Swimsuit Season

... it's coming, you guys.

And I, for one, am excited!!! No, I haven't been taking crazy pills. Or doing drugs. And I didn't hit my head really hard. Nope - I've been working my butt off. Do you guys remember these results?
Well, a small chunk of that was from 30 Day Shred, but a major part of that was from T25. I got really, really bored with Jillian Michaels and her 30  Day Shred workouts, so I decided to find out what the fuss was all about with T25. I'm so glad I did. It changed my life - for real. These results are from a while back, maybe November? I'm about the same size as I was in the "after 10 weeks" group now, maybe a little skinnier from all the running I've been doing.

I've decided lately, though, that I want to get stronger. I want to build muscle and bulk up a little bit. So... I decided to order Body Beast. It's a 90 day program that will help me focus on bulking up and getting stronger. I decided, though, to not just go with the program, but to order an entire Challenge Pack. I'm not just going to focus on my workouts, nope! I'm going to work on nutrition, since that's my biggest struggle. I suck at meal planning, and I have a wicked sweet tooth. I'm excited to start this journey and see where it takes me. I'm supposed to get my Shakeology and challenge pack in the mail either tomorrow or Monday, then my Challenge Group starts on May 12 (although I'm totally going to start this thing sooner... just because I'm a little too excited about it).
Guys. I have had so much success with T25 and also Insanity that I am super pumped to see what Body Beast can do for me!!! My challenge group is open to anyone who wants to get fit or lead a healthier lifestyle, so if you are interested in having a great support group while you get healthy, let me know! I would love to help you out.

I'm A...

Hi guys!!!! 

So I've been thinking lately... what do we mean when we say we're a _________? When can we call ourselves _______________? What qualifies us as ______________?

Don't get what I mean?

I'm a photographer.  I didn't know when to start calling myself a photographer. I've had a "fancy camera" for years, but I didn't figure out how to really use it until about a year ago. Then, I took pictures of family and friends for free to practice. I did my first paid shoot in August of 2013. I still didn't feel comfortable calling myself a photographer, and I'm not sure why. I have poured hours of my life into studying photography, learning about light, learning all the tips and tricks of my camera, studying posing and composition, etc. etc. I've poured thousands of dollars into equipment and lenses. I've come a very long way, but I know I have a long way to go. I'm a photographer, but am I really? Do I really qualify as one?
I'm a runner.  I have a problem calling myself a runner. Nevermind the fact that I can run 8+ miles without stopping - I just don't feel like a runner. I'm not fast, I don't live to run, I don't really even care for it all that much, but does that mean I'm not a runner? Do I qualify as a runner even though it's not my favorite thing in the world? How do I make that distinction?

I'm sure there are plenty more __________s that I could fill, but those are the two I've been thinking of lately. What about you? What are your _________s that you question? What are you? 

Mama + Baby Style

Happy Hump Day!!! 

And thank you to those of you who texted, emailed, and facebook messaged me after yesterday's post. It obviously helped me get out of my funk because I had a fabulous run yesterday. A little over five miles at about a 9:30/mile pace, which is great for me. That may seem slow to some people, but for me... it's a friggin' miracle. Ha! So anyway... thanks to all of you guys who continually support me!

So... Elsie and I brand reps/models for Trendy Tree House, and last week in the mail, we received this super fun shirts! They are just perfect and we love them so much. I've never really had any clothes that coordinated with Elsie's, so I was super excited about getting these shirts! You can find them here. 

Feeling Discouraged.

Hey guys! 

So really this post is for me to get some feelings out in the hopes that I'll be better able to overcome them. I'm not allowing comments on this post, but if you feel the need to say something, you know how to reach me.

The half marathon is about 3 weeks away. On Saturday, I was supposed to run a 10K for time. Great, no problem. I got my workout gear on, filled my water bottles, grabbed my phone and headed for the door. As soon as I got to the trailhead, I started to run. About thirty seconds in, I had a lot of pain in my calves and my knees. A little bit of pain when I'm first starting out isn't unusual for me - I generally just run through it and it stops after about mile 2. This was different, though - this hurt. Like, really hurt. It was to the point where I didn't want to risk injuries by running, so I stopped. I stretched, walked a bit, then started jogging again. Things still hurt, so I walked until I reached the part of the trail where it turns to gravel (about 1.25 miles in). I started running again, and I felt a little bit better.

As soon as my knees started feeling better, though, my sinus issues came into play. I had snot running down my face and a major sinus headache. Running made my head feel like it was going to explode. I was so annoyed! I used all 5 tissues that I had with me and went through one of my water bottles. By this time, I was about 3 miles in and had probably walked a total of a mile. I was pissed. I got to the turnaround point and decided that I was going to try to run again. At this point, it's 85 degrees and humid, I'm having sinus and asthma issues, I have to pee, I'm almost out of water, and I'm angry. This was supposed to be a great run for me. I was supposed to be feeling freaking awesome. WHY DIDN'T I, THEN?!? I started to jog, and, of course, my left knee starts screaming at me. I had to stop. Had to. As I slowed down to start walking, my knee almost gave out on me. I had to walk the last 2.75 miles home.

I felt (feel) like a total and complete failure. I know we all have bad runs, I do. I know that every run can't be super amazing. But you know what?! I also know that I'm not a runner. I don't love running. Running is not enjoyable for me, so at this point, I'm incredibly discouraged. I have been eating my feelings the past two days (in the form of sour cream and cheddar potato chips and cheese balls), and I'm mad at myself for that. I skipped the gym today because I'm afraid. I'm afraid that, if I were to try to run five miles today, I would fail. So instead of running, I slept, telling myself that I'd go tomorrow. I'm scared. I have invested so much time (and money!!!) into this stupid half marathon, and now I feel like I will never be able to do it.

So that's that. That's what's going on over here. Hopefully tomorrow I can overcome this feeling and just get out there and run.



I get frustrated with that beautiful, squishy baby of mine. Whether it's when she's constantly whining, throwing her food all over my nice, clean outfit, or taking sips of milk only to spit them all over herself, I get frustrated. I tell her to "JUST STOP!" in a slightly louder than usual voice. I like to think I'm not the only mom who has done this, but sometimes... 

I wonder. I wonder if I AM the only one, because no one ever talks about this part of being a mother. They only talk about the lovey dovey things, the things that perfect moms do. Sometimes... 

I wish we could all be real. I wish that, instead of sharing how awesome we all are, we could share how human we all are. We could share that sometimes... 

We snap at other people. Not just our kids or our husbands, either. We all have bad days, we all have those times where we wish we could just hide under the covers all day while someone else took over our responsibilities. If we could all just cut the crap and be real with each other, we would know that sometimes...

(okay, 99% of the time) my house is an absolute disaster. There are laundry piles on the couch, toys strewn throughout the house, piles of dishes in the sink, cereal on the kitchen floor, and unmade beds. I'm not a dirty person, I promise. It's just that sometimes... 

I get overwhelmed. I go to work, I come home, I take care of Elsie and play with her, I wash and fold the laundry, I do a couple dishes, and then Mike gets home. The house looks like an absolute disaster when, in reality, I feel like I've accomplished so much. If I have, though, why is it so difficult for me to see the results of my hard work? Instead of seeing the piles of clean, folded laundry (that were once piles of dirty laundry), I see clutter. I see a mess. I see myself, failing as a wife and mother because the house isn't spotless and dinner isn't cooked and on a perfectly set table. I think that sometimes.... 

We are our own worst critics. I don't know how other people see me, but I like to think that maybe they don't judge me as harshly as I judge myself. How many of us have this problem? How many of us beat ourselves up day after day, thinking that we aren't _____________ enough? Probably a lot of us. Maybe even all of us.

My Workout Essentials


Okay, so. Most of you know that I'm torturing myself by training to run a half marathon in about 3.5 weeks. In addition to running 3 days a week for my training, I've been spending time lifting weights and cross training 3-4 times a week. Over the past few months of workouts, I've found that there are a few things that I just have to have.

1. Dixie cups. Yes, you read that right - dixie cups. Fill those puppies up with ice and pop em in the freezer. Use them when you get joint pain or shin splints - take them out of the freezer and massage your sore areas with the cups until the ice runs out. This has worked wonders for me. I can thank my little brother's girlfriend for this idea!

2. Polar FT7. I seriously cannot work out without this thing. I love that it monitors my heart rate and tells me how many calories I'm burning during a work out.
3. Good shoes. This is of the utmost importance, especially if you're running. Go to a specialty running store and get fitted for some good shoes. If you aren't running and are just lifting weights, make sure you've got shoes that fit well and offer support.

4. Hydration belt. Again, this is more for running long distances (or hiking, if you live near mountains), but it's been a lifesaver. Total necessity. Mine holds tissues, 20 oz of water, my stun gun, snacks, and my cell phone.
5. C9 Champion Tech Tee. This shirt is great - before I found it, I couldn't wear shirts with sleeves while working out. This shirt changed it all, though - it keeps me cool and dry and wicks sweat like no other.
6. C9 Sports bra. Again, AMAZING! Look, I know I've gone from a D cup to a B cup in a matter of months, BUT either way, this bra holds the girls in nice and tight, and... if I get chilly, no one knows, if you know what I mean.
7. Good socks. I like these ones (I promise this is not a sponsored post for Target). When you're wearing them, it feels like you're walking on a cloud. Basically, you want your feet to be taken care of.
8. Headband. I need to keep my hair out of my face while working out, and a headband never fails.

9. Protein. I'm just getting into this, but you can't go wrong mixing a scoop of this whey protein shake with almond milk, ice, and a banana. BOOM. Delicious - thank me later.
10. MOTIVATION!!!! This can come in the form of awesome music, a workout buddy, or a goal that you're trying to meet. You won't work out if you're not motivated to do so, so download an awesome playlist, find a friend, or sign up for a race or competition. Nothing can be done without it.

What are your workout must-haves? Anything I missed? 

10 Months!

This post is so late it's not even funny, but since I know I'm just not going to get around to taking Elsie's pictures for month ten, I'll just post it now.

Dear Elsie, 

You are getting so big and starting to look more like a toddler and less like a baby every day. You've also started to show off (and assert) your huge personality. You can throw temper tantrums like no other (not looking forward to the terrible two's), love to hear your own voice, and are a huge "people person." You're still long and skinny, wearing 12 month pants and leggings and 9-12 month onesies.
You crawl, stand with support, and "cruise" if you see something that you want. You're super talkative - you point to things and say, "dat," say, "dada," "ba-ba," "WOW," and occasionally "up" (although I think you go through phases with words - saying one all the time, then forgetting about it for a week or two and eventually coming back to it). You've said "mama" once or twice, but I haven't heard it since. We also JUST figured out that you've been saying, "uh-oh" for a couple of months now. We knew you were saying something, but we just didn't know what it was!

Anyway, you still LOVE to clap and sing, and you've started to wave. You "read" your books and love to drink from a straw. You hate veggies (it's like pulling teeth trying to get you to eat them), love smoothies, and freak out if we don't share our pizza with you. You need a haircut in the worst way, but I just can't bring myself to cut your cute little wispy hairs!!

There are days that you make me want to rip my hair out, but even at the end of one of those long, crappy days, I miss you once you're in bed for the night. I love you more and more with each passing day and am so happy that you're mine. You're the best, kiddo.



Sunday confessions

Happy Sunday! 

... and happy General Conference weekend, too! Hope you all are getting some rest and enjoying time spent with family and friends.

1. I messed up on the no treats thing on Friday... and so I went alllllll the way. Mike brought me a donut for breakfast, so I ate it without thinking, then realized it was probably considered a treat. So... I ate a delicious slice of cake (770 calories of pure deliciousness) and a TON of candy. So much, in fact, that I will not be needing another cheat day anytime soon.

2. Umm... I peed on the side of the running trail yesterday. I probably should've gone to the bathroom before I left for an hour and a half of running, but let's just ignore that fact. Good thing I always bring tissues on my long runs. Anyway... don't worry - I don't think anyone saw me. I'm sure you're all busy clicking the "unfollow" button now. HA!

3. In the past two weeks, I have watched more television than any human ever should. Like, really. It's bad. Really bad. Recent favorites have been every season of Drop Dead Diva, the one season of Emily Owens, MD that's on Netflix, Call the Midwives, and, of course, Psych. 

4. I cried when Elsie figured out how to crawl. I know, it's pathetic. She's 10 months and most babies start to crawl between 5-7 months... so I had plenty of time to prepare for this, but I still was not ready to come to terms with the fact that she's growing up!

5. I hate doing dishes. With a passion. But then again, who likes doing them? No one sane, that's who!!!

What do you have to confess?