organic natural peanut butter, 1 T chia seeds). Other than it being rather delicious and feeling like a special dessert shake, I don't think I really noticed any difference in energy levels, curbed cravings, etc.

Is the product worth $5/day? No. But buying it allowed me to be in an online support group that I did need. Without the group and others posting their meals and sweaty selfies after workouts, I would've quit much sooner. Will I be buying another bag of Shakeology? No.

Bummers: Even though I've been rocking it and lost 10 lbs before vacation this week, still none of my clothes fit. (I literally have 1 pair of jean shorts that fit because I bought them 2 weeks ago at Old Navy. Otherwise, only gym shorts and leggings fit. Neither of my nursing friendly dresses or skirts fit either...) So, I ventured to Target and Walmart in hopes of finding at least 2 shirts and a pair of shorts to take on vacation and let's just say it was rather discouraging. XL swim suits were too small, size 14 pants wouldn't button... I know they're just irrelevant numbers, but when I'm used to wearing an 8 from most stores, thinking about buying a size 16 was too much.

Getting exercise in is still my struggle... if I don't go on a walk asap when the kids get up, then my only other real option is to do a workout video while they both are napping. But that's also the only time I have to really get anything done (dishes, baking, prepping dinner, cleaning, ME TIME, napping.. you know :) )

The Non-Scale Victories #nsv: My self-discipline really surprised me! I've never stuck to a diet change for more than a week. Ever. So the fact I made it over THREE WEEKS is astonishing. Every day I made choices that I couldn't believe I had the will-power to make: passing up homemade cheesecake and garlic bread at the same meal, not eating my favorite pasta or ice cream at Valentino's, going on a walk at 6:30am to ensure I fit my exercise in that day.. I mean really, am I superwoman or what? =)

As I head into a week of vacation, it's unrealistic to stick to my clean eating 100% because a) eating out and b) we take turns cooking meals for each other, so I will eat what is made for me. However, I do plan on limiting those indulgences and making the meals work for me as much as possible. (Example: When my sister makes burgers, I won't eat the bun or the chips!)

I'm hoping that after another 5 weeks I'll be able to fit into my work clothes!!


I would post my before/after photos, but.. no thanks :)

Friday, June 17, 2016

Week #3

Recipe Notables from the Week
Zucchini Lasagna: Cut zucchini in half length wise and scoop out some with a spoon to make a boat. Thin layer of cottage cheese (or ricotta). Add a layer of meat and spaghetti sauce. Sprinkle with cheese. Bake at 350 for 10 minutes. Super easy.



Banana Muffins: I added blueberries, chia seeds, used whole wheat flour, and made as muffins instead of a loaf of bread. Delicious!! Scott even liked them and normally he doesn't like "healthy" recipe versions.

Buffalo Cauliflower:
Cut up head of cauliflower. Brush with mixture (2T olive oil, 1/4c. buffalo sauce). Sprinkle with garlic powder. Bake for 20 min at 350. Yum!


Chocolate Shakeology
"Almond Joy" =  Add coconut milk, shredded coconut, almond extract. I did not like this... 
"Chunk Monkey" = Add banana, almond milk, peanut butter. This is my favorite... Sometimes I add cold coffee instead of almond milk (if I didn't drink my coffee from the day before =) 
"Banana Split" = Add almond milk, banana, strawberries. Ehhh, okay. 

Exercise
I still need to improve in this area. It's so easy for me to make excuses: I need to nap, it's too hot outside for a walk, too hard to find the time with 2 kids, etc... I did manage 3 walks this week. 

Progress Another 2 lbs down. 8 total since May 31st. I realize this is great progress, but it's so hard when I just want my clothes to fit! I'm still living in workout shorts, leggings, and Scott's L t-shirts. I ventured to Target today, hoping to snag a new swimsuit and a shirt or two for vacation next week to Lake Michigan. Everything I tried on was XL, and everything was too small. So depressing... 

Friday, June 10, 2016

7 QTs: Week 2

Week Two Recap!




ONE. Meal prep
is essential for me staying on track. I have no time to make lunch during the week between the two kiddos needing my attention; also, if I make my husband's lunch then he won't buy it (= save $$). If I don't pre-make salads, I will NEVER choose to make a salad when I actually get hungry, but if it's the only thing already made, then I'll eat it. I also pre-made fruit cups!




TWO. Iced coffee is my new jam. 

THREE. I've been trying to get in my daily walks, but I'm still finding it hard to get everyone on the same page at the right time, etc. I got in 3 this week!

Post walk selfie

FOUR. My Shakeology arrived Wednesday-- it is tasty. My favorite recipe so far: chocolate shakeology + banana + coffee + peanut butter + ice. Now is it worth the exorbitant price of 5.00 a day??? (which is what it costs after tax and shipping.) NO. But I needed a jump start motivator... full review to come. I've only had it for 3 days so I can't tell if it is affecting me or not yet,

FIVE. For our 3rd anniversary we happy houred at Railcar and feasted on roasted brussel sprouts, BBQ pork nachos, and pretzel crusted cheese curds. YUM! Plus I had a fruity martini and a Moscow Mule. Then we played Pandemic and devoured turtle cheesecake. Obviously, none of this was "clean," but it was all delicious and our anniversary was definitely a special occasion that warranted a calorie splurge.

SIX. Total pounds lost in 11 days = 6!

SEVEN. Kid pics!
Caught a smile! She's 5.5 weeks already!

Loving his water table on the deck

Obsessed with his balloon courtesy of HyVee
Happy Weekend!


For more quick takes, head over to Kelly's page.

Wednesday, June 8, 2016

Summer Playlist




There's definitely a certain "feel" to a good sumer jam: fun, care-free, danceable, happy. Here's my Summer Spotify playlist I put on to get me in a groovin' mood =)


1. Can't Stop the Feelin by JT
2. Pride by American Authors
3. Brand New by Ben Rector
4. Better Place by Rachel Platton
5. Rock Bottom by Hailee Steinfeld
6. America's Sweetheart by Elie King
7. Wild Things by Aleesia Cara
8. Oasis by A Great Big World
9. Lost Boy by Ruth B (This is not a normal "summer" song, but I'm obsessed with it and I quite figure out why!)
10. Hallelujah by Andy Grammar


What are your fav songs this summer? I need to add more to my list!

Sunday, June 5, 2016

Day 5

Breakfast: cup of hot coffee, then a cup of iced coffee, quinoa banana bar


Lunch: salad (with carrots, celery, green peppers, craisins, nuts, cucumber) + fruit (grapes, mandarin oranges, strawberries)


Snack: Smoothie (coffee, almond milk, natural peanut butter, 2 bananas, chia seeds, ice)


Dinner: Mexican rice bowl (Taco seasoning mixed with black beans, corn, tomatoes over brown rice + lettuce) and some grapes


Snack: plain popcorn


Workout: none again. Ohmygosh I am having trouble figuring it out with these two kiddos..  (because I only have time to either workout or shower and depending on the day's activities.. sometimes I need the shower!)


* I feel like Norah has been eating on both sides for a long time and still acting a little hungry, so I'm trying to eat more even though I haven't been all that hungry because I don't want to lose my milk!

Day 6

Breakfast: whole wheat bagel (not "clean") with natural peanut butter. Coffee.

Lunch: My parents took me out to Le Peep. It's hard to get something that isn't a salad! I ordered 2 pieces of French toast, 2 pieces of turkey bacon and coffee. I didn't use syrup or anything on my French toast, and it was surprisingly still tasty. And more coffee. Probably too much coffee... (I never pay attention to the amount of caffeine I consume a day when pregnant/nursing; hopefully Norah doesn't decide to be touchy with it.)

Snack: Quinoa banana bar

Dinner: Hobo packet (hamburger, red potato, green pepper, zucchini, carrots on the grill), grapes


Snack: Carrot cake Larabar (I had one of these a few years ago and thought it was so gross. Today, I actually thought it tasted great! I'm excited to try the other flavors I got (lemon cake and cappuccino).


Workout: 30 minute walk with the double stroller.. lots of hills on the route I took today which basically made it an arm workout too.

Saturday, June 4, 2016

Norah is 1 month old!

Norah is getting cuter by the day :)

She sleeps for 4 hours at first, but then is up every 2.5 hours after that. She now wakes up, eats, and immediately goes back to sleep- so usually I'm only up for 15min or so. She takes rockin naps during the day too. Usually a 2-3 hour one in the morning and afternoon. Then the rest of the day she's awake or just dozes for a little bit at a time.

She loves to eat, but is rather lazy and takes her sweet time.

Norah doesn't like the bath or her carseat. She likes being swaddled, sung to, and being worn in the Moby.

She hasn't had a bottle yet because I've only pumped a few times (I. Hate. Pumping.). Tomorrow Scott and I are going out for our anniversary, so my mom volunteered to babysit and give her her first bottle then. Hopefully she eats and doesn't cry the whole time I'm gone. Eek.

Luke likes her 95% of the time. He gets her pacifier if she's crying, throws her diapers away, gives her kisses, and tries to pick her up (before I intervene!).

Friday, June 3, 2016

Day 4

Breakfast: Coffee and Apple Pie Overnight Oats (Combine: 1/2c. rolled oats, 1/4c. unsweetened applesauce, 1/4c. ish almond milk, cinnamon, nutmeg. Cover and put in fridge overnight. Add cut up apples + more cinnamon on top in the morning. Warm in the microwave for 45 seconds.)

I'm not a huge oatmeal fan, but I thought I'd try this anyway... yuck. I ate about 1/3 of it. Then I ate one of those muffins.

Snack: Iced latte with almond milk ($$$, but tasty) from Aroma's at their story time! (They were handing out FREE chocolate chip cookies; I fed it to Luke and didn't even sneak a bite. Go me!)

Lunch: Salad (with carrots, nuts, taco meat)

Snack: Quinoa Banana Bar (I added a handful of chocolate chips-- totally not "approved" but whatever!-- some shredded coconut and some chia seeds too.)
Thoughts: definitely interesting. Chewy texture but the uncooked quinoa adds some crunch. Very filling, good snack I'll probably make again but in a bigger pan so they're not so thick.

Dinner: Smoothie (banana, almond milk, peanut butter, chia seeds, ice, plain greek yogurt)

Workout: None. Again.



Side note: If you have't read Everything I Never Told You by Celeste Ng, you should. Ohmygosh, I couldn't stop reading it. Basic premise: (set in Ohio in the 70s) A 16 year old girl (Lydia) goes missing and the clues to what happened to her unravel slowly throughout the novel, all coming together beautifully (and tragically) at the end. However, I'm not sure I'd classify the book as a mystery only because so much of the focus is on the other family members and their stories. Most of the book tells stories from the characters past in an intriguing 3rd person omniscient narration. I would LOVE to discuss this book with someone, especially the ideas of gender, race and perspective that are interwoven throughout. Go read it!

Thursday, June 2, 2016

Day 2

Breakfast: Smoothie (coffee, almond milk, 2 bananas, chia seeds, plain greek yogurt, natural peanut butter)

Snack: Zucchini Banana Muffin-- They're not delicious because there is little to no flavor-- even with the vanilla, banana, cinnamon and nutmeg. Maybe by flavor I mean there just isn't sugar. Ha. But they do satisfy my bread/carb craving.



Lunch: Salad (with carrots, celery, chicken, nuts) and Fruit cup (strawberries, pineapple, watermelon, blackberries)

Snack: Another muffin

Dinner: Grilled tilapia, broccoli, sweet potato waffles (These were gross. They just didn't have any flavor...)

Snack: another muffin. Ha! Totally an emotional eat... I was stuck cluster feeding Norah for 2 hours, then she choked and threw up ALL over me, her, and my bed. After cleaning everything up she wanted to eat more! By that point it was 11:30 and I was exhausted.. and hungry. So muffin in was!

Workout: 30 minute walk with the double stroller

Day 3

Breakfast: Coffee and Muffin en route to help at my sister's garage sale. (At said garage sale, Luke consistently tried to run into the street!! Ahhh!! Chasing after him sure felt like a workout.)
** Amazingly did not eat a cookie bar my sister had made... yay me!

Lunch: Salad (with carrots, celery, chicken, and nuts)

Snack: Fruit cup (cantaloupe, pineapple)

Dinner: Taco bowl (brown rice, mixed veggies, lettuce, taco meat and a sprinkle of cheddar cheese) -- rather delicious! 

Snack: a muffin

I almost made today a diet pop day, but told myself to wait an hour and see if I still really wanted it. Three hours went by and I had forgotten about it!! # win

I've only drank 50 oz of water though... aiming for around 90.

Workout: none. Oops.

Wednesday, June 1, 2016

Clean Eating Challenge: Day 1

I'm four weeks out from Norah's birth date, and there is still a lot of extra weight hanging around (which wasn't the case with Luke!).

So starting yesterday and until vacation on June 25th I will be aiming to:
1) eat clean -- no processed foods, minimal grains/dairy/sugar, one or two diet cokes a week (techincally not allowed, but if I want to do this as a "lifestyle" change, it's unrealistic for me to give up my diet soda completely).
2) work out 30 minutes a day -- I won't have the "go-ahead" from my doctor for another two weeks, so I'll just be walking (and pushing a double stroller-- ohmygosh heavy and awkward) at the beginning before hopefully doing some at-home Turbo Jam or Zumba videos.

I'm hoping this will sort of "jump-start" some better habits and allow me to see some progress to help keep me motivated! We'll see. Also, since I'm breastfeeding I still need to keep up my calories. I'm not going to ever go hungry, but I am making myself choose to eat an orange when I'm hungry instead of chips.

My goal is also to post most days to hold myself accountable!

Yesterday was Day #1:
Breakfast: Fruit cup (pineapple, watermelon, strawberries, blackberries), Coffee
Snack: More pineapple
Lunch: Salad with carrots, celery, chicken, nuts
Snack: Banana chips + cashews
Dinner: Spaghetti Squash + Garlic Shrimp & Tomatoes + Broccoli