Wednesday, July 10, 2013

Little Life Lessons

1. I don't care what you say. My itty bitty excuse for a ponytail is adorable.
2. Zoe says, "Relax. Just chill."
 3. For happiness, just add water.
 4. It's hard to look pensive with a neon yellow tutu and a lollipop.
5. Genuine excitement and gratitude are always appreciated.
6. Every little girl should get to dance with her Daddy.
7. Giving is far sweeter than receiving.

I don't have a photo for this one, but I have to remind myself of it a few times a week.
8. Sometimes, TV is the answer. It just is. My brain isn't fried from Sesame Street and my kids' brains won't be, either.

Tuesday, July 9, 2013

Cajz Sunday

Cajz? I was trying to shorten "casual." Anyway...
My MIL was in town over the weekend and Sunday morning consisted of breakfast at home, picking up lunch for the hubs while he worked, and lunch out. I changed into a dress for an afternoon baby shower and then back into my shorts for the remainder of the day. Still not sure how I'm feeling about shorts... The important thing is that I'm wearing them, regardless of our previous hate/hate relationship.
 tanks, shorts, sandals: Old Navy
I don't know if I've told y'all about my knees before... Something tells me that I have and that it was pretty recent. I'll chock it up to mommy brain if I'm repeating myself, though. The dark spots on my knees are sun damage from years and years of tanning and not exfoliating the dry patches. So, basically, don't go in the tanning beds because they cause cancer. And ugly spots on your knees. I always think about retouching them, then remember that I'm one of those real people that likes to show how things are without Photoshop. So, there you have it. And I'm not wearing make-up, either. BAM!

Monday, July 8, 2013

Country Fried

There's something sweet to be said about a ruffly dress and boots. I just want to twirl and shout Taylor Swift lyrics from the rooftops, pretending I'm "twenty-two-ooh-ooh-ooh." No one has to know the truth. I've always loved this dress for its youthful, flirty flow, but I always wear it in the fall with a chunky cardigan. I'm glad I pulled it out of the back of the closet for church on Saturday night, because it just made me feel pretty. I love how a piece of clothing can do that.
dress: c/o Maurices, boots: Soda, belt: New York & Company, necklace: was my Nana's

What's a piece in your closet that you usually wear in another season, but could pull it out and style it for summer?

Saturday, July 6, 2013

Red, White, Blue

Better late than never, yes?
Here's a recap of our July 4th. It was absolutely fantastic, laid back, and we got to spend some time with Clarke, so I couldn't have asked for a better day. We spent most of it at the pool, I cooked a completely untraditional, but healthy and yummy feast, and we accidentally ran into my girls from church at the fireworks. Sadie had her big kid friends, Norah had her baby friends, Clarke had man friends, and I had my girls. It was absolutely perfect. Couldn't have asked for better weather or a better way to celebrate our nation's birthday. Hope yours was awesome, too!
 The littles wore matching dresses from Old Navy.
 My dress and sandals are also from Old Navy. I made my scarf/necklace out of an old dress of Sadie's because I didn't have anything red.
Festive family photo!
 Sadie with three of her buddies... I just adore how cute this photo is.
 Caprese salad, turkey and spinach stuffed sweet potato, and roasted prosciutto-wrapped asparagus
 Beauty and the tree
Norah loved the fireworks. :)

Tuesday, July 2, 2013

A Little Food and Health Story

Two years ago, I had some extensive testing done in order to find out more about my heart and cholesterol. I did it because almost everyone on my dad's side of the family has either had a heart attack or a near-heart attack and they all have sky-high cholesterol. Mine has been moderately high since college and I wanted to know why it wasn't going down, even though I seemed to be doing/eating all the right things. This test was $3500 and my insurance barely covered any of it, but I really, really wanted to know what was going on. I found out a lot of things, like the size and shape of my cholesterol are typical for artery clogging, which is genetic. I also found out that 75% of my high cholesterol is genetic. Fantastic. My doctor put me on medicine right away, because, well, he's a doctor. He told me that I was basically out of luck and that I couldn't do anything about it. 
Wouldn't you guess that the medicine he put me on causes brain damage and body deformities in a growing fetus?
We were planning on getting pregnant in the near future. Hah. Screw that medicine. Anything that can do that to a baby isn't safe to put into my body, regardless of whether or not I was going to be pregnant. 
I ALSO had some diabetes probability testing done. Did you know you could do that? You can. My dad is diabetic and was a very late-onset, Type II case. My test results showed that if I continued on my current path, I would be diabetic by the time I was 40. Newsflash: Did you know that you are born with X amount of insulin and when it's gone, it's gone? That's why people develop Type II. Their insulin runs out! Your pancreas releases insulin to break down the sugars in your body. If you are eating too much of those sugars or if you are sedentary and don't allow activity to burn your sugars, your pancreas is in overdrive and then... POOF. It's done. 
My husband also has several diabetic family members, so as we embark on our 30th birthdays (his is in September and mine is in February), all of this has really started to hit home. I've talked to him about it a zillion and a half times, but it took his boss (a man) to break it down in terms to which he could relate.
I guess when I talk about it, I'm just nagging.
Insert: We're gonna do better.
left: whole grain rotini, red and white quinoa, watermelon
right: chopped chicken breast, zucchini and squash, diced grapes and strawberries (for little hands), whole grapes and halved strawberries

I don't know about you, but when I'm *doing better,* I need to PLAN. I generally plan our dinners, but I haven't been planning very healthy ones. I've been planning CHEAP ones. You know what that means in our house? Pasta. Tacos. Sandwiches. Basically, we are going to start eating like we ARE diabetic, because that's the way we really should eat and it's how we need to teach our girls, who have this disease running rampant in their genes, how to eat. Although our sugar is fine right now, our pancreases (Surprisingly, that's right. I want to say "pancreai." That's what four years of Latin will do to you.) are angry!
How, pray tell, does one eat a diabetic diet?
Really, the math of it is simple. 45 grams of carbohydrates each for breakfast, lunch, and dinner, plus 15 grams of carbohydrates each for two snacks. We have to be careful, here, though. You can get all crazy Atkins on this and start eating all the high fat and protein foods that will cause the cholesterol to shoot through the roof (which we know I can't afford). And although fruits, veggies, and whole grains are all important mainstays in a healthy, well-rounded diet, they also have carbohydrates. We know all carbs aren't created equally, however, when we're counting, we're counting them all.
Here's my messily handwritten meal plan for the next two weeks. I'm not really sure if you can read it, so if you have questions or want me to type it out, email me.
 And I just received the August issue of Family Circle in the mail... Take a look at that delicious gem. I'll be making that after my next stop to the grocery store! YUM!
I'm excited to embark on this new way of eating to benefit my health and the health of my whole family. Do you have any suggestions, blogs, websites, or recipes that might help us out? Leave a comment! I'd be so appreciative!