Happy Five, Chuck.

Five years ago, right this second, I was holding a tiny brand new baby and wondering how I survived the epidural not kicking in. Looking at this tiny being with a ridiculous amount of hair and hoping I wouldn’t break her.

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My baby girl is about the coolest little lady I know. She loves to look at (and pick up) bugs and get dirty, but bath time is about the best time of her day.

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She loves Star Wars figures and the 501st Regiment guys, but refuses to watch the movies. (Yoga and Boba Foot are her favorites.) I gave her a bag of shells from Florida, and she acted like I just gave her a bag of diamonds.

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She wears tiaras and feather boas to the mall. She loves animals so much that she tried to coax a deer into my friend’s house today because she wanted a new pet.

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She wants to be a veterinarian, but more specifically, a “dolphin doctor”. And that’s only because she can’t be a mermaid, though it’s only a matter of time before she finds out about the lady in Hawaii who has figured out how to be a mermaid.

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She loves Google and Siri and is never more delighted than when there is a YouTube video to answer her question. We spent an hour watching videos about baby snakes one day, and then she tried to catch the one under our porch to rescue him and make him have babies.

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“Healthy food” and “being strong” are her suggestions for everyone to get over being sick. Yoga is “like dancing but slower and kind of like praying too.” We saw a lady with a “ree-dic-lee-us” (ridiculous) hat on. This girl, taking after her momma, will talk your ear off about absolutely anything at all, but mostly the myriad pets she has or wants to have.

Every time she sees the words “stop”, “exit”, “fire” or “pizza” (four words she most definitely can read), she tells them out with great vigor and panache and volume. Makes driving down the freeway very exciting.

Chuck, you are five today and you cannot read this quite yet. I hope one day you do, and you know how much your brother and I love you and how much light you bring into every single person’s life that you touch.

You are one of the two best things I’ve ever done in my life and no matter what, I hope you always remember that.

Happy birthday, sweet girl. I cannot wait to celebrate with you this weekend. <3

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I’m Not Dead.

I know it’s been a while since I posted any non-review material.

I owe you guys the rest of the LA trip recap, two months late. I have a couple of giveaways to finish up. I think I still owe you guys a recap from Disney last winter.

I am a little behind, for real.

But I’ve been out. Blowing bubbles and looking for the perfect rock on the beach. Talking about algebra and how to ask a girl out.  Multiple football games a week. Dancing for no reason in the middle of the grocery store. Learning how to tie a necktie using YouTube.

I also got a great new job and training for that is eating up my time. My schedule has changed and I’m making adjustments and traveling and doing crazy amazing things and feeling like life could never have become this good without the amazing support I have from friends like you guys.

So thank you.

And I’ll be in Miami for work this weekend, so you can count on having some interesting updates and maybe even a vlog from the crazy beautiful hotel I get to stay in…..and that should be fun!

GAME ON with The Fitness Games (a review!)

When I was offered this review opportunity, I was a bit skeptical. Like always.

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Like Tasha over at Hip Healthy Chick, I was like “I can totally do a couple of  squats and some jumping jacks. I totally can do this.”

So I opened up the app to take a look. There’s a lot more involved than just jumping jacks and squats. FOR. SURE.

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I figured at my pace, I cannot outrun many people. Unless we are talking about Chuck, and that’s only because my legs are longer than hers and after a bit, she just wants me to carry her. I assumed that any of my opponents would not have that same issue.

Uh, yeah. So I started with a full body workout. I challenged a random person, because I absolutely did not want to embarrass myself with someone I already knew. I am intensely competitive and really do not like losing. Which is a great thing! And a terrible thing all at once.

They have each workout outlined, before you jump in. Which was my favorite part. My other favorite was, in case you didn’t have the brainpower after an 8 hour day in the office to remember what a rope pull down was, there are directions broken down for each movement as well.

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I do not have a proper #sweatyselfie for after this workout. But it is safe to say that the guy next to me on the machines at the gym may have herniated himself laughing at my super red face and my flailing through the pul downs and my almost-face-plant into the floor trying to power through the last plank.

This is no joke, man. And this is the beginning level.

BUT. If I can do this, you are all over it like hot fudge on a sundae. YOU CAN DO THIS.

And you totally should.

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You can join in on the craziness! Check out the app on iOS for Apple iPhones or on Android or check TFG on Instagram or their pretty awesome Facebook page!

This post is was sponsored by The Fitness Games through their partnership with FitApproach.  I was not compensated monetarily, but was provided the Platinum version of the application for review.  As always, all opinions are my own.

Fall is coming.

I’m having a hard time with fall this year.Don’t get me wrong. Sweaters, fog, boots, pie, Halloween, back to school…I’m in. I love fall. Fall is my favorite.

But I feel a little melancholy that summer is over.

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This summer, I took time and put my phone down. I went to California for my first blog conference. I spent more time with my kids and less time with my computer and my cell phone. We had adventures. We went to the beach more times than I can count. We blew bubbles. We watched the stars. We went swimming and inner-tubing and out on a boat. We went to multiple jazz band concerts and danced. We read books and pretended and learned.

It’s the first summer where I felt like I was ok being a single parent. That my kids were ok, I had not irrevocably messed them up by staying a single parent and not seeking a partner.

That we would all be ok if I parented solo a little while longer. Or forever.
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It was one of the first summers in a very long time where I could relax when I was done with work and just be with my kids.

I didn’t feel the need to do more and be more and say more and more more more more of everything. We flew by the seat of our pants a lot and it paid off with memories and funny stories to tell and a jar full of rocks and seashells and a lot of falling into bed at night, exhausted and happy.

IMG_3640And I guess I am not ready for fall, because I don’t want that to end.

Plus, the rain is coming, and I’m never ready for that.

How was your summer? Are you ready for your fall?

 

California, DAY THREE POINT FIVE (and another giveaway!)

When we last left our heroine, I was swooning over Jillian. Seriously, that was the coolest.

In this installment of Cupcake’s Epic Blogfest Bonanza and California and Workouts, after Jillian, I was topped out. I needed a break.

So off I wandered to explore the area. I went in search of food and found a Carl’s Jr. Which was my first mistake.

I ate the Carl’s Jr. That was my second mistake.

My third mistake was doing all of that before I headed to a bootcamp with Kasey from Powercakes. Now Kasey is one of my new favorite human beings. And I got the opportunity to work out with one of my other favorite humans, Tasha.

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Kasey is the real deal, yo. This circuit-based workout she had us doing was no joke. (And was done with Harbinger gear – holler to a fellow HumanX ambassador!)

It was hot. I was not used to this sort of workout. It was a lot of working out in a very short period of time.

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But Tasha? Tasha wouldn’t let me give up. She is seriously the best workout partner ever. She let me take a rest and then she made me get right back into it – encouraging e the whole way. I wish I lived closer to her, I would DEFINITELY hit her classes up.

So off we went back to the conference center, sweaty and well worked out. I hit up the expo center quickly before our next “tweet break” and picked up quite a bit of swag.

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To be totally honest, the headbands and the bottle and the band came from the Powercakes workout. But still, awesome.

So next up was a “tweet break” with Under Armour. I was excited because of all of the hubbub around the Misty Copeland ad.

I let people tel me I was too tall for ballet. That I was too big for modeling. That I was too dumb for college. That I could never be what I wanted to be because I wasn’t enough or I was too much.

And the “I Will What I Want” campaign is reminding women that they do not need permission or approval from anyone to do what you want to do. The best things in life are given, not earned. I wish this campaign had been around when I was younger. I hope my baby girl grows up driven by strong women role models like Misty or like Shauna Harrison, who is one of my new favorite humans and who spoke during the tweet break. Love her.

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I managed to tweet enough about Under Armour and their campaign during that time that they actually ended up giving me a prize pack! So grateful for the gifts and the amazing work they’re doing with this campaign.

Next was another workout.

No, I am not kidding.

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This was yoga with Tara Stiles. Everyone was freaking out and telling me this would be great. I was totally not feeling like I was in a zen state of mind.

But this was not your typical yoga. This was Strala yoga, Tara Stiles-style.

Some people didn’t care for it, but I thought it was great. She moved pretty quickly through the poses, and was a little giggly, but I really enjoyed her. I would totally take yoga from her if she was local. I spent a lot of time in the corpse pose and every time she walked by me, she would high five me and tell me I was rocking the corpse pose.

So of course I had to get a selfie with her. She is lovely and called me “high five girl.”

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Last but certainly not least in the BlogFest portion of things was the Happy Hour Networking Hour. I was so tired at this point, it was all a blur. I did get Caroline from Trendy Trainer and Kasey from Powercakes together for a selfie.

Because selfies are my favorite, and these two lovely ladies handed me my own ego and reminded me I have a bit to go before I can call myself a fitness fanatic:)

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At this point, I was so far beyond exhausted, I was ready to go home. I headed back to the hotel room, posted this amazing vlog and packed up all my swag and my overnight gear.

So all of the swag for two days, plus one small bag with my overnight stuff ended up looking something like this.

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What you cannot see is the fully jam-packed backpack on my back.

This was pretty awesome. But heavy.

So that was the end of Blogfest, but I still had two days to go with the conference….

AND NOW FOR A GIVEAWAY!

None of these companies are sponsoring this giveaway directly. I just got a whole mess of swag at the BlogFest and wanted to share <3
a Rafflecopter giveaway