Time To Remove My Clark Kent Glasses

You know what? Sometimes I wear my sports bra to work.

True story.

I do this for two reasons: 1.) Sometimes the girls get on my nerves and I need to push them out of the way a bit. 2.) I can go on a little impromptu athletic excursion during my work break…. with support.

It kind of makes me feel like Superman. At first glimpse I look like a nerdy teacher in professional gear but underneath lies the key to my super powers… a sports bra.

I even have the Clark Kent glasses.

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For the past two weeks it has been dead winter in these parts. As soon as I gathered the motivation and organization needed to go on these little outdoor excursions in between teaching classes this happened…

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And then this happened…

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(There’s hot chocolate somewhere underneath that mound of whipped cream.)

At first it was really fun! We watched movies and snuggled. And watched movies and snuggled. and watched movies and snuggled… “Okay, you can get off me now… Seriously, get off me!!!”

Cabin fever ran rampant and we started to resort to weird ways of entertaining ourselves while we waited for the cold weather to pass…

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Before long the fun faded and I got SAD (Seasonal Affective Disorder, if you must). I didn’t want to spend one more evening in my pajama pants. I needed to get out. I needed exercise! When I started working full time I let my gym membership expire.  Since I started working so much I wasn’t using it. When this happened I figured I could just go outside and run, but as you could see there was a two week span when that wasn’t going to happen.

So without a gym I decided to get a punch pass for our local rec center. Brent and I agreed I could go work out during the evenings that Bridget had swim team practice. I thought this was a great idea. Our rec center was huge I had never ventured upstairs but I was sure they would have all of the equipment I would need. After I bought my pass we all marched up stairs to see what I would have to work with.

It turned out to be a play pin with a handful of cardio equipment shoved in the corner. The feng shui was totally off. I felt claustrophobic just looking at it. As soon as we saw it I turned around and walked out.

I could feel the tears prick my eyes and I wanted to walk ahead of Brent so that he wouldn’t notice. I was acting like a baby and I knew it. But I was really looking forward to having this moment to myself where I could work out and feel good. There was no way I could accomplish this in that little stinky baby play pen. (Yes, I am fully aware that my reaction indicates that a play pen was exactly where I belonged… but that’s not the point.)

What was done was done. I had twelve passes to use up before I could come up with another option. The first Swim Team day arrived and Brent had already made plans for cooking dinner and had already cleaned the house. As soon as I walked in the door from work he asked me if I was going to the gym. I started to come up with an excuse as to why I couldn’t and I could see Brent’s eyes rolling into the back of his head before I could even finish my sentence and gave up.

I was being stupid. I went upstairs and changed into my gym clothes and decided to just give it a try.

When we arrived to the rec center Bridget made her way to the pool and I trudged up the stairs. I chose to work out on an elliptical machine because it was the only thing that wasn’t shoved into a corner. I grumbled to myself as I shoved my ear buds in my head. I started out shuffling along half-heartedly but then something happened. I forgot where I was, I forgot what I was doing and I just enjoyed my music and the feeling of my muscles coming back to life. My lungs burned at first because it had been a while since I had fully utilized them. But even the burning sensation started to fade as I was lost in myself.

In myself… the one place where I can find happiness.

It was then that an epiphany hit me. I don’t need a super fancy gym to obtain my goals, or anything that I could buy for that matter. The answer to my success is simply from within, something I’ve always known but I rarely acknowledge.

I don’t know if you’ve noticed but it’s that time of year…

The one where leeches come out of the wood work. They know that you are going to eat your weight in pumpkin pie and Christmas cookies so they choose this time of year to feed off of all of your insecurities. These are the companies that tell you that they have the one and only diet that will work for you. They have the “all natural supplement” that will suck all of the belly fat out of your abdomen. They’ve all got that one tool that will lead to your ultimate goals and success.

They have the solution for you!  “All for just three easy installments of  $39.95 and then we’ll rape you of the rest because without your full knowledge you have just signed up for a subscription that will automatically pull from your bank account.

I actually just fell for this not too long ago. I got sucked into a fake article about “the skinny pill” sweeping the nation. I knew it was a fake article but I was still curious. They were advertising free trials so I decided to sign up. I told myself that I was doing it simply for research purposes for my readers. Once it came in the mail I ignored it. My moment of weakness had passed and I wasn’t so curious anymore.

Unbeknownst to me the company decided to make an $89 withdrawl from my checking account.

Got all gangsta with customer service and they gave me my money back but I still felt violated… I had just been bamboozled!

Funnily enough, within the past two weeks something started happening to my blog. Instead of having hundreds of visitors to my site a day I was having thousands.

I couldn’t help but be skeptical. What the hell happened? Where are you people coming from? Don’t get me wrong glad your here but in case you didn’t notice from my lack of ad space (a conscious decision) I’m not here to sell you anything.

No greasy salesmen here! If anything were ever endorsed on this blog it is because I truly thought it was beneficial. Not because someone paid me to sell it for them. (No offense greasy salesmen.)

I did some digging and found out that some company had attached themselves to my blog without my permission. I found my website under a different web address. Check it out for yourself… http://naturalfitnessandwellness.com/top-posts/

Did you see it? It’s pretty creepy right?!

Then I simply plugged in naturalfitnessandwellness.com in my computer to see what the hell this was all about. Well guess what I found…

THE SAME ASSHOLES THAT TRIED TO RIP ME OFF!

They are selling Garcinia Cambogia AKA “the skinny pill” sweeping the nation. It’s a SCAM!!! They make this site look like it’s connected to the magazine Good Housekeeping, but if you look at the link that appears it doesn’t say naturalfitnessandwellness.com or goodhousekeeping.com it says goodhousekeep

(Not to mention the stupid name. Have you ever heard of artificial fitness? How is any fitness not natural? Weirdos.)

So if you found my webpage through their shenanigans let me first say. Welcome!

I’m sorry we met this way but listen well.

You can’t buy what you are looking for. The answer to your problems doesn’t come from a pill that you can buy on the internet. Nor does it come from any of the other crap that is being marketed to you.

What you need is a good come to Jesus talk with yourself and realize that you are fully capable of accomplishing anything you set your mind to. Be it your fitness goals, your career goals or your personal goals. The key to your success is belief.

Believe in yourself.

This type of belief isn’t a quick decision to be made but a journey you will travel for your whole life. When you travel down this road you may just find that you are amazed by what you are capable of along the way.

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These companies know the in’s and out’s of your psyche. They know your weakness. They know that it is easier for you to believe that the reason you aren’t living the life you want to live isn’t because of failure but because you didn’t have the required tools.

But if you look inwardly enough you’ll have no choice but to acknowledge that these are just a bunch of bullshit excuses. It’s humbling to admit that you’ve had everything you’ve needed all along. It was just a matter of utilizing it.

Now, time to remove the Clark Kent glasses…

To the company who is trying to use my content to take advantage of my readers.

GET THE FUCK OFF OF MY SITE!

We’re not buying it. I don’t want your traffic. I don’t write this blog to make money. I write this blog to connect with people… not trick them.

So until you stop utilizing me for your shady ways I will virtually kick your ass in every post I make until you unlink yourself to me… because until then every person you send to my website will know better than to spend their money on the bogus shit you are trying to sell.

Cleaning Up After Christmas and A New Giveaway!

I woke up early this morning to see my family load up and head back to Texas. After watching them take off down the street I turned around and walked back into my house where the holiday decorations no longer looked festive. It looked like a prom queen the morning after prom. What was once appropriately decorated now looked hung over and tacky.

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My house was definitely suffering from a holiday hangover. As my head pounded from the remnants of a sugar overload I felt it was only appropriate to take down all of the decorations and clean the house. A new season is upon us… the season for starting fresh.

It’s funny how different the ritual of taking down the decorations is compared to the ritual of putting them up. Everyone had mysteriously disappeared and I found myself alone to ponder upon the ornaments as I prepared them for their journey to the shed.

As I put away my tacky ornaments I couldn’t help but think of my grandmother and her tiny artificial tree. She never bothered to take the lights off of the tree from year to year. Not even when they stopped flickering and died. She simply wrapped more lights around it. As the years wore on the tree no longer resembled a tree but had become a massive ball of lights. I thought it was amazing.

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Everything about Christmas at my grandmother’s house was glittery and bright and downright gaudy. To this day when I buy decorations I opt for the most hideous, sparkly objects I can find because it makes me feel like that little kid pulling into the driveway of her grandparents house to see the majesty of lights lined with foil flowers piled in the bushes.

tackydecorationsI had never seen anything like it until I found this tacky tree topper at Target.

When I was a kid the thought of having to take all of the Christmas stuff down made me sad but now as an adult I look forward to taking the lights down. It symbolizes the changing of seasons… a fresh start.

There’s just something about my psyche that needs a clean slate every now and then. I don’t simply settle for one fresh start a year because I have a tendency to screw up… a lot. Instead of beating myself up about it I select certain times of the year that I can sort of have a “do over”. Even if things are going great and I don’t need it it’s always a good reminder that any day you wake up can be the beginning to something great.

My designated “do over” days are the first day of school, daylight Savings time (both of them), the first day of summer, and of course New Year’s Day. This year, the new year is a big deal because my life is going to change pretty drastically starting on January 6th. My time as a stay-at-home mom will be over as I complete my master’s degree in education. I will be working full time without the benefit of a pay check as I do student teaching. Penelope will be going to day care and I’m going to have to stretch my self discipline muscles in order to fit in budgeting, working out, cooking healthy meals, spending quality time with my family and writing this blog.

It’ll be a challenge but I’m looking  forward to it. I’m one of those people who thrives off of pressure (even though I kind of hate it).

This means the layout of my blog is going to change a bit. I’ll no longer do weigh-in’s on Friday but will instead weigh in on Sunday. During those posts I’ll share with you what meals I plan on making, how I plan on prepping ahead of time and the workouts that I will be doing during the week. In other words I will be a lot more organized.

I’m not waiting for the official New Year in order to get started, I’m starting today. Our diets have been horrible the past few weeks as we celebrated the holidays so we definitely need to clean up what we’re eating. While I go through this sugar detox I’ll probably have a few false starts. (I’ve learned to accept that screwing up is a part of this weight loss process.) I just kind of want to get the whole screwing up part out of the way before things get crazy. Let’s just consider this week a dress rehearsal.

That being said, I have another giveaway from ZHENA’S Extra Strength Slim Me Tea.

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I just want to lay it out there that I get offers all of the time to push products and 9 times out of 10 I decline because frankly I hate marketing. (This makes me a very ineffective blogger.) I write this blog to connect with people not to sell them stuff. However, when I stumble upon a product that I think will benefit you guys that’s when I agree to do product reviews and giveaways.

This tea isn’t a magic potion that will automatically make you skinny but it will give you a boost in the weight loss department to help aid your efforts. I like it because you don’t even have to brew it. You just pop the little tea pouch in your water bottle and it makes your water taste yummy. My favorite flavor is the peach vanilla.

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(I was going to take a fancy picture of my tea along with the tea pouch but then I started drinking it while I wrote this blog post.)

The Plan

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How It Works

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***To enter the giveaway leave a comment on this blog post that includes a first name with a last name initial. For an additional chance to win post a comment on the wall of my Facebook page. I will announce the winner on the next blog post and on my Facebook page. At that time I will ask you to email me at toohottieforthatbody@gmail.com with your address so that I can arrange to have it shipped to you***

Adventures in Christmas Tree Hunting

Hold off the search party! I am not drowning in a vat of hot chocolate or anything…

However, for future reference if I’ve ever gone more than four days between posts you should probably come looking for me because it more than likely means that I have gotten lost in the junk food section at the grocery store and can’t find my way out. Luckily, these past few days have been the exception.

I’ve been busy writing a 22 page paper for my final project (for my final class) before student teaching. YAY! It was a bit stressful trying to get this done during Thanksgiving but I managed to pull through with a 99% in the class.

Why, yes I’m bragging. I just need you to validate me and then we can move on… thanks. 

Even though I had a stressful project for school to complete we still managed to have a fun family filled weekend. My in-laws, however, left early on Saturday morning after seeing the note I left on my kitchen white board on Friday night.

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They figured they had until 10:30 to get the heck out of here before they had overstayed their welcome.

In reality, I doodled this while I was talking to my friend Andrea on the phone about the Christmas tree hunting adventure we were planning during the weekend. Brent and I were lacking a few of the needed supplies.

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Andrea and her husband Jon always get permits to cut down their own Christmas trees and this year they invited us to join them. I was super excited about it but also a bit nervous. Visions of National Lampoon’s Christmas Vacation kept dancing through my head.

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Surprisingly, nothing went awry and our first trip to chop down our own Christmas tree was everything we hoped it would be. The drive out to the national park was beautiful and the weather was absolutely perfect.  We’ve decided to make it a yearly tradition.

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While we were out there Andrea offered to take family pictures of us for our Christmas cards. (This is one of the perks of being BFF’s with a photographer.) Andrea owns Life Du Luxe Art, so if you are local she’s your gal!

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We used Andrea’s equipment to take family photos of Jon and Andrea as well and mid-shoot they were bombarded by carolers on horseback.

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It was actually pretty hilarious.

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The kids thought it was awesome because not only did they get to pet the horses but they were given candy canes to munch on as well.

We managed to get our Charlie Brown Christmas tree home in one piece. Penelope has already managed to tear down all of the ornaments off of the lower branches and half of the pine needles along with it.

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Every time she rips an ornament down she scrunches up her nose and sniffs as hard as she can. It does smell pretty amazing. In the meantime, our old fake tree has found a home at the fire station to keep those lonely firefighters company.

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Since the family has left town I’ve been trying to clean up my diet. I’ve been loading up on lots of fruits and veggies…

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I even raided the bulk bins at the grocery store in hopes of saving a little money.

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I plan on making my own hummus and I’ve already made some amazing homemade granola. I’ve been chugging down a lot of water and tea as well. Speaking of which…

***The winner of the Swami Mami Teatox is Marci! Please email me at toohottieforthatbody@gmail.com with your shipping information so that I can make arrangements to get it to you.***

P.S. Here are a few more recipes I’m tempted to try in order to make use of my bulk bin purchases…

Harira: Moroccan Chickpea with Chicken and Lentils

Kale, Lentil and Chicken Soup

I also plan on checking out a few of the bulk bin recipes from Naturally Ella as well.

The Weigh-in After Thanksgiving and a Teatox Giveaway

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Who the heck actually weighs themselves the morning after Thanksgiving?!

This girl, apparently.

To be honest, if I didn’t have a weight loss blog I probably wouldn’t have weighed myself because that just seems like a mean thing to do to yourself. But I did and I weighed in at 184.6.

To add insult to injury I also looked through the unflattering pictures that were taken of me yesterday. Let me tell you, it’s not easy coming from a huge Viking bloodline and marrying into a petite family. When I stand in the pictures it looks I could lean over and take a bite out of each of their heads.  I wouldn’t actually do that because that would be weird.

Since it’s technically the end of the month I should post my monthly pictures. However, I love myself just enough not to do that while I still had a food baby in my belly. Plus, I have a tiny house full of in-laws so it would be really awkward taking these photos with an audience. 

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We were so glad to have family in town for the holidays. It had been so long since we had Thanksgiving plans that actually took place on Thanksgiving. We all woke up yesterday and enjoyed hot coffee, cinnamon rolls and breakfast casserole while we watched the Thanksgiving parade.

Shortly after we hit the trails near my house to get some fresh air and work off the breakfast we had. We also wanted to do something that made us feel better about the meal we were going to have.

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We knew what was about to go down so we thought it best to burn some calories ahead of time…

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Brent felt like this wasn’t hard enough of a workout for him so he had to wear a weight vest during the walk. I kind of wanted to punch him in the face because the weight vest weighs about the same amount that I still have to lose. So, basically he was pretending to be me… The only difference is that my weight vest jiggles.

Once we got home I popped the turkey in the oven and the culinary show down began!

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While we cooked dinner Bridget made her obligatory head dresses and pilgrim hats. Only she wasn’t as excited about this little task as she used to be… I’m pretty sure this was her last year. (Give me a moment, I think I need to cry about that… Okay, I’m good.)

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We had so much fun dressing up according to our parts and playing with the photo booth on my computer while we waited for everything to bake…

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We laughed until we peed a little cried. Before we knew it, it was time to eat!

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The turkey was perfect! The whole meal was a success… maybe a little too successful.

Now that Thanksgiving is over I’ve got to get back into the swing of things before Christmas rolls around.

A few months ago Swami Mami Teas selected me to be on their list of top weight loss bloggers. I was flattered of course, so when they asked me if I would like to try one of their teatoxes I decided to give it a shot. I love tea and they use quality ingredients so I thought “Why not?”

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I was super excited when I got my package in the mail but since I knew I would need a little extra help after Thanksgiving I decided to wait to use it. Now, don’t get me wrong… when I say “teatox” I’m not talking about only drinking tea. (This girl’s gotta eat!) What I mean is that I’ll be jumping right in with eating clean substantial meals and just adding these two teas with it.

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You drink the “Get Lean” tea twice a day and you drink the “Get Clean” tea at night.

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To be honest the “Get Lean” tea isn’t my favorite but it’s not undrinkable. It tastes better with lemon and a drizzle of honey in it. However, I love the “Get Clean” tea. It’s so relaxing! I love snuggling up in my bed with a book and a nice warm mug of this stuff.

Every time I get offers from a company to review their product I always ask them if they would be willing to share with my readers as well. I just feel rude talking about the stuff I get and not sharing. I feel like you guys deserve something for reading my random musings.

That being said, one of my readers will be a lucky winner of a two week teatox kit of their own. Just leave a comment on the blog or go to my Facebook page and leave a comment on there.

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I think this will be a great motivator for not going over board on cookies while you wait for the next round of holidays to arrive. You won’t want to do anything to take away from the goodness you are putting into your body.

You can either take advantage of this break between the holidays to get back on to a healthy track or cry over how fat you look in the photo of you waiting to eat your Thanksgiving meal.

Maybe that’s just me…

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I didn’t realize how morbid it was to have Penelope dress up like a turkey until just now. It looks like we are all waiting to devour her… awkward.