Wednesday, February 23, 2011


Hi guys!
Well, I have had a really crazy week so I have not been able to blog as much as I would like...
Anyway, I hope everyone has had a good week. Mine has been so great. The grandmother of the girls I keep is in town and is so awesome. So I have loved having her helping hand!
I am really excited for this weekend coming up. This weekend is Focus weekend at Westlake hills pres. Focus is similar to a disciple now weekend. It is an in town retreat for high school and middle school students. It is such a fun and amazing weekend. When I worked at whpc, I was kind of in charge of focus. It was really stressful...But, this year, I just get to help and not be in charge, which I am so excited for! I am leading the senior house and cant wait to spend time with those precious students. But, i am really nervous...Focus is basically junk food weekend. I will be in a house surrounded by junk food. So I am trying to figure out what my best approach are my options:
1. Throw my program out the window and eat whatever I want...(not really an option, but could happen...)
2. Eat nothing junky. Avoid avoid avoid. I will probably get irritable. But probably my best option.
3. Have some of what i want. But portion it. The worry here is that i will end up stuffing my face because i am not good at stopping.

All of these options set me up for failure. And I really don't know what to do. Any suggestions? Help!!!

Sunday, February 20, 2011

what a weekend!

At the symphony with Andrew and his mom, Lynn.
I got a new dress and wanted to show it off!
Hi friends!
I had such a fun weekend! On Friday morning I had NO plans for the weekend and by Friday afternoon, we had a full fun weekend planned! One of my best friends, Priscilla (yes, this is the one who drove into her gym) was in town this weekend so we went to dinner with Pris and Adam on Friday. It was so great to catch up on life. It was so great to talk to Pris about weight loss and the struggle of it. She is also on weight watchers, but just to lose a little. It was awesome talking because whether you want to lose 80 lbs or 15 lbs, its still hard and you still have to work for each success. It was a breath of fresh air to spend time with my dear friend!
On Saturday, we ended going to the Austin Symphony with Andrew's parents. I was really excited for it. I had never been before. We went to dinner before hand and I had grilled shrimp and broccoli- a very good choice for me that was so so good! We had amazing seats and just really loved each moment of the symphony. I really was just so amazed at Gods grace. I have no idea how many of the people in that music hall believed in Him-but the bottom line is, is each person there was washed with beautiful music. I have heard people talk often about "common grace". Common grace is what humanity experiences everyday regardless of their beliefs or faith- laughter, warmth from the sun, romance, creativity, sunsets, good food, restful sleep...all of these things are common to humanity and are Gods common grace to us. As the incredible music washed over me, I was just amazed at who our God is and the small gifts he allows each of us. As I explained this to Andrew, his response was, "I just kept thinking about cartoons." So I guess this is where that spiritual thought ends. Ha ha. But i just wanted to share it with you guys. Where do you experience common grace?
I had a really good weekend with food-which is a huge victory for me considering all the "celebrations" I was attending! I also made a new recipe that I will be sharing this week!
Happy Monday!

Friday, February 18, 2011


Praise God, it is friday! I am so excited to sleep in tomorrow! Well, I went to WW today and I was DOWN 3.6 lbs! Thank the Lord for a loss! I am so encouraged. I worked the program this week. Meaning I monitored everything that went in my mouth. I was not psycho. I still had lots of treats, but I just was accountable to them. I also am encouraged with running. I hate it, but it melts the pounds away more than any other exercise I can do. So I will keep up with it :).
I want to thank all of you for walking with me through this. I love the facebook messages, I love the texts, I love the emails. You really are helping me so so much!
I wanted to share a thought I had yesterday with you guys...I LOVE Biggest Loser. It is so fun to watch and I love seeing people succeed. But, I also can get discouraged by it. I wonder if it really is healthy to lose 20lbs a week? Its almost like porn for a dieter. Meaning, it is an unrealistic picture and something that really can never be outside of a production. I know that might sound weird, but I sometimes wonder if I'm doing more harm than good by watching these shows. I noticed on my DVR that I record THREE shows about weight loss. Andrew hates it. He thinks it's ridiculous. When is there going to be show about someone losing weight at 2 lbs a week and living a normal life? If I could live at the biggest Loser ranch, with no mexican food in sight and with Bob and Jillian training me 8 hours a day, I for sure would slim down. But I live a BLOCK AWAY FROM MAUDIES. Ha, it just isn't my reality. Anyway, what do you guys think? Does anyone else feel this way? Im interested :)

Thursday, February 17, 2011


Hi friends!
Happy thursday! Thursday is my favorite day of the week. I love it because you are on the down hill of the week and parks and rec comes on NBC. If you dont watch it, you should. It makes me laugh so so hard.
I titled this post OMG, because I out did myself last night. I love the evenings. One of my favorite things in the world to do is sit on my couch with a glass of wine and watch my evening shows. Well, I tend to over do it with wine. I'm not good at having just one glass and that leads to LOTS of calories i end up drinking. So, I have cut back big time and am not having any wine in the house during the week. It is a weekend only treat. But, I have this pattern I love, so I swapped my wine for decaf coffee. I make a pot of fresh decaf and sip it all night. No calories and it does the trick. Well, last night Andrew had his bible study and I decided to surprise him with a new dessert when he got home. I had really been craving a bready chocolaty muffin dessert. So I searched my archives of weight watchers and hungry girl recipes and found this new one. Last time I made these treats I used a can of pumpkin and a box of devils food cake mix. But last night I found on hungry girl that she likes the devils food cake mix with non fat greek yogurt best. So I did that. I mixed the cake mix, and a cup of water. Mix it thoroughly. I also added less than 1/4 cup of semi sweet mini chocolate chips. I poured them into muffin tins and baked them in a pre heated oven for 20ish minutes. Y'all, it was a spiritual moment. These chocolate chip brownie muffins were so amazing. They were crunchy on the outside and so stinkin moist on the inside. These suckers are 5 points...which is pretty hefty. BUT, if you are craving something decadent, this is a way to get it that is a major bargain. Especially with a cup of lovely yummy coffee. Whoa.
I got up this morning and went to the gym. I did week 4 day 1 of my running program. It was a 5 min warm up walk followed by four 8 minute runs with 1 minute walks between them. It was kinda rough. BUT, i did it and ran 3 miles. So that was awesome. I felt for the first time today why I hate running. I dont know how to get past this stage where I kinda hate it. I love how I feel after, but hate it while Im doing it. Anyway, just seeking strength. Headed to WW tomorrow. Excited to see how I do.
Lastly, I am in a bible study with some amazing girls. Yesterday I found out that 2 of the girls in my bible study were told yesterday that their father's had both had heart attacks. Crazy. I think both are stable, but please pray for Emily Rice and her family as well as Anna Marr and her family. For healing for their dad's.
Thanks friends!

Wednesday, February 16, 2011

eat like a child

So I told you all last week about my friend Morgan. She is one of my best friends and one way we love to spend time together is exercising. We met up last Saturday and had such a great work out. We did 45 minutes on the elliptical and then did a 20 minute circuit (I wrote about those last week.). After ward, she invited me to lunch with her family at Panera (which happens to be in the parking lot of our gym. obviously, i would pick a gym with a bread restaurant in the parking lot. Morgan has 2 daughters-Nautica is 5 and Felicity is 11. I sat right next to her 5 year old at lunch. While I was devouring my veggie sandwich and salad Nautica was completely uninterested in her bagel and cream cheese. She wanted to pet a dog near by. She wanted to chat. She wanted her hair in a pony tail...she was not at all consumed by her food. Our lunch ended with her saying, "mom, is this enough? Can i just eat half?" and Morgan saying, "We can take the other half home for later." I was sitting there totally amazed at this interaction. How do we become obsessed with food? Kids seem to see eating as a chore. I wish so badly I could be so excited and distracted by the things around that eating is not the central part of my day. I know it is a mental change. I am going to try to not let food be central. To let people and relationships become more important to me than food. I want to eat like a child.

Tuesday, February 15, 2011

I am J-hud....i hope.

J-Hud pre weight watchers

J-Hud post weight watchers

Did anyone else see Jennifer Hudson on Oprah last week? Holy cow. She looks incredible. Honestly, I thought she was Naomi Campbell. She has lost 80 lbs on weight watchers and just looks amazing. I was really inspired by her. I watched it while on the treadmill which was hilarious. I kept running so hard because I was so inspired. Anyway, as Jennifer was talking about her journey, she talked about how she had struggled with weight her whole life. She had tried to losing weight her whole life and just couldn't make it happen. She shared that she joined weight watchers but struggled to really commit to the program. After weeks on the program with little success, she had a week where she gained. She was ready to throw in the towel. But her leader just said, "give me a week. Just work the program for a week and see what happens." Jennifer did and lost. So she gave it another week and another and another...and 80 lbs later is my hero.
I was so inspired by her. Honestly, I have not been committed to my program. I have come up with EVERY excuse under the sun...."I never do this!", "It's just one meal." , "It's a celebration.", "I'm so tired", "I had a hard day."....I have not committed. So now, I have decided. Give it a week. Just follow the program, eat my points for a week. See what happens. No excuses, no cheating. Accountability and commitment. So this starts today.
I got up and went for a run, ate a really filling 3 point breakfast and am committed. A day at a time, a meal at a time, a week at a time. I am j-hud. I can do this.

Monday, February 14, 2011

Valentines day!

Hello friends!
Last night one of my best friends, Emily and her sister Sarah, hosted a "Galentines" Day party. It was so fun. It was just girls and was a great time for fellowship and food. Emily made a delicious and pretty healthy Mexican casserole and we laughed so hard and just enjoyed each others company. It was great and the pic above is from last night.
I LOVE valentines day and here is why....It is the birthday of two of my favorite friends of all time, Priscilla Petsch and Matt Copple. So I love it for that. But other wise I hate it. And here is why...
I just struggle with the false image that the media and the world give love. I am not the angry single person saying these things. I am happily married for 3 and a half years to an amazing man who I love and adore and will spend my valentines with. BUT, valentines day even sets us up for failure. It paints a picture of a love that cannot be. It paints a picture of a wildly romantic couple who can't get enough of each other, never fights, never has financial struggles, never deals with addiction, never slams the door in the other ones faces...this couple lives in rainbows and sparkles all the time. And this couple does not exist. I promise I am not writing this because Andrew and I are in a bad place. We are great. But we are not this couple I'm talking about. We get pissed at each other. We get selfish with our time and our things. We seek our own good before that of the other...and we do this because we are sinners. We are broken filthy selfish sinners. And when two sinners are bound together through the bond of marriage, a perfect couple does not emerge covered in roses and rainbows. A broken filthy couple emerges in desperate need of a savior. In desperate need of a rescuer to teach them how to love the other. If look at how that relationship is, it's hard and yucky. But real and redeemed by one who created LOVE. By one who laid down his own life so we might live. And that process was horrifying. It was awful. It was scary and off putting. But that is love. So I write all of this as a reminder to all of us, that the picture our "world" portrays as love is a lie. True love lies in the arms of a savior, who gave us garments of praise and in return took our spirit of heaviness. All glory and praise to Him who is our love.

Friday, February 11, 2011

beautiful day!

Happy Friday!
I have been so lucky. I have had 4 day work weeks for the past 4 weeks. Now 2 of those were due to being under the weather. But last week we had a snow day and this week my girls went with their mom to Chicago for the weekend. So I had today off. Love it.
I slept in and picked Andrew up from work and we headed to lunch. I feel like I always talk about Kerby lane, but it really is our favorite restaurant with lots of healthy choices. So we headed there. I had migas tacos-made with egg whites, no cheese and on wheat tortillas with a side of black beans. Probably not the BEST choice, but a way for me to satisfy a craving and not blow my program. Then I dropped him off back at work. I had planned on going to my gym, but today is BEAUTIFUL. It is 58 degrees, sunny and wonderful. So I went to the hike and bike trail. I am still doing my Ease into 10k program. Today I began week 3. Its a 5 minute warm up walk then a 5 minute run followed by a 1 minute walk. You repeat the 5 on 1 off pattern 5 times. So I ran a total of 25 minutes. Doesn't seem like a ton, but it is a good run for me. I felt great to be outside running and in the beautiful sunlight. The running program is an app on my IPhone. You can program music to play while you run. And U2's "Beautiful Day" was one of the first songs on my play list. It was so refreshing to run while listening to that amazing song. Its a beautiful day. Don't let it get away. Have a great weekend!

Thursday, February 10, 2011


Hi friends!
I haven't had much on my mind the past couple of days, so I haven't been blogging much. I don't want to have a blah blah blog. I want to write with real honesty. So if i don't have much to say, no reason to blog...
today I want to point you all to one of my favorite friends blogs. I've actually blogged about Kaimey before. But she just started a blog and is sharing one her struggles. Even though I have not walked through infertility like Kaimey, I can so identify with her. We all have our struggles and issues. All of us sometimes feel broken. Kaimey so beautifully and humbly shares her story. Here is the link to her story. Enjoy!

Tuesday, February 8, 2011

weigh day!

This is a pic of me and my picky eater. We were just engaged
when this was taken....

So I went to WW today. And....DOWN 2.6! Yay! Such an encouragement. Considering I enjoyed the super bowl party I went too, I was kind of worried about weighing. But I did take a ton of the food to the party we went too. Including pigs in blanket- made with turkey pigs and reduced fat blanket...So that helps! It's amazing how much exercise helps with a loss. Those few weeks I was barely exercising, I was having such a hard time losing. But with my running and such, I think losing will only be easier. I ran with my girls yesterday. Totally forgot how hard it is to run pushing a double stroller! You need your arms more than you realize! But I did it and it felt so good. We are planning to go again today since it's going to be pretty! I LOVE the small touches of spring we get. So so lovely.

I like to cook on Sunday the food we are going to eat for dinner all week. It makes it so much easier when you can walk into the house at 5:45 and heat up dinner. Well, it is sometimes tough to make things that are healthy and good and that both Andrew and I enjoy. You see, Andrew eats like a child. I'm serious. When we asked him what food he would like to have at our wedding reception he said, "Chips and queso and chicken strips". So cooking has been difficult. But, I have found some easy, healthy and delicious recipes. One of which I am going to share with you-
Mexican chicken
-4 chicken breasts boiled until cooked through (about 15 minutes)
-after cooling cut up chicken breasts into small bites.
-In a large bowl mix together chicken bites, a large can of black beans, a can of green chilies, and 1 cup of non fat Greek yogurt, cumin to taste and cayenne pepper to taste. (the original recipe calls for fat free sour cream. I don't love how it cooks up, so I use Greek yogurt. So much better).
After mixing set aside.
-Pre heat over to 350 and spray a large Pyrex.
-take 6 corn tortillas and line the bottom of the baking dish
-Pour chicken mixture over tortillas
-top with 1 cup of reduced fat shredded cheese
-bake for 30 minutes
serve with salsa

killer. to die for. so good. Its 8 servings and each serving is 7 points. Its filling. I load it up with jalapenos. I like super spicy!

Do you have easy, healthy, kid (or husband) friendly recipes? If so, either e-mail them to me ( or leave them in the comment section and I will gladly try them!

Since it is still warm here, the girls and I are going to the trail for a run today! Hey-o!

Monday, February 7, 2011

Long time, no blog!

Morgan-who is going to kill me for putting this up. But isnt she just so cute?

Jay Pat! These are old pics, but just so you can have a face to go with the name. Jay didnt feel too good when this pic was taken....

Hi friends!
I can't believe its been since THURSDAY since I've blogged. My laptop is ill, so we have been down to just one computer at our house-which means far less computer time for me. Apparently there are endless scores and leagues to check...Anyway, while Andrew is at work, I get the computer, so my blogging has commenced!

We had a GREAT weekend! It was extra special because Austin had a rare snow day on Firday! I'm not sure how much snow we actually got...My house looked like it was about a half inch. But it was beautiful and by noon the streets were totally clear which allowed Andrew and I to have a fun day together. It was such a treat. One thing I was able to do was go to the gym and have a great workout. When I worked at the church, two of my co-workers and best friends were my work out buddies. Jay was the middle school director at whpc and Morgan was the associate director of middle school. We would work out together all the time and were all 3 members of the same gym. We called ourselves the "3 Amigos". Well, since we left our jobs and all had different work schedules, we don't get to work out together as often. But, on Friday, we all happened to be at the gym at the same time! Jay is basically a trainer and so he worked us out so hard! We got on the bikes in the spinning room and did a warm up there, then jay had us do a 20 minute circuit. It basically is X amount of exercises in a minute. And you repeat that for 20 minutes. Since I have had a hurt back, he took it easy on me and I only had 4 reps of 4 different exercises. So for me, once the minute started, I did 4 push ups, 4 planks bringing your knees up to your elbows and alternating the legs, 4 squats, and 4 high knees on a step. After I finish, I had as long as I had remaining in my minute to rest, until the next minute started. When it was over I had done 80 push ups. Stop. That is nutty. It was so hard, but really fun to be doing this with Jay and Morgan next to me. Its kind of embarrassing because Jay is ridiculously fit and does ridiculous exercises and people look at him a lot. They must wonder what he is doing with me! Ha! I realized how much I love working out with a buddy and pray for more chances to work out with friends. I also have been doing my running training. Since my back feels so much better, I feel OK about doing that. I just started my week 2 training which is 5 minute warm up walk, and then a 4 minute run followed by a one minute walk, you repeat the 4 minute run and 1 minute walk 5 times and then end with a cool down of 5 minutes. Now, 4 minutes is not a long stretch to run. But, I did all 4 minute runs on a 4.8 speed on the treadmill. Some of you are laughing at how slow that might be. But for me, Its soooo fast. Ha. I even did my last run at a 5. I was so proud of that. I felt really strong after and did a 10 minute circuit like I did with Jay after. It was great. And, since I worked out so hard, I felt OK about having some queso at the super bowl party. But I did not go crazy. So I feel good about that. I didn't get to weight watchers yesterday. I chose to work out instead, but plan to go tomorrow afternoon. I will report then!
I made one of my favorite recipes for our dinner this week! I am going to share it tomorrow! Happy Monday!

Thursday, February 3, 2011

A new love!

Something i'm sure you've figured out is that I am not your clean eating-organic-no chemical lady. I love a good chemical. I love soda. I love caffeine. I love processed anything. I feel lost and judged at whole foods. Once I asked for splenda...not a good idea. It was as if I had asked for crack. Ha. With all of that said, I have fallen in love with something that IS clean and organic and so so yummy. Amy's meals. Amy's brand is an organic brand that is dedicated to makeing healthy, hearty and DELICIOUS foods. I have been loving these meals for a while, but they are ususally pretty high in points. Like 9 or 10. Which is high for lunch...BUT, they just came out with these new light and lean meals. The one above is amazing. All of the light and lean meals have been 6 points and have been amazing. I have also had the bean and cheese enchilada meal as well as the spinach lasagna. So good. One negitive is, at Randalls (which is always more expensive) ,they were $5.99 EACH! Ahhh! So hopefully they will come down in price soon! It is foods like this that make eating clean easier.
I had an amazing run yesterday and am feeling so happy to be back into running. I am still planning on doing the Capitol 10k. I am so excited for this race and hope that it starts me with a love affair with running. It is so amazing to meet a goal that seems so crazy to try to meet! But I am excited! I feel like I am back on track and am excited for my weigh in on sunday. Hopefully I wont have the melt down I had last week :). Love you all!

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

sweet girls.

Isabel rocking her sun glasses

Caitlin all bundled up and ready for the cold!

Isabel and Caitlin with their first pig tails! So so cute!

I have not written much about the girls I watch, so I decided to dedicate part of today's post to them. Caitlin and Isabel are the 17 month old girls I have kept since September. They are identical twins and are hilarious. I never would have imagined I would be a nanny, but it has been such a great experience. I am amazed at child development and am so thankful for the amazing experience I have gained that I know will be so valuable when we have our own little Bells!
I love this job because it is SO life giving. I feel like it is so important to do something that brings life. For me, when I walk in everyday and their little faces greet me and say "hi!" I am overjoyed. Don't get me wrong, this is no glamour job. I have seen some nasty things and have stopped myself multiple times to think, "Is this really my job?"-but I love what I do and love these little ladies.
I hosted a Bible study at my house last night. I provided the Cinnamon apple muffins, but no one ate them. They had all gone to eat before hand, so they were full. Andrew was glad to have them all left over and we both had our own "apple pie and ice cream" after :). Our Bible study has been doing a study over the book of Philippians. It is a Matt Chandler video series. Matt Chandler is lead pastor at The Village Church in Dallas. He is probably my favorite speaker/preacher ever. I listen to his sermons via podcast every week. Last night was the last video of the series and it was SO good. He was going over the last verses in Philippians 4.
Philippians 4:11 is really what stuck out to me- " I have learned to be content whatever the circumstances." Matt went on to talk about contentedness. He talked about how we have the world at our fingertips today-we can talk to anyone anywhere at anytime. We can see anything anywhere at anytime. We can experience, learn, live anything. Yet so many of us are depressed, bored, and feel completely alone and with out purpose. He went on to say that our circumstances don't necessarily dictate our contentedness. It made me think about hearing so many married couples talk about some of their favorite memories of their marriage were the first years when they were poor and living in a small house. I think this goes to show that our contentedness happens with simplicity. For me, I believe simplicity is a great way to strive to live my life. Just a thought.
I got up this morning and went to the gym. It was pretty chilly outside, so I enjoyed the sweat in the warm gym! I have some errands to run after work, so I am probably going to skip zumba this week, but I am going to try next week. I have diligently been stretching and heating my back and it feels so much better. But I have really enjoyed my stretching (I'm talking 30 minutes of it every evening after a hot bath!). Hopefully this will keep me injury free!
Love you guys! Thanks again for your encouragement!

Tuesday, February 1, 2011

yummy apple muffins!

Well, last night I tried out a new WW recipe. Two of Andrew's best friends came over to watch the Longhorns vs Aggie basketball game and while they were there I felt it was the perfect time to try out a new recipe. I saw on the WW website a recipe for glazed ginger pear muffins. Well, I took that recipe and made glazed Cinnamon apple muffins :). These sweet treats are only 4 WW points plus and are amazing warmed up with a scoop of vanilla ice cream. Apple pie a la mode - weight watchers style. As you can see the in the above pictures, Adam and John thought they smelled great, then they tasted them and then they gave their approval :). It passed the boy test. I am having girls over tonight and will be serving these treats with coffee for our dessert. Pics to come tomorrow.

I want to thank all of you for your awesome comments yesterday. I feel so much better knowing I have so much support. I also feel so much better since I can work out! I felt great on my run yesterday. And I planned on getting up and shredding with Jillian-but my back is still a little sore. Since I don't want to re- injure, I still got up this morning, I just stretched and did yoga and abs. I know its good that I at least did something. I am pondering going to zumba tomorrow night. I've never been before -but i know I am pretty good at shaking my tail feathers. Ha. I'll let you know. I hope everyone stays warm. I'm in my uggs and burberry scarf today. Kinda looking amazing if I do say so myself.

I'll post the recipe for the muffins later this week! Promise!