Monday, March 18, 2013

Luck of the Irish?

My St. Patrick's Day outfit, sponsored by my favorite maternity skirt, which I ABSOLUTELY intend to keep wearing as long as the elastic holds up, and a pair of Spanx, which I also intend to keep wearing as long as I can still pass for slightly pregnant anytime I wear anything that isn't loose and flowing.

The tank top is a maternity find, too, from Target, and I would kind of like to keep buying every color that they make, because I love how long they are. But also? I would very much like to quit wearing maternity clothes because, you know, I do own other clothes that I would like to wear again someday...
Skirt: Motherhood Maternity
Tank Top: Target
Cardigan: Banana Republic (outlet)
(The cardigan! The cardigan isn't a maternity item! That sort of counts, right? Even though I was wearing this cardigan at the end of my pregnancy?)
(Whatever. I'm getting there. There are more non-maternity clothing items that fit me now, compared to where I was at the start of the year. I just really wanted to wear jeans and boots to the St. Patrick's Day festival we went to on Saturday, but that wasn't an option. I'm tired of it not being an option, that's all...)

Friday, March 15, 2013

Welcome Back

Today is a hectic day. Once again, the concept of a deadline seems to be something that most people just don't understand. But, I'm trying to be better about managing my stress. I'm trying to take it all in stride. I'm trying to remember that I can tell people what needs to be done all day long, but I can't actually do it for them.

I'm trying to relax.

And it seems to be going better than I thought it would.

Over the last several weeks, I've realized that I never knew what a miserable pregnant woman I was until I stopped being a miserable pregnant woman. My hormonal tendencies during pregnancy are...not good. I was angry, all of the time. I was annoyed with the slightest little thing. I didn't want to be around people. I just wanted to stay home in my sweatpants and play with Brigid. I honestly thought that nothing would make me happier than quitting my job to stay home with my girls. And honestly? I'm still not entirely convinced that this isn't the case.

My twelve weeks at home were awesome, and I'd have no problem going back to that place in a heartbeat.

But at the same time, I like my job again. I like having responsibilities outside of the home, and I like the adult interaction that being in the office provides. Things are crazy today, but I am not the ball of rage over other people's actions that I would have been six months ago, and that makes me happy.

I'm finally starting to feel like myself again.

It's about time...

Thursday, March 14, 2013

All of the Pretty Necklaces

Part two in my new 'Everything I Learned About Organization, I Learned From Pinterest' series?
(Ok, it's not really a series. But seriously. Pinterest, man...)

The corkboard was an old one that I rescued from an office move, years ago, and I've held on to it all of this time, knowing I would find a use for it eventually. And I did! I'm not sure Steve would consider me needing a place to hang all of my necklaces a valid reason for moving this thing all of the way from Cincinnati with us, but he would be wrong.

I would very much like to find some wall space where I can hang this, but right now, it's sitting on the floor of my closet, propped up against some drawers. And every time I open my closet, I get happy all over again, because...pretty colors! tons of options! necklaces I haven't worn in for-e-ver because I forgot I had them!

(Now, who wants to be responsible for reminding me I have NO! MORE! SPACE! when I threaten to go jewelry shopping again?)

Tuesday, March 12, 2013

Changing Course (Again)

I hate tracking calories.

I hate searching for foods, logging every single thing I eat, and annoying my husband when we go out to eat by spending twenty minutes trying to make sure I've included everything from my meal in my tracker. And I especially hate that the entire process, even though it seems to work in the short term, never seems to be a long-term solution for me, because I get tired of it so easily.

But, my sister-in-law has been using the My Fitness Pal app for months, now, and she looks fantastic. And my mother-in-law has started to use it, too. So has my father-in-law. And so has Steve.

(And here's where I admit that I am a competitive and vain individual. All of the family has jumped on the weight loss wagon because my brother-in-law is getting married in June. And I'll be damned if I'M going to be the family member that ruins the pictures, ok?)

So, in the last two months, I've tried logging calories and activity through my Fitbit, only to be derailed by my typical calorie counting complaints. I've tried restarting the C25K running program, but I've been knocked off course by a nagging ankle injury I got falling down the stairs on Christmas Eve. I tried to go with the strict no carb diet that helped me with my first pregnancy weight-loss, but I'm just not seeing the changes I feel like I should be seeing (Mostly, I think, because I'm eating waaaaay too many almonds for my own good. They're a healthy snack, when you're not eating a thousand calories worth of them a day. Go figure.)

So, I'm back to tracking calories. The key benefit on this app, though, is the food scanning feature, where scanning the barcode with my phone automatically uploads the calorie content/nutritional information, and that doesn't seem nearly as tiresome as manually looking up every little thing I want to eat. I'm hoping that this will provide even MY lazy dieting self with enough convenience to make the process stick this time.

Only time will tell, I guess...
Week nine weigh-in
Weight, as of 1/7/13 (initial BBL weigh-in): 175lbs
Weight as of 3/11/13: 162lbs
Weight lost: 2.5lbs over the past 2 weeks, 13lbs overall
And just so it doesn't seem like I'm ALL doom and gloom on this weight loss process, today was the first day I've actually started to feel a little more like myself again, like I CAN see a change in things from where I've started. I know I've eaten well for the last week. I know I've been able to squeeze in some physical activity for at least a few minutes every day for the last few days. I know that what I'm doing, it's working.
It's working slowly, but it's working.

Thursday, March 7, 2013

My Parents Are THE BEST!

Y'all! My parents bought a townhome on the beach.

I just...I can't even. I am SO excited about this place.

See, we've been vacationing at the same spot in Panama City Beach, FL for something like a million and a half years. And every year, while we were there, my parents would talk about how fantastic it would be to own one of the townhomes in the complex where we were staying. And they would talk to some of the owners who lived there full-time. And the maintenance staff on site. And the office manager. And anyone else remotely related to the property, in the hopes that they could somehow, someday, buy one of the places that never seemed to be for sale.

And all of that talking? It finally paid off when my parents received a call about a year ago from the office manager, telling them that one of the families who lived there was thinking about listing their townhome for sale. And somehow, through the craziest bout of meant-to-be-perfect-timing ever, my parents found a buyer for the house they were living in in Indiana that had been on the market for years, downgraded to a smaller house still in Indiana, and used the difference to fund their dream purchase of a townhome on the beach.

And, of course, being the perfect, always loving daughter that I am, I agreed to help them manage the property, since I am the closest one to it at five hours away. And, if that means I have to go down once a month to check on how things are being kept up?

Well...I guess that's just a sacrifice I'm willing to make.
My life is SO TOUGH, you guys.
Side Note: We do have the place listed on VRBO (where Steve and I are managing the rentals), at really reasonable rates, if you're looking for a great vacation spot. It's pretty quiet and somewhat secluded on this part of the beach, most of the time, but there are also fun family activities nearby, if spending all day doing nothing on the beach isn't really your thing...

Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Sometimes, Pinterest comes through for you...

When you get right down to it, I'm not really a neat person. I'd like to think that I am, and when you compare me to everyone else in my family, it might even SEEM like I am. But I'm not. I'm terrible at organization, I like to own A LOT of stuff, I'm too lazy to always make sure things are put back in their proper places, and I JUST REALIZED LAST NIGHT THAT THERE HAD BEEN A QUARTER OF A BIRTHDAY CAKE SITTING ON MY DINING ROOM TABLE FOR TWO STRAIGHT WEEKS!

Come on. Who does that?

(And also? I'm not sure if I'm more disgusted with my housekeeping skills, here, or with the fact that I let birthday cake go to waste somewhere other than in my belly. It's probably a little of both.)

But, despite all of these annoyingly unhelpful personality traits, I also hate, hate, HATE clutter. I get antsy if things start piling up for too long.

I am just a walking contradiction, I am. You can imagine how pleasant this makes me to live with, right?

But every once in awhile, I come across an idea that allows me to pretend that I have things under control, even if it just applies to one very, very small area of my life. Like, say, under my bathroom sink?
I SO wish that the Pinterest picture I pulled this idea from had the proper link attached to it, because I want to call whoever first thought of this to tell them how brilliant they are. BRILLIANT, I SAY!

No more knocking a million bottles down to reach whatever is in the back of the cabinet. No more over-buying product that I already own, because I didn't realize I already owned it. No more under-utilizing the millions of samples that I have, because I didn't know I had them.

SHELVES THAT TURN! UNDER MY BATHROOM SINK! Why do I not think of these things, when they seem so obvious after someone else points them out to me?

I, uh, may have made Steve come in to share in the glory that was my organized bathroom cabinet when I'd finished putting all of my stuff back on the lazy susan. And I may, sometimes, just open the doors so I can bask in the glow of my neat little life. Apparently, my happy place is now under my sink. Go figure...


Tuesday, March 5, 2013

Inside My Comfort Zone

A few weeks ago, I finally got around to reading A Discovery of Witches (which had been on my Amazon wishlist forever) and Shadow of Night (because, hi, sequel...TELL ME WHAT HAPPENS NEXT!!!), and while I really loved reading them (well, I loved Discovery, anyway, but I kind of felt like Shadow didn't advance the plot enough for me to love it quite as much), I also learned something sad about myself...

I just don't have the time or mental capacity right now to take on anything new or thought provoking, or even at all interesting, when it comes to books. Or movies and television shows, for that matter. Between work and the girls, and my stupidly annoying need to get some sleep each night, I can't devote energy to these things like I have in the past. I am the type of person who has to know what is going to happen next, and I've spent MANY nights reading into all hours of the night to find out. It doesn't even necessarily have to be a great book to drag me in.

I mean, I read the whole Twilight series in one weekend. I just couldn't help myself, I had to know how it ended.

But, as I was stretching Caitlin's middle-of-the-night feedings to longer than necessary lengths, just to get in one more chapter of the Harkness books, then waking up beyond exhausted the next morning, I came to the conclusion that that's not really an option for me anymore. And NOTHING has made me feel older than realizing that I'm too old to stay up all night reading. So even though the list of books that I want to read keeps growing by the day, I bought the Harry Potter series for my Kindle to reread when I find myself with a few minutes to spare.

And the same thing has happened when it comes to TV shows. Did you know every season of Friday Night Lights is available for free on Amazon Prime streaming? Because it is, and I've heard nothing but great things about the series. And yet, I'm rewatching old West Wing episodes. Because I CAN'T GET SUCKED IN TO A NEW SERIES!

And then there are movies. I have $30 sitting on my iTunes account. I could rent some new movies, just like that. They still make good movies, right? I think I'll rewatch Center Stage or the Pride and Prejudice miniseries (both of which I bought off of iTunes the very moment I had an iTunes account) for the bajillionth, instead. I mean, I don't have to commit nearly as much brain power to the task when I have the entire thing burned into my memory.

(BRAIN POWER! FOR A MOVIE! I don't have enough brain power for a movie. I just can't even...)

This is how it starts, isn't it? I haven't been young and hip for awhile, now, but I also wasn't old and crotchety and set in my ways, yet. I'm on that path now, though, aren't I? It's all over.

Now get off my lawn, and take your loud rock n' roll music with you.