Wednesday, September 15, 2010

Now that's what I call a workout!

Face the color of beets, clothes sticking to skin, and legs can barely carry my weight. Damn, that feels good!

Now for some Jimmy Johnson and Survivor...

Tuesday, September 14, 2010

Walking a dog in the hood

Boy on bike: "Hey lady! Don't bring your dogs this way!"

Me: "Why?"

Boy: "There's a giant black dog back there and it's not tied up!"

Me: "Dammit. Black Ugly is loose again..."

Boy: "What?"

Me: "Nothing. Thanks for the warning!"

We went the other direction and walked by the ferocious, chain-link-fence-jumping, man-eating pit bull instead.

Weekly Progess Report: Week 1

(This was written and should have been posted last Friday. I must have been working out so hard that I completely forgot! Yeah, that's it...)

Current Weight: 195 lbs (-5)

Average workout duration: 60 min.

Average daily consumption: 2100 calories

Feeling: Tired, but surprisingly good considering I have to wake up by 5:00 AM to maintain some semblance of a workout routine. What's that old saying? You have to expend energy to create energy? I think that's what I've done here. There were days this week when Jon turned to me and asked, "How are you still going?" It may shock him, but it makes me proud. I haven't had extra energy for a long time, and it feels so good! Actually, I'm kind of convinced just learning I was pregnant with Owen sucked all the energy right out of me for well over a year.

That being said, I feel good now, but I hope to feel even better in the coming weeks. I have a long road ahead of me and I hope to tighten my belt (no pun intended, har har) and see even faster progress soon.

Thursday, September 9, 2010

More fun with cousins

Isaiah? Isaiah? Isaiah? Isaiah? Isaiah?


Can I eat these?

Copy cat!

Big foot!

Is that the end, mama? Oh, okay, I'll look cute and cuddly.

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

No Regrets

My sister in law says there is nothing she would do differently in the days leading up to my brother's death and I think that's amazing. I can't imagine the pain and heartache of losing a husband, a best friend, and the father of my children, and it's comforting to know that she has no regrets. I guess that's the least God could offer her.

I do, however, have regrets, 2 actually:

1) I would have hugged him more, and told him I loved him at least one more time had I known what was coming.

2) I would have taken a picture of him with Owen.

I don't dare compare my grief to that of his family, but I'd be lying if I said it didn't break my heart to know that Owen will never know his Uncle Rick, and the least I could have done was snap a photo to show Owen one day, to assure him that his uncle did know and love him.

Rick did hold Owen, multiple times actually, and he interacted with him even more. He held him for the first time on Easter Sunday. Owen was only 6 weeks old and unlike a lot of people with such small babies, Rick took Owen from my arms with precision and confidence. He didn't have the fear of handling something so fragile which I saw all too often. And once the tiny Owen was securely in his arms, Rick began cooing at him, and said, "So this is my new nephew! Hi there little guy!"

Another time that comes to mind when I think of Rick and Owen was a day at my parent's apartment. It was Memorial Day and Owen was laid back in his bouncer doing some people watching (and there are plenty of people to watch in our family!) when Rick walked by, spotted him and said, "Hey Owen! You're just a happy little guy, aren't you?" then he turned to me and said, "You're lucky, my kids would never sit quietly like that!" It was one of those moments that reminded me just how lucky I was to have a baby as relaxed as Owen, something I didn't let myself see all too often in those early months.

No matter how much I regret not having captured those moments in a photograph, I can't change it. I did, however, take advantage of a moment this weekend to get the next best thing:

Owen smirking with his cousin Vanessa, Rick's daughter, showing just how happy a little guy he is.

Owen and his cousin Zachary, Rick's son, stealing a glance at Great Grandma Greene with a giant Lite Brite cube between them.

What I have to remember is that while Owen will never know his Uncle Rick, he will know him through the memories I have to share, and the time he has with his cousins, because Vanessa and Zachary are proof of just how cool a person Rick was, and how he was one half of a really fantastic parental unit.

Tuesday, September 7, 2010


Right this moment I'm enjoying my last day of vacation for the year 2010 while sitting at my dining room table, looking out at my quaint little cul de sac, and eating lunch of tuna salad on whole wheat pita and a fruit bowl on the side. Oh, and I'm the only person home! Jon went off to work this morning and dropped Owen off at the babysitters on his way, and I'm taking a day for myself for the first time since early February. It's been so long since I've had an abundance of time to myself that I'm not even sure how to take advantage of it. So far I've slept in, worked out, showered, done a bit of laundry, and wiped down the kitchen. And in the middle of each task I caught myself stopping and listening quietly for the baby as if for just a second I forgot he wasn't here. I sighed loudly and smiled each time I remembered I had the house to myself.

A few people warned me that this day would be hard on me, but so far it really hasn't been. Do I miss Owen? Sure, I love having him around. Do I miss him so much that I can't enjoy time to myself? Definitely not. I don't know what that says about me as a mother--whether I'm horrible or normal--but even though I love my little boy from the top of his head to the tips of his toes, the constant attention required to take care of, or the worry of whether or not I'll have enough time to finish a small task before he wakes up, can be down right exhausting. I was once told to be extra careful to not lose my sense of self once I became a mother, but I'm not sure how anyone could accomplish that. The role of mother is much too consuming, and far too important to remain as your very own entity. And especially if you're breastfeeding, not even your body is your own. I don't know, maybe I'm doing it wrong. My experience so far has been Owen calling the shots, Owen playing the boss, and even 10 minute breaks are provided sparingly. Luckily, he's a very cute boss.

Anyway, I'm enjoying my time away from all of the bosses in my life right now.

Still on the agenda for the day: a little shopping, a little writing, a walk with the dogs, preparing a turkey loaf for dinner, and hopefully a few Trading Spaces re-runs. If I've learned only one thing from motherhood thus far, it's this: forget schedules, plans, and to do lists, because none of it can be guaranteed. The best way to truly enjoy every moment is to wing it and the rest will simply fall into place.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Eating Excuses

I had come within 40 pounds of my goal weight before finding out I was pregnant with Owen. I realize 40 pounds still sounds like a long way to go but when you start out with 120 to lose, you can almost taste victory with only 40 left. You start letting yourself belief that soon you'll be able to shop in ANY clothing store, that soon you'll be able to put on your swimsuit and still feel confident, that it was only a matter of days before you'll feel truly comfortable in your own skin for the first time in your life. Well, that's how I felt at least. 70 pounds lost in one year and I was in the best shape of my life.

Most of you have known me long enough, or have been reading this blog long enough, to remember what I was like in those first 3 or 4 months of my pregnancy: scared to death. I was so completely convinced I was going to lose my baby, so convinced the second I became comfortable and let myself enjoy the idea of finally having a baby it would die in my womb and I'd be left with an incurable broken heart. I never mentioned it here, but I even stopped exercising completely because I thought the safest thing for my baby would be to lay around on the couch all day. I had just been laid off by Reader's Digest which only enabled the situation. I didn't have to work, I didn't have anywhere to go, so I hauled up on the couch and watched the Discovery Health Channel and rubbed my belly all day. It didn't take long before I was justifying nightly binge eating by thinking I may never have the chance to experience pregnancy again, so why deny myself anything? And while it is true--we may never be so blessed again--I have found myself 30 pounds heavier and really confused by how I ever managed to lose so much weight before! I don't understand where the discipline came from, or the energy, or the overall motivation. I obviously had more time. I recorded every morsel of food that entered my mouth, every calorie I burned in exercise, and worked out every day for 60 minutes or more.

I don't have that kind of time now, but I can take some time to look after myself. I have to take some time to look after myself. I crave being comfortable in my skin again. I want to enjoy shopping for clothes again. Most of all, Owen deserves a confident Mama. His life can only benefit by me improving my quality of life.

So, it starts now, while I'm sitting solidly at an even 200 pounds. I've been bouncing around between 190 and 200 since having Owen. My goal will be small and just shoot for the 170 pounds I'd reached before letting myself go during pregnancy. I may never hit the 120 pound goal I had originally, but I don't care about that anymore. I've spent most of my life accusing the world of being fat phobic, but I think I've finally realized that it's not the world that's fat phobic, it's me. Expect a short update and weekly weigh-in in the months to come.

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Lucky for us, San Antonio gave him back peacefully

Psst...Hey mommy, wanna know a secret???

My daddy is home!! (...And he gave me a bath and dressed me like Pooh and I'm not so sure how I feel about that but I'm glad he's home!)

Wednesday, September 1, 2010

The home stretch

The last 5 days with Owen have been so much fun but I think we're both ready for Jon to come home. I know I am because I miss my husband. I assume Owen is because it must get boring seeing the same face day in and day out.

Jon's absence has been kind of weird this year. The dogs are only just now starting to show signs that they've realized he's missing and Owen doesn't seem to have skipped a beat. In fact, I told Jon during our daily phone conversation (Yes, only one phone call per day with a 5 minute time limit. I'm a little salty about it if you can't tell) if the baby becomes cranky upon his return I will not hesitate to send him away again. I was only half kidding.

Anyway, things went off without a hitch here, which tells me I did a good job in preparing. Better than I had suspected even. I think it was a combination of Owen being a little more independent with age, me being a bit more productive/efficient in the things that need done because if I didn't do them, who would, and the fact that I finally took the time to sit back, relax, and just enjoy my son. It's never been more obvious how easily a baby can pick up on nerves and stress. I've been stress free and he's been an absolute doll. It can't all be coincidence.

My daily routine went a little like this:

Wake up at 5:45, shower, dress, eat breakfast, wake up Owen, feed Owen breakfast, pack up car, drop Owen off at sitter's, and head into work.
Work till 5, pick up Owen, come home, wash bottles, play with Owen and dogs, fix Owen's dinner, fix my dinner, eat dinner together at table.
Cuddle up in bed and watch approximately 15 minutes of Dora, have tickle fest, then it's bath time.
Give Owen bath, get him ready for bed, give him last bottle while rocking him to sleep.
Pack Owen's food for the next day, pack my lunch, poor a bowl of Reese's Puffs cereal, pull out the laptop and write a blog while eating.
Check Facebook.
Go to bed and watch Nick at Nite until I fall asleep.

Perfect? Definitely not, but I never once felt frantic or overwhelmed. I never once felt like I was shorting Owen of attention. I never once felt like I was losing my sense of self.

It may have been Jon who was out having fun, eating 60 inch pizza's somewhere in San Antonio with his buddies (jealous? me? no.....) but it really has felt like a retreat here, too. Even though it has been just as busy as ever, it felt a little less chaotic. I needed that in order to find my role as "mother" in this world of mine.