I’ve re-written this post at least 20 times in my head. Where to begin. How to put into words the feelings and emotions that are going through me. Every time I consider the love and devotion that my husband has shown this family I just feel overwhelmed. Biologically, our son is not his. Emotionally…well that’s another story.

If you remove the events prior to 2003, there’s no question that DS belongs to DH. They belong to each other.

And it started a long time ago. The above photo is from early 2003. Little Man is only about 2 and a half.

That’s a happy looking man right there.

This one is from just a few months after the wedding.  Little Man asked for hubs to be his “for real dad”.

And here… is hours after the court hearing on this day last year. The smiles on those faces (mine too) are priceless. Little Man’s dream came true, and I think that applies for all of us in this house.  This “For Real Dad” loves his son as much as any “for real dad” could. As far as I’m concerned, that loving blue-eyed man is the only father that little boy has ever had.

We are lucky and blessed to have been able to do a step-parent adoption with no contest. The unfortunate thing for so many other families like us is the cost of the process. We shouldn’t need to be rich to do what is best for our children. It is a very costly and time-consuming process. But for us it was worth every penny, and every year, month, week, day, and minute of waiting.

Happy Adoption Anniversary to my husband and our son.

She is most definitely no longer a puppy.  My beloved Weimaraner, Kona, is 3 years old today!  Yes, we celebrate our dogs’ birthdays.  No, I don’t care if you think I’m weird.  Our dogs are a huge part of our lives.  I wouldn’t have my super cool job if it weren’t for Kona.

This gallery is  a short journey through Kona’s life with us.  My husband is the one who wanted a large dog, I never did.  I wouldn’t trade her for anything now.  She taught me what it meant to be a dog lover, she helped rehabilitate a dog that we fostered for several months, she’s made us laugh and comforted us when we’re sad.  She’s very protective, obedient, smart, affectionate, and beautiful.  I never knew I could love a dog as much as I love Kona.  She’s extra special and since she’s not a person, but a dog, I can play favorites.  Kona is most definitely my favorite dog and very well may always be my favorite dog (sorry, Kava).

I wish I could speak her language sometimes, I want her to know what I think of her.  She’s not perfect, but she’s even more than I hoped she would be.

Happy Birthday to my gray girl.

When I talk about balance, I’m not exactly referring to the physical kind.  Maybe you wonder where I’ve been since August, maybe you didn’t notice I was gone.  I was finding life to be overwhelming and something had to give.  It’s unfortunate that I had to take a break from anything, but twitter, Mamavation, and my blog were the things I chose to move to the back burner.

I was not completely sedentary during my time off, don’t get me wrong.  My tendinitis in my right forearm and then the subsequent blowing out of a disc in my low back had me down and out.  Wah, wah.  Life is hard sometimes.  Things happen beyond our control.  My chiropractor did well for my back, and eventually we gave up on physical therapy for the arm.  A little over a month ago they gave me a cortisone shot which has been a blessing.  There is now very little to no pain at all in my arm!  Woo hoo!!

Now while my back and arm were causing me problems, the house became a serious issue.  Bending, stooping, pushing the vacuum, washing heavy dishes (like my big skillet or crock-pot) are simple tasks we take for granted on a day-to-day basis, believe me. The bottom of the washing machine, the bottom rack of the dishwasher, and picking things up off the floor were nearly impossible or crazy painful for my back.  I thought hard about my home and the kind of keeper of it I am. The answer: not great.  My house wasn’t dirty, but it wasn’t tidy, organized, or picked up.

Enter FlyLady.  What’s FlyLady?  Learning to FLY.  ”Finally Loving Yourself.”  It’s learning how to balance life a bit including maintaining the home.  This. Is. Great.  I am so glad that a friend of mine shared this website with me.  I was suffering from CHAOS (Can’t Have Anyone Over Syndrome) but my house has been mostly presentable and nice since a few weeks before Christmas.

Now I am trying to re-implement fitness into my daily schedule as I also return to my job.  That’s all I went to blog about today.  Clean home, planned meals, fitness, job, happy family.  I know these things come easy to other moms, but doing it all is something I struggle with.  Then the first thing to take the backseat is always ME when things get hectic.  This is where I fail!

Balance.  Accountability.  Routine. I can do this.

How do you balance life and still find time for yourself and fitness?

Goodbye 2010.  Hello 2011.  I’m not a supporter of New Years Resolutions, really.  I make a resolution when I see fit.

Speaking of fit, I know I’ve been gone a while but here I am.  The end of summer 2010 brought a tremendous amount of stress, some emotional eating, some “screw it” attitude.  Then October brought me a herniated disc.  Hello PAIN!!

So the stress is gone.  The back is healed.  I’m ready and rearing to go.  Isn’t that what “they” say?

My super awesome husband ordered in EA Sport Active 2 on the playstation3 for us.  My EA Sports Active id is angelasue79 and I’d love to connect with you!  The box arrived this evening and I wasted no time getting started.  I signed up for the 9 week challenge and completed workout 1 tonight.  Due to my back injury I am keeping it on the “easy” level here for a while and I am going to play it by ear as far as ramping up the workout goes.  The absolute last thing I want to do is re-injure my back.  So I am not going to pressure myself too much but I am going to do the recommended workouts on the recommended days and also supplement that with my YMCA workouts as well.

Oh so I’m back up to 188 pounds.  This is a bit of an UGH but it’s still an overall loss of 19 and I can’t see how that is disappointing at all.  I’m staying positive and getting back on track.

Just for the record, I didn’t do anything stupid to earn my herniated disc.  I was standing still and I sneezed.  Sneeze cautiously, my friends… sneeze cautiously.

How are you doing with your weight loss goals and WHAT are you doing to achieve your goals?  Remember to set short-term goals to keep yourself focused now.

XOXO

I didn’t get a chance to do a post last week, but I am making time for it today for sure.

Successes:

I am definitely getting back on track with the exercise. I may not be doing something every day, but pretty close. I got back into the strength training last week and that felt really fantastic. I’d say water is a semi-success. I am doing better again but not quite getting what I should every single day.

Struggles:

Well the water is that semi-struggle. Getting exercise on the weekends is definitely a struggle. Eating is still so-so. I’m making general improvements but I definitely need to do better. Our budget has been a problem with eating right.

I think I lost a pound or two, but I will go to the gym tomorrow and weigh in to know for sure. This is loss after gaining 5 pounds overall, so it’s hard to really call it a loss, but at least I am heading back in the right direction.

I’ve had some stress and drama. As of yesterday I can confidently say that some of the stress and drama has been eliminated from my life. It wasn’t an easy decision but it will be healthier for my entire family.

Congrats to Janice, Sista of the Week. She’s definitely very deserving! Way to go!! Thanks for all your support!

Okay so it’s a little past midweek. Things have not gone as planned this week! Not that I should be surprised by this. My Monday bike ride went on as planned and scheduled. Hooray. Then Tuesday while I was out shopping, the company who buries cable lines went ahead and cut ours while burying the neighbors. Yeah. Super. So then Wednesday I had to go to work early and come home early to sit around and wait for the man to come fix our internet and cable. Then while I was at my normal job on Wednesday, the high school called and ask me to sub today.

Monday bike ride, check.  Tuesday…. I walked a lot while shopping and did a bunch of laundry. Does that count for anything? Wednesday FAIL. Today? I am going to take the dogs for a walk I think when the boy leaves for school. There’s just no way I’m going to have time to go to the gym.

Life is always getting in the way. Seriously!

The good news is that I’m doing great with my water this week. Go water! Hope you’re all doing well too.

Good gravy. Where does the time go? The allergy yuck turned into some other form of yuck that I had last week. This crap is no fun. Then throw some serious carpal tunnel pain on top of it and had doctor’s appointments and back to school. I’m sorry I didn’t post last week!

So right now I FEEL GOOD. And fat. I think my birthday celebrations caught up with me late. What’s my plan?

  • Monday – Evening bike ride (it’s actually cool enough)
  • Tuesday – Gym
  • Wednesday – Evening walk or bike ride
  • Thursday – Gym
  • Friday – not sure yet.

And eating better. I need to eat better, drink more water and move, move, move.  I worked today since my son is back in school and we changed my work schedule. It wasn’t really changed to accommodate me going to the gym or anything like that, but it will be nice to have a more set schedule. I am so relieved that my son has gone back to school and I can put a little more focus back on my health. Hopefully the weather continues to cooperate so that I can be outside more. The corn is done pollinating so I can breathe again!! Praise the Lord! Why is it pollen but pollinating or pollinate? English is weird.

Back on track here… I don’t know what my weight is right now. I don’t know what my measurements are. I know they are not going the direction I want them to be going, but it is all on me. I am accountable and I must take the bull by the horns and FIX IT NOW. It is being fixed. I must get off the computer and go move, so this is the end of my Mamavation Post. Plus my hands hurt. Stupid carpal tunnel.

XOXO

Hey kids, thanks for coming back for another week.  I’m not going to talk about me much this week. My head is full of snot, I don’t feel awesome right now, and I’m not that worried about it.

I’d rather talk about other things that I love about Mamavation.  One of those things is the Sistahood.

mamavationsistahoodseal

These women are pretty much the only reason I joined twitter in the first place. I’m @angelasue79 in case you want to get in on the action. The Sistas are real women, moms, just like me who are trying to get themselves healthy in order to support their families. Sistas aren’t perfect. I’m sure as heck not. Sometimes I’m amazed that they still let me be a Sista, I’m so incredibly imperfect. But we always have each other’s backs. We encourage each other, lift each other up, offer advice and help when needed. We also cheer each other on when we’re on the right track.

I’m sure we’ll hear a lot of mention this week of @bodhi_bear as we talk about inspirational Sistas who have lifted us up and helped us in our times of need. But the thing that makes Kia a little extra special for me is that she really is my sister. Okay, technically she’s my sister-in-law but she’s also my weight loss rock. She got me started down this path, she introduced me to Mamavation, she taught me yoga, has helped me with my diet, been supportive, and never made me feel bad. I can’t tell you just one story about how she’s helped me. She even made my banner for my blog here. Kia has almost literally been everything for me throughout my weight loss journey. She’s the one Sista that rocks my socks off.

No stories to share, but other Sistas who have really stood out in the crowd for me: @trulytrayce, @tina529, @DaenelT, and @notdiyheather.  This is a list of Super Supportive ladies who have really gone above and beyond on more that one occasion. XOXO

Congratulations to @RachelSteffen for making Sista of the Week! Go girl!

Last but not least, this week’s blogging carnival is sponsored by @Gruvesolution!! HOORAY!!! I’ve been wanting a Gruve oh so super bad since I first heard about them. I have this problem with the computer and would love to have a little reminder clipped to me telling me it’s time to get up off my butt! It’d really make my day.

I think I have another date with the neti pot to knock out my snot monster. I’ll try and stay awake for the show tonight. Hearing some stories of awesome Sistas should be very inspiring and uplifting.

I know it’s been a few weeks since I’ve posted.  Shame will do that to a girl. In all honesty, I’ve been hiding.

Well today I’m here to tell you that I think I’m back on track. I’m not talking about a plan, or what I need to start doing. I just did it. I had some help from a local friend. I’ve worked out 4 times in the last week and I’m watching my food. I am tracking on SparkPeople again and using my lovely droid app to help me. It’s really easy to use and I always have my phone with me. #NoExcuses

We’re going to be on a tight budget over the next few weeks so it won’t be as easy for me to eat what I want and need to be eating. Portion control is going to be key. I hope to hit up a good friend for some deliciousness from her garden on Wednesday to help with what I need. They usually have a lot more than they can eat on their own.

I still find that I’m trying to do too much. I have a big social network on facebook, mamavation, sparkpeople and I want to do it all but it’s tough. I am going to continue to work to find balance between the three without spending my entire day on the computer. That most certainly doesn’t help my weight loss at all. Also the fall will be calmer for me as far as my schedule. Depending on my progress on my own, I may apply for the next campaign with Mamavation. The two things I want most are the treadmill and help from Dr. Renna with my eating. Follow that up with making more time for exercise as a requirement will turn into a habit. I just knew the summer would be a bad time for me.

So I did step on the scales at the gym this morning and I’m at 180.6 which in the overall scope of things isn’t too bad. I’m not at all frustrated with that number mostly because I accept responsibility for the fact that it hasn’t gone down. On the flip side, I also accept responsibility for the fact that it hasn’t gone UP all that much. And now that I’m back on track I know it will go back down. Down. Down. Way down.

Congrats to @lovelyritaann for being sista of the week!

Also, I have been trying to keep up (even though I haven’t commented) and Jess and Jenny are totally rocking this campaign! I’m so proud of you girls.

XOXO

Hey ladies!  I’m so very happy to report that I’m feeling better.  It’s a bummer, but I’m not 100% just yet though.  At least I felt good enough to clean today.  Earlier I was thinking of hitting the Y and getting some good exercise in.  Now that I’ve done a ton of dishes, laundry, and mopped the kitchen floor I’m not so keen on worrying about going to the Y.  I don’t want to push myself now that I’m finally on the mend.  I was sick for about 8 days which is a decent amount of time.

There’s not a lot of health stuff for me to talk about over the last week.  I did not exercise at all with an upper respiratory infection.  I did drink a lot of tea (water tastes gross to me when I’m sick).  Some days I hardly ate anything at all.  Other days I ate what was convenient because there was NO way I was cooking!  My biggest moment of pride was the boating weekend.  I went to the store, bought a cucumber, bag of carrots, a bunch of sugar snap peas, grapes, strawberries, blueberries, raspberries, kiwis, and bananas.  I literally only ate a handful of Doritos the whole weekend and otherwise ate pretty darn good.  I made homemade pulled chicken to put in foil packets and reheat on the grill.  We had whole grain bread and sandwich thins, deli turkey, almonds, and lots of tea (no alcohol) for me.  I feel really good about the way I ate on the boat this weekend.

So this week I am going to try to keep up on the freggies, keep up on my water, and get back to exercising on top of stay well rested and finish my antibiotics.  If I’m up for it, I may take my gorgeous Trek bike out for a spin this evening.

Wednesday night we are heading up to Lansing, MI to see U2 play at MSU and I’m super excited.  The weather should be wonderful.  The music and the show will be amazing.  I’ve wanted to see U2 since I was in 8th grade I think.  This was a Christmas present from my hubby.

I wish all of you ladies an amazing week! ♥