For my Amazing Single Mom on Father’s Day

“…in spite of incredible adversity, you are both my mother and my father.”

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Three-hundred and sixty-five days a year, you are my parent. You sweat, toil, and work for me every moment. Alone and doing the job of two, in spite of incredible adversity, you are both my mother and my father.

You’ve wiped my tears, patched up my scrapes, read to me, helped me with homework, and have always freely given hugs, love, support and advice. Feeding my body and nourishing my soul, you’ve been the pillar upon which I leaned, embraced, and pushed against while I struggled to understand myself and the boundaries of the world around me.  Continue reading “For my Amazing Single Mom on Father’s Day”

Day Two: Huffing and Puffing

“Lucky for me, the air is already hot and muggy at 6 a.m. in Florida, so I was able to work up a sweat just by stepping out of the front door.”

It’s day two for me of Over-the-hill & Running. I got up at the butt-crack of dawn this morning, donned my running shoes, struggled into my tighter-than-a-corset sports bra, and headed outside to run (ie: huff and puff) up and down hills. Lucky for me, the air is already hot and muggy at 6 a.m. in Florida, so I was able to work up a sweat just by stepping out of the front door.

More good news: today was easier than the day before. I was able to run 60 seconds (albeit, still at a snail’s pace) and walk 120 seconds for 6 cycles, which equaled almost 20 minutes of cardio. I was so sore from the last workout that I didn’t notice the jiggling junk in my trunk this time and I felt energized enough when I returned home to do some abdominal and core strengthening. Continue reading “Day Two: Huffing and Puffing”

Over-the-hill & Running

“…I thought I was going to die. I could feel the extra junk in my trunk flopping around as I struggled to breathe and hoof it half a block …”

Today I started a new fitness journey –  in truth I’m revisiting my old frenemy from high school: running. I turned 40-something yesterday, ate three pieces of chocolate cake and had a strawberry daiquiri at my birthday dinner. I enjoyed every.single.minute.of.it until I awoke this morning with sore joints, a foggy brain, and 4 extra pounds on the scale. As I peered through hazy eyes at the numbers on the scale, I knew I could avoid it no longer – I had to work harder and intensify my workouts.

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I’m not a huge fan of exercise in general, but I have been successful using a rowing machine at home and doing floor exercises to strengthen my core.  For the past 3 months, however, I’ve been stuck at an annoying 10 pounds above my weight goal. I’ve known that I had to try something else, but like my preschooler says “I DON’T WANT TO!” In the back of my mind, a little voice kept whispering to me that I needed to start running again. Ugh. I hate running.  Continue reading “Over-the-hill & Running”

A Birthday Wish

“…I needed some nature therapy to lift my spirits and remind me that there is still beauty in this world…”

After the horrific news yesterday, I needed some nature therapy to lift my spirits and remind me that there is still beauty in this world so I spent some time in my garden, picked grapefruit from our tree, and went on a nature walk. Today is also my birthday and I will be spending it celebrating with friends and family with a heavy heart, as my thoughts are  with the victims in Orlando and their loved ones. My birthday wish is that we finally learn to listen to one another with love and treat each other with compassion, instead of hurting each other. Hug your loved ones and smile at a stranger today. Life is fleeting and we need all the love and joy we can create together.

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5 Fun Date Night Alternatives to Beat the Blahs & Reconnect with Your Spouse

“…I completely forgot about my daily responsibilities. I didn’t worry about the children at all. I rediscovered the fun version of myself again…”

Life is busy, and when you’re a parent it can be difficult to find time alone with your spouse to reconnect. It’s so easy to fall into the rut of a daily routine filled with work, school, packing lunches, laundry, doctor’s appointments, soccer practice, grocery shopping, ballet lessons, more laundry…well, you know what I’m talking about. Last week I was feeling a little down about all this monotonous drudgery, and confessed to my husband how much I missed the days when he and I were less fettered by obligations and able to enjoy each other’s company, like when we were dating. With two kids and very limited babysitting options, it is rare that we are able to have a date night.

Later that evening Tropical Storm Colin rolled onto the shores of Florida, bringing buckets of rain, downed trees, and flood waters to our town. The next morning my husband surprised me at breakfast by asking if I wanted to ride around and look at the storm fallout while the kids were in school. Continue reading “5 Fun Date Night Alternatives to Beat the Blahs & Reconnect with Your Spouse”

Food Phases: How to Deal When Your Teen Goes “Raw”

“Crap, now I have to figure out how to get protein in my preschooler AND my frickin’ teenager!”

Last month I was enjoying a rare date night out with my hubby. In the middle of dinner I received this text message from my teenager:

text #1

She’d apparently watched a documentary called Fed Up about the food industry and informed me via text that she will no longer be eating any processed foods. No more meat, dairy, eggs, bread, cooked foods, or typical teen snack foods (i.e. candy and chips) for her. Being a professional mom, I played it cool, like it was no big deal. I kept a poker face when my husband inquired if she was OK, and I didn’t let on that her text was anything out of the ordinary. Unbeknownst to the outside world, Continue reading “Food Phases: How to Deal When Your Teen Goes “Raw””

Why the Woman Crossed the Road

“…it was just expected that if you were female, men would holler at you.”

The news this week has been filled with headlines about Brock Turner and rape culture.  As a woman and a mother of two girls, it has been a stark reminder of what it is like to live in this world dominated by violence, sexism, and “good ‘ol boy” attitudes.  Growing up in the South, I’ve been groomed to accept that I should always take a man with me when negotiating car sales, arranging house repairs, or hiring lawn maintenance crews.  I automatically park in well-lit parking spaces as close to the store as possible if  grocery shopping at night and I lock my doors as soon as I get in my vehicle to leave.    I’m not surprised when my husband calls to check on us when the girls and I walk home from the park at dusk.   As a teenager and young adult, I was never surprised to hear the catcalls of men driving by while I was jogging near the road – it was just expected that if you were female, men would holler at you.   Continue reading “Why the Woman Crossed the Road”