Thursday, April 30, 2009

Show Us Where You Live Friday: Kitchen Edition

Today I thought I would share my kitchen. Everyone knows Kelly over at Kelly's Korner click here to visit her site and check out kitchens from all over blogland. Being involved with EM:ME the kitchen is a very big part of that so here it is......
and in my continuing effort to Keep it Real.
This is my kitchen after the tile began falling off last fall.
Don't worry, a little liquid nails and it was just like new. :)
These pics were taken in the fall.
Not specifically for this but I do love my small kitchen.
This is the overview of what it looks like.
The pic below was taken standing in the exact same spot.
Below is the table we eat our dinners as a family
as often as the schedule allows. Which is not often enough.

My pretty green metal canisters....I love them!
Usually I have an arrangement of seasonal flowers in the tea canister
I just went and snapped this one so I could share the top of my is my favorite part of the entire kitchen

I can't wait to go see all the different kitchens!!!
(I did so want to clean up the clutter in the left corner,
then decided, I have kids....let it be:) )

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

Extreme Makeover Me Edition

{ae filkins}

Welcome to a successful week of Extreme Makeover~Me Edition, Amber hosts this weekly support group. I enjoy reading about the journey we are all on to improve our lives in some way. Different people have different objectives and goals. Click on the link or button above to read the stories of my new friends!

My goal: to feel better.

To feel better I must lose weight.

And this week......success

Drum roll please....

I lost 3.5 lbs

(funny how important a .5 can be)

With that I have to say, I have tried to get back to basics this week.

  • Make a good meal choices

  • Eat more fruit

  • Drink less soda

  • Eat more veggies

  • Cut out snacks (this is my weakness)

  • Be more active

I think these things led me to success. I don't feel like I deprived myself. Also, my in-laws were here for 3 nights/4 days. This added to my stress level, I thought it would negate the activity level being up.

Can I just say Yay for me!!

Amber is encouraging us to share a recipe this week.

This is one of my favorite's from the book

Eat up Slim Down

Chicken Fiesta Mexicana
4 boneless skinless chicken breast halves

2 tablespoons ground cumin

2 tablespoons minced garlic or garlic powder

1/2 tsp salt

1/4 tsp ground black pepper

1 cup of salsa

3/4 cup (3 oz) shredded reduced fat sharp cheddar

3/4 cup (3oz) shredded reduced fat monterey jack

optional: 1 small avocado, pitted, peeled and sliced

Preheat oven to 350 degrees:

~Place chicken on a med. nonstick baking dish. Coat both sides with of chicken with nonstick spray. Sprinkle both sides evenly with cumin, garlic, salt and pepper. Top with salsa. Bake for 20 minutes
~Remove from the oven and sprinkle with the cheeses. Bake 10 minutes, or until cheese is melted and a thermometer registers 160 degrees in thickest part of breast and juices run clear. Serve with avocado if desired.

My twist on this is I never have Monterey Jack on hand so I leave that off, just the cheddar seems to be plenty of cheese. And we NEVER use salt, on anything. That is not an exaggeration. I keep my salt shaker in my laundry room to use on my "new" colored clothes.

Per Serving:

  • 284 calories

  • 32 grams protein

  • 12 grams carbs

  • 12 grams fat

  • 76 mg cholesterol

  • 924 mg sodium

  • 5 grams fiber

Diet Exchanges:

  • 0 milk

  • 0 veggies

  • 0 fruit

  • 0 bread

  • 4 meat

  • 0 fat

Ok---I just typed all that.

If you cook this I want to hear what you think. My husband will sometimes slice his and eat it in a tortilla.

Outdoor Wednesday (a little early)

This is my first ever Outdoor Wednesday post.
It is hosted by A Southern Daydreamer go check out everyones take on Outdoor Wednesday! I hope to participate often, I plan to begin planting this weekend and I am getting very excited about it!

First swim of the April!

First one was pushed in fully dressed, then I had the neighborhood kids flocking to the pool. All fully dressed!

I love summer, I love planting my flowers, I love the freedom, I love the warm weather, I love the visiting with friends that we never seem to have time for any other time.

What do you love about Summer?

Moms that discipline

Did she go to far?? I am all about discipline. At first I thought, its responsible parenting to discipline. I am all about shock and awe parenting. But I just went and read the story. They were THREE miles from home. That is too far. They were not toddlers, they are 13 and 10. Maybe three blocks from home....

How many times have you seen a parent in the store not discipline her kid and judge her for having a bad kid? Yet parents that do are judged as well. How far is too far? I believe you have to discipline when behavior occurs, I am not a "you wait till we get home" kind of mom. But the kids that generally (not all) need the public discipline are generally the very ones who probably don't get much at home. I am not talking toddlers here, I am talking the school age kids.

Parenting is not easy. Certainly not for the weak. Parents must be strong to do the battles that must be done day in and day out. Consistency is key and realize your gonna hurt your kids feelings, your gonna make them angry!! Let them sit in it for a while! I never apologize for the discipline I give-Mommy is sorry she put you in time out. NO WAY! Don't be sorry for that. Tell them your sorry their behavior is not better, if you must apologize for something. They need to learn that they are making the choice to be in time out by not doing what is expected of them. All behaviors have is best they know that from the beginning it makes their life easier in the long run!

*I am no expert, just a mom with opinions

Monday, April 27, 2009

When life changes....

E~November 1997
3 years old
with her "B" this
E~April 2009
14 years old
a heartbreaker

....not a bad change just different. At our home we are entering a new phase of life. My oldest is 14 ~little missy, we will call her E has her first boyfriend. She is in 8th grade. I told myself this will last a few days and be over. Not true. It has been 4 months!?!!???! The last month they have actually moved from just texting and seeing each other at school to wanting to spend time together on the weekends. I feel like I am in wayyy over my head. So far I have been able to have them (and friends) at our house where I am the supervision. How long that will last is unknown. E is a great kid, straight A's, has a few friends at a time, and is reserved and generally a good and level-headed kid. She is I think what we could call it "blossoming" and I don't like it one bit!!!

I have always been of the "it takes a village" philosophy, unfortunately, it seems as if I am the only one going through this stage. I need help-----how do I handle this life transition with grace??

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Extreme Makeover Me Edition~Seriously!!

{ae filkins}

Be sure to visit Amber's Blog she has Mr. Linky set up to share more stories!

There are people there more motivational than me.
I gained~3 FREAKIN pounds!

I know that its my fault, I haven't put the effort into exercise these past two weeks. I didn't do an EMME post last week. My aunt that is like a mother to me is moving to a town 2 hours away from me!! YAY! I say YAY b/c she has been living 20 hours away for the last 10 years and I can't wait to have her closer. Last week I was gone for a few days to help her find a place to live. I ate horribly while I was traveling and the hours spent in the car were hard on my back issues. Bad enough that I have scheduled the MRI for tomorrow to find the actual problem, hopefully leading to a way to make the pain end!! (enough whining for now)
Amber's question of the week is:
Share some of the music that you work out to.
What helps you rock it!?
What gets your blood pumpin?
My favorite new workout song is
Black-Eyed Peas- BOOM BOOM POW
I am jammin' just thinking about that song. LOVE IT!!
My playlist is made up of dance/old school rap!
Justin Timberlake
Danity Kane
Kanye West
Lady GaGa
Pussycat Dolls
Taylor Swift
Rascal Flatts
Toby Keith
Garth Brooks
Kenny Chesney
Will Smith
If I could get my workouts up to make through my entire playlist then I might be able to tip the scales in the right direction!
Pray that my MRI will bring some answers!!!

Monday, April 20, 2009


This is my "formal" sitting area. The quotations are b/c I am not a formal kind of girl. In any case, I do love this little conversation area in my home. Wendy over at the Shabby Nest in honor of her 200th post is giving away one of her Fabulous number pillows that I would love to win! If you have a few extra minutes in this beautiful April day you will want to pop over and leave her a comment to be in the running to win one of these Fabulous pillows! And if you are the winner instead of me, I will need to see pictures of where the Fabulousness is in your home.

BTW: This chair would love to be the recipient of this Fabulous pillow.

And please keep the Fabulous MckMama and baby Stellan in your prayers in the coming days that his surgery will go fabulously and they will be able to get home to the family that loves and misses them.

Monday, April 13, 2009

the Secret Club of Moms

Here is an idea I have.....its not a new idea, Oprah did it last week.

I thought it might be somewhat cathartic for all moms. I am going to open up Keepin' it Real to all moms. Link back to me from your blog if you would like. I am going to set the comments to accept anonymous, don't leave your name, leave your name, its up to you. Read through the comments, I believe it will help us all to know we are not the only ones going through tough parenting situations. My only rule is the golden one.
Do unto others as you would have done unto you.
Or in other words, lets make this a judgement free zone.
If you like the idea we can make it a recurring opportunity.
I will go first, not kind!!
I am a bad mother.
For many reasons.
Here is the one I have the most guilt over.....
when my youngest SJ (now 11) was 2 1/2 our family visited the beach with my sister~in~law and her husband who didn't yet have the joy of being parents. We had been there for about 15 minutes and they took our oldest E (5 years old) to jump the waves. Being the stellar parents that we are we had our eyes on SJ the whole time. At least I thought my husband did and he thought I did.....can you see where this is going????
at the beach
by the water
That was the longest 12 minutes of my life!
We were at a beach where all the chairs and umbrellas looked the same, she had toddled to the water to fill her little yellow and purple watering can with water. All the lifeguards were looking for her, radioing down the beach. She returned carrying her little watering can, smiling ear to ear, holding the hand of some other mother that noticed she was wandering the beach alone. This is why she had not been found. She didn't look lost. And when she saw us, she ran over like she was never gone saying "Daddy, I was looking for you so I could pour this water on you"
This is my choice of stories for 2 reasons.
  1. This was a huge deal, if we had been anywhere else I think someone might have called Family Services and taken my kids.

2. Kids are resilient-she was not affected by this at all. Not then, not now. She thinks we are OK as parents. (she is a preteen, no way would she tell you we are good parents)

Moms everywhere want to hear your stories......

Shhhh, We will keep your secret.

Sunday, April 12, 2009

Easter Tip

This is what the Easter Bunny brought for my girls. We use the same baskets every year. I used to wrap them with tulle and tie with cute Easter ribbon, that stopped a year or so ago. (no idea why) The big yellow chick is new this year, my younger daughter saw it in the window of the hallmark store next to her orthodontist. In a moment of weakness I went and bought it after she was checked in at school. This is our 14th Easter as parents, in the early years when there was not much money to spare I realized they would not remember the stuffed animals as they had so MANY. And I was right they didn't. In a couple of weeks when I am sure they will not miss them, I will pack these away with the Easter decor and pull them out again in the rotation several years from now.


He is risen!

Happy Easter
This photo is not from Easter at my house.
Here we have pouring rain.

Isn't it great to know that He is risen!!
We enjoyed and great Easter sermon this morning.
Our pastor read from John 20, it was an Easter sermon unlike any I had heard before. He titled the sermon the folded napkin.
More later about the Easter bunny visit!

Friday, April 10, 2009


You know, since I have become an adult one of the most important things I have learned, that I wish I would have known in high school is~Everyone is not going to just LOVE you~~and its OK.

My parents divorced when I was 12. It was ugly, my mom got custody of me. She was irresponsible and an alcoholic. My dad didn't fight her b/c he didn't want her to be alone. He just didn't want to be with her. One weekend when I was 13 I went to his house for the weekend and never went back. He continued to pay child support to my mother just to make her happy and let me stay with him. I didn't know that until I was grown but it speaks volumes to me about his love for me.

I am telling you this so you know that I was raised by a man. Somewhere along the way I missed out on the things you learn from a woman like:

  • how to put an outfit together
  • how great shoes are
  • that boys are not always with you for the right reason
  • how to decorate
  • how to accessorize
  • that not everyone is going to be your friend

These are just a few things I can think of off the top of my head that I feel deficient in! Anyway, I am learning that its OK if people don't love me. After all, I don't love everyone I meet! But lets find a way to be polite to each other. Everyone is entitled to their own opinion and feelings. Just like me!!

Thursday, April 9, 2009

Easter Bunnies....

I totally admire those of you who have/give live bunnies at Easter time. I am not that brave. We have a beautiful chocolate lab and he is the only pet we have. I did want to share my Easter bunnies~I bought these last year and I just love them on my front doors! I also included the urns I planted last weekend, along with the ferns, are caladium, and purple sweet potato. Obviously I am happy with how they turned out or they wouldn't be making an appearance on the blog!

Wednesday, April 8, 2009

Extreme Makeover ME Edition

Welcome to week 2 of Extreme Makeover ME Edition here at keepin it real. For more stories visit Amber's site for more life changing stories.
Things have not gone very well here. If you are looking for progress and motivation, keep on going b/c its not here!! :( I have been having some tough mental days and been down. No particular reason why, I just tend to be that way. For me to say I have been doing great at the exercise and eating right and on the path to weight loss would be a lie. In the spirit of keepin' it real, there has been no progress and I haven't even gone in to weigh myself to see if there has been damage!
To Amber's question this week:
How are you keeping track of your achievements? This blog of course. I need to find a ticker to use on this blog to have a visual reference. I can usually tell by my energy level.
How do you reward yourself when you achieve a goal? I am not a goal setter, I would like to look and feel better in general. This is my goal. I am also not much of a list maker. I keep everything in my head that is going on. This could be my problem....too much swirling around up there.
I am optimistic that with Spring arriving and the sunshine being bright and warm I will find my motivation.
Come back next Wednesday~ Things can only get better!

Monday, April 6, 2009

Cooking and Cleaning (the story of my life)

So its Monday......

On Tuesday I absoloutely must clean my oven.

My oldest angel (14) thought she would try to cook her favorite food in the oven. Everything tastes better in the oven. Only you can't really cook BACON in the oven. I am complaining. However both of my girls generally eat cold cereal for breakfast, and I let them. Occasionally they decide to have something else and will make it for themselves. I have a little guilt over this. Being a SAHM, you would think I could at least get up and fix my girls a good breakfast. When they were younger they told me frequently that I do not cook as good as their Papa (my daddy). I agree totally with them. He never taught me to cook. I pretty much had to learn on the fly after I married and moved out of his house.

What I am telling you is, there will not be a recipe blog coming from me. Or a menu for the week/month post.

Fitting for the new lifestyle we do not eat fried anything. Only we never have. That's a lie. I never cook fried anything. We do eat fried foods.

My SIL has lost quite a bit of weight (33 lbs. since 1-1-2009), she cut out sodas, is walking on her treadmill and doing WW online. I say YAY for her! And I am a bit jealous. I guess if I were doing those things it might happen for me as well.

In the next couple of days I am going to post a picture! I want to see what you all look like and I will do the same!

Thursday, April 2, 2009

Learning from your mistakes

This post has to begin with a disclaimer.
These are my opinions.
Agree with me.
Don't agree with me.
You are allowed your opinions!
Since your still reading I guess you want to hear mine.
My youngest child who has a bit of a dramatic side, (she is 11) has heard from an early age not to come to me and say "That thing (whatever it is) hurt me." I cringe when my kids have friends over and they say something to that affect. What I am trying to teach my kids is to own their actions, mistakes, achievements etc.... "That doorway didn't trip you honey, you weren't paying attention to what you were doing and you tripped. "
It is important at all ages we own our actions.
Good or Bad.

Wednesday, April 1, 2009

Extreme Makeover--Me Edition

Welcome to the weekly improvement update on ME. Make sure to visit Amber to find more stories about what others are doing to makeover their life!

Here is how my week went....

I went on a beautiful vacation with my hubby to the Bahamas, I gained a mere 2 lbs. This feels like a victory considering I ate a 4 course meal every night and drank many drinks with umbrellas in them.

To get on track I plan on going to the Cardio Room at our Community Center with a couple of friends first thing in the morning. My intention is to do this on a daily basis, getting myself into a good groove before the kids are home for the summer.

The biggest way that I am doing something for myself is accepting who I am. I am in the process of going through my closet and ridding myself of all those things I am hanging onto for when I can get down to that "size". I know, if I am keeping it real that those clothes are no longer my friend and they are holding me back. They haven't seen daylight since the 90's and they need to move on and so do I!!! I have been trying to build a more updated wardrobe with clothes that fit the body I live in now, in an effort to feel presentable.

I am ready for what ever is next!!