Guilt. I finally nailed it down. It is exactly what has been consuming me and "motivating" me for weeks.

I had a break down Thursday night, as we pregnant women often do, and what I finally heard myself saying was that I'm not good enough and that is what is motivating me to do anything. It's what makes me clean, cook, get dressed, work out, take my kids to the beach and pay the bills. The guilt I feel drives me and it's the most unsatisfying drive I've ever taken. Because once I accomplish a task I've guilted myself through, I'm still worthless. I'm still not good enough and didn't accomplish enough. I've still yelled too much, let the vegetables rot in their drawer in the fridge and I've still laid down for at least an hour every day in the last week.

Living with guilt as my guide has wrecked me. My self esteem has dropped to a dangerously low level. I'm fragile and guarded. I don't want to interact or talk to friends. I don't even open up to my husband as completely as I used to or as I should. I am stunting myself from any kind of growth and success and blocking my heart from valuable relationships. It's miserable.

After my cry, I walked out in to the dark to sit on my lanai. The night was bright and my mind was awake after finally pin pointing what had been poisoning my every day. I started sifting through the painful feelings I was crippled by. I found the guilt and then I found the "excuses". I had convinced myself that any of my short comings were excuses for my lack of skills and poor behavior. I'm pregnant with my fourth kid; so what? I'm exhausted a lot more than usual; boo hoo. I don't feel like eating healthy; that's fine, be fat. My feet are so swollen I need to lay down; okay, quitter.

My self talk was horrifying. I allowed myself NO EXCUSES. The trouble is, I was confusing excuses  with answers. Sometimes, our small short comings are actually just answers rather than the excuses of a failing woman. I had to ask myself, in all those times where I was making excuses, was I giving it my best? Was I trying my hardest to complete tasks and keep my life and the lives of my family going? Or was I cashing out early and skipping out on my daily duties and the needs of the ones I love? I sat in the dark on the lanai and felt the most relief I have in maybe a year, I was doing my absolute best. I could finally, comfortably, honestly say it. I was not making any excuses. I was full of answers. Sometimes the answer is, truly, that we are just tired, worn out, done, finished and in desperate need of putting our puffy, doughy feet up.

And so, where was I going to go with my new found clarity? Straight to the top! Just kidding. Back to bed. But before I fell asleep I remembered my conversation with my oldest from a few weeks ago. After another melt down over a hiccup in his life I asked him, "are you going to freak out, or are you going to fix it?" Of course we talked it through but we both decided that real life is about fixing the problems we are faced with. And side note here, it usually takes a lot longer to fix the problem than it does for a) the problem to occur and b) than it does to just freak out. But even after you're done freaking out you've still got the problem. So stop wasting the energy with the freak out and start off by finding the best fix first.

I was going to fix it. I was dead set. The first thing I would do was reorder my thoughts and start seeing my excuses as answers to my problems. Sometimes the answer to an equation is seen as negative, like the ones listed above, but they don't have to be. They can just be answers. And even though I had answers to problems like exhaustion, swollen feet and more exhaustion, I had to let that be okay in my brain. I had to let my memories over the last 4 months and maybe even a year and a half (for sure the year and a half) be settled in understanding rather than blame.

Then I asked, what will I do from here to continue to avoid this pitfall? I will keep answering the problem. I won't stop doing my best and I will congratulate myself every step of the way.

I know this all seems small. When I had my lanai conversation with myself I felt the light bulb turn on. I felt the peace wash over me. I felt so. much. relief. It may not wash over you now after reading this post like it did me, but hopefully it will remind you to be kind to yourself. To keep doing your best and keep patting yourself on the back for doing it. After all, our best is all we can do. Go put your feet up, lady.


paleo business

I am so floored by my new diet that I am going to blog about it. At this point my blogging is so scarce and erratic that I probably have zero readers but I don't care. I really feel the need to just ramble about this for awhile. Actually I feel the need to shout from the roof tops but ya know.

I started exactly a week ago. I bought the book, The Paleo Solution by Robb Wolf at a friend's suggestion and read it in a few days. I knew after reading all of the scientific arguments and having my scientific, doctor husband read them and verify their validity, that I was officially in a place where I couldn't NOT try the diet. What a poo sentence but whatever.

Basically, I was floored. I knew I needed to clean my diet to clean my body to clean my life. And that is exactly what is happening. I feel clean on the inside and not just because I am pooping more regularly than I ever have before. It's like my body is functioning almost completely properly. I have no bloat, no gas, no empty belly hunger where my stomach wants to eat itself. I have no mood swings because my blood sugar is super consistent. I seriously feel like I could take on the world.

If you aren't familiar with Paleo let me give you an amateur (me being the amateur) rundown. Basically you eat like a Hunter/Gatherer. You consume meats, produce-both fruit and veggies, and nuts. No grains, no dairy, no oats, no corn, no rice, no QUINOA, no beans. These foods are sources of inflammation in your body that can lead to all types of diseases and disorders. Before the agricultural revolution our HG ancestors were on average taller, lived longer, free of cavities, free of auto-immune diseases and were lean, muscular people. Once we started cultivating wild grains for food we lost height, length of life and took on a myriad of different health issues. This is anthropological science not bull. So, the idea is to eat like a HG and feel healthy again by returning our body to a clean, un-inflamed state. If you're curious, read the book. It's actually entertaining!

Some of the benefits of the diet are surprising. I am SUCH a nice mom when I'm not hungry! Surprise! I can't believe how big of a difference this diet has made on my patience levels and my mood stability. I am normally such a snap-to-anger type of person but this has become like a natural sedative. It's a MIRACLE! I've literally been jonesing for wine, weed or any other "bad" substance for months because I've been so uptight. It's seriously been plaguing me! I'm not being dramatic. We're talking, high school party, let's get wasted, slowly walk by the wine isle, day dream of a cold margarita poolside seriousness. Somehow, this diet has allowed me to look at my kids with only love in my heart and mind. Okay, not only, more like 95% but we were at about like 40% so that's a pretty freaking big deal. I mean, come on, if changing my diet can curb my party-hardy cravings and make me a better mother than shiz, I'm never going back!

I, with out trying, have lost more weight. In the last day, I've lost 1 1/2 pounds. Solid. Cool. I also notice a difference in my abs. Have you ever heard of the abs diet? I'm beginning to be one of those "carbs are the devil" people. It's scary. But it's also scary to look and feel THIS MUCH BETTER in only a week! I need to take pictures. I can already tell there will be some serious physical changes.

I wake up with energy. I don't spring out of bed but I don't have to use the heart charger paddles to shock myself out of bed either. I just get up and go. I also don't have puffy under eye bags or trouble taking off my wedding ring which means less water retention.

There are so many tiny things that are good. So many benefits that I can already feel. It's really incredible that food can be this powerful. We don't treat it like the medicine it actually is. I've posted it before long ago on instagram and pinterest but I'll post it again. "The food you eat can either be the safest and most powerful form of medicine, or the slowest form of poison," Dr. Ann Wigmore.

Before I close I will be honest and share that there have been a few hang ups. I cook alot. Not really that much more than I used to but there aren't as many quick fixes. I also can't really eat out anywhere that easily. So accessibility and dishes are a pain but whatever. If you felt this good, you'd do more dishes and skip the fast food drive-through too.

Another bummer was the caffeine withdrawals. Apparently caffeine can produce cortisol in your body which is a bad stress hormone so it's recommended to avoid it. This was bad news considering my daily habit of 1 Rockstar and 2-3 cans of Diet Coke. DAILY. Blurgh. The headache I experienced on Wednesday was up there in the top ranking SOB headaches of my life.

Next downer is the constant feeling I get when I feed my children that I'm poisoning them. Seriously, it sounds insane but after you read the science and learn about the negative effects caused by inflammation from eating grains, you would totally or at least partially see my point. Another poo sentence. Apparently I'm full of shit today. :)

The last negative is the social aspect. I have a holiday cookie exchange coming up and Christmas advent activities planned with my kids and several other things that won't be "traditional" for me because of my "crazy" diet. Luckily I'm still hyped up enough that I feel confident I will finish this 30 days without any "cheats". That was alot of "".

What happens after 30 days? Right now, I honestly feel like I just turned a life altering corner and can never go back but I often eat the words I say, no pun intended. Who knows, maybe I'll end up opening a traditional bakery (something I have literally dreamed about for years) in the next couple of years. I'm bananas. The point is, right now I'm bananas for this diet. I cannot stress enough how amazing I feel and how in control I feel.

It's liberating to take charge of my body and my health and not get "poisoned" by convenience. I wish that anyone, everyone, just someone would try it with me. What's 30 days right? Everyone I've even slightly, smidgeshly convinced says the same thing, "maybe after the holidays." Ya. Maybe. Or maybe never. It's okay. I have a supportive friend and a supportive brother. That's enough for now.

Not to call out my husband or anything but I know that he needs to do this diet too. He is complaining EVERY night about tummy upset and gas and saying, "ugh. I don't feel so good, Booty." I feel bad for him but it's also hard to keep feeling sorry for someone who keeps slamming their hand in the door and crying over it like it was a surprise, ya know? I'm mean. I'll keep cooking him and my kids rice, pasta and traditional baked goods to make up for it.

I'll let you know how the next 3 weeks go because I know you're all dying to continue hearing about paleo. If you have any questions or want recipes or want a supporter in your own paleo adventure just holler.


small fry

Let's be honest. A huge part of why I'm blogging about this is to enter the giveaway for the free iPad mini but another reason is the opportunity it gives me to fess up and be honest about a few things.

When my high school/acquaintances started Small Fry Blog a few weeks ago I went through some strange emotions. I thought, "man, these girls really want to be famous." I also thought, "man, these girls are cute and classy, wish I was too." I even thought, "look at all the cute things they do with their kids, I feel like a terrible mother." It really was a bad start for me.

The truth is, I am a jealous person. I always have been and I'll always struggle not to be. So up until about a week ago when one of the Small Fry Blog creators came to Kauai for a visit, I felt all of this judgmental, childish, rotten jealousy. But once I hung out with this girl, this super cute, truly talented girl, I knew I had them (the creators of Small Fry Blog) all wrong.

Sure, they want to get notoriety and publicity but what talented person doesn't want to be recognized for their talents? It's not vanity or narcissism it's finding joy in sharing your best self with other people. I'm the same way. I LOVE teaching/dancing/performing during Zumba class. It brings me SO much joy I can't even explain it. It also fills me with gratitude that I even get the chance to share my talents in that way.

If I think about my friends or family and ask myself what I really love about them I often think of their talents. My sister in law the seamstress, my husband the driven surfer, or my Grampa the patient optimist. Part of what we love about other people is what they're good at. I'm thankful for the talents of the people I love or the friends I know and I'm thankful for when talented people display and share what they can do.

So, after this big long confessional, what is my point exactly? Only that this blog, Small Fry Blog, is full of creative, cute and crafty ideas that will beautify your life and the lives of your children. It's like a tiny, trendy, extremely stylish magic wand that helps you be a funner and cooler mom. I'm thankful for that magic wand.

I'm so glad that I've been able to shake off my jealousy and judgment and that I had a chance to mingle with such a talented and inspiring mom. Here's to Small Fry Blog, a fun place to visit when you need a boost in the cool department.

Now go see it for yourself.


Pre baby, Baby!

I'm officially to pre baby weight. I'm super stoked. I still want to lose 5 more because I had gained 5 when I got pregnant with Beck. My recent pound droppage has all been due to cutting out sugary treats, sweets and chocolate. By recent I literally mean exactly 8 days. I lost 2 pounds last week by doing nothing more than giving up chocolate and candy and junk. Here are the results in photos. Hopefully it shows. I've been nervous it won't.


extra! extra! wheat all about it

As many of you know I've determined I have a gluten sensitivity. It super sucks but I'm happy to know about it. I figured it out after doing a T.E.D. diet with Beck. He was sensitive to wheat during the first 3 or so months so I cut it out. When his tummy got more solid I started back in on it. I quickly realized wheat and my belly are not friends. Here are some of my negative wheat reactions.

Eczema-flares up SO bad
Stomach cramps
Dark bags under eyes
Hemorrhoids-total overshare but totally true! If you've ever had kids you're not as judgey and for that I thank you.

Is this the end of the world? No. But is it all annoying? Yes. I am at a place where I've decided to treat wheat as a splurge. Whenever I really want that brownie or cinnamon roll or even warm buttery whole wheat toast, I'll go for it knowing it might not leave me feeling my best. Otherwise I'll try to avoid it day to day.

I'm not a wheat hater. I'm not. In fact, it breaks my heart to know this and was very hard to confess and accept. I've always loved baking and consuming baked goods. Lil tangent here, I don't wanna bake gluten free. Like I said, I'll eat it on occasion but I don't want to revamp all of my recipes to figure out gluten free baking. Just not worth it to me. Sorry. I digress. I've kinda known since Tucson but didn't want to accept it. My eczema was SO BAD there and I basically lived on whole wheat toast. I know it's very dry there but still, even with steroid creams it was horrible!

I also believe my parents might be gluten sensitive. Both my parents suffer from belly/bowel issues and discomfort. I wish I could get them off the sauce. I mean wheat. It's so hard to do when everything, everywhere is made with gluten! I feel so bad for people with celiac disease. What a pain in the grass.

So there you have my self diagnosis. How do you handle wheat? Have you ever gone off it as a test run? We'll talk about dairy another day. ;)


coming along swimmingly

Here are a few progress pictures from recently.

The most recent ones are the ones with the orange bottoms and turquoise top. Then go back to last week with the full orange and the week before in the white. Sorry about the nursing pads in those ones. Hehe. Also sorry they're totally out of order. Annnnd yes, that is my baby, who can now roll, laying on the couch behind me completely unsupervised while I take a picture of myself. Mother of the year!

I'm now down to 130 and super stoked. My muscle definition is starting to peak through and that motivates me so much more than the scale.

There you have it. Me laying it out there like it ain't no thang when really, I'm super self conscious. :) Oh! And you should feel super duper privileged to get a shot from the back. No matter how thin I get, those love handles never disappear. It's my own personal food storage I guess. I only posted it because my upper back really is looking better.



I just blew my own mind. But we'll get to that later.

I know this post may end up being a little tragic because I have no pictures of the foods these recipes make but maybe I can add them in later. The truth is, they're all so delicious I never stop eating to take a photo. Ha! Actually it probably has more to do with the fact that my 3 kids allow me approximately 0.2 seconds to eat.

First off my smoothie. It's simple and delish.

Mango Banana Smoothie:
1 mango
1 banana (I like apple bananas but they're kinda hard to find on the mainland)
1/4 cup pineapple juice
1/4 cup vanilla soy milk
2 TBS ground golden flax
Blend it. Enjoy it. I haven't been adding the flax as often since it is a lil gritty although I should because it has awesome health benefits. My good friend Heather also tried it with coconut milk and said it was rockin' which I can totally imagine. 
Servings: 2 
Calories per serving: 120 without flax 150 with it.

The next three are salads.

Summer Salad:
1 cucumber-peeled, seeded and diced
1-2 tomatoes (depending on size) diced
1/4 cup or so onion diced pretty fine
drizzle of white balsamic
Mix it together, refrigerate it and eat it chilled. I like it at the beach. Super refreshing.
Servings: 2
Calories per serving: 68

Steak/Chicken Salad:
3-4 cups mixed greens and/or romaine lettuce
4-5 artichoke hearts diced
4-5 sweet mini peppers diced
some onion to taste
1 tomato diced
3-4 strips of grilled tri tip steak-I get the prepackaged and marinated kind from Costco. I grill it pretty rare and save it in the fridge and then slice off and re-grill strips as I need it.
white balsamic
olive oil
Servings: 1
Calories per serving: 230 (this is with a 2 oz serving of steak)

Grilled Chicken:
2 chicken breasts pounded flat in a big ziploc
olive oil
white balsamic
3-4 garlic bulbs peeled and smashed
fresh basil roughly chopped (I've subbed dried basil or oregano too, still wonderful)
Mix the marinade in a bowl and pour into the ziploc with the pounded chicken. Let it marinade at least till the grill gets hot but longer is okay too. Grill it up a 3-4 minutes on each side. It's quick since it's thin.
I don't have the calories for this. Especially since it is marinated and then the marinade is discarded. I usually just fill in grilled chicken which is about 140 calories for 4 oz.

Strawberry Mixed Greens Salad:
3-4 cups mixed greens
finely diced onion to taste
6-8 strawberries sliced
1/4 pecans roughly chopped
sprinkle of feta or goat cheese (optional but delish)
grilled chicken
honey cilantro lime vinaigrette
Servings: 2
Calories per serving: 140 this is just the salad without the dressing

Honey Cilantro Lime Vinaigrette:
1/2-3/4 bunch of cilantro
1/3 cup vegetable oil
2 TBS white vinegar
1-2 TBS of fresh lime juice
3-4 bulbs garlic (peeled of course)
1/4 cup of honey
salt to taste
Blend it up, admire the green color and adjust the tastes as desired. You know, a lil more lime, a lil more garlic, it's up to you really. This dressing is OUT OF CONTROL! 
Servings: 12
Calories per serving: 108 for roughly 2 TBS of dressing.

Holy Shiz My Pants Watermelon Tomato Salad:
Sliced ripe watermelon
sliced ripe super sweet tomatoes (if you're not growing your own maybe splurge at a farmers market or on some good heirloom ones from the store)
honey cilantro lime vinaigrette drizzled
I don't know the calories for this either. But you can easily add in the tomato and watermelon by using a search and you know the dressing calories.

I about just died when I ate this for dinner tonight. I was making all sorts of sounds. I think my husband might have gotten jealous. ;)

I hope some of these recipes make some of you happy. If you have any questions, shoot.