August 23, 2011

Sailing Away

post signatureI absolutely love this dress! I got it at Forever 21 for $17! I really like that store; however, it is SO hard to navigate around.  It is my worse nightmare, because I like to explore stores that are clean, organized and color coordinated.  But, this dress popped out at me! And, I got the shoes at Target for $6! When I went to pick up Porter, this little girl goes, "Mommy, mommy! Look at her red shoes! They are so pretty!" Aww, I wanted to give them to her but then realized that I would never find them again for that price so I just walked away!

August 20, 2011

Woot, woot!

It has taken me 12 weeks, but I have finally hit my goal weight! I stepped on the scale today, and I weighed 109.8! When I first started, I was 118lbs so that is 8lbs! I am not sure if you can tell or not, but I can actually see around myself instead of my love handles getting in the way.  Oh sure, I still have them, but they are not as big.  I even found a stretch mark that I never knew that I had, because it was filled in with fat.

Even more exciting is that I can run 3.10 miles without stopping! That is huge for me.  I even hit my best time today at 30.05 mins (on the treadmill).  I may not be very fast, but I am really enjoying running.  My body craves it now, which I never thought would happen.  I sweat profusely which means that my heart rate is up.  I push through the pain, because I envision the end result: looking and feeling good when I see my husband (for the first time in 8 months) VERY soon.  I am even going shopping for a bikini tomorrow.  The last time that I wore a bikini was when I was 4 months pregnant with Porter-and that was almost 5 years ago.

I look forward to working out with Joe when he comes home for good and possibly entering into races with him.  Not for time but as something to do together.  For 15 years (this October!), I have watched Joe be the super stud at fitness, and I don't want to watch from the sidelines anymore.  We can spend quality time together working out, and at the same time, it will be really nice to have him there to watch Porter so that I can go take classes at the gym.

Now I need a new goal weight! But, I am focusing on toning things up and not just losing weight.  I don't want to look crazy toned but rather just like I don't eat sweets all day.

Oh! And, speaking on sweets, I have cut back on sugars for the last 9 weeks, and I am so proud to say that I am not addicted to sugar anymore! Sure, I still crave sweets, but I eat them in moderation and not 5 times a day. I like iced tea unsweetened now and not loaded with sugar.  I haven't had soda in 9 weeks.  I drink a TON of water, and when I want a treat at Starbucks, I order it sugar-free, fat-free. It tastes the same, and I don't have the guilt afterwards.  I have also started eating Skinny Cow ice cream, and I can't stand the taste of real ice cream now.  Too sugary and heavy.  I eat a lot more fruits, which I know are loaded with sugar, but they help my Crohn's.  And, I have not had a Crohn's flare-up in over 9 weeks! That is huge.  There truly is something to say about controlling a diet!

Woot, woot!
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August 18, 2011

Never more proud to be a Military Spouse but...

The last few months have been extremely rough for me.  I have not admitted it to anyone, because I like to give the illusion that I am superwoman and can handle it all.  But, the fact of the matter is that my heart breaks everyday when I hear Porter say "I miss Daddy" and when I wake up having to take on the world while my other half has already been up for 9 hours protecting us all.  I go to work where I listen to Survivors tell me about their amazing sons and daughters who were killed in combat, accidents, passed away from illnesses and, yes, who even took their own lives.  Every single Servicemember deserves the same respect, and I can't pass judgement on them.  How could I? Their Families are left picking up the pieces and trying to move on.  One mother called me, and I asked her what I could help her with, and she said "Something to take the pain away and make the tears stop."  Wow, how do you answer that? All I could say was that we would always be here for her and that her son would never be forgotten.  But, he completed suicide, and you won't here about him on the news.  You won't hear about the horrific PTSD that he faced everyday.  You just assume that he had mental problems and walked away from life.  It is ok, because I used to think that way too.  I admit it.  Until I started hearing the Families talk.  And, you know what? They just want to tell their stories and have someone listen.  And, not judge.  How much Financial Counseling do I actually do? Very little.  I listen, and I get to provide comfort to our Families. 

That being said, I carry a huge weight on my shoulders every day.  My husband is deployed, and I know that I could get the knock on the door at any time. Please read this article which pretty much sums up my fear:
7 1/2 months. I have held everything in for 7 1/2  months.  I have listened to everyone, helped out with everything that I could, raised Porter alone, been away from family, and have been severely exhausted everyday.  And yet, I know that I could be doing it forever if something happened to Joe, and that is what makes me melt down.  Tonight, on VH1, Taryn from American Widow Project is nominated for the "Do Something 2011 Award" for all of her amazing work in starting up an organization that has brought hope, friendship, and life to young military widows.  Their husbands won't be coming home in 4 1/2 months...their lives have completely changed.  So, do I have anything to complain about? No, I probably don't.  But, one inspiring widow came up to me at work and said, "Robyn, you can talk about your husband to is ok.  I want you to be happy."

Then, I think about all of our courageous wounded warriors.  I know when they are injured, and I can read about their injuries.  I picture in my mind their families getting the dreaded phone call saying that their Servicemember was seriously or very seriously injured and their lives changing forever.  And yet, the majority make it through that storm and end up like this family:

There is no rhyme or reason for this post other than to vent.  I am very, very proud to be a military spouse and the proud wife to my husband.  But, dangit, I have the right to complain too, and I have been holding it in and appearing strong for too long.  Please read this: I am struggling with everything, but I won't tell you.  Thousands of us military spouses are struggling and won't tell you.  Please remember us in your prayers along with our Servicemembers.  Because, the fact is, we are back here taking care of everything so that our Servicemembers can concentrate on one thing: protecting our nation.

Don't be worried, I am fine.  I just needed to get it out.  Yes, I can emotionally handle this job.  But, if I don't talk about it (which a lot of things I cannot for confidentiality reasons) I know that it will eat me alive.  Please don't look at me and assume that I have everything together.  And, please don't get uncomfortable when I start crying, because I am hitting that deployment wall.  It happens.  And, it will fade away, eventually.  I am just surprised that it has taken this long!

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August 7, 2011

I sure enough did...

just finish watching "Princess and the Frog" without Porter.  I have been wanting to watch this movie since it first came out, but Porter resisted.  So, I waited until it came out on video and immediately bought it. But, Porter couldn't get through the first five minutes. So, today we had movie day.  All day long.  I needed to catch up on my magazines and snuggle time and Porter needed to...well...chill.  After asking him which movie he wanted to watch (again and again), I finally pulled out "Princess and the Frog".  He got excited so I did an internal "Hooray" and popped it in the DVD player.  We were able to watch 3/4 of the movie but then had to leave to go see the Army Band concert on post (ps. the Dragoons are awesome!!)  When we got back, I put Porter to bed, did a 40 minute workout (abs, arms and a 20 minute interval training) and then decided to sit down and finish watching the rest of the movie! Perhaps I am a sucker for a fairytale or that I never watched enough animated movies as a child.  But, I loved it.  And, I felt a little guily about watching it without Porter.  But, he is 4, and he will get over it!
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July 31, 2011

We All Need A New Look Sometimes!

Two months ago, I hit the blog wall. I didn't feel motivated to post anything, and I knew that I needed a new look. My friend Shelly won a new blog design from, and I thought that I would check it out. Lo and behold, she was having a 1/2 off sale (I am a Financial Counselor after all)! I jumped at the chance to redesign my own blog and perhaps a bit of my own life. After two months of my indecisiveness, Jeannette finally debuted this new blog design! What do you think?? Here is a photo shoot that my friend Ayse did to get the perfect picture for the center of my header:

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June 5, 2011

Operation R&R Ready is....ON!

Now that we have our R&R vacation booked for September (Joe is meeting us in Hawaii!!), I have three months to this droopy body a little bit more perked up!

For the second week, in a row, I have started doing strength training and running/walking. Tonight, I ran/walked about 2.5 miles (might have been more, I am not sure) with some great workout buddies! Their husbands are coming home for R&R very soon as well. They are great motivators, and it has been a great stress reliever to have girls to talk to about all of the crazy crap going on in my life (ie. no air conditioning for the 9 night in a row...)

I hope to lose about 4-5 lbs but really concentrate on toning. I am going to try to workout 4 times a week depending on the week.  It is very hot out which makes it difficult to get started. Also, the workouts bleed into Porter's bedtime so I have to be careful about that.

So, in all sweaty glamour, I am presenting two honest pictures so that you will hold me accountable.  Any words of encouragement would be greatly appreciated! And, I don't know, checking in once in a while would be cool :)

Here we go!

Oh goodnight. This is such a bad picture...

May 10, 2011

Greatest gift ever...

Throughout our Army career, I have been blessed with a lot of wonderful people who have come in and out of my life at various stages.  With this being Joe's third deployment, I knew that I had to change my self-care as I have a lot more stressors right now: full-time job that deals with grief day in and day out, child, being own housekeeper, yada yada yada.  I knew that I needed to surround myself by amazing, strong friends who would help me out and call me out on my bull crap.

I have several of these friends but two stand out to me right now in their own spotlight. 

First, my sister Megan.  We were definitely not close growing up, and we didn't really start to become close until Porter was born.  It was as though something clicked.  I know that I can call her at any second, and she will be there.  We have a bond that took years to develop.  We are so similiar and yet so different.  But, isn't that the reason why it works?

Second, my great friend Ayse.  We have been so through so much together in the last almost two years.  Co-FRG leaders, staying up until midnight putting together a cake train, hours of conversations, countless dinners, and Auntie Ayse.  She puts me in my place and tells it like it is.  Most of the time I don't want to hear it at the time, but she is always right.  I never really had close girlfriends growing up, and I count her as one of a small handful that I can truly call a best friend.

Together, these amazing women collaborated to give me the greatest gift. Memories.  What greater gift is that? Look below:

A book just for me. And, for someone who is always behind the camera, it is so nice to have pictures of my favorite little guy from birth to now-with me in them!

So, thank you lovely ladies for giving me a tangible object to carry with me that will reaffirm why I am a mother. On the good and bad days,

I love you girls.