Huge news!

You know how when someone tells you a secret, and then they say not to tell anyone, and it nearly kills you because you're dying to spill the beans? Yeah, that's how I've been feeling for two months now.

I have been SO SO SO excited to share this on my blog ever since I found out about it in July (on Noah's birthday, actually). I had to wait until I had permission to share it on my blog, and it's been killing me ;)

One year without injury

Being sick is so frustrating! What started as a sore throat for a few days turned into some serious sinus congestion. Now, instead of a very hoarse voice, I just sound like I'm talking while plugging my nose. I've also been coughing quite a bit.

Poor Noah is still having symptoms from his virus, and stayed home from school today because he was coughing so much. When my kids were little, there was one year that they were both constantly sick with bronchitis. If it wasn't one of them, it was the other. Noah's even turned into walking pneumonia. I had to give them breathing treatments several times a day, and stock up on Mucinex.

I never realized how awful bronchitis was until I got it that same year (all three of us were sick at the same time). I would have coughing fits that were so violent I thought I would literally cough up a lung.

Feeling sick

I honestly can't even remember the last time I was sick. It's been such a long time! However, when I woke up a couple of days ago, my throat was SO sore. When I tried to talk, my voice was really hoarse, and I was clearing my throat all day. My kids had the same symptoms a few days ago, starting with the sore throat and then progressing to major nasal congestion. I just hope whatever I have doesn't progress to that!

I had already planned on this weekend being a rest day weekend, because I had such a crazy busy week. It felt good to stay so busy, but at the same time, I really wanted just an hour to relax! I decided to start working on a project that I've been avoiding for a few years now... organizing my photos on my computer.

Busy busy busy

I have been so, so busy lately! I've been looking for a chance to sit down a write a post, but things have been crazy around here. I have about an hour right now to write a quick post. (Not complaining--being busy feels good!)

I've been doing really well with the calorie counting. It still just astonishes me that it's so much easier  (for me, anyway) to eat well and exercise in September versus July. Since I started logging my food again (a couple of weeks ago, after we got home from vacation), I have felt much better, too. More energy, more awake in the mornings, sleeping better, etc.

All I've been doing is following the same things I did last year, when I started calorie counting. It worked so well then, that there was no reason to change it.

Some current favorite things

I used to do periodic posts about thing things that I'm into lately, and it's been a long time since I've done one. I always like reading those posts by other bloggers, because I may think of something I haven't thought of before, or discover products I didn't know about. There's nothing super exciting on this list, but through the fall, I'm going to try and remember to take pictures of things that I enjoy so I can make a list of current favorites at the end of the season. Anyway, here are some current things I'm enjoying...

#1. Cold Oats! I've written about these a few times lately. It's been too hot for cooking breakfast, and I (finally) started to get tired of having Larabars. I hadn't eaten much oatmeal over the last year, and bringing back the cold oats has been handy!

Back to school?

This morning, instead of going for a run, I dropped off the kids at school and went right to the rec center to get in the pool. I had to be done and ready to leave the house for my therapy appointment by 9:15, so I didn't have time to meet Andrea (she can't meet until 8:45). It was pretty boring without her! I swam back and forth for a while (it felt like an hour). Every time I was swimming one direction, I could see a clock, and it seemed like the minute had wasn't even moving.

I was too embarrassed to get out of the pool after just five minutes, so I kept going. Finally, at 15 minutes in, I couldn't take it anymore. I got out and showered, then headed home to eat breakfast before going to my appointment.

Netflix! (And steak fajita bowls)

Holy smokes. Big news, Friends... the documentary is now on Netflix!

I've already written several posts about the film itself, so I won't be redundant. But, I know that a lot of you were hoping to see the film on Netflix, so now is your chance! This is just SO CRAZY to me--me, on Netflix? What?!

I asked the other members of my From Fat to Finish Line Ragnar team if they would be interested in sharing an update about themselves, since the documentary was actually filmed a few years ago. Hopefully, I'll get something to post about them soon!

A lot of my friends have been curious if I was paid for doing the film, so I imagine some of you may be curious, too.

The answer is no--I signed a release waiving any claim to any money the film may make. That said, though, I didn't invest any of my own money, either. Jen and Angela used a LOT of money from their own pockets to produce the film, and I wasn't willing to do that. I had no idea how far this whole thing would actually go!

Also, making a documentary is very expensive, and it doesn't usually result in a big payoff. Most documentaries don't make much (if any) money. So, I have no real ties to this film other than the fact that I was in it. The team was actually made up of several of my blog readers who had written me to share their stories!

I have met some amazing people and gotten some fantastic opportunities because of this film, and I'm so, so grateful for that. The fact that it is now available on NETFLIX is terrifying, exciting, thrilling... I'm not even sure how to describe it. But anyway, if you haven't seen the film yet, and you'd like to, you have the Netflix option now ;)

And if you're a new visitor to my blog because of seeing the film... welcome! I wish I had a more exciting post up today, but much of my blog is just about my ordinary, everyday life in maintaining a large weight loss. Here is my About Me page, where you can get the gist of who I am and what my blog is all about. I would suggest starting there!

Yesterday was Jerry's birthday. He's now 36 years old. When did that happen?! We've been together for half of our lives, which just blows my mind. I was planning to make him a German chocolate cake from scratch (his favorite), but he asked me not to. He's been doing really well with his eating lately, too, and he was afraid that the cake would throw him off. After confirming that he truly did not want cake (I didn't want to not make it, if he was secretly hoping that I was going to anyway), I decided to put the effort into making a yummy birthday dinner instead.

Jerry loves Chipotle, and we don't have one around here, so I decided to make a "Chipotle bar" where we could create our own. I marinated skirt steak all day, and I made cilantro-lime rice (I just added True Lime to the cooking water, and then added cilantro after the rice was done cooking). I sliced a bunch of peppers and onions, and cooked them with a homemade fajita seasoning.

I made a spread on the counter of the steak, rice, fajita veggies, fiesta corn, seasoned black beans, lettuce, salsa, guacamole, sour cream, and cheese, and we each made our own "steak fajita bowl" for dinner.

Everything turned out so good! I dare say that it tasted even better than Chipotle. The rice was my favorite part, which is interesting, because I'm not a fan of cilantro; but, I could eat a giant bowl of that rice all by itself. Jerry was thrilled with his birthday dinner, and said he was glad there was no cake, because he was stuffed. (Also, he'd had a "birthday doughnut" for breakfast at work.)

For my close friends' birthdays, I like to share a photo collage on their Facebook walls, usually photos of the two of us together. When I was looking through pictures on my computer for Jerry's birthday, I found so many silly ones of him that I thought would make a funner collage:

These pictures span about 17 years!

Haha! He's goofy and fun-loving, and that's what I love most about him :)


Branching out the exercise

I could have sworn I wrote about Dog Day at the Pool, but I guess I didn't yet. It was so fun! As I said, the local wave pool closes for the season, and before they do, they have a "Dog Day". It's $5 to bring your dog to play in the pool for a few hours. We took Joey last year, and he loved it. I was excited to take him again.

Once again, he had a blast! He was never sure what to do, but he was so excited to be there. He kept running all over the place in the pool, grabbing toys and then promptly dropping them. Every time someone would throw a toy for their own dog, Joey saw it and ran after it, too. I wish he'd try out the deeper water, because I'm curious if he can swim, but he likes to stay where he can touch. (The owner of Lucky Puppy, his doggy daycare, said that he prefers the shallow end of the pool there as well).

Like a torpedo, right into the water


I can't believe what a big difference there has been in my mood and motivation levels this week. I love having my kids home from school during the summer, but being off of a good routine makes me feel so unproductive and unmotivated. I talked to my therapist ("C") about it at my session on Friday, and she pointed out that I'm much busier during the school year, so the summertime is a big change.

I didn't realize it until this week, but it's true--I stay very busy on school days, trying to get as much done as possible while the kids are at school. In the summer, I seem to lose all motivation. That makes me feel unproductive and "useless", which leads to a depressive episode. Anyway, C gave me some ideas for how to prevent that from happening, which will be easier now that I've identified the problem.

Adopt, don't shop

This post is sponsored by Purina. As always, all my thoughts and opinions are honest.

This is a post I should have written a long time ago, but it never really occurred to me. I write about my pets often on my blog, and if I haven't made it clear, they are a huge part of my life. We currently have three cats and a dog, and I truly can't imagine my life without them!

All of our pets were strays or in a shelter before we took them in. I just don't see the point in buying a pet from a store or breeder when there are millions of pets that need homes. I also choose to adopt adult pets, because you get a good sense of their personalities; but, there are still kittens and puppies at shelters and rescues that need homes.

Back to school

Yesterday was the first day of school for my boys. Noah is now in 7th grade, and Eli is now in 5th grade. They are both at the same school this year, which makes things so convenient. They start and end school at the same time (last year, it was an hour apart), so I can drop them both off and pick them both up together.

As I establish a routine for this fall, I decided to establish a bedtime for myself in order to get more sleep. Since I get up at 6:00 with the kids, I'm going to go to bed at 10:00. And instead of watching TV before bed, I'm going to read for 30 minutes. Last night, I did just that--and this morning, I woke up without an alarm at 5:45.

Home again, home again, jiggety-jig

When I titled this, I chose the title because it's something my mom always used to say when we got back from vacation. I just looked it up on Google, to see if there was some sort of origin for the phrase, and apparently, it's from a nursery rhyme!

To market, to market, to buy a fat pig,
Home again, home again, jiggety-jig.

Anyway, we are home from vacation. Absolutely nothing went as planned, but we actually ended up having a really great time. We left home Thursday, so here is a brief rundown of our trip:

Family vacation in a tropical storm

Hello from Virginia Beach!

I will take the time to write a better post when I can, but I just wanted to share a couple of pics from the sunny beach ;)