Wednesday, September 29, 2010

Something Healthy

So, I've never been a fan of organized fitness or gyms....partially because up until only recently the idea of exercise offended me, and I hate to sweat.

However, recently I'v really come to like getting out and exercising.  It started out as just walking with the kids in the double jogger, which conveniently is a workout all in itself on flat land when you have about 90 pounds between the stroller weight and 2 large kids!!

Being that I've started enjoying getting my heart rate up and being outside, I've started looking for more ways to exercise but not necessarily make the kids stay buckled in a stroller for an hour.  I got an elliptical machine for the garage (Thank you Craig's List!!) and I would try and exercise while the kids were sleeping, but even that was tough because if any of them were awake I felt bad being in the garage even though the door was open and they were playing.

Well, about 6 weeks ago I finally got serious about losing some weight and started watching what I ate and really exercising...and since then I have lost over 10 pounds!! Now, for those of you reading this thinking "big deal, 10 pounds" let me share that I am no 120 pound stick of a woman.  Let's just say that I was made to stand the test of time and leave it at that.  All my life I've been heavy...when I graduated High School I weighed almost 250 pounds...and I'm barely 5' 4".  In my early 20s I got really sick and lost 100 pounds within about 8-9 months.  We cured the problem and I was healthy again, and it was amazing to be thin.  I had never been able to walk into a store in the mall and buy clothes...and now I could wear anything I wanted!!

Fast forward a few more years...since I had never bothered to watch my weight, when I lost it the inevitable started creeping back.  By the time I got married about 3 years later I had gained 30 pounds...then by our first wedding anniversary I gave birth...then about 2-1/2 years later I did it again.  Now here I sit...not as heavy as I was in High School, but about 60 pounds heavier than I was when I got married.  Kinda sad, but it's been a wake up call.  And now that I've figured out that I can in fact lose weight if I try and not have to eat crappy diet food or exercise 2 hours a day, I feel great!! I feel like I have finally realized how to lose weight, and once I lose all that weight (my goal is to get back to my wedding weight) I am confident that I can keep it off.

The beauty of what I've done is that I'm not dieting...I didn't change what I eat - just how much and how often.  And that alone had me losing at least a pound a week by just trying to do other stuff instead of snacking.  I have also recently discovered a wonderful exercise program called Zumba.  A friend of mine just opened up her own studio and Zumba is one of the classes she is teaching.  Normally I would stay away from something like that, but since I knew her and the price wasn't outrageous like most gyms or studios, I decided to go for it...and I love it!!

I can go and not feel like everyone is judging me because I'm the biggest booty in the room, and it helps that for some reason I've always been good at picking up choreography, so I can keep up and dance along without feeling like I'm making a spectacle of myself.  I love that it's an all female group, so I can shake it and dance around and get into it without worrying about what I look like.  The best part though is that there is on-site childcare by other women we all know from church...for I can bring my kids with me and they can have fun too by playing with other kids while I exercise.  It's a win for everyone!! I don't have to feel guilty anymore about making them play on their own, or be strapped into a stroller.  They can run free and play, and I can check in on them and see them the entire time.

I have to say that starting to lose weight has really changed my attitude, and even just those first 10 pounds have made me feel like I can do anything!! My clothes are starting to get baggy....heck, I've even started wearing a size smaller in my jeans!! It will take me probably 9 months to a year to lose the 60 pounds I'm aiming for - but this time I'm losing it the healthy way...which means that it will stay off.  And the most important thing is that I've discovered a healthier way of life that didn't have to include tofu and light cream cheese.

I know, this post was more for my benefit that anyone else's, but I just want you to know that anything is possible...if all of me can find a way to lose weight with kids and a full time job, you can too.  Just don't be afraid to try something you normally wouldn't think'd be surprised what options are available when you don't judge things right off the bat.

If you're local, check out the website for the studio I go to - 4Everybody Fitness
The owner, Sabrina, is awesome!! She makes you feel like you belong there, and really makes exercising enjoyable!

Friday, September 17, 2010

Bernat Crochet Along Mystery Afghan

For those of you out there who crochet, I would like to encourage you to check out the Bernat blog (link below) for their Crochet Along which begins September 22.

Each week they will have a new pattern for a square of the afghan for you to sew...and no one will know what it looks like until they're done and put it together!

I am excited to give it a try, especially since I have a TON of JoAnn's coupons for this coming week that I can take in there and get lots of cheap yarn!! 

There is also a contest for those who finish the afghan and send in their pictures (you don't have to use Bernat yarn).  I am probably going to use a different yarn simply because of the price, but the Bernat Soft Chunky they are using is super great, easy to work with and they have LOTS of color choices if you don't want to use the colors they are using.

For any interested, here are the amounts you will need and the colors they are using...

Yarn A - Natural (Cream) - 21 oz.
Yarn B - Forest (Dk. Green) - 7 oz.
Yarn C - Topaz (Brown) - 7 oz.
Yarn D - Lavender (Purple) - 7 oz.
Yarn E - Fern (Lt. Green) - 24.5 oz.

Now, if you are going to go out on your own and change the colors....keep in mind the color scheme they have and how much they are using (Yarn A and E are used three times as much as the other colors).  And note that they have a lighter and darker green (the light being the most used) so try to pick at least one color that has a light and dark.

I would love to hear if any of you are going to give this a whirl!! I figure it might be fun, and it spans over 12 weeks, so there is plenty of time.  And, if you don't care about the contest, you can just print out the patterns each week and finish it in your own time!

Happy Crafting!!

Make sure to take a look at the previous post for information on my new adventures in quilting!!

My first REAL quilt!!!

Wednesday I decided to be daring and try something new....
I had seen the tutorial for a "Magic Baby Quilt" on a wonderful blog and fabric shop called Piece 'N Quilt

Here is the link for her tutorial -

I obviously did not use the same fabric they did.  I LOVED the pattern and after reading the tutorial and seeing how easy it was decided to have a go at it.
I headed to JoAnn's and attempted to pick 14 different fabrics to make this quilt with...which is no easy task when you have 2 young kids in tow!!

I have to admit it was fun picking fabrics and trying to make sure they all go together - and I think that I did a pretty good job considering every 15 seconds or so I could be heard repeating "Karyl, would you please give Freddie his car back that he just threw on the floor."

I decided I wanted a brown and pink theme....then I realized that I had to break it up, so I decided that blue and brown would go well with the pink and brown.  I also got extra fabric to make strips for the backing to use in between the white flannel I am going to put on it (yes, cotton on the front, flannel on the back...don't judge me!!)

I can't wait to work on the backing today and maybe, if I have enough batting, I will sew it together today.

When I get the back done I will post pictures of it....

Then I will attempt another first...binding!!!  I saw a wonderful how-to video on YouTube about binding that included corners and connecting it/finishing it off.  I will post the links to the video when I do the binding for those of you who might want to see them.

I will also post my "interpretation" of the instructions for this quilt later I said, it was SUPER easy and I LOVE the way it looks.  I am planning on *gasp* machine quilting this baby quilt on my little Singer machine.  I am trying to find a darning foot, but I think I will have to order it directly from Singer.  If I can't get the foot now or still need some practice machine quilting I will just use the "stitch in the ditch" technique with a walking foot.  Luckily, when my mom gave me her good old Singer ('s like 30+ years old) she had a walking foot that matches my machine, so I don't have to buy one!! I can't wait to get her machine fixed and start using it...nothing beats a sold metal sewing machine!!

Alrighty....back to work....those hospital reports don't type themselves!!

Monday, September 13, 2010

Movie Reviews

So, in all fairness this blog was started with the intent of proving there is in fact "Life After Diapers." 

As such, I figure that should include more than recipes.

I have a secret addiction to old's all my sister-in-laws' faults...TCM is one of my favorite channels.  I have seen some great movies on there, and I figured it would be great to share the really good ones with you so if you have TCM or NetFlix you will know which movies are worth watching!!

This one was really was about a rich heiress whose best friend and her new husband are staying at her mansion for their honeymoon and the best friend has been posing as the heiress for appearances and the like - and since they don't allow anyone to take pictures, no one knows it's not really her.

Well, the heiress ends up being dumped by her fiance (and yes, he knows who she is) and to help her along her way her friend and her "caretaker" (an older gentleman) decide to invite all the Army Pilots who are staying at the hotel close by for tea.  Well, she convinces her friend to pose as her, and she pretends to be her own secretary when she ends up liking one of the pilots. 

The rest of the movie is basically the two women trying to keep their secret because they want to know if he's really in love with the heiress, or her title.  And the poor best friend's new husband spends the whole movie rolling his eyes and dying to have some alone time with his new wife.

In the end, things work out and the poor Army Pilot doesn't even know who she is until it's "too late" and the very end is a cute wrap up.

Cross Country Romance

I don't have a DVD cover for this one, but this was a cute movie too.  It stars Gene Raymond and Wendy Barrie.  In short, it's a movie about a rich girl (Wendy Barrie) who, to sneak out of her own wedding, end up hiding in a doctor's trailer outside the building who has come to reluctantly deliver something to her mother because she was a high donor to some hospital he was affiliated with.

The doctor (Gene Raymond) doesn't discover the girl is in there until his next stop and she tries to tell him who she is but he doesn't believe her, so she makes up a name and tries to convince him to let her tag along for the ride to the West Coast.  At every stop he tries to get rid of her, but she somehow manages to talk herself back in.

There are lots of little bumps along the way, like that her mother reported her missing and she has been reported as kidnapped - so they run into some trouble when people recognize her at a diner.  She gets a hold of her mother and things are straightened out...but when this doctor eventually finds out who she is all he can do is try to run away...but she finds him and even when he gets on his ship to China he isn't safe.

It has a happy ending and some short laughs all the way through.

So, enjoy!! I will try to post reviews on as many old movies as I can.  I try to watch them when I exercise in the garage, and during the day when I'm doing domestic duties, like folding laundry, since they are appropriate for children to watch and the kids can watch them too!!

Thursday, September 2, 2010

Lemony Blueberry Goodness....with sugar on top....

I thought I had pictures, but I guess I was wrong!!

You can look at the pictures on the Get Off Your Butt and Bake Website....mine ended up looking exactly the same, maybe with a little thicker coating of icing!!

These were super easy and were moist and yummy!!!

Enjoy and feel free to post a comment if you make them and end up loving them too!!


A general winner all around...I think I am going to try them with chocolate chips next!!

I've been busy....

I've been busy...

I made this super awesome rag quilt for a friend of Greg's from work...this was my first time making a rag quilt and I'd never really seen it done or read any instructions so I just went with it and I have to say it turned out super cute...and it was SUPER easy!!

Last Saturday I attended a Chef Series class at the Le Cordon Bleu Culinary School in was on cake decorating. Seriously, these classes are the best deal for the money anywhere.  I learned more in that cake decorating class than I could have learned in all Wilton Classes combined! And I got a sweet apron to take home!!

I then went home and decided to put the skills to the test...this was my VERY FIRST attempt making a frosting rose (A Wilton rose)...I think they turned out AWESOME!!!

Now, let me preface this next picture by saying that I have had NO practice or instruction in writing on cakes, or on making and decorating sculpted cakes...AND I only had a few hours to put this together...AND I had to use boxed cake mix due to the time constraint (boxed cake mixes are super crumbly, which makes sculpting a cake even more challenging!!)  Since I was way too inexperienced to attempt anything life-like, I decided to go for cartoony and cute....I think I did a pretty good job!!

I actually much more prefer the direct from the cake pan cakes that you just have to level and frost.  I love decorating the more fancy cakes with piping and designs (shells, flowers, polka dots...), you get the picture!! But this was a fun challenge...and I am impressed that I was able to pull it together in such short notice.  I'm not 100% satisfied with it, but it will work for the situation...besides, all those FedEx guys and ladies are going to have it eaten so fast no one will have time to critique it!!

And, it gave me an excuse to by the 3-in-1 cake rectangular cake transporter I've been eyeing, it also has holders for 12 cupcakes and 24 mini cupcakes!! YAY!!!