Hey 30, I see you, let’s do this!

The time is now 12:09am and that means that I am officially 30 and some change. I have to tell you, I had not been looking forward to this birthday. I know how most of you will react to me saying this, but 30 sounded old to me. It seemed so far off for so long and now here I am!

But truth be told, I also wasn’t looking forward to a new decade because I couldn’t imagine how it could possibly live up to the last. I LOVED my 20’s. I spent a quarter of them living in Manhattan– transforming from a sheltered Grosse Pointe girl, to a fast-moving, I-can-handle-anything kind of woman. I made great friends and had an absolute blast. My 20’s brought me love; the kind of love I dreamt of all my life. They brought me a little family, with 4 sweet furbarbies, and eventually a beautiful son. How could things possibly get any better from here?

And then my birthday actually came and you guys, I was blown away. I’ve always had lots of well-wishes on this day, but today, on this birthday, that number had multiplied by 100. And I’m not going to sit here and say that the number of Facebook messages you receive equates to the relationships you have. But I know for a fact that I spoke to so many more people today because I have finally come to a point in my life where I am one hundred percent comfortable with putting who I am out there, completely unapologetically. Sure, some people may not like what I have to say or what I represent, but the fact that I’ve taken this step has brought the most positive, supportive people into my life and today was a big reminder of that.

Sitting here tonight, I am also more confident than ever in my purpose. I know that a lot of people struggle at this point with, what they call, the quarter life crisis, but not me. Not today. I am a mother and wife first. Spending this day doing ordinary things for and with them suddenly felt so special. I love my role in this family. But outside of that, I am called to help people change their lives. I was put here, with these characteristics, this knowledge, and the capability to help people improve themselves from the inside out. I don’t question what the future holds for me because I can see it quite clearly. I was given the opportunity to share my passion and pay my complete self transformation forward and I will do that as many times over as I possibly can. That makes this next chapter incredibly exciting!

Yes, my 30’s certainly have some big shoes to fill, but I am absolutely confident that they will. In fact, I might need to get some bigger shoes for these goals! Here’s to everything that was, but more importantly, everything that will be. Tonight, I stepped out of the shower and saw something amazing. I looked 30 right in the face and thought, “let’s do this!”

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Showing Myself Some Love

It’s hard to believe that the day of love is upon us again. Last year at this time, I had just found out that I was going to be a mom.  This year, this little munchkin is my husband and my sweet Valentine.  Does it get any better?  I mean, look at that silly face.  What’s not to love?

But this post is not about our newly acquired love.  It’s about rediscovering a once great love that I had for myself.  You see, before I got pregnant, I was in the best shape of my life.  I was active every single day and intentional with my eating. I was down to six percent body fat and felt like a rock star.  Then all of a sudden, pregnancy took over.  My body started holding onto fat like it was its job (it may have been,) the exhaustion had me on the couch whenever possible, and I made two new friends named Ben and Jerry. I remember being asked repeatedly by a family member how much weight I had gained as my pregnancy progressed.  I told them over and over that I didn’t know, but the truth was that I did.  I was steadily gaining weight and developing new stretch marks. At my last appointment before delivery, I was up a total of fifty pounds.  Yes, five zero.

Fast forward almost four months and I’ve got about fifteen left to lose. It doesn’t sound like much, but it feels like a ton. Up until this point, the weight loss could be attributed to breast-feeding and generally decent eating. For the most part, my days and nights have been consumed by baby. This was to be expected. But now, as I’ve become more comfortable with the demands and unpredictable schedule that being a mom requires, I am ready to recommit myself to well, myself.

And so, I’ve joined a group of women on Facebook in what we call an “accountability group.” Each of us has committed to spending the next twenty-one days following a fitness program, eating healthy, and encouraging each other’s journey. It has only been one day, but I can already tell that success lies ahead.

Please don’t misunderstand. This isn’t about the percent body fat or the six pack abs. This is about the way I feel mentally and emotionally when I feel good physically. This is about not having to rotate the same three outfits because they’re all I feel confident in. I want to take my son to the lake this summer and not waste a single moment wondering what my thighs look like in my bathing suit. But most of all, this is about showing myself the same amount of love that I show everyone else in my life. I deserve that much.

In the coming weeks, I will be sharing updates on my journey with you. I hope to connect with other people who have gone through this before or are in the midst of it now.

Until next time… Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Recipe of the Week: Banana Oat Muffins

There are two words we all hate to utter… “Pinterest Fail.” I’m sure you’ve been there. You found something online, followed the directions exactly and somehow ended up with a disappointing finished product. So now you have a clear picture of how I spent my Friday afternoon. I finally got around to making, what looked like, some really yummy muffins that I’d saved a few weeks back. While they were quite pretty when they came out of the oven, they were really heavy and rather bland.  

I see what they were going for with the recipe. It seems that they wanted to keep the recipe relatively healthy and without added sugar. The intention was good. The muffin was not. And so, I tried a couple more batches with some of my own tweaks. I increased the amount of banana and decreased the amount of oats. I soaked the oats for an extended period of time to soften them a bit. Their texture was off before. I also mixed the “topping” from the recipe into the entire muffin for flavor. I tried some dairy-free replacements too! Ultimately, I ended the evening with some solid Banana Oat Muffins that are still healthy, but far more enjoyable. If you have time, they go great with a quiet house and a cup of coffee. More realistically, they’re a great on-the-go snack for you and your family!


Prep Time: 10 mins

Cook Time: 40 mins

Serves 12

Ingredients

3 bananas

2 eggs

⅓ cup maple syrup

¼ teaspoon salt

2 teaspoons baking powder

2 teaspoons vanilla extract

1 tablespoon cinnamon

1 cup Greek yogurt (I tried substituting Silk’s almond yogurt for my lactose intolerant husband. It worked like a charm!)

1 1/2 cups oats 

1 cup whole milk (I also used Lactaid milk.)

Optional but recommended: Dried cranberries, blueberries, chocolate chips, or nuts

Directions

1. Preheat oven to 350˚

2. Combine oats and milk in bowl and set aside

3. In a medium bowl, mash bananas. Mix eggs, maple syrup, salt, baking powder, vanilla extract, cinnamon, and Greek yogurt

3. Stir oat/milk mixture in with other ingredients. Let stand for a five minutes. 

4. Fold optional ingredient of your choice to mixture.

5. Line muffin tins with muffin liners. Pour the mixture into each muffin cup about ¾ full.

6. Bake for 40 minutes.

7. Let cool for 5 minutes before eating. 

Let me know how you like them!


(Here is the original recipe I’d found.)

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