Week One - Taking it Off

Happy Tuesday!!! 

We are leaving for Utah today, so I'll let you all know how that goes. Just wanted to pop in and update you all on this plan to lose the weight. I haven't had the chance to weigh myself just yet, but I'm hoping to be able to next Monday, and hopefully I'll see some results.

I'm happy with all that I was able to accomplish as far as working out this past week, but I know I can do better. We'll see if I'm able to stick with it all while we're out west (hopefully the extra elevation won't totally kill me). No pictures because I'm just here to keep myself accountable and keep track of what I've done.

-Walked 3.2 miles with Elsie and a friend
- 30 normal squats, 20 wide leg squats
- 4 sets of 20 leg lifts (2 sets on hands and knees, 2 sets laying on side) on each side
- Week 1, Day 1 of C25K with Michael and Elsie (1.7 miles)

- Walked a mile
- 50 normal squats, 20 wide leg squats
- 2 sets of 20 leg lifts on each side

- Walked 3.3 miles with Elsie and a friend
- 55 normal squats, 20 wide leg squats
- 2 sets of 20 leg lifts on each side
- Missed C25K today, plan on making up on Thursday

- Walked 2.2 miles with Elsie and a friend
- Week 1, Day 2 of C25K with Elsie (Mike mowed the lawn instead... that's definitely a good substitute) 1.6 miles
- Rest day for squats & leg lifts

- 60 normal squats, 20 wide leg squats
- Walked 3 miles with Elsie

- 60 normal squats
- Drove to Sioux City/Wichita, so didn't have time to walk or jog. :(

- Walked 1.5 miles with family

- 90 normal squats
- Walked/jogged 2.7 miles (about 1.5 miles total jogging... YAY!!!) --> I'm counting this as week 1 day 3 of C25K because the longest amount of time walked was 90 seconds.

Total miles logged: 20.2/avg of 2.5 miles per day

One Month

Happy Monday!! 

I'm posting this from my phone, so that's why the picture is not the greatest and the formatting is probably all funky. 


Today Miss Elsie is a month old! I seriously can't believe it's been that long. I mean, where the heck have I been? Sheesh. So here's the mandatory "one month" photo:
Let's see here... What am I supposed to say? Oh, right. 
Weight: not positive on this one since its been almost a week since we weighed her, but I'm pretty positive that she's right at 8 lbs. 
Length: 23 inches
Cuteness factor: 15 on a scale of 1 to 10. I'm not biased at all. 
Awesome skills and stuff: This is the part where I tell you how advanced my baby is, because everyone thinks their baby is the most advanced human being in the world. But I guess I'll tell you the cool things my kid does. She's accidentally rolled from her back to her tummy twice now (each time there was a tiny bit of an incline). She smiles so much, especially when Mike or I wakes her up from her nap - she'll look up into our faces and give us a huge smile. Unfortunately, every time I whip out the camera, she stops. Ha! 
Other stuff: we have a very happy baby who also happens to be a fabulous sleeper. Unless she's growing, she gives us about 6 hours of uninterrupted sleep per night. Most nights I will wake up to pump, but if I'm super tired, I just pass out. 
This girl is a poop machine. In the first month of her life, we have changed 272 diapers (actually a few more than that, but we aren't through the next 42 pack, so I'm not counting any of those till the pack is gone). We're keeping track so that we can tell her high school boyfriends. 
We are still having some minor issues with breastfeeding, but that's a story for another post entirely (because I know you all wanna read a post about my boobs and their ability to feed this kid). 
Moral of the story: my baby is friggin awesome. Try not to be too jealous. FIST PUMP!!! 

Road Trippin'

Yo Homies. 

So we're going on a trip to Utah for my grandparents' 50th wedding anniversary and a family reunion. Call us crazy, but we are driving (well, sort of - we can't afford to drive ourselves, so we are driving down to Wichita [hey Sabrina, want to meet up on Monday?] to hitch a ride with the fam).

Do you know how long that drive is when you drive straight through? No? Let me tell you - Lincoln to Wichita is 4.5 hours, so not too bad. Wichita to American Fork, however, is a different story - it's a fifteen hour drive.
You may be thinking a few things: 

1. You are bat s*** crazy. 
2. How the eff are you going to do it? 
3. What in the world are you going to bring? 

Okay, you may not be thinking the third thing, but that's what I'm going to address in this here blog post (as for the other two - yes, we are friggin' insane and I have no clue).
1. Diapers & wipes. Ummm duh!!!!
2. Breast Pump (and AC adapter or batteries). There is no way in Haades that I am letting us stop every three hours so that I can spend 30-45 minutes feeding baby G. I mean, really. Instead, I will just pump every two hours so that Mike can give her a bottle when she gets fussy. Some people might prefer stopping to breast feed, but that's not me. Let's get there as fast as possible, am I right?
3. Baby Carrier. I'm bringing our Moby wrap and our other baby wrap on this trip. You have to have baby with you constantly, and I personally vote for the "hands free" option.
4. Stroller. I'll be bringing our jogging stroller because it's part of a travel system with our car seat. We may not be able to bring it everywhere, but since I plan on continuing my workout plan while we're out of town, this is a necessity.
buy it here
5. Pack n' play / bassinet. Our bassinet folds up just like our pack n' play, except it's quite a bit smaller. Because Elsie is still so little, we are conserving space and bringing the bassinet instead of the pack n' play. This is definitely a must, though, because the little one will need somewhere to nap/sleep at night.
buy it here
6. Precisely one million outfits. Seriously, though. I think Elsie is going through a growth spurt right now, so I'm going to bring newborn and 0-3 month outfits with us. I won't be bringing any sleepers because they just take up space, and she will get too warm when she's swaddled and wearing a sleeper.

7. HALO Sleep Sack. This is an outright necessity. Seriously. If you have a baby, go buy one now. Elsie can wiggle her arms out of virtually every other swaddling blanket/contraption except this one (I want to try the woombie... I think she'd have a hard time with that one, too). It's basically a baby straightjacket. We love it.
buy it here
8. Burp rags. Since we'll be bottle feeding while on the road, these are kind of a necessity, since homegirl likes to dribble and drool when given a bottle.

9. Receiving blankets. The temperature in the car is obviously a lot cooler than it is outside. We'll have her in a onesie or summery outfit and just throw a lightweight blanket on top of her for comfort.

10. Tide pen. Because you never know when an accident is going to happen. You may not be anywhere near a washing machine, and you definitely don't want that stain to set on baby's adorable outfit!

Am I forgetting any necessities? Help a momma out!! 

Elsie's big Day

Happy Wednesday!! 

As many of you know by now, I'm LDS (aka Mormon). For those of you that didn't know... SURPRISE, I'M MORMON!!! Now that we're all clear on that, I wanted to share some pictures from Elsie's blessing day (Sunday, June 9, 2013).

Before I share the pictures, I guess I could give a quick summary on what, exactly, a baby blessing is. In the LDS church, we do not baptize infants (the age of baptism in our church is 8 years and older. I'd tell you more about that, but that's a whole long post of its own), but we do bless them. Basically, this is a blessing where the child is given a name (officially) and a blessing for their life. It can be done at home or at church, but either way, it's a very special and sacred occasion, and family usually gathers for the event.

Elsie wore the same dress that I was blessed in - it was a little big on her, but I thought she was just perfect.
The booties are hand-made - my mom is amazing at crocheting, and she crocheted these little booties for Elsie the day before the blessing! I hope that these become a family heirloom, because they are absolutely beautiful.
We didn't really go crazy on Elsie's blessing day with a brunch or anything like that - we just kept it simple and hung out with our families.

Taking it OFF!

Happy Tuesday!! 

All right, folks. This is the part where it gets real. This is the part where I share the stuff that every woman hates sharing - measurements and weight. I can't fit into my normal clothes and money is super tight for us right now, so a new wardrobe is out of the question. Heck, even a few new staples are out of the question! I've been wandering around in too-tight t-shirts and Mike's gym shorts for a couple weeks, and that needs to end. I need to be held accountable for my weight loss/measurement goals, so this is it.

Pre-pregnancy Measurements (GOAL): 
Waist: 28.5 inches
Hips: 39.5 inches
Weight: 148 lbs

Current Measurements (picture to come... I don't have one right now)

Waist: 31 inches
Hips: 42.5 inches
Weight: 168 lbs

To Lose: 

Waist: 2.5 inches
Hips: 3 inches
Weight: 20 lbs

- I do not think I'm fat. I just know that I'm not at a level that is healthy for me and my body type (I am aware that I am 6'1" and you may think that my goal weight is too low - it's actually a very healthy weight for my small frame - please keep your judgmental thoughts to yourself).

The Plan: 

Up until the 6-week postpartum point: 
- Walk at least two miles every day
- Do at least 50 squats (30 normal, 20 wide leg - minimum) each day
- Do at least 40 leg lifts (2 sets of 10 each side) each day
- Do C25K running plan from start to finish (this is in addition to the two mile daily walk)
- Eat 3 servings of veggies and 3 servings of fruit each day
- One "treat" a day (chips, sweets, etc)
- Drink at least 80 oz of water each day

6-week postpartum point and after: 
- Start Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred
- Continue all of the above

I hope to have the inches and weight off by September. That gives me three months to lose 20 lbs and about 3 inches. I figure that it's definitely doable!

Are you trying to lose weight or get in shape? Let's keep each other accountable!! 


Happy Monday!!

At just over three weeks since giving birth, I'm a little more than halfway through the standard recommended recovery time for a c-section. I thought I'd take a minute to let you guys in on what that "recovery" has been like for me, both emotionally and physically (note: this is not meant to be a "this is what recovery from a c-section is like for everyone" post).


I feel like I have been incredibly blessed in the "physical" aspect. Within a week, I could walk about 6 blocks without any pain (I probably walked slower than your 90-year-old grandmother, but I could walk!). At two weeks, I got the "okay" from my midwife to start exercising (no Jillian Michaels or Insanity - just simple things). At three weeks, I can comfortably jog 2-3 blocks and briskly walk 1-2 miles.
Exactly one week after the c-section
That first week, though? Let me tell you about it.

For the first 24 hours, I could barely move. The nifty hospital bed was the only way I could sit up or lean back. I couldn't laugh, sneeze, cough, or pass gas because it hurt so badly. I was drugged out of my frickin' mind - first it was morphine via the IV, but when that wasn't killing the pain, they switched me to 2 percocet every 4 hours. I was still hooked up to the catheter (thank goodness, because I don't think I could have gone to the bathroom if I'd tried!) and every two-four hours, a nurse would come in and push and prod my tummy, dangerously close to my incision. It hurt like a beep.

After about 72 hours, I could get up from the bed with help from Michael. I could go to the bathroom... with help from Michael. I could walk through the halls of the hospital... with help from Michael. Are you sensing a pattern, here?

Once we came home from the hospital, it took virtually all of my strength to get from our bedroom to the bathroom. There was one point where it took me 20 minutes to get from point A to point B, and that was AFTER I spent five minutes getting up off the bed. Once again, I couldn't do anything without, you guessed it- help from Michael (thank goodness his boss gave him a week off).

For me, the first week was definitely the hardest. I still get frustrated that I'm not 100%, but I keep reminding myself that a c-section is frickin' major surgery!

This brings me to...


I was (and still kind of am) a wreck. For two weeks, I felt virtually every emotion imaginable. I was happy that I had a perfect, healthy baby girl. I was pissed that I couldn't do a dang thing for myself. I was disappointed that I didn't get the birth that I wanted (and can never have the water birth that I hoped for). I was sad that I had to have a c-section. I felt an immense amount of love for both Mike and Elsie. I felt hurt. I felt cheated. I felt annoyed. I felt weak. I felt frustrated. I felt like I wasn't good enough - like there was something wrong with me and my body. At one point, I even blamed Elsie for the way things played out. That was the limit. 

The problem with me feeling all of these emotions? I am a bottler. I bottle everything up, then I let it explode. Lucky for me, Mike could tell that something was seriously wrong before I reached the explosion. I honestly don't know what I would do without him. One night around midnight, he laid with me in bed, trying to get me to talk through all of my emotions. Eventually, after me saying, "It's nothing, it's not a big deal," about 500 times, everything just poured out. I cried and cried and told him how I felt like a terrible, weak human being for feeling this way. He was there for me - he held me close, told me how strong I was, and told me that it was okay.
It didn't all get better right away, but after that night, I didn't feel quite so bad. Since then, every day has gotten better. I still have moments where I'm frustrated, I still have days that I cry because I will never be able to experience birth the way I want to, there are times when I look in the mirror and wish that I was physically capable of a good, hard workout, and, yes - there are days that I am disappointed in myself and wonder if there was something I could have done differently.

Those are the moments I am so thankful to have these two people in my life to remind me that God is good and everything happens for a reason.

Daddy's Little Girl.

Happy Sunday!! 

No confessions today. I promise that next week we will be back to our regularly scheduled Sunday Confessions link-up.

Not today, though. Today I want to dedicate a post to the two most important men in my life.
Dear Michael, 

Happy first Father's Day!! Watching you become a daddy to our little girl has been one of the most amazing experiences of my life. As I saw you hold her and welcome her into the world with tears in your eyes, I knew that there was no one else in the world I would rather have beside me on this journey.

Every day I watch you as you hold our sweet baby, showering her with kisses and telling her how much you love her, and every day I am grateful to call you mine. I see the love in your eyes as you put her to bed at night and kiss her goodbye each morning. I hear you sing to her to calm her, and it's the most beautiful thing I've ever heard. As I watch these tender moments unfold between you and our daughter, my heart overflows with joy. There is no bond quite like the one that exists between a father and a daughter, and I want you to know that you will have that special bond with our little girl. You are her father - you will love her no matter what, forever and for always, and for that I am thankful.

I love you, Michael. Thank you for helping me bring this sweet spirit into the world, and thank you for being her daddy.


Dear Dad, 

Happy Father's Day! I hope you realize how much I love and appreciate you. It is really difficult for me to put my feelings into words. I'm so thankful to you for never accepting less than my best, and always pushing me to do better. I'm glad that you let me know when you didn't approve of my choices. I'm thankful for the days you left work early to come to my swim meets in high school. I'm glad that you were always there with a big hug when I needed one. Thank you for tucking me into bed each night with a bear hug and snuggles until I moved out of the house (even though you sighed when your 17-year-old daughter asked to be tucked in, I think you secretly liked that I still needed you).  Thank you for encouraging me to get a college education. Thank you for teaching me the value of hard work. Thank you for loving me in spite of my mistakes. Thank you for being my dad - I wouldn't be where I am today without you.

I love you, daddy!


Your little girl

Money, Money, MONEY!!!

Happy Thursday! 

Let's all take a minute to laugh at the fact that I had to look at my phone screen to see what day of the week it is. This momma is definitely having a rough time keeping track of time, that's for sure! Anyway. This is the part where I insert a cute picture of my baby. Because I'm now a mommy whack job.
As you all know from this post a while back, I'm going back to school in the fall. I love school, and I am sooo super stoked that my tuition is covered! You know what isn't being paid for by the university, though? My textbooks. I personally think that that is super dooper lame, because college textbooks are more expensive than diamonds. Or kidneys. Or, ya know, something else that's really expensive.

Buying books is expensive and recently there's been a push for renting textbooks, which is great, but it still costs money. If only there was a way to make money with this whole textbook thing (and I'm not talking about the $5 your university offers you for your book at the end of a semester... let's get money that allows us to go out to dinner and eat off of something other than the dollar menu at McD's).

Oh, wait!!

Enter this ingenious site. If you're anything like me, you have about 20 college textbooks just sitting around gathering dust because the buy back price at your university wouldn't even buy you a drink during Sonic's happy hour. Why not put those books to work making money for you? Here's how:
Smart, isn't it?! As I write this, I'm taking inventory of all my textbooks that are sitting around.

I mean, the money from renting out your old textbooks may not pay for all of your new textbooks, but it's money in your pocket with virtually no effort from you. What are you waiting for?! Go make some money (you can thank me with a nice steak dinner).

**I did receive compensation for this post, but all opinions are 100% my own. 

The Funniest Pair You Ever Saw

Happy Wednesday!!

I don't know how I could possibly think that blogging with a newborn would be easy, but I did. And I was mistaken.
What were you thinking, Mom?!
You know what else isn't easy? Trips to Target with said newborn and a mother-in-law who is also recovering from surgery. I don't know what prompted Mike and Duane (father-in-law) to let us venture out on our own, but if they could have seen us, I'm sure they would have gotten a good laugh!

Some background information: I'm not allowed to drive until Friday (no driving for two weeks after c-section). I'm also not allowed to lift more than ten lbs., and I'm definitely not allowed to lift Elsie while she's in her car seat.

My mother-in-law broke her leg a few weeks ago and had to undergo some major surgery on her knee. She is currently sporting a brace and crutches. Luckily, she can drive and her arms are fully functional.

see the brace? 
Our plan: We hop into the truck and drive to the store. I get out of the truck, walk (slowly, very slowly) to the cart pickup, grab a cart, and push it (slowly, very slowly) back to the truck, where Becky will be waiting to transfer Elsie's car seat from the truck to the cart. Once she's in the cart, we're golden and will have no trouble whatsoever navigating the aisles of the store.

What actually happened: I spend 5 minutes struggling to climb into the truck (it's a big tall raptor something or other... and if it's tall for me, then you know it's a huge truck). I finally figure out that if I kneel on the step, I can use my arms to pull myself onto the seat. Meanwhile, Becky is sitting in the driver's seat laughing her butt off (there's just something funny about watching someone struggle to get into a car).
the only picture I have of the truck
Once I'm in the vehicle, we get ready to head to the store. We make it to Target without too much trouble and I'm able to slide out of the truck onto the ground. I hobble over to the cart return and grab the first cart I see. I take it back to the side of the truck so that Becky can pull Elsie's car seat out and put it on the cart.

Word to the wise: carts don't have brakes. I turn around for a second to help Becky unlatch the seat and suddenly I hear her shouting, "THE CART, THE CART!! IT'S RUNNING AWAY!!" Of course she can't get it - she only has one working leg. I turn around to see the cart headed straight for a van three spots away. I "run" after the thing and barely catch it before it t-bones the car (of course the owner is sitting in said vehicle, watching this all go down) and breathe a sigh of relief while Becky is standing there on one leg holding the car seat.

We finally get the seat into the cart and head into the store, me leading the way. I get to the store entrance and try to push the cart in, but I can't get it over the metal bump. I push and push, but it just won't budge! I have to call Becky over to help me get into the store. Once we realize how ridiculous we look, we just about fall over from laughing so hard. The whole time we're laughing, I'm practically crying, "Don't make me laugh, don't make me laugh!! It HURTS!!" Because folks, when you have a c-section, there are a few things that really hurt - coughing, sneezing, and... you guessed it - laughing.

Once we get into the store, Becky spends about five minutes trying to figure out why the motorized scooter won't work (eventually a couple of associates come over and help us get the thing going). We proceed to the baby section where it all just goes downhill. Basically, to make a long story short, we run into a lot of clothing racks, knock quite a few things off of the racks (and neither one of us can really bend over to pick them up... even though we try), make a lot of noise attempting to maneuver the cart and motorized scooter, and spend forty-five minutes doing what should have taken ten.

Eventually we make it out of the store and back home, but not without having a good laugh at our peculiar situation.

I'm sure this story is nowhere near as funny to anyone else as it was to us while it was happening, but that's okay. This was Elsie's first outing (don't worry, she was covered with the car seat canopy the entire time so that she didn't catch the plague), and I'm glad it was so memorable.
Moral of the story: Don't send two gimps and a baby to the store - they'll likely cause a scene. 

Part Four (AKA A Happy Ending).

Part One. 

Part Two. 

Part Three. 
At 5:45 pm, I saw the doctor hold up a purple thing that looked a little bit like an octopus who was missing a few limbs. It took me a minute to realize that 1) it was not an octopus… it was my baby! And 2) the surgeon had literally just barely taken her out of my stomach – she was real. Mike jumped up out of his seat and ran to be with the baby while they did her APGAR scores. All I could do was lay there and wait for them to stitch me up and wheel me to recovery so that I could finally hold my little girl. As I was waiting, though, I had tears running down my face. 
Just watching Mike “become” a daddy was the most amazing thing I have ever witnessed. The pure joy on his face as he took it all in was simply surreal. 
I probably looked like a wreck as I was laying there, tears running down my face, shouting out, “She’s so beautiful, my baby, my baby! That’s my beautiful little girl,” but I just didn’t care. I couldn’t wait for them to put me back on the bed and transfer me to recovery so that I could finally have some skin to skin time with our baby. As soon as I was on the bed, Carol brought Elsie to me and laid her on my chest. It was only then, as I watched my little girl begin to breast feed, that I could comprehend the miracle that had been occurring in my body for the past 41 weeks and four days. All I could do was look at my little girl and whisper, “I would do it all again for you. Every second of labor, every ounce of pain, every moment where I wanted to give up – I would do it all again in a heartbeat.” And that, my friends, is how I learned what a mother’s love is.
Did my birth go “according to plan?” Absolutely not. You know what, though? My midwife told me that I had just had one of the most positive births she had gotten to witness. I am absolutely convinced that it is because of the amount of time I had spent preparing my mind for the possibility of something other than a natural labor. I did everything I could to maintain a positive outlook on birth, making sure to remember that my health and my baby’s health were the two most important things. If I had had this labor and delivery in a third world country or another time, I may not have made it. Elsie may not have made it. There is a time and a place for medical intervention, and I am so, so happy that we live in a world where those options are available. I’m thankful for a midwife and a nurse who stood by my side and supported me in every decision I made. Above all, though, I am thankful for my family. I’m thankful for Mike, who has been there for me every second since this journey began and I am thankful for Elsie, who, within seconds, completely changed the way I look at the world.
It truly is a miracle.