Thursday, December 25, 2008

Merry Christmas!!!

This Christmas was perfection. Complete, utter perfection.

I only hope you had as joyful and wonderful a Christmas :).

More to come...

Tuesday, December 23, 2008


"Time for my daily banana..."

"You don't stand a chance against me, Banana!"

"Mmmmmm...poor Banana never saw it comin'."

And remember Ana's "Banana Episode"? I guess it's the bananas???

Monday, December 22, 2008

Sunday, December 21, 2008


We survived the week! It was jam-packed but I made it (and on VERY little sleep, mind you!). I'd love to write all about it but Christmas Eve is knockin' on my door and I have a couch full of projects that are calling to be done! I do have an entire list of stuff I want to write about so, to help keep me honest, I think I'll go ahead and list some of them.

  • Maddie's 18 month letter (yes, I KNOW she's almost 19 months!)
  • the great Christmas things we've done this past week
  • an update on the ol' fat tracker (sneak peek - this week was not great but it wasn't awful either)
  • a post inspired by something I read about marriage (deep, just wait)
  • a letter to another certain someone I'm seem to kinda fancy these days :)
  • some "Chit Chattin' with Ana" updates - there are SOOOO many!!!
So I'll do my best to write it all while it's still fresh but this week is going to be another doozy!!! Is that even the right word!?!? Anyhoo, with my mom's birthday, our annual girls' tamale night, Christmas Eve, Christmas Day, my bff's birthday, and a Christmas celebration with Anthony's side of the family, and another celebrating my awesome friends I'm sure I'll totally get to it :).

Until soooon!

Monday, December 15, 2008

My Week

I'm writing it down for sanity's sake....

Mon. - playgroup. Finish recipe books.
Tues. - having friends over for lunch. Go to Hobby Lobby and get the materials for some gifts for Friday.
Tues. night - Marisa's coming to take our pictures!
Wed. - Christmas dinner with my crazy mom friends :). Make gifts for Friday.
Thurs. - get ready for Fri. Get food and activities together. Finalize for Saturday's party.
Fri. - little Christmas party for the girls' bestest friends!
Fri. early evening - watch 3 little ones (plus my little ones) while their mamas do some good for society.
Fri. night - go out with our bff's.
Sat. - throw a birthday party for my mom.
In my free time - raise kids, keep house, make husband happy, and eat...but not bad cuz I'm still on a diet!

Ok, Monday down, the rest of the week to go.

Two little bunnies...

Ana at 18 months...

Maddie at 17 months...

Sunday, December 14, 2008

Day 7: Already off track

No, no. Not with the "diet". With the updates. Remember? I vowed to update 3 times a week. Rememberrrrrrr? I should know better. I wish I was one of those people that actually did the things she said she was going to do all the time. Seriously. I wish I was THAT person. I'm really good friends with THAT person. But THAT person I am not. Life always seems to throw me off course, off my "plan". "If you want to hear God laugh tell Him your plan". No joke!

Anyhoo, back to my regularly scheduled "Fat Tracker" :).

  1. I successfully got through a Christmas playgroup without overindulging!!! This is big. No, this is HUGE! I can't even begin to describe the amount of food at these things. And it's good food - food made by mamas with little kids that are all about indulging (or at least wanting to impress other mamas with their fabulous recipes!). Like I said, HUGE conquest!
  2. I did AWESOME the first 4 days. I stayed right at my target calorie intake of 1200 and can already feel the difference. Since I'm not weighing myself I don't see the numbers but I feel less, shall we say, puffy? Yeah, let's say less puffy.
Ok, so I say I did awesome the first four days not because I fell off the wagon but because days five and six were back to back parties. So I did indulge. BUT I indulged in things like fruit and tortilla chips....and drinks and guacamole. Not the best, but I did write it into my plan.

This is going to be another busy week so wish me luck - 1 playgroup, 2 Christmas parties, and a birthday party. Good luck to me :)!

Countdown to Christmas: Days 8 - 13

Ok, busy week (hence the lack of updates!). But here's the wrap up:

Day 8: BIG Christmasy day! A Christmas party with all of our friends from my mom's group that included a visit from a jolly old fella. What did they think of him? See for yourself :)....

Then, we were lucky enough to be invited to Karmen & Alex's "Rockin' Christmas" show. We trekked through the snow and made our way to Oswego to see the girls' favorite cousins perform in their school's Christmas extravaganza! The show, followed by some pizza and a couple of over-tired babies amounted to some big fun for these two.

Day 9: Hot chocolate and "A Charlie Brown Christmas" under some blankets. Precious.

Days 10 -13: Christmas shopping, putting up some lights, and some Christmas movies. Quite frankly, these days blended together for me.

Back to the daily updates!

Monday, December 8, 2008

Day 1: I'm Fat

OK. As previously stated, this is it. I'm hanging out here at rock bottom feelin' all sorry for myself thinking I've never looked or felt so out of shape. I spent the weekend partyin' it up down here but today's a new day. It's a new week and I'm ready to make some changes. I realize I must be completely crazy to try and get my act together right before Christmas. I get that I must be delusional to hop on a diet as we approach countless get-togethers where food is the guest of honor. But I need to do this and I need to do it now.

So today I start a diet. A full-out-count-my-calories-never-actually-done-this-before diet. This is new for me and I'm not sure how either of us will do (me and food) but I NEED TO DO IT. And this is where I'm going to write all about it. This is where I'm going to hold myself accountable.

So here's the plan:
  1. Take in between 1300 t0 1500 calories a day with room to "induldge" on party days.
  2. Rethink my definition of "induldge". It does NOT have to mean that I eat until I physically, not just figuritively, need to roll out of a party.
  3. Do some sort of exercise each day. Even the smallest effort will count!
  4. Do NOT weigh myself. Numbers only discourage so instead I'll measure my successes but how I feel and what the heck I can fit into.
  5. Find a target pair of pants that I'm dying to get into.
  6. Write about my successes and failures at least 3 times a week.
So this is Day 1. And I'm fat. I feel fat. I look fat. My clothes keeping screaming at me "You're fat!!! I don't fit you!!!!" So ok, we go from here. This is where I begin so here I gooooooo!!!!!!!!!!

Sunday, December 7, 2008

Flashback: Ana

I ran across some film from my old camera that had never been developed so I took it in. And what I got back has me all gooey with nostalgia. It's so hard to remember our big girl being this small. Oh, how I miss it.

At 9 months...

With Nana...

With Papa...

With Auntie Vicky...

At 15 months...

Man, does it go by fast.

Countdown to Christmas: Days 6 & 7

Yesterday was a rough day - for me, for the girls, with the weather, with everything it seemed. So as much as I hate to actually put this into words, we did NOTHING to countdown Christmas yesterday. I was exhausted and just not up for a whole heck of a lot so I'll hastily admit I surrendered to my utter laziness.

But today, today we had QUITE the Christmas countdown day! The girls and I made spritz cookies in the morning with the help of our cousin Christina. I have to say, as far as cookie recipes go, this is one of the easiest. Some butter, sugar, flour, baking soda, salt, and an egg. Seriously. That's it. Super easy. Super quick. And super yummy.

Ana loved it of course as she loves all things cooking/baking/helping/being all grown up like mama :). And this was Miss Maddie's first time helping to make the cookies and she did wonderfully! Complete impatience aside, once we got to the decorating part she was in heaven! I'm pretty sure her little fingers are permanently red but hey, small price to pay, right? Christmas activity #1, check!

While the girls napped I took a run over to the Super Wal-Mart and managed to get some more Christmas shopping done. I found what I'm sure will be THE HIT of Christmas morning for girls. I can't wait to see them open it!!!! Christmas activity #2, check!

After dinner, as we racked our brains thinking of something fun to do I found a few Christmas-y games that Ana could play on the computer. Needless to say she LOVED that. What's that, you say? I get to put my sticky little hands all over your computer AND you're not going to yell at me? Ah, a dream come true! Christmas activity #3, check check!

So I think I should be pardoned for yesterday :).

Saturday, December 6, 2008

Countdown to Christmas: Day 5

Yesterday the girls and I braved the very cold weather to get some Christmas shopping done! I know these "Christmas Countdown" events are supposed to be magical and all but this was so not. It was too cold, too crowded, and too boring for these two. But hey, at least we were together, right?

Daddy did come pick them up and I got to have a nice 2 1/2 hour lunch with my super best friend, Dana. I needed it (both the Chipotle AND the company). So as far as an event for mama goes, I'd consider it an utter success. Thank you, my sweet, sweet friend!

Friday, December 5, 2008

Rock Bottom

This morning I put on one of my husband's sweatshirts as part of my "outfit". My 225 lb, 6'1" husband's sweatshirts. And not in some half-hearted attempt to be comfy either. But rather because almost nothing I own fits me.

I'm here. I'm at rock bottom.

I figure I have two choices. I can either buy clothes that fit or I can lose some of this holiday weight (yeah, I do know we've only had one holiday so far!). And since the ol' budget doesn't exactly allow for a new wardrobe of fat clothes, I guess that leaves me with the latter.

So, I SWEAR, this is it!!!!!

Countdown to Christmas: Day 4

Last night the girls and I read EVERY Christmas book they own. They have, like, twelve. It's not like they're novels or anything but we did read them all. And we read them while sitting under the tree :).

Wednesday, December 3, 2008

Countdown to Christmas

As part of our countdown to Christmas this year we here in Ullsmithland have made it our mission to do at least one Christmas-related event for every day leading up to the BIG day. And here's what we have to far:

Dec. 1 - The girls and I put up the tree in their loft. It was pre-lit so I just plugged it in and they decorated it themselves! Maddie didn't quite get it but Ana LOOOOVED it. "It's soooo beautiful, Mommy. This tree is just so beautiful!" is how she described it.

Dec. 2 - We put up the big tree in the family room. Once again, a HUGE hit with the sweetpeas.

Dec. 3 - Perhaps my very favorite Christmastime memory to date (not just this year!). The four of us curled up on the couch, ate popcorn, drank hot chocolate, and watched the 1964 classic "Rudolf" cartoon. This, my friends, is what it's all about :).

I would love to say that I have a list of our daily events to come but honestly I have no clue what's next. And you know, I kinda like it that way!


I'll be honest. It's been a rough few months. A rough year if we're going there (which I'm not). But today I felt really happy for the first time in a long time. Like, genuinely happy. That kind of happy that comes from the inside out. It seeped through my skin and I left it all over my kitchen floor.

This little family that I get to call my own, this saving grace of mine, is the only thing capable of making me this happy.

As I was cooking dinner and the girls shared a chair in the middle of the kitchen, Ana asked me to put on her "party music" (the Fiesta CD from her birthday). I put it on and instantly Miss Maddie began her bootlicious shake. Ana followed with her little girl bounce and soon Mommy and Daddy joined in. So there we were. The four of us - two in pajamas, one in work clothes, and the other in a sundress (don't ask) - breakin' it down. Taking turns dancing with each other and then dancing all together. It was something out of a movie. I wanted to grab my camera and capture it but decided instead to just live it. I danced and laughed with the loves of my life. In that moment I was reminded just how lucky we are. How ridiculously blessed we are.

Our life isn't perfect. It's as far from it right now as I can remember. But it's funny how in the midst of trying times and hardships, God never fails to show His grace. In the eyes of my sweet toddler. In the laugh of my baby. In the simplest things. He humbles me with the unconditional love of these girls and reminds me that even when I feel as though I'm failing I am everything to them - everything they want and everything they need. How lucky I am to have children I am blissfully in love with. How lucky I am to have children I get to hug and kiss and care for. How lucky I am to, even for a moment, be able to sigh and just know I have everything I need.