Happy Birthday to My Firstborn!

ethan-bday-5

If it wasn’t for this little boy, Losing Weight After Baby would have never happened!  After all, I wouldn’t have had the baby fat to lose.  (I guess without my son my blog would have to be call “Losing Weight in Your 30s” instead since we all know how easy it is to pack on the pounds)

My son has looked forward to his birthday for months and it’s finally here.  As it’s been said about raising young children, “The days are long but the years are short.”  Have you found that to be true?  These years with my son have flown by and I treasure being a mom to my wonderful son. 

We go to a year round kindergarten, so he’s already started.  When my husband or I drop him off at school, he points to his cheek.  He still wants a kiss from us!  I love that so much!  Fast forward to the tape, and that kiss will turn into a cool glance/acknowledgement when he’s in high school I imagine 🙂

I read something in a magazine from No Greater Joy Ministries that caught my attention: 

To the tired mother, repeating the same chores day after day, struggling to keep peace with the children, aware of her fading youth and her failure to have achieved the self-expression she expected…today is just another burden to be borne.  Whereas to the mother with a vision for eternity, today is an opportunity to be God’s nanny, teaching His kids to honor Him.  She doesn’t carry the burden of personal ambition.

That quote reminded me that all the little things that go into raising my son are not mundane or useless.  If I can parent with the big picture in mind, I’ll remember that I’m raising a future hero, great husband, loyal friend, industrious worker, lover of God, and so much more.  It takes the pressure off the daily stresses, and puts the emphasis of the joy that is coming.  So happy birthday to my sweet son – I’m so thankful to have him for these years to love him and teach him!

Are Your Girlfriends Making You Skinnier or Fatter?

I’m almost 32 weeks pregnant now and I’m content with my weight gain (which has been about 30 pounds).  It’s funny though, I find myself comparing myself to other pregnant women.  If I see other women who have gained more weight, I think “Phew, I’m doing really good!  Let me have a bowl of cookies and cream!” 

But if I see a really fit pregnant woman (like the one I saw yesterday at the doctor’s office), I think, “Wow, I better do one of those pregnancy workout videos!”

Isn’t it easy as a woman to compare yourself to other women?  We tend to see where we fall in comparison to our friends, and gauge our success based on that, instead of our own personal goals.

two-ladies-eating

If your girlfriends love to eat fast food and are carrying an extra 10+ pounds, you’re going to feel pretty comfortable joining in the party.  But if your girlfriends eat veggies and run marathons for fun, you’re probably going to order differently (healthier) when you have lunch together.

Statistics show that your friends play a big part in your weight loss journey.  So ask yourself – are your friends (the ones you see most often) encouraging you to lose weight or to gain weight?  Of course, no one is going to say “Come on, let’s pig out and gain 5 pounds this month!”  But what do they say with their actions?  With their eating and exercise choices?  Do they have a victim mentality?  A sarcastic attitude about losing weight? 

If so, you may want to limit your meal times together until you reach your ideal size/weight.  Would that be a sacrifice?  Absolutely!  But when attempting to lose weight, do you need all the help you can get?  Absolutely!   

You want to be around friends (especially at meal, snack, and coffee time) who are going to encourage you to make wise choices!

Asian Beef with Snow Peas

asian beefYou can serve this Monday’s Meal over brown rice – yum!  The recipe says it’s done from start to finish in 15 minutes.  Find this recipe and others like it on allrecipes.com

Ingredients:

  • 3 tablespoons soy sauce
  • 2 tablespoons rice wine
  • 1 tablespoon brown sugar
  • 1/2 teaspoon cornstarch
  • 1 tablespoon vegetable oil
  • 1 tablespoon minced fresh ginger root
  • 1 tablespoon minced garlic
  • 1 pound beef round steak, cut into thin strips
  • 8 ounces snow peas

Directions:

In a small bowl, combine the soy sauce, rice wine, brown sugar and cornstarch. Set aside.

Heat oil in a wok or skillet over medium high heat. Stir-fry ginger and garlic for 30 seconds. Add the steak and stir-fry for 2 minutes or until evenly browned. Add the snow peas and stir-fry for an additional 3 minutes. Add the soy sauce mixture, bring to a boil, stirring constantly. Lower heat and simmer until the sauce is thick and smooth. Serve immediately

Who Decides Your Weight Loss Fate

monkey-drawingA friend of my son’s gave him an adorable picture of a….what do you think it is?  I think it is a monkey.  I mean, look at that TAIL!

Well my son is convinced it is a bear.  He tells me over and over, “It is not a monkey.  It’s a bear. Just the tail is wrong, but the rest of the body is exactly like a bear.”

It reminded me of something I read in Dale Carnegie’s classic bestseller, How to Win Friends and Influence People.  He wrote something like “He who is convinced against his will, is of the same opinion still.” 

No matter how many times I try to convince my son that it’s a monkey, he still believes it is a bear. 

You know, it works the same with weight loss.  Someone (like me) can try to convince you to eat less and move more and lose weight, but unless you come to that conclusion yourself, it’s no use.  YOU have got to decide for yourself, with your own free will, before you will see lasting changes in your life.   No one else can convince you.  The ball is in your court!

Is a TB Test Safe During Pregnancy?

My son is in kindergarten so I’d love to spy on him help in the classroom.  One of the requirements is having a TB test.  I can’t remember when I had a TB test last, so I wonder at 31 weeks pregnant, if it’s okay for me to do now.

I looked around the Internet and still wasn’t sure.  At my OB/GYN appt yesterday, the doctor said it was perfectly fine.  So I’ll be on my way to the school nurse soon, and hopefully I’ll get to help out in my son’s class a few times before baby arrives.  In case you’re wondering if it’s okay, my doc says it is, and of course, it’s always great to check with your doctor too!

How Goals Have Worked for Me

Mastermind-arEvery August for several years, my husband and I have attended a fabulous personal growth conference called Mastermind Summit, put on by Brian Buffini and Buffini & Co.  It’s in San Diego and has featured such notables as Bill Cosby and Sinbad for entertainment, and Zig Ziglar, Neil Armstrong, Lou Holtz, and Jack Canfield as speakers. 

The friends we’ve made along the way have noticed something about me:  I’m usually pregnant at this event. 

  • In 2004, I was about 36 weeks pregnant with my first. 
  • In 2005, I was pregnant with my Angel Rose, who we lost at 26 weeks.
  • In 2006, I was pregnant with our second daughter. 
  • In 2008, I was pregnant but then miscarried at 12 weeks.
  • And now in 2009, I was 29 weeks pregnant with a little girl.

It’s especially meaningful to be pregnant at Mastermind since a family goal my husband and I set was to have more children.  And Mastermind is also about trying again when you don’t succeed, and we’ve been trying!

The beauty of Mastermind is that it includes goal writing in the actual conference.  They don’t leave it up to chance that you will write goals at home.  They make you sit down and write goals in 5 important areas of life:

  • Spiritual
  • Family
  • Business
  • Financial
  • Personal

Then you write short, mid, and long range goals in each area.  10-10-10 they call it.  10 day goals, 10 month goals, and 10 year goals. 

So for example, my 10 day personal goal was to do 2 workout videos.  My 10 month goal was to lose my baby weight.  My 10 year goal was to exercise at least 2 1/2 hours each week. 

What goals can you write down today?  What do you want to accomplish in the next 10 days?  10 months?  10 years? 

Mastermind-wide

Do You Have Time to Clean Your House?

condo interiorI was shopping for some toys on Craigslist and found a toy I wanted to get for my son.  When the seller opened her door, I was struck with how neat and clean her home was.  The carpet looked freshly vacuumed.  The countertops were clutter free and sparkly.  While we were picking out the items for sale, my 2 year old daughter blurted out “I have to go to the bathroom!”  The lady was gracious to offer her bathroom which was…you guessed it…clean as a whistle. 

Okay, even when I have guests over, my house is never THAT clean.  When I returned to my messy home, I felt dejected.  How can I have sparkling countertops like that lady?  Granted, she only had one child who is 9, and I have 2 children under 5 and pregnant with another.  But enough with excuses.  You know what I did?  I cleaned my kitchen sink first, and then the kitchen countertops.  There…I felt better.

The next day, I cleaned the bathroom upstairs.  And you know what I realized?  I may not be able to transform my house into that woman’s house overnight, but slowly I can clean up an area at a time, and that’s okay.  Without her example, I would not have been motivated to clean up my own home.  But with her welcoming, clutter free, clean home in my mind, I wanted to do something to make my home a little more like hers.

I share that story because sometimes we can feel helpless in the face of housework, parenting, work, and of course, losing weight.  Instead of being paralyzed by how far you have to go, just take a few baby steps in the direction you want to go.  Those baby steps count and will do wonders for your attitude. 

So if your house is a mess, just tackle the kitchen sink today and tackle another small area tomorrow.  If your eating is out of control (too much junk food for instance), skip one serving of chips today.  Take baby steps – you can do it!