Thursday, December 29, 2011

The Puppy Update Post

Okay, so I'm sure you all are dying to hear about how our puppies are doing (pahaha) so I thought I'd dedicate an entire post to my dogs.

(I'm just sayin' y'all... Wait 'til I have kids!)

Leia has been with us for a little over two months now and she's really such a joy! I couldn't have imagined a dog better-suited for our home. I always wanted a lapdog and, although Luke would love to be in our laps 24/7, he's just a wee bit big. Leia loves cuddling, which melts my heart, and she loves her big brother, which makes having her here that much more of a perfect fit. They really are an amazing pair.

So here's how it's going:

Leia is slowly but steadily picking up potty-training. Homegirl has to be on a set schedule or she has accidents. I forgot how tedious crate-training was but she's bringing it all back to us! Except I feel like with her it's harder because we like having her out with us to play with Luke (and, let's face it, to cuddle with me on the couch) and being out of the crate more = more accidents. But we're retraining ourselves to make more frequent trips to the yard for potty time and she's getting there. She definitely is exactly like Luke in that she goes potty almost immediately after getting to the yard. We don't have to wait around for her to go, which is lovely (especially now that it's getting colder!).

BDR took this picture shortly after she came to live with us. He took her out to potty and this is what she did instead. Such a silly girl!

We've been a little lackadaisical about trick training her, much more so than we were with Luke. By the time Luke was her age he could sit, speak, shake, lay down, and who knows what else. With Leia, we haven't been as on the ball so I'm trying to use this break from school as an opportunity to really pack in as much training as I can. We have only taken her on 3-4 walks on the leash. We use a leash every time we take her outside to potty, so she knows how to walk on one (although she does tend to pull when she's excited), but she hasn't had much experience going on walks around the neighborhood. I discovered recently on a walk with her and Luke that she is a barker. Dogs we pass behind fences in yards can bark at Luke 'til they're blue in the face and he'd never even look their way... That is not the case with Miss Leia Girl. She stops in her tracks, barks right back, and gives them what for! I will say, she does continue walking immediately after she gets a few barks out, but this is definitely something new for us because Luke never responded to dogs we pass. We also recently took her on a walk without Luke into town to see how she responded to passing cars and people walking around. She did very well and didn't seem insecure around the traffic or pedestrians, so that is nice. As far as tricks, she's still focusing on the basics (sit, stay, speak, shake, and down) and one that Luke never could get the hang of: roll over. Her and Luke pray together at every meal, not going towards their food bowls until we say "Amen" (I really should record that on video soon), and they sleep together every night in their crate.

They love cuddling together.
There was a pretty big halt in trick training Luke also. I don't think we'd taught him anything new since before he turned 1 (which was in May). My MIL bought us a book for Christmas called 101 Dog Tricks (by Kyra Sundance) which gives step-by-step descriptions with pictures on an insane amount of tricks. I've been dog-earing them (pardon the pun) so I can teach Luke and Leia as many as possible. So far, with Luke, we've worked on roll over again (which was a fail... again. Dude just doesn't like being on his back, and we're cool with that). We also have started work on "crawl" and having him tap which hand a treat is in with his paw. He is so incredibly smart... He was able to do both of them at least three times in one day! He really does pick up things fast... I hope his little sister is as quick to learn new things as he is! 

We are some proud parents, that's for sure. Our babies are pretty phenomenal, and they keep my heart happy and my mind busy until we're blessed with [human] babies of our own!

I mean, really, what's not to love?


I've made some changes to the blog. Edited my About Me (which hadn't been updated since I created the blog, oops). I still plan on tweaking things over the next couple of days (weeks?). Any/all suggestions are more than welcome! Anything missing from the page that would make it more accessible, more informative, more inviting? I'm open to any critiques/praise. I want to know what's working and what isn't.

Wednesday, December 28, 2011

The Fitbit Post

My lovely MIL got Husband and I each a Fitbit for Christmas.

Mine is plum and Husband's is blue.

I hadn't ever heard of such-gadget before, but I've been wearing it for the past two days and I'm pretty much falling in love with it. It's a little device you keep on you at all times (even while sleeping) and it tracks amazing things like calories burned, floors climbed, steps walked, level of activity exerted, efficiency of sleep, and several other things you can track on the accompanying website. Not that I'm a spokesperson for the product or anything, as I know there are several others out there that do the same thing. But I don't have all those other things, I just have this so it's all I can speak about. The only things I'm finding I don't care for about it are

1) you can't create recipes on the food tracker. You can make meals for one person and include all the ingredients, but you can't put in a whole meal for more than one person and then say I ate a single serving of this whole recipe (which is something I LOVE about So I'll probably wind up manually adding in the amount of calories per meal based on what MFP calculates. 

2) I wear mine in the center of my bra, between the cups, right against my sternum. It's comfortable at all times and completely discrete so I don't ever have to worry about it. I love that, but at the same time a) I'm worried that I'll forget to take it off when I do laundry, and b) since it has to charge on the charging dock, I have to remove it at some point and then I basically have to stay sedentary or my steps don't count. Not that's a huge thing (at all), I'm just saying.

And that's it. A whole two (minor) things. Other than those, so far I love it.

It keeps me motivated and encouraged to complete my steps. Although I haven't yet... Today it got me moving much more than yesterday to try to get 100%. Yesterday I only walked around my usual route with the dogs and did no more. Today I tried to be more active. BDR and I took Leia on a walk into town to go to the Pet Shop (which ended up being closed, ha) and then after he left for work I walked from my home to a main street I've never walked all the way to before for a total of 4.7 miles walked today (out of a goal of 5 miles). I'm happy with that. Part of me wants to go walk around the block to complete the whole 5 miles, but I think I'll wait and just push myself that much further tomorrow.

I'm also excited about another gift my MIL gave us for Christmas: a membership to the local YMCA. It's located only 5-6 blocks away from us so I can walk to/from for a warm up/cool down, which is really exciting to me. I haven't ever had a membership to an actual gym before (only Tan & Tone) so this will be new to me, but I'm eager to get started! They have racquetball courts which probably shouldn't make me as giddy as it does. When I was younger I played racquetball one time at a gym in Lawton and absolutely loved it. It may have just been the novelty of it, but I'm hoping it's something I can still enjoy doing because it's a great workout. Not to mention all the other equipment they have there... I'm ready to start now!

So things are looking up. I don't have my diet 100% (or even 95%) squared away, but I'm trying to take baby steps. I'm hoping that going into it one step at a time will help me create habits that stick.

I am so ready and excited to see what 2012 has in store for my family and I! So many things to look forward to!!

What are you looking the most forward to? Any resolutions you've set for yourself you want to attain? Any milestones or upcoming events that you are excited about?

'Night y'all!

Monday, December 19, 2011

The Retrospect Post

I began this blog on November 3, 2010. The anniversary of the beginning of the blog came and went during my hiatus and I didn't even realize. I just read what I posted a year ago this weekend and it's alarming how much hasn't changed, when I feel like so much has.

A year ago today I was blogging about the weekend. We had just gotten back from Husband's grandma's Christmas party and were going to his great grandma's party the following day. We were eating out for every meal (and not ordering anything healthy). We were watching tons of movies and TV and our sleep schedule was completely ridiculous. My weight was on the rise because I knew once the New Year came we were going to start the 17 Day Diet (which we began on January 3, 2010) so i was eating everything in sight.

Basically read over that entire paragraph again, change the verbs to present tense, and you'll get what I'm experiencing currently. This weekend we had Husband's family's Christmas parties. Our current shows are Friday Night Lights, Switched at Birth, The Cosby Show, and anything else I have recorded on DVR. We literally eat out at least one meal (usually two meals) every day, and I super-size everything available. I've done zero exercise and make every excuse in the book not to start. I've gained 20 lbs in the past nine weeks (not an amount I'm proud of, by any means, but honestly I expected it to be more).

Somewhere in my mind I'm justifying this over-indulgence because we plan to start Day 1 after New Years Day on the diet and exercise again. I know we can do it because we've done it before. However, I know we can fall out of it because obviously we've done that before, too. I think it's dawning on me that this will not be as cut and dry as I thought it would be a year ago.

A year ago I thought "Oh yeah, we're doing the 17 Day Diet and if I lose x lbs a month, I'll be at my goal weight in x months!" Yeah. It really hasn't happened that way. I made a goal 3-4 months ago that I would be under 200 lbs by New Years. Yesterday when I weighed I had gone back up to 255.6. Again, not as bad as I feared it would be, after having not weighed in in at least 6 weeks, but still a pretty colossal difference from where I was in October. And no where near under 200 lbs.

This is going to take me a long time. A lifetime. I will always struggle. I will always make mistakes. I will always have moments of weakness. I think what I need to focus on is that I will always keep trying. I will always start again. I will always have moments of strength.

Though I may not be strong every day, I may not always fight every temptation... I am striving toward something and I haven't given up.

So much can change (and stay the same) in a year. I am excited to see what 2012 has in store for my husband and me. Who knows what will have changed and what will be the same. I do know that, though I may not be at my goal weight, I will weigh less than I do today.

And I will be better than I am today. 

Saturday, December 17, 2011


Sometimes, it's just easier to blog than it is to try to deduce my thoughts down to a FB status update.

I don't know where to begin.

Well, I took another pregnancy test this morning. Negative, of course. And I continued with my day. Honestly, didn't even think about it much. For 12+ hours. Then tonight, as I was getting ready for bed... I sat down on the floor to play with my puppies for a bit before putting them in their beds. I was sitting on the floor, petting them, and they ran off into another room, leaving me in the bedroom. For some reason, it hit me in a rush. Nothing triggered it. I just... Didn't want to get up. I didn't want to do anything. Talk to anyone, close my eyes, move... Nothing. I just sat there. I didn't know what to do.

We bought a copy of What to Expect When You're Expecting a couple of months ago at a garage sale and I've skimmed through the first 2-3 chapters several times since then. I picked it up again tonight (as I do most nights) and was reading over several pages but had to put it down. It hit me suddenly that none of it applies to me. Even the preconception aspects. Taking pregnancy tests is a joke. I have only had one period in the past 21 months, and that was back in February. (This halt in menstruation was due to birth control)

It is a joke to continue taking pregnancy tests. Hell, I can't even use the ovulation strips I bought. None of it applies to me because my body doesn't work yet. I keep hoping that something will happen, despite every bit of knowledge I have that screams otherwise, and I need to just come to grips with it.

It's hilarious... You take birth control and are scared for years hoping to not get pregnant. Now that it's finally a possibility... What? Nothing?

Sometimes, I just want a good cry. The kind of cry that leaves you sobbing and snotty and looking like a fool. I don't cry like that anymore. I don't know why, it just doesn't come out. Tonight, I want to cry and... Nothing.

I promise I am not as mopey and outrageously out of proportion in real life (all of the time). I just need an outlet. I know my life is wonderful. I know our time will come, and that if it doesn't come it only means God has different plans for us. I know that we've only been "trying" for a short time and many people try for years and sadly never get positive results. I am incredibly selfish and have no room for complaint. I apologize if I've offended or upset anyone by this post. I should highlight it and delete it all, and maybe I will tomorrow.

But I needed something tonight.

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

The Lazy Days Post

Tomorrow I take my one and only final for this (last) Fall semester. After making an awful grade on the midterm (I'm talking failing status), I've really tried to kick my butt in gear the second half of the semester. I've gotta say, I'm pretty proud of myself. I don't think I've ever taken this good of notes in this particular professor's classes.. Or studied this much. I'm not going to make a 100%, by any means.. But I hope to at least make a B! We'll see. Pray for me!

The past few days at home have been uncharacteristically relaxed (aka lazy). I've only left the house to get food, and haven't driven out of town since I got home from school on Thursday. Which mean, it's been almost a whole week since I've been on a highway. I can sincerely say that this is probably the longest I've ever gone without having to go out of town since I've been in graduate school. It just dawned on me, too... But I've been able to tell a difference. I love staying home, I really do. The only problem I'm finding is that the longer I stay home, the more my desire to leave the house decreases. I don't want to go anywhere because staying home feels so nice! I know once I have babies and have to stay home, I'll probably be itching to leave, but right now when my only obligation is studying for one final... It feels good to stay up til 3, sleep in til 12:30... And not have any guilt about it. I know I should probably feel embarrassed to admit that sleep schedule and I guess a part of me does... But an even bigger part of me appreciates the fact that staying up and sleeping in that late is the only way I can talk to and share sleep-time with my husband. For now, this is working for us.

Now, it'll be a different story once we both start back to class schedules. But for now, yeah... I'm not gonna feel ashamed!

I love being at home during the day for another reason, also... I get to be here when the UPS man comes and brings more items we've ordered! In the past few days we've received a copy of The King's Speech (that I bought on Cyber Monday from for $7.99!!), a new peacoat for me (!!), and a mystery package from Macy's that I'm not allowed to open (!!!!!!!). I'm still waiting on our Christmas cards, a "conception kit" (15 ovulation strips and 5 pregnancy tests, all for $16.95!), and one of my lovely husband's Christmas gifts to come in... Any day now!

I just love getting stuff in the mail. Feels like Christmas every day!

Night y'all!

Monday, December 12, 2011

The Made Post

How many of you have watched MTV's show "Made"?

I used to watch it constantly when I was in high school, and have recently added it to my DVR list. Like so many other "transformation" shows I'm obsessed with ("Heavy", "Biggest Loser", "I Used to be Fat", "Extreme Makeover: Weight Loss Edition", etc.) it always gives me a sense of curiosity, motivation, and determination. "Made", in particular, begs the question... What would I be "made" to be, if given the opportunity?

I think, if expense was no issue and resources were readily available (trainer, facilities, materials, etc.) I would want to be made into a marathon runner. (Runner friends, is there a term for that?) I've always been amazed at my friends and family who participate in 5k's and marathons. It takes so much dedication, training, and skill. I've never (never ever ever) been a runner or at all enjoyed running. Having a trainer to teach me correct breathing patterns and to push me further than I push myself would be amazing. This may sound strange but a recurring theme in my dreams (this happens when I dream at least once a week) is that I run from one place to another. In my dream, it's always so easy... My chest never hurts, my knees never hurt, my feet never hurt... And it always feels like second nature. When I wake up from these dreams, I feel like I could run for miles. I feel like I want to run for miles. And then I really wake up and realize that it's not a possibility for me in the condition my lungs and body are in right now. To have someone recondition my body and teach me how to experience that freeing, conquer-the-world feeling I get in my dreams would be unbelievable. Maybe one day our budget will allow for me to have a personal trainer.

What do you want to be "made" into?

Sunday, December 11, 2011

The "Have a Little Faith" Post

I recorded a movie on ABC a week ago called "Have a Little Faith". There was an episode of Dr. Phil about it and it looked interesting, so I DVR'd it. I finally got around to watching it tonight and was really impressed. Well, impressed doesn't seem like the right word. Ya know those moments of conviction, as a Christian (or probably a person of any religion) when God speaks when you didn't even know you should be listening? That's what I loved about this movie. Rabbi Louis was (and is, even in death) an inspirational man. At the beginning of the movie, Mitch Albom (author of the best-sellers Tuesdays With Morrie, 5 People You Meet in Heaven, and For One More Day) is asked by his childhood rabbi, Albert Louis, to give a eulogy at his funeral upon his death. This prompts years of visits between the author and rabbi so Albom can get to know the person he will be speaking about. My favorite parts of the movie are these visits. Rabbi Louis has a light-hearted and warm spirit and the way he explains his beliefs are so eloquent and simple (sound familiar?). Here is an example:

(As Rabbi Albert Louis and Mitch Albom pass a Hindu woman in the grocery store, she waves and says, "Hello, Rabbi.")

Louis: Nice young woman. Hindu. Fascinating religion. Such customs.
Albom: Aren't you supposed to cheerlead your own religion?
Louis: OUR own religion. I do. I think ours is an infinitely beautiful faith.
Albom: Well, if our religion is so special, how can you be supportive of others?
Louis: Did God make trees?
Albom: What?
Louis: Did God make trees?
Albom: Yeah.
Louis: Why trees? Why not a tree? I mean, he's God. What He makes is perfect, so why not one perfect tree for the whole earth? Instead, he gave us the oak, the spruce, the elm, the redwood. So maybe faith is the same: Many trees, the branches all going to him. 
Albom: Have you looked at the world lately? The trees are attacking each other.
Louis: That's not faith. That's hate.
Albom: Engaged in the name of religion.
Louis: And wrongly. "Thou shalt not kill." "Honor thy neighbor." If I mean these things and the other guy means these things... What do ya get?
Albom: Peace on Earth.

Just a little something to think about, as we go into this holiday season.

Night y'all!

P.S. I highly recommend finding a way to see this movie, and I fully intend on purchasing and reading Mitch Albom's book Have a Little Faith, upon which the movie is based.

Friday, December 9, 2011

The First Last Day

Sigh... Completed my last day of fall semester class/clinic EVER. Feels so good to mark these "lasts" off the list. Can't wait for my very LAST day of class coming up this Spring, but I guess I'll just have to enjoy every moment until then. Have two really great clinical rotations lined up before graduation and I can't wait to experience what both sites have to offer! With each location I go through I've gained more and more experience and my interest and excitement for this field has grown exponentially--particularly in the past 16 weeks. I've learned even more what I dislike and more importantly what I love about speech-language pathology and am so thankful for the opportunities I've been blessed with. The clients I've seen have taught me so much and my supervisors (undergrad, grad, and rotation supervisors) have been unbelievably helpful and supportive. I can't say there aren't still moments when I think "What the heck have I gotten myself into?" but for the most part, I am [finally] so excited to find a job I love... And finally make some real $$$$!

And on that note, I will leave you with this little morsel of heaven:

Yes, that is my puppy... Sleeping on my face. My little nap time guard pup. 

Night y'all!

Wednesday, December 7, 2011

The Confessions Post

So I have a few confessions to share with you all... 

You all could have probably guessed by now that I stepped off the "diet" train. Since my Biggest Loser group ended, my healthy diet/exercise plan has gone down the toilet. I haven't weighed in because I'm afraid of how much I've gained. Fortunately, my clothes still fit (although my waist band does feel more snug). But I can feel the changes. My tummy has grown and always feels bloated and I can feel the extra weight on my rear and thighs protest when I run. Sorry for the details, but I need to remember what one month of eating crap does to me. Going out to eat every day, eating bigger proportions than I think I've ever managed in my life... My food addiction has come back full force. I don't have an excuse, and I know I need to make a change. I'm not that far away from where I was. Like I said, I haven't weighed in so I don't know how much I've gained, but I kind of like the idea of judging where I'm at based on how I feel. I know it would only take a week or two for my body to feel better. Right now I'm exhausted all the time and it can only be because I'm malnourished (since we all know it's not cos I'm pregnant!). I haven't been drinking the right amount of water and definitely haven't been eating fruits and vegetables. It's nuts how easy it is to get off track.

Husband and I are going grocery shopping this weekend to stock up the fridge and pantry again. We'd do it now, but we're low on funds and need to wait until after payday. We aren't going to follow the 17 Day Diet to a point like before until after the new year, but we need to start eating at home more instead of going out.

I'm hoping that will get us started in the right direction. Now that the cat's out of the bag and everyone knows we're hoping to have a baby soon, I can be honest in saying one of my main goals for losing weight is to decrease risks of complications during pregnancy/delivery and being altogether healthier for our child. Not to mention I want people to know I'm pregnant, not just think I'm a big girl (which is true, but I'm just sayin'..). Superficial, but oh well! I want it all and if I'm willing to work for it, I think I should get it.

Speaking of working for it, did anybody else see the episode of Dr. Phil talking about the P.I.N.K. Method? Last year he was endorsing the 17 Day Diet and that's how we got hooked on it and now he's doing this new one and I'm wondering.. Is this typical? Does he do a new one every year? I looked into the PINK Method cos it sounds pretty great (and similar to 17 Day Diet) but it's WAYYYYYYY more expensive so I don't think that's happening for us. Anyways, just curious if anyone else saw it.

By the way, I was really overwhelmed with the number of comments I got regarding the last post. I was sure I lost all of you readers due to my lack of posting as of late... It's so wonderful to feel so supported. I need to step up my game, return the favor, and start commenting again. I've been very selfish lately because I needed to figure out a few things, but I'm back and ready to dive into the blogosphere again! =]

Night y'all!

Monday, December 5, 2011

The Single Line Post

It's hard to know where to start. It's been nearly two months since I've written anything so there's a lot I could catch you up on.

We have a new baby in our lives, as of October 22nd. She was born on August 8th and is now 17 weeks old. Her name is Leia. Her and Luke get along beautifully, and we couldn't have chosen a more perfect little one to add to our family. She's such a joy.

Probably the biggest change in our life has been something we've kept more private. Over the past couple of months, we've been talking and praying with one another about starting a family. Well, a family in addition to our puppies, that is.

We decided that I would stop getting my birth control shot and have not been using any type of birth control since September. It is something we have talked with one another about for several months now and decided that now is the right time. Were we to become pregnant now, both of us would be graduated and into careers. We decided from the beginning that choosing to not take birth control doesn't mean that we're "trying", because we don't want to put that kind of pressure on ovulation schedules and things like that. We wanted to relieve the pressure of NOT getting pregnant. That's always been the goal: "Well, we can't get pregnant now because the time isn't right". Now, since we're not taking BC to stop a pregnancy, whenever the time is right, God will bless us with a child.

I try so hard to maintain that attitude.

But for the past six days I've been feeling nauseous sporadically throughout the day (Note: I haven't thrown up since elementary school, so nausea isn't something that happens to me often). I've been smelling things I normally wouldn't smell. I just have this feeling. And that's silly to say because I don't know what it feels like to be pregnant. But it just felt real this time.

And then a single line appeared on the test.

I try so hard to maintain that attitude. I know God's timing is better than my own. I just feel like everything I've been experiencing for the past six days and the "feeling" I had was in my head. And that scares me. I feel like when/if I ever am pregnant, I won't believe it. I don't know how many pregnancy tests I've taken, all with a negative result. We wanted to wait until Friday to take it, but I couldn't wait anymore because of all the "symptoms" and the feeling I've had lately. At the same time, I procrastinated doing it this morning because I was afraid it would be negative. And then it was.

I shouldn't complain because I know some people try for years and are never able to conceive. I am just fearful that that could be us. It's hard for me to admit that, because we will be happy with or without children and I'm being selfish.

It was just a hard day, and tomorrow will be better.
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